PBP2012: “C”- Compassion In Our Spiritual Practice

Most would assume that spiritual people are also compassionate people.  Most in many ways are.  Through our divine work, we do our best to create positive energy in the world around us.  We look for where energy is needed and we give freely when we are able.  One aspect of compassion that is often times overlooked or taken for granted is “compassion to self”.   Turning compassion inward is usually something that is taken for granted.  We live in a world that moves faster than ever before, and this year life seems to be moving even faster.  We have to take time for ourselves and truly LIVE our great work.  I see so many spiritual people running themselves into the ground trying to be everywhere at all times.  This in turn causes harm to the self, the physical body takes on excess stress, chaos, and at times sickness.   We have to look at where we can love ourselves as fully and fiercely as we love our paths and those we are of service to.  “Healer heal thyself”, is a phrase that comes to mind.  If you are in leadership within our spiritual communities and you take on too much you are not living in the deepest aspect of what community is.  Delegation of responsibility enables trust to be shared within a group, and it lets you breathe.  We have to take time to connect to a sense of what we need to create greater growth for our path.  Compassion for the self is not being selfish, but it is something that is necessary to create space for us to heal, to grow, and to foster deeper connections within our communities.

Walking a spiritual path means more that reaching out, we have to reach in.  Being kind to ourselves, not holding on to judgement, and just allowing ourselves to be is necessary for growth.  If you are connected to a healing modality take time to use it on yourself.  We all have the capacity to generate and create healing for ourselves.  We must not overwhelm ourselves with more that we can handle.

Here are a few quick steps to bring compassionate connection into your heart:

1) Take a look at how much you are taking on, and delegate where necessary.  Our spiritual paths and lives are usually busy ones, but we can not be effective leaders if we are chronically overworked.

2) Take time to “heal thyself”.  Take time to breath and to center yourself daily.  Turn off the TV, shut off Facebook, and turn off the cell phone.  Give yourself a few moments each day to “disconnect” from all of life’s distractions.

3) Appreciate your body by moving into healthier lifestyles.  When we are running ourselves into the ground with unhealthy eating choices we are not being kind to our bodies.  We only have body, and we must take care of it.  We must be kind and compassionate to the flesh and bone structure that houses our soul.  Go for a walk, set realistic fitness goals, take a yoga class, make positive dietary changes and give yourself time to relax.

4) Practice presence and show up to your life.

These are just a few steps in extending kindness to the self.  What are some ways that you extend kindness to yourself?

Mahayogi Das CFT CSN MAT PAT