The light and the background has been added to this progression of Reaching for the Light. I’m not too happy with the armour as it looks quite rough. That will be the next area where I’ll put my attention.
One of the frustrations of living in a physical body is the difficulty in linking up our body mind spirit and Soul. We have an inbuilt desire to be happy which could also be seen as a desire to link these aspects together. Within each of these aspects we have a variety of choices. We are often confused by the choices available to us. Do we use this idea or that insight? Can we trust this feeling or go with a logical approach? Do we go with the flow of life or stay focused on the goal we have set for ourselves? How can we cut through this confusion and link body mind spirit and Soul?
Firstly, let’s define each aspect.
Body Our human body, our physical body which we use to move around our physical world. With its senses we can interact with the physical world. We use our eyes to see, our ears to hear, our touch to feel, our mouths to taste and our nose to smell. All these senses feed information to our mind.
Mind Mind, is the part that gathers all the information from the senses and decides what we do with it. It uses logic to come to a decision about the information and then suggests what to do next. For example, we look at and feel a piece of fruit to see if it is ripe, we smell it and we taste it. Our mind uses memory, one of its allies, to remember similar fruit from previous experiences. It measures the current piece of fruit against that, if it is happy with the sight, touch and smell, it suggests we taste it. Depending on how it tastes we’ll get a decision to either continue eating or else get rid of the fruit.
Spirit Spirit, is the element which holds our worlds together. We as individuals can just about control our bodies so Spirit looks after the planets, the environment, the way things work together and keeping all the atoms spinning in the right direction. Other names for Spirit are, the Holy Ghost, the Life-force, the Universe, the God Force, the Force, etc.
Soul Soul is an element of ourselves we often overlook. We can get a glimpse of It through our subconscious, Its way of communicating with us. It is the true, happy, loving part of ourselves which is eagerly awaiting us to link together body mind spirit and Soul.
We know our body quite well and our mind is used on an ongoing basis. Our understanding of Spirit can vary from person to person, but most of us are aware of some force or power beyond our control working in our lives. Our awareness of Soul is generally a bit fuzzy. While we can feel the love and happiness coming from It, Soul is often lost among the trials of life which keep our focus on the physical world and distract us from seeing the subtleness of Soul in our lives.
How can we link body mind spirit and Soul? Working on and developing our awareness of Soul is probably the easiest way of balancing and linking all of our inner and outer aspects together. Soul is the loving and happy part of ourselves. It has a better perspective on all our worlds. It is living in and working with Spirit all the time. Soul’s natural home is in heaven, in Spirit.
If we can make a conscious effort to link with Soul we’ll be using our mind to explore Soul’s worlds. We can do this a number of ways.
Contemplation / Meditation We can spend time on a regular basis just wondering about Soul, what part of us is Soul? How does it interact with our worlds? What is It? This is a little like daydreaming. We take time by ourselves to explore this concept. It is like attending a regular spiritual class where, our mind is the student and Soul is our teacher. We need to get to know It first before we can begin to understand It.
Singing a holy word The Higher Power, Allah or God communicates with us through sound and light. By singing a holy word or a word that is special to us we are using sound one of these characteristics of God. Here are a few suggestions of holy words: HU, a love song to God used in ancient Egypt, by Sufis, in other cultures and by modern day members of Eckankar. Allah is the most frequently used name of God in Islam. Alleluia, a combination of Allah and HU. Brahman, the Hindu name for God. Waheguru, meaning Wonderful Teacher bringing light to remove darkness, is considered the greatest among Sikhs. Yahweh and Elohim are the Jewish names for God.
Letting Love Flow As Soul lives in a state of love, by letting love flow through our lives we are linking with It. This love is the pure kind which doesn’t require anything in return. We do things because we love a person, animal or Soul. We do things because we love to do them and they bring a benefit to us and those around us. Love is the key that will unlock the secrets to happiness and bring us to the wisdom of Soul.
Linking body mind spirit and Soul will bring a balance to our lives. We will bring more of Soul’s features into our lives. Features like, happiness, understanding, peacefulness, contentment and the best one of all, love. Using any of these techniques will help us renew our connection to Soul and balance the other aspects of our lives.
Wishing you love in all aspects of your body mind spirit and Soul.
“The movement of Soul beyond the human senses is such a natural process that one is likely to overlook it in its simplicity.” Harold Klemp
“The desire to escape normal life and do something different that engages the mind, body and spirit is in all of us.” Clare Jones
“Seek a sanctuary, Respect it, as it is holy, Walk into it with a bare mind, bare feet and plain clothing, Nurture your body, mind and spirit through a healing ritual, Leave it with a pure heart until you find your way to it again.” Master Jin Kwon
“If you nurture your mind, body, and spirit, your time will expand. You will gain a new perspective that will allow you to accomplish much more.” Brian Koslow
“Enlighten the people generally, and tyranny and oppressions of body and mind will vanish like evil spirits at the dawn of day.” Thomas Jefferson
“I can only think of music as something inherent in every human being - a birthright. Music coordinates mind, body and spirit.” Yehudi Menuhin
“Body and mind, and spirit, all combine, To make the Creature, human and divine.” Ella Wheeler Wilcox
“We transcend the illusions of body and mind, and the separation perpetuated by these illusions. In this dimension, we re-discover the nature of Love for the One Spirit, of which we are all a part.” Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh
“True silence is the rest of the mind, and is to the spirit what sleep is to the body, nourishment and refreshment.” William Penn
“I certainly believe that being in contact with one's spirit and nurturing one's spirit is as important as nurturing one's body and mind. We are three dimensional beings: body, mind, spirit.” Laurence Fishburne
“I firmly believe that all human beings have access to extraordinary energies and powers. Judging from accounts of mystical experience, heightened creativity, or exceptional performance by athletes and artists, we harbor a greater life than we know. There we go beyond those limited and limiting patterns of body, emotions, volition, and understanding that have been keeping us in dry-dock. Instead we become available to our capacity for a larger life in body, mind, and spirit. In this state we know great torrents of delight.” Jean Houston
“I just refer to myself as being Spirit, Mind and Body like everybody else and working toward the mastery of my natural divinity and the healing of my emotional mind.” Leonard Orr
“Many people do not realize the toll stress can have on their lives or that mental health is key to overall health in general. Caring for both the mind and the body not only helps boost a person's spirits but can help lead to a healthier, happier and more productive life.” Cynthia Wainscott
“As a rule, the mind, residing in a body that has become weakened by pampering, is also weak, and where there is no strength of mind there can be no strength of soul.” Mahatma Gandhi
“When the soul looks out of its body, it should see only beauty in its path. These are the sights we must hold in mind, in order to move to a higher place.” Yusef Lateef
This picture is progressing nicely. Now that I’ve got the armour sorted out I’m now working on the lighting and the colours for the scene. It’s going to be a grey background with light coming from above.
When things are tough, when we have problems and challenges, how can we find blessings in those times? We could have financial challenges, relationship problems, health issues or any variety of situations to deal with at this moment.
Now let’s look at what has happened in the past. Have we been in a similar situation previously? How did we get out of the situation then? Can we apply a similar solution to our current position?
We have survived Before we go any further, let’s be aware that we have been in similar situations previously and we have survived them. We have gotten through them. While we were in the middle of the challenge it looked like there was no solution but we did get through it. We have survived every challenge we have ever met in our lives. We are still here alive and in reasonable shape. There is no reason to think that we won’t get through this current challenge.
Some of our issues may not have been completely sorted out. We may have done enough to get away from them but left the core issue unresolved. These kinds of issues can be a challenge to overcome because we have avoided them in the past and we want to continue avoiding them. We resist going near them. This attitude of ours makes the issue bigger than it really is.
We have now created two challenges, one is the issue itself and the other is the fear of it or our resistance to sorting it out. Our mental picture of the situation is a mess, we can’t seem to solve it and it can be something we don’t even want to look at, let alone deal with.
The easiest part The way to solve a big challenge is to deal with it a little at a time. Find the easiest part of the challenge and deal with that. It may take time to handle this first part but it is a start. Once we’ve got that easy thing under control, let’s have a look at the next easiest thing. If we keep chipping away at the challenge, there will come a time where the complete issue has been dealt with. It just takes, time, patience with the issue and ourselves, and the desire and determination to deal with the challenge.
A technique we can use to bring a little more happiness into our lives in challenging times is to be in the moment. Be aware of who we are, where we are and the blessings we have now, at this moment of our life.
We are not focused on reality Life is a long string of moments strung together to create our lives. At any moment we can be focused on the past, the future or now. If we are looking to the past we may be wishing for the happier times or regretting an event or we may be influenced by something that happened in the past.
If we are focused on the future, we may be looking forward to the possibility of a happier time, we may be fearful of a challenge ahead, we may be trying to orchestrate our way to a position in the future. Whether we are focused on the past or the future, we need to recognise that we are not focused on reality. We are looking at something that is over and done with in the past or our idea of possible outcomes in the future. Neither of these are real, now at this moment.
Where we are now While these things do affect us, we can lessen their influence on us by focussing our attention on where we are now at this moment. Let’s take a little time to explore where we are now.
So where are we now? I am reading this article. I am breathing. I’m focused on these words to see where they will lead...
Can we focus on this moment, now? Let’s listen to the world around us. What sounds do we hear? What pictures do they create in our mind? Now let’s observe the place where we are. What colours are around us, what shapes, what rooms or buildings are we in? What position are we in, are we standing, sitting or lying down? Let’s just observe these sounds, images and thoughts.
Can we see any gifts or blessings in our current situation? Are we safe, fed, clothed, comfortable, among friends, etc. There are many other blessings personal to us which we can count such as, special people in our lives, pets, position, surroundings, and love. Writings, poetry, music and songs are more blessings we can count. The HU Song is a blessing which can bring us even more blessings.
HU Song HU is a very positive sound which opens a channel between us in the physical world and Soul deep in our inner worlds. HU is a song from Soul’s home. Our physical world is bound in time and space, the past, present and future. Soul lives in the moment, in the now. It can only be in the now. The HU song helps us reconnect with Soul, our true happy loving self. By reconnecting with Soul we get a higher viewpoint of our life and our situations. From this perspective we can often see different aspects of our challenges and sometimes we may even see a possible solution.
Now is the time to take five to fifteen minutes to be in the moment, to connect with Soul. Where ever we are we can pretend to spend a little time with on this article but more so on ourselves, exploring this moment. If we are alone we can close our eyes, sing HU and focus on this moment and the blessings we have here and now. If we are among people, we can sing the HU song quietly within ourselves and observe the blessing surrounding us. Let’s look for the good things and the positive side of what is with us now.
“If you keep in mind that love and love alone is the reason for living, it will calm your heart and free you from your worries.” Harold Klemp
“Life is a challenge, meet it! Life is a dream, realize it! Life is a game, play it! Life is Love, enjoy it!” Sri Sathya Sai Baba
“There is never time in the future in which we will work out our salvation. The challenge is in the moment; the time is always now.” James A. Baldwin
“Death is a challenge. It tells us not to waste time... It tells us to tell each other right now that we love each other.” Leo Buscaglia
“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” Martin Luther King, Jr.
“Women, like men, should try to do the impossible. And when they fail, their failure should be a challenge to others.“ Amelia Earhart
“The most glorious moments in your life are not the so-called days of success, but rather those days when out of dejection and despair you feel rise in you a challenge to life, and the promise of future accomplishments.” Gustave Flaubert
“I was told to challenge every spiritual teacher, every world leader to utter the one sentence that no religion, no political party, and no nation on the face of the earth will dare utter: 'Ours is not a better way, ours is merely another way.” Neale Donald Walsch
“My greatest challenge has been to change the mindset of people. Mindsets play strange tricks on us. We see things the way our minds have instructed our eyes to see.” Muhammad Yunus
“There is nothing like a challenge to bring out the best in man.” Sean Connery
“Be not afraid of growing slowly, be afraid only of standing still.” Chinese proverb
“Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.” Joshua J. Marine
“Difficulties are meant to rouse, not discourage. The human spirit is to grow strong by conflict.” William Ellery Channing
“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Don't be afraid your life will end; be afraid that it will never begin.” Grace Hansen
“Throughout the centuries there were men who took first steps down new roads armed with nothing but their own vision.” Ayn Rand
“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” Winston Churchill
This image is a render from the Carrara, the 3D software I use. It shows our heroine with her Celtic armour. I’ve spent a lot of time designing the Celtic design and then applying it to her body so it fits comfortably. It still needs some adjustments but the basic look is okay.
These days it is hard to know where to find spiritual advice. Some of us say prayers and hope we are doing right, some go to priests, rabbis, and church elders, some go to fortune tellers and tarot card readers, some go to doctors for a cure to their inner pain which is now manifesting as a physical pain and some go to trusted friends and family members who seem to be wise. These sources of advice can be helpful and beneficial, but they are not always available to us. Is there a source of spiritual advice and wisdom we can turn to whenever we need it?
An excellent source Soul, the happy, loving and caring part of ourselves, is an excellent source of spiritual advice and wisdom. There is an art in connecting with Soul but it’s an art that we can easily learn.
Spirit communicates with us through life around us. This could be nature, the weather, plants, animals and people. If we request an answer to a query from Spirit we need to be observant and keep an eye out for the answer. If we can turn up our awareness and tune into Spirit we will find gems of wisdom and spiritual advice coming from various sources.
Answers to our questions For example, if we asked a question about which direction we should take, the answer may be observed in the way the branches of a tree point, or how an arrow is formed on the ground in front of us. An animal may pass by or approach us, possibly sparking ideas or memories of situations we experienced previously. In those memories may lay the direction we should go. Some people may contact us and in their conversation we find a subtle hint, advice or definite instructions or recommendations for the direction to take. A spiritual brain storm Another source of insights can be a gathering of like minded individuals which can help increase our connection with the subject we are discussing. When those seeking spiritual advice come together in a group or class, the wisdom within the group is magnified. Our focus is now on seeking answers to our questions. The answers can come from other members directly or the combination of answers from several people. It can become a spiritual brain storm with comments and suggestions sparking other ideas and insights. Our understanding of a solution may be different from the person who suggested it and when we discuss it, we give them an added insight into their solution.
Contemplation Contemplation is another excellent source of spiritual advice. This is where we sit quietly observing our thoughts as they come to our attention. By keeping a detached approach to our thoughts, we allow ourselves to rise above them and see them from a different angel. By observing them in a loving way we move our viewpoint to Soul’s level which has a broader view of life than we do on our usual mental level. We move our awareness from mind to Soul, the higher, happy and loving part of ourselves. From this higher viewpoint we see things in a different light, from a different angle which gives us a new perspective on our challenges and situations. Connection with Spirit If we can develop our own connection with Spirit and do spiritual exercises to maintain the connection, we can then have access to spiritual advice on an ongoing basis. Spending between fifteen to thirty minutes a day connecting with Soul will bring us a lot of spiritual advice on a daily basis. Once this becomes a habit for us, it also becomes an essential tool for living our lives in a happier, wiser and more spiritual way.
Our best source of spiritual advice and advice for all aspects of life can be found within us, in our loving heart, Soul. We just need to give ourselves time each day to connect with that wisdom.
“All the help that comes to us is form the Holy Spirit, whether it comes in a dream or through the help of a friend or doctor. The trick is the discrimination you need: to tell what’s good for you and what’s not good for you. This comes by listening to your heart.” Harold Klemp
“Write down the advice of him who loves you, though you like it not at present.” Proverb
“Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn't.” Erica Jong
“I have found the best way to give advice to your children is to find out what they want and then advise them to do it.” Harry S Truman
“Parents can only give good advice or put them on the right paths, but the final forming of a person's character lies in their own hands.” Anne Frank
“I always advise people never to give advice.” P. G. Wodehouse
“A word to the wise ain't necessary, it's the stupid ones who need the advice.” Bill Cosby
“The true secret of giving advice is, after you have honestly given it, to be perfectly indifferent whether it is taken or not, and never persist in trying to set people right.” Logan Pearsall Smith
“Advice is like snow; the softer it falls, the longer it dwells upon, and the deeper it sinks into, the mind.” Samuel Taylor Coleridge
“If I were again beginning my studies, I would follow the advice of Plato and start with mathematics.” Galileo Galilei
"If you have a lot of tension and you get a headache, take the advice on the aspirin bottle: "Take an aspirin" and "Keep away from children". " Anon
“I owe my success to having listened respectfully to the very best advice, and then going away and doing the exact opposite.” G. K. Chesterton
“Many receive advice, only the wise profit from it.” Publilius Syrus
“A good scare is worth more than good advice.” Horace
“Don't give a woman advice; one should never give a woman anything she can't wear in the evening.” Oscar Wilde
What do we mean by Spiritual Leadership? Spiritual would suggest that it relates to the spiritual or inner side of our lives. It has something to do with our understanding of and relationship with the Higher Power, God, Allah, Sugmad, the Life-force or Holy Spirit. Spiritual leadership relates to the principles of how we live our lives, the core values which help lead us in a given direction.
What could these core values be? Here are some suggestions:
Love Having a warm personal and unconditional love for those close to us. Having a love for life and how it leads us along the path of our lives, teaching us and giving us experiences.
Responsibility Having responsibility for our actions and being prepared to deal with the consequences of what we set in motion. Doing what we say we would do. Keeping our word.
Gratitude Gratitude and appreciation to our family, friends, colleagues, work mates and neighbours which help us recognise the gifts others have given of their service, time and love. Gratitude brings happiness to both the giver and receiver.
Humility In the eyes of Spirit or God we are all equal, however in our physical life we may have advantages and disadvantages compared to others. We are all striving to find happiness, heaven and our spiritual home. We will all reach it at some point. We are all equal in that quest. If we can see others as Soul, we’ll see that no one is superior to another.
Service to others Humility also comes from being of service to others. There is a felling of being worthwhile, of making a contribution to our friend, community or workplace. Giving service helps to turn on the flow of love within us.
Freedom Giving others freedom to live their lives gives us freedom too. If we insist on imposing some limiting conditions on others, we are then required to implement those conditions and our freedom is reduced because we now have this task to perform. There is a balance to achieve between being responsible for our own lives and a allowing others freedom to live theirs. We cannot encroach on others or their property nor can they encroach on ours. This is something we have to balance on an ongoing basis.
Learning Learning is an aspect of humility. We recognise that we do not know everything, we are learning all the time. We learn form those around us, whether we perceive them as superior or inferior to us. Life is constantly presenting us with opportunities to learn.
Strength of character Spiritual leadership requires strength of character. We have to be able to live by and defend our beliefs and principles.
Sharing Leaders seem to give the impression that they do it all themselves. They lead the way. However if we look a good leader we’ll see that they share their jobs, delegate tasks to others and work with people who often have better skills than they do in particular areas. By sharing the ideas, goals and tasks involved in a project the group benefit by being of service and achieving their goal. Connecting with Spirit To be spiritual we have to have some connection with spirit. We may believe that our principles are based on something spiritual but we need to somehow be able to connect with Spirit so that we can be sure that our thinking is true, loving and spiritual. We can connect with Spirit via contemplation, meditation, prayer or spending time being aware of and appreciating life around us.
Another way of being spiritual is doing things with love. Not only so that a person will love us, but doing it for love because it is the best thing to do for all concerned at this moment. It doesn’t matter who benefits because whatever we do with love will brighten our world a little more. There will be a little more love in the word due to our spiritual leadership.
One key element Having covered the core values above we realise that spiritual leadership is really an inner skill which we are working on an ongoing basis. We are learning all the time, discovering new skills and responsibilities. With the regular practise of being grateful, being of service and giving freedom to others we learn humility. A regular connection with Spirit and sharing the blessings we receive helps give us strength of character and develop our inner spiritual leadership.
Of course the one key element which will help us in every aspect of our lives including spiritual leadership, is love. Giving love in a loving and unconditional way will lead us to spiritual happiness, the goal we are all striving for.
Wishing you love on your path to spiritual leadership.
“Youth are the leaders of tomorrow. Those who practice the Spiritual Exercises of Eck will know how to lead by the example of love instead of the methods of force and lies, which are the standards of leaders under the spell of the negative force.” Harold Klemp
“Spiritual leadership is the opposite of what most people think. Spiritual leadership is servant leadership. Jesus Christ Himself taught us, "just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many" (Matthew 20:28). Jesus was most definitely a leader. He was the leader of the twelve disciples and a much greater group of followers beyond them (Luke 10:1-17). Jesus did not lead by giving out orders or by supervising. Jesus led by being a servant and serving alongside of His followers.” www.allaboutgod.com/spiritual-leadership.htm
“The spiritual leader's task is to move people from where they are to where God wants them to be.” Henry and Richard Blackaby
“There is no such thing as a self made spiritual leader. He is able to influence others spiritually only because the Spirit is able to work in and through him to a greater degree than in those he leads.” J. Oswald Sanders
“Spiritual-based (leadership): From this view, the nature of business itself is transformed - so that the primary purpose of business and leadership is spiritual fulfillment and selfless service to society , where both are motivated from the Source of creation. Wealth creation is no longer the goal ; it becomes a means for enabling and sustaining this purpose. Business leaders promote the spiritual fulfillment of everyone touched by the business: Employees, customers, suppliers, shareholders, and society. Likewise, business leaders develop selflessness in their service to society, seeing the Source in all whom they serve.” William and Debra Miller
“If two or three persons should come with a high spiritual aim and with great powers, the world would fall into their hands like a ripe peach.” Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Leadership is based on a spiritual quality; the power to inspire, the power to inspire others to follow.” Vince Lombardi
“Everyone can be great because anyone can serve.” Martin Luther King
"An enlightened leadership quality is honesty. The best leaders don't need to stretch the truth. Spiritual leadership recognizes that being honest is the best way to gain respect. There's no room for dishonest behavior in enlightened leadership.” Diana Lynn
"When you feel for money, it is Business Leadership. When you feel for Science and Technology, it is Technology Leadership. When you feel for your People, it is Social Leadership. And finally when you feel for your true Self, and feel for the same spirit within everybody, it is Spiritual Leadership.” www.enlightenedleadershipnow.com
“I have three precious things which I hold fast and prize. The first is gentleness; the second is frugality; the third is humility, which keeps me from putting myself before others. Be gentle and you can be bold; be frugal and you can be liberal; avoid putting yourself before others and you can become a leader among men.” Lao-Tzu
“Leadership is doing what is right when no one is watching.” George Van Valkenburg
“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.” John Quincy Adams