S is for Spirituality
Now, you may not realise, judging from yesterday's post of lavatorial lewdness, but I actually have quite strong spiritual beliefs. Many years ago, when I was at boarding school, we were forced to go to church every Sunday and it was unutterably boring and completely put me off organised religion. If we so much as smiled the vicar, who must have had a sense of humour lobotomy, would give you such a look of horror, you would have thought we had shouted "Phuq!" (see R) at the top of our voice. God forbid, if one of us farted, it was like we were sacrificing a small child. So I decided that anywhere that didn't have a sense of humour was no place for me!
But then, years later, I discovered that there was this whole other way of thinking, that didn't involve forcing you into stuffy old buildings and making you sit still and be silent for over an hour. What a revelation that was. I haven't looked back since. So, I thought today I would list some of the books that have had the most profound spiritual effect on me. They have changed my whole outlook on life for the better and it keeps changing as I practice living in a different way. It is not always easy as I keep defaulting to crabby, impatient, judgemental bitch from hell, but I do get occasional glimpses of the nicer, kinder, more compassionate person underneath. Gives me hope!
Ask and It Is Given by Abraham-Hicks
A totally life-changing book. I have read this and listened to it on CD and given it to many of my friends. The wisdom contained within its pages is awe-inspiring, yet so simply written and easily understood. If you haven't heard of this book or read it yet, I cannot recommend it highly enough. I have read most, if not all, of their books and they are amazing. I have also been to see Esther Hicks live and she (and, of course, Abraham) are completely fantastic. Jerry, as some of you may know, has recently passed on and is bringing his wonderful energy from non-physical.
The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success by Deepak Chopra
Again, an inspirational writer of incredible proportions. He has written too many books to name, but I particularly love this one. One of those books you want to have on your bedside table and keep referring to. A few years ago, I would meditate on each of the Laws on a different day of the week like he suggests, but I got out of the habit. Hmmm, perhaps I should dig it out of my bookshelf and re-start that practice.
Creative Visualization by Shakti Gawain
OMG! What a life-saver this book was for me. I read it for the first time 20 years ago when I got the most appalling eczema after giving up smoking cigarettes. I attribute this book to the fact that I not only got rid of my eczema (which was so bad I could hardly walk and had to bandage my feet every day in order to get to work) but it actually cured me of it reoccurring. Absolutely fabulous book. Shakti Gawain writes in a lovely, clear, down to earth manner which is easy to understand and effortless to put into practice.
Conversations with God by Neale Donald Walsch
The Way of the Peaceful Warrier by Dan Millman
A really lovely story, based on his life, by this truly incredible man. I have seen him speak as he lives locally and he is great. This book is his story of how he befriends and is guided by a powerful old warrior named Socrates. His gradual spiritual awakening is a joy to read about and I still think of some of the nuggets of wisdom in this book even though I read it years ago.
The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
This is quite a short book (and confirms the old adage about 'quality not quantity') but has had such a profound effect on my beliefs. He writes with authenticity and a deep wisdom and gentleness. A guidebook for life.
The Four Agreements are:
- Be Impeccable With Your Words
- Don't Take Anything Personally
- Don't Make Assumptions
- Always Do Your Best
A really powerful book but took me a while to read it. It is all about staying present. He is such a wise, intelligent man that I sometimes had to read the same page 5 times to understand it, but inspirational advice when I finally did. I try to be 'in the moment' every day, but then find myself thinking about what I did wrong yesterday or obsessively listing what I need to do tomorrow. Dammit, stay in the now, Claire!
What are your thoughts? Spiritual? Religious? Atheist? Whatever? Don't give a phuq?