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  • Writer's pictureJiaoshi Andrea

Misleading Mysticism: The Trap Of The Spiritual Journeys

When we start a spiritual path, be it Buddhist, Christian, etc, most of the time we get too much involved with the external aspect of it.

We don’t realize that the rituals, the story behind the religion, the clothing, a particular mantra, and so on, represent only the “tools”, not the end game.

If we get too attached to a system or a belief, we forget that we are something more than all of that. We might forget who we truly are.

We become rigid, with many opinions and ideas, categorizing things as absolutely right and wrong. We divide life. We judge those who are different. We think that we are somewhat better than a “normal” human being! When in reality, we are all the same. We just have different perspectives.

When we start our spiritual path, also because of marketing and how things are presented to us, mysticism becomes an appealing game that comes with a “bundle” of things we have to believe and do.

It is like buying a new dress and forgetting that it's just a superficial/external tool that we only use to accomplish a specific purpose: dressing up ourselves in this case.

It is normal that most of us go through this “external”, appealing phase. It’s very difficult to keep ourselves clean and deal with the uncertainty of life. Without embracing some ideas that might make us feel right or secure.

We end up creating some stories and listening to some guru or teachers that tell us what to do and what the world is about.

It’s difficult to take responsibility and have the necessary courage to see for ourselves our own inner conflicts and limitations. And do practically something about it.

It is easier to embrace a system of belief that takes our responsibility away. A distraction from our own inner compass which might involve seeing our bad aspects and behaviors as well.

Most of us look for a guru or an “enlightened” being who could do the work for us. Or we want to acquire a system of beliefs that could remove the uncertainty of life, such as religion.

It is normal that our journey starts in this way because very few people invite us to be responsible for our own making.

It could be helpful at the beginning of our spiritual journey because it can help us to have some form of support that could build confidence in our own abilities.

However, in the long run, this “dependency” process might be a trap, that keeps us stuck in some sort of “mind” entertainment. Unfortunately, it could never end.

A sign that we are really maturing is our independence and our courage to face ourselves and life for what it is, without support or beliefs.

This is a scary process for many of us. However, facing uncertainty with courage is the best thing that we can do.

Living life without looking for an explanation or a meaning, and being open to not knowing, is a great “soil” to mature and understand that we are the ones who can change or improve our lives: not somebody else, nor embracing some sort of religion.

We are unique and as such we have to flower in our own way.

It takes courage to be with things as they are and do the most mature work which is actually to realize that all the tools have a limited function and once we cross to the other “shore” of the river, we need to leave them.

Any tool that we use has the function to bring us ultimately to our ultimate way of knowing, which is free from beliefs and preconceived ideas.

When we understand this, we are truly free because we don’t need anybody to tell us what to do. We can make mistakes. We grow. We experience life with no fear and move on boldly by ourselves with courage.




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