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Walking the Spiritual Path
By: Rev. Dr. William Wong

 

You've just found "It"!  You've had the big "Oh Yea"!  Or maybe you had it once, lost "It" and now you're returning to "It", knowing "It" had been the right road after all.  At first, you're happy just to have found the path. But, after a while things can get confusing - awfully confusing.

A seeker is a student.  We progress on our way by accumulating and applying knowledge. (Just the accumulation of it is not enough.  You've got to live the information 1) To see it's validity and    2) to attain the transformation promised by the information).  The problem comes when the seeker's gaze meets with the hundreds of esoteric teachers, schools and philosophies.  Which one(s) is right? Can they all be right, could some be deceptions? If Truth is Truth then why  isn't there one path to Truth?

In essence, you're back to the same problem religionists face; which one is right.  But the Spiritual Seeker has an advantage over the Religionist:  The religious person is not generally a student.  The religionist  seeks mostly to worship, to bow down before an immense deity and supplicate their way to some anthropomorphic paradise.  The spiritual seeker on the other hand is not merely looking to worship, he's looking to bond; seeking that which many religions have in their teachings but have forgotten about - to be one with the Creator.  For that end being a thrall (mindless slave), bowed down in frightful worship accomplishes nothing.  Again, information and application are the keys.

The seeker is a student and is not making a commitment to a "faith".  He has the leeway to take teachings from a particular source and when he thinks he's had enough of those teachings or, when they stop ringing true to his heart, he has the option of leaving.   After saying "Thank you for bringing me this far", the seeker again searches for new teachings.  It's that simple.  People are like computers, the programming that will work for one brand won't work for another.  In this instance the seeker is writing his own program from scratch, not just down loading someone else's programming into his mind.

Many insecure spiritual seekers need the comfort, sameness and stability of a regimented course of study.  These seekers become tied (shackled is more like it), to "Living Masters".  They make a religionist's commitment to buy lock, stock and barrel all of one teachers philosophy to the exclusion of all others.  Some of these slaves see their way out.  More followers still remain thralls of those teachers who seem to become more megalomaniacal day by day.  Teachers who insist on chaining their students to themselves have not passed their Satsushima.  Satsushima is a test of worthiness poised either by oneself, one's family of one's rulers.  In believing they are "It" instead of a path to the "It", they become super control freaks needing constantly to command, manipulate and be glorified.  If you've been on the path long enough then you've seen teachers of great spiritual promise turn into greedy materialistic dictators.

From these teachers, study their early work.  See what came from the heart.  Leave be their later thinking; you need to walk the path free and alone.  The leg irons set on a spiritual seeker are not locked in place by the teacher, they are voluntarily locked in place by the student!  Don't lead yourself "into temptation".

Listen to teacher with small followings around them; the ones with low or no overhead to support; the ones who are happy to be one of the many teachers you'll meet on the path.  These will answer your questions, fine tune your philosophy and practice and, see to your application of them.  Then such teachers will be happy when you proceed onward and away from them in your own direction.

It can't be emphasized enough that in seeking unity with the Creator you must stride the path alone.  While you may live and apply principles from mainly one school or teacher, you cannot attain your goal believing and applying their entire package to the exclusion of other thought.  Neither can you make your advancement contingent on the advancement of a "Master Teacher" or of a group.  You were born alone, your spiritual path will be trod alone, your attainment of mystical union will be made alone.

Group dynamics are deceptive; their energies no matter how powerful are strictly three dimensional and do not carry over into the mystical realm.  Period!  The use of group energy early on in seeking is good as the group helps to strengthen resolve and provide the examples of others who are further along on the path, but; after the seeker can walk instead of crawl, the groups must be left behind before they become an encumbrance to advancement.

So what are the keys to Mystical Union?  

  1. Constant study
  2. constant application
  3. meditation
  4. prayer
  5. truthfulness with oneself
  6. avoiding spiritual codependency
 
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