Finding My Spiritual Ways

January 24, 2012

After reading more of  “Beyond Religion¹“, I felt compelled to write out some of the thoughts and feelings this book seemed to incite today.  First and foremost, this book has not given me much new information, but it has given me the confidence to believe and act as I always have tried to do.  It has touched me deeply to read what I have felt, searched for, and tried to live daily, written int words and explanations that seem to be elusive to me when I have tried to explain it to others before.

I find so many things in life to be “sacred”, at least in one sense, and find that the times, places, things and even people who touch my soul are numerous.  This, however, has brought about conflicts and confusion, as well as left me open to interpretations that I cannot seem to correct by simple explanations.  I find myself being defensive when I try to explain these moments in my life that are almost indescribably, as others have a difficult time understanding the intensity of some moments in my life.

I have always found some sort of solace in writing, whether it be poetry, lengthy letters, or even fictitious stories.  The unfortunate part of this is when that part of baring my soul is mocked and I am somehow seen as unable to communicate well, at least verbally, and the soul-full words that flow through my pen in waves are seen as too lengthy to read and seen as more of a chore than a gift of a part of myself for the recipients.  I suppose, then, that maybe I should possibly look at shortening my novel length letters and epic poems, at least, to see if I can get to a more concise way of communicating my thoughts.  Or should I view it as that those that mock and criticize my soul are really the ones losing out, and I do not have to change who I am and how I find my inner peace, share parts of myself, find my spirituality, or how I nurture my soul and find serenity?

¹”…Perhaps the greatest value of [the sand tray] is the ability to bypass the cognitive processes and go straight to my soul.  It’s symbols and images allow me to access my inner wisdom without getting entangled with the verbal and intellectual web of my brain.  the creative process involved in doing [a sand tray] allows me to connect with a deep place in my soul.  After doing [a sand tray], I usually feel as though something in me has shifted and I am ready to move on.”

While this was quite profound and spoke exactly what I feel when in my most freely artistic moments when things simply flow out of me in waves, it is not mean to discount the fact that I often times, do have a difficult time speaking what is in my soul aloud and it would be good for me to verbalize it.  While the author used sand tray therapy, I tend to use more “traditional” artistic expression as my own therapy.  I feel that when I speak openly, without the comfort of prose writing first, that the words become glue in my throat.  Some believe this to be some sort of fear of speaking, for some reason, though that could be the farthest thing from the truth.  I am not afraid to speak my feelings, as I speak them often, yet those seem to not be heard.  I speak my soul, things I am passionate about, though if the body language and responses of others show that there is no true interest in my soul, I refuse to wast my time or theirs by continuing to bare my soul to those who cannot accept or find interest in that part of me.

There are also times that what I feel is so intense that when I try to put it into words verbally, the part of my brain that tries to rationally put arguments together cannot fathom the irrational and chaotic phrases resting just below the surface.  My brain cannot seem to work through and apply logical and rational words to the overwhelming thoughts and emotions of the inspiring or poignant moments I would love to share with others, and there are very few people who have the patience to listen to incoherent thoughts to piece together the confessions falling past my lips.

I have also noticed that within this book I find my sexuality to be a very large avenue to my spirituality.  I have always found sex to me more than simply “having an orgasm” or “it just feels good” or “just getting off”.  While these are feelings sex invokes within me, I find sex quite sacred in some regards…and to the criticism of others.  I may not have a large sexual history with a long list of multiple partners, but what I have experienced has helped me value sex in a light that some cannot understand, while having an open enough attitude to see the value of other “non-traditional” views of what can be considered “sacred” when it comes to sex.

I can honestly say that I have experienced sexual encounters that I have only been able to describe as “intense” that have left me feeling as if my partner and I truly became one soul in that time.  I can honestly admit that I have found what some have called “nirvana” or “utopia”; an indescribable euphoric place and time.  It was almost an “out-of-body” experience that left me truly feeling as if I was flying and in another dimension or universe and I have been blessed with that experience more than once.

One partner, in particular, has given me more of those experiences than any other lover, which is probably why it was/has been so hard to end the relationship.  While the relationship itself was not healthy and abusive in many regards, the sexual aspect of the relationship transcended all of that and took my soul to another level where I learned to appreciate his soul in its most barren, vulnerable and honest state.

I have noticed that foreplay does tend to intensify the sexual experience, for me at least, though I don’t believe that these transcendent moments are specifically tied to foreplay, per se.  I do not have to have much foreplay, if at all, in one sense, but the mental foreplay of a sexual encounter is something I cannot personally deny as one of the most powerful forms there is to help move the experience into something more than simply “getting your rocks off”.

Maybe I do put a large emphasis on foreplay when others do not.  I also think that possibly, my definitions of foreplay are different than others, which can create hardships when trying to communicate your wants and needs in a sexual relationship.  What I define as foreplay encompasses a very large number of things, from physical touches and sensations, to ambiance and the mental aspects.

I find so many things erotic and sensual, yet I am amazed to an extent at least, at how often others see the same things differently than me.  I am not suggesting I am “right” and they are “wrong”, though I find myself feeling a sense of almost sadness for those that have not experienced so many sensations, especially with a partner you truly enjoy and want to be sexually intimate with to compliment emotional intimacy, or even with a partner you simply are sexually attracted to, which will tend to be seen as being a great lover, not simply just being a good lay or knowing how to have sex.

Maybe I should state it more accurately as I would love to see more people appreciate, enjoy, or allow themselves to be open to letting down their barriers and long standing stances to the possibility of feeling a new sensation…a new viewpoint of what is erotic, sensual, and pleasurable…a chance to be taken to new heights (or depths as the case may be) of a sexual experience and maybe even find their own sense of true freedom there.

Trying To Find Balance

January 24, 2012

In my effort to find some balance again in my life, I decided to try to take up keeping a journal again, though some of the things I decide to write about I will keep strictly “on paper” to respect the privacy of some in my life.  For now, I have decided to add another paper journal to my collection that started when I was very young, and as each of those journals have been open for anyone to read (once I reached a point of being old enough and allowed myself to feel secure enough in opening myself up for criticism), so why not continue to be the “open book” that I am for those that want to know?

My journal is my best friend, and I hold no secrets from my absolute best friend, and I have found that writing down what is in my soul is easier than speaking it aloud some times.  Some thoughts may be painful for some to read, and some I may look back on and cringe at my own words, but that is a risk anyone who keeps a journal must take.  This gives those that want to know my thoughts the opportunity to see the depths of my soul on their own terms…when and if they have the interest in doing so.

My life has been turbulent in many ways lately and I can’t quite pin-point an exact trigger, or solution.  This, of course, bothers me in some regards, but in others, it has helped be find that I still have the ability to accept things “as is” and adapt to what life hands me.  I have noticed, however, that in my effort to “be selfish” and do things that I thought I needed to do for “me” and to make sure I don’t get lost in fantasy, I lost some direction and seemed to have created a distance from those I considered closest to me…right at a time I could have used that intimacy.

I have felt a bit lost, confused, fuzzy and contradictory in my thoughts and feelings recently.  In an effort to gain some clarity, I bought a few books the other day.  The one I chose to begin reading first is Beyond Religion: A Personal Program for Building a Spiritual Life Outside the Walls of Traditional Religion.  I am about 49 pages in and have found myself becoming teary and emotional.

Great…me being emotional…when will that ever end?  At least I’ve tried to keep the emotions hidden from others, as I get so tired of trying to defend what things touch me so deeply that it brings me to tears…regardless of whether they are tears of sadness, anxiety, joy or even relief.

So far the book seems to, in a sense, re-affirm that my deeply emotional side is a sign of my spirituality and soul-fullness.  If it is re-affirming what I already feel about myself, why am I ashamed of it?  Why do I run away from it?  Why do I stop doing the things that bring me passion in life?

Is it because, yet again, I feel that I have no real support in those things?  Is it that my passions are so dull that the ones I truly love and care about only hear with their ears but make it painfully obvious that they don’t want to actually listen to me or that they simply are paying me lip service by not fully paying attention or trying to find out what kind of support I need in my life?

Of course, then again, I write that down and I second guess myself and realize that I am holding others to my own expectations of how I relate to other people.  That seems to be a problem for me, and I am unsure how to correct it…or if it needs to be corrected at all.  When I do ask to be treated a specific way or ask for support, I seem to be given lectures on how I should or should not be feeling or reacting.  At times it almost seems as if I am told how “immature” I am and how others have a better or healthier view of life and how to handle it than I do, even though I have seen counselors/therapists off and on for most of my life and have a host of self-help books and am constantly trying to find out different or better ways of handling my life.

So maybe this is just the time for me to be a bit introspective and look to myself only for support and peace.  I mean I don’t “need” anyone else for support or to bring me peace, but I had always held out hope that others may want to follow me on my journey to peace and balance and the adventure of my life…just as I have been their supporting others in their journeys.  Then again, maybe this all boils down to my fear and unease with criticism directed at me and/or my actions, emotions and plans for my life.

I’ve been told many times that I seem to take life too seriously.  Really?  Isn’t life serious at times and don’t others see how I revel in the not-so-serious aspects of life?  I have a sense of humor, even a morbid one at times, but just because I don’t constantly make fun of people or situations does not mean I take life too seriously.  Why does me being compassionate equate to seriousness?  Why do my deep emotions and trying to find solutions to problems equate to serious drama?

Then again, why should I care?  Oh right…because I am human with deep emotions, which is why I can find so much joy in the smallest things that others seem to overlook or take for granted.  Unfortunately, that is me being a bit hypocritical, now isn’t it?  Here I was just saying that others seem to lecture me on how I live, love, and feel, yet I just did the same thing…

No wonder I feel so confused and conflicted now in life.  I am hoping that with some meditation, reading and maybe even some aromatherapy, I will find the peace I am looking for…with or without those I love supporting me on my journey…or loved ones being there with me in the end.

This life is too short to wait on others for too long…though I will hold out hope while I continue to move forward…as I have been and will continue to do.


Ironically, I began reading again after writing this entry and a powerful statement caught my eye:

“Nothing is more important than being true to ourselves, to the daimon that lives at the core of our soul.  And what if this means we walk alone, that no one understands, that no one knows our name?  ‘And if the earthly no longer knows your name, whisper to the earth: I am flowing. To the flashing water say: I am’.”

This just gave me a sigh of…relief maybe…or is it contentment…or maybe what it did was remind me that who I really am…including the parts of me that others criticize and do not understand (or refuse to understand) is okay for me to accept…wholly and fully…

I know I may take this journey alone…and it is, and will be, okay to do this alone.