3 Steps to Lead a More Spiritual Life in a Superficial Society
This article has kindly been written by Mónica Esgueva. A short bio can be found at the end of the article. Enjoy!
Being on a spiritual path means recognizing that you are not your body, your thoughts, your job title, your possessions, or the relationships you have. You are a spirit living an earthly experience. You are part of the Creator manifested in a human form right now. Before that, you were an energy being, a spark of light and love.
You once decided to become human to enrich your soul and bring back that wealth of wisdom and compassion to the Universal Consciousness.
The difficult thing is to live in a world of limitations and understand that you are infinite; to go through the veil of forgetfulness and feel deep inside your true divine nature; to be surrounded by shallowness and not succumb to the ego’s tricks.
Facing hardship, making mistakes and having shortcomings are not errors in the system or your own faults. They are there by higher design. And they are your choice. This is so hard to accept for so many people. Why does God allow a child to die? Why do we have to go through so much adversity? Why do we have to overcome so many obstacles? Why is there so much injustice?
From the ego standpoint, nothing really makes sense. From the higher Self perspective, everything happens for a reason, everything offers a valuable lesson. Nothing is terrible or good, as they are just two sides of the same coin. Complementary aspects that are here to promote the needed lessons in this dual world.
Your free will is the tool that enables you to make choices and learn through suffering, or not. Creating suffering for yourself or others will set in motion the law of karma, which will make you learn by experiencing the consequences of your actions.
Human beings need pressure to develop. We require tests to check how we are progressing in our inner abilities. Without the challenges, we become complacent. It is just too easy to get stuck in our old habits and comforts, sleeping in our laurels. The way we respond to obstacles is essential for gaining knowledge. Those are opportunities to develop our virtues.
The whole process is agreed upon by our soul, who wants to progress and improve all its traits. Evolution in consciousness is the crucial purpose of our lives.
Unfortunately, not many people are aware of it. It is so easy to get lost in the earthly labyrinth of greed, superficial distractions and sheer materialism. Especially because we are taught since childhood that physical survival is paramount and material success is the greatest answer to all our problems. Achievement is portrayed as the escape from the existential vacuum of a life without depth.
We are constantly brainwashed into believing that competition is the way to get ahead in a world where scarcity is pervasive. Those false premises are repeated so persistently that we end up believing well-packed lies.
How do you get unhooked?
1. By uprooting fear
Being obsessed with oneself only feeds fear. Fear of not getting what you want. Fear of losing what you already earned. Fear of being hurt or stolen. Fear of not having enough. Fear of others’ actions. Fear of what the future may bring. Fear of sickness. And ultimately, fear of death.
You have to keep a fragile ego safe, which always feels threatened by the outside world. Its only defense is accumulation and power over others. It believes that by occupying that position, it will be spared from pain and annihilation. It is obvious that this will never happen. Pain is inescapable on Earth, and the ego passes with the body. No amount of wealth and power will prevent it.
The best antidote to fear is understanding that you are immortal and that nobody and nothing can really cause you any lasting harm. Trusting that the Universe has your back is also key. Like attracts like. Having faith in your ability to deal with anything that may come your way and maintaining the faith that you are never really alone will bring the resources you need at the right time.
2. By going from individualistic values to service-oriented ones
Pursuing self-interest relentlessly causes anxiety and anguish. You can never relax because the competition is ubiquitous. We have been indoctrinated that we must fight for our right to exist and climb the social status ladder by any means available.
Since the bonds with family and community have been maliciously severed, we are led to feel left alone in the jungle. We are often reminded that it is every man for himself. In a tough world, you need to toughen up and protect what is yours. No time to think about others. No interest in contemplating the effects of our actions in others. If nobody genuinely cares for you, why would you have to care for others?
The exit is to break free from this twisted – and pervading – set of beliefs. Regardless of how people usually think and behave, you should be certain that the only way to evolve is by helping your brother. Separation is an illusion of this dimension. The reality is the oneness of all. We are all a big family. Living with an open-heart and motivated by your contribution to the whole will go a long way.
3. By undoing your programs
We have been brainwashed all our lives. There are many mechanisms within our culture that are aimed at taking control of our minds. TV programs are called programs for a reason. Mainstream media uses information as a weapon to scare the population. Social media tends to spread triviality and low vibrational values. Movies and series that are broadcast convey aggression and negativity, which can become entrenched in your subconscious.
This all ends up having an unconscious impact on your thoughts and behaviors. You live on autopilot, following mass trends like a sleepwalker, parroting what you hear self-proclaimed experts say. Therefore, you surrender your free will.
If you become aware of it and avoid letting your mind be polluted, it does not have to be like this.
Firstly, turn off the TV. Don’t waste your precious time scrolling down Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook mindlessly. Be careful about the movies and series you watch. Get rid of the need to be entertained to find some comfort.
Question everything coming from external sources. Examine your thoughts and beliefs, where did you pick them up from? Are they based on what you know to be true, or on hear-saying? Don’t take anything at face value, regardless of how popular the idea may be. Remain open to new ideas. Use discernment.
The guidance is always present, and you can find moments of silence to connect with it. And test all messages you receive. If they provoke fear and negativity, close the door immediately. If they state facts that may be perceived as unpleasant but are ultimately uplifting, they are coming from a wholesome place.
Mónica Esgueva is the author of 8 self development books published in Spain and Latin America, including the bestseller ‘Mindfulness’. She studied with great spiritual masters, such as the Dalai Lama, for ten years in India and Nepal. She is known for combining the best parts of Eastern and Western spiritual currents as well as being a coach, spiritual guide, regressions therapist, lecturer, visionary artist, teacher, and economist.
She was honored as one of the Top 100 Women Leaders in Spain and one of the Top 10 “Thinkers and Experts Awards” in 2014. Besides her native Spain, she has lived in Paris, London, Tanzania, and Asia.