Monday, October 22, 2007

What's In A Name

With the popularity of “New Age” thinking and the internet, there has been a great deal of confusion. The old words have taken on new meanings, for example Avatar referred to an enlightened being in human form (The Buddha) but is now refers to an icon or animation used to represent a participant used in Internet chat and games. A spiritual person was one who pursued a way of life in accordance with the highest principles and morals, in a search for greater understanding of the mysteries of life. Now, the word is used to denote those who talk to the spirits of dead people, conduct séances, and such.

In the minds of many, religion and spirituality are synonymous. When discussing the role of spirituality in political leaders, we invite argument if we do not first define the terms we are using in clear and concise terms. A recent group discussion made that abundantly clear. The discussion centered around the role of religion in government, when the topic was actually the role of spirituality in those who govern. After some clarification we discovered we were all in agreement that we believe our secular leaders should hold spiritual ideals (in accordance with the highest principles and morals) which transcends different religions and formalized codes of belief. Religions, by their very nature are human interpretations of the will of The Creator. The basic moral structure has been set down long ago and was meant to help us live in harmony with each other across barriers of language, race, religion and politics.
This all caused me to start thinking about the need to bring the spiritual and physical into harmony, to strive for a common spiritual code that inevitably links us all.
Having Journeyed for a long time, I have come to a number of realizations, one of which I quote regularly. There are many paths up the mountain, all lead to the same place...the top. As the various paths converge, the physical, human trappings fall away and we discover that we are all brothers under the skin. Anyone on a spiritual path of discovery will find that they share the same goals and aims as others who are searching for enlightenment. This dissolves the perceived barriers between "good people" regardless of the vehicle that has brought them to their present realizations.
Many years of examining the wider paths up the mountain has convinced me that when these paths are put under the microscope, they share the same goals, the same spiritual truths. The only caveat is that there are false trails out there that can trick a seeker into believing that they are following a true spiritual leader. We must all examine the truths we find to ensure that they are actually truths. When we find a truth, we must listen to our inner self. That self knows all and if we listen to it, we will not go wrong. Meditation can put us in touch with the inner self if we so desire.
We each have our own path to follow, and must take responsibility for following it.


jim said...

I just wrote a long piece on this post, a great post and right on, Zareba, concerning this language problem, then the blogger mechanism lost it. I will compose it elsewhere and drop it off here soon in the near future.

Love and Peace in the best possible ways Zareba, to you and yours.

Kathy said...

I loved reading this! great points.

Thank you Zareba (((hugs)))

Kathy said...

I found this just now on the Daily Zen site and it reminded me of what you posted, so i thought I'd share it with you, i think you'll like it.

"It is the one who is without obsession who is noble. Just do not act in a contrived manner; simply be normal. When you go searching elsewhere outside yourself, your whole approach is already mistaken. You just try to seek buddhahood, but buddhahood is just a name, an expression. Do you know the one who is doing the searching?"

- Lin Chi (d 867?)

Zareba said...

Hi Jim. I hope you can find or recreate your comment. Your comments are always thoughtful and make me think as well.

May you find peace, my friend


Zareba said...

Hi Kathy. You are right. Thank you for sharing it. I do like it. I find a lot of the Buddhist texts echo what I believe. If I had to be part of some religion or society, it would have to be Buddhist, as it is closest to my own heart. However, while progressing up the path, the more one sees that there is truth in all paths...all lead to the top, to enlightenment.