"A revelation of insight into the foundations of human suffering & transcendence. It not only lays out essential steps for inner freedom and joy but illuminates the way to true human potential." Paul Rademacher, author: A Spiritual Hitchhiker's Guide to the Universe

"The masterwork of a profoundly gifted healer of the soul. Dazzling, challenging, wondrously useful." Peggy Rubin, author: To Be and How To Be, Transforming Your Life Through Sacred Theatre

"Rewiring the Soul is one the best introductions to the spiritual life I've ever read. Not esoteric but real-world and practical. The implications are profound." Peter Shepherd, author: Daring To Be Yourself

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Living a Spiritually Awakened Life in Every Moment

So you feel as though your life is moving in a more spiritual direction every day but you don't like spiritual gatherings? You find them perhaps a bit stifling? Overbearing? Too many spiritual egos involved? Or maybe you like them a great deal, but have little time to attend, or due to your own commitments to family are unable to attend at the times they are offered. Or perhaps you have difficulties getting into meditation, but are very keen on making your life a more awakened one. Perhaps you've read more books than you care to say and seen more inspirational presentations, seminars, workshops, and so on than anyone you know, and yet … something is lacking in what you consider the spiritual part of your life.

Perhaps you still get depressed at times, or have a burst of anger with someone close to you, or get unreasonably impatient, or envious or jealous at times, when you consider that you should already be far past these matters, because, after all, you have recognized your own spirituality and you do want to live an awakened life.

Here's what I believe (and of course it's just my opinion, taken from my own variegated life of many chapters and reinventions, as well as from experiences in many of the above situations):

Living a spiritually enlightened life is not so much about exactly what you believe, or with whom you share your beliefs, as it is about how you go about the small things in your daily life. It's not about how often you go to mass or meditate or visit the ashram, it's about how you are, think, react, and behave when you are not in one of those holy places. It's about how you live your life on a daily basis, which is why I love this Zen quotation so much:
Before enlightenment
Chop wood, carry water.
After enlightenment
Chop wood carry water.

So what you do (and the thoughts you have, and how you ultimately react) in any of the following sample situations, tells you where you can situate yourself on a scale of spiritual enlightenment:

·         a colleague at work has taken credit for an idea that was originally yours
·         your mother has asked you to help her - for the zillionth time - in a matter that you know she is capable of doing on her own
·         yet another telemarketer is on your line - it's the third one today!
·         a friend called to say they would not be able to come for lunch - a lunch that had been programmed for days, and it's now only 90 minutes before the scheduled time, and the reason you are given for the friend not coming is weak
·         your wife returns from the doctor with very bad news: she has been diagnosed as having Stage 3 lung cancer
·         your son just crashed the family car and although nothing happened to him, your insurance policy will not to cover the damages
·         the cashier at the supermarket is chatting to another store clerk, while she rings up your purchases
·         the maître d' at the restaurant at which you booked a table for your 25th wedding anniversary weeks ago tells you there has been a mix-up and your table will not be ready for at least another hour
·         you wake up feeling despondent
·         you notice yourself criticizing and judging those around you - even if only in your thoughts
·         you find yourself worrying - again - about your finances
·         you run into that person at a business lunch that always makes you feel uneasy, uncomfortable, perhaps even suspicious, but for no good reason
·         you find yourself becoming increasingly impatient over the course of the morning due to little things that seem to gang up on you
·         you become sad as something reminds you of a long ago painful event in your life

Clearly you recognize many of the above examples as familiar events in many people's lives. And just as clearly, most of them are certainly not enjoyable. Yet, it is in the way you handle these events, and more specifically, in the way you handle what goes on inside of you, that tells you how far you are living a spiritually enlightened life at all times throughout the course of your day, and every day of every year. It is in these daily events - small and large - that your enlightenment or spirituality have a chance to shine brightly.
Furthermore, your recognition in hindsight - should you not have handled the events well - that you could have handled them in a more conscious and enlightened manner, shows you that at least you are well on the road to living such a life.

So what can you do to move yourself into a more enlightened way of living? A way of living that shows you - moment by moment and day by day - that you are indeed doing your utmost to grow in love, compassion, and kindness, but also in connecting more and more to your inner light - without which you will not be able to shine light into the many dark rooms and corners we find on a daily basis. I believe - as I point out in all my books - that more than anything it has to do with your inner state of awareness; of consciousness of yourself and all that occurs around you and causes you to react at any given moment in order that you may remind yourself to live in such a way. And then repeating this as often as you can, all day long, and every single day of your life. Much also has to do with your intention to wish to live this enlightened life. If you truly intend it, you will truly practice it to the best of your ability every day.

Here are some favorite quotes about enlightenment that I have gathered over the years:

  • However many holy words you read, however many you speak, what good will they do if you do not act on them? Buddha
  • Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is enlightenment. Lao Tzu
  • You may have expected that enlightenment would come Zap! instantaneous and permanent. This is unlikely. After the first "ah-ha" experience, it can be thought of as the thinning of a layer of clouds. Ram Dass
  • To enjoy good health, to bring true happiness to one's family, to bring peace to all, one must first discipline and control one's own mind. If a man can control his mind he can find the way to Enlightenment, and all wisdom and virtue will naturally come to him. Buddha
Also visit my new website: www.gabriellakortsch.com where you may download excerpts or read quotations from any of my books.

Books by Dr. Gabriella Kortsch:
Rewiring the Soul

Click here to download the first chapter.
To see the Table of Contents click here

Reviews From the Back Cover:

"The masterwork of a profoundly gifted healer of the soul. Dazzling, challenging, wondrously useful." Peggy Rubin, Director, Center for Sacred Theatre, Ashland, Oregon; author: To Be and How To Be, Transforming Your Life Through Sacred Theatre

"Rewiring the Soul is one the best introductions to the spiritual life I've ever read. Not esoteric but real-world & practical. The implications are profound." Peter Shepherd; Founder Trans4mind.com; author: Daring To Be Yourself 

"The human being's directory to the soul. A breakthrough for those seeking practical assistance, those of a more mystical bent & every soul awaiting discovery." Toni Petrinovich, Ph.D.; author: The Call: Awakening the Angelic Human

The Tao of Spiritual Partnership

To download the first chapter, click here
To see the Table of Contents click here

Praise for The Tao of Spiritual Partnership

“All humans seek the illusive touch of another's Soul, which opens us to the sense of belonging to something bigger than the self. Dr. Kortsch has given us the true "tao" of relationship in this brilliant exploration of emotional tapestry. We will be grateful for this illumination of spiritual partnership for generations to come."
Chris Griscom: Spiritual Leader, Author (among others) of: Ecstasy is a New Frequency

“Eloquent and comprehensive, showing how your primary love relationship may be a sacred vessel that transports you and your partner to a place of mutual healing and expansion.” 

Robert Schwartz: Author of Your Soul’s Gift: The Healing Power of the Life You Planned Before You Were Born 

The Power of Your Heart: Loving the Self 

My new book: The Power of Your Heart: Loving the Self, is just out. Click here to download an excerpt. 
Here is a brief excerpt from the Introduction:

It is your right to live a life of love. It is your right to understand that loving yourself first is not a selfish way of behavior, but one that allows you to live that life of love. However, it's highly probable that you never got the instruction manual explaining exactly how to accomplish this. Possibly your family - and it may have been a loving family - considered loving the self an act of selfishness. Or perhaps the members of your family simply didn't practice loving the self, and of course, what you didn't see - what was not shown to you - while you were growing up, meant that you just didn't learn how to apply it to yourself. The closer you are able to move towards loving yourself, the closer you will be to living a life of love - quite independently of whether you are in a love relationship or not. A life of love can be lived with or without a partnership, because a life of love implies that you know that it all begins with you by loving the self. The more clearly you understand how to love yourself, the more clearly you will see that it is very hard - if not impossible - to love others in ways that are unrelated to fulfilling any of your needs. Loving yourself first is - for so many of us - one of the hardest things we will ever learn how to do. But know this: the benefits affect you in every particle of your being - body, mind, and soul - and are greater than you will ever be able to imagine.

Note: If you are wondering why this blog is now only appearing on alternate days (excluding Sat/Sun), it is because I also post on my other blog on the others days. That other blog is The Tao of Spiritual Partnership, so named for another one of my books. Click here to visit the blog and/or to sign up for the feed.

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