Spiritual Badassedness... whatever that is
During one of my many sleepless nights, I found an article from 2015 with the heading… wait for it: “How to Become a Spiritual Badass – The 20 Laws of Spiritual Power” – Catchy title, right? It got me to click on it… but my, oh my, was I in for a surprise. Now, not to completely throw the baby out with the bathwater, there was the usual sage advice included, like:
Respect people’s free will
Give other’s credit
Respect people’s space
Nothing wrong with that - no wait – that is great advice. Had all the points been in that line I would have been sharing the hell out of that article for all to read, however, there were also a couple of nuggets that literarily made me say WTF? out loud (and increasing in octave) more than once. By the time I was done I sounded like a mix between Michael Jackson and the Bee Gees.
I think what upset me more than anything was the knowledge that if someone who was just starting their spiritual journey read that particular article, they would run a mile and I would be running right there with them - throwing salt as I go and smoking a sage wand just for good bloody measure.
So, let us explore, just 6, of these nuggets of WTF wisdom that made me spray coffee over my laptop. I know… Master of Zen and composure I am not.
WTF 1 – Have perfect posture
I can appreciate the benefits of good posture as much as the next person but I have yet to see bad posture causing anyone anything other than perhaps a bad back or varicose veins. How little faith do you have to have in the Universe/Spirit/God to believe that your posture will hold you back from spiritual growth and how fickle is your belief system to make that a priority? When I start my meditation in the mornings I sit with my back straight but I can assure you by the time I am done with my meditation, I may just look like the Hunchback of Notredame. If I had to put any stock into this I would have to throw in the towel on my meditation practices right now. Slouch away if that is the way you sit and it is not physically hurting you. Your spiritual growth is not dependant on how you do something, but instead, what you do.
WTF 2 – Don’t itch
I know… take that in for a second.
Soooooo, according to the author people itch when they are feeling uncomfortable and scratching is never a sign of strength.
I just scratched the scar on my arm that itches due to nerve damage from an accident in 1990. Well damn, best I stop all spiritual practices right now.
Yeah… I think you can see that I call bullshit on this one and I am not even going to entertain explaining why this is bullshit. Go ahead – scratch that itch Buttercup.
WTF 3 – Your life’s purpose is to serve others
What’s wrong with that Karen? I hear you say in unison. Through many years of walking this path, I have come to realise one amazing fact. Your life’s purpose is to serve YOU because when you live your life serving your higher good it automatically makes you authentic enough to be able to serve others. When we serve others from this place of authenticity it cannot be for any reason other than love. Alternatively, when we serve others but neglect ourselves we are not coming from a place of love but instead, a place of ego.
WTF 4 – Eat healthy, organic food
Nothing wrong with that statement unless of course, you are not able to buy all your food at the local boutique store on a daily basis. This is the exact excerpt from the article –
“Spiritually powerful people use the highest quality fuel possible regardless of its price. They know it increases their spiritual power far beyond any other material things and they, therefore, make spending on healthy food a top priority.”
Yes, all of us have the responsibility of looking after our bodies and what we put into it but this is not a possibility for the person living on the street or for that matter, me. I, for one, refuse to believe that healthy, organic food is the only way to go if you want to grow spiritually or forgive me… Be a spiritual badass. How about just respecting the food you put into your body? Take the time to respect the farmer that grew the produce. Respect the process of growth that went into the product before it got to your plate (if you are lucky enough to have a plate). Respect how you treat the food while you are cooking it and be mindful while eating it. Just saying...
WTF 5 – Use non-violent communication
I agree you should never wish any ill will on anyone, however, I do not know one person that is a saint and never loses their shit. Personally, I don’t give words any power over me. Actions... now that is another matter altogether. You can swear at me all you want – I will give as good as I get because I am human. I admire people who have the ability to stay calm in most situations, but I know and honour myself enough to realise that I am not that person and that is okay.
Here is an innocent example…
My 11-year old son and I were in the shops not too long ago. Now, anyone who has had or has an 11-year old boy knows that shopping is not their favourite pastime. Hell, it’s not even my favourite pastime. He was hanging on my trolley and just being a typical annoying preteen. After a while, my frustration boiled over and whispered in his ear that I was going to rip off his arm and hit him with the wet end if he did not stop right away. – Mother of the year I am not.
Was my intent to rip off his arm and hit him with the wet end? Noooo.
Was I actually going to rip off his arm and hit him with the wet end? Once again… Noooo.
As a matter of fact, I got rid of my frustration and my son burst out laughing and stopped being a little shit. I realise now that this might not seem like an innocent example to most, but this is the relationship I have with my son. We do not mince words in our home – EVER. We are real. We are honest. We are brutal at times, but if nothing else, we are secure enough in who we are to be our authentic selves at all times and still know that our beliefs and spiritual growth will not be impacted by this. Always remember that your spiritual growth is not stunted by words but instead by intent and actions. I would rather have given this WTF nugget the heading of “Use non-violent intent at all times”.
WTF 6 – Tithe 10%
To be fair to the author, he did say that you should tithe to a church OR charity of your choice.
Now, to be fair to everyone else, I once again have to call bullshit. How about we just do what we can for others? I suppose this brings me back to the point I made about your life’s purpose is to serve YOU and in doing this while being authentic you will automatically serve others. It doesn’t matter if it is buying a warm soup and bread for a homeless man sitting outside the store on your way home or putting R20 in the collection tin for the local animal shelter. Do what you can, when you can and don’t expect anyone to see it. As a matter-of-fact… go out of your way to ensure no-one sees you doing it. That is giving without expecting anything in return. That is being authentic.
At the end of the day, we are all responsible for our own spiritual growth and the power it gives us personally but if nothing else I would like you to remember just this. When we live our lives authentically we cannot do anything but grow spiritually. There is no such thing as being spiritually powerful – there is, however, being spiritually authentic. It is really as simple as that. The ‘rules’ are all about love, respect and kindness and nothing more.