Have you had any particularly spiritual experiences this past year? How has this experience affected you? "Spiritual" can be broadly defined to include secular spiritual experiences: artistic, cultural, and so forth.
Every day of my life is spiritual. My sense of connection with the spiritual grows every year.
The yoga retreat in Yelapa! Reminds me how to center myself, connect with peace and joy.
BONNAROO! One of the best experiences of my life. Surrounded by music, and people who love music as much as I do was as close to spiritual as I'm going to get.
I have experienced that I need to be better connected to my Higher Power. I feel very disconnected and alone. It doesn't let me see other options.
This past year I worked basically all year with few breaks. When I'm working, I often am not in a mental space to connect with much spiritually. Interesting huh? Anyway, the few times I felt spiritually connected, were when I was hiking outside or listening to music. That's kind of sad really. There have been times when I've sat in a church seeking something internal, but nothing comes up for me. Spirituality is something elusive and ephemeral. I seem only to seek God or my internal self when I'm in trouble or feeling desperate.
Unlike past years, I can't say that I've had a spiritual experience in the usual sense. In fact this has been the year that I realized that my sense of God had atrophied to the point that I had de facto become an atheist. I still have deep ties to my religion, and observe a number of those traditions because they tie me to my people as a shared experience.
My son's Bar Mitzvah - how he rose to the occasion with grace and confidence, and how the room was filled with ruach and love. It was amazing and beautiful.
I've had time to appreciate beauty, especially in Nature. I loved being able to do that.
Well, 2015 is the year i realized that yes, i want to marry a man and spend the rest of my life with him. I don't know if that is spiritual, but it's definitely enlightening.
Seeing the very different beauty of Montana and Wyoming, compared to what I'm used to in New England and Switzerland. The stark openness leaves room for so much to be revealed.
Getting an email saying that classes for my conversion to Judaism would start after the holidays, I cried tears of joy that night.
I've had several spiritual moments while surfing in California. The swings from scared shitless to cloud 9 feels spiritual at times. Since I was always alone for the 2014-2015 season, I would sometimes talk to God or just sit and try to feel at peace in the ocean.
Drat - something else I missed this year. I have been reading more but only for pleasure - not for spiritual growth.
Nope, not really..
I took par tin a dancing project. The last day I was so afraid that there will be a lot of people looking at us... I did it at least xaxax
No. I have been moving away from my faith and my religion and I don't know what to do about it. I don't know that I believe in God, but I want my son to have faith in Him. I want to be a good Mormon mom, but I have so many doubts and so many failures - I don't know that I can ever fully repent and go back.
While wandering in NYC ( which we do on weekends) we happened into a Egon Schielle (sp?) exhibit that was truly breathtaking -- both in the the art itself and in the gallery in which it was displayed (the Neue Gallery). It is an amazing environment in which to contemplate the depths of emotional torment in German expressionist art and it was an astonishing exhibit of one of the best of the era. Although well before my time - the experiences are essential to my parents and their parents from austria and the ukraine and hence are in my blood.
Probably the most spiritual experience I had this year was getting to go on a ten day road trip with David, almost entirely without electronics available. I recognized during this time just how damaging the constant availability was to my being -- not just my mental state, but my physical being too. I found out that my needs to be outside, to go slow, to have fewer scheduled events driving my time, were in great conflict with the life i have been living. My life has been making me sick again, which hasn't happened since I was in pre-divorce. I am working on recognizing what is important and prioritizing that... and myself. Taking less time for computer-based activities and more time for outdoors movement have helped a lot.
Because I was teaching at Hebrew School, I engaged more with Judaism this year than any time since my Bar Mitzvah, or maybe since going to Israel. And that became an important part of my year, of my life, and of how I saw myself. It felt like a religious obligation to try to be a righteous person. Just two weeks ago, I had one of the most profound religious experiences of my life, welcoming Shabbat while watching the sun set behind the mountains of Marin. I prayed, I really prayed. I felt God was with me, and I spoke to God. I thanked God for my blessings, and asked that God give us, me, the compassion and wisdom to treat each other with love. I had to laugh at myself, but I embraced the feeling.
Yes, a remote healing session with John of God of Brazil
It is the lack of events in my life that is the most striking. Whether people have families that they like/ love or don't , they are still involved with with their events. Just being the two of us, has had huge impact. I do live vicariously sometime, through others' experiences...probably being needy! I do have a facade of happiness sometimes and I just make the best of things, having basically a positive outlook on things. It feels awkward some of the time, listening to others' tales of their childrens', and now grandchildren's adventures. Hopefully no one can see the sadness in my heart!
Whenever I hear Patrick Watson play live I feel that there is ahigher power. And when I saw the many shooting stars this past summer and slept on the boat and rolled into the water to join the wildlife I have felt that beauty this intricate, the feeds all five senses and the soul, can only be created by a higher power.
This is a hard question as I don't really consider myself a spiritual person. Going to Costa Rica, a new country, trying new things... That was part of my spiritual journey this year.
I am taking the path to a 12 step Buddha . I have been profoundly affected by our trip to Thailand in February 2015 in a much better place because of this through a simple technique of the mindfulness of breathing. I was overwhelmed by the warmth of these people that have little but seem to feel so blessed.
Every day I chant, I have a spiritual experience. It's both wonderful and terrifying.
I am a spiritual person so I have many throughout the year. I was think about my dad and looked out the windpw and saw a deer looking back at me. Another time I was thinking of him, a butterly came by to visit me. Just thought he was coming to visit and let me know he was OK. Another time, I was think about some friends who I hadn't seen or talked to in a while. She called at that time. It reminds me how frail and insignificant we are in the big picture but spiritually we are strong.
I've dabbled in meditation -- that's spiritual, right? I did it in order to be able to better understand my mind and to learn how to carve a place for quiet in it. Before my mind was constantly going and ultimately landed itself in an unhealthy place. Through meditation I've been able to observe those troublesome thought patterns and be able to divert them before they spin out of control. It's brought an aspect of peace to my life but also a sense of agency; I do not have to follow my thoughts into the depression rabbit hole.
I have experienced two spiritual moments and one spiritual journey over the last year. The Grateful Dead Fare Thee Well concert renewed my faith in people as kind hearted and loving in nature despite what we constantly see around us. Also going to Rosh Hashanah teffilot in the only community in the world that i feel perfectly comfortable. On top of that it was with Abi and Sarah. It made the experience so meaningful. Shvil Yisrael was a spiritual journey for me that pushed my physical limits in such a different way than the army did. I thoroughly enjoyed every moment and was constantly inspired.
When I converted to Judaism using the mikvah, I had a moment in the water where I saw my current self walking up an 8-year old version of myself, taking their hand, and saying: "We got this. Come on, let's go."
I'm having trouble thinking of any. And that's kind of sad. I kind of think I need to be alone in nature to have a spiritual experience, and I'm never alone. I suppose the closest I've come is floating in the lake in Maine.
A month ago, I was trying not to dread the approaching High Holy Days. I felt as though I had wasted the year I'd been given, coming no closer to the life I'd hoped to have and the person I'd promised to become. How could I dare ask for another chance, another year? I felt profoundly stuck. It took Jason's act of cowardice to spark the bravery I needed to return to improving myself and repairing the world around me, piece by piece. It is not upon me to finish the work, but neither am I free to desist from it. What I am free to do, now, is grow in my own way with lightness and confidence. By losing one person I loved, I've been reminded of the many others in my life who care about me tremendously.
At my dad's 6-month anniversary, my friend Michelle and I went down to the ocean, read a verse from the Bible and released lilies into the water in his memory and in my aunt's memory. It helped me heal in a way that I probably wouldn't have been able to. We saw 6 pelicans that day and we knew it was a sign from God and my loved ones. And we found out that pelicans represent sacrifice and a father's love, so it was a life changing experience.
This year, I visited Israel. I feel a fire alight within myself to connect to my faith, to connect to my community, and most importantly, to join the life cycle so I can share the beauty of this world with a family that I love. At the Kotel, I pressed my palms and lips to something older than time, something that both holds us, and frees is, and I felt small and important at once, and I'm trying not to lose that.
I guess actually the only spiritual related event that was happened to me would be the realization that i am not a vaguely religious person at all. I have no faith in a higher power, my friends and some family surrounding me aren't extremely religious but they all have faith. I don't know if it is because I wasn't raised religiously, or just because maybe I would have just ended up this way.
The word "spiritual" doesn't really mean anything to me. Which makes me wonder what the people have in common to whom it does. I've seen some great art this past year, I've had some very joyous moments, I've had some major life events and epiphanies...but I don't know what that word means. Edit: Okay, after talking to some friends I've decided to conclude that seeing the Wachowskis' Netflix series "Sense8" was a really transformative spiritual experience in that it really challenged me to think about interdependence as a superpower.
Recently, I had the opportunity to attend an Economics of Compassion Forum at Temple Sholom in Cincinnati where a Rabbi and an Episcopal Priest discussed their takes on the Biblical concept of the Jubilee. The priest's presentation and thesis that the stories in the NT, and Jesus's whole movement were a radical political response to Roman oppression, and on every page teach us to live the Jubilee (debt forgiveness and redistribution of wealth) as our Christian faith. When he read the Lord's Prayer in the context of the Jubilee it was mind blowingly eye opening....in a way that I have never heard the Bible interpreted before.
The clearest spiritual moment I had was riding my bike in Spain this summer. We were climbing a mountain for close to an hour in incredible fog that hung over the air. Then as I made a turn, suddenly the sky opened up and was a perfect cloudless blue. I gasped out loud at the awesomeness of it. I really felt like God was with me at that moment.
I started to have déjà vu that was on going. It lead me to great things like gnosis learning, Nikola Tesla & God. What a beautiful experience. I am who I am because my sight has been change.
In small doses. Working with Buddhist teacher Georgie Ayala a couple times a year is always spiritually opening for me. A weekend at Kripalu, drumming and dancing. Finding an open drum circle in downtown Asheville, NC this summer and getting to randomly dance in the company of like-minded strangers. Floatation sessions, where I am simply alone with my thoughts. And most importantly, every time I step into the woods. I hiked a lot this year, partly because it's exercise I can do with minimal pain and partly because being alone among the trees and the wind and the birds truly allows me to open my mind and hear God.
I recently joined the choir at my church and it really changed me. The experience made me happy and glad to be part of something church wise. It made me a better person as far as being more kind to people.
No. I did have a greater sense of calm in the way I react to different things that I used to consider stressful. I am better able to notice these stressors and change how I react or do not react to them. I is a nice feeling.
Being in Israel davening with friends on the beach with my kids and their kids.
I participated along with my sister and niece in my daughter's mikvah experience after she and her husband miscarried. I had never seen any mikvah service and for this to be my first one was very powerful and certainly spiritual. The "mikvah chick" prepared a series of prayers and readings that addressed the loss of the baby as well as the hope for future healthy children. To see my lovely daughter in the warm waters of this beautiful mikvah, to hear her soulful prayers, to know the sorrow and pain she was feeling and yet to not be able to immediately embrace her- to only be there at the edge of the pool- was symbolic and spiritual to me. In life- as parents- when our kids move from child to adult- it is our job to emotionally support but not direct or take over their own job of figuring out what life throws at them.
My dreams keep me connected to those whom I have lost. I feel as though they are right here with me, I just have to bring them up -- and that usually happens in my dreams when I sleep.
I have been noticing answers to my prayers which have been accompanied by body-felt sensations (warmth, tingling, spaciousness) and sharpness and brightness of sight (a sense of increased luminosity). I noticed a correlation between the kindness and generosity of intention in my prayers, and the speed and quality of the answers. I feel empowered by the experience of having answers to my praying and well-wishing, and I am driven to act kindly and generously more often and consistently.
I finally checked out EMDR after listening to a friend rave about it for over a year and was more a spiritual experience getting to know me, on a much deeper level. Didn't really expect how transformative it was. Also saw my grown son really handle a difficult moment in his life with grace and felt good to see that he's going to be okay. His faith in something bigger than himself has really grown.
I learned more from and about the Bible, though I wish I had been more diligent as a daily reader. It's enlightened me and matured me as a person of faith.
yes, in meditation.
Giving birth was an incredibly spiritual experience for me. I remember crying inconsolably because I was filled with joy and this incredible sense of humility that G-d would entrust me with such a precious gift.
Yoga has been my spiritual journey this year. I've learned about patience, kindness, empathy, and being present and on my own journey. I've made connections and come to the understanding that my community is one of the most important things in my life. I've learned to be easy on myself and to have self-compassion. Spiritually, I know that I can put trust in the universe to take care of things, and that constant reminders about that are okay.
I had two strong directions from my spirit: it is time to leave my job because I am no longer serving the organization with enthusiasm, and it is time to go through the docent training program at the LA Zoo so that I can become a well informed advocate for wildlife.
This past year my grandfather has recently passed, and this summer I was in Sicily his hometown in which he grew up in. One day we had a mass for him, and the priest was talking about him and saying all these nice things about him and it was just making me a little emotional. So the next day I was getting ready to leave to go out for the night and I saw a two roses out on my street. And I thought it was weird for a second but then I picked them up and one was dead and the other wasn't. And when my grandfather passed I a bought a bouquet of roses and took one and left one on my dashboard of my car. And I just felt that that was a little sign from him telling me he was okay and just checking in with me.
There have been a few times when I've been wild swimming that I'm awed by the beauty of nature, the soft feel of the water. I was also humbled when cycling up Mont Vonteux during my recent holiday in France. The sight of the famous climb to the summit made my eyes water during our recce drive up to the top and I felt broken by the time I reached the top. It was very emotional.
I kinda found myself more as an artist, mostly musical. I played a lot of guitar and found what my style really is, what kind of blues i love.
I lost my grandmother. And my mother was diagnosed with cancer. Maybe this does not count as "spiritual", but life and death are present at all times. The problem is what do we with ourselves in-between those 2 things. When death is more present, we are supposed to be more appreciative of life. But sometimes that's not easy or automatic. I guess i now see that health is fleeting and to not concentrate so much on what is not right and more on what is.
While I am skeptical about the reality of so-called demonic forces, I actually participated in the exorcism of our college campus. It all started with my realization that, since nothing productive was happening despite all our humanly possible attempts to resolve our conflict with certain school administrators, perhaps there was a need to resort to spiritual warfare. After all, there was no harm and it might help; what did we have to lose? Surprisingly, while I had no real intention of observing the liturgical season of Lent, I ended up practicing voluntary fasting. I even went back to praying the Liturgy of the Hours, and regularly celebrating the Sunday Eucharist. My students -- and even I -- noticed a change in myself. My spiritual presence tended to be lighter and more positive, quite unlike the previously dark and brooding atmosphere it brought.
My yoga practice has expanded to encompass Mussar, and I'm trying to practice daily. The next step will be to carry that practice deeper into my day - it can't be just in the early mornings. I'm still in the stage where I'm more aware of my shortcomings than of my achievements.
No, I miss them.
Have felt closer to God this year, though I'm still working through some issues. I also did a course with my Church about finding frredom within Christianty, from guilt and stuff that has held me back, that helped a lot,
When it comes to the spiritual I feel as though others around me are caterpillars changing to butterflies, while I am dealing with the realization that I am an earthworm and will never grow wings. What is the spirit? Is it apart from the mind? Is a spiritual feeling the feeling of joy I get sometimes when I listen to music or see clouds? Is it the feeling I get occasionally that I am in tune with the universe or that things are happening for me just at the time I need them? I wish I knew.
I like to consider myself a religious person. I didn't like to swear or hear people constantly swearing around me until last year. I admit it, I slipped. I messed up a lot of things and started swearing my head off to anyone who would listen, including my mother. But this year, some clarity came into my life, which I honestly think was sent by Allah, or God, or Yaweh, or whomever you want. I've gone cold turkey with swearing and it's greatly improved my attitude as well as my friendships.
Visiting my parents grave with a friend who gave a speech to my parents about me
Getting doored on August 21, 2015 was not a spiritual experience, but the aftermath was. I remember lying on the ground bleeding profusely, and I was in so much shock and pain. I couldn't open my eyes at first, but I could hear and sense people circling around me. These concerned citizens came to my rescue. One woman in a white lace dress was a nurse, and she talked to me and helped me make phone calls on my phone. I didn't really start to cry until she made three phone calls on my phone (Kari, Stephen, and Aja), and all three went to voicemail. If there has ever been a moment to solidify that I am alone in this world, it would have been that. I'm such an independent person, but at that moment, I needed my people, and they were not there. John Nydam came to get me, and he was so great at helping me navigate the situation. The spiritual nature of this event was that so many people came to help me. They stopped what they were doing to help. One guy offered to store my bike for me while I dealt with the ambulance, and a food delivery person waited until the police arrived to give her statement. After I was bandaged, I was leaning up against a building, waiting for John to return, and a little white boy holding hands with an old abuela approached me. The little boy who was about 7 asked me why I was crying. I told him that I was doored. The abuela looked so upset for me and offered me some water, which I accepted. The little boy returned and gave me the water. She wished me well, and they left. I waited again while Morgan dropped off my bike to Comrade, and a man with his two teenage daughters approached. He was concerned that I was waiting for a ride home, and he offered to take me. We talked about the accident, and how he ran outside when he heard it happen. As he walked up to me, I remember he wasn't wearing any shoes. These community members didn't have to help me, a complete stranger, and yet they did. They were there when I needed them the most. Most importantly, they brought their children out. They witnessed the compassion strangers can have for each other. Spiritually, I felt more connected to humanity than I have in a long time. Humans caring for other humans. This is what life is about. This is the spiritual nature that I believe in.
I think my entire year has been a spiritual experience. Spiritual, in the sense that it's been a journey of discovery and understanding. No woowoo moments, more like quiet times, and quests for deeper knowledge about myself. And to accept and forgive myself. I've hurt two women that I love, by rejecting them and leaving primary relationships with them, and I need to reconcile those choices with the person I am and want to be. I've felt alone, and needed to find peace with that solitude. I've struggled with my self-worth, and wanted to accept and love myself, warts and all. It hasn't been easy.
No. There were some "good" artistic and cultural experiences, yet "spiritual" seems to be a thing outside of my scope. I'm suspicious of anything that sounds "woo", whether it be art, a drug trip, religious dogma, or even what I call "F-type personality" vocabulary choices. But I'm just thinking, what do I mean by "good" if it wasn't spiritual? Maybe "spiritual" means some kind of awakening. And what does good art do but awaken something, possibly the thing the artist intended? Sometimes art is just pretty to look at, or technically complex, or it has a social message. So I can appreciate the time and energy the artist put into it. I don't think I've encountered spiritual art, or at least, it didn't have that effect on me. Maybe I'm broken in that way, because I'm very guarded against the "woo" taking over. Was the bug burn at Firefly supposed to do this? Because I was just cold and tired and thought it was funny that the wood was so wet it didn't burn right away. I still kind of enjoyed it in a weird way, but maybe it was at the level of just satisfying my curiosity. (That wasn't within the past year anyway.) Maybe spiritual experiences are a more subtle, less life-changing thing than I have been defining them, and I have had them without knowing it?
After teaching my first seminar, I realized that all of my participants and myself included, were deeply in the right hemisphere of our brains. It was so amazing and wonderful. I was thrilled to achieve that state of mind with all of them. We were all in deep happiness. Each of the women were not concerned that they couldn't really function in their logic or the direction. It was a blast to see them completely happy. Finally, all of my friends experienced the joy I've been telling them about for years. And the best part, it is all right there in their brains and they can connect with it at any time they wish!!!
My daughter, who is 11, decided she would like to get Bat Mitzvahed. At first I was a little annoyed. It's a big commitment for her and for me. It means money and time that I feel like I don't have. But once I went to services with her, I realized how much I will enjoy this journey with her. It was lovely to take time out for Judaism and I think it will make our lives richer.
I have had a pretty big spiritual experience this past year. My Dad was diagnosed with brain cancer in March (17th) the day after we lost of Golden to a brain tumor. He underwent surgery to determine the type and course of treatment. Working in the medical field and working with patients who have had cancer in their brain, I was expecting the worst. How do I tell my daughters (3 and 5) that their Pop Pop may not be around in a few months. The neuro surgeon felt it was probably a gliobastoma(the worst brain cancer-no treatment works, it's not curable). Prayers were coming in from all over(friends, family, etc), I prayed to St. Peregrine(saint of cancer) daily and prayed for the best. I had a dream the night before his surgery that the tumor had shrank. The morning of his surgery, we met with the surgeon before he went back to the operating room. They did another MRI that morning to really pin point the spot where the tumor was. The surgeon told us the tumor had shrank from the steroids he was taking, glioblastomas don't shrink! My dream was coming into reality, I couldn't believe it. After the surgery, My Dad was talking, eating, etc....no breathing tubes which the doctor had prepared us for. The pathology came back and while it was still cancer, it wasn't the GBM!!!! PRAYERS ANSWERED!! He finished his chemo and just started radiation. They are considering him in full recovery and hopefully he'll be in remission once the radiation is over. This whole experience has shown miracles to me (I know they happen but never saw one happen to someone I know) and my faith has been expanding tremendously. I hope that my faith continues to deepen and expand and that I can continue to deepen my children's faith as well.
When I think of the definition of spiritual, I automatically refer to religion. In my case, my relationship with God. Over the years I've had encounters with God, but they were only temporary experiences due to I would result back to my old sinful habits. This year it has been no different, I'm still growing spiritually every day with God. This year I've been going through a lot, but I feel authorized to always keep a deep connection with God no matter what. We all have flaws and he knows them and would prefer we give our burdens over to him so he can mold us in the way that's pleasing to him.That's all that's important in life. He shows the love that many have lost their life for and he does so carelessly. His love is unconditional, you can't deny it. If we were to live the per say "American Dream", what difference would it make if you were not happy? You have the highest degree imaginable, the dog, the three kids, the house on the hill, but is that all to life? Sure you have a smile plastered on your face when you see your kids and their mother interacting but what about your internal state? Are you okay? Do you ever wonder if there is more? Well, I can can personally say God answered the majority of concerns he gave me not a purpose but a bright destiny.With God, it's so much easier to smile despite ear-splitting words you hear from a loved one, the incarceration of parents, low self-esteem,and overwhelming schedules as mine. With God, life is actually bearable. God changed my life unlike any other source and transform yours as well for the better.
I had a great lesson with a new horn teacher (I am a horn player). So that was cool.
A general sense of connectedness. Experience walking in woods. Experienced at Rocky Mtn. National Park.
Yoga. I love yoga. I feel like a wrung out washcloth afterward. I am much calmer and much happier. And much healthier!
Yes,while I pray I by myself I feel as if God or whoever is above us is with me
Watching my young sons play in the ocean for the first time, I had a deep feeling of being blessed. I am so fortunate.
My visit to L.A. showed me that I can go experience life differently. I can get into the comedy world, even if only a bit. It's okay to start late, and that really changed my outlook. I hate my day job. It's stupid and badly run and unrewarding. I was panicking constantly like "oh god, I"m doing nothing with my life!" And then I thought "it's okay. You will get there." So now it's staying on track to plan out my finances, to stay on target and use the Force... of money management.
We spent Christmas in Taos, NM and were able to participate in the Taos Pueblo Christmas Eve bonfires and the Buffalo Dance on Christmas Day. The connection to nature and the earth by the Taos Pueblo indians was moving and remarkable. Reminded me again there is no one truth.
I can't think of anything spiritual. Although I visited some amazing spiritual sites such as Angkor Wat. I did feel moved by both Auschwitz and the Killing Fields in Siem Reap, as well as the prison in Phnomh Penh. For me, it is connecting with history that feels most spiritual. I also had an artistic connection with a show at the National Gallery where they had paired music with art in an exhbition called Soundscapes. I went twice and really loved it.
Not really. I've been quite short on genuine optimism or inspiration since my mother passed away. Hoping that'll change when my new son/daughter is born later in the year!
My friends and I went to the Badlands National Park, and it was glorious. God made nature, and nature is beautiful. And it may have been beautiful before it is the topography that we know today, but it took years to look this good. I was there on my own - my friends each had their spouses with them. And while solitary and missing my own dearly departed spouse, I found myself feeling free and courageous. I felt I had truly communed with nature. It made me realize that I can be a more active person, and that being active - climbing over boulders, hiking up hills - actually feels good in my body, in the right setting. As good as curling up with a very good book, in fact.
As cliche as it sounds, going to the Western Wall was a very moving experience for me. For some reason, it seemed amazing that something from the Torah was actually solid and in front of me. I remember thinking "This is all we have left". I definitely feel connected to the history of the Jewish people in a more spiritual way after visiting.
Define spiritual? Maybe I became a little more enlightened this year, realizing, though not for the first time in my life that friends and family and community are where you invest. Work is work, a means to an end, and if you're not careful, a path to your own demise.
I really enjoyed – and learned a lot – about the Native American culture of the southern states, pre-to early white settlement times – on our vacation trip to the South. It made me wish for a real time-machine – so many mysteries! I think what most impressed me wasn't their accomplishments, art or architecture (which were all quite impressive) but that we know - really - so LITTLE about our own human history - even relatively recent history - and we are making so many decisions about how to proceed to the future, based on totally inadequate information - not just inadequate, but missing, or totally misunderstood. We should be very cautious using 'we know' as a phrase about ANYTHING involving people. We don't know.
Sadly, I seem to answer this question the same every year. I haven't had any true spiritual experiences in recent memory, although when I am communing with nature I feel fairly spiritual. Perhaps I'm just not attuned to spirituality? I am open to the idea, just haven't experienced it yet.
no, and I wish I had. I am working toward a broader awareness.
Coming up with a plan for growth and G-d shifting the world and circumstances to show me that I'm on the right track.
i have been trying to set extra meditation time every thirteen days to explore shamanic journing, then sketching my dream/visualization/ realization into illustrations of mask or transmutation. I don't always succet, but the experience is wonderful
I don't think so. If anything the idea of spirituality was taken away this year. I went to shul the least amount of time that I have since college, and then I didn't go to shul because there wasn't one to go to. In short it was a year that I was angry at Judaism.
taking my dad to church for the last time and watching him insist on walking up to take communion, while him and I knew it would be his last time. Your heart sink while it swells at the pride a dying man still has.
It was kind of cathartic watching the junk truck haul all my stuff away.
I have had a very slow spiritual currency increase this year, but I can definitely feel it. Other people noticed before I did; someone at a meeting told me that she could tell that I was content, that I had a lightness of being. Friends who saw me at my lowest have noticed that I sound different, look different. Having a stronger connection with my higher power is the culmination of a daily ritual of little decisions.
No-- to live at all, to live with family intact, to live in modest comfort (grandiose some would think), to be part of a spiritual community for nearly 50 years and to feel a sense of growth and increasing understanding.... these things are my spiritual experiences and can scarcely be separated one from the other. Indeed I am a fortunate person
I consider myself spiritual in a broad sense. I use to meditate, pray, listen to classical music. In this past year I don't recall something "particularly" spiritual. Yet, I can put in this chapter, the wonder, of listening the Rachmaninov concerto no 2 through the Internet, in the new theatre "The Blue Whale" that is 300 km from my house.
We were lucky enough to travel extensively and meet Hindus, Buddhists, Muslims, Jews and Christians in various countries who led tours while sharing the passion for their faiths. The passion and expressions of their faiths were quite moving to witness.
Since I'm no longer working at a Jewish organization, I have been able to define my Judaism on my own. For me, it has never been about following the rules, covering my body or eating and avoiding certain foods. It's about how I treat people, believing in God and, more than anything, the culture. I'm proud to be a Jewish woman. I make amazing matzo ball soup and brisket. But I also love bacon. When things get hard, I focus on God. When I'm on a turbulent flight and get a little scared, I whisper the shema to myself and feel comforted. My Judaism is mine, it's not anyone else's, and I'm focused on practicing it in a way that makes me happy and comfortable, not the way that someone else tells me I "should".
I would have to say that, during an unpaid leave from work, I spent a great deal of time swimming. Being in the water IS spiritual for me--I feel very connected to nature and our earth....I feel its force and serenity. It affects me to my core. I know this will sound odd, but I often feel I was meant to be in the water more than on earth. Rather odd since I'm an Earth sign LOL When I take photos, some of my favourite ones are of the ever-changing capacity of my Lake!
I know a lot of my answers here have been about Bob & Helen, but their deaths were major events my life this year. Their funeral services could not have been more different, but then again the two families are very different. Both services were spiritual invoking religion and family and their culture, and I contributed to both services. Both gave me a lot of opportunity to reflect on spirituality, God, and the life lessons taught by the two of them. What I realized the most from Bob is the value of living in the moment, but not getting tripped up by the little things. Helen's life reminded me of the importance of family. They both valued their religions too. Good lessons...
There has been so much controversy/discussion over religion. I believe in spirituality and having that sense of peace and comfort. I haven't had any "aha" moments that I can think of but I have spent time trying to meditate and think and center.
I interviewed a person for a podcast and hearing his story was inspiring and transporting, getting me out of my own self involvement and hearing about his life, so different than mine. This experience is similar to reading a great novel but is so much more personal and special to me. I may need to do this more often.
Just living day by day --when I thought cancer had caught me -- seems to be a spiritual experience.
I have spiritual experiences nearly every day of my life. I am not a religious person, per se, but I am very spiritual. One time this pas year that stands out is my trip to Central Europe. Also, working in my gardens is always such an experience.
Same ole same ole. Nope. Just being is spiritual.
This might sound really stupid, but I ate a really good apple this morning. Other than that, something really hit me when I saw Mt. St. Helens. And when I watched sunset on the beach in Oregon.
I am so thankful that in this current place of my life, I have a spiritual experience almost every day, but as far as extraordinary ones - I had the tremendous blessing and opportunity to guest cantor at a synagogue service over the summer. It was AMAZING. The things that resonated with me the most were: 1., that no one applauded but I still felt profoundly supported and appreciated in my singing, and -2., everyone sang along. It was really really incredible. I want to do it again, which I am just realizing now is a very strong want, as I write this. I also had a very interesting spiritual experience on my birthday, a huge up followed by a huge down and tears and brandy, followed by a weirdly lasting sense of peace and joy. I'm not sure if I can elaborate the mechanics of it - I leaned into emotional pain as hard as I could until I started laughing. I have had some kisses this year that felt like blessings.
I don't really do "spirituality," so I'll just reflect on moments of peace. I feel the most clear, and peaceful, and in tune with the world around me when I'm walking. It doesn't really matter where, as long as I'm walking just to walk. Not walking the dog, or walking to somewhere. Just walking for the sake of taking a walk and thinking or talking or breathing or just existing. I've had several very nice walks this year: in Wisconsin, in my own Neighborhood, and around the block at work. It leaves me feeling less anxious, less judgmental, and more in tune with my body and mind. Come to think of it, I should do it more.
I think the most spiritual experience this past year was at Friday night services after Finn Dana's death. It wasn't that the service itself was incredibly spiritual, as much as the fact that my adviser, Anna Roberto, and my friends came to services to give me hugs and support me. I was upset, and the spirituality of the service was in the community and the connection I felt to those who cared about me.
I think my experience that I wrote about in ... day 1? ... about experience the loosening weave of existence, that experience that precedes an onset of depression, was pretty striking. I think it was the first time I recognized that feeling for what it was, why I felt it, and how it would never fully go away. That was stunning to me. I've long tried to become more "spiritual" in a traditional way, and attended the Quaker Meeting in my city, as well as an Episcopal church. During my visit to the Episcopal church I loved but felt stymied, too, by the pomp of it all. I feel blocked by the idea of taking communion. But I was deeply moved by a frail, middle-aged man who appeared to want to take communion, but hung back. He was encouraged by other parishoners, but he hung over the side of the pew with his arm over his head, like he was protecting himself from being struck. Finally, he had the ... courage, I guess, to get up, and the two parishoners walked him to the front for the bread and the wine. The support of the other church-goers was warming, not only in its unconditional nature, but that they didn't make a production of it. They were so gentle and helpful, and kind.
I don't consider myself to be a very spiritual person. The closest I get is the feeling of peace and well-being I have when I hike on trails through trees. I have especially liked Mark's and my Saturday hikes at Mt. Doug. It gives us a chance to stay connected as well as enjoy nature.
No spiritual experiences last year, questioning faith and church more though. I have made up my mind on a career path if that counts
The most spiritual experience I experienced this year was my wedding. My wife and I prepared for some time for the big day, meeting our Rabbi and reading about the wedding. Being under the Chuppah, I really felt moved by what was going on inside and around me. Also, we travelled to South Africa for our honeymoon, and while there we went for a Safari. Being in the wild, and seeing they animals interact in the wild, and learning from our guides about their behavior, we could feel G'd's intervention in Nature.
Shabbat! Regularly! It opens the Gateway to the King's throne room or more likely I meet Him strolling in His field's. Affected me? During the week I encounter Him in the unlikeliest of places, such as a parking garage. He is overwhelming me with His Shekinah and Chesed.
I've been feeling spectacularly unspiritual this year. My cultural life has revolved around other people's creations rather than my own. I'm in deep thought mode at the moment.
I've continued to listen to Gabby Bernstein, Doreen Virtue, and others - meditations, their talks, their angel readings. I truly believe in much of what they have to say, and the belief that the universe has our back, the power of positive intention, and also things happening for a reason. When I laid eyes on Tim, I felt an overpowering connection to him. That moment was deeply spiritual for me.
Have had many out of body experiences this past year where I am going through the motions but feel as if I could be sleeping: both in high altitude climbing and at home. The insight has been into how involved the thought is behind the minutia of everyday experiences and how vast the world is for people who want to specialize in one thing and exceed better than all others.
Not really, no. I did have a moment a few days ago though when I skipped the gym and went straight home from work, put on some sweats and laid down on the couch and thought "I have never felt so comfortable in my entire life." It was a rare moment of peace. I dunno if that really counts as "spiritual" though.
Spirituality does not play a big part in my life. But I will say that while camping this year, I saw the Milky Way for the first time in many, many years. Seeing the vast expanse of space causes that feeling of lightness and amazement that I associate with spirituality.
Going to India for the first time was deeply spiritual. Feeling a different rhythm of life for a billion people in a completely different society was fascinating. That experience changed me for the better.
Very interesting question.....I have wanted to wait and have God send a person to me...instead of me looking....God has, however not in the right package...so still working on how to deal with it...
As a hospice volunteer, I had the experience of becoming friends with a 97 year old dying woman this past year. Mrs. B. was wonderful and wonderful for me. Mentally alert, sweet as honey, smart as a whip, well read and humorous, a former WAC in WWII, she was modest about her life. She lived a modest life, but her spirit was huge and generous. My visits to her home were full of affection and good discussions. I sang to her when she lay dying, told her I loved her, and I cried mightily when she died. I miss my friend Betty.
Due to a TBI in April, 2014, I went from not being able to meditate for almost one year (after meditating consistently for over 42 years) to restoring my practice, slowly, bit by bit. Very grateful to my spiritual teacher, sangha and good fortune that this has been possible. Returning to my practice is like coming home.
At Cape Henlopen I walked a little way away from the crowd and sat down and watched the water. It was wonderful and for a few minutes I felt completely at peace.
I am an atheist. But if we are defining a spiritual experience as a deeply emotional event that affects one to the core, changing long-held beliefs and bringing peace in its wake, the birth of my son was a rather spiritual experience for me. Not the actual delivery, which was a repeat c-section (and which terrified me more than the first one). Not the immediate postpartum period, which was a time of intense bonding with my first child; my son and I both suffered mild complications from childbirth, and were separated for a time shortly after he was born. But in the hospital, he and I had bonding moments more intense than those I shared with his sister during that time -- more intense than anything I've ever felt, to be honest. As I felt closer to his sister almost from the moment of conception, this was an extremely powerful experience for me. It changed the way I've thought about many things -- love, motherhood, even men. (For someday, my son will be a man. Likewise, every man on earth has been a baby like my son.) In his eyes I see both absolute innocence and deep wisdom. And pure, absolute love. It is my job to ensure that this love remains with him into adulthood. It seems to me that many men lose this as they grow up. My goal is to see to it that mine does not.
Sadly, this was not a year full of spirit and I am feeling terribly disconnected. I hope and pray that next year will be better.
I lost three family members within three months this year: my grandfather, my grandmother, and my uncle. Reflecting upon their lives has prompted me to consider what it means to be human and how we live our lives and the importance of connection. I still am not sure if God exists or what happens to us when we die, but I do think that we can find God in each other.
Nothing major. I keep up my practices, so there is ongoing peace and connectedness. There was some affirmation of a "theological viewpoint" that I've disagreed with: that God somehow causes everything in our lives and we find to find out why to accept it or learn from it. "God doesn't always have a reason for everything that happens; however, he makes reason out of everything that happens." A subtle but important distinction because it frees me from the struggle of working too hard for meaning and lets me focus on moving forward. "Why" may not change anything or even make it easier to accept, so just ask for grace and keep going.
Sitting with the new reform siddur, not during services but later, brought me a depth of peace that surprised me.
I love being outside in nature; it is very spiritual to me. A Sunday morning bike ride with my husband and/or my family on a beautiful morning is something that is very uplifting to me.
Everything feels a little more spiritual this year. I've felt calmness sweep over me in times when I was overwhelmed - this would not have happened in the past. I'm always on the lookout for the divine in every day life. I've also had some really interesting spiritual conversations with my 4 year old about God, the singularity of God, what and where God is - I think those conversations have sharpened my radar.
I have continued to walk the road of confessing the WORD Of God. I've seen my Grandson do exceptionally well in school and my acting career flourish. All things are working for my good by speaking the things God says about me.
This wasn't the year for spirituality, really — very few things can top going to Israel the year before. Yet I look back and realize that I am in the place I should be. G-d put me exactly where he wanted me and who he wanted around me. And that may not be spiritual, but I can't think of a better way of showing me that the universe has my back by derailing a path that was draining me and putting my railroad car back on the right track.
Breastfeeding my daughter past any anticipated timeline and reclaiming my relationship with my son. Pure magic....
Yes, Driving in Austin in February, on a trip by myself, listening to music, sunny weather. It felt like a meaningful moment when I was fully happy and comfortable. Free, fulfilled in my artistic pursuits, my replacement knees no longer reminding me of their presence, financially secure. Loved and loving. I am still working to overcome a lifetime of self doubt and negative noise. A revisit with mom at Joe's funeral in June brought it roaring back and I have spent the months since then fighting back. My trip to NH immediately after the funeral was a moment of connection with other women that helped kick start my recovery from my encounter with mom.
Truly grown into having a Church family, a great Mens group on Friday and Sunday, and a good group of Christian friends. This has vastly changed my life in the daily comfort and peace I have. I love having a wife I can share faith with and discuss faith with. And I have found a great balance and affordability of my time to pray, be in the word and just bond with fellow Christians. It makes for a comfortable ability to ponder life challenges and have people to support me in the thinking, resolving, and enjoying that comes with those challenges. Traveling and working with nonprofits across the globe outside of my normal day to day work has also added another dimension to my spiritual life and allowed me to further enjoy God's great work in my life.
Two years ago at this time I had a peak spiritual experience. Since then I've been trying to "follow" when I am "called" and trying to be mindful when it's my own voice I'm responding to. On a good day, I'm just in the middle. I strive for that balance and for being okay with that. That said periodically I'm spiritually aroused by Jerusalem's beauty and the areas surrounding her or by an uplifting piece of music.
The Newport Folk Fest slapped me in the face and reminded me art and expression and communication are all on the highest plane of spirituality. It was, as always, a beautiful time in a beautiful place. It was time spent making art, being creative, catching up with old friends, watching music, laughing, seeing my son take it in and contribute to it. There's a summer camp vibe to working there. You can check your problems (along with your ego) at the door, but your problems are welcome, too; it's up to you. If you decide to bring them in, you're allowed and even enabled to discuss them openly and freely amongst friends and acquaintances who have all checked their egos at the door. You get to laugh with people about your problems. You get to remember that your problems are not very unique and not at all insurmountable. You feel better. It was a lesson in what I firmly believe yet sometimes forget: that experiencing joy - individually and communally - is what this is all about. My god I love it there.
I do not experience spirituality like I used to, which I think is the unfortunate side effect of being a rabbi. It's not like when I went to the JCA and prayed with Rabbi Bauer or to Riverdale Temple in my youth. My biggest spiritual experience this year was going to an Indigo Girls concert with Tracy in New Jersey and hearing my new favorite song "Elizabeth" performed live. Nothing brings me closer to G-d than the Indigo Girls - especially live. I can't wait to see them again in November!
When I am in nature, I feel my spirit refresh and strengthen. I am renewed by my daughter and my friends. I find spirituality in community and purpose. This has been a year of reflecting about life and death, of ending and beginning. My resilience has been a well upon which to draw.
I believe that every moment can be, if tapped into, a spiritual moment. In my work, I connect on a deep plane with many and have those "aha" moments of depth beyond what any "religion" can offer. I just created my website and that was an artistic spiritual moment for me. A moment of "I am able to do this! I am competent! I succeeded and it was fun!" Being with my mother after being diagnosed with cancer has been dewdropped with spiritual moments. My artistic aunt's death and the drama surrounding the estate has been touched by spirit...as she brought light and depth to others through her garden and work. Upon selling her beautiful home and magical garden, spiritually...was a moment of release...difficult yet vitally important for my growth.
Singing the "niggunim" in Utah at the REALITY Outside gathering was spiritual in the sense that it was a raising of voices together. I love singing!!
I keep being struck by the thought that things are just as they should be, and that there is beauty and wonder in every moment. I've been re-reading Annie Dillard's fabulous book Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. The book reminds me that there is so much in this world to be grateful for, and it doesn't matter where it came from but that we notice and take joy in all things.
Unfortunately, no. But going to the Sephardic Synagogue was a good experience and not at all what I had thought it would be.
I have grown so much in my love for Judaism in the past year. I am head-over-heels in love! I have never been happier or more fulfilled in my entire life. Everything just fits so well, I feel like I am reaching a higher plane of existence. I especially get a lot out of Rabbi Feder's class and Rabbi Alper's Torah study that I attend. Every time I emerge with wonderful new ideas that give me a fresher, deeper understanding of what it means to be human and what it means to be Jewish.
Realizing how truly blessed I am with the people around ne
If learning more about an awful time in history can be spiritual I guess I can say seeing a play loosely based on a true story of survivors of the Armenian genocide was spiritual. In the story two survivors of loss and in the case of the woman rape find love in an arranged marriage that is initially problematic. it is a testament to resilience.
Secular spiritual? No, I haven't had any secular spiritual experiences but I did eat some vegan chicken breast and drank a big glass of dairy-free cow's milk. What the hell? are you people fucking idiots? Why use language if you don't even care what the words mean? You're better off grunting and rolling in the mud like a bunch of tiny brained wild pigs. For fuck's sake. No. To answer your asinine question, I haven't had any "Spiritual" experiences this year because I deal in real life and real life is shit. Either we are rich and we fuck people so our lives are easy or they are poor and they get fucked so our lives are easy. You're a moron if you think anything else is possible.
Yes, from the day before my son was diagnosed with leukemia until two days after, I had the most unbearable painful knot in my stomach that was indescribable. I couldn't eat or sleep, until being a professional musician I played a gig. I sang the song "Yes We Can" & I felt the knot in my stomach untangle.
When I learned how to build a robot that can communicate with squirrels. The ability to make a machine that can communicate with a creature that no human can inspired me.
The spiritual moment that moved me was that I felt for the first time in awhile that my dirty little 'secret' was not in fact a hindrance. I'm talking about my depression. The fact that I have depression should not make me feel as if I am inferior to other men. My rabbi helped me discover who better to help someone through depression than someone who has had depression. Once I attain gainful employment again, I look forward to dating anew.
I'm an agnostic working at a Catholic University who is surrounded with religion. The closest thing I've experienced to being spiritual is attending a Kundalini Yoga session. While other people were wrapped up that side of it, I was happy for the breathing techniques because I was too busy focusing on my lungs and mouth to "over-think."
I don't have the same type of practice I used to. But I feel like I have a built in spiritual sense that I respect and feels respected. There are other senses things that I experience, and I work at deciphering them and connecting to what they have to tell me. It's an area I'd like to invest more time and energy to cultivating.
It has been a year of many spiritual experiences and moments... The one that comes to mind right now is I recently visited some caves and natural paradise in the northern part of my country. The caves have stalactites and stalagmites that look like sugar, wax, sand, stars... just different textures and light. These were and are sacred places for Mayan populations and I was there. With my sister. I was able to grasp the different caves and the beauty with all my senses. One part of the caves has a river still flowing through it, and a section of it, with the light coming in looking like a cylinder, was very similar to a place I think of/see when I meditate. It was breathtaking.
When my former partner reached out to me in March, asking if I was ready to be friends with her, I told her that I needed a week to think about it. During that week, my grandmother, who had had Alzheimer's disease for 20 years, finally passed away. This was the same day as the Spring Equinox, and with the change in season + longer days, a light shone on my feelings. I called my former partner back and said, "I don't want to be your friend. I am still in love with you. I want to date you long distance." We talked every day for the next two months and she finally accepted my offer when I visited her in May. I decided that I would figure out when and how to move to her city in the near future. That series of events has been a new chapter in my life, one where I moved to a new city, am dating someone whom I love for the second time, and plan on starting a new career in the next few months. I am listening more carefully to what my mind/heart/body is saying and following their guidance has made my life a fascinating journey in facing my fears.
Once again, nope, not really. I didn't go to Burning Man, I haven't been going to Church. I'm starting to feel a bit Charlie Brown about the whole thing - "I got a psychoemotional rock."
There was a beautiful, vibrant, amazing rainbow in the sky about a month ago. It was the most amazing rainbow I had ever seen, and it lasted for nearly an hour. It was truly a very moving experience for me to see such beauty!
I heard the bells at Notre Dame and they filled me with pure wonder. I saw a show called The Nether. I also saw Waiting for Godot for the first time. It was about everything and it could have been about anything. It encompasses everything. The nothingness of everything. It was and is transcendent. I feel less connected to God and Judaism through prayer and I feel much more connected through community and social action and learning. I feel that when I learn I am excited and stimulated and feel proud to be Jewish. I feel no desire to pray. I watched a video of the surface of the sun and for those 10 minutes I did not believe in God and it terrified me. I understood the vastness of feeling nothing out there and it scared me so much.
No. None whatsoever. Although I may wish for belief, I'm afraid I'll die that lone Atheist in the foxhole.
This past year I received a blessing from a Buddhist monk on a hill overlooking Phuket, I watched the slaughter of chickens and goats during Dashain at Dakshinkali, I snapped sugarcane into fireworks for Shivaratri in the Annapurnas, I meditated on South Beira Lake in Colombo, I gave a eulogy in Los Angeles, I watched a dragon dance in Penang, I received bhai tika for Tihar at an orphanage in Kathmandu, I danced at a Punjabi wedding in Chicago, I threw rose petals over Sufi shrines in Delhi, I prayed at the Western Wall and visited the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jeruslaem, I saw dervishes whirl in Istanbul, and I sat in silent temples in Hanoi. Each experience was spiritual in its own way. Each event made me feel more holy, understanding, and compassionate. Each new ritual made me more steadfast in my Jewish values and traditions.
I was particularly touched by a lecture that was given by Rabbi Joseph Telushkin last fall when he came to Winnipeg to speak about his book "Rebbe" about the Lubavitcher Rebbe Menachem Mendel Shneerson. I have tried to use the Rebbe's wisdom in my everyday life to find inner strength to achieve my goals and make positive change in the world around me. I was inspired by the Rebbe's vision to reach out to the far corners of the earth by sending emissaries to act as Jewish role models. What is most inspirational about this initiative is that is obliges people who live in a comfortable bubble, where practicing Judaism is easy, to settle in places where no one really knows about what Judaism has to offer and they have no support group. These "shlichim" leave the comfort of their communities to share the beauty of Judaism and ensure that every Jew has the opportunity to KNOW. What I have learnt is that when we live in a small community we have the obligation to live as Jewish role models without judging others yet making a difference in their lives.
The most 'spiritual' experiences I've had are morning walks when the sun is just coming over the horizon and shining on the dew on the grass - it makes me remember that my world & my life are wonderful and I try to hold on to that feeling thru the day (with varying degrees of success).
We spent alot of time this summer at our family cottage. My life became very quiet there and I could focus on the important things in life. Lying on the dock with my eyes closed feeling the sun and the water moving below me was nothing but spiritual. I felt closer to the big world and to myself. Religiously, the most spiritual moment of the year for me is when our rabbi blows the shofar signalling the end of Yom Kippur. Over the years he has encouraged congregants to bring their own shofars and the sound of them all blown at the same time is one of the most inspiring and spiritual sounds I know. In that moment I am rooted in my Judaism.
Seeing out good friend become ordained as a rabbi, then take over our congregation, has been a miraculous answer to years of prayer. He vows to "bring G-d back into the synagog" and he is doing just that. Each service is a profound and overwhelming experience of G-d's presence.
I try to always be aware of the "still, small voice". One recent, insistent occurrence was when I stopped my morning prayer routine, thinking it was futile. In the ensuing days came constant reminders in the form of tv/radio clips, conversations, readings, to not give up. My routine has resumed.
I became a vegan. All my life I've cringed and cried at the suffering of animals. There's been a conflict inside of me for as long as I could remember, but I shoved it aside to join the herd. As I learned more about factory farming I completely eliminated red meat, but still ate dairy, fish and chicken. But, the feeling of remorse was still there. After a month-long liquid cleanse in April, I transitioned to a completed vegan diet. I am finally at peace with myself and no longer feel gnawing guilt over being a participant in animal cruelty. My husband's a carnivore, but he cooks for me and as a nice side effect, has seen his cholesterol drop to unprecedented lows. (We have no issues over our divergent diets.) Filling my tummy with beautiful living vegetables and fruits, wholesome grains and legumes, is like filling myself with happiness. It's pretty spiritual.
I started a daily meditation practice for the first time in my life and it's helping me manage my stress and emotions more than years of therapy did. When I'm upset with someone, it helps me to take a step back and think about what I share in common with them. I'm also glad I went to Rosh Hashanah service this year, and I want to join a temple and go to services more regularly.
I cannot think of one in particular, but I will say that I am deeply moved when I am in nature and see something particularly beautiful such as Cannon Beach in Oregon. I also marvel at the unfolding intellect and oersonality of my 7 year old grandson.
I saw Rhiannon Giddeons play a show in Sommerville last spring. Her music is so moving and uplifting. She is truly talented and each song was powerful, strengthening feelings of connectedness, and grounding me in the moment.
Can't think of anything except my recent experience watching my nephew's pure joy on a silly carnival ride and crying my eyes out. his joy, his pleasure -- just him -- continues to hit me hard. (not to mention his pain and sorrow).
I would have to say the aftermath of my wife and my first fight. The argument started because she made a comment about how fast I drive over speed bumps and spiraled out of control to the point where I said she has no idea how I feel because she still has both her parents. She left and threatened to stay with her mom that night. I sat there on my kitchen floor an emotional wreck wondering what happened and how we got there. In the silence God comforted me and spoke to me, he helped me realize how important my wife is, and how stupid we both were being. It hasn't been sunshine and rainbows since, but we're getting better.
When I discovered the live camera feeds of the Western Wall, I realized that I could be there 24/7 -- it became a constant reminder that I am never alone, that G-d is with me and that I need not be afraid. I've had much more confidence than I've had in years, even though my body is failing me, I know that perseverance will carry me through, for my G-d is with me.
I was having a lovely drive into work this morning in the sunshine and my iPhone was set to shuffle... Queen's 'You're my best friend' came on. As I was listening my brain added its own visuals as it often does (a function of my job methinks...). I saw me and my brother riding our bikes, making our dens, climbing trees, building fires, burning magnesium, nailing it around the field in William's go cart, playing handball in the corridor, badminton in the courtyard, relentlessly throwing the baseball at each other. I saw my brother looking out for me, the best protector and the righteous leader. I realised that he's the best best friend I've ever had. The experience felt pretty spiritual!
Not so much. I read a good book or two, finished a TV show, saw a few good movies. Baked some good stuff. There's not a lot going on in this area these days. We're still pretty isolated geographically. We're moving to a big city in two weeks, and I hope that next year I have more in this area. I'm hoping to establish some kind of art practice - a pottery studio perhaps - and to visit museums and such with the kids. Maybe the theater or orchestra.
Regular meditation and a retreat at Tassajara seem to fit in this category. These along with some of the reading I've been doing on meditation and brain science have helped me in being more accepting of my own and others' experiences. Very much a work in progress.
No, I haven't. I don't think I really perceive experiences to be "spiritual." I kinda don't like the word--it seems woo-woo to me.
Well..... the one where we were in the veterinarian ER having to put our dog Weasel (the third!) to sleep (she was 14 + years) and as we were in the room saying good-bye I got a message from our breeder that her dog was having puppies RIGHT THEN. Our Weasel (the fourth) was being born as we were putting Weasel (the third) to sleep. I think you can't get more spiritual than that!
I've had a lot of disappointing and unsatisfying prayer experiences with my community. And a lot of satisfying prayer experiences every day praying by myself. I feel a little more centered with daily prayer and a little more sensitive to the fact that my local Jewish community is so disappointing to me.
Going to the Ryman Auditorium is like going to church for me. It is an old church, and you sit in pews. I had two spiritual experiences. One on Halloween last year, when the Foo Fighters played for three hours, until 2 a.m. following the airing of their show about music in Nashville. They played old songs, covers, I saw a guy in a Santa costume dive from the sacred stage, I was with three of my best friends (which includes my husband), it was just incredible, in this special place that means so much to me. The second was Ryan Adams in April. He wasn't a jackass. He wasn't complaining about the crowd like he did in St. Louis when I saw him in October. Instead, he did a sincere cover of Bryan Adams, which was hilarious. But for the spiritual portion, Jason Isbell, another one of my favorite songwriters, came out to sing "Sixteen Days," my all-time favorite Whiskeytown song, and it was so beautiful. At the end of the show, Ryan, who notoriously hates encores, came out for one song. All of us on the floor went up closer, and I touched the Ryman stage for the first time after 20+ shows there. I know it's cliche, but it moved my spirit to be so connected to the music, and the history, and something that could only happen in my home city.
Interestingly enough, my most spiritual experiences have really been in therapy. The insights I have gained into myself and my past have really opened me up to a whole range of different emotions and connections. When I pray I can now access different desires and hopes that I was unable to do at any other point in my life. I am hopeful that 5776 will allow me to make even more progress in these areas.
Indeed yes. I spent six months getting to know and love a gentleman who was more broken and wounding than I had initially realized. I made the decision to end the relationship. As I wept and grieved that loss, I felt prompted to take hold of my own arms and say to myself, "I will not abandon you. I won't make you go through such crap again. I won't make you eat shit anymore." I finally realized that I have allowed myself to be mistreated in many relationships, had a lifelong habit of accepting it. Now I was being invited by God to embrace and care for myself the way that God wants me to, to treat myself as compassionately as I would treat others, the way God treats me. I believe and hope that this experience will mark a new era of self-respect in my life which will benefit many.
I don't really define religious experiences as spiritual, and I'm a bit suspicious of spirituality. I've only had one truly mystical experience in my life, and I'm aware that it came after drinking a fourth cup of wine at a particularly late seder after fasting on the day leading up to the seder. It could have been the equivalent of the bit of undigested cheese that Scrooge says is to blame for the appearance of Marley's ghost -- not a spiritual/mystic manifestation, but a trick of physiology and environment. All that said, I've felt a connection to community and to the deep necessity to act to make the world a better place -- sometimes when dovening, sometimes when writing, sometimes when learning Talmud. Sometimes, I think the truly spiritual experience is feeling the pain of the world, feeling how little I can do to alleviate that pain, and doing something anyway.
My family hiked iron mountain to spread my grandfathers ashes this August. It was his favorite place in Oregon and he especially loved the wildflowers. It was a truly spectacular hike, and we took time to identify flowers and enjoy the scenery. At the top, we shared some memories and scattered his ashes. Right as my mom finished, a butterfly flew up through his ashes and out into the expanse. We all took a breath, and started to cry. We hadn't seen any butterflies the whole trip up the mountain, and didn't see another on the way down. This butterfly felt like a final goodbye to my grandfather, and it was intensely spiritual to share that moment with my family.
Waking up to some person issues that I've been ignoring for many years. I'm making an honest attempt to resolve them. We will see how it goes. Some of it requires being honest with self about some things instead of blocking them out.
Traveling in Eastern Europe gave me an enormous perspective about the devastation of ALL people in the countries that hosted wars. Yes, the Jewish people were singled out and the stories were life altering - but so were the stories about devastation of all countries and all people. This, to me, was a spiritual experience.
Santana´s concert was definitely Supernatural!
Yes, I have had many spiritual experiences this past year but the first one that comes to mind was the afternoon I met my late husbands' ex-wife. They had been estranged for many years as she had an affair right around the time my husband lost his mother to breast cancer so there was no hope of re-connection due to the severe pain he was experiencing. I made a point of someone finding her and informing her of my husbands' terminal cancer diagnosis and eventually his passing. She never had a chance to explain herself or speak to him again. She eventually wrote me a letter of sympathy and I wrote back and said I would be happy communicate as little or as much as she wanted. As it turns out her father lived at the VA in the town where I was working on a project for a local chef (my husband was working for this same chef in NY when he was married to this woman). I met her father which was very spiritual in itself and it led to her contacting me next time she was in town. We met and her mother had compiled a photo album of her life with my husband for me to see. We sat for four hours talking about their life, our life, the end of his life. Aside from my husband dying it was perhaps one of the most moving, powerful, and spiritually enriching experience I have ever had. A true gift.
This is a tough one, I think the most spiritual experience was going on a wonderful trail ride at my new barn while thinking of Jeffrey whom the startbox was being decorated for. I texted him the night I got engaged, and that was the last we ever spoke as he passed away the next morning. I am still mourning my amazing friend and miss him terribly. Always in my heart Jeffrey, always <3
Growing up I went to church and continued on and off through college and the two years after. However, since moving to New York I haven't been to church at all. It's been invigorating, isolating, and eye opening. I've loved my Sunday mornings without going to church. I can sleep in, grab breakfast, or walk the dogs. It's taught me about my faith and spirituality on my own without a community. However, on the other side of that there isn't the community. I don't have people to discuss ideas with that have similar faith. Allowing myself to be alone has reminded me that alone doesn't mean lonely. I can firmly proclaim my beliefs without the background noise of other peoples' thoughts and opinions on what I believe.
Climbing Untersberg mountain in Salzburg, Austria gave me some pretty profound realizations about the nature of success and the journey to get there. It's really important to enjoy the view on the way to try to reach a summit, even when and especially when you have a limited time and may not reach that summit. If you forget to look around, you've missed the point of why you're there in the first place.
Just sitting in services has been a spiritual experience - sometimes even moved to tears just by being with others. Having the experience of singing with others (as part of a religious event or otherwise) has been intensely spiritual as well - something just "clicks".
I had a few spiritual experiences. The one that stands out at this moment was a week long Interfaith Partners for Peace Mission to Israel this past spring. Visiting, studying and praying together at Christian and Jewish holy sites with Ministers, Rabbis and lay leaders was very spiritual; I found the fellowship and friendships that were born on that mission transformed the week into a true pilgrimage for me. Wrestling with the challenges of Israeli and Palestinian, and Jewish, Christian and Moslem coexistence moving towards peace and love was a truly remarkable experience where I felt the divine presence as part of our dialogue.
People have described me as being spiritual. It is perhaps one of my greatest gifts, although not something I actively cultivate, or experience frequently. Always around the high holidays, I miss my beloved parents. I remember walking to shul alongside my father. We lived in a small town in Oklahoma, and many people would come outside on their porches to stare and perhaps wonder if horns would appear. About every two years, I go back to services there; it has been a profound spiritual experience. I begin to cry almost immediately and must work hard not to show my tears.I guess I feel in touch with my ancestors and the Almighty, though my parents came from Europe. My dad founded this Hebrew Center with five other immigrants and somehow it is still standing. The service is much different, and people of mixed religions come, and also some who aren't jewish. We all go to lunch at a small sandwich shop and talk and learn about each other. The person who organizes this is in his eighties now, and was the son of a founding father. The truth is that each time I go to any synagogue, I am overwhelmed with emotion. Not sure this qualifies as having a spiritual experience, but I have others related to music and nature!
I've been crying a lot at podcasts lately. During particularly touching moments I'll water up a little - but it feels good! I like the release. That didn't start happening until a few months ago. Maybe it is because of the stress associated with my ongoing struggles with Kayla... We'll see! The other spiritual moment of my year happened on Day 3 of my bike trip with Nate - during this day we rode the Great Allegheny Pass trail. When we were approaching the top of it things really got beautiful. It was sunny and perfect temperature and the hills were lit up! There were picturesque towns and lots of cool train bridges. Then we went through Big Savage tunnel and popped out into an idyllic part of the world! And spent the next 20miles coasting down into Cumberland, MD! :) What a beautiful way to bike 145 miles!
Yes, very clearly spiritual... While going through some serious health issues and the possibility for a serious surgery, I could "see" and feel my parents standing tall, looking young, assuring me that they were there. My favorite uncle was with them. It startled me at first, but then I felt the love and warmth of their presence, guiding me.
A lot of my answers this year have centered on my children, but I think there is no spiritual experience I have had like birthing a child. It brings you close to life and death and the truly miraculous event of creating a new person. It has made me think about why death exists and that it neeeds to in order for the next generation to experience all life has to offer and all its stages. The most spiritual experiences I have are watching my children appreciate life and holding them close.
Finding Improv within the past year has been a spiritual awakening of a sort. It's been very helpful in getting over some of my social anxieties. I'm still frustrated by it often and nervous now that I'm about to finish the final level of classes this week, but I do find that it has completely changed my life.
As the Christian Right works hard to outlaw abortion, birth control, gay marriage, and immigration while making sure we all have guns, and the New Agers add more and more foods to the evil list and even weirder things to the list of substances that will cure all diseases, I find myself being drawn more and more to atheism.
Chautauqua. Maine. California. Chautauqua, as always. Just being there makes me happy and fully immersing myself in Chautauqa lake is like no other feeling in the world - I just feel an incredible connection to the place. Maine was beautiful - nature surrounded by nature surrounded by ocean. It was incredible to sleep with a view of the ocean and the smell of the ocean and to wake up to that sight and smell every morning. Watching the sunset over the islands and the ocean was a dream, and the best part was being on the rowboat during the sunset, drinking a beer, and dragging my hand through the ice cold water. Also fully immersing myself in the ice cold ocean water was pretty insane and awesome. Being in Yosemite with nobody around and just me and Ben on a mountain surrounded by natural beauty was pretty surreal. I guess nature is what makes me feel at peace with myself and with the world. Science and nature are my religion.
I hate to say learning shiatsu is a spiritual experience but only because the word spiritual is often tied with "religious" and therefore makes some closed to an experience. After experiencing being "shamed" for the person that God made me, I had gone through a time where my faith was challenged. It was a bit sad at the time but I am ultimately thankful for it. It made me seek other perspectives - there HAD to be something that didn't view me as less than or as a sinner. I didn't actively seek at first because I trusted that I would be shown this which I believed to be true. Then as I studied anatomy, physiology, all sciences, and humanity, fine arts and martial arts and technology and the wonders of how the mind works... I realized that these things brought me closer to God. With all of those miraculous things happening and the similarities between them, all in a beautiful synchronized and sometimes asynchronous but the innate ability to feel when this is happening... how can we not be spiritual? I hope one day we can realize the similarities and *discuss* our differences and expand our view with being true to our culture... It can't be al that different...
Being in Europe----at Terezin and Auschwitz and in Tarnobrzeg---was spiritual in a sad, but meaningful way. Thinking about the millions who died and those who survived made me thankful for all those who took risks and were lucky and allowed me and my family to be here in 2015.
It's funny, but this year there hasn't yet been the feeling I call spiritual. Perhaps there's been too much focus on the real, the practical and the recovery and healing to open my heart to a deeper experience. I can only hope that with some peace and closure, spiritual moments will come in the future.
This is super recent, but Rosh Hashanah at Romemu was amazing! I loved the ruach of the community, and am eager to experience a Shabbat with their young professional group there. I also had a few spiritual moments at CLTC, particularly during Shabbat/Havdallah. The emotions of being at camp, the community songs, the summer…it was a huge reminder of why I do what I do, and why I fall in love with Jewish again and again.
I've had many spiritual experiences. I think the most spiritual experience I had was the Shabbat Shacharit I went to accidentally at the Leader minyan. I thought I was going to Tzod Tziach and it turned into a service I really got in to. The tunes were great and it had a primal feel that I really enjoyed.
I had an epiphany moment when I realized the AI platform my start up company is building is actually a digital brain that could help people understand themselves and each other. For a brief moment, I was seized with terror at the capacity of this thing. My friend and CTO saw the look on my face when he was explaining the technology, and put a hand on my shoulder and said, "Do not be afraid." Those were the right words at the right time because those exact words are inscribed, a part of Bible scripture, on a framed picture of a little girl in darkness holding a lamp that my parents gave me when I was 4 years old, having nightmares. My mom still has it up in her house. My parents gave each of their kids a different artwork bearing a different scripture they picked specially for each of us. Mine has always served me well over the years.
I got to spend several days sitting by the ocean. It was very relaxing and fulfilling.
Machu Piccu was pretty spiritual- hiking to the spiritual city the same way that the Incas did really helped me understand their culture. It was great to be removed from technology and truly connected to the land and the elements and the weather.
No. But that is not for lack of trying. At church, I keep getting sucked into the "tasks" of church at the cost of meeting my spiritual needs. The closest I came to feeding my soul was a 6 day trip to Glacier National Park by myself. The time in the car was restorative -- I got to look nature and list to music and step away from the tasks that take up my time. I am not much about the outdoors, but time in GNP helped me recover from a very difficult year.
Two come to mind. When I was consistently meditating for 10 to 20 minutes a day, there were a few brief moments of feeling "weightless." Meaning, I felt disconnected from my body (in a none-alarming way) and a sense of peace. I have also rediscovered my love of the outdoors and hiking, which I believe is quite meditative (repetitive walking plus silence plus nature) There have been a few moments where I was overcome by peacefulness, feeling connected to the world around me. I usually don't notice until the feeling is gone.
I took a camping trip this summer and there were a few physical experiences that felt quite spiritual - Mystic Hot Springs in Utah, as well as climbing to the top of Angel's Landing in Zion National Park (also in Utah).
I think Brian's wedding was spiritual for me, though perhaps I'm saying that because it's more recent. Brian's wedding was just an eye-opening experience into the kind of person I both am and could be. I don't think I would like to be quite as hippie dippy as the people I met there, but I loved the environment, the people, the mood, the mentality, enough that I would like to encompass some of that into my life, if possible. It gives me inspiration to maybe go traveling next year. As I reflect more with these questions about my past year, I also think about what Judaism means to me, and I think I've learned about myself that I can be religious and feel close to my faith without being an avid Shabbat service-goer, etc. I also really appreciated the conversations I had with one of my leaders, Tamar, as well as my other friends on Birthright. Our interpretations of what Judaism means to us individually is one of the many reasons why the Jewish faith is so special. As I grow and mature, I realize more how Judaism is very important to me, even if I don't always show it as much as I used to.
Over the last year I have had 2 of my sculptures stolen/damaged and it has been a difficult journey to move on and through the various aspects of the experience while maintaining my passion. I want to continue the work I am called to do without that momentary hesitation about what will happen to it. I am learning to be in the moment in the act of creating, which is for me a spiritual practice.
Working with the bereaved of our church it has struck me how some people are more at peace with death in general than are others. A friend lost her mother at 103. She was not in any way ready or emotionally prepared to part with her mother.
I had a magical time in Hawaii in August. I got to go snorkeling, reconnect with old friends, swim with a sea turtle, and just have lots of memorable moments. The time at the Buddhist temple in the Valley of the Temples was also amazing.
Shavuot. Really, anytime I'm at Isabella Freedman. I love it. So much. The connection to the Earth, Community, and Judaism is the trifecta of connection. Singing and dancing for the holiday is terrific. Beyond terrific. There are no words terrific. My soul is duly uplifted and my cup runneth over with joy. The moment when the sun rose over the lake and we sang for the Torah and the Jewish people was a soul rising moment of joy and bliss. I am uplifted because of it and am so grateful and blessed for the opportunity.
Honestly every day... every morning when I wake up, I am amazed that it happens, the process, the sun coming into the window. It is such a blessing. I try to sit in the enormity of the mundane and how truly amazing it is, whenever the day feels long or a moment just another moment.... Also every time my daughter smiles.
The most spiritual experience this year I had was at the vipassana retreat that I attended in August. It woke me up. I could actively see how much my negative, mean-spirited thoughts were coloring my world. I saw how much pain I was/am in and how I had tried my best to ignore that. That retreat really solidified how much healing I still need but it also made me so much stronger internally. I can sit with my hard emotions more. I feel like I am leaps ahead of where I used to be. I feel my old stories are slipping away and I am learning to be in the moment more and more each day.
I feel that this is the first year of my life that i have been able to wake with gratitude - at least true consciousness of the state of mind i have as i begin the day, the proejections im bringing into it, and create a space, an interstice, a bit of equanimity, to choose a more positive perspective. i believe this is a true spiritual awakening.
No. I did a little more research on my sleeping disorder, which is the closest to anything "spiritual" that I experience now. It has a new name: Hypnagogia. So, yay for all the people who worried they were going crazy - We're not crazy, just funky. I was also interviewed for a book because of my hypnagogia. A horror book, no less. I'm at the point where I no longer worry what it means. But I hope. I hope it's not nothing. I hope I'm seeing something in that "beyond". I hope, for all our sakes, that this is our next step in consciousness.
I had a spiritual experience while on a silent retreat. During this time I was able to reflect on the aspects of my life that was affecting me and learn how i need to talk time to just breath and reflect on the beauty of life. This also allowed me to appreciate the many blessing of my life such as growing up in my childhood home, being surrounding by supportive and energetic people, and having the opportunity to help those who are otherwise rejected by society.
Deeper understanding of the pain on this planet and how lucky I am to have the family I have.
Nope. It's been a year too hectic and eventful. I haven't really had time to reflect or seek the spiritual. The lack has affected me. I'm off my game, out of focus.I need to read the tao of pooh, or the like, to try to regain some of my cool.
My Bar Mitzvah was certainly a spiritual experience.
Not this year, too,full of sadness, death, illness,m it realization that friends are my best asset, m
In February, I was diagnosed with epididymitis, inflammation of the seminary tubules, and was incapacitated in excruciating pain for almost 2 months and the pain and discomfort lasted until early September. When I started my new job, many things happened in the span of a week and a half: my ex girlfriend was sleeping with a former close friend in my room of the house I allowed him to sublet, my epididymitis became chronic, I was diagnosed with latent acid reflux, and I had a cyst surgically drained on my chest. Throughout all of this, I was being pushed to my limit at MIT to learn everything I possibly could. Despite all of my pain and upheaval, I stayed positive, happy, and kept moving forward with a smile on my face. My sheer willpower to remain upbeat in the midst of my hell inspired me and made me truly believe that life is an incredible adventure, and I have indomitable will. I cannot be beaten down, and that knowledge gives me strength I never knew I had.
While I believe I am a fairly religious person, every now and then I feel overwhelmed by a "spiritual experience." Most of them do not occur while I am at Temple, but when I am outside. When I see a rainbow arc above the landscape, a field of wildflowers, a stunning tree whose leaves have turned brilliant colors, I feel connected to the hand of God and say a prayer of thanksgiving for all that I have been blessed with.
Yes, a few eye opening events. My friend Aimee's vegan/veg event, a few documentaries and books that followed including Earthlings and Eating Animals, as well as event hosted by my friend Tiffany of Diversability which was a documentary filming for "When I Walk."
I still find myself really at odds with the whole concept of spirituality. At this moment in time I'm facing down yet another potentially life altering health crisis. If there was ever a time to make a connection with spirituality this would be it. But I feel like a speck in a vast unfeeling universe.
Continuing to try and connect with the Universe and feel that the world really is on my side is a day to day struggle. I feel spiritual when listening to motivational tapes with compilations featuring Les Brown or Tony Robbins. That contentedness is palpable.
Yes! every time I am in my garden I feel in contact with the divine!
The weird thing is that as I get older, I feel less and less connected to the world of the spirit. When I was a teenager, and even as a young adult, I felt moments of divinity. Since becoming a mother, those moments (the awe-inspiring, jaw-dropping ones) seem to be in short supply. Instead, I'm consumed with tiny details and hardly have time to see the big picture. But when I do - when I look at a photo from when my son (now nearly 7) was a baby or a toddler, and I can see the passage of the years - it's stunning and stops me in my tracks. 7 short years ago, he came Earthside. And in a month, this new baby will be a year old! The everyday moments of their lives don't feel so holy or sacred in the moment, but on reflection, they're more holy than any experiences I've ever had before.
Leaving my teaching job at a Catholic school that claimed to be spiritual has impacted my relationship with the word and the experiences attached to it. Watching people use religion and spirituality as a way to define, confine, and oppress is a tough battle to fight against day after day for years. I think the most profound spiritual experience is coming out of that fog - moving from a job where I was in survival mode emotionally, always battling some misogynistic or bigoted administrator, protecting students and fighting for them just to be able to do my job - and moving into a place that is more in alignment with who I am and what I believe has allowed me to see how unhappy I was for so long and how that negativity permeated so many other parts of my life. Living a life that is more closely aligned with my beliefs and opens space up to reconnect with friends and family has been enlightening - I've missed out on a lot and people have missed out on me. I have sacrificed a lot of self care and am so glad I stopped rolling my eyes long enough to embrace life coaching - it has made a huge huge difference in my thinking and well being.
I have had a few spiritual experience this year. They all involve nature and its exposure of G-D's hand in giving us beauty.
Yes: I divorced an abusive partner who is studying to be a rabbi, and almost none of her classmates even bothered to check in on me. I am also close friends with one of the women sexually abused by Rabbi Barry Freundel in DC. I have learned not to equate "spiritual people" with good, altruistic people.
What beautiful experience isn't spiritual in nature (for me)? One of the best this year was going to the Rothko Chapel in Houston. It was a moving experience - but a sorrowful one. I felt that I could feel the suffering of so many people. And I wanted to hold that suffering and let myself feel it. Because it's real - it exists and I usually try to forget that it does. But it's important to let it really sink and remember that suffering is a part of life. I don't know what it's purpose is or what I should do about it exactly - but I do know this - that my job as a fellow human is to be with people who are suffering. Not necessarily to stop the suffering (sometimes you can't), but to be there with people who are suffering.
I haven't been a very spiritual person for the past couple of years, however this year, I focused all of my energy on getting a home. And that task brought out of me the faith that I had closed away. I took the task as far as I possibly could, did all the leg work necessary, and then I prayed. I prayed to the universe, I prayed to God, I prayed the the Divine Child, I even prayed to my fairies. I don't think I had ever prayed so much and with such concentration in my life. For this I am also thankful, as it shows that I have been blessed with all that I need which is a health for my family and I, strength to work and push through the curve balls that life throws at times, and family. I honestly believe that a big part of my obtaining a home was because of my prayers and the good that was coming out of me during my time of need. I found myself being more patient and understanding with people. I was much more available to everyone around me because I limited myself from spending money and wasting time on frivolous things. I felt humbled and I was being a genuinely good person. I found myself being more productive and stable. Today I wake up in my home and look out the window and I am filled with gratitude. I thank the Universe, God, the Divine Child and my fairies every single chance that I get. And I have continued to lead a limited yet stable and productive life. I continue to spend quality time with those around me and I am patient and understanding with everyone. My new found spirituality this year has helped me realize that every day everyone is just trying to do the best they can. And I am no different.
The most spiritual experience I have had this year was seeing the northern lights in Iceland. After the heavy and emotional day we had following the accident at Jokularson, and the fact that you shouldn't expect to see the Northern Lights at the time of year that we went, to have seen what I saw in the sky was as close to the largest spiritual experience I ever expect to have. It was unlike anything I have ever seen. It made me feel that it was the woman whose life was lost in the tragedy, her spirit dancing in the sky. Video taken from Iceland on that night- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QSInXru09lw
Any time I get to be with my family in a large group feels like a spiritual experience. I was with my family for my moms 85 birthday and so many people were there who I love so deeply. It keeps me grounded in gratitude for the richness in my life
Not spiritual. I've been spiritually void. Artist, yes! Playing amazing music with my friend Austin that I help continues to grow. The music is so good, I'd consider quitting my 100k/yr job to go play. It's music that needs to be heard.
Not that I can readily recall - just a year filled with tasks, a lot of part-time work, a new puppy, another house purchase with a huge remodel just getting underway - haven't really taken any vacation other than two days away to Chicago. Little time to reflect
I don't know that I have - which is its own interesting event to examine. Certainly the frustration in being unable to find such experiences in "my" synagogue helped to ease my internal conflict over dropping the significant financial commitment of membership dues.
I have tried to be more spiritual in general. I don't know that I had one experience that stands out. My trip to Israel was obviously very spiritual, but not in an obvious way. I just felt a connection to spirt there...
I went to quite a few folk music concerts in the past year only 2 of whom I knew beforehand. The other 2-3 artists-Heather Styka, Zoe Mulford, and The Young Novelists I had never seen/heard before. I went to each of their concerts having only listened to maybe 1-2 songs of theirs within a day or so of going to their concert. I am SO glad I went to each concert, because by the end of the night I was completely in awe. There were songs that each performer played that struck chords(pun intended) with me. I became a fan of each of theirs halfway thru the concert. I am so glad I went. Discovering new music is a 'spiritual' experience to me and it always has been. Its a special and unique connection between you and the performer(s). Its a "service" of sorts in their "house of worship"(whatever venue it might be). You connect, you get answers from a spirit other then yourself, and thus you are in some shape or form, transformed.
Being in Ireland this summer was amazing. Eric & I went to New Grange and Knowth. They were both such spiritual places. The fact that they were so methodically planned to align with the sun on the solstice is just amazing and humbling. It was inspiring. I also found the Janis figure on Loch Erne to be very spiritual and moving. It was just sitting in a cemetery off of a side road and yet it is thousands of years old and just amazing.
i have been volunteering at jefferson for almost a year now (more like 3/4 of a year) i was hesitant at first because i thought it would be weird/scary/gross/sad, but it has been great. while there are a lot of patients who dont care to hear music, the ones that do request a song are always so gracious, appreciative, and happy that i came to them. they almost all ask if i tried out for american idol (haha). it feels nice to touch the hearts of the patients who i play for and im so happy that i decided to give back to the community in this way
My whole life for the past year has been a spiritual experience as I prepare myself to apply to seminary. Opening up and accepting my spiritual yearnings, and not being ashamed about my desire to live a spiritual life has been very freeing for me.
Not sure. I try to ask for Guidance and Direction, then Listen. I can't think of any one instance that would define my life as a Spiritual Experience. I think every day is a Spiritual Experience, but at times my "business" prevents me from always being aware of these occurrence's.
I've started to spend more time with extended family and have begun to appreciate those relationships more. I've also been more in touch with my Jewish roots and have gone to a Seder and rosh hashanah dinner for the first time since being in college. It's been great to be back in that environment and I hope to join a temple and/or go to services more.
This summer, a woman stopped me on the bus and told me that she is very intuitive and believes I'm truly beautiful on inside and outside. She then asked if she could touch my shoulder. I agreed. She held her hand to the upper part of my arm for an extended period of time. "Nothing will ever hurt you again." She explained that her deceased daughter was now an angel that will constantly look over me the way she looks over her. While the story may seem crazy to some, that woman I met who was a neurosurgeon coming back from a dentist appointment in Beverly Hills uplifted my soul that had been drown by inexplicable sadness. Thank you for reviving my faith in spirituality.
This year I hiked the Wonderland Trail and felt like I began to believe in a power greater than myself. Through a series of events, I joined a 12-Step program which believes in a higher power. I also signed up to take the "Living in Judaism" class. I feel like I am beginning to believe in a power greater than myself which has been spiritual, but more than that, I believe I'm starting to trust that the universe has some magical power that I can't begin to understand. I'm starting to try to turn it over to the universe and live simply. This huge overhaul of the way I live myself has felt deeply spiritual at times.
Well, my mother was hospitalized in December, so I flew down to be with my father on Dec 25. I could not let him be alone. I ended up staying through to her passing in January. I spent many hours in the hospital praying for my parents. After my mother passed, I was given a sign from God that everything was good. I hold to that in my sorrowful times.
The last 12 months have shown several spiritual experiences in many different forms. The call of the temple gongs in Thailand in the early mornings and the aura of the monks was incredibly special, as was time spent at Wat Pha Lat. Back home I've founds loads of spiritual wisdom and food for thought in books and music, but more often than not my most beautiful spiritual experiences have been in nature where simple solitude fed my soul.
My great grandaughter, who is living with me, is an artist going to art school and her interpretation of nature puts me in another world.
E told us earlier this year that he thought he is an aethiest. He is a true scientist through and through and says that scientists believe things that can be proved. I told him I thought he was too young ( 11) to really make that choice because he hasn't had enough life experiences to witness miracles or G-d's presence. My husband suggested he look up the word Agnostic and then come back. He did and then declared that he thinks he is an agnostic. I thought this was a good choice exactly BECAUSE he is a scientist. Scientists keep open minds. They search for answers. At the beginning of the conversation I really felt punched in the gut. I do believe in G-d and feel Him, but because my relationship with G-d feels private I wonder if I have let my son down with teaching him how to have a relationship with G-d. Something I need to work on.
Crazy that this question came up this morning when last night I probably had the deepest, realest spiritual awaken that I've had in 15-20 years. God, angels, souls, afterlife... everything is coming together and revealing itself to me. All I can say is that I'm beyond thankful to be experiencing this realization so I live the best life I can on this planet, and in this body. I feel lucky and connected and I hope the feeling deepens.
YES! This has been a big year for spiritual growth. I have pretty much stopped going to church. This last year's Christmas Eve service was the worst service I have ever attended. This caused me to question my allegiance to an activity with so little spiritual value. I struggled early in the year with what this meant for me as a Christian. Could I still call myself a Christian? Going to the Wild Goose festival gave me the opportunity to see what kind of things DO nurture me spiritually. I also learned that there is still room for growth for me within the religious tradition of my birth, even if it is no longer the only source of wisdom that I tap. In addition, I read two books that gave me additional wisdom. "Denial of Death" pulled back the curtain on how many human behaviors (including religious ones) are motivated by the fear individuals have of becoming irrelevant after death. "When Jesus, Moses, Buddha and Mohammed Crossed the Road" opened up to me the truth that the world's greatest religious teachers have been "mishandled" by their followers. That there is no reason for animosity among these traditions except for the need of their followers for exclusive significance and power.
I have had many. discovering the dependable joy i get from visiting the dog park, especially with my camera. rosh hashana services at mishkan.
No. I even neglected LoA...... ALS destructed so much.... Just let everything in God's hands, my beautiful Dreams just go on when I sleep.
joining the CSL and their choir has uplifted me deeply, and returned confidence and courage to my every-day -self
I am impressed with the positive impact that global spiritual leaders such as the Dahli Lama and Pope Francis have had on the world this year. They are trying to wake people up to the differences in the haves and the have nots as well as trying to make people aware of humanities impact on climate change. It bodes well that in particular, the Pope can put some of the dogma aside and try to help with issues in concrete and meaningful ways even with people outside of his faith.
I am often struck by the splendor of nature, all of the colors in the world and the magnitude of the natural world. Between hiking the Grand Canyon, driving through Coconino National Forest, viewing the stars in Sedona and hiking close to home, I believe spending time in nature keeps me sane and grounded.
Learning to meditate in the few months after my father's death had a profound effect on me, even though I don't think of myself as meditative now. I don't dedicate time each day to mindfulness, yet find myself calmer in the face of challenges that might have freaked me out more in years past. I speak up in frustration less often than I used to (although I still do it too often) and let silence take the place of what would otherwise be angry noise. I hope this is making me a better mother, but I still have so far to go.
Oh yeah--studying Kant has made me see the limits of reason. What I can say I know and what I cannot say I know. And this has all culminated in a revisioning of faith. I was not consciously aware of it, but, I always had faith, and it was easy for me to have. I think that is because I had a resident assumption or expectation that one day my faith would be confirmed/rewarded. What I thought was true would reveal itself as true. Now i'm not so sure. Faith by its very nature requires that you don't know. And, maybe, there are some things you have to believe in, before you *can * know them. so it will be interesting to see how this plays out.
I was speechless when I got to the top of Yosemite's Glacier Point. I saw pictures of that landscape for years but the sheer majesty of the vista brought me to tears. The light, the rock, the atmosphere. It felt like god had a hand in the creation of that beautiful spot.
I am grateful for my son attending church with me. He comes not because he believes, but because he knows it makes me happy. He doesn't come every week, but when he is on the schedule to usher, or when we need him to help bring an elderly parishioner, our contribution of time to help out. And he does it joyfully. I attend, not out of a sense of duty, but because of the feeling of community it brings to my life. I have no idea if there is a god, or, if there is, if it takes any notice of us. But the people are good, the music is beautiful, the good we do for the less fortunate, is humbling to my existence. And I need that.
I had one night of blissful, anything is possible, it-doesn't-get-any-better-than-this moment. Early summer. I had worked really hard in the yard that day. Everything was cleaned up, I started a fire, grabbed a beer and sat out on the back swing listening to the pond bubble. I had this moment of peacefulness descend upon me. I was very aware of it, no negative tapes playing in my head. No sadness, no worry-- it was honestly, the best sensation I have experienced in 56 years. There was no melancholy for the first time in forever. Contentment. I even said out loud, "it just doesn't get better than this". I hoped it would happen again, but I was not able to recreate the situation that lead to these positive feelings. I had a brief glimpse of life with no depression. There was no "hand of God" moment; no religious awakening, just a sense of well-being and tranquility. I want more "it-doesn't-get-any-better-than-this" moments for the last half of my life. I know merely recreating the evening does not replicate the feeling. Maybe this is where meditation comes in-- my brain was in an altered meditative state. I need to learn more.
Throughout the year getting used to my new status has made me more sympathetic to people with disabilities and what they have to g0 through daily...poor public transportation, font that you can't see etc. I would say that driving from Boulder to Taos and visiting Pueblo Taos was really inspiring.
This is a year I felt the need to search deeper, s real soul search Always connected in nature and a meditator for many years which brings great satisfaction The dream workshop with Tess Castleman and Jenny Goedon in Decenber 2014 was the kickoff for is existential question
Can't think of any :-(.
I ended up attending XOXO fest this year (just a few days ago), and in the midst of the emotional seesaw that is that event, I found a moment of peace and understanding in the words of one speaker... "So the moment you are focusing on how to be respected by other people, is the moment no one will ever respect you." I have kept trying to figure out how to get people to like me. For my entire life. And while I have good moments of "fuck it, doing things my way", I've not been consistent about it because I kept having this subconscious desire to be liked by everyone. And that just is never going to work out for me or for anyone else. And it hit me, sitting in the dark, surrounded by strangers and new friends and at least one loved one, that it didn't matter if everyone likes me or respects me, because I'm the only one who can decide if that's valuable at all. And it was a perfect transcendent moment of understanding (accompanied by a lot of crying) that I'm still processing and probably will still be processing next year when a question like this pops up again.
Wes Ellsworth Funeral, the clouds took on the shape of waves. It was amazing, all 50 of us saw it before we paddled out to spread his ashes. It was almost supernatural, but it was within nature, so technically it was natural. I'd still call it a miracle.
I don't know about spiritual, but I faced my worst nightmare when we moved--Jonah and I got a stomach bug and Foster was out of town for work. I couldn't move, much less care for Jonah. Thank God Evin was around and came over--how many friends would willingly come to the rescue when you're covered in your own vomit? My biggest fear when we moved was being totally alone when something drastic happened, and what I found was that I could survive it. I've had to ask people for help way more than I've been comfortable with and way sooner in our relationships in a lot of ways. It definitely takes a village to keep a kid alive. I'm still working on getting more comfortable utilizing the village.
Right now, I don't feel like religion is a big part of my life right now. The major good experience I've had that I remember is going to bilingual mass on Christmas. Something about it just felt right. In a cultural sense, just going on with my Spanish career has made me a more open and objective person
Since leaving Michigan, I really haven't pursued much spiritual growth. I don't have a church, I've pretty much failed at meditation. And all my artistic endeavors are on hold while I pursue my career. Honestly, I miss it. It's nice to have something bigger than reality to work on and believe in. I think I need that to even me out since I'm always trying to climb some ladder. There's no top to the ladder, so I need to have something that keeps me enjoying the view along the way.
Yes! I've been searching craving to figure out my place. Growing Up in a religious culture was a big part of my life and who I am up until I started to question EvERYTHING. In my process I've learned to undo some of the "damage" or engrained thoughts and way of thinking, (still a work in progress). I've also been able to heal and accept my true self and learning ways to quiet the noise and just really truly hear what my higher self needs. After going through a moment of depression I snapped out of it with anger resentment frustration that led me to DO THiNGS, to get out, to try, to be proactive, Which then led me to the realization that life is really about our state of mind. I was coming from a place of anxiety, a place stuck on who I was doing what and when and how and how that was criticized or accepted by others... I had a break through watching a video on quantum physics that allowed me to realize I can create my own reality, because we all do. No matter how in sync we may feel with others we will never experience reality as they do. We o my have our own. We give power to what we allow. I know that I need to trust in life but I also have power in the choices I make, and how choose to feel about experiences. Creating peace, love, inspiration, creating and sharing moments is my goal now. To be healthy spiritually physically and mentally... Spirituality for me right now is trusting the bigger life force, and understanding and accepting that I am a small piece of that puzzle, but I can choose what role I will play..:being true to my light is Less words and more breathing, It is loving my self and embracing what growth may come, It is Love Breathing Life Just Being moment to moment Accepting Growing Loving Connecting Love.
Learning to ice climb, having fallen the year earlier while rock climbing. I came to see myself as being belayed by God/ the universe and have a new appreciate for how safe and cared-for I am. I can reach too far, I can be bold, I can make mistakes, but God/the universe has me tethered. I might be a bit bashed up by my errors, but it won't kill me.
Things that effected me deeply Gaining insight to what Lois did for my father through watching Judy and Randy's father via adult eyes. Gratitude Realizing time is the most important gift to give. The opening scene in Wild...such a cathartic scream, I cry thinking about it Seeing Helen Mirren in the queen, breath taking
There might be other things, if I think hard, but immediately to mind comes our trip to the southwest in June, which was jaw-droppingly awesome, in the true meaning of that word. I spent much of the time agape. I could not take enough pictures - around every corner was something else so beautiful, sometimes achingly so, that I was speechless.
Nothing particularly stands out but I recall several chesed experiences that were powerful, meaningful and when I think of them it brings a smile to my face. Those experiences impacted me just as much- if not more- than those we helped and served and that impacts me.
I'm learning/relearning to play bass. There is something magical when everyone is together on a song; a melding of people that is an extraordinary moment. I'm not a great musician, and I'll never be, but I enjoy those rare moments where something beyond myself happens and I only exist in that time as just a part of a whole. It's both thrilling and humbling. You realize you are not much of anything on your own, but together, well that's an entirely different story.
Studying abroad in Tel Aviv, despite it being a secular city, was a spiritual experience for me as it allowed me to speculate on my own spirituality without outside influences. I learned a lot about who I am as a Jew and what religion means to me
Once again, I find myself declaring my basically un-spiritual nature... But yes, seeing the Blue Mosque in Istanbul and strangely, the aquafers below Istanbul and being told that Ephesus used to lie right on the ocean, and the pizza in Rome (!), the arrabiatta sauce in Lucca, the entire Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, Iolanthe in its entirety, the themesong of Game of Thrones! (My endorphins go crazy.) Some books: Station Eleven, The Secret Place, John Irving, period, We are all Completely Beside Ourselves. The company of my brothers. Our three months in Holland felt so peaceful and renewing, in spite of the horrid flu. I realize I could live elsewhere very successfully and yes, I would miss friends, but they are so much more available than they were when I was younger. Not only do they travel more, but I can chat on FB or Skype. And then there was my physics reading research... what came before the big bang, the sheer enormity of the universe, the holographic theory of multiple universes, the description of folded dimensions. When I realize my brain isn't up to that kind of conceptualization there is definitely a spiritual aspect. Not sure it answers the questions, but it's what I've got.
I believe my most spiritual experience was my Outward Bound expedition. I learned the value of many things: group passion, pushing limits, quiet/solitude. I left with a better sense of self and significantly more confident. From managing group dynamics, to roughing it, to climbing to the top of chimney rock to the solo, it changed my life. The most poignant part was understanding the concept of belaying - and who I belay for in life and who belays for me. It also made me realize my role in this big broad world and how small it really is. It also has me questioning what I really need and feeling very optimistic about what I'm capable of.
This year has felt like a partial spiritual awakening - through various practices - meditation, a soul journey course, state experiences as part of aikido training - I have had more feelings of being a conduit - grounded and open to Spirit. The intensity of my devotional practices has intensified - a daily plea to relinquish the separateness I impose on myself, to surrender to what is already Here. It is the pulse of life right in front of me as I struggle to accept it, as well as my mother's life stage. I feel my resolve to doubt weakening, the little deaths along the way to waking up.
more in sync with g-d since doing the 12 steps in A.A.
Same question. Different year. Same answer. I have had no spiritual experiences, no matter how broadly that term is defined. The longer I live the more I believe we are simply a random grouping of cells that work together for a short period of time and when we die we simply cease to exist and the cells eventually become part of something else. No higher power. No meaning. No defining source. Therefore, nothing spiritual.
I found my voice. It's pretty uniquely mine, and I love it.
Spiritual experiences: - back packing in the Rockies - 5 months without sugar or junk food - Nature Vancouver connection - glaciers! - Dan Severance's ceramic classes @ PMAC
Giving birth to my daughter and co-sleeping with a newborn. I created a human and she came from me. she is now her own person doing her own things and having her own thoughts, likes, and dislikes. This is the closest I will ever come to God, the most spiritual possible experience. I experienced creation. I created a person in my image. And she is the cutest most endearing person that could be. I can't stop breathing her in.
Through music of various kinds, I do feel a bit more "spiritual". Truly, I am not sure exactly what that means "spiritual". What I may feel may not be what my neighbor feels.
I feel like my spirituality is becoming so ingrained in every day (or every week, more likely), that I can't point to one thing. I can't look at one anthem or service or sermon or hymn or sacrament as "particular." I can't look out to the ocean or a mountain or fjord or lake (big or small) and say that's the moment. There's no dinner or fellowship that's greater than the other. So no. There was no "particularly spiritual experience." There were thousands of small ones. Some too small to notice.
I'd have to say the most spiritual experience of my past year would be when I attended the Rutgers-Michigan blackout game last October. The energy of the student section made me feel alive and connected to everyone around and to something bigger than myself.
This past year, I got the opportunity to really see the magick in action. I got to share a very personal and magickal experience with someone I care about very much and it was a sort of 'awakening' for us both. We were able to tap into the spiritual, emotional and physical aspects of a 'joining,' and it has become a watershed moment for us.
I traveled alone to Istanbul. Traveling alone is always a spiritual experience, I think, but staying in the old city and sitting on the hotel roof in the evening, watching the sun set over the Aja Sofia and listening to the calls to prayer...that felt especially powerful.
Constantly Yoga Dreams Orb Lucid dreaming I sometimes forget but I always come back to me
Not really, at least not in ways that I can explain. I am moved by people's abilities to overcome adversity, but also with their grace in accepting hardships.
G-d has moved me across the country to shape me to servers and lead. I am profoundly grateful. He has never left me nor forsaken me. On the contrary He has empowered me to live more like a son and an heir. Egypt is being purged from me.
I have been in some quiet times with Heavenly Father. He's amazing! He has allowed me to experience real peace and hear His voice. Once there - changed forever! Like this morning I saw my pride, selfishness, and lies...and when He persuades of something, He does it without condemnation. And now I'm a free man! And happy man! :)
Between camp, Aspen, and PWild, I spent much of my summer outdoors, and I've begun to see my spirituality become more and more attached to my natural surroundings. My spirituality has absolutely evolved over the years -- it has become far less religious, and perhaps all less attached to art and culture (music for example) than before. Especially in leading my first trip this September, I've felt more spiritually compelled and moved by experiences of mindfulness, appreciation, and gratitude in nature. In particular, these spiritual moments of clear-headedness have come most prominently through beautiful places and the people with which I experience them. I feel like that's what I'm beginning to appreciate most of all.
Yes. Going to Hampton Bays while my cousin was dying and feeling the earth in that place support me. Realizing that it wasn't the house or the road or the address, but the soil of the place and my memories that seem older than I am, which doesn't seem possible, but there you go. And also, right now. I'm in Italy, and this is the cradle of civilization. I keep thinking about my father and Jenny here. They could have told me a lot. I think about antiquity. I went to a concentration camp transit camp and said Kaddish for the 11,000 people who were killed. I walked in places were renaissance artists hung out and their luminous paintings reached out for me.
Conversations with Divine Source. Knowing that the path I have chosen to walk can and does help others step into their fuller selves.
For some reason I was drawn to visit the grave of my grandmother. I think of her often but in all these years I've often passed by but never had the urge to visit. Something drew me there this year and I did go to her gravesite and it felt good.
Not sure how to answer this. Certainly, playing in an orchestra has been a delight, even with my insecurities about whether or not I was good enough (and would be kicked out.) Also, the reaction of my patients, some of whom cried when I told them I was leaving, was a surprise. I never thought I was that important to so many of them. It was also somewhat bothersome. It reminded me of the story, of all things, of Jesus feeling his power go out of him when someone touched his robe. And my coworkers gave me an expensive present (gift certificate to the SD Symphony). That was a surprise. I never thought they thought so highly of me.
I'm not a particularly spiritual person. So, no experiences to report so far this year.
On Rosh Hashanah (is that this year or last year? At any rate, a few days ago) I was meditating/praying on the idea that each of us has a place in our soul that is not yet wounded, and that this is what survives death. I thought about my grandfather, with whom I feel very connected, and others who have died. And suddenly I was overwhelmed with the awareness that all of the love from everyone who has ever lived still exists and is still available to me. All prayer and meditation, all of our labors and struggles, are really attempts to recover that place in us that is pure love and has not been wounded. This realization seemed so obvious to me and yet so new. I actually wonder when I read this answer next year whether I will still be feeling it, or whether I will have yet another realization that brings me further, or whether I'll think I was crazy when I wrote this!
In a way. I finally came to terms with my own awesomenss. I feel like my last relationship kept me down in a lot of ways. I was told negative things about myself, and came to believe them. When it ended, I started the process of trying to build myself back up. It started with going through the motions. Getting new clothes. Telling myself "eff this! you're too awesome to deal with this crap!" and things like that. At first during lulls and down moments, I would have to remind myself of those things. But after a whole year of repeating them and coming to terms with the way I look (a little smooshy maybe, but who cares. I think I'm womanly), and recognizing that it was MY opinion about all these things that matter, not my ex's, or coworkers' or future love interests' opinions, I find myself just accepting that I'm awesome. And I really feel that because of this, I've met someone who thinks I'm awesome. Someone who, when I say I'm going to take some "me time" doesn't say "cool, have fun," but says "hell yeah you are! you deserve it!"
I met the Devil and then I met God. And I had to choose. And I chose peace and faith, so I guess that means I'm on Team God. Team Devil plays a clever game...I'll give them that.
Spiritual experiences... Falling in love... The prayer that was the making of Why I Dance. Writing faithfully. The Artist's Way. Dancing my hopes and dreams.
Less spiritual experiences, and more like living spiritually. Walking to work, learning to notice my own resistances or yearnings as they happen, loving people even when I don't like them. Lots of little things feel like they add up to something more convicted - clearer in my own uncertainty maybe. It sounds unconvincing, but it feels deeper, better, more real.
To me life is a spiritual experience, what else is is? I have seen someone take their last breath. What is it that has left? They clearly are still there in body...what is gone is the un-explainable...the soul, the spirit, the breath. Once I had finally realized this, all actions become spiritual...even sharing this question with you. We are all interconnected. It is clear.
A few. A recent wedding between two friends was particularly beautiful and made me want to delve into my relationship with my Judaism more (as their commitment to their religion and each other was the topic of the many wonderful speeches), but it's too early to see how it's affected me. More secularly, driving alone through northern Michigan and much of Ontario was a somewhat spiritual experience, a time of reflect. I don't know if that's changed me much either yet (it was also within the last couple months) but it does make me want to seek out new experiences, nature, and independence.
A couple of days ago, Ruth and I went to see the Vaux swifts that come to a chimney near where we live. It was an amazing experience - so engrossing, and so full of the beauty of nature.
My daughter's Baby Naming Ceremony, hands-down, was one of the most incredibly spiritual moments for me this past year. Here is what I wrote after the occasion: "Yesterday morning turned out to be one of the more memorable moments of my life, unexpectedly. We planned to have Bailey's baby naming ceremony (where she would be given her Hebrew name) here in NY in the synagogue at which I grew up, Temple Beth-El. We didn’t make a big deal out of it – figured my parents would be the ones to attend the naming while we stayed at home caring for her. But I wanted to go. I didn’t expect to be called to the bimah, where I became a Bat Mitzvah almost 20 years ago. I stood next to Rabbi Blaine, who I have known since I was a little girl, as he offered blessings to my little girl and shared her name with our congregation. As he shared her beautiful name, Batya Ruchel in Hebrew and Bailey Rose in English, named after her Great Grandmothers Beverly and Ruth, I felt such joy and pride, and then the temple burst into the congratulatory “siman tov u mazel tov,” a song I have sung thousands of times before — but sung just for me — once at my wedding and once at my Bat Mitzvah, the major Jewish simchas of my life. I couldn’t help but cry the happiest tears I have felt since Bailey was born in my arms, singing one of the happiest songs I know and love."
I haven't had any single experience that has affected me, but I have had many that have cumulatively changed my life. My journey toward minimalism, the Brene Brown online course, couples therapy, intuitive eating, more time in nature, chancel choir, deliberately crafted vacations ... these are all making a difference in my spiritual identity.
Honestly, no. Life is full tilt and I have little time to relax. We just bought a new house and had a baby. Even the baby which you hope is spiritual was nut as I was in a work meeting at 10AM, rushed home to pick up Kristin, raced to the hospital and some how had the baby at 11:25AM. Hopefully next year I can breath.
My wife and I hiked to the top of Elk KNob in the mountains of North Carolina on New Year's Day this year. It was a cold and windy day and the wind-chill made for a very uncomfortable day, but it was a joy to spend the afternoon together and with a small group that gathered to participate in the New Year's Day climb. It helped to connect me back to the earth and the things that are most important -- my wife and family -- and to help me to be centered to start off the New Year.
I've had some epiphany's about my true self and how I can give more back to the community. These have lead me to get much more involved in the local community.
I was in Meron near Tzfat for Lag Baomer. Its a long time tradition that I heard about. Potentially 100,000 Jews go up this mountain every year to go visit the holy tomb. I saw soooo many Jews. It was unbelievable. They were singing and dancing. There was also tons of food to go around. It was all free. It was amazing seeing such a mix of people climbing this mountain. It was pact. Then I went to a tent that a friend of a friend has camped out in for the last few days. It was like young hippie rebellious orthodox kids smoking weed with candles and guitars everyone. It was kind of amazing. I felt so bonded to my community that night. It was a dream.
Yes I've had. No it has not.
Abe Meth was sitting in his usual seat, just across the aisle. 104 years old. A steadying force in the universe. And then, as he has done for the past 13 years we have been members at Beth El, he rose to walk to the pulpit, to take his place chanting Torah. Watching him, hearing him, feeling his presence, his voice, his chanting connecting all of us to our heritage and our history. Beautiful. Touching. Moving. A memory to last a life time. Why I love Beth El.
Honestly? Seeing the sunrises and sunsets over the river in our backyard makes me believe in God. The beauty washes every petty thought from my head and heart - I let it all go and surrender to the graceful, lovely sky above stretching forever and patient water below, reflecting shadows and glimpses of color.
I enjoy playing the flute and have come to appreciate a more modern style of music, like jazz, blues... Another thing is I am becoming better in being in the moment. I can enjoy a beautiful sky, the sunlight in the late afternoon, beauty in nature.
I can't think of anything particularly spiritual this year except for some beautiful sunrises and sunsets. I try to really appreciate those few moments when we have them and I'm in the moment.
Spirituality is a complicated thing in my world. Raised in an orthodox Jewish family but far from observant in my adult life, I struggle to find meaning in religion itself. I have sentimental attachment to rituals from childhood, and enjoy sharing some of those traditions with my children in a new way. And that is where my spirituality lies- with my family. With a thrown together Rosh Hashana dinner of left-over lentil soup, raisin challah and grape juice. My 13 year old brought out a box of ice breaker cards and we spent hours discussing what name we would call ourselves, impractical car we would like to own, and what other people think we complain about too much. Was it the traditional holiday experience of my childhood? Far from it, but it was perfect in its own right. Not a normal dinner, but there was lively conversation and I didn't have to tell any of the Kids to put away their cellphones even once!
I completed my dissertation, which took everything I had. It incorporated ideas I cherish, media I love, and memories that are sometimes painful. It was exhausting, and the three letters that follow my name now don't really seem to do it justice.
Nothing monumental. I feel more self aware than ever before. I have tapped into my power.
We have run a charity in Sri Lanka for 5 years... it was getting really hard to raise the money to sustain it and keep our heads above water... it was taking its toll on our family life with a lot of hours needed to work on it outside of a full time job. The, one morning we got news that not only had we got a grant from a funder who we knew was 'last chance saloon' but we had also been bought a school building unexpectedly. Just at the moment we needed the boost it came from nowhere... and I asked the donor why and he said... "have faith", then "now you must keep it open for us, and you will" It has changed my life. I have more time and the time I do spend on the charity is about moving it forward and developing some of my ideas... it is creative and fun again and so it energises me most of the time ;)
I have spirtual experiences daily. A significant one that stands out is the following; my yoga teacher introducing me to Kirtan Yoga. Back story is i do yoga alone in my house with Eddie. I've been doing it for about 6 years now. He invited me to go to a class in Santa Monica about 4 or 5 months ago. on the face of it - everything about the class i would normally despise. mats inches apart from each other, classic Yoga girls evoking that Yoga chi that irritates me, super hot and sweaty, singing Hare Krishna chants... And the amazing insane thing is that I LOVE IT!!! I love the chanting, I love the sweating, I love the hugging and holding hands, But mostly i love the state of mind that the experience puts me in. I leave feeling so blessed and alive that i am in this world. JAI MA!!!
Every year, I find myself feeling more and more connected to the human race. When I was younger, I felt so incompetent and undeserving. As I've gotten older, I've embraced the idea of the beauty of imperfection. Perfection is no longer a goal of mine and I am coming to really, truly understand deep down that I don't need to be perfect, or even close to it, to still have value as a human being. My mom struggled so much with mental health issues and her own sense of worthiness or rather, feeling unworthy). She passed within the past few years and I am coming to terms with the idea that even if I don't measure up to certain ideals and goals, I am still part of the messy mix that makes up humanity. I can appreciate her for who she was and the wonderful, lofty goals she instilled in me, while still rejecting the self-hate she clung to and shared within our immediate family. Civilizations grow and thrive, not because of those few super humans, but because of all humans, in all of our messy, imperfect attempts at things. It's not only the best things that contribute to who we are, individually and as a whole, but everything we do. And in order to do this, I have to practice non-attachment to past mistakes and to future possibilities, and do what I can, today, and be okay with that.
My most spiritual events last year were anytime I was able to sit in front of a crucifix, without interruption.
Yes. Engaged in hours-long prayers every week, particularly this one, has affected me deeply. I've become far more patient, as well as more careful with my words, as a result.
I thought I was feeling great at Wooddale, but I realized that I much more care about people than churches or organizations as a whole. They decided to announce in front of the whole church that they didn't agree with the Supreme Court's decision to legalize gay marriage and that they still believed in the "biblical definition of marriage", so I decided I didn't agree with their ignorant, hate-filled faces and left.
I have worked hard this year to really BE PRESENT and to try to stay focused on what is in front of me - good or bad. I'm finding when I do that I get much more joy out of everyday things- snuggling with a dog, laying in a hammock reading a book, a good song on the radio. I have also tried to make fitness a priority mainly swimming. I find that a couple of hours in the pool clears my head and calms in an important way.
Kayla's Memorial Service was very spiritual. The fact that my brother missed the gas meter and the tree was spiritual. However, the most profound spiritual experiences have been with friend. Those to friends, their support and my ability to reach out and support them have been very spiritual. Gratitude and Grace have abounded in numerous of these moments of sharing. What a gift!
I haven't actually thought of it this way but my family has embraced rainbows as signs of my late partner who died out of the blue when our kids were very young.
In the past week, I've cracked TWO double yolk eggs. I'd never in my life cracked a double yolk egg, and now in this past week (the most important week in the Jewish calendar), I've cracked two. I wouldn't consider myself religious or superstitious, BUT I've decided to interpret this as a positive omen of a bountiful, blessed, and fruitful (hopefully with children!) year to come.
Over the past year I wrote my novel. In the process, I would enter the mindset of each character, see through his/her eyes, and walk through the world as that character. It was a very trying experience, taking me to levels of empathy and emotional turmoil that sometimes left me staggering. I would need to take breaks to look out the window to reassure myself that the sun still shone, that the world was still good. I felt guilty for what I put my characters through, though I ruthlessly continued to subject them to torture. The whole experience was incredible, and has helped not only my writing, but also my ability to view the world and people around me, taking me out of myself with ease.
I walk a neighbor's pitbull mastiff mix. Before I started walking him, this poor handsome boy lived behind a fence and spent most of his time alone. I feel like I have given him a richer life and a bit of happiness. In return, time spent with Diesel makes me feel grounded, peaceful, and content. I feel like we two creatures share a spiritual bond.
Yes. Marrying after being widowed and the soaring spiritual elevation of loving fully, and being loved back. This is especially powerful to me because I never thought I'd experience it again. I have a new soulmate, and that is a spiritual experience every day when I see him and every night when we cuddle up together. Being with my father when he died, and with my sister through this process. Nothing clarifies life more than seeing it end. Sharing this with my sister has brought us very close. Going through this process with 10Q during the high holy days is helping me focus on my spiritual nature. I feel centered and more alive these past few days.
With fear and trembling, I admit that this year has been radically spiritual. The Lord continues to call me out and with each step I take, he draws me further. I find myself considering the prospect of ministry in ways I have never thought possible. Most significant is the deeper understanding of my lack, continually met by his abundance. His love is truly overwhelming! It brings me such joy to see him at work in my life and so many of those around me!!
I think the best spiritual experience was the week I spent in prayer gathering with other believers at 6 am at Calvary. The act of getting up and going to the sanctuary was such a commitment and I was willing to continue doing it but it was only for one week. I have such a hard time doing it independently at home with such determination at a specific time and place. We prayed for close to an hour and I had no problems identifying things to pray for. I need to try to identify a place and time and try to commit to it like that again.
Becoming a daily exerciser has been a spiritual experience for me over the past year; it involved shifting my point of view and being intentional about my daily practice. In the process of learning to work out daily, I learned to love myself, listen to my body, and challenge myself, which has been beautiful, life-giving, and deeply affirming.
i was interested in finding out about the artist Banksy and finally watched the feature about his 30-day art happening in new york. incredible creativity and works, but left me to wonder, is public art for the people or is public graffiti a property crime? i think if i owned a large art center with outdoor spaces, i'd set aside square footage for street art. on the other hand, i'd be cheesed off if someone tagged my private property.
Learning about Lindsey Miller's death was really impactful. I don't know if it can be classified as spiritual, but in a way, it is. I felt empathetic toward a person who passed away whom I barely knew. She came up in my thoughts during yoga (cliche as it sounds) one night, forcing me to face up to it in the silence and darkness of the moment. I also learned about the Hawaiian creation story about the bowl of light. That everyone is born with a bowl of light, and every time you do something bad, a stone gets put in your bowl adding darkness. But at any moment, you can dump out the stones and start new. Yom Kippur is like that.
I'm getting more and more okay with my lack of a need for spirituality in the traditional sense. That said, I have experienced more moments of bliss, of peacefulness, of sheer joy and awe in the past year, and I think those feelings can be considered "spiritual experiences." The things that affect me in this way are seeing the eagle soar over the lake, catching an amazing sunset and afterglow, seeing falling stars or the northern lights or a winter sunrise. I saw a waterspout for the first time this year. Things that have nothing to do with me, but I am lucky enough to witness. These things are inspiring and make me feel both small and as big as the universe.
Both religiously and secularly. From a religious view, I was able to go to the mikvah for the first time! Secularly, I have the desire to learn to paint and wish to do spiritual paintings!
I spent a day in silent mindful retreat last November . The peace, calm and awareness of senses helped me ground myself. I try to hold mindfulness close to me in my life now it's a big part of keeping me healthy.
The sense that my late husband was with me in a few months after his death.
I attended the challah baking at the Shabbat project it was an amazing feeling of community belonging and to bake the challah inspired my soul
I have a very ambivalent understanding of spirituality. On the one hand, it reeks of organized religion, which is off-putting and often makes me shutdown (especially when someone else starts talking about G-d and there being a Bigger Picture). On the other hand, I sometimes get the feeling, in mundane ways, that I'm connected to a larger ecosystem of love, ideas and suffering. When I catch someone's eye and we're on the same page. When I think of a friend who texts me immediately. When I put something out there, into the world, and I'm given so much back... Is that spiritual? Or just gratitude? Can gratitude be my spirituality?
I have had several. Most of them were private moments when I was all alone--feeling blue and down and unable to cope with something, or how I was feeling. I'd feel helpless and abandoned. With time I would suddenly realize that what was happening in my life was for my benefit--it was exactly what I had asked for and been needing. And suddenly my focus would shift and I would realize how prepared for this moment I was. How I had read all the right things and talked to all the right people and had everything I needed to figure it out. I felt so loved every single time. I felt so blessed that my heavenly father knows exactly how I will be feeling and sets my life up IN ADVANCE for me to be prepared for the challenges that I will face. I know he has a plan for me, and you, and everyone who wants to work with him. Even if we might not always see it that way, that is the way it is.
The hyper-awareness that happens when you lose someone close has resulted in a greater appreciation for my spiritual self and the way in which belief, arts, friendships continue to nurture me. I am grateful for all I have, even while I mourn those I've lost. That in itself has been a spiritual experience.
This year, to commemorate 9/11, I sat on a San Francisco beach on September 11 with the 860-page "Here is New York: A Democracy of Photographs" and looked at every single heartbreaking image. The book is as heavy as a cinder block, physically and emotionally, and though it has been on my shelf since it was published in 2002, I never took the time to look at it beyond the first few pages, and a gruesome, frightful skim. I lugged the weighty book all the way to the water's edge and here it was, resting in my lap. I pulled it out of the slipcover and started turning the pages in a methodical rhythm, starting from back to front for some odd reason. I saw images of the World Trade Center before, during and after its collapse. Images of people running, crying, helping, jumping, staring up with mouths aghast. Images of signs and graffiti representing every possible political and spiritual reaction to the destruction. Images of streets, skies, candles, missing persons notices, clouds, dawns, skylines, shoes, windows, parks, rooftops, airplanes. Images shot by professional photographers as well as amateurs with cell phones. Images presented in a donated storefront near Ground Zero within days of the attack and sold to raise money for children of victims. Images. Powerful images. Hundreds of powerful images. For three hours, with the sun slowly arching above me in a clear blue sky, I poured over "Here is New York". Delicate sand, like Lower Manhattan ash, drifted into book binding and page gutters. I remembered Pema Chodron's instruction to transform personal suffering by connecting what we feel to the pain that others feel, too. She writes, "...when we let our hearts break, we discover our kinship with all beings." I felt my broken heart open and soften and fill with compassion. I felt my own grief merge with the grief of those who were captured in the photographs before my eyes. I prayed for victims, many whose bodies were turned to falling ash, for their shocked and devastated families, and for rescue workers who acted with more courage than I could ever fathom. And I thanked the thousands of eyes whose viewpoints were recorded on the tome's dense pages. The story of the grassroots outpouring of photographs and donations was quickly picked up by mainstream media and soon became known throughout the world as "Here is New York". Nearly a million dollars was raised and distributed. It's a story created by thousands of shooters, hundreds of volunteers, a handful of brilliant organizers, and a world hungry to help. This project continues to be a solid testament, not only to the history of our country, but to good will that pours down like a waterfall of love and generosity when a tragedy of this proportion befalls a city and a nation. I shook the sand off the book as best I could, wedged it back into the slipcover, and released its weight into my beach bag. Leaning back in the chair, I closed my eyes and sighed. Oh life! Oh sorrow! Oh death! Oh joy! May we come together and create meaning out of madness. May we help one another always. May we live to make a difference. May we serve the greater good. Amen.
OH, absolutely! I feel like I'm growing by leaps and bounds, every year, and so I'm getting a feeling that this is only the tip of the iceberg for me. I've been reading the bible more often, taking out quiet times for prayer and reflection, learning to meditate. Trying to listen more to my intuition. Praying and more praying. The way that I pray is that I take the time out to be grateful for what I have and experience here, and say Thanks. I learned about Abraham Hicks this year, and have been fascinated with the concepts that I've learned from listening to seminars on YouTube.
Being with my dad when he died was kind of spiritual. It was awful but also felt much larger than me or my family. Also starting group therapy has been kind of spiritual. Connecting with people on a deep level and recognizing that all people deal with struggles and have similar emotions has been really helpful for me and made me feel less lonely.
Yes. The lead-up to my recent relationship break-up and the resulting onslaught of debilitating anxiety that I experienced, led me to seek out practical information and guidance on mindfulness to help calm my nerves. Through the practice of conscious breathing, journaling, painting, and introspection (combined with the time of year, which coincided with high holy days), I'm gaining more understanding of my emotions, learning how to integrate them and not feel dominated by them. I'm also learning how to hold space for myself and all my conflicting feelings, as well for my ex, who I'm most upset with right now: tender, compassionate, loving and gentle feelings for him, in addition to the anger, hurt, resentment, mistrust and fear toward him.
Being in Israel and at the Kotel for Havdallah
Probably the most wopuld have been Milford and Doubtful Sounds (in the far south of New Zealand) where I forgot about God; being overwhelmed by Creation
In reality I feel a pulling away from organized Christianity as I can not reconcile the love I have for my gay brothers and sisters who wish to marry and the Christian stand point completely opposed to that. Additionally, I don't understand how people of Faith reconcile the cruelty perpetrated by man upon animals in the form of consuming them, using them for entertainment and/or other forms of exploitation. My move to no dairy, eggs, cheese was because of the compassion I feel for my fellow travelers upon this Earth. I feel a deep spiritual void while at services... resentment of the all consuming selfishness of some people.
Singing Halleluyah by myself in the grass under a broiling Missouri sun and wondering why I talk to G-d so much, when I see a ladybug. It crawls up and down a single blade of grass again and again. The ladybug tells me that G-d talks back.
Singing shabbat with rabbi Ira on shabbat. Singing avinu malkenu in 2 voices. Watching ballet by sidi Larbi cherkaoui. Watching nature in ireland
I hate this question and wish it would stop coming up! I never looked back to see if I am answering the same 10 questions every year. Maybe I should.
Yes, I found myself back in shul. On purpose. With intention. Feeling so blessed!
I'm not sure I fully understand the question. On one hand I don't remember any religious spiritual experience from my whole life. On the other hand, do we count experiencing forms of art as an artistic spiritual experience? If yes, I had fortune to see or hear or feel quite some of those: the Invisible Exhibition in Budapest, the Eiffel tower, some cool galleries and buildings in Paris, the mountains of Livigno and Innsbruck, the Wörthersee, among others. I reached the limits of my endurance when ski touring 1000 meters of height in Livigno. I reached the limits of my managerial abilities during Formula Student Hungary. I'm learning piano since January and have been expanding my knowledge and skills on it ever since. I don't know what to do with my life, how to enjoy it. Actually I know I can do whatever I want, but what matters? Will anything matter on my deathbed? Do only the things I and the world remember? Or can I just simply enjoy the days? These require a radically different strategy, which I don't have yet. As of now, I think the main purpose of my life to be happy so that my spouse and kids will also be happy. Be knowledgeable so that I can teach my kids many things.
Because I was the synagogue president, and all that goes along with that, it was much more difficult than usual for me to have spiritual experiences. I spent much more energy on thinking about and juggling synagogue business, leaving less time to slow down and appreciate what was around me. This past year, I tended to have spiritual experiences by being out in nature rather than by being at the synagogue or synagogue functions.
I went to the Galapagos Islands with Julia in July! Exploring this new culture was amazing. One night that stuck out to both of us in particular was a Friday night in Puerto Vallarta, Santa Cruz (the main island). After dinner we were walking to our hotel and walked through the town's center to find hundreds of kids playing in the square. We sat there for an hour just watching these kids interact with one another, and their parents. There were kids playing soccer, a baby learning to walk, little boys showing off on their bikes, and boys racing up the side of skateboard ramp. It's pretty wonderful that kids playing is universal, regardless of wealth level. It was awesome just to people watch these kids with no cares in the world.
I have learned a bit about spirituality through mindful self-compassion that I learned this summer. Other than that, I wouldn't say I had anything particularly spiritual happen this year. I wish I could say I did! I feel like I should.
I really tried to work on my spiritual self this year which has led me to read, do, and listen to so many things: The Big Life, paraliminals, the Sedona Method, Osho, David Palmer, going to mass, The Desire Map, Dr. Anu, acupuncture, meditation, The Prophet, etc, etc, etc - Sometimes my search for the spiritual comes from my need for control and my want to figure it all out. It can hurt my head sometimes! The spiritual journey I have put myself on has almost been to "fix" myself. As I move further into it, I feel like there is actually less to fix. All of the lessons are within me. It's been more of a lesson to learn to find the peace.
I'm not a spiritual person, so usually travel is my "spirituality." Recently I went to Mexico and climbed a Mayan pyramid for the first time. Not only was it incredibly scary it was also an amazing experience. After the perilous climb I was surprised at how high up we actually were - and how deep in the jungle. The view was amazing but I was in awe of the people who built the massive temple so long ago. It's amazing what people can accomplish.
Just a few days ago I celebrated 29 years of sobriety in Alcoholics Anonymous. My spiritual experience on that day was a profound gratitude and humility for the GIFT that was given to me that I did nothing to deserve. In the past, I have felt excited, proud, exhilarated, but this year was different. But good.
No. If anything my experience of pregnancy and my brother's cancer diagnosis has rooted me more firmly in the world of science and reason. While pregnancy is amazing, it's a biological process and not a well evolved one at that. And what kind of God allows people to get cancer. Especially young otherwise healthy people? If we thank anyone for healing it should be the tireless Drs and nurses and caregivers. And the kindness of friends and family who have rallied around to support.
I did not experience anything particularly spiritual this year, but being present at (and sometimes part of) my Jewish friends' religious and cultural events over the last year has been very special and enjoyable and been a new way to connect with my friends and learn about their community.
Going on my year 10 Jewish study camp has changed my perspective on so many things as well as opened my eyes to my Judaism.
davening at raz's minyan in jerusalem, 5775 r"h and y"k, was the most moving and memorable spiritual experience i had over last year. the kavannah in the room is off the charts. singing, dancing, palpable emotions, clapping, just got better as services continued all day. the room buzzed with energy. i'm not sure i will ever experience anything like this again, and i long to return. it certainly helped me realize how davening can be a physical and emotional activity.
Back to not much going on. Some great music and books but nothing that has been particularly spiritual ...To a certain extent what has been good is that it has been calm and placed and boring and that is what I have wanted to a certain extent
I received a very difficult medical diagnosis this year. This has caused a lot of anger spiritually. I am angry with God. Why me? I have tried to live a righteous life. I continue to think and pray on it, but I still have so much anger.
Talia's wedding in Israel, the most amazing and spiritual experience. Mostly orthodox from Judea and Samaria, like going back in time 2000 years. Every day with Jared is spiritual, how we've been given strength to care for him and his courage to keep on living is amazing. Hopefully he'll start sleeping again with his broken arm. God love him.
Understanding loss is a spiritual experience, since it causes one to reach into the great abyss which lies outside of that which we can explain, and makes us try and dredge up answers from those dark corners of our imagination. Coming to terms with what has gone is also a process of coming to terms with what remains. Learning to live with what is, and who we are in this new reality.
My wife and I went on a youth trek on the Mormon Trail following the footsteps of the early pioneers of the Willy and Martin Handcart Companies across Wyoming. We pulled handcarts over the same trails these pioneers walked. The most spiritual part for me was observing the effect it had on the youth as they went through this experience. This event was a lot of work and time expended by a large number of people but it was such a spiritual experience that it will be remembered for lifetimes by many of those who participated.
When I got to annual conference and did not exist--as a clergy person--I was devastated. Had I just been briefed in advance. I doubt I will go to retreat this year. I feel less a part of the "Team." I still enjoy my walk of faith, but it has taken a turn.
I always have a spiritual experience when I am hiking. Mother Nature is awe inspiring and takes me to an introspective place. I find it calming.
Making music in church. There are numerous occasions where singing or ringing, we attain a level of beauty, precision, and unity that transcends even the notes on paper. The best was singing The Requiem by Cliff Hardin, music director at River Road UU Church. It takes one through so many aspects of dying and death--anger, depression, acceptance--and the human reactions to it (the person dying, his/her family/friends/sign.other). The lyrics are powerful--some beautiful and lyrical, some pounding and traumatic. There are solos, an instrumental, and marvelous choral pieces. It was transformative. When we sang it at Cedarlane, the congregation, the musicians, and the singers were so unified and in sync. There were tears, there were grins... It was a peak and sublime experience. Music and transport me to a divine place. If I were a theist, I would say that we touched a part of God, but being an agnostic, that doesn't work. Another spiritual experience was watching some meditative video pieces at the Hirshhorn Gallery of Art with my daughter, Gannett. They were so calming, spiritual in a gentle, flowing way. They felt timeless and full of thought, many thoughts. I came out of them renewed and refreshed.
Nothing comes to mind, other than enjoying some really lovely sunsets in Mexico (and surprisingly, at home.)
My mother died of cancer when I was a child. Last year, on Yom Kippur, I was in Tzfat, attending a Kol Nidre service. At one point in the service, a woman stood up and announced that for the blessing that traditionally parents give to their children, since many of the members have lost their parents, she would like us all to put our hands on the head of a stranger and recite for them the blessing. The woman who I happened to be sitting next to was completely bald. The link between this woman's bald head and my mother's last months of her cancer, coupled with the fact she was giving me the blessing of a parent to a child, made me break down into tears. I'm not usually a religious person but in that moment, on the holiest day of the year, I did feel a deep spiritual emotion.
Yes, I matured enough to know I dont have to stop being the nest person I can be just because things dont go my way. I also theorized that the devil is not real thing outside of us, but actually a manifestation of our evil actions used as a scapegoat to avoid accepting blame for our own self doings. In conclusion, I think it would be interesting that if after St. Peter lets us into the pearly gates, we see Lucifer chatting with GOD and realize we made up this story to avoid taking blame for our actions. We manifested his story to have a scapegoat when in reality, we should have been looking introspectively rather than looking for somewhere to point the finger.
living in the mountains and soaking up the beauty
Because I’ve had an on-going long-term spiritual practice—meditation/prayer/sacred readings/daily poem writing for decades I feel that each year I have many brief moments of I’m not sure what to call them—true presence? sweet timeless ecstasy? breath-taking awe/gratitude/fullness of awareness. They come and they go and nourish me always. As a gardener I provide for myself, my husband who is a photographer, and anyone who visits—a park which to me feels like the Garden of Eden, and I am constantly grateful and blessed by the chance to care for these 3 acres of earth and the many beautiful flowering plants, bushes and trees that we have planted in the earth. And as a wife/lover/mother/grandmother/friend I have had the great good fortune to be blessed again and again with the loving presence of all the people who matter most to me. Last year I attended the first High Holy Day services of my life, and have since joined the synagogue where I have also gone for Torah study for the last year and a half. This year’s Rosh Hashanah services and last, and the few other services I’ve attended in between have brought a new breadth to my spiritual life, and added new wants as well. I yearn to learn Hebrew well enough to read Torah and the siddur, and I want to learn to sing the prayers the way they are sung by my congregation.
Traveling to Vietnam, Cambodia, and Paris
There was a part of our Mt. Rainier hike, just before we reached Sunrise, that struck me as being a "thin place". I felt very close to God and all things there. The power of it almost took my breathe away. I hope to continue to meditate, pray and seek to find that closeness and peace everywhere.
I feel every time I see the beautiful sky, grass, trees and commune with nature, this feels spiritual. When my daughter went to MDA and was told she was sicker and we thought she was unable to get the job in Boston, we were so sad. Then, she called MDA and her doctor said it was a mistake and she could take the job- that felt somewhat spiritual in the sense that we didn't want her to go but when she couldn't we were even sadder. Was this heavenly intervention to show us she should go? When I stop to thank G-d, I feel close and this is spiritual. I also feel G-d guides me. When I interviewed for the pain management position, I felt the director was waffling until I said it would be harder to fill this position than my previous position ( which I had at the time). That retort, I feel, pushed me into getting the job. Why did I say that? Did that idea come from G-d? I do not believe in predestination or destiny or fate but maybe G-d helps us when he/she can? If this is true, this is the ultimate spiritual experience- right?
I think Jewish camp is my religion. Is that too cheesy? It feels true. I find spirituality when I'm in a community of people who find spirituality important. I find it in outdoor sanctuaries and songs and hand movements and kids who smile real big when they get to say their favorite prayer. I was at a camp this summer where I felt that more then ever. I also read Torah there for the very first time. It helped me feel more connected and more whole but also smaller-- like i'm a tiny piece of something much bigger, and I loved that.
I've come to realize that we're all connected, individuals all part of a bigger entity, like cells in a body. The energy of everything is everywhere, and feelings and thoughts are energy too! We can actively change ourselves by what we think, and by changing ourselves we change the energy surrounding us, thus also affecting life around us. When we realize that you and me are one, we will want to care for each other like we would care for ourselves.
Negative. I am starting to feel like I will never find a religion. Or at least not until I am much older. Sometimes I get these very strong feelings of being so far above all the material things in the world and that I love everything and all my worries and doubts do not matter. But only occasionally do I get that feeling with such intensity. Inner peace I believe is what that's called. I may be Buddhist, deep down, I don't know. It's gonna take some years and year of experience and struggle to get me to realize my spiritual path. I know there is a God. I just don't know yet how much of an influence he has on us. I think he's more laid back than some people think.
Many! Everyday I am reminded how much love the Universe has for me. Things as silly as great parking spots, reconnecting with people, even Charley moving home. It's all good.
Going to the grief workshop with Sobonfu was a spiritual experience. Being in the presence of such a wise and spiritually connected woman was amazing. Seeing the community that was created, interacting with people with such depth and open heartedness, feeling deep grief with others who helped hold it--it was all much more than I had anticipated. We built altars, we cried and pounded the floor, we danced and sang, we held one another and we were a community. I would never have expected that I could get to such deep places in such a short time.
The only thing that comes to mind is my feeling of awe and sadness at the sight of the autumn foliage in Alaska. The leaves change very quickly, almost all at once, to a uniformly gold color. It's indescribably beautiful. Driving down the road, seeing the hills patchworked with gold deciduous and evergreens, I kept wishing that I could hold onto it somehow. Sometimes I took pictures, but they never captured what I was seeing. Most of the time I was driving so I couldn't take a picture anyway, but I desperately wanted to somehow imprint what I was seeing on my brain, so that I could look at it later. It went by too fast while I was driving and the season goes by quickly. Already the leaves are fallen from the trees. This was something beautiful that I couldn't hold onto and would never see again. "Márgarét, áre you gríeving/ Over Goldengrove unleaving?/...Nor mouth had, no nor mind, expressed/ What heart heard of, ghost guessed:/ It ís the blight man was born for,/ It is Margaret you mourn for." - Gerard Manley Hopkins
I have had occasion to feel deeply connected to friends and loved ones and marveled at the beauty I find in the world. No burning bushes, dammit.
In terms of positive experiences, the moment I saw a positive on the pregnancy test... Even though it ended in loss, it was a heart and soul moment. In terms of negative experiences, the whole process of losing Sebby and having lost the baby we're both soul-shattering experiences.
I have explored my more intuitive side. Explored tools of intuition like the Tarot. I have felt withdrawn from traditional religious practice and am just now reminded to do everything as into God. I crave the spiritual to give life more meaning
Definitely. This past year was the year of my conversion process, and it was a year of powerful spiritual experiences. I was exposed to so many musical, artistic and literary works that all were very moving. Watching "Woman in Gold" during Selichot study session was just one of many.
I feel that beginning an Intro to Judaism class with my partner was deeply spiritual. While most of the class consisted of Non-Jewish partners, I felt a renewed sense about my love for this academic, questioning, digging, open-minded, eclectic, inclusive religion. I also got to play a Fury from Greek mythology, and I sort found my own underworld of embodying rage and grief and isntinct all while remaining empathetic.
I asked Mom several times over the years, "What time of the day was I born?" She could never recall. Too many babies, she said. Even so, I like to think it was in the middle of the night because that time of the day, when everything is asleep or whispering along in the darkness, is sacred to me. When I die, if it won't cause too much trouble to those who love me, I'd like it to be around 3 in the morning. I want to greet what's coming when I'm at my most open and aware. From my journal, March 14, 2015: "At this time of the morning, before light gathers up the night and slips it into woven baskets to be stored away, I am happy to sit in the dark and listen to the rain. The sound is amplified by the darkness. It shouts. It gurgles in the gutters. It crackles across the skylights in the same way embers pop above a campfire in summer. If you open yourself wide to it, you can hear every Season in it. "I am sitting here, breathing deeply, making wishes on these liquid, falling stars. I have a wish for each of you and each one is as bright as a candle flame. How lucky am I, to be here, in the dark, with the rain, thinking of you? How bright this alter is, covered in its black velvet night, with so many brilliant, little lights."
On March 8th, I felt my mother's last breath. My hand was on her chest as the last of her life slipped out. In the moment, I had to comfort my bereft father who had no warning this was coming. His anchor to this world, his partner, the mother of his children, his family slipped away seemingly inexplicably. I have never witnessed such profound grief. At the exact moment of my mother's death, I felt extraordinarily blessed to be with her. It felt like a deeply intimate and spiritual moment- the last breath of a person. One second alive, the next, not. I was shocked at how quickly her hands became cold. I was split in half as I enfolded my father to comfort and protect and reassure him. I had never felt such gratitude for her - of course, a moment too late.
So much actually... in October, when I was paid out from the state for my time, I cried as I made that last call, paying off that last overdue bill, it was a beautiful experience. Staying clean throughout rough patches, when people I love didn't, the Diamond retreat, Passover at Dale's house, all of the step work that I've done, spending time with family, not just my parents, but Nelda and Carolyn too. Yeah, it's been a God filled year for sure, and in the end, it always is, I just have to look for it.
Lately I've been taking a few minutes each morning to lay in bed quietly and feel calm- I don't think about what I have to do that day, I don't think about what happened yesterday or what could happen tomorrow. I just lay there comfortably and exist. In my head is white noise and my heart beats slowly and steadily. My mind is clear and all is black- I wish I had done this years ago- it's a great way to start the morning.
I feel the most spiritual at camp. While Shabbat at the mikdash is special, that is not when I feel most spiritual. I connect to the dancing our community does on Friday night. We pray with our feet. I believe in the community Judaism builds and relies upon, and dancing allows me to be part of this community. I believe in Jewish summer camp because we have spiritual experiences at any moment of any day. This year I fell in love with camp.
A few weeks ago, I was at fall boards. It was an amazing weekend, and I got to meet so many incredible people. After allocations (#stripforsato), we all decided to go swimming in the pool. That meant jumping into the pool in a t-shirt and nike shorts, since I didn't bring a bathing suit. We were all splashing around having fun, and then someone began to sing. We all came together and formed a big circle and began a giant ruach and slowach session. It was incredible. We could feel the pool shaking beneath us, and everyone else at the pool left. Every time we got to a part where we would clap our hands, we would slap the water instead. When we did Dodi Li, underwater version was actually underwater, and during Eli Eli, we could feel the rush of the water. We did song after song after song. At 11:00, when the pool closed, the security guards came to kick us out. But then staff (mostly Adam Rosen) made them wait while we did one last thing. We all got back in the circle, wrapped our arms around each other, and sang B'shem Hashem. We did it twice, and when we were done, we said the Shema. The absolute power of this moment, in the middle of a hotel pool in New Jersey, is something that I hope to never forget.
No. I might as well have spent the year in a coma. And that's kind of how I feel -- like I've been in a coma.
I experience moments that last with like they were spiritual. It is, like, hmmm, when I'm on vacation - the whole thing can be going great and good - but then there would be five seconds where I'm standing on a rooftop with the sun in my eyes, shades on, music playing, glass of something in my hands, laughing. That is my spiritual moment. I need more of them.
A friend of mine didn't know she was pregnant, and delivered a baby boy at home at only 24 weeks. The baby changed their lives in the ten days he lived. I sang at his memorial service, and I got my strength to do so from watching his Mom. She had so much strength, and so much faith. That little guy has no idea how much of an impact he had in such a short time here on Earth.
homebirthed my third child, our first son. it was one of the easiest things i've ever done
Not really unfortunately. It just wasn't a priority.
No I haven't, but I have had spiritual experiences by proxy. My dear psychic friend has been so helpful in getting me through a terrifically difficult loss. She tells me to trust in the universe and I am really trying. I guess it was an artistically spiritual experience to be a part of my son's first public performance pieces as a drag queen and to have his/her peers tell me how he/she was speaking for them. I am grateful for that.
I think I still continue to explore search and wonder about spirituality. I have been seeking answers that make sense to me or sit right with my being for a few years now. The female as spirit is important to me - the strength, beauty, knowledge and empathy of a female energy makes me feel safe - Last year I was reading anything I could about Mary Magdalene - this year my readings have gone towards the more ghostly spirits and how those that have gone before us still are driving forces in our earthy existence. I feel calmer, quieter and more happier to be quiet and with my thoughts now, I am strong in my conviction that there isn't a being higher than human kind but perhaps a resonating energy or spirit if you will that keeps us all moving forward, sideways, circular, vertical, horizontal, but hopefully never backward... today I feel blissfully tired yet accomplished and seeking the spirit in all things helps me find a joy within myself. Namaste - Shalom - Peace
This year has, in fact, marked a year where my spirituality has been sinking more and more into the fallow category. I became more aware of this during the Concentration Retreat this August, and I am not actively seeking to be awaken my heart--live more from my heart that I am and certainly more than from my head--and to therefore be more daily in touch with my spirit and soul. If you are reading this next year, I hope you have made progress!
My elderly dad is changing, his needs shift daily as does his cognitive ability. Six of us siblings and spouses have been meeting to assess and manage. The strength of this support is truly spiritual in nature. Each has a different, often conflicting perspective, each is willing to not lock down and dig in but consider others. We constantly scan the Horizon for answers and guidance. We access the Infinite Wellspring of Compassion to help us with him, our step mother and each other. We trust that we can't control this anymore but that the end result will be as good as it can be. We thank Gd everytime we sit down together for the gift of this sad task and for each other. Esa einai el he'harim may eiyin yavoh ezree.
I did...at my brother's memorial service. All morning long the sky was dark gray and raining off and on. As we walked into the main part of the church I noticed all the stained glass windows around the walls. As the pastor started to talk about my brother and all he had done for their church the windows suddenly began to dance with color. I assumed the clouds had finally broken up and that was letting the windows light up...but a few minutes later we walked outside and it was pouring down rain. It may have been a coincidence but it made me feel like God knew I needed to see his light at that particular moment in time. It helped get me through the rest of the day.
My renewed and regular meditation practice, which 10Q vault answers reminded me was a goal from last year, has been an important spiritual experience. Bali kickstarted things, but what really put them in place was the retreat up at Flathead Lake with the Open Way group. And after I lagged a bit toward the end of 2014 I read the Surya Das book and now have a regular practice of sitting for 30 minutes most days. For a while it was twice a day, but I'm giving myself a break. Jessie has been a great support and inspiration and partner in crime, and the Open Way has as well, though I find that I mostly prefer my home practice. Am excited for the weekend retreat in two weekends, and for the impact it will have. Overall the experience/practice has help ground me and has allowed me to feel more in charge and less reactive. It certainly got me through some difficult moments in England with Ben, and it helped me on my return to sit with pain and disappointment instead of trying to push them away. And I enjoy my workday mornings at home more, and my five minutes in the class room right at the start of the day.
I really resonated with Sara Beak's newest book about engaging with your Soul. I've been recovering from heartbreak and in many ways that has really highlighted the disconnect I feel with the Univerde and my own Soul. Intellectually, I believe we are all energy at the root and we are all thus interconnected, but I have a hard time finding this belief as a manifestation as physical feeling in my body, which is something I seek. A physical feeling and emotion, a deep sense of knowing in my gut.... What I did have is an experience where, during a guided meditation, I was asked to acknowledge a particular feeling as my soul, and instead I broke into tears feeling only an emptiness and a lack of connection. I don't have any answers at this point, and I can't say that I've done anything differently to try to illuminate that connection, but it continues to be a constant presence in the background of my thoughts.
Going to Sea Base. It was most relaxing and mind broadening to live on an island with no building on it, but only tents. No time keeping devices for 5 days.
I'm not sure that I'd call any of my experiences this year "spiritual." I have had good moments of feeling more connected at my temple, including a particularly moving experience of feeling supported in that community -- and for me, that's what being Jewish is about: feeling connected. But I don't think this is what is usually meant by spirituality.
Like last year, I haven't had the time to be spiritual. I've always felt very close to earth. I guess the closest thing I've felt is when Nan was dying and the whole family was there, minus dad. We talked to each other and comforted everyone. It was the middle of the night and that had a surreal feeling. Afterwards I wondered what form Nan was in.
I have reconnected with the things that are important in life - making connection with others around you. Striving to bring positivity to others around you - a smile a a stranger - a hello to a passer by - a kindness to do for someone you know or barely know. Making the world around us better - making the world happier for others is a blessing for me too.
The whole year has been a spiritual experience. It has presented me with opportunities to grapple with issues of mortality, compassion and ethics. For example, two close friends of mine - and of each other - died within three weeks. They approached dying so differently. Grace, with her solid Catholic foundation was hurt by her unjust god, and suffered spiritually and physically. Moira, without any framework for her imminent death embraced life and love to the last moment. I navigate through our society like wind moving between concrete buildings. Drawn to where the open space is, where there is room for conversation, reflection, removing assumption and position in favour of broader understanding. I thank Grace and Moira for their love in life and for the lessons they gave me through their death. (I'd rather have them than the lessons, but you gotta find the silver lining...)
I have not been spiritual at all this year nor have I had any spiritual experiences. I do not consider religion important to my life at all.
I have had some beautiful shabbat meals with song, torah and good company. An expecially nice moment was hosting a Friday night meal and doing kabbalat shabbat with my choir friends and a spontaneous Lecha Dodi to a Michael Jackson tune! Also profound havdalah with friends in the countryside. Reaffirming that the path to god is through people and that these experiences require planning and spontenaity.
Profound personal experiences... connecting with my unborn son in utero, almost every night around 2am. I feel we got lots of bonding time that we didn't realise would be so important due to the time we missed in the first months of his life after birth. And after my waters broke early, feeling those familiar kicks and wiggles as we were flown by air ambulance to Sydney for a premature arrival was profound. Another, and a real turning point from anger to gratitude during our NICU stay, was when baby Maya died. I remember looking over at the Drs doing their morning rounds and seeing one fellow, uncharachteristically, sitting during rounds. She looked exhausted. I then realised she was wearing the same clothes as yesterday and that she had in fact been there all night trying to help a very unwell baby who died a few hours later. Despite our NICU stay being it's own ordeal and very difficult in so many ways, we got to take our baby home, and others did not, and for that I will always be grateful. So many other worries in life pale in comparison. It's a profound perspective shifter.
Spirituality is such a subjective concept that it's almost impossible to define. One person's spiritual experience is another's coincidence, or intensity of feeling. I have transcendent occurrences in my life every day - are they spiritual? Yes, some. BTW, I'm not so sure that "secular spiritual experience" is not an Oxford moron.
I gave up dining out as part of my observances of the Lenten season. It was a truly was a remarkable journey of self reliance, self discipline, and self nurturing that transformed my relationship with food.
After 4 years of EFM (Education for Ministry) I had to share my personal theology. I'd never been able to speak comfortably about God or my relationship with him. However, on the night of commencement I articulated my belief in a basic golden rule: Love God, Love your neighbor as God loves you -- respect and care for all of his creation.
Realized the brevity of life fleeting and fragile
I went to my first musical concert. It was very moving... there was such energy. I've watched live performances on TV and heard them on the radio but being at one was soooo breathtaking
I often have spiritual experience and feel the presence of loved ones who have passed on. I also "hear" messages from what I consider the all-knowing part of me.
Closest thing to spiritual, and maybe it started last year, was achieving a state of calm like I haven't experienced in decades.
I have had many spiritual experiences this year. The most recent was teaching my Church's children about Rosh Hashanah. We talked about the significance of a new beginning, appreciation of life, breath, apple and honey and so much more. Independent to this a woman taught them mindfulness breathing techniques. The lessons meshed seamlessly. Another was taking 2 Japanese students horseback riding. We connected in a spiritual way. The memory of that day will stay burned in my mind for the rest of my life.
Traveling through Japan alone and visiting all of the different historical temples was a profoundly spiritual experience for me.
I am not a spiritual person so I would find it hard to have a spiritual experience. And the only holiday I've had this year was to Rimini, where I've been before, and all I did was play tchoukball, drink and sunbathe. But I think it's he most relevant experience was during my first Masters Skype interview. I've applied to do a Masters in Spain and was scheduled to start at 10:30am. There I was, dressed smartly and ready to interview. It hits 10:31, then 10:35, then 10:40, then 10:45. Finally, my Skype starts ringing. The first thing the interviewer said? "Sorry I am on Spanish time." That says it all really. I'm a laid back person but I am clearly well suited to living and studying in Spain.
It's sad to say, but I have not experienced any profound spirituality this year. I have wondered why this is. Am I not open to the sphere beyond the concrete? Have I not taken the time or space needed to connect to a higher plane? My colleague Ben is exploring Judaism, and I almost envy him his curiosity and insight into what is a new sense of community and spirit to him. At Rosh Hashanah services this year, I desperately tried to harken to the call of the shofar, but it just sounded like a horn to me. This lack of spirituality saddens me. I wonder if it is why my children seem to be resisting our religious traditions lately? Can they sense my falseness?
During a guided meditation that delved into a painful experience, I had a feeling of opening, of everything being okay, and thought how wonderful it would be to go through life with this feeling about whatever happens, no matter how painful or difficult. What a relief to not live in fear...
I visited Sachsenhausen concentration camp in Germany earlier this year. Last year for 10Q I mentioned wanting to visit Auschwitz while I was abroad in Berlin, but I didn't realize it was in Poland. Sachsenhausen was just an hour outside the city proper, and we went as an optional trip near the end of our time in Germany. There were about eight of us out of 37 total, and I was the only Jew. I was in tears for the entire time I was there and I intentionally kept to myself. From the moment I ended the long walk to the gates and turned the courtyard to see the entrance, I was in tears. It's... even now, more than five months later, it's difficult to talk about. There was intense sadness, and confusion, and anger, and that knot in the pit of my stomach that wouldn't go away. But there was also some... pride, I think. The people that did this failed. My very existence is a testament to that. It was incredibly important to me that I visit a concentration camp, and I'm glad I did. Hearing about the Holocaust is one thing, knowing every gritty detail. But being there, being in the place where my people were systematically imprisoned, tortured, experimented on, murdered, solely because of who they were... that was something else entirely. Even standing there it was difficult to grasp the enormity of what had happened there not even 70 years ago. It was the most intense experience of my life, an overwhelming experience, but I'm very glad I did it. Maybe it's odd picking a visit to a concentration camp as a spiritual experience, but that's the best word I can use to describe it.
I have started to read the Bible all the way through again and I have started praying more. I am not sure if anything super spiritual has happened. I am just trying to renew my faith a little and try to see God more in everything.
All experience is spiritual. Duh. A lover said to me recently that one of the things he appreciates about me is that I am spiritual. He added that he is not. I argued with him....
My best friend's husband is struggling with stage 4 cancer. According to the prognosis, he was to have passed away 5-6 years ago. What a witness to the power of prayer that he is still alive and doing very well even with many tumors. God has blessed his life through his doctors and many health care folks as well as through friends and family. Whenever I whine or complain about issues that are getting me down, I bring my thoughts back to Paul.....sure helps with the attitude adjustment or to take a different perspective on what is really important in life. Who knows what will happen in the next few months?? I will be called on to be supportive for my friend when he does go.....what a blessing. I just hope it doesn't happen for a long time.
My experience raising my son is the most spiritual element of my life. Going through the process of protecting him, nourishing him, accompanying him, all with the goal of letting him go, eventually, that's a profoundly spiritual endeavor for me. I have also been meditating more this year than before, and I find mystery and peace in the stillness that comes from that practice sometimes. It feels of the spirit.
I am continuing down my path of connection with nature and all that's around me. I have continued to garden, made some peace with the insects that scare the living daylights out of me, and I began my journey to have a fully usable, enjoyable yard by planting a lemon tree. I have battled depression a lot this year and have many deep downs it seems. But I keep coming back to nature and I am so glad I am.
I am on a spiritual journey and as my days shorten I find myself divesting of stuff (physical and emotional) that weighs me down. Letting go of expectations. More important than ever to DO important things, things that matter to me. Make a splash in the diabetes world! Save a piece of the bay. Create a place for community to do art.
I have daily spiritual encounters/experiences because of my relationship with God. Over the past year, I've noticed that I start my day with prayer. At first it was something I did because I was sad & depressed about my break-up. Now it's apart of my daily routine. Every time I get into my car, I pray. This routine has made me see how amazing God is. If something was troubling me, I talk to God about it. And because of my faith in him and how I believe Christ can do the impossible, I see things turn around in my life. This routine has also strengthened my prayer life. I definitely know that God hears my prayers
Taking a Judaism class made me think harder about my religion than I have in a long time, and made me feel closer to it by helping me articulate what I like about it. In doing so, I also learned that my experience of spirituality is really similar to my experience in another class I took this year: mindfulness meditation. To me, both are about noticing the world in a deeper way.
For me, music has often been my connection to a power greater than myself. It can move me to tears, inspire me, and fill me with wonder and awe. I had a number of these occasions this year. In January, I went to see The Last Ship in NYC with my husband. The music had been capturing my imagination for almost a year, and I'm so fortunate to have seen it before it closed on Broadway. And I continue to get a lot out of Tefillah with the Sunday School kids each week. Lifting our voices together in song is just magical.
I'm not sure I have. Honestly I'm not sure what this means. I'm not sure I've experienced anything spiritual or if I'd know it when it happened. There were magical moments, I suppose. One was going out to the pier in the night. Laying in the lounge chairs and looking at the stars.
I had the most wonderful constant experience for ten days, traveling by myself in Italy. I did what I wanted when I wanted. Ate when and where and what I wanted. Saw wonderful art. But, strangely, discovered that I had become invisible now that I am a middle-aged woman. It was fascinating.
No not really. I went paddling on a Dragon Boat and got exhaustion headache. It literally blew my mind it hurt so bad suddenly and my head still hurts my friends have said I should go to the emergency ward. Two people I know died within two days of each other right before The new year And I found out two days ago front of my son died in June. I found out that I didn't get my job that I've been working for two years even though I've been with the company for 15. I had my first root canal. Nothing but spirit crushing Annoyances. Life is a fools errand and I'm generally really Unhappy. Today the superintendent at work said we're having a barbecue to congratulate everyone for 500 days of no work loss Is there a problem with that? I said yes it's Yom Kippur. And he said yum it sounds yummy
I felt the presence of my late sister when I was finding it difficult to deal with something that had impacted my family. I often feel the presence if my late parents and sister of blessed memory, but this was so strong on that one occasion. I now believe that our loved ones' spirits live on - ready to help the living in times when they need it most.
I guess my "spiritual" experience would be my trip to New Mexico in October of 2014. It was like everything just fell into place for me to be able to go. The flight my parents covered, the hotel I got cheap and ended up splitting, and I found rides easy. It was like I was meant to be there or the universe wanted me there for some reason. There ended up being a guy there that was flirting with me, really he was flirting with all the ladies. But I had forgotten how it felt to flirt, to have a guy pay attention to me. It made question my no dating rule (I will only consider dating someone I already know and am friends with). I still haven't changed it. However, I do think I need to get out more and make some more friends. This only going to work and home is just not enough.
I joined a gratitude list where I share with nine other women three things for which I am grateful. Sometimes I post daily. Sometimes I merely read posts from the others. In all cases, it puts my life into perspective and enables me to navigate the ups and downs more serenely.
I'm feeling very disillusioned by western religion recently. With everything going on in the world I see more and more how much we need to develop tolerance as a human race for differences.
I have been sitting here in front of the computer trying to think if there have been any & I am saddenned to realize the answer is no. Last year I made a goal to attend the Buddhist Monestary and to pray more. I have allowed so much to distract me from what really matters that I don't have enough God or spirituality in my life, I miss it in my soul. I wish this for Zachary too, I think it would help him be stronger & less afraid. One thing, at my father's funeral, there was a red tail hawk that sat in the pine tree talking to another hawk in the trees on the other side of us. The red tail has become a symbol of my father, it has appeared for all of us, Zach did an art piece that included a poem, a hawk speaking to the reader. I read it when I am missing him.There is a red tail living in the woods near by my home, the other day when I was despairing I looked up and the red tail was sitting on top of the utility pole across from the kitchen window. I know it was daddy. I miss him so much, and mom too. Sometimes I wish I could be a little girl again living in the commmunity I grew up in, it was such a loving caring open & unconditionally accepting community of every race religeon & walk of life, and most of all I could climb into my father's lap and all my worries would melt away.
My wedding weekend was quite spiritual, especially the ceremony as we entered into a covenant with each other, witnessed by our friends and family.
Visiting the Western Wall was an awfully spiritual experience. Also, the night we spent in the desert was incredibly eye opening experience. I realized that in that moment, I was the best version of myself that I had ever been. I realized that I was in the most beautiful place and was looking at the most amazing thing I had ever laid eyes one. Realizing that even I could be desirable was also a spiritual experience.
I was in the Avi Chai Ivriyon program in the Davidson School at JTS, and one afternoon the librarian/curator at JTS showed us ancient texts, including one written by Maimonides, found in the Cairo genizah. It still brings tears to my eyes when I think of the power of those moments. I'll never forget it.
Smoking wed has helped me see things in different perspectives and with different emphases. It's been an interesting 3.5 years smoking, and although I enjoy it I think it make sit harder for me to connect w peple. So, i intend on slowing down my roll (gradually/at least drinking a LOT more often).
I feel extremely un-spiritual this year. This does not make sense as I am now a pensioner and should be more concerned than ever for the state of my soul as I am nearing the end years of my journey on earth. Perhaps I have it too easy and am not afraid of what will happen after I am dead. But why should I be afraid as I will have no control over that.
Since this round of questions is coming through post-Rosh Hashanah, I will mention 2 experiences that just happened as part of the high holiday season, since they're the most recent and at the top of my mind. When I went to Selichot, the leader started with the high holiday kaddish. It totally jolted me into the holiday season. During Rosh Hashanah a few days letter, during the first set of Shofar blows, I was brought in my mind to my grandparents home and synagogue where I spent all of the Rosh Hashanahs of my childhood.
Front row at the U2 concert was divine! I was in heaven for three hours, just singing my heart out, dancing and reveling in being so close to the band and ensconced in the energy and voices of thousands of fellow fans. And what a treat to have my husband, son, and two sisters with me!!
Not exactly spiritual -- but exploring my spiritual self. As part of a small group from my congregation, I have had the opportunity to think about large questions -- like what have I learned so far, what will be my legacy, when am I satisfied, how am I refreshed. The group is self-selected but not necessarily close friends. We have formed a special kind of intimacy as we explore these questions. Through this group, I am enjoying being challenged to think about how I live my life and what choices I make. It is, in its own way, a spiritual experience.
With the help of a counselor, Justin, I sought and found assistance with the stress of pending mandatory retirement from the military and involuntary separation from the National Guard. With Justin's help, the support of my family and friends, and God's miraculous gift of sobriety, I skipped participating in a "pity party", and focused on a successful transition to the next phase of my life. So far, so good...
The craziest spiritual experience I had while I was abroad was in Budapest. Though it was a hard weekend friend wise, I felt this supernatural connection to the city. Everything about it was speaking straight to my soul. I felt like I had walked those streets before, seen those buildings, prayed in the temple. It was such a comfortable place to be. I am convinced that I lived there somewhere in my past life. I always thought of myself as an old soul, and now I know where that old soul is from. For the first time, I felt like my soul was something bigger than myself. It was more than something I connected to through yoga and meditation. It was something I needed to be honored to have as a part of my whole self. I feel lucky to have a connection with an earlier part of myself. So much more makes sense because of it.
I have been meditating every day for two years now and my meditation practice has been developing. Even though it often feels like in a day to day sense I am not getting anywhere, I can see gradual changes in myself and my practice. I have recently started sitting in stillness and silence to experience spaciousness. Residing in this stillness and spaciousness, I experience universal awareness. It is beautiful to sit in this awareness that is always there. It is open like the sky. It is not thought or any other objects of the mind which are like clouds in the sky. Experiencing this awareness brings feelings of openness, equanimity and love.
As always, Alan Watts, Joe Campbell and the balm of music are reliable and continuing sources of succor to the old Pneuma
I have had a few experiences being present with my patients that are dying or have received devastating news. There has been an amazing connection I have been able to have with human beings at these difficult transitional times. To hold a dying patient's hand and see a quiet tear slide down her face because she knew that I knew what she wanted. Another patient's face light up and smile when I slid through the sad family gathered at her deathbed. She had been terminally extubated and death would come in a matter of hours. Another patient was ready to give up after multiple failed treatments ending in the loss of his entire tongue and speaking And eating ability. Just my presence and smile and conversation allowed him to believe he would get better. Just a few days later, he was discharged several days ahead of schedule because of his determination. I do not tell these stories because I hold them deeply precious to my heart and soul and I am proud of myself.
One yellow lily bloomed, I think it was a gift from my friend who passed, may she rest in peace.
The closest to a spiritual experience I have had is opening night of a play...when it all comes together, the exhaustion of tech leaves you vulnerable, raw and powerless....and then you just have to let it go....let the control go...and leave it in the hands of the actors, tech, lighting and behind the scenes...to make it all happen...and it is magic...it really is...because even with small mistakes...people step up, surpass their expectations and share an experience with strangers that gets them that much closer to understanding themselves...theater is physical and active...it is not passive...not even for the audience member...the stage demands the contract be honored... and as a director I make a promise... to make that experience important, entertaining, and hopefully memorable....and I am left often in wonder...at the process...and I guess that is as close to spiritual as I have gotten this year.
I've had a lot of great experiences doing yoga in the past year. Maybe most profoundly that the new yoga studio I found in Davis square reminds me a lot of my late grandmother. Doing yoga there makes me feel a special connection to her.
I went to the "Chanukah action" last year at Sixth&I, a non-denominational synagogue. The action was listening to mostly people of color, some Jews, talking about their experiences and calling us, as the Jewish community to action. I sat next to my old J Street organizer, and was surrounded by a number of people from my organization, and I had this intense reaction when the speakers started talking about their reactions to Ferguson and their own experiences. I realized that, in the midst of my work and preoccupation with other political stuff, I had never really taken the time to process my own feelings about the killings and riots. It was a reminder that, amidst a politically active life, I need ways to take care of myself, whether that be with friends, colleagues, or through Judaism. I was also reminded how essential progressive Judaism is to my life, and as I think about my next year in Malaysia, I'll need to think about how best I can cope with not having access to it.
I want a spiritual experience. I want to feel something, believe in something, not be pragmatic and practical all the time. Hopefully be this time next year I can crack a tiny window into that part of myself.
For some reason. I've been reading a lot of books about near death experiences this year. They were books I've had on my list for a while, but I binged and read them all back to back this summer. It helped me because I've always been scared of death, even though I believe in Heaven. But all of the people who were there and came back said the same thing:they would rather be there. It has helped me feel better about dying and also about when my own loved ones die. I think I will be comforted to know that they are in such an amazing place.
One such experience would be the sense of loss, and then community, when the Emanuel Church shootings happened in neighboring Charleston. It seemed unreal as the events unfolded, and Lezlie and I were in Cincinnati when it occurred so we caught pieces from radio news until we returned. The spiritual event was the sense of this community, unlike others where such horror happened, bound together. Charlestonians and the police marched over the Cooper River Bridge together in a show of solidarity. People lined up at 4 a.m. to get into the memorial service. Another spiritual connection is my deep tie to the land. It is, I understand more than ever now that I live here full time, IN your Southern DNA to connect with the land, the soil around you. The year round views of the marsh and the ocean are always a thrill. The marsh grass turns gold as winter comes and the Palmetto and Live Oak trees stay green. My ongoing joy at just living here and seeing nature first hand, where the sun sets on the horizon and not in the smog of Ohio, is truly as I think of it, spiritual indeed. WOW, I just looked back at last year's response and that land connection theme is just the same. My DNA has indeed unfolded and I am in daily touch with the land beneath my feet. My great grandfather is buried nearby in the Magnolia Cemetery for the Honored Confederate Dead and my prior generations dating from the early 1700's are laid in this hallowed ground. The land is actually becoming who I am. I belong. That is spiritual indeed.
This summer I figured out a way to meditate that works to both relax me and release a sense of grateful, attuned happiness: spending ten slow breaths at the end just listening to everything I can hear around me. Thanks to that practice I was much more able to revel in this moment of my life, to enjoy it even in its disappearance. And despite the fact that as I am answering the 10 Q question this evening I am truly, deeply annoyed at my preteen daughter, I can tell that the perspective I am gaining thanks to that practice is a power for calm.
Being there when a close friend lost her mother due to cancer. I wasn't even there in the same city, as I live across the country, but being that support person to someone in a time of mourning was something I won't forget. It was so hard to see my friend so upset, and so hard to find the right words to comfort her, but I know just having someone to talk to was all she needed.
This has been a year of trusting my gut feelings inspite of how things appear outwardly. It was hard after finally getting hired by the hospice house to quit when I found that I was extremely uncomfortable with the management style of the woman who would be my supervisor. The extra income and the bedside experience would have helped and it was hard to give that up. Ultimately I am glad I did. It would have been too stressful to work in all of the chaos that has ensued with their reorganization. I have also learned that there will be time to do work things and to relax and enjoy what is in front of me instead of worrying about getting my classes organized. That has been hard but is paying off in a more balanced home life.
I've really been distant from my spirituality in recent years, but two people who share my spiritual outlook came together with me to help when I was laid off, and some of my former spiritual community rallied around when my dad died and I was hospitalized (yes, these happened at the same time, it was not a fun winter). So I'm kind of feeling more inclined to take up the old reins again. I'm hoping to find some friends to do more musical/cultural things with me -- most everyone is working weird schedules or broke or hates the things I like.
I don't think I've had this much spiritual, internal conflict since I was 16. I was born and raised Buddhist; in many ways I never really learned to embrace the faith because I was uneasy with how little things were explained to me. A lot of it seemed like habitual rituals, blind faith, and a blame game to me. So I gave up on it as a teen because it didn't help me cope with the horrors I dealt with at home. If anything it made me feel like the matters in my life were unchangeable, determined by the hand of an unknown being. This past year, when met with the struggles of dealing with unhealthy relationships again, I found myself going to the temple. I drove there, mindlessly, just kind of on autopilot. And when I got there, I just sat there in their garden and realized how at home I felt. It was strange being back at a place that I once felt like betrayed me, only to seek out solace again. Did it refuel my faith? No. I think it'd be disrespectful to reclaim a religion unless I believed in it and I don't know that I buy into it. But I think it helped me be less skeptical; perhaps more understanding of why those who are religious are so. It made me feel safe.
Nothing spiritual this year. I'm learning to embrace my boring life as the best thing that has every happened to me.
Attending Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur service that's all I needed to fully believe, feel and openly be able to say what all always wanted in life : I am Jewish!!!
This year has been hard in so many ways. I started going to minyan a few times a week during Elul. It has been soul healing and in many ways heart healing. My wife sends me off with a kiss telling me to have a good time with God. It's true. That's genuinely what it feels like. It's a conservative shul, egalitarian, and I'm one of the few women not wearing t'fillin. And that still feels right to me. I can't keep up with all of the Hebrew. It takes some time for me to settle into the rhythm. And I love being there. I love being in the company of people praying with their whole hearts. No one is there at 7am unless they want to be. This experience has made it possible to me to enter into Rosh HaShanah feeling mostly whole. The word 'particularly' isn't working so well for me, though. I feel God in my life in my relationship with my wife. All the time. Every day. When I'm brushing her hair, or holding her, or watching her when she talks (as well as listening to her), or feeling her listening to me. We are good to each other; good for each other. We are good at making space for each other, and good at helping each other through space. It is no end of remarkable to me that in all of the world, in all of time, and space, and everything, we are here together in the same space at the same time. How do miracles like that even happen? Is that particularly spiritual? Or is that just . . . the very essence of God's presence? I don't know, but I'll take it.
Reading Gilead changed me in a gentle, open, spiritual way. Something about that book (everything about that book) created a peace in me that is so comforting. Also, I saw how truly being in love --truly loving someone deeply and fully, and letting yourself be loved in return just as deeply and fully --is quite similar to how some people feel about god. Like you're not alone. Like you don't have to hold all the weight all the time. Like you can rest.
Seeing a loved ones spirit flee his body has been a particular marking moment where you feel the soul departing a body and rising and mingling leaving those behind feeling a huge sense of void and relief for the departing one is no longer suffering. At moments such a surreal experience and yet a humbling one y come to cherish and hold on to.
Daily radiation treatments proved to be a surprising spiritual experience for me. I practiced letting go of control and concern for outcomes, and used the time lying on the table for prayer. The technicians were caring and gentle, and I viewed them as angels to help me heal.
There have been more than a few times since moving to Santa Monica when I have felt a great spiritual joy and gratitude for being here, in this time and place. There is something about looking at the ocean in all of its vastness and beauty that feels deeply spiritual and connects me to the greater world around me.
The conductor's recitation of the Amtrak stations between Baltimore and New York are a kind of bracha for me, so familiar I hear without hearing, yet hear on a different, deeper level. They reawaken echoes of train journeys starting in college and continuing to now, weaving together the various eras of my life, the dreams and frustrations, the connections and yearnings. The chanted list of stations is a blessing of gratitude for where I came from, for the city i did not know but now claim as home, for the family that raised me and the family I have made, and for my education and work opportunities. And it is a psalm of yearning, for meaning and purpose, for the comfort in the rhythm of the wheels over the ties. And it is a quiet hallelujah; this is the route I mapped out to the life I have wanted.
Yes. I realized that I am enough, spiritually. That without my former teacher and the group, I have found my purpose, for now, on the path. This has been a large and freeing realization. My spiritual path is valid without the validation of others. It's beautiful.
I don't really know if I had a particular spiritual moment this year. I mean I did work at a Jewish summer camp, but it wasn't a moving experience in any religious way. Maybe it's because it was reform, a type of Judaism that I'm not familiar with. I finally got to join Hillel full time, and started going to services more often. I guess there are times in my life I thank G-d for what has happened in my life during the last moments. I guess a pretty cool religious moment in my life was going to services in Florence and seeing that we really aren't that different no matter what country we are from.
Life is a spiritual experience. I like going out into Nature and just Being. I have been making time to do more of this in the last few months.
This year marked the 10 year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. I did not live in New Orleans in 2005. When I first heard about the hurricane, I was in my Advanced Composition class in my senior year of college. It's crazy to think how much has changed in those 10 years for me, including coming to New Orleans for residency and staying to work here after. But I can't even imagine what has changed for the people who lived through the storm. I have so many patients that measure time as "before the storm" and "after the storm." They tell me about how it made them depressed; or how they had a health problem that was going to be treated, but then the storm happened, and they just never had anything done in the mean time. To listen to stories on NPR, or go see the movie "Big Charity" at the Joy Theater, or read articles about the storm in the New York Times...it made me feel so much more connected to the storm because of how much I love this city now. It's been my home for five years. I didn't get to see what the city was like before the storm or immediately after the storm. But I have seen how it has recovered over the past five years. And although not all areas have recovered completely, I believe that the people that live in and love this city will continue to make it better every day. I have never before lived in a city whose people are so proud to be from there. But that's New Orleans. This city grabs you and becomes a part of you as much as you become a part of it. I'll always be grateful that I could call it home for at least part of my life.
Yom Kippur at the beach. After services we went to the beach and walked along the deserted shore. Enjoying one of God's greatest creations. And then we broke fast watching the waves.
I think whenever we get close to death, we feel something spiritual. A colleague I'd known less than 2 years quipped offhandedly, "I could die right now," and then was gone about a week later. This left me whirring with the ephemeral nature of life. It's all so fleeting. Whether she passed away in her sleep or purposely chose to die when she was feeling at the peak of her existence, death is so final. It leaves the rest of the people spit out like detritus in the wake of a swift motor boat disappearing into the horizon.
What has been spiritual? Perhaps seeing Judaism through my eldest daughter's eyes. Seeing how she notices the moment of ritual of the lighting of the candles and is starting to understand the concept of festivals. (However, she doesn't really understand the concept of time, so every day can be "daddy's day' - father's day). On a recent trip to Sydney for Rosh Hashanah she said her favourite part was 'Shabbat' by which she meant the lighting of the candles, the brachot and the challah. Seeing her learn and connect to Judaism is underlining for me how important it is to me and how much I'm glad I've got it in my life.
All of these questions just make me depressed. I so wanted my life to end this year. Everything just got too hard. I didn't, but I still don't know if I'm happy yet. I seem to just be existing and I'm waiting for my life to have more meaning. I haven't given up yet though.
I don't think there was one significant moment that defined my spirituality this year but I think it was a series of little moments that let me know that I was on the right path. I have felt very comfortable relying on faith to know that I'm at the rig place at the right time.
My spirituality has lessened significantly with all of the hardships I've dealt with this year. I've become numb to everything that once held a higher power within me, and I often feel bitter and cynical and angry. I have lost faith in everyone and everything including "god".... But slowly....just within the last 2 weeks I've started feeling creative again. I've started feeling happier and more content. Today, I invited a homeless guy to eat breakfast with me. I figure that I can't complain about the worlds lack of humanity unless I'm willing to set the example of how it SHOULD be done. I didn't feel a warm glow of compassion for having fed the guy. It was just the right thing to do so I did it. That's as close to a "spiritual experience" as I can think of. Just doing the right thing...
The Motorcyclist and the Meditation Retreat Last October, I was on a camping trip with my dad when I experienced the death of a motorcyclist. We came around the corner right after he had gone off of the road. Some people were running after him and calling "Does anyone know CPR? Someone call 911!" As a lifeguard, I handed my phone to my dad to call 911 and ran over to do CPR. There was a doctor with the motorcyclist who refused to do CPR. I wasn't sure why (although I later found out from a paramedic that MDs, unlike emergency responders who are supposed to keep doing CPR for as long as possible, supposedly have a knowledge and experience base that allows them to proclaim someone officially dead) and it freaked me out that he refused to do CPR. As the scenario unfolded my dad and I learned that the doctor was a Mormon leader, there with his teenage youth group. The youth group had been cutting trees to make wood for a widow in the congregation who subsisted on wood heat in the winter. Two of the youth had left the group and gone on the other side of the highway to cut trees without adult supervision. One of the trees they cut fell the wrong way - onto the highway - killing the motorcyclist. This experience wasn't just spiritual because it was the first time I ever sat with a dead person (and, as someone who was considering going into interfaith chaplaincy at the time, I stayed with the dead man until the ambulance came and took him away - it felt like the right thing to do). It was spiritual because it was the first time I was ever directly confronted with the question of evil. I felt ashamed of this. Shouldn't my outrage at God have been spurred by poverty? By racism? By war? By inequality? Yet, it was a motorcyclist dying that made me furious that God could allow such a thing to happen? As an activist, I felt sick with myself for not having cared so deeply about other things. But as a youth worker and someone who works in community service, I was particularly outraged by this particular incident. How could God have let something so terrible happen when people were trying to clearly, simply, purely, to do good? How could God have let these teenagers do something so horrific that would haunt them for the rest of their lives? (How could the adults have let those kids go off by themselves with axes?) I had been in a place with my faith where I felt like I was close to God, close to my sense of spirituality. I felt like I was onto something. I felt like I was on a journey toward something grand. And then, suddenly, I felt like there was no possible way I could believe in a God that would do such a thing. How could God possibly do such a thing? The next week, I attended a 10-day silent meditation retreat. And I mean SILENT. We were not allowed to read, write, or even look at the other participants. My goal was to get better at meditation, since it is a practice I have always struggled with. I was exploring the path of interfaith chaplaincy (albeit with much more trepidation after the previous week's events), and felt that as an interfaith chaplain, meditation would probably be an important tool. The retreat billed itself as secular. It said it was not tied to any religion. Yet it seemed like the principles behind the meditation method were Buddhist in nature. The retreat facilitators seemed to state, contradictorily, that we both needed and didn't need to embrace the Buddhist theology behind the meditation for it to "work." This seemed fishy to me. The seriousness of the retreat, with its stringent rules and its fervent following, also seemed rather cultish to me. On the seventh day, the teachings were about detachment and seemed to me to suggest that humans should not love each other because it leads to attachment. I had a strong emotional reaction against this. Love is central to my life and my spiritual understanding of God and the way God works through people. When I began to cry, I was led to the retreat facilitator to discuss it with her (the only talking we were allowed to do). She said that people often struggle with this part of the theology and did nothing to alleviate my concern about the discrepancy between teaching us the theology of the meditation method and telling us that we didn't actually need to believe in it. When I said that I wanted to leave, she asked me, accusingly, "Do you always try to run away from your problems?" I realized on Day 10, the day that I was allowed to leave, that I had been manipulated into staying. As I had with the dead motorcyclist, I felt horrified and felt like I had experienced a profound breaking of trust. Although I had heard about bad religious leaders (who hasn't?), I had always had good experiences with religious leaders. This was the first time I truly experienced the dark side of religion firsthand. I knew I should have expected it sooner or later, but it was still nasty when it came, like eating something rotten. Again, I wondered why I should trust a God that allowed such things to happen in the name of religion. I dropped the idea of becoming an interfaith chaplain, which was just as well because there was no way I was going to get into the clinical pastoral education class I wanted to attend (one focused on social justice). Angry, I sort of dropped all interest in supporting the idea of God. I was disgusted. I wanted nothing to do with a God that would support such things as what I had experienced. I broke up with my boyfriend, moved halfway across the country, and began life anew. One of the first activities I got involved with was singing in a choir at a Catholic cathedral. I was very excited for this because ever since I had first stepped foot in a cathedral, I had known that I wanted to spend more time in cathedrals. However, I didn't necessarily expect anything religious to come out of it. I wasn't Catholic, I wouldn't even identify as Christian, and although I had done church music before, it had always been "just for the music." But in this setting I found that I couldn't possibly sing "just for the music." Singing was a religious experience whether I had intended for it to be or not. Singing the music we sang, in that setting, was transformative. It was transcendental. It transformed me beyond my body to be a part of the music, which was so ethereal that I felt an unmistakable connection with God. I started feeling more spiritually connected again, even if I didn't know how I felt about the Question of Evil. And I was thankful for that. During the summer, I met with a mentor of mine, an older Catholic lady who's written some books on Catholic theology and works steadily for social justice and human rights. A few years earlier, she had told me that I had needed to have more mercy, which sent me off on a long journey to become less judgmental. When I told her what had happened with the motorcyclist and the Mormon youth group, she got a funny look on her face. Then she said something along the lines of, "You know what's most significant about that experience? You were angry at God, which implies that you have a relationship with God. You can't be angry at someone you don't have a relationship with." Well, she had me there. She recommended that I pray every day, not in petition or thanks, but just babbling. So I've been praying, or should I say babbling, to God. Not every day, but often enough. And I do feel different. I feel more connected. And it feels good. I still don't know how I can reconcile this with how God could let such terrible things happen, and I'm not even sure I want to be close to God, given that. But maybe that's not my choice, or rather maybe it would be better to see how things go rather than trying to direct their flow. This past week it was Rosh Hashanah, and I went to a Reconstructionist synagogue for the first time since high school. I was struck by how emotionally resonant the melodies were for me. I had kept them in my head and heart, but singing them with others brought tears to my eyes. The welcome of the board president when I walked in the door, blonde-haired, blue-eyed, also brought tears to my eyes. I had never been welcomed so heartily into a Jewish community without question, and it was the thing I had always wanted the most from the Jewish community. I did cry during the Mourner's Kaddish, thinking about my brother's friend who committed suicide this year. I hadn't said the Mourner's Kaddish since he committed suicide, and it was a bit much for my emotions to handle. In the evening, I went to a potluck gathering at a park. At the gathering I ran into a few people I had met at a Passover gathering earlier in the year, who I had wanted to get to know better but hadn't had the chance to. I remembered just how much I liked them as people and as activists committed to peace and justice for all people, and realized: this is a community I can be a part of, and my life will be richer for it. I still don't know what I think about the question of evil, and whether or not I am "okay" with believing in God if God is so callously cruel. To some extent I think I'm just ignoring it for now because I feel the need to feel connected to God and I'm done being angry at so many things at once (my parents got divorced the other year and I realized just how angry I can be...). But I am glad to be in more open relationship with God, or at least trying to be, and I am hopeful for the future. Who knows, maybe I'll become an interfaith chaplain.
I had problems with my mom and I was feeling very lonely. I felt if my dad was alive he could talk to her and try to get her to understand what she's doing is hurting a lot of people. My dad had given me a pair of earrings. For days I was looking them and could not find them. The day I was down the most n wished my dad was here to help me. I was crying and very upset. I opened my dresser the pair of earrings were right there right in front of me. I open the dresser drawer every day. For days it wasn't there. Now it was right in front me. I believe my dad is watching over me and by finding the earrings I felt I can overcome my problems with my mom and things will be better.
Eh. I can't think of any. I have experienced some awe and wonder watching my kids at their best, but that would probably cover it. Not bad for a minimum, actually. I love those stinkers. :)
Last year on Yom Kippur, when my daughters asked if we could all go up on the Bima - the Rabbi invited anyone who had a particular troubling year to come up during prayer, to feel the strong sense of community. My girls were thinking of our difficult year, and mostly the loss of their 19 year-old cousin who took his life the prior winter. My husband was not with us at this particular time and missed the experience, but it was still a special family moment, because they requested it
Not that I can think of. I went to a national park in Utah this summer, Zion. And it was so beautiful. It was calming. Maybe that was a spiritual moment. It gave perspective but not. Like a quiet moment.
When I connect with the infinite while playing the piano! Yes. Or hiking high into the hills...higher, and higher into something unknown, yet possible.
Phil's decision to convert to Judaism has forced me to examine my own faith and my reasons for going to church - I have had to realize that my faith is between God and me, no one else - even my husband - and church is more than a social time with Phil - I feel alone now, but understand that God is my sufficiency and He is more than enough - some days are easier than others - Sundays are still hard -
I think my spiritual experiences came this summer when traveling with my family to Great Britain and Iceland. Seeing nature in all its beauty and getting to spend amazing quality time with the people I most cherish in the world put me in touch with the true meaning of life. I am so grateful every day for these blessings and more.
Isn't every day a spiritual day in it's own way?
There are those times when I cook for my family and friends, when the meal comes together perfectly, the ingredients all work, and everyone savours that first bite together. The conversation hushes as the meal is savoured and appreciated.
I think the closest I have gotten has been out in nature this summer. Giving me feelings of peace, comfort, and connectedness.
In Sedona with Graham, we went to the Buddhist Amitabha Stupa & Peace Park. It felt like walking on sacred ground. We had a hard time finding it, but on the fourth try we did. I didn't bring my bag, only my camera. There were alters, prayer flags everywhere, hundreds and hundreds of them, and offerings too. I had left everything behind in the car and didn't have an offering. Graham stopped at one spot, reached into his pocket and placed his 6month sobriety coin on an alter. Shortly after I removed the serenity prayer bracelet my daughter had given me, and left it as an offering in a small tree. The whole time was a profoundly beautiful and moving experience, I never wanted to leave.
My back yard was a weed garden, which I liked because it was green, and free of maintenance. One day I walked outside to look at the space, and I noticed there was a tree growing very close to the foundation of the house, and starting to break the concrete on the patio. Something had to be done. I asked the associations gardner to help me out and he turned the backyard into a cultivated green garden. The back wall had looked like a prison wall, but now it is starting to flourish with a vine full and green. Since I tended to my garden my life has also gone from stressful and stuck to full of potential. I definitely believe there is a connection! I look at my yard and feel happy that I have a beautiful yard, I look at my life and feel free to grow in positive directions.
This is interesting -- I decided when I moved to LB that I would learn more about Judaism. So for about six or seven months I was studying with a Rebbetzin. I've recently lost some interest. But more importantly, I've been touched by Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis' book, The Committed Marriage. It's the single most important book I read this year. I think she's wise and helpful, no matter how you slice it. I got to meet her twice, as well, which was the best part of getting connected to her. Her bashert concept is uplifting and helpful and makes me yearn to meet my bashert.
Music! It's always awesome to immerse myself in a concert- Phish, Aristocrats, Zappa Plays Zappa, Steven Wilson, and the list goes on. On a more serious note, being present for two deaths at work. Pretty amazing stuff.
I suppose dropping off Brian's ashes at the rock at Beaver Creek was pretty spiritual. It was a gorgeous day and he will look out at Creation in its finest form for as long as the crack in the rock exists. I felt good leaving him there and will go visit him every chance I get. It's a special spot and I know he would love it.
No. What am I doing wrong in my life that I haven't had any spiritual experiences this year?
This year, I think I had a sense of clarity in my spiritual life. I think of it as the dust of my cluttered life settling into a deep level of simplicity and just being. And I managed to do more in a calm manner than before. I used to be flustered and out and about, frittering wildly and unable to sit still. I realized that being still and working hard is a lethal combination and it has allowed me to see what's really important to me in this life and my reflections on what comes after it.
There was a moment on the sixth dive when I had control of my bouyancy, and I floated like a fish or a cloud or the gaze of a diety over the blue abyss. I will get back there.
How Am I supposed to remember the past year? I can't really remember anything. These questions are going to get harder and harder to answer I suppose. I can remember things that happened recently I guess. I couldn't forget Rosh Hashanah, after the rabbi stopped and reminded us to pay attention to the words we were reading from the machzor . She has been reminding us for a while to pay attention to what we're reading and saying, to really listen to the words and feel the words and not just read them mechanically. Shortly after she said this to us, she began to cry while doing one of the responsive readings. She was taking in our pleas for justice and an end to war and famine and all these great things we were praying to God for, and she couldn't stop herself from tearing up. Her voice got shaky, and she asked us to read along with her,. It took a little while for her to regain her composure. I felt like she took me to the place where she was. I appreciated the lift.
My daughter is having a baby and the father is not Jewish, this brings the question of how to raise the kid, I looked at my ancestors photos, all the suffering they endured, how my great grandparents did not see Israel became a reality, always a prayer a hope, with great faith,and now with have seen all these promises coming true. I got scared that my daughter will not chose to follow our steps, to make her other half happy, and I am praying and trying with pain in my heart to let it to HaShem but it is very difficult.
Watching my friends Ryan and Chris get married, two gay men joining themselves together, was pretty moving and spiritual. Especially since they were able to have their wedding on the lawn of Ryan's fantastically-conservative parents' home. Seeing people who just a couple of years ago were decrying a "lifestyle" not just allowing but embracing the happiness and commitment and love of two people together was very moving, and I was glad and honoured to be a part of the process.
I think that re-joining the American culture has been the most resonant thing. It is not particularly spiritual or anything near it. But having lived in the UK for the past almost 12 years, the shift back to the "American Way" has been been both comforting and indicting. Given the time (age) of me at that specific point in my life - and my associated maturity when i moved to the UK - I am amazed at the change in me from when i went there to returning. I think everyone should live abroad for at least a year - from wherever you come and whatever you can do. EVERYONE should be able to expand his/her horizons and experience base.
My meditations have gotten deeper over the last year. I often feel physical sensations in my head, my hands or my feet as I meditate. A buzzing feeling that draws in my attention and helps me to focus on no-thought.
The most profound spiritual experience I've had this year was reconnecting with Source. It was because of the 12-steps and being forced (in some ways) to recognize how far I've gone from connecting with the spiritual piece of me that used to be so powerful. However, through the process of giving up sugar and then quitting my job, I either was going to go crazy or find the Higher Power that was always there but to whom I had turned away from in lieu of thinking I could do it myself.
Going to the Gemaldegallerie in Berlin. I was in Berlin during a pretty tough time and was missing Theo. I have always had a weird relationship with Berlin, from the first time I was there I felt a strange energy. But even more intense was going to an empty art gallery full of beautiful paintings. Obviously I have studied many of the ones that are held there but I forgot about their beautiful collection of Botticelli. I have never had any deep feelings for Botticellis work, or so I thought. But when I walked in I saw a draft of his Venus and burst into tears. It was beautiful, and there she was, reminding us of the timelessness of beauty. Eternity is really something.
Haven't had any that I can recall.
I have tried hard to connect spiritually & sometimes feel that by putting out positive thoughts can help although I may be so down in my own thought processes that I can't see the positive energies that are coming to me. Clear vision for me is required.
I feel God is changing me heart regarding having children. I prayed for him to show me the right path for me and slowly but surely I think I'm wanting to fall pregnant...
I've had many small moments of feeling blessed, and wanting to give something back. I came across the teachings of Pema Chodron, which has given me a framework to pursue a spiritual path I've been needing for a long time. I want to deepen that walk.
I haven't had any spiritual experiences, even artistic, cultural, etc. I enjoy life just as it is. I wouldn't consider myself even remotely spiritual. I am grounded much more in the realism of each day. I love to think. I am a thinker. I enjoy living without any particular thought about spiritualism.
This year, I've started to do guided meditation. It has been calming, and slows down my mind. It helps ease the worries.
Yes! Being able to own my preferences about how to pray (and how not to pray)- allowing myself to let my light out, and not try to fit myself into a container that is much too small and not at all right for me.
I honestly don't think I have, other than the enormous emotional boost I get from having writing accepted, or sometimes from singing.
I believe I've had a lot of spiritual connections this past year. A lot have to do with music, with Jonathan, and from traveling in Europe. I found myself having deep moments all the time abroad, especially when everything was perfectly in place, or I was looking at a gorgeous view - those moments were spiritual.
My increase in meditation and different meditation practices like Tantric Pujas has helped me get off long term medications
My whole life has been one, where it is so obvious HaShem makes sure my needs are met. It has deepened my faith, trust, and gratitude.
This is an excellent question. If I stay awake, if I stay tuned in I do have spiritual experiences on a regular--almost daily--basis. These are usually small insights, which turn into big awakenings over time. This year, many things happened in my family. My father died. We had a difficult relationship. But, I've worked hard over the years to release the anger, and resentment I felt toward him. I learned that whatever he did or didn't do, was not personal to me. The things he chose to do were because he had his own flaws, including pain and fear. When he died I got to feel closure. I got to feel forgiveness. I even got to feel love as I recognized the good things he had given us. This experience has allowed me to feel a tremendous amount of freedom.
Level 4 at HAI left me with an impact which is still working its way through. Opening me up with each iteration. other than that it has not been a specifically spiritual year which i find surprising as I was going to focus on that this year.
I have been studying other religions and have taken insight as to how those who participate in their religions, value them as much as I do.
I've definitely been meditating a lot more than ever and felt the effects. Got up to 10 minutes a day sitting outside Joan of Arc Chapel. Also visited the Haggerty Museum really for the first time ever without having a specific reason to. Felt amazed by the sights.
Rediscovering my faith - still working on making it more of a daily thing, but at least now I know where it is...
I have recently rediscovered my love of art, and creativity. For the longest time, I didn't draw or create anything, but it seems I have found myself again. I have become happier, and have chosen three art electives for senior year.
6/9/15.... or 22 Sivan, 5775 I went before the Sandra Caplan Bet Din and then was imursed in the Mikvah and came out of the waters as Miryam. The day was amazing. Driving down to Los Angles there was a smattering of rain off and on, such a rare thing now-a-days that it felt like Hashem was blessing me. And when the Mikvah Lady talked about only needing "a kiss of living water" I realized that what Hashem had been giving me all the way down.
I am not sure how to respond, which may indicate that I need to spend some time encouraging this side of my life. In 2008-2010, I experienced a desire to return to catholocism. But I did not and then I fell back into my generally agnostic beliefs. I am inspired by Pope Francis, but not necessarily inspired to return to the faith. On the artistic front, I did have one significant experience. I started my novel called the Fall of Rome. I think I actually wrote some good stuff, but I need to do more. I think this will be my goal for next year.
I think my atheism paradoxically makes me more open to having these spiritual-like experiences in everyday life. For example, hearing an awesome new song or one I've always loved has the power to stir me in rapture-like ways. The film "Ida" did this, the song "Perfect Circle" still does. The beauty of my drive to Green River in Utah with Ry Cooder's "Paris, Texas" soundtrack on the stereo as a thunderstorm moved across the sky. Three hours at the St. Martins soup kitchen with my usual I crew. All of these have a spiritual component, however secular. Can an artistic, emotional, giving to others view of life replace God and religion? I think it might.
I just finished watching a documentary called "Human" where a team interviewed thousands of people all over the world. It was an important thing for me to finish during this week especially, and it made me feel hopeful that I will be able to contribute to this world.
Spiritual experience - watching my pregnancy grow and develop and giving birth that was not successful naturally but truly a miracle of modern science was amazing. Watching my husband grow and change through his health crisis has also been humbling. Appreciating the #BlackLivesMatter movement and showing support for American Jews of Color is a positive that has drawn us together.
I am a very spiritual person and I have tiny little things happen all the time. The type of things that if you say them out loud or write them down... can appear silly or awkward. But, to me at the moment it was very real and special. Each time I have a small spiritual moment I learn something or something is clarified. It can be as small as recognizing someone else's feelings at a certain moment. Good question but so hard to answer.
In April we visited our daughter who was studying abroad in Florence and had a lovely time with her. We'd been to Florence before, but this time we had made arrangements to visit the Uffizi Gallery with a guide, Lior Aviv (formerly a bank manager in Israel, who followed his dream to study art history and become a guide in Italy). I had told him of my love of Caravaggio. The tour was wonderful, he made all of the art accessible to us, and our daughter really learned a lot and enjoyed herself. The final painting we saw was Caravaggio's Sacrifice of Isaac. It's a powerful painting, and as Lior quoted from the Bible passage in English, I heard the chanting of the 1st Torah reading on the 2nd Day of Rosh Hashanah in my head, and the tiny hairs on the back of my head stood up. I have chanted that reading in the past -- it's so moving. The whole experience of that moment in the Uffizi will never leave me.
This is something I very much struggle with. I don't know how I define spiritual, and I don't know what really counts as a meaningful experience or moment for me. This past year though I have been appreciating nature and land formations and changes more than perhaps in the past. I think some of this is due to the travel I was able to enjoy over the summer and afforded me the opportunity to see different parts of the country and different types of land. It is amazing to me how different the earth can look in different places in the world. I am not sure if this is astonishing in a god way or in a divine way or a spiritual way or if it is just beautiful and breathtaking. There have just been some beautiful moments at the peak of a mountain or watching a body of water and the birds above it that make me feel small and infinite simultaneously.
For awhile I found davening pretty moving. Rocking back and forth with the siddur, it was almost like meditating. But that tapered off. Even seeing the ark open with the Torahs dressed in white on Rosh Hashanah didn't give me chills like it usually does. Kind of disappointed in myself, like I should be trying harder (what ever that means!).
I can't think of a significant experience, but there have been a few moments when I'm walking outside through Ithaca at night, and I look up at the night sky, and I can see stars and constellations and it's warm and quiet and maybe I've just left something fun and interesting, like the of Montreal concert the other night, and quickly I'm put in a peaceful place where I can see stars incomprehensible distances away shining right down into the streets of my town and I think: I love this city so much.
This year I learned the incredible spiritual impact of volunteering my time and energy, and that the value of charitable work cannot be quantified in dollars nor results. The kids and I took part in the One Square Meal program run by our church over the summer. I am ashamed to say we almost did it more as an activity for us than to help anyone else. At least that was how it started. But after that first meal I saw we were all changed. I thought it might be difficult to get the kids to go back and do it again, because it was a time drain and it was sometimes tedious work. But week after week I had absolutely no trouble getting them to go back and do it. It spoke volumes to me, especially because as busy as I was, I felt the same about it. What we were doing was so much more than feeding people. We were connecting to people we would probably never interact with otherwise, and that made us a different part of the world than we had been before. It was like finally discovering a use for a body part that had henceforth only been in the way. To say "we felt good about ourselves" doesn't begin to describe it. We felt more real. And I think that's because we were. It has made me see that that needs to be a part of life, at all times that it is possible. It is necessary to work for our personal gain, to make our life good, make sure we have opportunities and advantages. But if we do not also contribute effort and energy to work that is not for personal gain but rather for a gain that has nothing to do with us, I think we shrivel in one corner of our being. It was like breathing life in ourselves, reanimating something that we had heard a legend could live, but never experienced. It's a heady experience but in a very calm way. And it's nothing to compare to a "natural high." It is not addictive. It is not distracting. It is not an escape or a thrill of any kind. It is the most subtle of subtles, the goodness that happens. I have learned, so deeply, to keep that in my life whenever I can. It is not instinctive to say yes to it. We are so trained, if we are well-trained, to conserve our resources and spend them wisely. Don't give away money you might need in a crisis. Don't give away time when you already don't get enough rest. Those are great rules, but if they are applied in totality I think they end up threatening the well-being of the whole. There must be times when something trumps our own betterment. Because of this experience I have volunteered to teach Sunday School. I will continue to volunteer for the church choir and I will do more for it. And any other opportunities that come up, I want to give to them, time if I can, because I think that is a far more valuable gift, but money if I can't, or if that is truly what is more needed. Another amazing spiritual experience is one that I've had through my husband. I know I am very morally grounded, I have a strict code of integrity and honor and I don't feel much tolerance for people who don't have that, for people who allow themselves to hoodwink other people, for people who are smooth-talkers and use that to their advantage. I know my husband is a good man who treats people well, but I also know that we are different in our moral compass. There are things I would not accept that I wonder if he does. We talk about it but . . . I know that my strong opinions, when well known, can make others reluctant to share, if theirs disagree. I can see how it would be true. For a couple of years now we have had something of a disagreement of vision regarding our sex life. There were things we had talked about and were considering, and they were appealing to both of us, in some way. But I saw a danger in them in as well. He did not. I felt like this was a fundamental difference in us. I did not feel like this was something that might change, in either of us. It gave me anxiety because it's a hard thing to compromise on. I'm willing to go very far for a compromise. But what if there is no way for there to be give and take? We came upon an opportunity this summer, an opportunity we'd been waiting for for over a year. I thought, "This is it. This is when we'll have to try this." But I still had reservations, my feelings hadn't changed, and so I initiated a conversation about it. And to my surprise his position had changed, drastically, from where it had been in the past. It took me a little time to see that, but he cited several things. He cited growing older, growing up, maturing. He also cited having sat in church now for a whole year. And what I love about our church is, I know that it didn't make him ashamed, that's not where he was coming from. What he realized is what my objections always have been -- not that it's bad, but that it's dangerous. It's a threat to something good and precious to us. That might not get wounded but there is a danger of that, and why take that risk? This was something that I had tried to express many times but had been unable to do it. Something that he heard, in the pragmatic sermons our pastor preaches, was able to make that clear to him in a way that had never occurred to him before. I found that to be profound. It showed me that there is reason to trust the good people in my life that even though they are not perfect, as I am not perfect, they will still attempt to make things for the best, as I do. I don't have to try to make everything right and simply endure when I can't. Other people can and are capable of stepping up and making something right, too. And in fact a lot of the time it will rely on other people, and I will be powerless. This is not a change that I caused. This is something that happened inside of him. I've seen many changes in him in the past year. He's grown up a lot. I don't credit that all to the church, rather I think, like with Sunday School for children, the lessons bolster something that is already happening inside. Sunday School doesn't take a problem and make it go away. It only becomes valuable when you are already wrestling with the problem. I see that the lessons from this church, which are by far the most honest and human sermons we have heard at a church, are doing something similar for my husband. It shows me how valuable worship can be, when practiced properly. But like all weapons, it needs to be respected by those in authority and used only for the purposes it was strictly intended. Something that's gone so wrong in our country. We don't just need gun control. We need religion control.
Hiking the AT. Being alone in the woods for weeks is about as spiritual as you can get. I can't describe it, so hesitate to do so here. I feel most at peace there, and also the most struggle. I hear my thoughts, I am aware. I work through them until there is no more negativity or anxiety left, there is nothing but stillness. Stillness, and birds. In that stillness and birds lies the truth. It leaves once you enter society again. But I will find my way back. Back to the zen. Back to me loving me, knowing me, knowing my place, living in the grand moment of the present now. The more I hike, the more I can willingly go back there, in my mind, at any time. It's a practice. That's my spirituality.
I think with age, we talk less about our spirituality and experience more. I think that each year I become more clear about my own cloudy spirituality. The division of what is real and what is not is constantly difficult. The important things in life are more about the people in our lives and how we effect them in positive and productive ways. It is less about what we have accomplished and what we have amassed materially and more about our influence based on experience that we can provide. It is understanding the importance of relationships in life.
I had no spiritual experiences that I can recall. I'm really don't believe in an afterlife. Though I find the concept interesting. Does consciousness really end at death. it seems such a waste.
I have spent the past year trying very hard to put myself back together again after an awful break up. There was no one moment of revelation but I do recognise that I have changed as a person. I have cleansed body, mind and soul - trying new experiences meditation, chakra balance, exploring what the spiritual means with other questioners. I know more about who I am and who I am not than perhaps ever before in my live. My only regret is that I am 52 and it took me this long to work it out.
No. I may have been more open to spiritual experiences in the past than I am now. I don't know.
This year has been filled with spiritual experiences. The most moving experience has been when Sheila, the cashier at A-Z, gave me a copy of the Bhagavad Gita to read. I enjoyed the chore of reading and examining this piece of work. Three ways we live from - knowledge, ignorance, passion. Then there is the real way to live.
Oh not really. I did have a baby, so i guess that should count. and I saw King Tuff and Jenny Lewis shows. that was pretty good.
I don't recall that I have. My main spiritual goal, which is a slow work in progress, is to have/maintain more patience in dealing with my boys, especially in doing homework!
I started working on dealing with my fear from a shamanic perspective. This entailed going within, and trying to connect with my fear. At first I couldn't see the fear, because anger was loud and agitated and protecting it. When I finally did get to my fear, I saw an old, withered creature that was in ill health and close to dying. I asked two of my priestess archetypes to go and cuddle the fear in between them, to let fear know that it was okay to go, and that it was not alone. This has resulted in me being bolder and more willing to put myself out there in the world, and allow myself to be seen.
I've been able to tap in more and more frequently with the consciousness field and allow answers (like this one) and information to come to me. I've become more trusting of myself and confident in my abilities. Plus it's cool when I channel Bud to answer Brenda's questions so I get to stay out of it :0)
Yes. This last year I have had a very profound spiritual experience. I have been studying the North American Goddess Sedna, and I have gone from seeing her as a victim goddess, to seeing her survivor state, and now I see her as the creator of all the sea animals. I now see that her motto is, "I always take care of myself first." I have learned the importance of self-care and the importance of self-reflection. I know now that what is for my best highest good is for the best highest good of the universe.
Wow. Yes. I got shivers just thinking about what I was going to write for this answer. Working with and getting to know Rabbi Dan has reignited my interest in Judaism personally. That has 100% dovetailed with ending the relationship with Derrick - an event that I didn't take so seriously but keeps coming up as a threshold in these responses. Now that I am dating again and looking for a marriage partner, I find that the question of Judaism in my life is extremely relevant and important. As such, I find myself really choosing to only date Jewish guys and thinking very hard about conversion. This in and of itself feels like a spiritual experience and journey. Besides my really great conversations with Dan, two experiences stand out from this year. One happened on July 4, with Sephora's father. As usual, he grilled me about having not converted yet. I told him that I am hedging my bets in case I fall in love with a non-Jewish guy. He posited that perhaps I haven't found the right guy yet because I'm not being true to who I am - and just going ahead with the conversion in the here and now. I think that's a salient point. Also probably not grounded in reality. But I took him seriously anyway. Todd is a bit of a mystical figure in my life - he floats in for one day every year, the same day - and floats out, but every time he says something that really sticks with me and makes me think. I am grateful for his big mouth and opinions. Second experience was with Rabbi Andy, who after we worked on a grant proposal together discovered that actually I'm not Jewish. He came up to me and said that yes, indeed, I am pretty much already Jewish, and that "it's just a matter of paperwork." That was a revolutionary idea to me. What if it were just a matter of a quick dip in the mikveh, and I didn't have to make any other major changes to my life? What if nobody even had to know? (The ethics of that question are unresolved in my mind.) What if that's all it required? Before that comment, the process of conversion was scary and felt like a big burden - meaning that I felt I would be locked into a certain set of obligations and conversations and things that I didn't necessarily want to engage in. But Andy brought a freedom to my thinking and is emerging as the type of spiritual leader I want to latch on to in my journey this coming year.
Spiritual and the arts combine in writing my personal ashamnu: My Alphabet of Failings © Jan Sokoloff Harness This year, I confess alone, my alphabet of failings: For the sin of anger against those who challenge me And for the sin of belittling those I don’t understand For the sin of criticizing without caring And for the sin of doubting the strength of love For the sin of enjoying what I shouldn’t have And for the sin of purposefully finding fault For the sin of greed when I have so much And for the sin of hating drivers I don’t even know For the sin of needlessly imagining problems And for the sin of joking to avoid a truth For all these sins, oh God of forgiveness, Forgive me, pardon me, grant me atonement. For the sin of kindness too often withheld And for the sin of loving in measured touches For the sin of malice toward those who are richer And for the sin of nourishing my worst intentions For the sin of observing when I could be helping And for the sin of pretending I am less than I am For the sin of quitting when I still have fight And for the sin of not resting when I am exhausted For the sin of saying it doesn’t matter And for the sin of thinking they can read my mind. For all these sins, oh God of forgiveness, Forgive me, pardon me, grant me atonement. For the sin of not cutting the umbilical cord And for the sin of not visiting my parents enough For the sin of not weeping, to prove my strength And for the sin of never forgiving my ex For the sin of yearning to alter time And for the sin of repenting at the zero hour. For all these sins, oh God of forgiveness, Forgive me, pardon me, grant me atonement.
My daily meditation practices seems to have helped with advantageous synchronicity through out my day.
I pissed off a gypsy. OK, so I'm not kidding. See I got curious, and stopped at a house with a sign for a psychic, just for kicks. Of course, she tried to tell me that my aura was so terribly weak, oh my, and I should spend $1200 bucks for her to fix it, see... I didn't. But when I didn't go back and didn't call her again, about a week later, I was awakened in the middle of the night by what felt for all the world like being fingerthumped - hard - between the eyes. There was a buzzing noise like a beetle, that interrupted a dream, and then the noisy beetle smacked me and i was wide awake, bolt upright. The spot on my head was stinging and red. There was no bite or stinger, there were no bugs, nothing had fallen from around or above the bed or on the wall, and my dog was fast asleep at the foot of the bed. A year ago, I would have said, no way... but I think that's what I got for pissing off a gypsy. I put salt water and sage by my bed, and a red thread around my bedpost, and I wear a personal amulet now. Who woulda thunk.
Watching my daughter grow has been profoundly spiritual. On my birthday this past year, I started the #365grateful project, for which I post a picture on Facebook every day with a comment about what I'm grateful for that day. Almost all of my pictures and gratitude comments are about my daughter, a few about my husband, and very occasionally about something outside my family. It has been a rewarding project, though not quite as rewarding as if hoped, because I often feel like I'm fudging it to get something pithy or interesting.
The fact of survival continues to move me. I see it all around me, in the way flowers grow in the middle of the pavement. I will always feel the part of me inside that wanted to die. I'm not sorry for that. It keeps me tender and open. It helps me see it in others and be present to them, without judgment or fear. I can sit with them in the woods. And I continue to see the grace all around us, in the way people show up for each other, listen to each other, see each other. That grace is astounding. Where else would God act?
The most spiritual moment I had this year was travelling out to Seattle. The beauty of Washington state is really astounding to me. As I was coming back on the ferry from Bainbridge Island to Seattle, in the middle of the Puget Sound with boats surrounding me, islands behind me and the beautiful cityscape in front of me, I was more at peace than I have been in a long time.
Italy. I saw Pope Francis up close during one of his general audiences in Rome. The Sierra Club's Franciscan Walk through Umbria put me on trails that St. Francis of Assisi walked. I was overcome standing in St. Clare's home, San Damiano. I put my hand on the stone stairs she walked every day. Seeing the original San Damiano Cross where Francis heard God ask him to "rebuild my church," to touch the walls of the Portiuncula, the first church St. Francis rebuilt, were both profound experiences. And then to hike up the moss covered, tree-canopied path to La Verna where Francis prayed and meditated, was amazing. I hope these experiences will percolate into my soul and help me grow.
I went a little harder into spirituality this year, because I feel like no matter how hard I try, I can't seem to land a job after the interview process. Trying to make sense of that lead me to Hindu rituals and fasts that should remedy the issue. I've yet to get what I want, but I do enjoy reconnecting to my religion and all the colors, sounds, and sights that come along with it. If anything, it seems to drive my creativity.
My spiritual experience is to not to have any affiliation anymore. I moved from the area where I was a part of a wonderful Jewish community, congregation and family. Unfortunately, they are so wonderful it's been very hard to join another community.
My spiritual experiences have happened in opposition to what I see as a manipulation and distortion of spirituality. All around me I hear people proclaim their love for God or their commitment to their faith or the Bible, on and on ... and then in the next breath say community isn't important to them, or bad mouth someone, or exclude people they deem "others". It breaks my heart. People are fallible of course, but the sweeping discrepancy between "love thy neighbor" and "not in my back yard" leave me gobsmacked. Worse even when it is supposed religous leaders who promote the unspiritual wrapped up in holy verse. Wars throught the ages have been waged over whose god is "better". It makes me so sad. So I guess the most spiritual experience this year has been to internalize, codify, and live by the spiritual lessons I have learned and to treat others kindly. I'm not perfect ... but I am trying.
My spiritual growth is slow and steady. I feel more able to handle crises, like my sons' illnesses. After a bit of folding this year due to loss of relationship, I am now coming back a little at a time, giving the healing a chance to complete, but honoring my own progress on my spiritual path. I am practicing hatha yoga each day, meditating most days, and now taking an Ayurvedic class to deepen my understanding of another way of looking at the body and at life. Life is good.
singing in the synagogue's choir this rosh hashanah -- WOW. one of the most powerful experiences of building a spiritual community i've ever experienced. my voice, joined with the voices of others, soaring and climbing in prayer and becoming something more beautiful than any one voice could be alone.
Mr. Burusso's brain cancer went away. I think it had gone into his lungs too. His daughter believes in the power of prayer and (mostly) I do too. I'm pretty sure a number of people prayed for him and amazingly his cancer went away. So at the time this really renewed my faith in the effectiveness of praying. However, his cancer came back and it's terminal. So....I wonder. Does prayer work or not? I know God can sometimes say, "no." And the snow in the woods in Switzerland was incredible. Walking in the silence in the forest, looking at this cathedral of trees was awesome. How mighty and beautiful is Nature. I always feel closest to the Creator when I am in Nature. Walking the labyrinths have been spiritual. The first time I walked one as a group I felt the hand of God on my hand.
I found a place in the forest one day. A valley. And it was so quiet and empty. I don't know if it was spiritual. But I felt at home and safe for once.
Three that I can pinpoint: 1) The transition from Presbyterian Christianity to Judaism. After being "let go" from the Christian church after refusing to be baptized, the warmth of the Jewish community has enveloped me in peace. 2) The incoming blessing into my life of having a piano in my home. A real, not electrical, piano. It has changed my course of my personal development (education, focus, career). 3) Reading the story of a transgender individual, and fully comprehending that no, transgenderism is not a "choice," but a literal state of being. This story opened my chest and heart to acceptance, and was profound.
I've been discerning whether I am able to participate in a trip to Israel in January. The process has pinpointed many areas of gratitude.
I skipped this question yesterday because I just really didn't know how to answer it. I don't consider myself a spiritual person. I have a mediocre stance on religion. I don't want to just say a blanket "no" but nothing really comes to mind either.. What I appreciate about this question though is that it has really made me try to look back at the whole year- where was I working, what was important to me - the bigger and the more minutia. Maybe I'll have a better response for this one next year..
I have been cogitating on this, and cannot come up with a single moment that is big, and cannot pinpoint one from the daily myriad of small ones. Every time I come back to myself, to my body, to my breath, is a spiritual experience.
Modeh Ani with my gf. Gratitude and anticipation. Daily.
Oh yes! Traveling in Armenia!..It was such an unexpected experience. I knew about the sad history of Turkish Armenia, but knew very little about the country ("Eastern'") Armenia. I didn't know that their language differed, for example. But personally, it was something in those green hills, the dark yet strangely welcoming monasteries, the beauty of Lake Sevan, the wonder of Yerevan on a Saturday night, when everyone of all ages were out and enjoying themselves, and most of all, the unforgettable view of both Mt. Aragates and the almost floating and inaccessible peak of Mt. Ararat from the Genocide monument. It's still with me all the time.
I guess the only thing spiritual this year so far has been going to various museums. I really liked the Metropolitan, and the Lego exhibit at the Franklin Institute was great. I loved going to Baltimore, and would like to see their art museum.
Yes, this year I definitely had a spiritual experience. Since I was a toddler I could always tell if someone was sick, even if they didn't know. I could hear, see and feel spirits. This year I decided to "come out" and do this work professionally. So now, other than my regular job, I also do spiritual reading. One of the most fulfilling experiences of my life.
My grand daughter's health took a turn for the worse when she was in her 8 month of pregnancy and we almost lost her. She was able to have a healthy baby and to regain her own health. This has given me a boost to my beliefs and my spirituality.
Absolutely! To begin this year, well last September. I was going through a lot of changes in my life. I had my heart broken, I was about to graduate from college, I had to grow up in my mind. I was working one day at a car dealership and a girl who worked there was wearing a stunning ring. She proceeded to tell me where she got it and advised I go check the vendor out next time he is in town. I competed for Miss Atlantic County and the next day got on the bus to NYC to meet this man named Pitango. He sold these beautiful rings all around the world. I contacted him on Facebook and he gave me a time, a phone number and a location. I showed up in the east village after the bus and several subway transfers and called the number. I walked in this apartment building and went to the 6th floor (stupid of me but I had my phone on 911 just incase). I get there and we take our shoes off hug for a minute, I was offered tea and I took a seat on the floor around all of these rings. There were other people there from different walks of life. After three hours I finally picked out a ring. The ring symbolized the spiritual experience I encountered while I was there. The ring is spiritual to me. It reminds me to keep my relationships in check and allows me to better myself while I do so. The meaning behind this ring and the way it came into my life was something so spiritual, Its difficult to even try and describe the feeling. It has traveled with me all year and been a constant reminder to cherish the relationships I have in my life and learn from them.
Last year during Yom Kippur I felt something drip on my head. I then had the same feeling while walking Bailey. When I looked up, I saw a very blue sky with leaves swirling down like a scene out of a movie. There was no tree above me. I felt it was a sign from my mother.
I have come to the conclusion that Jesus is not the Jewish messiah and the Jewish people are right about G-d , the messiah is still to come. This was a hard reality after being raised in a christian home.
No particularly spiritual experiences this past year.
I feel like I have been broken down totally this year with the Jesse thing. I was basically living out of my car, homeless, just devastated. I asked my mom to pray for me. That desperate. I feel so lucky to be pulling out of that. I feel like I am remaking myself, rebuilding my spirit. That feels spiritual to me.
In many ways, I feel that nearly, if not every, day I have spiritual experiences. Breathing is deeply spiritual. Feeling grateful and noticing beauty. Showing kindness. Being frustrated or confused. The human experience is spiritual to its core. I tend to think that my engagement with technology, advertising, and corporate presence is less spiritual - pavement and pollution, consumerism and competition. However, I am slowly wondering if a yin-yang perspective is a better fit. Perhaps the light and the shadow both are a part of the larger whole, even though I think the shadow is way out of control. Perhaps it is also about Trust - trust that the world will find a balance amongst all the destruction and greed. I tried mushrooms a few weeks ago, which led to a profound emotional opening that was completely spiritual. My sister was there the entire time, receiving my questions and rants, my pain and my love. My soul felt so much that I have been suppressing from feeling during the past year's journey. I cried in a way that felt like I could go on forever. My deepest injuries were allowed a voice. My sister and I found a new degree of closeness from that time together. I want to facilitate that kind of release in a more regular way, so that there isn't a build-up. I am a vessel - the energies of life may flow through me in a way that serves the Everything. I am growing in my capacity to express and be that vessel, which is inspiring and healing. Drawing, writing, singing, dancing, screaming, crying, laughing, sunrises and rainbows, the trees and the rain, tender words and honest ones. The planets themselves. All of it is a part of the process. They all are leading me to become the person who I am.
After my brother John's death going to a sand-sculpting event and one of the creations was a "Dear John Letter". It was like a communication from him. I visited him in the hospital before his death and on that trip I found sand in my clean bed. There was no sand anywhere near where I was staying. A Native American friend of his, told me it meant G-d was carrying him home and referred me to a poem called Footprints In The Sand. We had just bought a home a mile from a beach months before he went into hospice.
Spiritual Experience this past year...Being in Israel with my Dad & his Temple. Since our trip I am looking to reconnect with my Jewish roots.
Maybe watching Ailey last winter? Feeling present to the power of the black lives matter movement and the range of who we are as black people? Mostly, I feel like I've blocked my own spiritual energy and ability to access the power of the universe by being so angry. Being at FAWC and doing the letter to self exercise and laying on the floor with my work was also really powerful. Allowing myself to experience loss and grief and pain, which I have mostly blocked, was a big deal. If I had more time, if I didn't waste what i have, if, if, if, if... I'd like to make more time for my spiritual self this year. The way we spent rosh Hashanah this year- crearon the comunitario that i need, rather than getting angry and bogged by frustration and disappointment with my blood family was a great first step. Hopefully I can keep that up with food and friends and fun, making the Judaism that I can engage with deeply and claim.
In Rome, we went to St. Peter's Basilica, where we observed Michelangelo's masterpiece in the Sistine Chapel. Seeing such artistic and religious accomplishments has inspired me to search for my own calling and pursue creative success in whatever I do.
As I am converting to Judaism, I feel that over the past year I've come to really "get" it - I can now read Hebrew competently, I can daven properly, and as a former atheist I've been able to effectively "buy in" to God, coming up with my own conceptions and understanding of Him thus allowing me to participate in prayer services authentically. It's also made me a better, more charitable person as well!
I experienced many dreams and in the hospital I saw patterns of light shining in the darkness. Not sure if that is a good spiritual experience or a negative one. I would say it's tough for me to determine what is psychotic and what is spiritual.
I am a city boy, grew up in a metropolis. Every time I encounter nature I feel spiritual. This year we want out to the ocean 2-3 times and to the redwood forest a few times. I felt a sense of awe every single time, emanating from the largeness of natural forces and elements, that has nothing to do with man-made objects. It may be the simplest form of spiritual experience, but I believe it is more than fine not being sophisticated in this regard.
The week that Nathan spent visiting me changed my life forever. I truly feel a connection to the divine when I am with him. That week changed me to the core of my being and I can no longer imagine being anyone else.
Doing internal family systems parts work with my therapist has been a spiritual experience. Has allowed me to embrace things I have taught myself to squish deep down.
Having to fill in for areas my business partner couldn't handle had caused me to seek "beyond me" help and to discover new areas of interest. So, it became a hidden blessing.
My deepest spiritual experience this year is sexual. The intense bonding of body, mind and spirit I've found with my boyfriend is unlike any other. I'm grateful for this.
Yom Kippur was incredibly spiritual during the Musaf Aleinu when it is customary to bow, putting one's head on the floor. I find the idea of it moving. Sometimes I feel in deep touch with my Neshama, especially now, during our increased spiritual time of year. Spirituality, whether inspired by positive or negative experiences, directs me to the broader higher purpose.
I went through the bible this year and that was amazing and spiritual for. Although I have grown up with a "spiritual" family, leaning on my own has helped me better I would understand what Christ and Christianity is about. It's still a long way to go but it has to start somewhere.
Small moments. Small moments, walking in nature, whether it's by the sea shore, or in woods, or by a lake. Small moments. I've caught myself smiling, just because I'm there, and I'm walking in nature, away from my desk and my computer and deliberately not looking at my digital devices. Small moments.
I have attended Shabbat services most weeks over the past year. Often I feel that I am in contact with God there. Not in any big aha moment, but in sense of a quietness and peace. I love to sing the prayers and sometimes I feel the connection through the songs.
Many. My life has changed in many ways. Mostly from the inside out. Lots of growing pains. Lots of wonderment. Lots of gratitude.
Wayne Dyer died, so I watched The Shift (a few times, admittedly) while simultaneously attending a Conference on Child Abuse and Neglect. The science behind trauma struck me deeply, and the personal understanding of its loud and lasting impact will forever inform my decision making. I came out of the week a new person.
I participated in an all-female, two-day "desire mapping course" at the beginning of the year, led by my long-time, off-and-on yoga instructor. I'd never done anything like it before, and it was a great experience: both due to the great women who were involved, as well as being able to really focus on myself and my desires. The upshot is that you come up with five words that you want to focus on in different aspects of your life. The words I decided on were: Joyful, Fulfilled, Empowered, Authentic, and Connected. While they are great words, I haven't done the best job of following through with them for the rest of the year. I'm thinking a monthly/quarterly check-in would've been nice. At any rate, the experience, even if just those two days, were wonderful.
Not really, and I find that very disappointing. I relish the hallucinatory flashes of dreams these days.
Theater has always been a spiritual place for me. Becky and I want to see Cinderella and it was pure magic. Plus being with my daughter in a theater filled with mothers and daughters was not lost on the both of us.
Sharing with my chaverah has been a gentle warm blanket for me. Singing in a synagogue choir has been exhilarating .
When distributing my father's ashes into the waters that were fished by his ancestors, a rain squall pelted us. We all rushed for our cars. This stopped the crying and moping. We didn't have time to be sad. It was as if Graham shooed us away to go on with our lives as his spirit had moved on with his.
I maintain my disapproval of the term "secular spiritual" and I really, really hate this question. If you mean artistic, cultural, or emotional experiences, say that. Quit shoe-horning "spirituality" into aesthetics as a way of sounding more philosophical. How's this: the most "spiritual" experience I've had this year was when Geeks Without God interviewed the chapter head of the Satanic Temple Minneapolis Chapter. I really, really hate this question. Please change it to something else.
My most spiritual and healthy and happy moments occurred when I put my phone away for a long time. I hope this is still a possibility for the generations to come.
Going to the opera is a spiritual experience for me.
I wish I could say I have had a spiritual experience. I am beginning to wonder whether all this stuff is crap. In my heart I believe it is real, and does inspire and motivate some. I just wish I knew how to get in touch with my spirit guide and ask for some help. Ask a past relative or someone who can help me decide the next path to take. I have been introduced into the spiritual world for a reason.. I just wish I could connect.
The Silent retreat that are Good and Beautiful group had was very special. The group itself has been one I've really enjoyed. Last fall we started studying the good and beautiful god which dealt with faults narratives we may have had about God and explained how his love for us is so strong and transforming. We practiced silence and several other spiritual practices that brought us closer to the Lord and to each other as a group. The second book was the Good and Beautiful Life. Get more out of ourselves and into serving others. Our small group grew closer and we started having worship nights where we actually saying in the spirit and prayed in tongues. Who's really beautiful I think I need together with this group will be a great church plant. The final book is called the good and beautiful community. I believe this will help us usher in to the new church. We are practicing doing good works as a group.
No one particular moment strikes me from this past year as specifically spiritual but going to Peru and Ecuador with Maya was amazing. We spent 3-4 days together to finish our trip in the Amazon at an Eco-Lodge (Ithamandi) where we met our guide Franklin. We had a very peaceful experience with him and learned some about Ecuadorian culture.
Arlington. 'Nuff said.
Solitude, being with my daughter, being on a boat in the ocean and feeling so small, seeing a full blood moon, being with others, teaching students and taking care of others. The feeling of being one with humanity by being in the intentional, authentic presence of others.
I'm answering this question a day late because I've been thinking about for that long. I used to have spiritual experiences all the time- I would pick them out each day, justify my existence by them; simple things like appreciating a sunset. I would pat myself on the back and declare myself 'spiritual' for it, or I would do a single yoga pose, or two yoga classes, and give myself an A for spirituality. But I couldn't think of a single spiritual experience this year. Plenty of sunsets, and even some yoga poses, but nothing that at the time I called spiritual nor anything that I can look back on and say it was. The best I can come up with is some really good sex verging on ecstatic. It seems that I've narrowed my definition of spiritual to be so limiting that it needs to be something really special for me to recognize it as such. Part of me thinks this is a bad thing, but I think its because I no longer need to justify my survival every day based on how 'spiritual' I am; I no longer cling to that identity. It's possible that I don't even believe in spirit anymore- certainly not the way I used to. I think when I was younger, I 'became spiritual' because it's an easy thing to become- no one really expects you to provide a reason or make sense of it (religion and religious idiocy are so culturally ingrained) and I needed to become somthing lest I disappear into nothing. But that's no longer a real threat anymore. I can just be. And enjoy a sunset, without it having to MEAN anything.
I learned the Grace of God flows in 2 directions and not just one.
This is all I can think of at this time: I walked very far in the morning. It was a very hot day. I worked really hard in the garden, raking the lawn with a turf rake. Then I sowed grass seed. First I used a manual seed spreader, but then I just reached into the hopper and sowed by hand, trying to copy the sweeping motion of Millet's peasants. I was hot and sweaty and covered in seed, mulch, and lawnfood. I washed off in the sprinkler, getting up close and being hit hard by the water. Tired, drenched, I sat in the sun. My body felt inredible, as I savored rest after exertion and an even body temperature after being too hot and too cold. An intense feeling of well-being welled within me, and I realized how much I enjoyed physical labor.
Oh ho! For the most part, I have not. But I have read a couple of profoundly significant books, and heard some profoundly significant things, which for the moment will suffice as stand-ins. I read a fascinating history of Zen Buddhism, which led me off in all sorts of directions, and I read the Dao Dejing again, which I continue to think about. I also listened to Liu Ming's introduction to meditation class, and let me tell you... THAT sure got me thinking. The Daoists are, as represented and embodied by Ming, the most spiritually with it group I could think of, despite the fact that the notion of spirituality, as such, would likely confuse the heck out of somebody steeped in Daoism, a tradition which has avoided duality in favor of the Dao, the ineffable, unknowable somethingness of all, but which, for shorthand, I might consider unity or oneness of all things. Ming's meditation introduction has me wondering all kinds of things -- can a Catholic become a Daoist? What does it mean to be Daoist? Is a meditation practice sufficient to change my life? I guess these are more spiritual questions that arise from a life seemingly missing that dimension. But they are, for me, significant. The only times I currently have experiences that I can consider approaching the spiritual are when I'm outside, in the mountains, sitting, with nobody else around but my wife. This is when I find the spiritual, which speaks to a sense or idea of the spiritual as atavistic in a way.
Yes, I attended a volunteer training with the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center centered around loss and death. It was very spiritual!
I must say there were two. First, my sister's eye surgery was successful, she did not have cancer and did not lose her eye. And as important......answers to our prayers.....after all of this time.........our grandchildren contacted us. These are small miracles to some...but prayers answered to us.
I have had a number of sources seemingly telling me to unplug and disconnect. Truth is, I actually want to, but I don't because I am just now making headway as a writer and I'm not sure how to keep that up while unplugging.
No. I have not got any spiritual experience. Only my reinforced love to science.
Faith talks with people, especially staff. Talking about what it means to live knowing your loveded not afraid of being alone. I know it in my head, it can't feel it in my life right now. Wish I could get back close to that again.
Practice works. When you're uncomfortable, you're in a place of growth.
There was a pair of paintings along with a musical accompaniment in Vienna that brought tears to my eyes. They were two self-portraits, a year apart but one shortly before the painter's suicide, and the most beautiful and painful and moving illustration of the onset of madness. I think Anthony's influence has really opened the world of culture to me in a way I never quite got before this year - I never 'did' or 'got' art galleries like I have with him, I think I've rarely emjoyed proms as I did this year with him at my side, and we've also gone to some wonderful opera, as I really never have before. He's even got me listening to Radio 3!
I think the most spiritual experience I've had was reconnecting to the congregation I belong to after taking a year off. I also believe that seeing my clients benefit from the process of counseling also leaves me feeling connected to the universe.
Yes, I am spending more time in contemplation because I know that through prayer and meditation I can find peace. I enjoy that peace that comes through being closer to my Creator.
I've not had a spiritual experience I can think of this year, I do believe such things can happen to non-religious people. I have performed mundane rituals - so mundane that calling them rituals sounds too grandiose. I have marked the passage of a year on particular days that were significant to me. Sometimes with relevant people, sometimes alone. Kinda like this 10Q thing, I looked back a year and reflected on where I was then and how things had changed since then, hope, happiness, sanity, peace - not always as quickly as I wanted but I have been steadily improving.
Writing and sharing a newsletter every week, growing an audience, and hearing from so many people back has evolved into an ongoing spiritual experience. I enjoy the creativity and new perspectives I develop - writing has become an integral part of improving my overall health.
Over the course of my life I have had several spiritual experiences that, to me, border on the mystical realm. Climbing a Mayan structure in a rain storm, and having the storm increase in intensity in response to my challenging yells; standing on a roof in Berkely at 4 am - with no reason for being out there but an insomniac impulse - asking out loud, okay what am I doing out here - and at that exact moment, having a giant, horizon to horizon, shooting star streak across the sky; playing with the ocean surf and having it play back in a way that seemed to respond and mock my thinking; ...however, I don't recall any of those happening in the past year. More so, I have had to work to see them. I have had to get past the work worries, and new baby stresses, and spousal negotiations, and family negotiations, etc etc etc...only to catch glimpses of such universal play...and I can't remember any that raise to the level of those spiritual experiences... That said, I was just nearly brought to tears of joy when my 1 year old son, after peeing on me, proudly showed me how he could walk, by walking back and forth between his mother and me, diving into my arms each round with a huge smile...that happened a moment ago, and upon reflection, strikes me as very magical and spiritual indeed
Writing and preparing for the wedding ceremony was spiritual for me. Jenn and I worked through some prep questions together (although we never made it all the way through!) which helped us think together about the life we are building. I spent a day by myself in the week prior, focusing on getting ready for the commitment. And building the ceremony allowed us to work together, with our Rabbi friend who was officiating, to draw on the themes and meanings that most gave shape to our lives. Before the ceremony, our friend took us aside and reminded us that being under the chuppah is magic, and to fully soak it in. It really was - and it filled me up individually and us as a partnership.
When I listen to music, I am free. Free from responsibility, from problem-solving, from thinking. I can move my body to the music and enjoy myself. The best time is when I listen to music and drive along a winding road, because then it feels like I am flying as I sing along with the wind in my hair and an open, scenic road before me.
The oneness blessing has affected me, as has the practice of spacious awareness. Both of these together with my ongoing meditation practice hVe given me an experiential sense of the ongoing Presence and my connectedness with it, even when I can't feel it.
No big experiences, but I try to find the joy in many little things and the beauty I see all around me. Happiness is definitely my journey.
I met with a Shaman for several sessions and had one of the most profound spiritual experiences in a very long time. Through my meetings with the Shaman, I felt released of the overpowering negative energies that were dragging me down emotionally and spiritually. I found different ways to feel connected to God that were meaningful, positive and supportive. My emotional state of being changed from feeling frightened and uncertain about my future to feeling relieved, free and purposeful. I was not sure how this experience would help me, but I grew tremendously from it.
Being raised Roman Catholic, I still live the values of our Faith even though I refuse to go to church at this time due to my divorce over a decade ago. I was filled with hope when Pope Francis was chosen. It was a breath of fresh air for me. The values of St. Francis, whom he's named himself after have always been a part of me. I have always believed that if I had been born male, I would have joined the Franciscan Brothers. I think just getting older gives one wisdom and I see things more from a worldly view. I have hope for the Catholics and hope that all religious and non religious can coexist. I can see us rising to a higher level of enlightenment as a human race if only we seek it.
Definitely lacking spiritual experiences this year! And as for 'cultural' I think the best thing was taking our daughter to her first pantomime! She loved it and I felt like a child again. Double win. Needless to say we have already booked tickets for this Christmas!
In general I have a negative balance in this area in the traditional sense of the word. However, I had the world's most perfect vacation with Andy in Punta Cana. We were flush at every moment with gratitude; for each other, for the place, for our experiences and recharge. We were healthy, we were in synch, we took care of ourselves and each other, we had fun, we relaxed, we recharged. Yes. I'd definitely call that spiritual.
I am learning to clear beliefs and love the enemies in self. Im learning more patience and understanding of self and others. Im learning to have high expectations and to insist that they are real and possible and to see the evidence that they are now here.
I am not sure if I have. I so rarely consider myself "spiritual" ... Perhaps next year I will have a different answer.
I have always hated the word "spiritual." I use this word to describe some idealistic belief and romantic notion of the unknown. However, in the last year, I have become more friendly with this word and view it as an emotional experience. My goal is to have unique emotional experiences that change the way I think
Joining roller derby has truly been. A rebirthing. I am losing weight getting healthy and starting to be more confident in my body and abilities. It is waking up a part of me I thought was dead.
I've been studying the law of attraction a lot and watching in awe at how my life has changed.
Singing for people at end of life and with my Threshold family is a major spiritual experience for me. I was able to successfully "reboot" without leaving home - spending 3 days on a liquid fast, meditating, reading, writing, listening to music, looking at the trees. Since then, I have meditated for at least a few minutes every day. This is a big breakthrough. Yesterday I did my tashlich at the river. Today I went for an energy healing with a qi gong master. Tomorrow I am singing at a hospice memorial service. these acts have helped lift me from despair, hopelessness and helplessness that i have been feeling.
Hm, spiritual. Well, in my body, I continue to feel stronger and more attuned through yoga practice. In my practice, I had a very devoted summer, practicing daily. I took a break in August. Anyway, back to the question of spirituality, nothing really comes to mind. Becoming stronger, and knowing there is more to learn feels gratifying. I can finally do a headstand without the wall nearby, for months I was doing it a few feet away, without the physical support, just more a psychological support. The pose completely unaided feels liberating.
I spent some time on Manitoulin Island where I was able to participate in two sweat lodges run by Dakota Sioux First Nations chief and his two singers. I felt transformed, and was very aware of my breathing and my lungs. In many ways, I felt the healthiest I have been in a long time. Subsequently two weeks later, I got news from my surgeon that I have a spot on my remaining upper left lobe which he thinks might need resecting. Odd to me that my lungs were very present to me in the darkness of the sweat, and then the doc had this news from my tests before I went to the Island All connected to my heart chakra, so will need to pay more attention to heart-healing and inspiration (intake of breath) over the next while.
I had an amazing spiritual experience on my trip to Israel. In the Negev Desert, we ventured off at night and sat and reflected. I had never felt closer to God, or closer to my stepdad who had passed away the year before. Sitting under the stars on the same land where thousands of years before me the heroes from the Torah had stood was the most incredible thing I had ever experienced.
By far the most significant spiritual experience I had this year was witnessing and being able to enjoy my community this summer like never before. My community is mostly known by New York City at large for crime and poverty but I've never seen that. I've always enjoyed where I lived and this summer on several occasions, I fought back tears overcome with joy because of what I was experiencing with my community, my new found family. Whether it was concerts at a pedestrian plaza, or speaking to artists at reNew Lots, or just shopping at the farmer's market my heart was filled with joy, almost as if I was witnessing a rebirth. It was and is beautiful and indeed spiritual.
Actually yes, I had the amazing experience of seeing a lightening storm while flying. In June 2015, there were thunder/lightening storms across the US. I was in Washington DC and the night before I was to leave, I was awaken by a bright light of lightening, followed by a loud thunder roll. For me, it is an act of nature that awes me, as we rarely see this in my home town - so it is exciting. As I was flying home, I looked out the airplane window and saw the most amazing site...there was a storm cloud high above the lights of a town. Within the cloud, lightening was battle itself -Boom, boom-boom, Kapow. I watched in fascination this light show, as the plane veered to avoid the storm. It was a most fascinating display of nature, that made me truly appreciate the power of nature.
On the occasions of Will's graduation and Mad's graduation and wedding, I was reflective and awed by them and the powerful love I have for them. When I experience such moments of pride and joy, it occurs to me that it doesn't all just happen by accident.
I feel I can talk to the departed souls, I feel their presence.
Taking myself to the steep ravine cabins for a night confirmed my need for solitude amidst nature. It's a testament to my support structure that I am even able to take time to focus on my inner world while exploring the outer world. Time with tears, time with trees, time with the sea, time with me; so deeply grateful to both my mama and to earth.
Meh. This hasn't been a particularly transcendent year. For a few minutes on the day that the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage, I felt like I was part of something bigger than myself. But I was alone in my car and didn't have anyone to share it with, and my wife just doesn't get emotional over things like that, so it was both inspirational and sad at the same time.
My spiritual experience was joining the Unitarian Universalist Church. I am not really spiritual at all. I don't believe in pink unicorns or fairy tales in the sky, or any other beings up there or anywhere which are not proven to actually exist. I do not believe in gods. I do believe, however, that for me some sense of community is a helpful thing, and I found that there was a burgeoning agnostic, atheistic, humanistic (ie, freekthinking) community at UUC, so I started attending there. I have not gone in the past few months, but if I ever do go to a church again, that will be the only one I go to, and for most of the past year, I went there on a regular basis, and I sang along with the music and participated in activities and enjoyed the humanist gatherings and the after-church breakfasts, which were as spiritual to me as anything else about my non-church church.
My adult bat mitzvah was definately a spiritual experience. I got to be on the bima with my husband and 6 other women who made the two year journey of study and community with us. I was able to chant prayer, torah and haftarah in Hebrew. I was happy and joyous and full of love for the community, our friends and family who were all there. I got to tell the story of Matthew and how he brought me to this beautiful religion that I can now fully embrace at my own. I cried, for what we lost when we lost Matthew, but also for what we gained. I felt his prescence there so strongly. When his dad was reading torah i felt like he was looking through my eyes and was beaming with joy. It was an opportunity to feel such love and joy combined with loss. But instead of focusing on what I lost I was able to see and embrace what I have gained. I know that made Matthew smile.
I always look forward to answering the 10q questions as a major spiritual experience. They affect how I see myself, my relationships, and my spirituality.
Reconnecting with my inner poet and artist has further allowed me to access more spiritual moments. Spending more time in nature. Listening to more music.
I'm beginning to understand, in my own skeptical way, the yoga ideal of being heart-led. It not only changes your posture, it makes you more confident and compassionate. Also, I'm seeing evidence of this confidence and compassion reshaping my environment in a fortuitous and positive way. For many people this feeling would be akin to the sensation we call "good luck", but, for me, it seems controllable.
Going to Costa Rica without Ike was a big step. Riding the horse and doing the zip line allowed me to connect with the kid in me. Scared but glad
I'm not sure this word even has meaning to me anymore. I guess the experience of being pregnant again is pretty close - though it's less earth-shattering than it was the first time, it's still amazing to know there are tiny bones, capillaries, and nerve cells forming inside me that will eventually walk around and be their own person.
I joined Connecticut College Hillel and it has exposed me to people from all sects of Judaism. Some people are very serious about the Sabbath while others observe and see it as a day of relaxation. Hillel introduced me to Rabbi Susan Schein who inspires me every single day both religiously and in life. She told me that religion can help us overcome challenges like the stresses of college or being away from home.
Having Rosh Hashanah day service address the 3 areas of my life that I was needing addressed was amazing. Red moon. Sunsets. Clouds. Waiting for meteors and not seeing them, but as my eyes adjusted, seeing so many, many stars. Babies. Centered, connected, seens.
I have had moments of total, humble gratitude - mostly when alone, on my bicycle, far away from home. "there is so much magnificence" plays in my head.
I don't think of myself as a particularly spiritual person - it bugs me when my rabbi tries to get us to connect to the 'Source of all Life" or some such. The closest I might get is an appreciation of nature: sunsets, stars, the mountains. For a particular occasion I might say New Year's Eve in Panama, with the ocean waves, the stars, and people all up and down the beach sending luminaria into the night sky.
As I started preparing for retirement this year, I really took a step back to appreciate how great my life has been... I am looking forward to enjoying my new freedom and hope to have a long time to enjoy it and be in good health.... I'm in a very space and enjoying life to the fullest and very grateful to have Tricia at my side....
Na nigga lol
No. I continue to wake up in the middle of the night, panicking, with unbidden thoughts of the inevitability of death. The images are always of deep space, specks of stars, nothingness. A weight. I feel my heart race, do the math-- I'm 38. Youngish. Reasonably healthy. Statistically, I'm midlife. I may have 4 more decade in me. That thought both soothes, and terrifies. 40 more years of this? Not like this. They can't all be like this. Something has to change. We get one life, and this is it. I'm halfway through it. Is this really how I want to spend what little time I have? Am I helping anyone? Doing a single thing to be proud of? Why do I choose to spend whatever time I can alone? I don't have the comfort of a spirituality, of faith. All I have are questions, and a reticence to change.
The closest I came to a spiritual experience was participating in Sunday Assembly ( a Godless congregation) in London, several times. Sunday Assembly is an atheist Sunday gathering that incorporates the best of church/temple (singing, doing good, community). Community, and singing in community, is the closest thing I understand to spirituality. This has affected me by leaving a lasting sense that communion with others should be a priority - it's about living intentionally, and I notice that I think in these terms more and more.
No. Maybe this year!
I have become more aware of the iniquities regarding my faith as seen by others. I have read more about the Holocaust and I am now very fascinated by how the early Christians demonized yet benefitted by the Jews. Alon Contino wrote an important book about anti-Semitism that moved me to tears. Do I believe in GOD? I believe in morality and goodness - I do not think these are GOD given. I do not think peace is a natural state for humans. I think we came from the cosmos and I am not sure if that - in hindsight - was such a bright idea. I don't think we are alone in the heavens but I cannot figure out why we seem to be isolated and so sure we have other places to go if this does't work out. I am not sure this was meant to work out. But I know we have no place right now to go - Elon Musk or not. Sometimes I wonder if we are a game someone is playing and the ones played electronically are offering choices or proving we just as vile as we appear. All of this is spiritually disturbing. All of it may be a passtime. Or a test.
I am finding strength through my faith, my spirituality. I pray as a means of meditation, which is calming my anxiety and reinforcing my belief that Gd will do what is best for my son. I have been reading more Judaically inspirational stories, and trying to be mindful of putting my faith into practice every day. That isn't so much a "spiritual revelation," but it is having a profound effect on my day-to-day life, my interactions with others (especially family), and it has been key in getting my anxiety under control and keeping it there.
Not really, and that saddens me.
HT Hypnosis training opened me to see thing in a deeper way KP Again the writing workshop. day of reflection in a beautiful place with safe people allowed me to slow down and look at what my spiritual needs are. I keep running from wanting more involvement in Jewish Renewal and also wanting to get re-involved in FUCO and social justice. I trick myself into thinking it is a choice or that Howard needs to join me and then I do neither.
This summer, we went on vacation to the Poconos, to a friend's vacation home. It was remarkable to walk around at night because there were so many stars in the sky--way more than we can see anywhere else. It was just amazing, walking around with my dad, seeing all of the stars and just admiring the beauty around us. At a different point this summer, my mom, sister, and I went to see a meteor shower. We walked across the street with the dog, and just laid down on the basketball court, watching the stars and chatting quietly.
The closest to spiritual I've felt is really coming to terms with the missing and essential feeling of joy during my working hours and how much miss that feeling. I'm an art teacher and the feeling of immersing myself with the interactions with children and teachers , ideally, could involve joy and this is one of the underlying spiritually-related feelings I've had that led to wanting a job change.
Going all night out several times without incident.
I have had a lot of transformative experiences physically, which felt spiritual in terms of the impact they had on my life and mind, and I have have felt deepened in my capacity to feel and access spirituality in gentle, authentic ways through movement and meditation. I have felt more and more peaceful, centered, more authentic and true to myself, since I turned 38 than I remember being in my life previously; age has given me the capacity to stop giving a fuck where it's not required or relevant, where the people concerned don't love me or care for me. That is, profanity aside, actually really spiritual; space taken up by the chatter of other voices, needs, ideas, opinions, is opened up, and I can find and do me.
I participated in Chai Mitzvah. The process encouraged me to think about my personal Judiasm. I decided to begin attending the monthly Traditional service. I do not know a lot of the Hebrew, but I find the experience very spiritual. The Reform and Traditional services create a nice balance for me.
Can't think of any
Edie is trying meditation. She told me about Jason Stephenson on YouTube. Having a sibling express an interest was pleasant.
Not really. But I know that God is there. And God guides me in God's own way.
I find myself, more and more, questioning the basis of my spirituality and leaning more towards defining it as a fascination and appreciation of the beauty of the nature of the universe. Every time I hear someone like Neil Degrasse Tyson speak and explain the wonders of the world, I wonder if god isn't just another word for science. I have never- at least as an adult- felt there was a dude in the sky keeping track, but I do think that if we could all understand and accept each other, regardless of how we get to a feeling of spirituality- be it through science, jesus, hashem, Buddha, Allah, etc.- if we could really work through it and achieve a peaceful coexistence, that would bring us to paradise- because a world without war- war that is generally committed using religion as an excuse- that peaceful world would be a paradise. So we might not need god after all. My athiest husband is adjusting to life in America and joining my family in our progressive Jewish traditions. he's finding it challenigng to understand that so many in our circle dont necessarily believe in god and yet we attend services and say prayers. For me it's about community- and god is another word for science and peace.
I spent time with and watched my grandmother die within 4 months of being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. It was one of the most painful and heart-crushing things I have ever experienced, but it was an important life lesson too. I realized I can handle being around dying people. Probably actually pretty good at it. And it has changed the way I want to move forward with my career. I miss my grandmother terribly, but in her last months of love and friendship, she helped me to realize that I could be the calm in the chaos. And she helped me not be so afraid of dying.
I've learn to listen and to watch for signs. I believe that spirit send you messages but you just have to be willing to make yourself open enough to receive them. My signs come in the form of songs. The songs that have meaning to me, that I hear randomly out in public or see the name of, that tells me that my spirit guides are there and I need to pay attention....or that I am doing the right thing, or on the right path.
I connect with my spirit all the time. I am not coming up with a particular event... When I feel compassion, deep love, joy, it's all spiritual. I've been mourning the loss of Wayne Dyer, remembering, acknowledging his lessons, communicating with the many who love him and are grateful for his lessons, his love here. Tonight in a meditation by Jennifer McClean of clearing energy and surrounding yourself in love and light and healing, I felt knew Wayne Dyer's "Namaste" then understanding that it's Wayne Dyer Buddha Rumi Confucious Jesus every enlightened being and my self... all of us as one. I had a Namaste to and from my highest self. I would say I found my perfect meditation for this time... I am sick with a cough for the last 3 weeks. Oy.
I don't think I have. :( I haven't spent much time praying in the past year that wasn't angry-prayer, nor have I spent much time in nature, or enjoyed any gorgeous works of art or spent much of any time in the grand outdoors. Sometimes, watching my baby niece sleep or explore the world around her or interact with other people feels a tiny bit spiritual.
Spirituality is everywhere around me. It has been especially strong this past year. Or perhaps I feel more in tune with it. I reflect constantly and find it easier to focus and move forward in day to day activities and work.
I don't know whether it is particularly a spiritual experience but whilst on Sweden I was overwhelmed by the huge realisation of the vastness of the earth which we inhabit. Just how different parts of it are and yet how it all connects and works in unity
Unfortunately not this year
I can't say that I've had any spiritual experiences -whether artistic, cultural or in any other form - and that's a shame. When I was young I could walk in the woods or look at the clouds and find amazing peace. I could lose myself in drawing a picture or creating in clay. It's way past time to slow down and allow myself those experiences again.
I have had confirmation through acts of faith in believing in myself, believing in good, and having positive experiences when intentionally imagining, planning for and expecting it from the day, the moment, the hour, the task at hand. Even when I was finding it hard to believe in goodness triumphing over the decrepit. I have found that forgiving myself and others for shortcomings, wishing the best for me and for my enemies, yet not giving in to fear despite my lack of faith, makes the difference between me being victimized or the victor. (and not the victor in the sense of hurting others or having revenge, but the victor in the sense that justice overcomes injustice in the end.) I learned this year that the dead can indeed be present with you in a moment and aid you. You can ask for confirmation of how thought impacts your environment and receive such confirmation in the most surprising ways. Intentions make a difference. Your intentions matter. Your belief matters, my beliefs matter.
I visited Germany this summer, and upon landing and walking through the airport and then sitting alone on a beautiful, comfortable train surrounded by German businessnessmen, I was struck by how free I was and how lucky I was to be a young Jewish woman traveling alone through Germany. The Holocaust was not so long ago, and if my family story had been different, I may not have been there this summer. I may not have been alive at all. The image of the train car packed with people on their way to concentration camps is a strong one, and here I was taking a very different sort of train ride. I've never experienced trauma or pain or discrimination for being Jewish, but it really could change at any moment. Antisemitism is real and ongoing. But this summer in Germany, I've never felt more grateful to be both Jewish and free.
I've had a few - Glenn and I have laughed our asses off together - my lord, when he gets going, it's amazing. I went to Katie Down's sound bath and that was incredible to release in sound and let it wash over and through me. I did this death meditation with Koshin from Zen Center for Contemplative Care where I was partnered with Shir Yaakov on Tisha b'av - was amazing to step into empathy and consider both of our deaths looking deeply into each other's eyes. I tried to step out of my ego at M's baby naming and at E's birth gathering...E's was more successful- M's I broke down crying. I did this incredible women's writing seminar that Elana Bell held and wrote like I haven't written before but more than that, participated in physical exercises that didn't just challenge my comfort level being in my body, but actually allowed me to speak out, birth my desire and say: "Why Not Me?" in a way that embraced, why not? could be possible... I spoke with dad about his death and their wills and powers of attorney and heard him say to me that "I'm not afraid of death. I've thought about it. I'm afraid of being incapacitated." I've held my mother's hand, witnessed her laughing and coming alive, and also heard her that she's afraid to go in a nursing home and really doesn't want to. I have cried inconsolably about my parents deterioration, discussing their death and facing mortality. All this was instigated by reading Atul Gawande's Being Mortal, recommended by Amichai. I blew shofar and was surrounded, motivated and broken down by the calls and cries shofars blown by the other people who blew with me.
The powerful and ancient voice that has always led me and helped me keep my own council is again finding its strength. To me, listening to this voice is as powerful an indication of faith as I have. For too long, my world has been too rowdy for me to hear and, importantly, listen to that voice. But these days I've been practicing slowing down, honoring silence, and she has returned. And though I may be out of practice and can't fully translate all that she tells me as I once did, I'm shrugging off enough external detrius to believe I'll again be fluent in her language.
Nothing profound, but I'm building a steady daily meditation practice where I sit in silence, together with my boyfriend, first thing in the morning before the daily noise begins. It's a lovely and very peaceful and intimate moment, sharing a moment of silence together. It helps to keep me grounded and it makes me feel close to my boyfriend without having to use words or gestures to express it. Just sitting together in silence is a spiritual practice.
It's been quite the year. I decided to disaffiliate with Mormonism, though I haven't officially removed my name from the records yet. I am still investigating atheism and agnosticism and seeing what rings truest to my soul and allows me to have the hope I need to live happily.
Heeding the signs of Hashem guiding my husband to go back to work in his first career and to leave his 2nd career which he loves except the early mornings.
This year I have done more meditation and practicing of gratitude . I try to help my friends and family embrace this as well, letting them know how much it has helped me. I am in a happy state and most of that is because I remind myself that I have so much to be thankful for. My home, my children, family members, my dear and cherished friends - both old and new. I have met more wonderful people from different places, and I want to keep them near and dear to me. I have also realized that there is so much more in the world to see and that we are very very lucky to live in peace in Canada.
Hugging the Torah and carrying her through the synagogue creates an emotional and concrete connection to my ancestors over centuries, and it grounds me to my heritage and tribe. I am this. I belong here. This is in my blood and being. And I can take part and read from the Torah as I wish, wear a tallit, and be proud. I feel sad that no family is here, that I say the shheckeanu alone, without Mom's cheek to kiss or hand to hold. I miss her very much when I'm at shul. I remember when I felt ONE with Geppetto, riding thru the forest and I deeply miss this connection. And breathing air with Doll.
We opened the ark last week for Rosh Hashanah services. It was an honor, although it came to us in a rather pedestrian way. Maybe that is the key to all spiritual experiences--they might happen because of a confluence of coincidence and outside agendas (i.e. increasing family participation in shul)--but it is up to us to recognize them as opportunities to be both closer to the community AND closer to the divine.
Our Jewish wedding was very spiritual for us. When all three of us were blessed as a family by the Rabbi while all under the Tallis truly underscored the acceptance of our amazing family.
I'd like to say that there were many spiritual moments this past year. The ones that are so deeply embedded in me mostly seem to be related to Dad's illness and death. Frankly, it is getting hard to continue returning to all of that, again and again, despite the fact that it has been so central and impactful. Let me turn to something very, very different. The helicopter ride over Kauai. Twice. The first time with the Warriors, and the second time together with Marcy. It was jaw-dropping, each time. And my reactions were so unexpected and so deeply visceral. The immensity, the impossible to describe beauty, the lushness and spectrum of greens; the waterfalls, and hovering inside the volcanic cone to be literally surrounded by dozens of waterfalls; to hover within several dozen feet of walls on the Nepali coast. My tears were so sudden and unexpected, and all of it literally took my breath away. The beauty was so, so encompassing, and made the experience deeply spiritual. The first time, it was overwhelming because it was so unexpected. The second, with Marcy beside me, was perhaps even more intense, because I could share it with her.
I have had the opportunity this year to look inside myself and start to answer the question of what makes me tick, and what do I want to become. I have a yearning to discover my religious faith, and dive deep into that. I have hiked in the red rock mountains which I believe is spiritual ground. I am involved in meditation and learning how to paint and express myself in a different medium. It is some of the most important steps I am taking and a perfect time
I would say the deepest spiritual experience was sitting at my husband's side while he was supposed to be dying.
My daily devotions have challenged me, in many areas. I have prayed to see things differently... have the eyes of the Lord and see things as He does. A more discerning heart and act according. We are on a course of what the scriptures have foretold. What a great time to live and be a witness to such a time as this.
My treehouse perch in Laos. Seeing the sunrise and set over the rainforest on the other side of the world was a shock. The fog, the trees, the crazy animals and plants. Waking up to gibbon calls. It was a Mah Rabu moment, where you can't help but think there is something greater than us that can create such amazing scenery and life.
Sex with my best friend. Who knew? .... still don't know what to do with it.
To be honest, this hasn't been an especially spiritual feeling year this year. Although my spirituality is very important to me, my exhaustion, busy schedule, and stress have led me to feel disconnected from my community and from G-d. But I have had small moments of prayer, reflection, meditation and connectedness that have continued to tug me toward spiritual life. I know I need it, and I know its still important to me. I'm hoping to make more time in the coming year to invest in this part of my life, and to be more centered on what's important.
I loved Budva, the people were so friendly and talkatşbe, this made me realize how much I love ex-yugoslav people. Also, I actually realized that we shape out future, every thought we have creates our lived. And I have a problem- I always think tooo much tooo much logic is a barrier for me, I should think less and feel more. I have become a bit more free and courageous, especially towards my family. Theres still a bit more to go though...
I've just started meditating, and I think it's going to greatly improve my mental health. I see it as more of an internal process, and not particularly spiritual (for me), but I do think having more mindfulness will allow me to connect more with the world around me, with reality, with the natural world, which is about as spiritual as I get.
Yes and often. Life on an island allows me to practice gratitude regularly and give thanks for the beauty around me. I meditate and have community and connection. That is spiritual in itself
No. Sometimes I feel like the gym is my sanctuary, a place I can go to deal with my anxiety, my sadness, my anger. It allows me to work them out and helps me come to terms with how I'm feeling.
I have absolutely had many spiritual experiences. There was this one time I was running in the rain. I had never really experienced that before. And it wasn't some light trickle either. This was a torrential downpour that had me soaked. I was ecstatic. There was that one time when I was running 11 miles, and at about the 4 miles mark, I felt one with everything. There were many nights where I was lying in my bed post breakup and just felt a presence and gratitude for something greater than me. Injuring my foot was a sort of spiritual experience because it brought me back to Source. It made me see the that I was neglecting the spiritual part of myself. There are too many synchronicity type of moments that I can't even count them. This whole year has been about spiritual growth.
Nothing really jumps to mind except I suppose giving birth. It was so visceral and grounded and I felt so incredibly powerful, like I never had before. In awe and jubilant. It was beyond the scope of words to describe.
I don't recall a particular spiritual experience from this past year. I find I am more spiritual in general, but definitely not religious.
Two experiences come to mind: one encouraging and one which was more somber. The former was an encounter with Unitarians, and the latter was being on a previously unknown end of attempted proselytizing. The Unitarian exposure I experienced was a regular Sunday service at a church where an atheist friend of mine is a leader teaching sex ed. The hymns were of the typical protestant cadence I had known all too familiarly. The lyrics, however, were more reminiscent of the Jeffersonian Bible than the typical dogma-and-doom liturgical focus you may expect from the Judeo-Christian heritage religions. They were humanist songs. Two members-apparently good friends-played a song about the bittersweet character of loss. As their voices mixed with the ukulele and guitar, I broke into quiet tears-feeling like I had glimpsed a rare purity of human connection. I frequently long for this unity. The proselytizing was unusual to me because during my youth I was the one performing it, and in young adulthood I find myself the object of it. The first encounter was a pair of aging baptist ministers who asked me two questions: "If you were to die right now ("right now"-echoed the second), are you certain you would go to heaven?" "If you had to say one thing to God to convince him that you deserved entry into heaven, what would it be?" They didn't care for either of my answers. I didn't care for their scare tactics. The second encounter was a salesman/student who was raising money for some high school or college program by selling books. This young man asked me some apocalyptic questions of a Christian nature, trying to latch onto whatever latent fear of the unknown may be exploited into a book sale. His book had an american flag, the statue of liberty and the word "controversy" on it. In it was a "history" of the world which led to the inevitable conclusion that we live in the end times, and that America is unquestionably the chosen nation of God. After sharing some thoughts on my proselytizing past, and exposure to other dogma-and-doom traditions of foreign thought, he asked me if I believed in the second coming of Christ (complete with some minor prophet's paraphrased prophesy). My fear of publicly renouncing my religion-and solidifying a position in hell-was nearly crippling. I don't believe that everything in the bible is true as written. I also used to pray to Jesus with sincerity and once hoped to win souls into the kingdom of heaven. I don't know how to feel. Am I losing myself or growing into a new self if I am comfortable with the idea that there is not a religion which makes sense to me? I have felt this way for some years, but have not often been required to confront it directly. I want to spread and feel "God's love" in everyone around me. And I want to murder the idea that we should live solely with the afterlife in mind.
Well, I joined a church. It feels good to be a part of a community. This church is very open to expressing doubt and talking about what it means if things didn't happen literally the way they are described in the Bible.
My life seems to be on autopilot and I'm not really experiencing anything of any substance.
We made the decision to rejoin the Catholic church—or as I like to call it, the Church of Father Tom. He is AMAZING and a huge part of the reason that I've been enjoying mass. I think putting ourselves back out there and joining a community (while a struggle at times) will be a good thing for us.
I am just gonna say no.
I've had the experience of feeling that the Divine is completely uninterested in me and my concerns...does that count? Still trying to bounce back from that one...
I have been dealing with short depressive episodes. Because of this, I have sought refuge in my spiritual practice and have turned to various spiritual teachings to soothe my sadness and loneliness. Today I feel well, this week I've felt well. And in part, receiving last year's responses helped me get out of that negative mindset that had gripped me. Or that I was holding on to, because as I learned, non-resistance was the solution. Not resisting things as they were. My clinging to the ideal made all the suffering all along. And this I learned. I have also been attending the temple more regularly and I'm finally attempting to rebuild my meditation practice.
No. I am still adrift, in spite of having the same realization the last time I tried to answer this question.
I had an amazing experience during the first full moon in July (there were two this year, a blue moon!) I was waiting for the moon to appear in the night sky above the trees in Vermont, and I was sitting in the hot tub waiting for it. I knew it was coming so I let myself enjoy the waiting process, dancing and feeling my skin in the warm breeze and flirting with the moon. I gazed over my shoulder for a glimpse of it. When it finally appeared over the trees this supreme feeling of love and satisfaction and well-being flooded me. It was like seeing the face of my beloved. I've tried to carry this "dancing through the waiting" feeling into the other aspects of my life. It was a huge epiphany for me.
Joining a new parish has been the best spiritual experience to me. I am happy to have found a new community of people who are loving and accepting. Also waking up earlier in the morning to watch the sun rise has given me comfort to know that a new day always begins.
I began to pray on the beach, to meditate in the mornings after I bring my children to school - but before I go to work. The quiet and peaceful beach, so few people there, the sun crawls in the sky, and I began to think about the sparkling line that the sun draws on the horizon directly to me. If I move, it moves. But I realized the whole sea must be sparkling like that, every bit of it, and I can only see a tiny slice of it from where I stand. The whole earth is glimmering with the glory of the sunrise and a new day waking and the experience for me is just a fraction. Is this God's glory upon the earth -- it is everywhere, but we can only wrap our minds around a bit of the experience at any moment. Gorgeous. Amazing.
I have felt, off and on, as thought my mother was directing my life in positive ways, even though she has been dead for 3 years. So many things have happened synchronistically that it doesn't feel like coincidence. I am grateful, whatever the cause, for the amazing events in my life.
Hard to find one...maybe being at services one of the few times we attended and realizing that sometimes, things are bigger than myself. I need a chance to step aside and relax, breathe, and look at the bigger picture
After Steven's passing, I have become more mindful, considering and consulting Buddhist practices.
Sitting with Bob's mother through the last night's of her life, while she was restless and weak, but able to talk and connect, was tender and brought me very close to the mystery of birth and death. I am so honored every time I sit with someone near birth or near death and feel the best in humans and the depth of mystery in the universe at those times.
Meditation group is helping me To be with how I am feeling. I didn't realize...I was trying so hard to be grateful that I wasn't allowing myself to be sad. Sometimes I am sad, sometimes things suck. It's okay to be with that feeling.
Question 5: Have you had any particularly spiritual experiences this past year? How has this experience affected you? "Spiritual" can be broadly defined to include secular spiritual experiences: artistic, cultural, and so forth. spir·it·u·al ˈspiriCH(əw)əl/ adjective 1. of, relating to, or affecting the human spirit or soul as opposed to material or physical things. Spiritual refers to anything that has to do with the element of spirit: “animating or vital principle in man (and animals); that which gives life to the physical organism”- OED. Therefore, by extension, a “spiritual experience,” is a trial or interaction of metaphysical life. When the phrase “spiritual experience” is used in everyday lexicon it is usually associated with religion. Yet spiritual encompasses all profound and powerful experiences whether human or divine. I have found that the most significant “spiritual” experiences in my life have been through simple human connection rather than any grand divine intervention. In the last year, the bulk of the precious free time I have between school and crew has been devoted to the St. Louis Project. I hesitate to write about this program because I am aware that a lots of students write about this experience. However, I feel that reflecting on the St. Louis Project is necessary, and anyone who has been will understand where I am coming from. With the paranoia of falling prey to cliché, I will share one of my personal experiences, and hope to breathe some new life into the topic. I had the pleasure to meet a man named John. John was friends with another homeless man who is well known by members of the project, and he was initially hesitant to talk to any of us. However, through the simple ministry of presence, John slowly opened up. With calm articulation, John narrated the circumstances that led to his homeless. John was born in St. Louis, and lived there for the better part of his childhood until moving to Boston. John’s struggles began ab ovo; he born with serious heart disease and would need significant surgery soon after conception. John’s birthparents decided that it would be easier to give their child up for adoption, than to deal with the costs and struggles of surgery. Without getting the necessary surgery, John was put up for adoption and lived in foster homes in St. Louis. Not only did every adoption center and foster home ignore treating John’s serious heart condition, but they did not even have the minimum decency to tell him that he has such health concerns. John did not elaborate into his life in foster care, but it was clear this was a dark period of his life. Still not knowing that he had a heart condition, John maxed out on his time in foster-care, and with little options became homeless. John is now in his late 40s still homeless, and did not find out that he had a life threatening condition until 2008. Last August, John finally had open heart surgery. Even after having a 6 hour surgery on his heart, John spent only a few weeks in the hospital before returning to the streets. Despite John’s situation, he was friendly and well spoken, and did not seem perturbed by the gravity of his circumstances. He would rather talk about the Red Sox and Patriots, and current Boston affairs; rather than explaining the hardships he faces every day. John’s story is a real and tangible account of the unfair circumstances of how many people in our communities become homeless. There is a commonly held belief in our society that homeless people are in the situation they are in, because of their actions and choices alone. This creates hateful stereotypes that homeless people are genially all drug addicts, alcoholics, thieves, and criminals. Although there are drugs, alcohol, and violence problems in homeless communities there are these problems in people in all walks of life. This is certainly not a reflection solely on the homeless community. There are flawed stereotypes which associate negative traits with all homeless people based on the actions of individuals in the community. These negative connotations are used as devices to dehumanize homeless people as lesser because they have chosen their situations and therefore are ostracized from the rest of society. It is not violence and addiction that causes homelessness, but a resultant of marginalized people who use these means as a last resort for survival. Furthermore the economic structure of our country allows homelessness to prey on lower-income workers and families because minimum wage alone puts you below the poverty line. People working minimum wage barley can survive alone, let alone providing for a family, causing mass suffering and deficiency in opportunity. Based on these economic conditions, people who suffer from mental illness, abuse, and other unforeseen misfortunes, become not only vulnerable to homelessness, but also unable to get back on their feet once homeless. John’s story is frightening in that it could literally happen to anyone. Based on fate he became homeless from birth, and he had no control over the trajectory of his life. The point of relating my experience with John is not to suggest anything to deep or groundbreaking. I am not going to tell you that this moment made me realize how lucky I am because that’s the farthest thing from the point. Or that through the St. Louis Project I have found some sort of solution to homelessness, because I have not. The real importance of this reflection is two appeals to reality. First off, understanding, through John’s story, how vulnerable all people are to homelessness and the misconceptions that surround this conditions is a clear testament to our preconceived notions of all people; if people realize how little they now about other peoples situation then maybe they will be slower to judge them. Secondly, I would like to advocate for the importance of human interaction and the results of genuine conversation unbounded from technological-aides.
Honestly...walking in my first Black Lives Matter protest after the non-indictment of Darren Wilson for the murder of Michael Brown. I felt as though I were praying with my protest, and bringing the spirit of my ancestors & history & tradition & faith with me.
i have many -my experiende in edmonton at my training was particularly meaningful -the loss and finding of the ring, the 2 airport helpers....and the learning
If "spiritual" can include artistic/cultural, I must say that the event of the year for me was appearing in A.R. Gurney's "Love Letters" with my friend Mark Cole, professor emeritus of theater at SUNY Oswego. I've been acting for more than 55 years, and this is the first time I've felt I entirely inhabited a role: I wasn't representing Melissa, I was Melissa. Every single rehearsal and performance left me in tears. It was a powerful, thrilling experience.
I am as confused this year as last. I try to find gratitude and intention, learning to breath and just be in the quiet moments, not needing any stimuli. This is difficult. I don't feel spiritual, and while I appreciate and am thankful for the life I have been given, believe that there is some sort of divine justice, I can't conceive of an all knowing force that knows what every molecule and atom is doing or is controlled at all instances of time. I can believe that there are physical laws of nature like gravity, but not that there is conscientiousness.
Well not so much just a mystical series of events that have open opportunities.
I think having to say goodbye to my cat that I had for 19 years was oddly spiritual. She was a huge part of my life and I had to sort of come to terms with the reality that as much as we love animals, they just don't live as long as we do, and it's so hard to celebrate a life well lived when you're just going to miss someone so much. My heart was broken. I hesitated to get more cats, but the only thing worse than saying goodbye is knowing that other animals are suffering in shelters with nobody to take care of them or make sure THEY get the chance to live a good life. So I adopted 2 more cats very shortly after Molly died, and I'm so glad I did.
I remember how exciting it was last year when the Black Lives Matter movement was emerging. It felt like the Advent of something, for real, like something was being born and we couldn't know what it was going to be in advance. I would like to be in touch with that again this year.
Yea, i'd go back to the whole me traveling point. It made me think a bout how much of the world there is to see and how badly i want to see every bit of it. It made me rethink how i want to live my life, do i want to be a workaholic for ever... or do i want to enjoy this amazing planet for all that it's worth... it's the latter.
Nothing this year strikes me in particular. However, this morning, as I walked along the shore near my home, I saw many migratory birds, swimming away, making their little pips and squeaks as they dunked their heads into the water, searching for food. It amazes me when I think of their long journey. Oh, now I know. I've lived in the SF Bay Area my whole life. Heard about the Marin Headlands a zillion times. One day, spur of the moment, decided to go. What an awesome sight! I was back in a few weeks, still amazed by the beauty. The SF skyline faded in and out of view, as the wind and fog shifted. It was ephemeral.
As I grow, I find myself feeling less and less connected to the religion of my childhood and adolescence. The closest I get to feeling like I used to during worship is when I'm somewhere that takes my breath away, either via scenery or experience. This year it was Iceland. I kept catching myself laughing and smiling like a fool as I saw parts of this amazing piece of earth, because I just couldn't believe that I was actually there. I kept catching myself with my jaw figuratively (and sometimes literally) hanging open with the beauty and desolation of everything around me. The world is so big and so varied, and the more of it I see, the more I really understand how precious it is.
This year has not been one for the spiritual. I have been focused on work, abandoning myself. It's not ideal, but I didn't feel as though I had much choice. I do see some light on the horizon, I see that changing. Let's just hope I am right.
Many things I believed evaporated or exploded this year. I guess thae simple fact that I have lived through that is a discovery of sorts. Broken hearts still serve. they beat, and life goes on- hardly the same, but it is still something.I suppose now I need to move from just continuing to living and thriving. Not sure how that will happen.
Yoga has been the closest thing to a spiritual experience that I've found in my entire life, and starting it just a little over a year ago was one of the best things I've ever done for myself. On some days in savasana, I realize in the middle of it that, even just for a few seconds, I was somewhere out of my own head. Most days I'm so fully in my head, but there are some special days lying there where I find that I can't quite remember the last few seconds or minute or whatever it's been, that I may have been perfectly, blissfully empty in those rare moments. Another strangely spiritual experience happened recently in my living room. It seems like nothing special, which I quickly understood it to be when I tried to explain it to Stacey a few days later. That night, she was on the couch on her computer, and we had just turned on Friends. I had just made tea, and I must've taken no more than two sips, which I've learned is about the maximum amount of tea I can drink before I pass straight out. That shit might as well be a sedative. I propped a pillow up on the floor against the couch, and laid on my back on the rug, my head up against this pillow, and everything about my body was just positioned so perfectly. I'd never felt so safe or so comfortable. That bony area just below my lower back was perfectly flat on the ground and it felt like space was just opening up there and warmth was able to creep into my bones and muscles. I felt tired and didn't try to fight falling asleep. I didn't fully fall asleep, but I realized when I did wake back up that I'd been in the most peaceful, calm and happy state that I'd felt in months or years or maybe ever in those few minutes. It was almost out of body. I was freed from my head for just a few minutes. I tried to recreate it a couple nights later but it didn't work. Some things are perfect and contained in their own moment, and they just can't be made to happen again. But maybe that's why they're so special.
No, not really.
Jakob, Jakob, Jakob. Feeling him move, hearing his heartbeat, giving birth, giving him his name, feeding him from my own body, seeing him develop and knowing there is a spark of Hashem in him. Especially at the naming ceremony. I was fidgeting with the computer on the windowsill so that Clay, skyping in, could see what was going on...and when I turned around, everyone had raised my dad's tallit into the air for a chuppah above us and was singing L'cha dodi netze chasade. I teared up, having closed the circle (with Clay) and bringing Jakob into that welcoming circle of love. Hearing Jürgen wish for his grandchild that he never have occasion to think he is alone or no one will help him - I don't think of Jürgen as a very emotional type, and seeing that side of him really touched me. And seeing my parents holding their very first grandbaby. Plus Zach. He's been adorable.
Been close to God and felt good about it.
I've looked at the world, religion, politics etc and feel that religion is taking a lower priority in my life. Am I becoming more ego-centric, more loving? I want to believe there is more, I do believe. I think that organised religions often do more harm than good and a different source of how we view the world is needed. A lack of religion is also not the solution.
This year my son was baptized. We are an interfaith family and this tradition was important to my husband. I don't personally have a spiritual connection with this but for him it was significant. I have been nervous about raising my son interfaith because in the past my I have felt like participating in Christian traditions is a threat to my Jewish identity. I am happy to be able to say that this is changing.
Eeesh, I don't think I have. How awful! I haven't done much cultural stuff this year for various reasons, and I haven't really been to church... I feel very disappointed with myself...
I think the closest thing to spiritual I can think of happened when I was snorkeling in Key West. My wife and I had planned this trip with my parents and her parents, and it happen to fall at a very hectic time in our lives. I kind of had to "psych" myself into relaxing during most of our trip. One day my father and I went snorkeling out by some reefs. There was a point in time when I literally just felt myself completely submit to the lull of the waves, and I relaxed and floated while listening to the water around me and my breath. It was a very "zen-like" moment to me, and one of the highlights of the trip.
I attended 2 different past life regression workshops and experienced some deep healing.
Possibly not quite answering the question, but cycling has given this little family a huge amount of happiness this year, ranging from Jasper learning to ride his pedal bicycle, Gareth qualifying for the amateur road cycling championships and then watching lots of cycling in person (Alex Dowsett's perfect hour, Tour de France final stage and the Tour of Britain final stage in London from the NFTO team car) and on tv. Amazing.
Sadly my answer to this question is no. I will take the question as a call to action to try to put myself into more environments where I can have a particularly spiritual experience in the coming year
I'm always trying to be present in God's light. I can be so blind to what is really in front of me. It's a constant challenge but I know it's something I will work at for the rest of my life. I hope that my trust and love for God transpires into my daughter.
I've been thinking a lot about prayer - thinking that I need to dive in and really pray, and also that I need help and would like people to pray for me. Realizing that that idea seems foreign and not-Jewish, and trying to work through it. I asked two friends, separately, if they would pray for me; I was surprised when the each said they already did.
Have grown more intimate in my walk with my Higher Power. God continues to guide me.
Every day looking at the sky, the light and dark of the hills,
Being in 12 Step programs: going to meetings and sponsoring others; believing that everything is God. Being grateful throughout each day for big and small things. So, no not one particular spiritual experience. God is everything or God is nothing --- I choose everything.
I went to Burning Man for the first time and was shown how loving people can be, when they want to be that way. The experience confirmed what I already knew, but it was nice to be surrounded by people with a common, positive purpose, if only for a week.
Yes. I felt awakened and connected when I finally started doing work that I love...creative, soul-feeding work.
My sister-in law Neely Snyder was killed in a car accident. During the mourning period I saw how strong love of family is and awed at the response of the community that came together to help josh and the girls. The signing and chanting moved me and made me feel like I was a part of the community. Also at the beach bobbing in the ocean and feeling weightless and like for once I had no troubles
SAying my prayers each morning as I walk my dogs. The beauty of the world is often overwhelming and brings me back into a grateful state of mind. And, of course, whenever I see dolphins.
Yes. After losing L, the birds became my connection to her. I imagined them carrying her to the great beyond. It seemed then (and sometimes still does) that they ferried messages between us, showing up with incredible timing to remind me of her love. Is believing that birds connect me to my child any stranger than believing in a virgin birth or a god with an elephant's head? I think people should believe anything that helps them heal and be at peace in the world, as long as it doesn't hurt others.
I stopped covering my hair this year, mostly because my marriage was falling apart, I was seeing other people, and I didn't feel that it was an authentic representation of where I was in my life. I miss covering, but I feel more authentically me with my hair revealed right now.
Being able to dance again has been an artistic spiritual experience. Not just classes but the Luna Troop I was able to dance with after my divorce. I feel like I am leaping higher than I actually do, I am nowhere near professional amateur level but enjoy doing it and I enjoy dancing with the people in Luna as well. I wouldn't trade it for a million dollars.
This has definitely been a spiritual year! I moved to San Francisco and being by the water has brought a lot of improvement to my spiritual health and well being. I worked out for half the year and am just about to take up yoga. I find myself blessed every time i see the beach and ocean. I've been exploring different Jewish experiences for Shabbat. I feel more connected to myself than I've been in a long time.
The only spiritual experiences I can think of would be my Aunt, who is now deceased coming to me in my dreams and thanking me for trying to help her daughter, my cousin and to guide her and be there for her. Very emotional, even when I think about it now.
Just little signs - every now and then. When God shows that he is still out there and caring.
Seeing how cell membranes work and learning in-depth about embryonic development. I know the science behind it, and that these intricate processes are designed by evolution, but I have never felt a deeper sense of connection to the larger world, and magic through the rigorous study of nature.
Benching gomel - saying the prayer after a life threatening event - upon returning to my Torah class after my cancer surgery. I'm not always the most observant Jew or believe in every prayer but every once in a while there is a perfect prayer for the right moment said with the support of the right people.
I got engaged this year. That changed my whole life. I no longer see myself as just an individual. I'm part of a team. :)
hmm - this is hard. It actually might be around my back. I have injured it and haven't been able to workout in the same way for 6 months. This has been challenging nd has left me depressed at times. However, I have been using practices about targeting my nervous system and am able to ride this major set back as well. Is that spiritual - not sure, but it is something I have had to weather and to me - that is weirdly spiritual
I don't know if it was spiritual, I have days where I feel super connected to God and days where I don't. I am trying to gain a strong connection again.
When I was at Electric Forest music fest this year I had a profound moment while at the Detroit techno night at the Tripolee stage when I stopped to take in the scene from afar. I saw everyone moving together in that field on that warm, beautiful summer night. Many barefoot; most barely clothed; all in the zone, and dancing together at the height of enjoyment (and -I realized- human experience. Existence, even). That was when I had my realization about how tribal we all are and how we're just seeking out acceptance and togetherness. (Love).
On 09/15/15 Pastor Jacky came to my church. On this day God spoke to me thru her. God told me that he has my kids. She told me that the mountains are moving, the mountains are moving!! I never ask for things for my self. I am always asking God for things for other people. And for this reason HE is give me some thing special. She prayed for the pain I was having in my knees. I did not tell her I had pains but she knew it already. This was very very special for me because every thing she said to me was true. The only thing I am not sure about is the mountain. I don't know what that mountain is. I know I will only find out in payer. Still I praise God for his never ending love , kindness and faithfulness toward all of us.
I started running this year-- seriously running. It hasn't been easy or dreamlike. It's a lot of hard work and my body resists it. But it's been incredible to see myself push beyond what I thought I was capable of, to nudge the line of limitation a little bit back, and then a little farther back, and so on. I'm planning on a half marathon in October, and I'm ready to see what it's like to push myself through it.
A few days ago, I spent Rosh Hashanah with my sister in Brooklyn. We went to a synagogue that has services open to the community. They share a space with a church and the services were standing room only by the time we arrived. The congregation was lively, vibrant - and the service was joyous. Everyone wanted to be there. Prayers filled the room. And inclusiveness was very clear in the fiber of their service. As I watched the rabbinical intern *dancing* the Torah around the congregation rather than processing with it, I was reminded that the New Year is joyous - that the holiday is meant to be celebrated. I don't get that feeling when I attend services in the suburban Delaware synagogue. I've discovered that it is something I want in my Jewish life.
The most spiritual experience I've had this past year is singing the Sh'ma in small group where each person, at his or her own pace, uses a full breath for each word of the prayer. This creates some interesting harmonies.
I'd have to say no. I'm not remarkably spiritual any longer. I believe in God. I try to live a good life. But by and large nothing has moved me spiritually. If anything the loss of two pregnancies moved me away from my spirituality and into a more grounded realistic space than I'd ever been before. I don't think it's bad, just what is working for me now.
I didn't have any of these experiences this year but instead enjoyed a fairly steady stream of calm, creative and content days. I'll take that!
California as a place was very spiritual for me. When I landed I felt relieved and free. I love the south, but there are so many traditions and rules. California ,add me feel like I could be anyone I wanted, and it took my heart.
No. I am spiritually frustrated. While spirituality was a foundational part of my marriage, my husband has decided he is now atheist. I know it shouldnt bother me but it does. I get particularly frustrated when he rolls his eyes over my religious activities or comments, and makes fun of some of my friends' beliefs. It really hurts. I feel alone, a lot of times. And that is really not a good way for me to feel.
I was walking in the train tunnel and through the opening at the end, the mountainside was visible with the train tracks continuing through to the next tunnel. In the outside space between the tunnels, people played on the tracks. From my perspective they were like action figures in size. The mountain side was so monumentally more significant in relation to them. The outline of the exit of the tunnel I was walking through created a rectangular frame and with the next tunnel on the horizon, gave the composition of the scene between them depth and contrast. I can see it so clear in my imagination still
Visiting many museums, historical landmarks and literature related places throughout Europe was one of the most significant experiences in my life. Got memories I´ll cherish for life and I´m looking forward to repeat it. Also, I finally went through my first surgery last year, a not so complex one and everything was fine, thankfully. But the days after had a special mental atmosphere and got me thinking about life, pain, helplessness and weakness of human condition, though no health issues aroused afterwards. Those days left a strong mark in my mind.
I don't know that my mind was really open to spiritual experiences this year. Everything just felt pretty muted. I feel like I had some good times at art shows, but I can't remember any specific instances. Over all, a kinda bland year probably. I suspect that some of this blandness is coming from the fact that I am exhausted right now.
Yes, I wrote a poem which moved my writing group, serious and educated critics all, to sing my praises. I felt the whole of me pelt into this one feeling of lightness and well being. I floated to the ceiling and celebrated the tops of our heads, each full of knowing and kindness.
Yoga, walking on my beach, the light in the windows in the Parame church, being connected to friends here.
I had an amazing weekend in NYC in February with my best friend from Vancouver. This was her first time in New York and the weekend was blissful. A hotel a half block from Times Square. Drinks at the revolving restaurant the first afternoon watching the sun set. Dinner at a deli with another dear friend. Wandering all over lower Manhattan on Friday. Lunch at the deli where they filmed "When Harry met Sally". Visiting the 9/11 Memorial. Staten Island Ferry as the sun was setting. Dinner at The Russian Tea Room. Saturday wandering past NBC and other areas. Then seeing Alan Cumming in Cabaret. He's amazing. It was incredible. Took a long walk through the magic of Central Park as the sun was setting. So lovely. Sunday saw us having breakfast at a hole in the wall place followed by a walk in the snow to Lincoln Centre. Hearing the opera orchestra warming up as an added bonus. Dessert and tea before seeing Helen Mirren in The Audience. As my friend said, "When she transformed from a sixty something Queen to a 25 year old girl, you could hear the audience gasp. And I knew we were a part of something magical." And being with my friend, basking in her love and laughter, was my spiritual high for the year.
Tall redwoods in California, between San Jose and Santa Cruz... so peaceful and full of soar...
Hmmmm. I wonder if I can say being horribly sleep deprived is spiritual. When Lev was 3.5-5.5 months old, he was regularly waking every 1-2 hours and I was the only person doing night duty for most of that time. I discovered why sleep deprivation is torture. It certainly made me much more appreciative of sleep, as well as how not getting sleep can affect your mood, ability to think, and general ability to function. I'm much more empathetic to people with sleep disturbances!
I visited the Brandywine River Museum in June, the home of the Wyeth collections. It was a joy to see the originals of N. C. Wyeth's illustrations for my childhood favorites like Treasure Island and Kidnapped! I saw many pictures I recognized and enjoyed the experience of getting to see the details and power that are lost in reproduction. But I was moved to tears and still choke up at the memory of Andrew Wyeth's portrait of Nogeeshik. It was not hung in a place of prominence, just in a row of other portraits, but the memory alone just undoes me. I do not understand why this stirs me so. The dignity, the look of patient waiting for recognition? I don't know, but it haunts me. I am dripping on my tablet.
I cried in the desert in Israel. I was mad at God. I still am in some ways. That hasn't changed, because the situation that brought it on still hasn't changed. The desert is such a powerful place for me - I never thought I liked the desert until I spent time there when I lived in Israel. Now, it is such a treasure for me, to stand or sit in the darkness, surrounded by the stars and the wind, alone with my thoughts, and with God. It's a place of great transition, of change, of growth. It's a spiritual oasis. It calls to me, like a finger beckoning me close, like a whisper tickling my ear.
I don't know if this counts as a spiritual experience as such, but rediscovering my drawing skills has been temendous fun. I'm not talking about the 'hey look, I can still draw a tree' kind of feeling, but about more or less noticing what goes on in my mind when I draw something. That shift from rationally (over) thinking to quietly expressing myself via my pen. About not really knowing what it is I'm going to draw, or what it is going to look like, but trusting something will come out and it will be good enough. It doesn't have to be art, it doesn't have to be realistic, as long as it's an expression of 'me' and I had fun making it.
Firstly, having meditation becoming an integrated practice in my life. I can't even begin to tell how much of a difference does it make to my mental make-up to be able to turn any difficult situation, calm my mind, take a deep breath and control how I react to them. Secondly, probably deciding to explore my sexuality, the boundaries of my relationship with Rahul by having our own respective experiences outside of us, and still coming out stronger as couple because of it. Finally, one thing I didn't plan but glad I did which had such a profound impact on me was of course, attending Bon Jovi's concert. He's such a master of himself on stage and in his craft and he's done it through hard work and discipline and with such strong mental make-up to be able to have such impacts on millions and millions of people around the world.
The biggest had been my awareness of self and that I am on on my own. It's note that I want to live in solitude, but I am ok
My whole being is defined and animated by the "spiritual." All of life rotates around the love of God. God has surprised me with provision this year (house and $ for house.)
The spiritual experiences I've had this year have come on erev Shabbat, quietly lighting candles alone in my room or on Shabbat mornings while baking challah, thinking, kneading, and talking with G-d. Both of those things I've not enjoyed and observed enough. In Israel, taking the space to pray before every meal, to hear my sister-in-law utter a prayer of thanks for good travel or for the rainbows after a downfall reminded me that prayer is thoughtful. Hearing the Hebrew was beautiful. Taking the time on Shabbat to pray, discuss Torah, eat thoughtfully, sleep, and shut out the technological world, was soul enlivening. As I settle into doctoral program life this year (and hopefully find a home with more robust kitchen space), I hope to observe challah baking, candle lighting, bread breaking, Shabbat observing, and prayer.
Deeper desire to get back to my roots. Being humbled to accept my dads financial help. My eyes being opened to the erroneous thinking beliefs I have been carrying. Being more concerns with keeping the shabbat and feasts. So now I just see Jeshua everywhere. The feasts are all about Him. Our fathers love and the extent He went to make a clear way for us to be with Him forever. Yom Kippur ...looking forward to it. In the meantime I'm searching for neg beliefs n replacing them with positive. Abbas belief .
Yes, more than one. The more compelling experience has been going on the entire year. My mother was born on November 11th and has been dead for seventeen years. For the past year as I check the time I discover it is 11:11. It has happened so frequently that I have kept a running list of dates and wether it is am or pm. It even happened during the women's World Cup Soccer Final, the clock was stopped for a kick or something and the board showed 11:11. Initially it felt a little creepy like she just wouldn't leave me alone, I now understand that 1111 can be a significant number in itself. I find it significant because it was my mother's birthday and just consider it a visit from her. I believe she is trying to be my guide, not sure exactly what that means but I will just go with it. Another part of my journey. My boat trip down the Canal St. Martin in Paris was extraordinary and inside the very long tunnel at the end was breathtaking. Like a light show that you really can't explain. I know there was one other "take your breath away moment" but I don't remember the specifics.
Taking that leap of faith! This year I have settled my heart to patiently await and remain open to the possibilities. As I stretched toward a new goal, I wanted so much to control the end results. This year, I have found more peace in my heart and notice that my interactions with others has profoundly improved. Not only are my relations to others better from opening my heart to be an intrument of peace, my relation with myself is improved. The wave of peace extends further and further to a larger and larger family of individuals. I have faith that my continued peaceful heart practice will reach all humankind.
For me, spiritual is more about connecting with nature, which would be nice to do more of.
Yes. Visiting Israel was a spiritual experience for me. Especially Jerusalem.
Oh. The beauty of the North Bay in CA produced so many moments of 'spirit'. I miss living there and look forward to moving back or find a part of nature in Silicon Valley area that can move my spirit.
Israel my home. Whatever happens is such immense hashgacha protis because it is in Israel. You look for lessons and therefore find lessons kind of like chassidim of yore who knew that everything was a lesson in avodos hashem. In my case it was more like life lessons that hopefully would impact my avodas Hashem. Also praying by tzaddikim. Asking them to rally to me this year. I just have to be brave and make a keli. also living with mayanoters was spiritual. I adore Malka and Dinah and learnt so much. I think it made me appreciate practical chassidus more which is something I dabble in exploring. and i'm so glad I got to go to ITALY. so much art and wonder
Again my living in China and experiencing the immensity of the Chinese history and culture has helped me put into perspective my own life. I have always been fairly easy going adapting well to changing circumstances. Somehow living in China has enhanced that characteristic in me. I feel more at peace with my life then I ever have. I miss Ann,my wife, dearly and wish she would join me but she just isn't ready yet. I talk with her daily and get back to Canada every couple of months so it's bearable but I still wish she was with me. I think if she could see and feel what I do about China she would be a much happier person.
Going to Israel on Birthright. I felt more connected to Judaism. I just wish that connection had stayed as strong in my heart after returning home.
In the broad sense that spiritual is defined as affecting the mind and soul, one spiritual experience that I had was working at Yad Vashem for a semester. It is quite a heavy burden to think about the holocaust almost every day. I can guarantee that most people don't carry this burden. It hardened me a little - thinking about the atrocities committed on my people and how we still have so far to go. But it also enlightened my Israel experience. I met people who are also affected by this daily reminder, even if differently. I met Rena, the child survivor; the two sisters from Germany; Katie, Tauvit, and Naomi who work so hard; and many others who shoulder this weight. It is inspiring, and I see the presence of g-d in every one of these people.
Waking in Chicago and suddenly feeling at one with all of it and all of it one with me.
None...this has been a year of simply trying to keep my head above water and not drown.
I found a higher power. With all that's occurred and my intro to 12-Step Program, I've learned how essential a higher power is. At first it was a disco ball and a barn...I was desperate. And that sufficed. It still does. But then I realized that the sun and moon and all that exists in between is my higher power, and this satisfies me. Now I can let go and let HP and feel comfortable with that. I love surrendering to my HP and letting something else take control of all the things I have no power over. I see outcomes far greater than anything I would have received had I not surrendered and admitted I am powerless. What comfort. I'm not weak for this. I'm strong, and I know I can't do it alone.
Oh, where to start. I really began living my spirituality this year. My prayers are coming naturally. I can't help but go to sleep and wake up in joyful gratitude. In rites of passage, I was given my adult medicine name and can now see clearly that I am not only a seer, but a speaker and a doer and that my gifts to the work include all three of these elements.
Wow, this really has not been much of a spiritual year. Not that I can recall. I'm enjoying being a mother and wife and still having lucid dreams, recording them when I can. We recently went back to church at the cathedral but nothing earth-shattering is going on. I appreciate my family more than anything and more than ever. Is just living life day by day a spiritual thing? It was supposed to be, a choice I made at the big fork in the road in my 20s. I should not be surprised that I find it spiritual today, even if it does not feel as traditionally "spiritual" as some would define it. I am participating in life, this American life if you will, and I am enjoying it.
Broadly defining "spiritual" would include the London trip: breathing and not thinking, just being. I cannot emphasize the importance of this experience enough. Life-altering. In line with the London trip are the experiences of worshiping in the London synagogue - and how similar it is to Judea Reform! - and participating in Ben Schwab's bar mitzvah, and how meaningful that was (also how similar, even though in French and with 2 siddurs - theirs and mine!). Contrast these experiences with my time on the JRC board and worship services there - and lack of community and/or of spiritual feeling. After such a long deliberation period, I think it's time to go. Though I may still attend the singing group :-)
I tried doing Mindfulness and just couldn't get into it. But I would like to figure out how to focus on what's really important.
For me, spirituality is both in the small, everyday minute details of life and in the big, once in a while events. The green buds poking up out of dirt and snow in late March as I walked to work - that is spiritual. The bluebird that I sometimes see on my walk to work - that is spiritual. The insane duststorm that covered Israel right before Rosh Hashana and came from Syria, where all the refugees are running from - that is spiritual. I feel spiritual whenever I can look beyond the present moment and see a bigger picture, a larger purpose. I feel spiritual when I manage to drag myself out of bed and pray before I start my day. I feel spiritual when I see the wrinkles on my grandparents faces and realize that they are a link to the past, and that that chain extends for hundreds and hundreds of people.
I haven't had a particularly spiritual experience this year.
Travel- makes me feel a seamless web with others of different cultures, whose languages I may not speak or understand as well as my own. Creating art~ how invigorating to do something so different from my career.
I've admitted to myself that I believe in God but don't believe in the idea of Jesus Christ as my lord and personal savior. That was a huge thing for me because I grew up as a Christian. Religion wasn't forced on me as a kid, but it was something that I chose for myself when I went to college. It's tough to reconcile because I have had what I consider to be a supernatural experience with Jesus. I was praying in church one day and I felt Jesus put his arm around me and tell me that everything will be ok. I'm still struggling to come to terms with this because I don't know what it means for my soul.
Listening to Les Miserables is always a spiritual experience. And Trainwreck was spiritual as well, oddly enough. I loved Amy Shumer turning rom-com on its head, and in particular, loved her yelling at the cheerleaders, "You're gonna lose us the right to vote!"
For some reason, I have been avoiding spiritual influences. It's no secret, they make me cry. Am I so far from myself that I can't stand to feel my feels, or is it hormonal? Perhaps the truth is somewhere in the middle. Going to the counselor makes me cry, church makes me cry and theatre makes me cry. Time to find out why?
Just a few weeks ago, I was both proud + moved to hear my daughters- both my 9 + 5 year-olds, but especially the younger of the 2- blow shofar far better than I ever have.
I watched two girls with special needs choose their own Hebrew names. They didn't know very much Hebrew, nor did they have a strong Jewish homelife. But they embraced this unique opportunity, as did their parents, and it was truly inspiring. Something so simple as a Hebrew name, bringing so much joy.
I was at The King's Singers concert and one of the pieces was truly spiritual, I cried and it was really beautiful. If I ever forget, it was "Oh my love is like a red, red rose"
When doing IUI, researched an actors name from marco polo and his name was Remy, I thought it was a sign this would work. When seeing 2 blastocytes transferred into me thinking "come to me" over and over said the shema when you both made your travel into me. Wanted you to find a place of warmth and home to settle yourself and stick. Seeing a falcon fly over when sad, reminds me of Pauline being with me - watching over me. Had a dream that death was coming soon, not to me though. That I was the sun card, creating. and am to be creating. Kept pulling "the pink card" unsure what that is - what it meant - all this happened in the early summer - I was being prepared for things Had Sandra pass away - she showed up as a black seagull cut out - rick had thrown away all of them months earlier, then moving things I found one right after she died - have it in my box - still waiting to see her in more ways. miss her desperately... my friend, guardian angel, my Sandra
I'm continuing to build my relationship with God. I go to church a lot and am trying to get involved with my church, but it also means taking the time to really, really talk to God. I have had a lot of screaming matches with God this year but I also trust Him more.
I began a yoga practice. I have felt more centered and calm since practicing regularly. I have had several experiences while meditating in savasana before yoga class. One in particular stands out: the faces of those from my past who I feel have caused me pain came into my view, then I told them "thank you for your part in my journey", then I pushed them away back out into the universe. Experiences such as this have helped me as I've healed over the past year.
I can't think of anything; although I was recently speaking to someone about spiritual experiences and how our body can help us make the right decisions for us.
I think it's been a "spiritual" experience for me to pick up the Ukulele as I have done. I always thought about playing guitar when I was a kid, and though this is obviously different, it's just weird, because it's in my grasp. I always thought playing an instrument was something I couldn't do, but that's not the case. It's about practice, and effort. And it feels good.
Being in Israel -- taking time off from any work. Rethinking my experiences this past year
yes. i had a series of moments that started when I realized I needed to stop drinking. It was in church and the pastor was speaking about staying safe in the tomb or rolling away the stone and being resurrected into a higher self. the Christ self. For me I knew that it was to stop drinking and start listening to my intuition. That sent me on a path to start AA - go to meetings, work through the steps and I've come to a new understanding of surrender and of courage and faith. And it's been really hard (mainly shaking up all my relationships) and so worth it, thus far.
I (barely) saw The Northern Lights in Iceland in March. It was breathtaking. It looks like spirits in the sky dancing. It made me so thankful for the life that I have lead up until that time. Trying to see them again is why I'm going back!
Seeing the international space station pass overhead (twice as it happens - by chance on a boat in the Grenadines, and on Christmas Eve as the Santa Tracker). And seeing Saturn and its rings through my telescope. I have also had glimpses of enlightenment, the space between the words, the state of no thoughts, of peace with myself.
I desire to lead and speak in groups. But I am held back by either over-preparing and then being brittle and wooden, or, not participating publicly. I find that in freeer groups, I spontaneously come forth with prophesy and right words/expression -- Quaker style Spirit, I suppose. But during RH service, I offered up my prayer to Her: I want to lead and speak in groups, and know not how. Please, Lady of Infinite Possibilities, I put this in Your Hands. Help me, please. Within five minutes, a space opened up in the service where words were needed, and they spontaneously came to me, as I lived into Sarah's story right before the Holy One came to her saying she would have a bio-child. I spoke and flowed, and it was needed and appropriate. I feel so blessed, and have gratitude for this path She opened for me.
Well the TLC channel and another season of Ling Island Medium leaves me a believer of Theresa Caputo! Somewhat related I get super introspective every time I watch "Who Do You Think You Are?" and the impact of family. It's pushed me to be more investigative about my own ancestry. While some of our friends are perfecting their online dating profiles, my husband and I are building our individual family trees through the ancestry.con app. Thanks Mom for your username and password.
Many... The Bible is Jumping Off It's pages into the Newspapers,as well as the manifestations The Scriptures, Maranatha!!
I signed up for the Spot The Station newsletter, which sends you notifications about when the ISS will fly over your area. The first time I saw it arc across my sky gave me this awesome feeling of pride in the human race. Coupled with following several astronauts on Twitter (many of whom take great aurora-from-space photos), that has made me feel more connected to the space program. Also, reading Seveneves.
This year I made a list of churches, and church-like organizations that I want to check out. So far we only made it to one--the Bahai temple. But I am slowly getting more interested again/more motivated to find ways to regularly reflect on my values, think about how to apply them in my life, and build a community of people who share my values.
Swimming with whale sharks in Cendrawasih Bay (West Papua) in April 2015 was an unparalleled experience. They are sea creatures of incredible grace and glide, appearing from the deep blue with their starry skin and filter-feeding mouths, seeming to not even move and yet cruising past and again disappearing, as if on a strong, silent current. To live on a planet that has so much life, mystery and beauty...
I began to really understand the power of spirituality not from traditional religion...maybe from Birthright and our traditions, or working out, or certain life cycle or seasonal events! I hope to keep exploring this spirituality and how I can create it for others in the coming year!
I've had 3 experiences so far, take all of them with a grain of salt, I don't care, I don't even think to much of them. 1- I have grown to believe that God sends me shooting star every now and then to remind me that even though I don't talk to him as much as I use to, he is watching over me and the people I love ever so dilligently. It's always reassuring, especially in times of distress. 2- A friend told me I would meet a lady that would mark me for the rest of my life and that she would have a tremendous influence over me. Another friend told me last week that he had dreamt of a girl who would change our lives... who knows... I personally think they're both lunatics. 3- A German friend told me that I am destined to sing, not to work at what I currently do. She said the only thing holding me back from becoming what I'm meant to do is the lack con confidence in myself, then she gave me a "Mondstein" (because I love the stars) and she told me that this stone would serve as the reciepient of my hope and dreams... Naturally... being the clumsy dumb dumb I am, I have already lost the stone :( Shame! It was a beautiful stone... u_u
Still searching for a church or a place of worship where I can feel a connection to the divine. I started going back to Roman Catholic church but it makes my husband uneasy. He thinks I am going to get brainwashed. It makes me sad because I feel like he doesn't really know me when he thinks that, even when I try to explain it all to him.
Two: going to the Whitney Museum of Modern Art and road tripping the Blue Ridge Parkway (first with Liz and then with Blake) were both surprisingly spiritual experiences. Last year, or even at the time of the events, I may not have defined them that way, but in hindsight I'm realizing that that's how they felt. The feelings associated with those experiences: being free and open, being challenged to think, exploring something new and exciting... Those feelings are so powerful that they felt kind of like epiphanies. I love that those experiences happened right before starting college.
There were several moments of pure connection this year. When I was traveling in Europe I was able to get up close to a few masterpieces without any distractions. I was awed by them. The smooth strokes of Vermeer paintings. The bold humanity in Rembrandt's. Quiet silence as I sat resting next to Chopin's heart in Warsaw. Cracks in Picasso's sculptures. I felt very connected to these artists in their creations and that was incredibly moving to me.
I think that being truly and utterly very alone for the first time - when I moved to Salzburg - was kind of a wakeup call. I had to deal with depression, which popped up again for the first time in a while, and the lonesomeness and fight the urge to go back the US where everything was shitty, but safely familiar. I survived.
Being with my children is always a beautiful time. I cherish each opportunity we get to be together. They lift me up and with them, I feel truly loved.
I finished a piece of art which let me feel connected with a Higher Spirit.
I wouldn't necessarily say it was spiritual, but taking the train across the U.S. yielded some really incredible moments of taking in the expansiveness of it all. It stirred something inside of me to see the mountains, the desert, even more mountains - places that are unreachable by car. Disconnecting myself from the outside world by turning my phone on airplane for those days helped me be really present in the moments and to engage with the people around me. It wasn't transformative in the way I think some of my friends expected it to be, but it felt like one very long exhale from all the difficulties I'd experienced in the first half of the year. A brush with almost unimaginable beauty has that effect.
A friend's grandmother passed away this summer. The funeral Mass was very moving in some ways, disorienting in others. The Catholic Mass has changed a fair amount since I last attended, so it was a little bizarre to think that this thing that was constant in my childhood has moved on without me. I realized I missed the fellowship, the music, the feeling of connection with something eternal that comes from being part of this ritual — something that's been in my family for longer than anyone knows. I'm not bereft enough to try to believe again, but enough to be sad about what's lost to me.
None. Usually my spiritual experiences come in the form of especially enlightening and moving musical experiences, but this past year I can't say that I've had any of those.
No particular spiritual experience this year. It was my first year out on playa where I didn't feel I had anything to leave or let go of. I felt pretty darn good about where I am in my life and all I am working on/moving toward.
I took the Sojourn Disciple training class this year, and that really opened my eyes. I already knew that making disciples was our job, but the course really showed how to do it, and more importantly, what it is and what it isn't. I've been praying for 2 people in particular that God will continue to stir them up, and that I'll be ready when the time comes.
Going to the Prado in Madrid & seeing for the first time in person some of my favorite paintings made me feel part of hundreds of years of Western civilization. I loved it.
I was introduced to Russian art and I found it dark and yet invigorating as it did not follow the path of the European art scene... it reminded me that there is so much more to our world than what we see or expect to know - even if we are the type of person to scratch the surface, we must be willing to go beyond even that if we are to understand our collective history and understand our fellow humans
Yes. I love those moments in time.
Like I explained in yesterday's question, I'm not a religious man. I don't really believe in the supernatural. The closest thing I could call "spiritual" would be when I'm doing something active in nature. The past year I did a lot of running and biking outdoors, two things I love to do and two things that help me clear my head and feel alive. I also went hiking and climbing with some college buddies I hadn't seen in years. Being in the mountains, touching the rocks, breathing the fresh air and listening to the sounds of the earth without interruption of modern technology feels about as "spiritual" as it can get. My very favorite "spiritual" thing I did just this past June was surfing. If I didn't live in a land locked state, I think I'd surf just about everyday. I started surfing about seven years ago. From the very first time I tried it, though I sucked and got my ass kicked, it gave me a feeling of peace and freedom I had never experienced before. I've tried to go at least once a year ever since. Being out in the water, sometimes alone, with the cool water, the breeze, the wildlife, the accepted risk, the sand, the crisp ocean air, nothing to hear except waves crashing, waiting for the perfect wave, then when you finally turn and paddle and catch one, the feeling of the ocean literally and emotionally moving you is one of the most exhilarating experiences ever. Knowing that I've willingly put my life in the hands of nature and survived makes me feel like I've lived a life worth saving. The ocean can do whatever it wants with me, it can crush me or it can reward me. I try to respect it and all it's qualities and maybe that's why I've only been rewarded. Sounds a bit hippy, but being one with the ocean brings me a level of happiness and a sense of being alive that nothing else can. Call that spirituality if you want to. Maybe it is. Maybe I am. One thing I do know is that I am a better person for whatever it is.
No, in fact I feel like at university the lack of religious ritual makes it more difficult to be spiritual. This is despite there being a more beautiful and accessible natural environment, which ordinarily I find makes it easier. It's made me realise that I need to put in effort to be spiritual. Perhaps I should take more solitary walks.
broadly speaking I do feel that I have become more aware and in tune with what seems at this stage an authentic me. I am stalking to entertain thoughts of backing myself first more than ever, of course its only when I regularly act upon them that I have grown. One moment that stands out was the feeling of fear and anger at the same time when confronting those beggars at the train station. After thinking long and hard about those emotions I realized that above all that my mind is just not used to sticking up or backing myself and the response was rather to fear myself into backing down. That to me felt spiritual
Honestly, I've connected with a spiritual experience at SoulCycle. It's deep, it's moving, it makes me push myself beyond belief. I've fallen in love with it. It speaks to me in a way that no other exercise does. I enter the class and am so excited to just not think about anything but finding the rhythm, listening to the music, and getting pushed to my core. This is spiritual, uplifting for me. I connect with myself and my problems and my drive more here than anywhere else. One instructor always says - "Do you want to do less, the same, or even more?" ....this hits me. I always want to do more. Never just the same. I can always be better.
I continue to reel from Dad's death. I spend some time being angry at him, thinking it was so selfish of him to die when things were headed in a way that would be difficult for him, ie retiring. Mom worked so hard for him for all those years, and just when she was supposed to get hers, he left. But then I think, well, that's crazy talk. And then sometimes I think he died because he knew we were planning to have another baby. Sometimes I think he decided to come back with us as his parents so he could experience a normal, even, dare I say it, happy childhood, as opposed to his hellish one. But then I think, well, that's crazier talk. And besides, ha! No pressure there. :) This is all to say yes, my spiritual journey continues to vex and amaze me beyond all else.
Hmm ... I definitely became more in-touch with HaShem and managed to ask for a lot more. To let go of a lot and just wait and talk to HaShem.
Some of our family times on the beach in Brazil were simply breath-taking. I don't mean the beauty of the land- and sea-scape. I mean seeing my husband and his sons playing together, in the land of their fore-people -- knowing how important this is/was to him. And I JUST discovered the humanistic Jewish group in my community, which is lovely! I took J. there for Sunday School and we both loved it. It hit so many terrific notes for me: ethics without the supernatural stuff, nice Jewish values (warmth, humor), music, a community of young people. I have decided to sign him up for the year, and will probably become a member of the "congregation." I so hope that he (and later A.) will develop a strong, positive relationship with Judaism. (Maybe I will too!)
Well... losing babies and having a baby was pretty spiritual. But mainly physical... and exhausting.
SZARVAS: Going to a camp in the middle of Eastern Europe, dancing in circles with Jews from every country - including many countries where their Jewish Identity has been stripped from them because of communism and the Holocause was extremely powerful. All of a sudden the definition of a jew completely transformed. It doesn't matter whether your Mom is Jewish or if its your dad. It doesn't matter if you believe in God or believe that the rebbe is the Moschiach or that you even believe in Jesus! A Jew is a Jew is A JEW! No one said "Well not really six million jews died - bc techinically he wasn't jewish bc etc etc. NO. If you identify as Jewish, and have family that has lived through our Jewish history then we have a shared background. Then you are my family. If you want to continue the Jewish Tradition and give back to the Jewish community in the best way you can. Then YOU are my family. EVERYONE deserves to have a place within Judaism where they feel they belong. And that will NOT negatively impact our Jewish communities. I promise. Creating a space will never lose a Jew. BUT NOT creating a space might.
I went to the zikr at The Abode of the Message on September 19th. It had been over a year since I had danced with my Sufi circle. Ron White was drumming, and in the second-to-last song, we locked eyes and shared the most intense flow of divine heart energy. It was amazing, and I'm still feeling it two weeks later.
Hm...not very spiritual, but transformative. I took up dancing last year and that makes me more focused, more accepting of who I am and what I look like, more confident. In a way, it's good for the soul, so it must be spiritual as well.
I have more and more missed my family in Brazil...
A little over a year ago, I started this social media #100happydays challenge and admittedly, at the beginning, I was a little bit skeptical to do it - finding something to be happy about for 100 days seemed hokey. But, I think that even though it was tough and some days I had to be creative, it really helped to cultivate a new framework for me and to really bolster my sense of gratitude. I inadvertently stopped the streak at day 399, but it was time, I suppose. I kept going because I could and that was great, but at the same time, it's nice to be able to refocus this new attitude and all of this gratitude. Change baby, change!
This past year may have been one of the least spiritual years I've had as a Jew. I still certainly consider myself a Jew, but I do not feel the pull of mitzvot, the draw of community at a service quite as I have in the past. I have spent a lot of time alone in the woods this year, and that is where I seem to be able to quiet down enough to find my inner voice.
I am returning to my foudations. I'm reconecting with myself. About 3 months ago a return to draw every day. I am designing every hour. I think i am more focused in the important things in the things that make me happy.
It's not really spiritual but there was a 12 hour period after I had a scan and before I received the results where my mind wandered and I was convinced I was seriously ill. It made me think about death.
Firmly planted in the same church as last year. Experienced healing through prayer. There have been confirmations that made me more firm in the faith. Answered prayer too which is always awesome. God is good. A deeply spiritual moment was God being in a particular place in my heart. There's a picture of me as a little girl running up to my dad and jumping on his lap. You can tell he wasn't expecting it lol...but accepted me none the less. My dad, since I was a kid has been the one I turn to for security, who taught me about life, who was disciplinarian, etc. A very wise man. One day the picture came to mind and it was Jesus in the chair I was running to Him. And so when I get scared, or something happens, I remember that picture. As for spiritual warfare, the enemy has been using fear, sudden terror. When I am in God's lap, nobody's going to mess with my Heavenly Abba. I'm safe there. What's really serendipitous is dad and I were talking about life and not being afraid. That no matter what the circumstances look like, all the days ordained for me were written in His book - which I know to be true. And knowing and trusting in God's plan and His goodness, no matter what happens, He's got me and He's not going to let me go...and no one can snatch me out of His hand either.
My life this year has been about giving to others. My self has suffered, but my life has become more meaningful. Giving of myself for the betterment of my community has been far more enriching and meaningful than giving to myself.
This year I found the religion of my birth (Catholic), may be on course with the beliefs I have developed over my life. Follow the teachings of Christ, take care of people and the planet first.
There has been a definite lack of indulgence of a spiritual nature this year, the closest I've come was just the other day while driving , when I realised how beautiful the country side can be.
no. not that i remember. being outside with a fire is...nice. humming along a highway at 75 mph is fun. watching benjamin or the kittens grow & learn is interesting, and watching dad & yoda just be [ or recover] is intense. that's the closest i can get.
Most of the spiritual experiences I have are within nature or within meditation. I have truly felt the power of the universe this year in many ways. I feel its power through the kindness and caring spirit of Dave. I feel it when the wind rustles every leave on every tree in my vicinity and I imagine myself within such an energy field. I felt it in Mexico when I was surrounded by all the best people on this planet, who traveled there for me, and who get to build relationships with each other. That experience in Mexico was so beautiful for me. I felt all the love of all those girls around me all the time. I have never felt more comfortable being me, and I will look back at that whenever I need to remember that I am loved. Over the past few months I have thought carefully about the Maya Angelou quote, "This a a wonderful day. I've never seen this one before." I think about it almost every day, but particularly when approaching the Andy Warhol Museum from the parking lot. I see this building, where I work, and I see the yellow bridge and city in the background and the sky above and think, today, and every day is a blessing. I am here on this earth again, and I need to remember to be thankful.
My daily Bible study continues to bring me spiritual fulfillment and sharing it with my group has brought many blessings.
I'm not a very spiritual person. I've had many uplifting artistic and cultural experience this year but they were just moments of happiness, moments of gratitude, and moments of pure satisfaction living in the now.
I want to speak to a couple of experiences that have been the most profoundly spiritual to me over this past year. These have been moments that I have been found. These have been moments that I have been seen. These are moments in which I am held, in a profound depth and nuance of my being, and with all the feeling in my heart. Naomi came, and Gabe, to put together and push through our action: to move the Jewish Federation of Portland. We met in the dining hall to organize ourselves into the magic wand, the mechanism, to form ourselves into the spell, the key. There they tried to pin me down against a binary that I refuse to acknowledge, that I exist across and between. Before them I was real, before them I was seen. In all the righteousness of what I have followed, what I have seen, what has irrupted in the Heart of my Self, over and against that self. Under the bridge Helen and I took retreat and opened a long closed space. This is Helen who took me aside to devote us to fossil fuels divestment. This is Helen who prepared vegan cookies with homemade almond milk and herbs, who tore open my heart to fill with righteousness. This is Helen in (t)her profound reverence, (t)her profound intelligence, (t)her profound intention. Helen took me aside and I began. I told her how I had withheld apology for the Summer, but so deeply felt it. I told her how I had withheld so much more, out of my own reverence, out of my own devotion, out of my own commitment, out of my own righteousness, out of my own guilt, out of my own shame, I told her of how much space I held. I cried with Helen as she held me there, believing me, seeing me, knowing me, my friend, loving me. And through the Parade, the culmination, the coming-to, the thus-and-thus, the such-and-all, that That's-It, the great one, the coming together, the coming apart, there on the threshold of all my devotion, of everything I had been blessed to give and to receive and to become, there I found him, and Bruce took my hand and looked me in the eye and told me he had been waiting for me, and thanked me for what I had done. And I explored deep into my own mystery, and I dived down into the very Beginning, and I explored that crystal spinning in the resonance, and as I spoke those three words and the Universe exploded into its totality of Becoming-Everything since and past and forever, in the Heart of It All, I am Seen in the Depths of My Love.
Not really but I am hoping to be inspired this year, having my fiancé around. He is Muslim and I am Jewish and since we are getting married in a few weeks, we are spending a year learning about each other's religions. I think it will teach me a lot about my religion as well as his since we will be raising our children as both and I am really excited about it!!!
I had a moment where I really got, more deeply than I ever had before, that there's nothing wrong with me. I have flaws and problems like everyone, but I am a human being, worthy of love and happiness like anyone else. It sounds so basic and obvious, but it's a big deal to finally really break free of the pernicious, corrosive concept of original sin that I received from my religious upbringing, which was reinforced by years of struggling with chronic depression. It's a bit destabilizing because now I don't feel any need to go to church anymore. I'm still working out how to integrate this "new normal."
All my experiences I see as spiritual. I understand my connection to the universe and to ALL, while I bask in it.
Yes, the opportunity to be in nature with my horse and to ride all of the many miles we have completed this year is very spiritual to me. Also getting the chance to go to NM and be in the mountains and listen to the quivering aspens is incredible. I'm hoping to be living there next year.
I continue to try and recognize and be grateful for all the mini-spiritual experiences that are around me every day. Waking up to my husband's kisses. Smelling the air after it rains. Riding the subway and noticing when someone gives up their seat for someone else. Going for a bike ride in the park in the morning. Connecting with a client and feeling like I helped them get through something difficult.
A renewal service at the Hillel institute. I finally felt as though there was a congregation that I could connect to. It was the first time I cried during a service.
Awe when we got to see Pluto for the first time in history
I don't know that I have had any specific experience that I would call spiritual this past year. This being said, I did have a major shift in how I let my job impact me and my mood. The stress used to control almost every aspect of my life. I was tired, bitter, angry, lazy and just drained. I am not certain at what point this changed. If I were to guess it would be a day I received an email from a client that was scathing and it was the last straw in terms of having support and I walked into the Directors office and told her things need to change or I am going to have to find a new job. My work load shifted but the upper management still suck however, I don't let them get to me. I don't care enough and pretty much say to myself "They do not deserve my energy or health"
I have had many dreams this year that have helped shape my choices -- including seeking a new job and trying to take better care of myself. But I continue to struggle and I know I must keep listening to my subconscious mind.
I was soaking in a pool outdoors, and a fly landed next to me in the water. It was struggling and kicking, so I took it out of the water and put it on a leaf nearby. A few seconds later, it crawled straight back into the water. Once again, I took it out of the water and put it a little further away from the water. And, once again, it crawled straight back into the water. This time, I scooped it up and left it in a little pool of water in my hand. In the moments of looking at it in the water, I realized that it was dying...and that it wanted to be in the water. I lowered my hand so that it could very easily get back into the water. it didn't crawl back into the water, but resettled on my hand near the water, and died. I felt like this was a channel to my mother...all she wanted at the end of her life was to swim, to be immersed in water. Her doctors wouldn't let her go into a body of water. She yearned for the water so badly...and was kept from it. And although this may have extended her life by a matter or weeks or months, she wasn't happy.... and I wondered, in that moment, if we should've let her wander into the water on her own, and be how she wanted to be in her final moments...
Buddhism. In many ways it has provided me with clarity, and it other smaller ways, it has restored a healthier state of mind.
Religion and Jewish identity continue, but more so this year, to bring out emotions and conflictual thoughts within me. I've cried at both Rosh Hashanah services, and again tonight at erev Yom Kippur. Reading Life of Pi was a spiritual experience, because that too made me cry, and made me decide to accept spirituality into my life, to accept Judaism as more than just an appreciation of history and culture. (Then again, The Song of Achilles made me cry too, and for hours.) Also, going to my first One Direction concert was a spiritual experience for me. First of all, it was great to see them, even though I was dishonest with mom (out of shame, I guess) about how I funded my ticket (scalping, even though I am proud of that, and proud of how much I sold my extra pair for). However, more meaningfully, Harry asked a girl, insistently, to hand him her rainbow flag. And then he ran down the catwalk waving it before tossing it into the crowd. That was the first time I've felt pride or belonging to that community. It really changed something within me.
I have seen the Lord provide for me time and time again, especially since moving. He has given me greater things than I even thought to ask for, and that makes me so grateful. I keep expecting his goodness to run out, to reach its limit, and yet he continues to pour it out over me. This just reminds me how much He cares for me, that I will always be His child. I will always be taken care of.
I struggle with faith, and a belief in a higher power of some sort; to say that I have no faith might not be going too far. My father, a rabbi, psychologist and pianist, composed some music to a poem by Chana Senesh - יש כוכבים. My mother loved the words and the melody, and was a member of the temple's chorale group that sang it at high holiday services. At her memorial service, my father, who at the time was terminally ill with an inoperable brain tumor, accompanied the chorale as they sang this melody. The chorale once again sang it as his funeral, and at a memorial in my parents' honor this summer 2015. This holy day season, the congregation was gifted, thanks to a generous donation by the estate of one of its members, new prayer books published by the reform movement. In it, the poem by Chana Senesh appears around the Kaddish. I had known that the congregation had taken to singing the melody as a part of regular services, and had experienced it a couple of times with my father at Friday night services near the end of his life. I was not prepared for the hurt and sadness I experienced upon hearing it at services this high holy day season. It's the first Rosh Hashana I went through with neither of my parents. I expect it will be a very long time before I can hear this poem, set to this melody, without feeling more emotion with which I know what to do.
One of the more profound spiritual moments I had this year was going to see NYCB when they performed "Everywhere We Go" and "Pictures at an Exhibition". I'd been feeling down recently before that due to two student suicides on campus and thinking about Jeanie. Watching these two pieces reminded me of the good and happy in the world by invoking my love of dance. I felt a cloud lift off me as I watched them and as it lifted something that had been broken in me since Jeanie's death was healed. I was much happier afterwards and for the first time felt truly like my old self again.
I would consider my journey through Poland to have been a "spiritual" experience. I wouldn't say spiritual in terms of like, God and stuff... but I would say that it gave me a culturally and historically spiritual/rich experience. The thing from Poland that stuck out to me the most was Sobibor. Sobibor is one of the 5 big death camps from WWII. Unlike Majdanik ( the only other camp we had seen before) which has many structures still standing, Sobibor has NOTHING. We drove up in our bus to the original train tracks and opened the curtains. It was a beautiful summer day outside: blue skies, green grass, perfect temperature, and just the right amount of wind that it was breezy but not windy and miserable. It was the definition of perfect weather. We look out the window and what do we see? NOTHING but trees, a big open field, a small house where a family lives (how they live on the historic site of a death camp, I will never understand), a structure for bathrooms, and a path that leads to the back section. We got out of the bus, the perfect temperature hitting our sunkissed faces, and we go to the bathrooms. On the bus we watched a movie called, "Escape from Sobibor" all about, you guessed it, the rebellion and escape from Sobibor. In the movie the scene is set in the camp, with men in blue jumpsuits, barking dogs, and lots of commotion. When we walked to the bathrooms, what did we see? We saw men in blue jumpsuits hauling around a statue- clearly working. We saw a dog chained to a fence... he wouldn't stop barking at us. (His bark sounded a. like the dogs in the movie. b. like my dog at home) We saw a little girl through the curtains of the house, running and playing. This was the absolute most uncomfortable I have EVER been in my ENTIRE life. While this might not have been spiritual in a godly sense, it was an experience for me that made me reflect on my life and experiences a lot. It made me think about my great-grandparents who were holocaust survivors, and how they might have lived their lives back then. It made me appreciate how lucky I am to have gone to Poland- and ultimately live the life I live.
I guess so. Yoga is the main home of my spiritual life. Through yoga I have been able to find and listen to my inner voice which is where I believe God lies. I have also been given the physical balance to listen to others inner voices. I would like to continue to broaden that practice. I love how my Rabbi shares with us his vision for things. It is so lovely that it is spiritual. Transcendant. I wish I could have more time to listen to him more, and reflect. We visited New Orleans for the first time this year - not sure why, but it was one of the most spiritual places I have ever experienced. Loved Jazz Fest. Glad for music, and art. Want to experience more of it. So grateful for friends. They are the most intense connection to the spirit that I know.
One of the paintings that happened after my dad died was moving. When it was complete, the images that emerged presented as an inner mirror or reflection of my soul in that moment of grief. Whatever time spent painting and carving on that door panel, each movement had an authentic gesture that can never be repeated.
Completely, primarily I have been taken to a place of less questioning more action and belief. This happened through spiritual awakenings of giving up yes fight, saying yes, and not listening inside but outside. I have been touched by so much art and so many moments I'm happy I don't control the world not is it all about me.
I feel like I've been blessed to have had a year full of spiritual moments and while some were small secular moments the one that I will stick with me was only a month ago when I went to the mikveh for my conversion the immersion sand just feeling that connection and it was also a moment I had been waiting for for a very long time
I've not had any specific spiritual experiences as such, but I have been trying to understand my culture a little more deeply than before.
My G-d, I trust You so much more. One more year together, and we have grown even closer. I know You better. You have sharpened my resilience, You have showed me Yourself and spoken to me about Your love and Your faithfulness. It's another year in the books. We got better. Thank You for Your closeness, Your presence, Your breath. I know You are mine and I am Yours. Last year I learned that You aren't mad at me. This year, I was able to hold onto that and build and grow on the foundation of Your Holiness.
Living in Israel for the past month has truly changed me as a person. I feel it's affecting my spirituality and I love learning the language and culture.
Yes I have...great and awful ones. The good spiritual experience(s) have impacted my life to become a seeker of everything The Lord Jesus Christ wants to teach me. Through others teachings or through whatever HE wants to teach; I want to hear His voice and follow. Note: The only awful part of all that was that at times my warfare in the spirit realm was not always on point; the enemy of The Lord stirred up everything opposite of what the Bible says is from The Lord: "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change" James 1:17 ESV Bible I hope to learn from these experiences and change change change my responses to evil in the future.
Saying Kaddish for my Mom has been hollow at times and made me feel like an outsider in Judaism but at times it also filled me with longing to find my place in the Jewish community.
As always, my most spiritual moments always come from being outside, active, away from all but a few people, deeply entrenched in nature. That's when I feel the most like myself, and the most closely connected to the world. It's those moments that recharge and refresh me, and these moments that I seek out, even if just on an evening run. These experiences have also helped me to realize that I should be spending more of my time in those places, and less and less in offices and buildings. One moment in particular that stands out was during the Vermont City Marathon, at about mile 22, when I was going negative, and sinking into doubt about my ability to finish. I looked up, and realized that I was on a beautiful bike path, running parallel to Lake Champlain with thousands of fellow runners, and the sun was coming through the green trees, temperature perfect, and light dandelion seeds floating through the air. It was a magical moment and I was so thankful to be there, even with 22 miles under my belt that day.
I had a good travel experience to Switzerland in March. I have traveled there three times this year, each time getting less exciting. But when I went in March, it was such a relief to be on my own and being forced to let go of whatever was happening at home, with Rowan, or anyone else. To stop that thought cycle of worrying about when someone else is eating, sleeping and pooping--and just focusing on myself and my work was really a revelation. It was really the first time I had been able to do it since Rowan was born, and it was freeing.
I had a day of fasting, prayer and reading the Bible that was special in so many ways. I've never really dedicated a day to that, and I don't think I seek the Holy Spirit to be active in my life...it seems like I (and I think I'm not the only one who does), listen and wait to hear the Spirit. I need to make this constant, a habit...I know through Him I will grow and He will make me into what He wants me to be.
Nope, not that I can think of
based on how much healing i have to do and how much sleep deprivation i've experienced, spiritual experiences have been scarce. it's hard to feel spiritual when your body and mind have been slammed by a lack of basic physical needs. :D that being said, there have been some beautiful moments. over the summer, mostly. i wanna be myself more!! i wanna feel good. hope i get there sometime soonish.
No, I feel very lost in my spirituality. I'm starting to question whether I made the best choices on the path. In my current spirituality, I've never experienced even the most mundane of epiphanies or felt the grace of a profound experience. I'm honestly tired and would like to just have one day in the sun before shuffling off this mortal coil and moving on to the next lifetime
I suppose finding success with EMDR and healing from PTSD really is the most important spiritual experience.
No not really other than becoming acutely obsessed with punk rock bands.
I continue to find grounding in my pagan faith. Surrounding myself with water and nature has brought forth a side of myself that I have supressed for far too long. I've opened myself up again and know I can manifest my life the way I want it. I have felt the call of my ancestors in this place, their energy and strength has aided me in my journey of self-discovery and self-love. Particularly, as I sat in an area of great residual energy, I saw my future and it is going to be greater than all of my past suffering!
The most intense experience that happened to me this year was three weeks before our wedding, Sean and I received two very poignant and personalized hate letters in the mail, denouncing our marriage and the way we were choosing to wed each other. There were even racist comments against me in the post script. This completely shook our world. I considered breaking off our engagement. I was so angry that someone in Sean's family had come to this point. How could this happen? How could he let this happen? We tried to go to work the next morning, but couldn't focus as noon stuck. He came and picked me up, I was so upset, I asked him to leave me alone for a few hours. I went to the park, tried to calm down, write, meditate, reflect on the issue, sing the serenity prayer. We came together later that evening. I was still upset and so deeply hurt. I had never felt that kind of hurt before. While traumatic events had happened to my family, I had never experienced such a purposeful personal attack on me. It hurt. As we were trying to go to bed, I just felt an outrage - how could one person shatter what we had worked so hard to create? What we had build together? Sean and I decided that he would write an e-mail to his entire family with copies of the letter, per my sister's suggestion. We never heard any response, except from my dad. The next day we turned our cell phones off, took the day off, and looked inward together. We stopped simply going through the motions, and asked each other, "Is this what we still want?" We ultimately decided, "Yes." Marriage with each other is what we want. The experience shook us to the core, made Sean confront his family, stand up for us, and made us actively say that we choose each other. We were able to build a stronger foundation - not one of glass that could easily shatter, but something that could expand and contract with change - maybe wood? The feeling we felt after we made the decision to stay together, was one of the most spiritual I have had. I felt such clarity. The world seemed so vibrant, so vivid. We shared a special meal out together that night, the wine tasted better, the tasted better, our interaction with the server was lovely. When we left the restaurant, we turned the corner, and two homeless men were listening to a battery-operated radio that happened to be playing "our song" - "Cruisin' ." Sean grabbed me and we danced in the streets. We saw so many signs that night. And it felt spiritual. And, for me, the neat thing was to share that kind of depth with Sean. I know he had never experienced that range of emotion before, and never experienced anything spiritual.
This one really threw me for a loop. I suppose seeing the big island of Hawaii was spiritual. I am so used to the relatively bland, and large, midwest that I'm amazed by waterfalls, and mountains so close to beaches. I also wondered about the original inhabitants, who lived in very inhospitable lands, as there were no "original" animals or good fruit / vegetable plans sources. All of the food came from the sea, but any land for raising cops (other than coconuts) would have been high in the hills. Also, in modern times, just realizing how much needs to be shipped to the island to sustain our current lifestyles is unbelievable.
I've been particularly devoid of spiritual experiences this year. I haven't talked to God, or listened to God, in a long time. I feel very far from him. I feel embarrassed to go running back to him, although in my prayers today I'm asking for a renewed walk with him and I confessed that I miss him in my life. I'm so strongly hoping that will change in the coming year. Two things have happened in the realm of religion and spirituality that I think have good potential to change me. The first is my starting a Bible Reading plan and journal. Sure, I've pretty much never stuck to a reading schedule, but my interaction with the text has been deep and meaningful. I particularly love posing questions about the text and hope to someday be able to go back and answer them. Secondly, in the past few days I've reflected on my deep longing to become an academic in the subject of religion. I may not be able to do that anytime soon, but I'm going to research it and hope for the best.
I have taken three semesters of a meditation and visualization incubator at school. It has been so helpful in my work and well-being. I don't always remember to meditate and have long absences, but when I do, or even when I am not, I can feel an open, expansiveness inside myself, and a greater sense of peace, calm and gratitude
A few times while meditating I could feel myself connected with the universe's shared life force. I also had rather mystic moments in the Mauritshuis museum in Den Haag... the Dutch Masters... spoke to my soul.
Not really. I guess the one thing is that I missed the Shmita year, and this year I know I need to let some wild in.
I have tried to work on a happier me. That has been a start to a spiritual journey. Unluckily I haven't been able to finish that journey, but I am picking it up at this moment so to speak. The few moments i tried to work on it, it really worked for me. Eventhough it are just a few rules, less social media, less online, more offline, less clutter by throwing away useless stuff. It all helps me with being an happier person.
A have a minor, yet real sense of awe that enables me to have many very small spiritual experiences most months - awe of something beautiful in nature, or from an idea of a great thinker, or the transcendent feeling I get from some music. Unfortunately, I have not danced much in this last year, or those moments would have come there, also. But as I think about this question (which I think I have often skipped in past years), I know that one source of regular spiritual experience is the many beautiful and delicious meals out that I have had with my husband. We are comfortable enough that we can get dressed up now and then (or I get dressed up, he prefers not to!), and eat out at a somewhat pricey restaurant, serving exquisite food. The experience of a cocktail, or glass of wine, and the appetizer and main course and dessert that is of such high quality, and rich flavors and textures, enjoyed in a beautiful setting, with staff who are at the top of their game - and to do that with my husband who enjoys it just as much - is such a joy to me. I am so deeply grateful for it. And so this experience is often accompanied by the knowledge that so many people never get to have a night like this. They simply can't afford it. Or they live someplace war torn, where restaurants like this can't stay in business. Or they are in an unhappy relationship which affects their enjoyment of so many other things. It almost feels like an embarrassment of riches that we can, so often - and on a whim - decide to have a night like that. But I don't believe that my not enjoying such nights would improve the world. It does make me feel like we need to give more to the organizations we care about. Having two incomes -- and with my husband's being more than mine ever was -- has enabled me to feel this appreciation so much more deeply, but also this feeling that we are not doing enough, given the riches we have.
After 42 years, I finally went to Israel. I spent 16 days in Israel, with a brief overnight stint to Petra. I have been back now for less than two weeks, so I am still processing the experience. It was amazing from beginning to end, and I only regret not having had more time there. I truly did feel at home and welcomed. Interestingly enough, I came away feeling my identity as a Jew much more strongly, but I didn't feel particularly more religious. I feel more interest in Israel, in my people, and in history and tradition, but I feel even more strongly that orthodox religious observance is misinformed and causes so many problems in this world. Seeing how the holy sites for Judaism, Christianity, and Islam are literally built on top of each other in Jerusalem and throughout Israel just made me focus on our similarities and think that we should all find some way to get along. But because of strict interpretations, politics, and hatred, the people in the middle east do not. I think Israel is a beautiful, special place. I am incredibly moved by it and by the people I met there. I am changed somehow. I'm not sure how yet. But I am thankful to have had the experience.
This year I have not had any deeply spiritual experiences. Having said that, as I reflect on the past year I recognize that there's a void in my life. There are many things that I like (artistic, musical, etc.) that I'd like to experience with my husband. Often our tastes differ and he has little or no interest. I'm ashamed to say that I've not taken advantage of them on my own. I've committed to changing that going forward.
I had a dream about my boyfriend's mother touching his arm while he slept. The thing is I don't believe it was a dream. She was all light, like an angel. We had visited his hometown and relatives that day. I didn't know his mom, but she had been deceased for a couple of years. He said after that prior to that night he would awake and look for someone in the same spot where I saw her because he felt someone there. He no longer had that feeling after that night. I think she finally felt okay leaving him.
Yes, through work and family, but not through my synagogue. There have been a few times at work when I felt that my work was making an impact on the lives of people within a community. That was powerful and inspiring to do more. My family is so loving and it warms my heart. Even though I am not sure how to accept it. I am concerned that my experiences at synagogue have been more negative than positive. One friend told me its because I am on the Board and that can be hard. Hard because the place you go to spiritually recharge is the same place that you go to raise money to keep the lights on. It becomes work.
Memories flood in, the word "spiritual" is a touchstone to the this year's history. Time melts into a placid mirror. Proud and humbled, an awareness brings me to my center. My vacillations reduce their magnitude like a boisterous child settling under his mother's caring watchful eye. While the pleated coral meditation cushion I had sewn at the studio is scarcely dimpled, and my hormones perforate the meager membrane of my serenity, I am content in knowing that my feet are firmly upon my path, and I have friends along my stroll.
Return to meditation, more calm, controlled
Despite the fact that I hung up my meditation prayer flags in my SpicyThai room this afternoon, I wouldn't necessarily say this year has brought any powerful spiritual experiences. I guess through exercise I have found a kind of hobby (I can't believe I said that) that allows me to meditate and really appreciate the beauty around me when I'm running outside. Unlike running, I actually very much enjoy walking around and this year it's really been solidified as my favorite getting-to-know-a-new-city activity.
The burnout felt spiritual in ways. Girlpack and the absence of a major revelation ended up being pretty spiritual. Yoga has certainly been a spiritual practice and I can't wait to go to YOTM! I have also been trying to connect to my spirit guides. A lot in motion!
Sharing a parasail ride with Joan - such a thrill to overcome her resistance and enjoy together - and what a beautiful smile and sense of love!
I'm not sure there was any one experience, but I feel like I am close to God, maybe closer than last year? I have taken more time to pray for many people and made commitments to several to pray every day. I try to be more dependent on God's guidance. Several times I have sent prayers to people and they have responded that what I sent was EXACTLY what they needed that day - that is surely a God thing. I have been touched many times by spiritual songs and am learning to trust God without undue worry, about my grandsons' driving. Omar's and Anna Mary's funerals one day apart got me in touch with some of my more personal grief.
When we were on our way back from Akko, the Carmel under rainclouds on the right and the sea on the left. For some reason I got very emotional, impressed by the beauty and cried because of it and because of a strong sense of thankfulness to the Infinite, in wich I'm not even sure I believe.
I experienced the funeral in Japan of my father in law. Many of their customs were very different from what I've experienced in the US. The body was displayed on ice for a day at their home before the formal funeral. Everyone was touching it. They had a prayer shrine in the living room and prayed frequently with gongs and incense. I was honored to be mentioned in the slide show highlighting some of the great moments in Shigeru's life. I was struck by how much people loved him and how generous he had been to friends and family. The grieving process in Japan is much longer and deeper than here. My wife really believed that her dad was able to communicate with her from the beyond through nature, and one of the things she asked for appeared to manifest itself. I almost had to believe it myself.
Being a parent has helped me be not only more patient with my baby or myself but with God as well. Why does He allow suffering in my life? Well, maybe He needs to finish the dishes....or finally take a shower.....or get the laundry load going.....or have some sleep! It's not like He's gone if I feel alone. He's just in the other room and He'll be right back.
I am able to hear my "yes" and "no" inside myself so much more clearly... my inner knowing, my spirit voice is talking louder... I am starting to be able to speak my truth and share it with others more. I am starting to replace the old idea of God, with this new one, and it is very healing for me.
In church, we were singing a hymn and I had a vision of angels all the way up (kind of the opposite of turtles all the way down, I guess), all of us exalting God as the universe sang. I saw the play "Once". I loved the first act so much, the songs and the dancing, I was almost in tears. We were at the Freer gallery in DC. There was a celadon bowl there I last saw in 1978; it was just as I remembered it, cool, cool,clear celadon green infinity in the glaze.
Enrolling in this Architecture and Interior Design certificate program at Parsons was like a revelation for me. I'm finally scratching an itch, and I feel more inspired and optimistic because of it.
Interesting..believe it or not, there is some sense of spirituality that i feel when i am swimming. When I am in the deep end of the pool and see the bottom and realize how far up i am and i have the flexibility of moving my body around, crawl into a ball, etc, it's kind of a spiritual moment for me. On another note, I went for Friday night services this year at Romemu on the upper west side of Manhattan. Although my husband wasn't into it, "too hippy" for him, it was very spiritual for me. It was the first time in a long time that I felt connected, kind of really touching my soul.
When I walk out doors on a beautiful day , and see the trees so pretty green and the flowers so bright , when I feel the warm sun on my skin and feel the breeze in my hair , I know there must be a superior intelligence , I call it God , who made all these things and gave them to me to enjoy .
Today I watched an inchworm crawl up my father's gravestone. I was talking to him, telling him how proud he'd be of our family's continued commitment to one another and to our Jewish faith, when I realized that the worms were eating his body, worms just like this one, and maybe this worm was full and was exercising it off by scaling the gravestone, and I laughed as I thought of this, because it was the kind of morbid humor Papa sometimes liked, and so he was alive in me then, and in that worm's digestive system, and generally in the world, and I felt connected.
Spending time with my amazing family when there is no fighting is spiritual for me. The moments are fleeting, but wonderful. We have three awesome children who are good people to the core and it's when they remember that about themselves that those beautiful moments seem to appear and last. When they play nicely together, speak respectively and lovingly to each other, it makes for a very peaceful, spiritual experience.
I had a comfortable and confident Passover this year. Why confident? Because I was able to keep Passover without worrying about whether I was doing it right. I made some decisions about what would work for me, the rules I chose made sense to me and I didn't worry about the rest. The first couple years I tried to do this, I was a fish out of water and didn't feel like I understood and therefor wasn't getting what I needed out of the holiday. This year felt different. I was calm, ate what I ate, was able to explain it to the kids and felt like I had a meaningful connection to the holiday. The kids picked up on this comfort and voluntarily changed their diet for Passover as well. It was awesome.
Watching my mother die was a spiritual experience. I am glad that her children were at her bedside. It was also incredibly comforting to have Rafael there. Before marrying Daddy, Mom was Catholic, and she had been quite devout as a child. Although none of us is religious and Jim is virulently anti-faith, I asked Rafael to say a prayer when Mom's breathing became so labored and it was clear that she was in her last moments. He said the rosary. Seconds after he finished and said "Amen," she was dead. Final breath. But she waited for him to finish.
Defining spiritual to include "secular spiritual experiences" amazes me. Sadly, however, I'd have to accept the broader "definition" in order to comment. Must fix this in 2016.
Nothing in particular that I can think of. I actually let Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur sneak up on me this year. I am a Christian and Jesus atoned for my sin, but I like to remember these yearly events anyway. I still don't attend church but try to live a life pleasing to God even though I fall short. I have been listening to Joseph Prince which I believe is of God, and I am learning new things about God's love for me and my place in him. For instance, righteousness is a gift from God and cannot be earned.
I have finally found myself after years of searching. Through my breathe, through yoga, through meditation. Mindfulness starts and ends with the breathe. I am learning. I am practicing. Breathing in, I breathe in harmony. Breathing out, I smile. Ommmmmmm
After reading 6 books (Bounce, Nudge, Train Your Mind: Change Your Brain:, Outliers: and The Genius in us all) about the ability of humans to learn... I am starting to evolve my idea about what knowledge is. Those people who have practiced and became good at "their thing" have persevered and the struggle was part of it. As a public school teacher I need to push kids and ensure "They get it done" and not reduce or dumb down their curriculum. As I tell them... parents want you to try... teachers want you to do it. Mindset tells you... never tell a kid their smart. Then if they have to study... they are not smart (and if they are smart they don't have to study). It is an insidious cycle. Tell them they worked hard and continue to do so. Our 2 children worked harder than us to succeed. It is important that parents push their children beyond what they had to do!
In the moments when I can totally surrender my own ego and need for the illusion of control, I connect to God. It's a lot harder than you'd think.
I have an interesting relationship with God. I fall on my knees when I am completely broken and I soak up everything that I can - more of Him and less of me. I was so poisonous to myself, made so many poor choices that I needed to let it all go and let someone else make the calls. I went to a 3 day church retreat with a church that I had only attended one time prior -- and it was the day that I signed up for the retreat. It was so very good for my soul. I sobbed and opened myself up and realized that what I had been doing was not working. Something had to change. Maybe everything needed to change. And then I was happy. Happier than I have ever been before. But you know what? Then I stopped going to church again. I let myself be distracted with sleeping in or plans or nothing at all. I still feel that presence. I still feel myself leaning. But I don't give myself over like I did in the beginning of this year. I think about it though, I feel guilty almost every Sunday when I don't make it to church. I tell myself that it doesn't really matter if I am here or there, right? But honestly, I have never felt the presence and weight of the Lord as I did when at Trinity Grace. There were moments when my hands were up and out and they felt HEAVY and it was as if I could FEEL what I was seeking. I felt so peaceful in those moments. I hope that one day I find myself back there again, and this time as a mostly whole person and not as a sobbing shell.
No, I wish i could say yes. Have i not paid attention? am i expecting too much? Do i not recognize such experiences? Does God answer prayers? If so, why have mine not been answered? Is it lack of faith? is it lack of understanding what that means? Am i asking the wrong questions? do i not see/hear the answers?
God is always teaching me things and this year has been no exception. The biggest lesson this year has been CONTENTMENT. To read about it, visit www.yonderbreaks.com/inspiration
Had a baby.
I fell in love. Technically that was last year but I was hesitant to write about it then. I still get the tingles every single damn time I with with him. Tingles, I tell you! The chemistry is like nothing I have imagined or experienced. For my entire life preceding meeting him I longed for such a feeling and at some point just gave up thinking it could be real. The poets, artists, and writers of the world were right. There is such a thing as True Love and it does defy explanation. More than a year later? Still all tingly.
Nature, the universe and the wonder of our natural world are a constant inspiration and magical to me. I cannot help but get excited about a moon rise, dew on new blossoms. the galaxies exploding over my head, sound of rain and wind, the light of sun on tree back. They make me grateful I can see, smell, feel hear and even taste a world I nor any other person, did not create.
No particular spiritual experience in the past year. However, I do feel the spirit of love and care all around me. I know it is there even when I am distressed and can't feel or recognize it because I have shut off the awareness.
I seem to have them often. Not just one particular experience. If not every day, most days I find myself truly experiencing a particular moment or experience or scene, whatever and feel good, alive blessed! It is wonderful. I love that I am noticing it and taking the time to make it meaningful
I would say that actually i have had a less spiritual experience year compared to the rest of my life. for the last 5 years, i have suffered from depression which has led to me feel extremely low about my self and has made me question who i am and what do i believe in. i am very fond of my religion and culture and will stand up for it to anyone who mocks it, however i definitely used to be more religious and more spiritual than i am now. it does upset me that this is where i have become but maybe i am meant to be here instead. i do want to become more religious again i guess it just depends on who i end up with and how religious they will be. All i know is that i am proud of who i am now and what i believe in!
I began painting. I've found emotions and revelations in my paintings that I didn't even know I had. It's helped me connect more to myself.
Not really. The Hubble's Telescope things was pretty good last year. Perhaps the Nothingness talk hosted by Neil deGrasse Tyson. That was interesting and enlightening -- what is nothing?; how was it conceived?; what is before it?; what leads to something? Big questions indeed that almost feel spiritual. Spiritual in the personal sense that it reminds me of what I -- we, they, those scientists -- don't know or fully understand all while seemingly defying common sense and/or logic. It's beautifully humbling. Yeah, that's pretty spiritual for this year.
I enrolled in an introduction to Judaism course last fall and followed this with my first Passover Seder. Learning about the culture, religion, and traditions was one thing - actually following the customs surrounding Passover was a totally different story. I enjoyed the entire experience though because it made me feel part of a community to which I have always sought entrance. While I am not ethnically Jewish, I felt that by partaking in one of the High Holidays, I finally started to understand what it might mean to be Jewish.
I think about my grandmother all the time, pretty much daily. I think about her when I put on my jewelry (a lot of which was hers), when I clean my kitchen or do the laundry, when I look at my daughter's adorable face, and when I light the shabbat candles. Sometimes I find it surprising that she is on my mind so much. I love her dearly still and she is a part of my life even though she has been gone for years. I would have loved for her to meet my daughter. It makes me cry to think that thought, every time. She is still as real to me as ever.
I have truly loved worshipping with my church family and have had lots of wonderful experiences. I hope the church is in a better place this time next year and that we have a solid foundation.
I can only think of my son's bar mitzvah, when I felt surrounded by my temple "family", who had come to support my son and celebrate w/ us.
This was a weird year - it was very much the year of coming out of hibernation after my illness went into remission. I'd say the experience of healing was pretty spiritual though. All aspects of it, from learning how to rest in the spaces between pain, to learning how to believe in healing at all. I spent the last 4 years constantly confronting mortality, asking "is this it? is this how it ends?" I spent a lot of time trying to prepare myself for the worst, just in case. And I feel like something very potent in my was galvanized by it all, but I don't quite know what it is or how to describe it. I learned more about vitality than I ever imagined. Actually, that's really the thing: before I got sick I was never really sure that I was alive, never fully convinced that I existed or mattered or had any reason to be here. And somewhere in the dialog between illness and wellness, that changed and I finally understood that the *being here* IS the reason, the *being alive* is the why of it all. I'd have to say that was incredibly spiritual.
This year, more than any other, has been a time of spiritual experiences. I lived in another country, graduated college, had the lead role in a local theatre performance, etc. This entire year has been opportunity after opportunity; however, some of the opportunities were not happy or pleasant experiences to follow through on-I'm proud of myself for doing so. I have grown, learned, and developed into a strong and genuinely happy human being. This year, I think I finally understood how to be an opportunist; to truly live and seek out what makes me happy.
On my fellowship, I got to experiment what the reform movement is all about. I didn't know much and learning, and being open and adapting to a different culture has taught me so much. I hope to continue to learn more about this movement throughout the months. In our morning ritual, we sat on the floor, outside and meditated. I never felt so close to my mother, who passed away. It was as if she was right next to me. Today was Yom Kippur, I attended the Yizkor prayer. I couldn't stop crying and thinking about my mom and brother. I miss them terribly and really wish they were close to me. When we were done, I heard myself breathe heavily, as if I was relieved and I did feel better after the service. I honored their soul and didn't feel so "Heavy" afterwards.
Spiritual. Ah. It's been a weird year religiously for me, that's for sure. With not keeping kosher or Shabbat abroad, I felt a lot less of a compulsion to keep any of it when I came back as well. So I now feel even more confused about my Jewish identity than before I left but I also think I have accepted that none of that is probably going to change too much for the rest of my life. Luckily, spirituality is also different from religious experiences, though I have always appreciated my religious experiences. Every time I saw or performed live music in Cape Town I think was spiritual for me. I have missed music so much. I'm so sad that I let it leave my life in the way it has. It used to be my life and I don't have to drop it. I'm excited to get to play more. It's such a beautiful part of life.
Just a month ago, at the Birthright Israel Fellows conference, I had the opportunity to tell a story infront of the entire crowd on the day I ended shloshim. I was later invited to the evening Orthodox minyan to say Kaddish. I was supported on both sides by two friends, I had only made the day before, and I started out, saying Kaddish by myself, and started crying. I needed help and their physical support to lean on as I finished. I have never been attracted to Orthodox Minyans, but there I was standing in the middle of the group saying Kaddish and I have never felt more included or welcome in a community before.
I'm tired. I feel empty inside. I want to believe in something or feel something but I don't. I thought maybe I should go to church but I don't really have any faith and find it all hard to digest. I'm just tired and think that my body is wearing down.
After talking to Pat realized it when I help some one example guy who had sleep apania or healing hands. The apania guy seem like he was over whelmed that I cared enough to go out and tell him
My spiritual experience is the feeling that God is helping me all along with the crazy events that have been happening to me recently but I see his hand everywhere and he has definitely been watching over me and my baby. I feel safe that if I continue to pray and continue to generate good karma in the decisions I make and the way I treat others then He will continue to help me help myself and good things will happen even if it is often hardship that gets me there.
I am a spiritual cultural and artistic heathen. So no.
I'm not sure whether or not this is truly "spiritual," but I was really worried for some months that my dog was dying. He's fifteen, so it's definitely something that could happen at any time, but even though I understood that on a basic level, I don't think I really understood what that would mean to me until this summer when he got really sick. This dog has been such a support system to me, through my parents' divorce, through my mental health issues and all of the many moves. Faced with the thought of him dying, I had to really ask myself "Am I going to be able to make it without him?" He's pulled through, now, and is doing pretty well, but I think this experience gave me a much fuller understanding of just how traumatic death can be, and a stronger sense of gratitude for all of the people and animals in my life.
I have found deep calm within my soul in the quiet of the woods, the rolling waves of the ocean, the rise and fall of my lover's sleeping breath, and the rustling shimmer of leaves.
Nothing particularly stands out. There have been small moments as my relationship with Karl has deepened, and other isolated instances at services or performing in community theater, but nothing specific.
It seems like dozens. The majesty of nature at glaciers & waterfalls in Argentina, works of the Japanese through the ages, whether temples, gardens, or a giant graveyard, artistic inspiration at MOMA, Broadway (Fun.Home, Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time), or by Karen's work were all spiritual. There was a calm, spiritual feeling in the Zen rock garden Kyoto, at some services at PJTC, holding a grandson while the drifted off to sleep, and moments with Karen. As with all of the above, always with Karen.
In late October of last year my father, who was 103 years old, suddenly took ill. My brothers and their wives, my cousin, my daughters, my brothers children and some of their children, all came to visit Dad. Dad was an amazing person. On March 31 of 2014 dad moved in to a back unit that we have. It's kind of a mother-in-law unit. He had his own bedroom a good-sized living room and the bathroom. He was happy there. Dad had pain in his knees from arthritis; he needed knee replacement surgery but it just didn't seem feasible at 103. Every morning dad would get up by himself do all his morning ablutions in the bathroom, and get himself dressed. It was a very short walk from dads unit to our house; he would grab a cane and he'd walk across the patio, maybe 15 steps, and enter our home. He usually did not know whether I would be here or not as my hours were erratic. Every time that I was here and dad entered our house he would enter singing. He'd be in pain from his knees and his arthritis and he would enter singing. While all of us were here, and by this time dad was in hospice, it came into my head that we should go sing to my dad. So we all gathered around his bed and started singing songs to him that we knew he'd like. A smile came across his face even though he had been unresponsive; I think for all of us in the room the coming together, being with Dad, and singing to him, for him and for ourselves was an extremely enlightening, emotional, spiritual moment. I no it was for me. I am so grateful to have experienced it.
I sat in on a class at Amritapuri University in Kollam, India that discussed the relationship between Quantum Physics and the Vedanta (Hindu Scriptures). The professor used the role of 'the observer' in the double slit experiment and compared that role to the role of the individual in Hinduism - or any faith journey. He compared that to avatars in Hinduism and how they only contain features of creatures known to a person living in the region where Hinduism was created. For instance, no Hindu Avatar has the head of a bald eagle or body of Koala bear. Then he talked about the idea that we are all one consciousness so are responsible for striving towards a greater state of consciousness with others. That helps us understand our place in this world and ultimately become part of one love.
No I don't think so, but I have come to some conclusions about my views on certain topics e.g. hell. And I think that whilst that's not necessarily 'spiritual' it will impact any spiritual experiences I have in the future.
I haven't had any major spiritual experiences this year. I do continue to pray each day and my prayers continue to be answered. I did just travel to South Dakota, the land there is beautiful and the people were incredibly friendly. It was a great trip - Mt. Rushmore is an impressive memorial.
Having pray with me, over me and for me and having people ask me to pray with them. This gives me such a connection to God -- it's amazing. It makes me feel so much closer to God and to these people.
Going to Parkinson's workshop with other PD patients and sharing their accomplishments and frustrations and positive outlook on each day. I especially enjoyed the painting and music units--relaxing and being spontaneous.
Our trip to India this past January proved to be a fairly spiritual experience. It opened my eyes to other religions, and helped me to recognize the deep beauty there is in a spiritual lifestyle, regardless of which god/God you may be worshipping.
Any morning I wake up recalling a fragment of a dream that involves my late parents, specially my mother, is a spark of spirituality--a glimpse of the far larger world outside the boundaries of my physical universe. I believe such dreams are not only the product of my subconscious, but also a sign that my parents are reaching out to me.
I got married, I feel like it was a moment I'll always remember. The moment I stood at the top of the altar with Colin holding my hands was magical. And same with our first dance. It was like he and I were the only beings in existence for those few moments.
No actually, this year has seemed to have a lot of searching but not a whole lot of answers. I guess that's part of the spiritual process though, there is no ultimate answers to the big questions. The Vipassana Retreat in June was significant... I left feeling like I had a better understanding of the human condition and I could see so clearly how it has an incredible handle on me. Learning to witness my craving and aversions and trying to be more mindful in my daily life has been an important and ongoing lesson.
Not a one.
Travel has long been and continues to be a spiritual experience for me. I'm not without my fears of traversing a new landscape without my bearings and sometimes language skills, especially as a young woman. Still, the moment I land in an airport in another country, I feel blessed to have the means to travel and the opportunity to get to know a new place, culture and people. I often think back a few generations to my grandfather who also had a love for other places, cultures and peoples and my grandmother who had a village upbringing and second grade education but traveled the world with him. Part of the reason I don't take this for granted is that I've had to work for these opportunities - do research, write papers, prepare talks and find funding, and I know that there are others, like me once upon a time, who could only dream of these opportunities. How has this affected me? It continues to open up my heart, help me be more understanding of different world views and shapes my own identity.
I'm not a very spiritual person; I think of myself as more religious… although this year I've been struggling with that too. Why can't these matters ever be simple? Why can't we just exist without pressure to conform or perform? Le sigh! I just want to be me and feel okay with myself no matter how I choose to present (or not present) myself religiously.
Yoga theory classes were truly spiritual for me. I continue to look for unifying concepts in religion and philosophy and it really expanded my personal philosophical thought. I came to a decision to try very hard to be more compassionate without sacrificing truthfulness. My epiphany was to realize that this is possible if you are very careful to discern what truth is. It is not my opinion, but more of a scientific universal truth. And I came to realize that I am too quick to agree with someone compassionately and not be honest. Not easy stuff to do, but hopefully a beginning to leading a more enriched and enriching life
An increasingly and powerful awareness of the effect being in nature has on me....profoundly healing. I can lose myself, in the woods and he canyons, listening to a stream, and feel my spirit restored, my vibration raised. I went to Sedona with my mood so corroded by the negativity of others and emerged, after lots of hiking and sleep, washed clean and remembering what my own energy feels like....happy and light, open to joy.
I think I became more positive. I met a friend at work named Justine, and she helped me really think about the reasons why these things in my life are happening. I tell her how I feel, and she interprets them as we go along. She helped me understand my issues better, and I think I understand why I am the way I am. I was exposed to a larger truth – the truth of Self, which really helped me grow into a better person.
While I am not ready to call it "spiritual," someone I trust recently said he could see me becoming a recognized poetic voice in the western part of our state during my seventies. I have no illusions about fame and fortune as a poet...here, I nearly guffaw. But what I treasure is the great conversation that comes in and through poetry and people compelled to write it. And the chance all poets hope for to connect in the enterprise of being human. After some years of writing essays I filed away, I began writing poetry about 2007, having caught the bug after hearing Robert Pinsky read on public TV. I remember the suspense of hearing "Shirt." The cadence, the reach, the accessibility and, yet, the profound story of textiles so beautifully rendered. Oh, how I wanted to have such precision in crafting words put together in a way they sang a powerful story. So when my respected acquaintance shared his vision of my next decade, I received it as a vision loaned to me for thinking about my life now. Within days I would begin to feel it becoming my vision, too, a goal to ease into, but something to give me focus, direction and confidence. Finding my life again is perhaps, I reason, as spiritual as it gets.
On my last visit to California, I had the opportunity to slow down - to connect with my family, to see old friends, and to really take in the beauty of that place. I've always been so proud of having moved across the country, and on this trip I realized just exactly how much I missed California, and how deeply rooted in it was my sense of home. Sun, sky, green, mountains, and ocean together in one place are an amazing blessing, and they feed my soul.
I found my Hebrew name. Leah. August 22: I attended Saturday morning services for Mikaella Alston's bat mitzvah. As we chanted through the Avot, the words floated in my vision while my mind began to spin, and my heart fluttered. "V'elohei Sarah, elohei Rivka...Leah ..." a tingling of excitement and awareness grew as I thought about names I've always gravitated towards... Evie, Keely, Leila, Laila, Liu, Lei... Leah ... my Hebrew name?!? My Hebrew name! Only a week before, I chatted with the Rabbi about my journey as a Chinese American Jew, questioning whether I really needed or wanted a Hebrew name... After all, I have my Chinese name selected by my mother and an English name chosen by her father. We are named by those who come before us, and often become the essence of the name itself. But to have the experience of stumbling upon a name that resonates with who I am at this moment and to have the power to accept or deny that was a thrill. And a little scary.
I was at a clear, cerulean blue lake in the alps with my boyfriend, we were finally relaxing after a hectic foreign wedding. After a short hike to take in the view of the lake wedged between steep, green mountains we heard shouts and splashing. We navigated towards the sound passed a sign in German that translates to "Life Danger!" The lake had no shore, so we walked in the water along the edge until we reached a rock face that had a steel cable guide rail pinned into it. We scrambled up to find three Romanian teenagers singing American pop songs and drinking creme de menthe and beer. They were gleefully and drunkenly flying off the cliff edge on a rope swing and invited us to join them. After an unsuccessful rope swing attempt I had red rosettes popping up on my thighs where I had skipped across the lake. Ditching that concept, I was ready to try jumping off the cliff edge. Twenty feet below me, my love was waiting for me. My heart bursting out of my ears, everything tingling, I closed my eyes and kicked off. A mere second of wind whooshed by before icy water enveloped me in a cloud of clear bubbles. I felt safe, invigorated, lucky and loved. So, of course, I did it twice.
The satisfaction of having been incredibly productive, and knowing that I had worked hard and done my best last fall... I haven't matched it, but hope to have a similar surge this year.
Camp is always a spiritual experience for me. Sitting by the lake, singing with friends, and really feeling the music brings me to a higher place. One Saturday morning service, I sat behind the boy I was with and had the most incredible prayer experience. Standing on the stage above our participants and watching them holding hands, touching the boy I had immense feelings for, and singing songs that spoke to my deepest soul, that was an incredibly spiritual experience. After he and I broke up, I went to yoga in Boston. There was one class in particular that I attended in which I forgot where I was. We were in a pigeon pose and I lose track of all breath, time, space, and simply lost myself in my body. That was incredibly spiritual.
Read "The Boys in the Boat" and cried. So many feelings about Joe's comment near the end that he had to surrender himself to something bigger during the Olympic race. It resonated with me, as my own journey to God is marked with a similar experience. Surrender of my own desires and my own choices to God and what He wants for me.
The Guru Granth Sahib Ji honoured us with their presence in our humble home on a full moon. I am hoping this event brings new blessings for everyone. As well, I want this to be a reminder to me to stay in peace and love.
I learned to meditate. I learned to feel g-d again. I learned to feel joy and freedom again.
Yes, visit to Zagreb, Croatia brought back many reminders of time spent there 22 years ago and all G-d taught me that summer. It was my first big trip and alone and so connected to G-d. I need that back and feel called to live there and be a light in that country. I also started reading the Torah and opening up a new part of my brain and processing and learning. So much I didn't know and can't get enough of - crazy amazing!
At yoga, for sure. I often find myself really feeling how much love I feel for my family; being able to be in touch with my gratitude for the life I have. Services are another time when I feel spiritual - I like the routine, I like the prayers, the community, etc. I often feel like I am my best 'me' when I am at my synagogue.
In order to better understand the perspective of drug-users (especially that of my partner, and my drug-addicted sibling), I fearfully agreed to try them once. One morning I took a hit of acid, and spent the next 12 hours being led through parks and hiking trails all over the city. During this time I continually saw nature burst to life and then die, right in front of my eyes. Trees, plants, grass, foot steps. It was mystical.
This past year my spiritual journey has led me to feel that we need more peace in our lives. Whether that peace come from making amends with loved ones or friends or be it that peace comes from doing acts of charity. Peace truly is what we need to work toward as a people. I have found that for many of my extended family members they find it troubling and difficult to give peace to those they are unwilling to let go of. More specifically they are in refusal of giving my dad the peace he seeks to be able to leave this realm. He is young, and in him they see their own mortality, but he has not treated his health well and is therefore reaching the end of his time here. They cannot seem to grasp that and refuse his peace. I feel that this is important for all aspects. And we all need to work on peace in our own lives and in giving peace to others.
Seems like I wasn't getting spiritual experiences this year - but got heavily;y in to Dolores Cannon's books. I strongly resonate with the stories of other types of lives - but have no particular hit regarding my own possibility for these types of incarnations.
Yes I have had a couple I think, but I can only remember the most recent one right now. I don't consider myself to be religious, but I do consider myself to be spiritual. I consider spirituality to be believing in a meaning or purpose to life and a sense of connectedness to the universe. My most recent spiritual experience was alone in the outdoor shower at an Airbnb organic farm in the mountains in North Carolina...I don't know, there was something so magical about standing on the cold rough stones that made up the shower floor, having warm water pour over me, smelling fresh mountain air, with the crisp feeling of the pouring rain and the melodic sound. I felt a peace wash over me.
I went to the lake and watched the eclipse unfold until the clouds covered the moon. When the moon was in the full eclipse, I went and stood beneath the blood moon. I am filled with awe and appreciation. I have become entranced with noticing wonder, magic, miracles and now I see them everywhere. I will continue to look and continue to live in a way that invites those qualities to show up in myself and others.
Going to Italy on my own wasn't exactly spiritual, but there were times when I felt very zen, and very connected to something larger than myself. Seeing Michaelangelo's prisoners in Florence really brought alive the sense of what it means to struggle and fight yourself. Similarly, going to the mandir in Dharavi at the end of the fellowship was moving. It flooded me with memories and emotions from the two years.
When I missed my flight to Paris, which was my dream destination, I remained at Rome airport with swollen feet and no track of baggage. I have never been that anxious. It passed and felt I felt that there is no place like home. A similar feeling evoked when I saw the movie Margarita with a straw which made me extremely emotional. Also watching Hagia Sophia, Whirling Dervishes, Sistine Chapel and Colosseum was a breathtaking experience.
This question still evokes nothing in me. I'm aware of religion more and more. My work team is Muslim, Jewish, Christian, nothing. I learn more. I'm constantly frustrated at how anti-Muslim the world is. But this part of my life is not something that matters to me. The closest I come is each morning when I drive down the hill to Saltburn beach and I see the glorious sea side, the cliffs, the hay rolls, the beautiful colours that shift according to the time of day and how grizzly the north sea is. That's when my heart hurts with something that I can't describe.
My spiritual experience has been one of enlightenment. I have always been extremely independent, self reliant and terribly unwilling to ask for help. This past year having to quit my job to continue my education allowed me to see how good God is to me and how I have not had to worry, because he does make ways for us. I've learned to trust that he has control over my life. I have also learned that it is terribly difficult to maintain that sense of trust with the world all about us. Terrible how one loses ones sense of worthiness if one is not working. Feeling as though you have no control over your life, free falling and not ever reaching the ground, an endless fall.
Visiting ground zero and the 9/11 Memorial Museum. I have never had an experience so visceral...I could feel the shock, the fear, the loss of the beings who perished. When I saw the blue wall...the work of art that had blue squares to depict the sky that day, one for each who died, and learned that behind that wall were something like 8000 remains they could not identify....I sat down and sobbed.
I had a very strange experience at the beginning of this year where after watching the Oliver Stone Doors biopic, I became very curious about A. learning more about the Doors and B. finding out what from that movie was actually true and what was bullshit (i.e. Jim Morrison definitely never locked his girlfriend in a closet and set it on fire). The more I learned about them, the hungrier I became for a deeper knowledge. I was insatiable. I became obsessed, unwillingly. I walked through each day imagining them, imagining knowing them, thinking about what Jim Morrison was doing when he was my age and why wasn't I doing that now? I often pretended I was in the 60's, looking around at the old cars and strip clubs and phone booths. I imagined what Jim Morrison would think of our time, what music he would listen to, what books he would read. All I ever wanted to listen to was the Doors, and I felt Jim's pain as I listened, like his soul was inside me, remembering. For the first couple of months, I fought the obsession, actively trying to divert my mind to other things. After proving unsuccessful, I decided to just let go and be carried through that bizarre wave. There must have been some reason that my soul was craving them, some divine lesson I needed to learn through them. Being on the other side of it now, I can acknowledge that that phase really surged me forward as an artist. It inspired me to read more, first of all, because I wanted to be as well-read as Jim Morrison was so that I could write lyrics as well as he did. It also showed me that technically simple music can still be extremely sophisticated, and can sometimes reach your soul deeper than really complicated music can. Since then, the music that I have written has been quite simpler than music I wrote before I knew them, and I feel good about that shift. The experience also sparked in me the question of reincarnation. A dear friend of mine went through a similar Doors phase in high school and believes she was Jim Morrison in a past life. I admit (somewhat ashamedly) that I can understand and relate to that feeling. I would have felt a little silly going around believing that, especially because I'm sure there are MANY others out there who feel that way. But I, too, felt as though his soul was living in me for a time. And then I thought: what if reincarnation does not have to be such a set thing? What if instead of having lived an entire other person's life and that same soul living your life now, souls could just inhabit a person for a time and then leave? Imagine a time when you discovered a dead person's work and then had the insatiable urge to become immersed in it. Did that person's soul become a sojourner in you? Of course, there is no way of really knowing, and I have not in any way committed this idea as fact. But it is fun and comforting for me to feel that the souls of our ancestors are here now, guiding us, showing us what we need to see when we need to see it.
This has been a bit lacking in comparison to other years, honestly. We have joined a new church in Portland, which is good so far, and we've reconnected with some friends who also moved here recently and are deeply involved with organizing pilgrimages and interfaith dialogues and stuff like that. I only made it to Camp Cross for a weekend this summer, when the entire region was on fire, and experiencing camp as a smoky hellscape was unexpectedly distressing. I suppose one borderline-spiritual experience this year was hiking most of the way up Half Dome in Yosemite with college friends. My husband and I hiked as much as we could beforehand to prepare, and while the weather thwarted us from making it all the way up, it was quite an adventure. It was harder psychologically than it was physically (and it wasn't easy physically!).
The Elul retreat in San Rafael had the biggest impact on me. I was able to get back in touch with myself in a very deep way. It also showed me that I have such yearning to be whole and to live inside the divine all the days of my life.
No particular spiritual experience this year but I have found myself talking to God a lot more lately. I find myself talking or praying to God a lot because I need any type of help that I can get right now. I'm desparate for answers. I'm desparate for guidance! I need help!!! I don't know how I can do this by myself any longer. I need companionship and more friends! I need a girlfiriend to support me.....to love me and to be by my side when I need her. I need more good times with friends. I need to something to lift my spirits and my soul. I need a new job. A hobby to keep me entertained and busy. I need to really jump start my life and get something going for myself seriously. I can't live my life like this any longer! I need something to lift me up!
No. My spiritual valve has been turned off, sadly. But that also has to do with my food addiction. When I hold my cats I feel spiritual.
I have started to think more about death, and wonder, to be more scared and less so. A song about fireflies in a tent at a festival in Dorset, an unexpected moment of collective pathos, grief rising like sap on a spring morning. She said that fireflies keep on flashing and changing colour after they have died, so (though there will be a sound scientific reason for this) we just don't know, do we?
How funny to see this question! We just returned from a trip to Sedona, where we read about the supposedly spiritual vortexes. We visited one, at the top of the summit trail at the Airport Mesa. My husband, his cousin and wife, and I, closed our eyes and held hands, and while it felt nice, none of us experienced anything particularly special or spiritual. However, the view from there, as well as the many other beautiful views we saw while hiking and during our other activities, were awe inspiring, nourishing, relaxing, and energizing. That's spiritual enough for me.
Still attending church regularly; still volunteering with the church to provide meals to homeless people. It makes me feel like I am doing something to make the world a slightly better place, but also makes me aware of how much more needs to be done.
I haven't had anything particularly spiritual this year. Next year I want to go to Philly for Slichot again because I think that's the most spiritual I'll ever get. Katrina is agnostic and wants me to believe in G-d, but I'm not sure I ever will. Someone saying "you should believe in G-d" is not going to change anything.
Not really. :| I haven't really had a very spiritual experience in quite a while. It's a little distressing at times. I think something is out there, but I've lost connection with it...
No, and I am totally OK with that. I have had some amazing times and some not so amazing times and I am happy with that.
I think I'm becoming comfortable with my Judaism and not comparing it to anyone else's. Finally.
Really, the only spiritual experience I had was getting blackout drunk and making it home in one piece regularly. Really more time than I'd like to admit, and definitely more often than I should admit.
I have continued on my spiritual path, I still meditate daily and remain open to lessons. I feel that Louie is close to me and have had a number of contacts with him. Life makes sense and I do believe that I am growing...I wish I could have been open to this earlier in my life.
The spiritual experience that really stands out this year is the second day of Rosh Hashanna. We didn't have a minyan until about an hour and a half into services, when two men came late. I just had a sense of divine providence, that G-d willed we should have a minyan, and my concern that we would not was entirely misplaced. All I can do is show up, do the Mike-work and let Hashem do the G-d-work.
I have come to understand that if you don't seek out spiritual content and be in the presence of the holy, the "mountain top" experiences are few and far between. The realization that God is Love is a truth that despite experiences or not I choose to hold on to.
Facing the responsibility after becoming a godfather (to my nephew) has forced me to think more seriously about my religion.
I have had what I have come to call an evolving “existential crisis” for most of the year. After Danny the adorable doctor, I fell apart. I started taking anti-depressants and I managed to pick myself back up. Then I met Patrick. When that blew up, I went into my “I don’t give a fuck” phase. Basically, my emotions overloaded, tripping the circuit breaker and shutting down completely. I didn’t feel pain, but I didn’t feel anything at all. For months I avoided dating and even when I did date, I did so with no enthusiasm. That lasted until early summer during my trip to Vegas. That’s when, in a moment of jealousy and vulnerability, Todd told me that the men of E&A find me abrasive and “standoffish” and that they are afraid of me. This sent me into a weeks long crisis of self-confidence. I started to question how I interact with people. Worse, I began to question my relationship with the other people in E&A. I felt like a gate crasher at a party to which I had not been invited and wasn’t really welcome. It was weeks before I could socialize with other members of the club without feeling unwanted and self-conscious. I came out of that stage when I started hanging out with Edward but that, too, blew up on me and left me resigned. I am not sure where to go from here....
The barbell is my crucible. It teaches me all I need to know about myself and how I need to grow. I love it. I love learning new things about myself as I sharpen my fitness. It's a really deep experience. It only makes me stronger. When all else fails it keeps me going. Because I know I can do it. It has shown me the way.
I think the most profound experience this year was the Transitions Group I started and the way the group has developed. They are a support system within themselves. Some have made good friendships. We all participated in "The Intervention" at Catherine's. And, probably most moving was the completion of the Boundaries mural; creating it, building the frame,and hanging it in the lobby.
I built a sukkah and felt it was a religious experience--full of sweet, simple beauty and, in the full moon of an eclipse, quite magical.
I am constantly seeking spiritual growth and when I stop and pay attention I see Gd everywhere. When I don't I remain consumed by selfishness and material pursuit.
Sitting alone, in a small cafe, on the little rainy island of Naxos, as rain deluged down the streets and children splashed through the puddles was a very spiritual moment for me. Surrounded by beautiful food and lovely wine and tired, but wonderful, foreign-speaking locals, I found myself both so alone and so included in the beauty and reality that is life. It doesn't really sound like a spiritual experience....perhaps more of a reflective one.
Spiritual for me in the past year... I enjoyed the 5 day 9 event program at Ivory's Rock... Watching my son being born was spiritual... Overall a clearer mind and deeper meditation... Began working with the monk... Looking forward to India in January... Working with Sage to dissolve my mind.... That was intense good work...
I have in fact had a few deeper spiritual experiences. I've been practicing meditation and every now and then I manage to get into a state of a deep bliss that feels rejuvenating and energizing and I somehow feel connected to everything. The feelings are quite intense and last only a few moments, but nevertheless they have left me with the feeling of trust; trust that all I need is within me.
Since my papa died, I disconnected from my Judeism as I felt let down by G-d and faith itself. I am slowly trying to rebuilt my spirituality
Lots of little ones, really. Just my own decisions about what faith means to me. Deciding that to me any time I spend thinking about another person with love and compassion is an act of prayer. Trying to learn to be quiet in my own sadness rather than try and drown it out. I still struggle, because I would love to have a clear set of convictions to point to and I so admire those who do, but at least at this point in my life, I can't do that.
I began (and quit and began again) meditating. It had a profound effect on my moods and reactions to the rest of the world. It's so inherently calming and reflective-I love it. I appreciate what it's done for my focus and my ability to better navigate what I truly want. I also bought my first (second, if I include Nicole's photography?) piece of artwork for the house while travelling in the Yukon this September. It's a silly little sculpture of old pliers and tools made to look like a bird, but it makes me smile. It also makes me acutely aware of how very privileged I am in this world-I was able to spend $400 on a sculpture simply because it made me smile, and still make all my payments and not worry about food for the rest of the month. How could I possibly complain about my life after something like this?
The High Holidays have been very "spiritual." Joining the synagogue has been spiritual. The older I get the more I feel the presence of God.
- DMB concert - hearing two step, 1 sweet world back to back. - Death Cab concert - hearing presidents of what, bixby canyon bridge, cath Going to concerts, hearing my aboslute favorite songs live is such a moving experience. I feel "lightness" in my chest and heart when it first comes on. Then, I'm covered in sheer joy and excitement. It's an incredibly fun and nuanced feeling. - Marigold Kitchen bday dinner - there were several times during this dinner where I was telling myself "I can't believe I'm here. I can't believe what I'm eating. This is heaven on Earth - so take it slow, and enjoy every bit of it." I tried my heart out to do that. Some negative thoughts tried to creep in too, "...you don't deserve this, you're lucky to be here, you're going to get a panic attack..." But, I recognized those upper limiting thoughts, and said, "hey, it's all good. This is my birthday dinner. I work hard. I have a loving husband who adores me and wanted to take me to a bucket list place. Life is pretty damn good, so keep enjoying this meal!" - The continuous eye opening experiences I've had of late: - the concept of boundaries - the fact that we're moving, and our time out here is limited - etc.
Although I don't consider myself a spiritual, let alone religious, person, I have become more open to the positions held by people of faith over the past year. In part, this is due to the refreshing positions taken on many important issues by Pope Francis. I continue to find wonder and inspiration in a wide range of settings, especially the wilds of nature and the pumping bass of parties (or both in the case of AMF!).
the only spiritual experience I had this year is that I have come much closer to my whole being
The vision I received in the dark hours of Easter morning was profound (& remember, I am Buddhist). It has completely transformed my Life. I carry Shakti/Sophia energies with me everywhere now as a result.
I think being close to museums in the city has rekindled how much I love seeing art and creativity around me. It's been amazing to go to MOMA and just be with some of the work there. Gives me goosebumps.
The whole love affair with S. was spiritual, even though it didn't work out in the end. Being with someone who was so spiritual and the fact that we shared a past in Swaziland made the story between us magical and otherwordly. I was so upset it didn't work out and at the same time relieved I didn't have to be in that stressful mindspace anymore, where I was so unhealthily in love, constantly distracted, really love sick and upset the whole time, because I knew we didn't have a future, yet I just wanted to be with him. And the fact he was so Christian - I found it very hard to deal with and at the same time the fact that he believed in something so strongly attracted me to him. It was a spiritual amour fou... The whole visit to Brussels was a spiritual/cultural/magical experience. Very healing and inspiring in so many ways - the skateboard park in the empty office building, drifting through streets with Monica, the rooftop party with the young pretty people and balloons, meeting the doc filmmaker and being taken along to the filmmaking class and even being bullied by 9-year-olds (which wasn't great at all) added to the strangeness of the whole stay
Discovering the existence of shaved guinea pigs, and naturally bald guinea pigs. This makes me happy
See answer to Q1.
in the last year i have embarked on a "spiritual" journey. i had become so disconnected with myself...and so dependent on outer validation. i've taken time to learn about midfulness and meditation, as well as read books from byron katie, brene brown, and eckhart tolle. i've changed what information i take in...listening and reading materials on more spiritual topics. i think that it has softened me as i was quite cold and abrupt. i was terribly judgmental which i think was actually just an outward sign of my inner insecurities and fears. i've learned to use and trust my intuition as well as to take the time to learn/understand the "other person's side' of situations. i am kinder.
I wrote about the birth of my granddaughter Ada for previous questions, but it applies here. Even more, after Ada's birth, her mama (my daughter) cradled Ada in her arms and said to me, "Now I understand how you feel about me." (subtext: and why you're so annoying, always wanting to see me!) I hold on to that moment when tensions between my daughter and me begin to rise. Everyday gratitude for sunshine, beauty, people, joy has become more intentional for me and happens more and more often. The grace and thoughtful responses of congregants at Linden Ridge always touches me spiritually.
During the Blood Moon/Lunar Eclipse in September, I did a ritual. It was the first time I felt empowered and at peace in a very long time.
I'm not sure if I've had a particularly spiritual experience. I feel like sometimes I go to services and they feel deeply meaningful and rejuvinating. Like when I've had a long week, it's important to focus on something outside myself and get in the spirit of shabbat. I don't think that one experience has been very spiritual
On this golden fall day, I am sitting in an empty beach house hearing the waves break. My husband, my daughter and her family, my son, my dear son-in-law's relatives -- we all enjoyed our yearly 2-week rental out here on Fire Island. They all left an hour ago, leaving me in peace and quiet to straighten up and close down the house before I go home on the next ferry. The summer is over, a new baby has been born to the family, and my husband and I are most definitely another year older.
a visit to Israel which was culturally rejuvenating and a reminder of my roots
Believing I was going to die was weirdly spiritual. Even though I wanted to live, I felt at peace with myself and with God. It wasn't about anyone else. It was very quiet and private and intimate. And then I didn't die and I still don't know what that means or what comes next.
Yes, I have felt spiritual growth this year, which is something that I wanted last year. The loss of my mother one year ago has caused me to reflect on my life, her life and our mutual values. I value the closeness that I feel with her, still now.
Poopy died in my lap?
My husband coming home to me alive. Being in bed together not knowing if he'd ever come home to me or be the same again. My friends really stepped up to support me by watching my daughter, lending me money, hugging me while I cried, listening to all my stories... knowing I matter to people on such a deep level let me know that I really have a place in this world.
Not really, but music continues to have a huge and magnificent impact on my life. Maybe, if i'm lucky, Mass Effect Andromeda will make for significant a bunch of philosophical questions as its predecessor.
My spiritual experience is that I've nearly given up on all things "spiritual". My life is planned to be free of all things artistic and cultural for the time being.
I've been bringing my Jewish beliefs in line with opening myself to the love that God and the universe has for me. I've been enjoying reading Marianne Williamson's book on The Law of Divine Compensation and looking to bring those spiritual teachings into my life. I make sure to begin each day stating out-loud something I am grateful for. And one other moment -- while I don't get to do it enough, I have found attending shabbat and other services on the beach to be incredibly powerful and healing.
I have a hard time connecting to my spirituality, particularly through religious experiences--I have struggled with this a bit, particularly as someone who works in a faith-based community and is seen in so many ways as a "model Jew". It's been especially hard to connect in that way being away from home--the high holidays have been particularly tough the past two years as I've struggled to find the right services to attend and the right people to spend them with that will make me feel at home. Going home for Rosh Hashanah was such a good decision--even if I didn't feel spiritually enlightened, it felt good to be home with my family and be back in the place where I spent the holidays growing up, so I could feel the warmth of tradition if not the glow of spirituality. My most spiritual moments happen in nature, in Israel, or when I'm meditating--I actually led guided meditations for two groups this year and both were great experiences. Even though they're not so much about my own spirituality, it's a powerful thing to feel like people are placing their own spirituality or vulnerability in your hands, and trusting you to guide them. I got really positive feedback both times, and it felt great to know that even where I have trouble connecting myself, I have the power to help create that for others.
Dance- spending a summer at B&P has been incredible. I feel like I got to access a side of myself that was hidden or locked away for a long time. I felt inspired and happy and free. Also our Kabb Shabbs have been so amazing and such a time for me to recharge and find joy in the beauty of Shabbat.
This past year (summer 2014) I got my cards read by Alicia's mom. Naturally, because it took over a year for me to see the how the predictions are manifesting I didn't think it was going to come true. #1 - She predicted that I would go through a period of heartache and pain but I would end up coming out stronger. I guess this correlates to my rejection from school and the end of my relationship with Joe. #2 - I will meet a kind, caring, and generous man. I think this man might possibly be Ismael. This warms my heart because for a while after we got back together it seemed like Joe was making an effort to be nicer and more considerate but that turned out to be a farce. #3 - I will reach a goal that I have been working hard towards. I attribute this to me getting into PA school. I have been fortunate enough to get another shot so I hope to do better in the interview this year!
This has been a year of answered prayer. Big prayers, little prayers. Daily, there are answers all around me. I have come to realize just how important my spiritual life is to me. The other spiritual realization has been that, without intending to be disrespectful, God is pretty funny. Last year, my dear Boxer friend, Marge died of bone cancer. I love dogs and have always had a small dog and a large dog. The loss of Marge was really tough. So, I asked. I always do. I asked God for the right big dog, at the right time and in the right way. And now I have Dexter a 2 yr. old 165 lb. Harlequin Great Dane. I asked. And then I received. Effortlessly. He is a wonderful friend. He is also 165 pounds. So sometimes, I go outside, look to the sky and say,"Funny, God. Very funny."
I am not sure about this.
I just started taking yoga classes again and was surprised by the feeling of peace afterwards. I feel very present during class and clear minded.
Yes. Every day. I actively trying to be more prayerful. I am quite taken with the idea of the daily examen, when I reflect on when I have felt God's presence throughout the day. I find that they are in moments when others have bestowed me with a pure kindness--when there is no ego in it, no desire to be recognized or congratulated--these are the moments that move me to tears and leave small stitches in the torn parts of my soul.
Not that come to mind at this moment, however, I often feel spiritually connected in a variety of circumstances, hiking, connecting with a friend, laughing, many moments with my son (even sharing a laugh), hearing a moving story -- this week about a woman who was at Bergen-Belsen when she was 8 years old, months before liberation, and who gave a pregnant woman her chocolate, and the baby born, now grown gave chocolate to her years later when she was speaking. That story inspires me to feel grounded to this earth, my birthright home; and to humanity, my brothers and sisters; and to life itself, the great gift. It also connects me to my religion, which is my heritage, which I honor, and to God, perhaps not as deeply as home, humanity, and life, however, I often believe that the overwhelming sense of connection to home, humanity, and life itself is God's presence, that God is why we are, be it spirit, or science, or both, or more. God manifests in our deep desire and instincts to survive and thrive until our breath runs out. And in hearing that story, I felt incredibly sorry for her experience in that horrible place, and incredibly grateful and happy that that young 8-year old girl, and that baby, survived.
Yes! Though it is more of accepting that I do in fact have a spiritual side that needs exploring. Having the Prayer Meditation and Spirituality group has been very helpful, as has opening up to the idea that my path may at some point lead back to organised religion. HMMM.
Nothing in particular actually and that's a shame.
My dearest friend who had a wonderful and full life died. We spoke of this growth in our lives on occasion and the grief of a friend on the other side of the telephone not being 'here' was surpassed by friends who appeared.
My most spiritual experience is listening to my children breathe. I try to do it every day.
Can going to Disneyworld count as a spiritual experience? It was 7 days where I felt like I was living a different life in a different world where absolutely nothing went wrong and I had no serious worries and I could get lost in an amazing, beautiful, magical place with people who care about it as much as I do and who love experiencing it with me.
It finally clicked that God is real and that life has meaning. I'd been reading natural theology for a long time now- several years- but I'd been agnostic about it. Finally when I was reading a rather basic book, it all clicked. God is real, He designed the world, and there is meaning to human life. It really makes such a difference when you have an intellectually sound ground upon which to base your outlook as opposed to just intuition or feeling. It all made sense. And it's nice to have that.
The same answer as for Answer 1: My elderly brother has a cognitive disability and lives far from me in a group home. Due to his health and both our finances he can no longer travel to see me. As he has gotten older, and his friends in the house have gotten dementia or cancer, my brothers life has gotten so small! I've tried a lot of things to give him a full life from a distance, and recently arrranged for him to join a church. It turns out that a woman who was like a cousin to us growing up is a stalwart member of that church - and now my brother has a new community, and re-established ties to our past. I am so grateful that these "cousins" have appeared to help my elderly brother remain social, active, and spiritually involved in life beyond his group home. I tear up every time I think of it. When I cry, I know that truth has been told. I also believe this experience is one of the things that makes my life meaningful, and gives me hope that the mercy of a loving God is being employed.
Sharing a honey apple cake on rosh Hashanah and celebrating Hanukkah with David was nice to share that part of my heritage with him. Conversely it was nice to be included in their Christmas holidays. And also the pope coverage was interesting to see how ppl of all faiths came together over it
I feel like I'm doing my best to do a good job at being a good person. What is missing is joy.
I took more to the desert than I ever have before...more time, more art, more of myself. And I left EVERYTHING there...I was still LNT though. I burned the remnants of my relationship in the Man, I scavenged nothing, left the Temple to its own devices and left the dust blowing in the wind. I also found East Jesus, and will continue to grow through that spark in the desert for years to come.
Weather and music are often profoundly spiritual, as is the call to prayer on Kaballat Shabbat. Preparing for Tashlich, though, was a highlight. The synagogue in my new city doesn't do Tashlich, so I said to a new friend that I would just do it on my own. One thing led to another, and we were about 8 people on a pier in the St Lawrence. It was really special.
Making the decisions about taking care of Shea as she was affected more and more by the tumor, and then to end her life and see her through to smoke and ash. Keening. Feeling her memory. Missing her constancy and her physical presence.
I love my travelling, so I always experience spiritual moments when doing this. I have been to Everest Base Camp in Easter this year, and that was by far the most spiritual and awe inspiring trip I have done. I loved being there and my soul was happy. I returned to HK 2 weeks before the devastating earthquake that shattered that country. I then was in Brazil for 4 weeks and had a gorgeous time in the Pantanal and the Amazon.
I think that my experience that has been particularly spiritual was the realization that I am able to both acknowledge and see my thoughts, particularly after I graduated my master's program and when I enrolled in the depression study. This was eye opening because I had not realized how paralytic my depression and anxiety had been, or how power it was, to the point that it denied me the ability to see my own feelings. This moment was transformative, in that in all of my years of psychotherapy, this was a moment that I was actually present, that I was able to hear myself think, and that I didn't need an individual person to prompt reflection and self review. Instead, I began regularly checking in with myself and managing my feelings beyond just responding to dissociation with reality; I actively thought about what I was experience and with some regularity (at this point) considered the greater impact of these feelings on how I operated on a day to day level. This was essential to my personal improvements. The mikveh - I think that my feelings about this will continue to evolve, but after I returned from the mikveh experience, I certainly felt much more clear headed and prepared to enter the Yom Kippur fast. I can't fully explain it, but I certainly feel very interested in see how this impacts the coming year.
Every time I'm having a difficult time missing my parents who died within the last year of oneanother, I see signs and believe they're reaching out to me energetically. Sure, maybe I need to believe this to heal without being totally destroyed- but some of the signs are just too unexplainable-I ask myself, "how many miracles do you have to have happen to believe?" These are definitely spiritual experiences of the deepest kind. My job often has me rising with the sun and these moments happen are deeply connecting to where I feel my father's presence I am unexplainable way. I give thanks and am grateful as these moments are profoundly heart opening.
This is dorky and fairly recent, but I was moved to tears by the opening procession of a local stage production of "The Lion King." It's rare for me to cry, but I was overwhelmed the beauty of this collective human effort. I love that we as a species are so relentless about making art and telling stories.
Not that I can think of? I've been itching to get back into Wicca, but haven't done anything about it. Finishing the edit input pass on Shivering Deeps was pretty cool, but I wouldn't call it a spiritual experience. I've got nothing.
Not really... bad year for spiritual experiences I guess.
I have a spiritual experience every night when I put my little man to bed :) I sing him Hindu hymns, and he's starting to sing along a bit. I really feel it brings us peace in that moment, and there's nothing else that matters. I love it.
Oh man. Well this is the year my dad passed away. We knew a few months in advance, so we were able to be by his side. It was an amazing ride. And altering. It was very spiritual and gritty and real.