Walking through the threshold and searching for answers…
The passing of someone very close to me has opened a few existential doors that had been naturally shut until recently. Opening these doors and actually going through the threshold has prompted me to reflect more deeply on the importance and foundational impact that spirituality and emotional well being can have in our lives.
- How do we anchor our souls when the waves of life threaten to undo us?
- When the dark clouds of depression continue to hover?
- When the next step in life unsettlingly unclear?
These are difficult questions that the logical side of our brain finds especially challenging. This is where meditation and spirituality become invaluable allies which can offer solace and some semblance of understanding where rational thought cannot.
I believe that where meditation and spirituality are concerned, in particular, the later, there exist 5 essential ingredients that can lead to spiritual wellness. When practiced diligently and without any prejudices, your spiritual well-being and fortitude can be greatly enhanced in and out of the water, in business, in relationships and life in general.
Practice to practice…
My site here at Surfsentinel began as a referential guide for better safety practices for watermen and women alike.
If you have been reading some of my more recent posts, that objective has gone through some substantial changes. The website has acquired a deeper, more meaningful quest for value-first content, with a strong focus on self-development strategies through the practice of action water sports, mostly surfing and other extreme board sports.
This journey has also allowed me to recognize the undeniable power of having a right mindset, and how it can have a positive impact on our lives.
But having the right mindset, mastering your thoughts and emotions, and effectively putting these strategies into practice is easier said than done. Like all things in life that really matter, making them actionable takes dedication, commitment self-discipline, and practice. Lots of practice…here’s a great example of what I mean: (you can enjoy the whole video from last year’s Quick Silver Pro France semifinals (heat 2) between Gabriel Medina v.s. John John Florence, but the amazing stuff begins at 04:30 and again at 08:50).
Very similar to a recipe, these strategies are the ingredients. And like Gabe and John John demonstrate above, they can also be learned.
However, for the recipe to work, each individual is responsible for how to best apply the recipe’s ingredients.
A consideration on the topics ahead…
Before I go on, I wish to offer my apologies in advance for any sensibilities which I may be hurt during the next topic. My only intention is to offer provocative, thoughtful insights which may help you arrive to your own conclusions…
That been said, it is now time to go deeper and find out what these “ingredients” are, and how they can help you improve your personal and professional life.
Wisdom from the past remains relevant today…
Buddha once said:
“Overcome your uncertainties and free yourself from dwelling on sorrow. When you delight in existence, you will awaken, and become a guide to those in need, revealing the path to many”.
Do me a favor. Read this quote again carefully. As you continue reading this post, reflect on its profound meaning. See how your conclusions complement the list below.
It’s quite possible that you may be using some of these “ingredients” already. If that’s the case, celebrate it and share what you have learned with others. The more they are shared, the more powerful they become, and the better the results.
The 5 ingredients of spiritual wellness…
1. We stop.
Easy enough, right? No, not really.
As recreational or professional watermen and women, we pride ourselves on our independence, breaking away from the mainstream…moving away from conventional notions.
We became committed at understanding and protecting our oceans, for our own safety as much as for our enjoyment. But most importantly for that of others.
But let’s face it.
Even with our best intentions in mind, the reality is that the vast majority of our tribe also falls victim to the proverbial hamster wheel (and as bad as it may be for us, it’s much worse for your average 9 to 5 company”collaborator”, wouldn’t you agree?).
And so, before we know it, we are all caught in an endless cycle of financial, family and career commitments.
Now, let’s try this again. We stop…oh no! We can’t stop! We must keep going…gotta pay those bills, need to get that promotion, have to save for that college fund, and on and on it goes.
For many of us, stopping and getting off the hamster wheel is nearly impossible.
Or is it?
We are all creatures of habit. We are especially prone to acquiring bad habits and “hamster wheeling” is pretty much at the top of the list.
We need to work hard to earn that paycheck to take care of the bills. And if that runs us to the ground, so be it.
Granted, your circumstances may be less than adequate and, often times, beyond your control. Natural disasters, terminal illness, the death of a loved one. These are all situations you can’t control. However, what we can control is how we react towards these situations.
And do you know what happens when you exert control over how you react to adverse circumstances?
You stop the hamster wheel!
You are back in control.
And then…you can get off.
Go ahead, take in the sights! You’ve earned it!
2. We become still.
We are energy.We are present. Aware. We must learn to quiet our minds.
You can still your mind through meditation, quiet reflection, exercise, yoga, or even by taking a serene walk through your favorite park (or beach!).
Throw a stone in a pond. It will make a big splash. The pond will be filled with movement, concentric circles radiating from the source of the impact…chaos, in a micro scale, but chaos nonetheless. Eventually, if you do not throw another stone, the pond will eventually become quiet and still again.
That is what we need to achieve with our mind and spirit (a.k.a. life energy, vibration or whatever you prefer to call it). By learning to become still we open the gateway to spiritual wellness.
3. We pray.
I believe in a higher power.
And I know that discussing this subject will probably touch a nerve or two on more than one of you out there. I promise to tread lightly.
Prayer can be expressed in many ways and it is intimately personal. It is also a foundational ingredient that many of us have decided to ignore. Many of us even feel uncomfortable talking about it. I am Catholic. I believe in God. And I also believe in the power of prayer.
HOWEVER…I do not believe or follow the Catholic church as an institution. Even though there are very good, noble teachings, which have enormous moral and ethical merit, there are also very confusing, outdated ones which no longer apply to our current world. And please don’t get me started on the church’s self-proclaimed practice of “piety” and “humility”. Just have a look at the opulence and excessive luxury of the Vatican and you will understand what I am talking about.
But one thing remains true for many of us who believe on some sort of higher power, and who also believe that there exists someone or something “out there” that looks after us and is responsible for the universal order of things.
And that one truth is the power of prayer.
Like the communication that has existed between men and women since the beginning of their existence, and which has been essential for their millenary evolution, communication with a higher power holds just as fundamentally true.
As mentioned before, prayer can be expressed in many ways: a solemn, austere conversation done in a church or temple, or an intimate chat with an old friend (God, Source, Yahwe, Universal Consciousness, etc.) while enjoying the last few minutes of a beautiful sunset, who in the end, will always be willing to listen and offer you unconditional help and advice.
You just have to ask…and then listen.
4. We ask for help.
Why is it so difficult to ask for help when we so desperately need it?
Is it perhaps pride? Or maybe inadequacy?
Maybe it is that we are ashamed. We think we are not worthy enough to receive help. We shy away from asking for help because we feel vulnerable from the critique of others. It could also be that we may think that we are just not capable enough. That we are weak.
But consider the above quote from Buda. Take a moment to ponder about the meaning behind each sentence. It is as profound as it is beautiful:
“…When you delight in existence, you will awaken, and become a guide to those in need, revealing the path to many”.
I am an advocate of the global awakening. It is happening in our world. It is taking place right now. And it is as real as the words I am writing to you in this post. As an example, here are some beliefs that are beginning to take root in this awakening:
1. The growing belief that there are indestructible unifying bonds between us, between other species and our world.
2. Contrary to divisive propaganda, these bonds exist so we may experience them.
3. Unification of mankind can heal our world.
4. The belief that we are all products of our world.
5. The belief that life on our planet is in mortal danger.
6. The belief that we still have the capacity to join together and make things better.
So why haven’t we seen more of this awakening?
Well, think of it this way. We have all been in a deep slumber. Sort of the sleep that I’m sure you have seen on some of those science fiction movies like “Alien”, “Avatar” or more recently, “Passengers”. Yes, folks, geek alert just ahead! In these movies, the characters generally wake up from a very long sleep, I mean, really long. Like months, or even years long. When they wake up, it’s never pretty. It’s almost like they are being born again. And then they go through a very slow waking and recovery process.
That’s what I think that is happening to all of us now. We have been sleeping for a very, very long time, and we are finally coming out of that deep slumber.
Some of us are handling the waking process better than others.
Some are simply not handling it well at all.
And then there are others that carry some form of monster inside them that make things very uncomfortable for the rest of us. I think it is a fair analogy, don’t you?
5. We trust.
Have you ever manifested your wishes or desires to the “Man Upstairs”? A.K.A. God, Source, etc.
How’s that working out for you?
Well, believe it or not, there is documented, scientific proof that this skill really does exist and, like everything, to get better at it, you need to learn how to do it properly and then practice it over and over again.
Eventually, you will get better at manifesting your desires.
I have been witness to its undeniable power. I have also been studying this for some time and, in the beginning, I admit that I pretty much sucked at it!
But through seriously learning and immersing myself in the subject (and keeping an open mind), I was finally able to improve my manifesting ability.
I am going to present to you a bit of what I learned and what has worked for me.I am very excited to share this knowledge with you, right here, right now:
That’s it. The premise is that just like when you use your GPS in your car, where you input your destination into the computer, the GPS will calculate all the data and variables, taking care of the rest of the details so it may get you there in the fastest, safest way possible.
Trust your GPS. It will take you to wherever you want to go. As long as you follow the directions, IT will take care of the rest for you.
The analogy is totally applicable when requesting and then trusting the Universe, God, Source, etc. to take care of the details for you. You will arrive at your destination (what you asked for) in the safest, fastest, most expedient way universally possible. Just trust IT and stop concerning yourself with the end result.
Does this all work? In my personal experience, I can tell you that, yes, it does work.
But again, just like everything, it requires a commitment to learning and implementing the right techniques and strategies, while keeping an open mind (sometimes this becomes a bit of a stretch for many of us).
Can you really get anything you wish for? The answer is…
But here’s the catch.
You have to take inspired positive action.
When I first started learning about conscious creation, prayer and law of attraction, I had trouble reconciling with one very misguiding premise: “You can have anything in this world simply by asking!”.And one thing that the authors and teachers who I followed at the time would seldom ever mention was that you have to show up and take positive action!
Things don’t just happen by themselves…
The universe delivers only when you get involved with concrete, inspired and positive action. If you are sitting around waiting for deliverance without taking action, however powerfully you manifest, your wishes and desires will never materialize.
Also, and this is crucial for you to understand, the universe will deliver ONLY when you are ready to receive. Not before.
So be patient.
Work on improving your thoughts, emotions, and mindset. Embrace and learn from your fears. Live life to the fullest.
I assure you the universe will deliver and make good on your request.
Thanks for reading and staying with me this far!
Before I go, I would kindly request that you give consideration to the following questions:
Have you ever asked for something that you wanted with very badly, and, shortly after it was delivered to you?
Did you do this consciously or was it just a moment of desire? Perhaps desperation?
Were your prayers, your requests, answered?
What does wellness mean to you?
Do you have a different recipe for regaining control and finding your center again?
Please share your experiences in the comment box below. I read all comments and reply to them accordingly.
I hope you found this article useful and if you think it may help someone you know, please share it with them.