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How Do You Stay Spiritually Healthy?

2016-05-15 12:23 PM | Dave

   You often see a checklist on how to maintain good health at your medical providers. Lately the more progressive health prescriptions even suggest relaxation through meditation.

   Lists have always been popular ways to visualize and organize our future. Maybe it is the doctor in Deepak Chopra that makes him one of the great list makers, in physical, emotional, and spiritual areas alike. In his book, Seven Spiritual Laws of Success, (itself a list!) he recommends making a list of your desires as a step towards achieving your goals (page 79).

   I know many of us have favorite quotes displayed where we’ll notice them while going through the day. Of course, another book or beautiful quote may not help us to maintain health and then grow spiritually if we don’t act on the inspiration. That’s why we like to post reminders to act.

   Here is a top ten of my quotes out of a collection that I reread or repeat to myself to cultivate spiritual health (and build a well-developed character). I keep them in a recipe box, a little Punjabi one (Kashmir, it says on the bottom) that I found in a thrift store. Others I keep pinned up on our kitchen cupboard, or on the refrigerator, held by a magnet. So here’s a spiritual checklist you may enjoy:

  1. Experience Joy: Do what gives you joy as a service!

   “No matter what causes it, whenever a little bubble of joy appears in your invisible sea of consciousness, take hold of it and keep expanding it. Meditate on it and it will grow larger … keep puffing at the bubble of joy until it breaks its confining walls and becomes the sea of joy.” (Metaphysical Meditations by Paramahansa Yogananda)

    2. See Possibilities:  

   “Remain open to an infinite number of unexpected possibilities which transcend your own imagination and capacity to plan.” (Thomas Merton)

   ("Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." ~ Thomas A. Edison)

   3. Learn Trust:

   “When Jesus turned to James, asking, ‘James, do you trust me?’ Of course James replied, "Yes, Master, I trust you with all my heart." Then said Jesus: "James, if you trust me more, you will be less impatient with your brethren. If you will trust me, it will help you to be kind to the brotherhood of believers. Learn to weigh the consequences of your sayings and your doings. Remember that the reaping is in accordance with the sowing. Pray for tranquility of spirit and cultivate patience. These graces, with living faith, shall sustain you when the hour comes to drink the cup of sacrifice.” (The Urantia Book, [The UB] 192:2.8.)

   “Open yourself to the Tao, then trust your natural responses; and everything will fall into place.” —Tao Te Ching, Verse 23

   4. Give Love:

   “In this world hate never yet dispelled hate. Only love dispels hate. This is the law, ancient and eternal.” (Dhammapada, Ch. 1) I once saw my daughter use this quotation in a speech she gave to her high school classmates. That was truly inspirational!

   5. Claim Spiritual Power:

   “With the goodness of God to desire our highest welfare, the wisdom of God to plan it, and the power of God to achieve it, what do we lack? Surely we are the most favored of all creatures.”

(Some Protestant confidence from A. W. Tozer)

   6. Have Courage:

   Jesus said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat, nor about your body, what you will put on. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! (Luke 12:22-24; expanded and repeated in The UB, 165:5.2)

   7. Practice Compassion/Empathy/Mercy:

“If your compassion does not include yourself it is incomplete.” Jack Kornfield, page 28 of Buddha’s Little Instruction Book.

   8. Seize the Service Opportunities That Come Your Way:

   “Service -- purposeful service, not slavery -- is productive of the highest satisfaction and is expressive of the divinest dignity. (The UB 28:6.17, P. 316)

   “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs; ask yourself what makes you come alive, and then go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” (Howard Thurman)

   9. Focus Concentration: “Lord I believe. Help thou my unbelief.”

   “Revelation teaches mortal man that, to start such a magnificent and intriguing adventure through space by means of the progression of time, he should begin by the organization of knowledge into idea-decisions; next, mandate wisdom to labor unremittingly at its noble task of transforming self-possessed ideas into increasingly practical but nonetheless supernal ideals, even those concepts which are so reasonable as ideas and so logical as ideals that the Adjuster dares so to combine and spiritize them … The co-ordination of idea-decisions, logical ideals, and divine truth constitutes the possession of a righteous character …” (The UB, 101:6.7)

   “A small amount of focused concentration can expand into the subconscious mind to implant joyfulness, love and forgiveness. Expansion is the only way out of depression. Unless you remain consciously aware of yourself, you will mechanically create your childhood circumstances over and over again in your workplace and in your home.”

(Guidance from Within, by Ernest F. Pecci,

10.     10. Grow Faith: “… become self-conscious of the assurance of the divine presence, such a faith will expand the mind, ennoble the soul, reinforce the personality, augment the happiness, deepen the spirit perception, and enhance the power to love and be loved.” (159:3.12)

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