However many books are written about our spirituality, we have to come to terms with the fact that nobody has all the answers. Discovering our own spiritual truth is a lonely road and yet one that is largely dependent on others we meet on the way.
What do we really mean by spiritual truth? I have pondered on this question so many times and yet, although I find it difficult to express verbally, I am at peace with an inner knowing that is forgiving of my lack of intellectual expression. It seems wrong to raise a question that I can’t answer, and yet, from that admission alone perhaps emerges a clue.
We speak of my truth or your truth because the wisdom we unveil at any part of our journey can only be embraced by the traveler on that road. But the journey to discover our own truth doesn’t stop there. We have new terrain to cross and with it new experiences which, whilst enhancing the previous ones, may throw us into confusion once again when the light falls on a different part of our track. There is nothing purer than truth so our eyes must be very gradually acquainted – lest they are blinded by the brilliance of its illumination.
Living the Truth of Our Own Journey
Our life’s purpose cannot be mistaken for our spiritual truth; it is our life’s purpose – to remember that truth. It is for us to live the truth of our own journey; to take that of another may be a step backwards of our own path.
Any young person leaving full-time education with a clear concept of what he or she wants to do with their life is often regarded with envious respect. Wherever we live in the world, we have to plan our lives to a certain extent otherwise we will miss the opportunities that life offers us. If those who live in a country where fish is the main source of nourishment, clearly, the fishermen amongst them must plan to fish at the optimum time or their families will go hungry. They must mend their nets before the next trip or the fish will slip through them.
But in the Western world, our hours, days, months and years are spent planning. We plan for what we believe to be our purpose, and when we have either achieved or abandoned that which we were planning for, there is nothing left, so we start looking for another purpose to work towards.
When The Plan Doesn't Work Out
There is nothing wrong with planning for an achievable objective. Indeed, we encourage our young people to plan their lives, but what happens when the plan doesn’t go to order? We never prepare ourselves for that scenario because it is regarded as being negative at the onset and clearly if we set out to do something, we must have the intention to succeed.
But how many of us are able to anticipate the excitement of the ride, regardless of the outcome, trusting that we will have profited greatly for our efforts? Life rarely rewards our efforts in the perfect way we want it to, but our inner guide that led us there extracts with precision the lessons of enrichment for our soul.
Life is a ‘spiritual journey’ but only too often we give, what has almost become a cliché now, our casual lip service rather than our dedication to its truth. It has taken me sixty years of searching, questioning and suffering to discover that life isn’t a crisis, a competition or even more poignant – a race. I’m not even going anywhere. If I desire (as frequently I do), I can just sit in life in perfect harmony with that of which I am a part.
What Is Truth?
Truth is truth. It is the absolute state of what is and we come into this world never knowing anything else – until we are taught untruths.
I still recall a memory of my childhood when I was so rudely enlightened to the real truth about Father Christmas. To discover from a school friend that my father had been lying to me for so long was more than I could take. I wanted to put my hands over my ears and pretend that I hadn’t heard the truth confirmed, but it wasn’t merely the non-existence of Santa that was so upsetting. My own acceptance of truth had now moved goalposts. Everybody believes their father, don’t they? So now we have truth being questioned by trust.
Over the years I have chosen to accept the mystical figure of Father Christmas as, indeed, the true spiritual expression of Christmas itself – being its truest meaning. On our spiritual journey we frequently make our advances through experiences that seem the least spiritual in nature.
A child will rarely associate Santa with any more than the wonderful old man who magically knows what presents will delight him or her, but the true spiritual energy that is aroused within each child is rarely identified as more than seasonal exuberance.
Sharing the Universal Energy of Our Spiritual Connection
The joy of a spiritual celebration of any religion or culture can be shared, not only by its members, but all those who open their hearts to the joy of others. We stand apart only in our minds, but the joy we feel for each other is the expression of our spiritual connection and the beautiful energy therein. That wonderful energy has no culture, race, religion or politics. This is the same energy that is aroused between people during hard times, crisis times, wars and disasters. This is the universal energy – Love.
My acceptance or rejection of Santa’s real truth was just one of the many choices I’ve had to make, but I don’t think I’ve ever been so aware of these choices or of those available to me until I started to review the road I had been traveling. So rarely are any of us perfectly satisfied that every step in our life has been for the best. A frequent admission in conversation about one’s own life is that: ‘I should have gone to college; studied law; continued with my music’. Many people have regrets about all sorts of choices they have made, particularly when they find themselves apparently unable to fulfill that missed opportunity any more.
Regrets Imply Self-Understanding and Learning
I suppose I’ve been very fortunate that there has been no part of my life that I wished had been different – until life started to stand still for me. To have wished to change anything that is past is really a softer way of admitting regret. Regret suggests a much greater sense of self-understanding and thus learning, whilst to have wished it different somehow doesn’t own up to our own responsibilities.
It would be untrue to say that I haven’t had many heartaches on the way and many, many times wished that I didn’t have to be put through so much suffering, but there has always been an inner knowing and gratitude for the growth opportunities – be it after the event. It sounds as though I greeted each new challenge with the expectant delight of another new learning opportunity but, of course, it was quite the opposite.
I know now that if I had trusted my intuition more, life would have been a lot easier on me and, to some degree, would have spared me some of the aftermath. Interestingly, trust is not the word I should have used here because I’ve always known of its guidance, but when I didn’t like what it was advising – I preferred to try it my way.
Can Someone Else Show Us The Way?
No one can tell us how to live our lives or what choices to make along the way, so why do we look to others when we find ourselves in a difficult place? Perhaps the answer to this is that we sometimes believe that someone else can show us the way – just as we often believe that we can point out the right path for others? Perhaps we can help by offering advice based on our own experience; assistance from a trusted friend or advisor may be instrumental in the success of our search, but the wisdom that is so generously given doesn’t teach us the way – it facilitates our path.
The more knowledge we gain in our lives, the more discerning we may become with our choices, but we must remember that the wisdom of our soul can only be accessed through the window of experience. The learned professor is not necessarily a wise one, but one with much knowledge. We can read many books and seek all the masters, but we will never find what we are looking for without first finding our self. Then shall we transform knowledge into wisdom.
We Cannot Change The Past
However sorry or even remorseful we are for poor choices, we cannot change anything that went before. The future is only a projection of now and unless we change now – we will continue to regret it in its passing. And everything does pass.
As the day turns to night and the river flows under the bridge – all within the birth and ebb of the ever-moving wheel of life itself and with it – passes all suffering and all pain. But so must we remember that one day, one moment, the last of our opportunities passes too and we can never be sure quite when that time is due to arrive – in the present moment of Now.
Now is the time to surrender to our own being; now is the time to dissolve our own suffering – not tomorrow. Yesterday’s tomorrow is yet upon us and never will arrive, for the only moment we can live, learn, love and forgive is this very moment of Now.
©2013 Susan Sosbe. All Rights Reserved.
Reprinted with permission of the author. Published by O Books,
an imprint of John Hunt Publishing Ltd. www.o-books.com
Reflections - Beyond Thought: The Journey of a Lifetime
by Susan Sosbe.
About the Author
Susan Sosbe is a spiritual healer, counselor and a trained nurse and teacher. She teaches meditation and facilitates self-inquiry. Through her healing clinics, talks and as guest speaker to other spiritual groups, Susan has inspired many in England and abroad to realize their own potential and discover their own path. Now living in Eastleach, UK, her commitment to the humble role as messenger of hope and peace continues. Visit her website at www.reflectionsbeyondthought.com