“Your daily life is your temple and your religion.”
Yesterday I asked myself: “Who is the most spiritual person you know?” I was rather surprised when no obvious person came to me, but had to laugh out loud when I saw Azaria’s face. For those of you who don’t know Azaria, she’s the main character in my novel, Sisters of the Silver Moon.
I pondered our cultural notion of spirituality, and also why I’ve heard from women who say they want ‘to be like Azaria’. I was intrigued, but not surprised, that a fictional character was held up as an archetype of ‘spirituality in action’.
As a writer, I adored watching Azaria unfold. She’s 56 years old, and has four adult daughters. Her husband died some years ago in a storm. She lives in an old homestead in the mountains of Colorado, and spends her days tending her beehives and growing/harvesting herbs. Without doubt, she’s well-loved and respected in her community. But she’s not perfect, and that’s part of her charm.
The more I think about this character (and certainly where she’s heading in the sequel, Behind Closed Doors) I can understand her magnetism. Although she’s a fictional character, she does represent something to which we can aspire. And isn’t it interesting, when you look at the Latin roots of words, to see aspire and spiritual both containing ‘spir’? As a metaphysician, I also see it as ‘to breathe in life’. Indeed, to breathe in the Divine.
Perhaps you or someone you know meditates regularly or goes to church. Maybe they or someone else burns incense or keeps a gratitude journal. Maybe their temple is Mother Nature herself. Perhaps they’re avid readers of spiritual or person-growth books or the Bible. Maybe they regularly consult divination cards? Do these things make us spiritual? No, no more than hitting a piano key makes you a pianist. All these things, and more, may well be integral to our daily practice, but spirituality is about the outer experiences of our life reflecting and being congruent with our inner values.
So if we breathe in the Divine, then surely we must breathe out the Divine, too?
What are our values? Examples include: independence, adventure, family, beauty, kindness, justice, love, wisdom, truth, compassion, trust, fidelity, power, healing, leadership, knowledge, intimacy, integrity, growth, humility, dignity, food, friendship, community, creativity, etc.
Do our interactions with friends, family, colleagues and strangers mirror our inner values?
The character Azaria shows us that everyday we are learning, and every day of our lives is an opportunity to be congruent. When our outer life truly reflects our inner values, then life has a way of flowing harmoniously. And when Fate brings unexpected life-changing events our way, we do have the spiritual tools within to ‘breathe in the Divine’. More than anything, I believe she teaches us that when we love and accept ourselves, then loving others is easy. And isn’t that at the heart of spirituality? To recognise that we are all one? All drops of the same ocean?
What does spirituality mean to you?
Love, Veronika xxxx