reality of spirit
Spiritual reality has many different layers and dimensions. Just as physical reality encompasses both inanimate and animate realities as well as vegetable, animal, and human consciousness, each with its own distinct experienced reality, the spiritual dimension is also comprised of different levels of consciousness with different experiences of reality. For most of us, we can't even imagine the realities experienced by the great saints, spiritual masters, sages, and prophets. However, there is a profound and deeply enticing spiritual dimension simply in the everyday world we all share in common.
Anyone who loves music, art, poetry, or mathematics, is experiencing the reality of spirit. In fact love itself is perhaps the most fundamental aspect of spiritual reality. Love is the essence of spirit and when love is experienced, spiritual reality is being experienced.
Just as physical reality has reliably consistent properties and characteristics, so does spiritual reality. Love is one of the primary attributes of spiritual reality. At its most basic, love is a bond which connects two souls with a deep sense of profound personal investment in the life and welfare of the other. What affects one affects the other.
Love however is more encompassing than merely the bond between two people. Anytime we feel a strong connection with anything, it is in some way an expression of love. There are people, creatures, objects, experiences, activities which resonate with the deepest personal core of our being. This resonance is the quality of love; it is an experience of spiritual reality.
But the natural quality of love is complex: it can affect one person more deeply than another; we can feel it more toward some than toward others; it can be fostered and cultivated like a skill that improves with practice. And some of the feelings we often call love can have a dark side and lead to any number of harmful attitudes and behaviors.
When love becomes an inner urge to give, to share, to feel for another as we feel for ourselves, it moves outward from our soul toward another. Giving love expands our own life to encompass the other and fosters the growing realization of our shared humanity. Our life experience is enlarged each time love reaches out to flow into another life. We begin to recognize that we are connected so intimately that what happens to any other is a part of our own life, whether for joy or sorrow. The love that awakens our inner spirit is a giving love, looking for ways to stretch itself out into the world.
When we love beautiful things, exciting things, wonderful experiences, delightful people it can begin as a desire to have that for ourself. This acquiring feeling of love is merely a desire to satisfy ourselves; it does not awaken the awareness of spiritual reality. As long as love is a desire seeking to acquire happiness, it will block awareness of spiritual reality. When we seek happiness for ourself we may or may not get it; when we seek happiness for others, it comes back to us increased. Love that flows outward rather than inward amplifies the experience of love and of spiritual reality.
As love increases, the sense of connection with all other things deepens and expands. As we grow into greater awareness of the spiritual reality, we experience greater connectedness in more and more ways to more and more of the people, creatures, beings and things of existence. And we begin to become increasingly aware of the divine presence within all.
That awareness of the divine within all things, circumstances, conditions, and experiences is another quality of spiritual reality. When the conscious mind begins to feel this awareness developing, it can become an intoxicating quest for that which is most deeply satisfying, empowering, enriching to the core of our being. We begin to sense that core being beneath all the changing thoughts, ideas, emotions, and urges of our mind.
Another of the characteristics of spiritual reality is that it is everywhere and in everything. It includes everything, permeates everything. Thus it is actually inconsistent to consider spirituality in opposition to physical reality. Every particle, wave, quality and aspect of the material is infused with spirit. Physical reality is embedded in spiritual reality and spiritual reality is embedded in physical reality. They are mutually interactive.
The forms, objects, beings and creatures of physical reality are all temporary manifestations of energy in different configurations. Change, transformation, dissolution and re-formation are the primary features of physical reality. It is precisely this that drives the processes of evolution and makes it so well suited for the generation of increasing levels of consciousness which has produced the full consciousness of the human intellect. Physical reality is the temporary scaffolding for the emergence of spirit. Spiritual reality is the permanent underlying foundation and final goal of the developing self-aware soul.
The mind has two different functions. The intellect is the function that interacts with physical reality; the heart is the function that interacts with spiritual realilty. Intellect guides human consciousness; spirit guides the intellect. The spirit will always be seeking to move us into a conscious living experience of spiritual reality.