The statistics I read tell me that 80% to 90% of people on the earth believe that there is “something” out there greater than themselves: some sort of “Higher Power”. That means that, if you’re reading this, the chances are your belief is similar.
In my experience as an ordained minister, I don’t find that many people often act on that belief, and I think that’s to their detriment. Folks I’m not talking about religion here. I attend a church called Unity. I used to be what they would call a “Conservative Evangelical,” and believed that there was only one way to believe. All who didn’t believe that way were doomed to an eternity in hell. I no longer accept that, and actually don’t believe in hell anymore.
Unity is a place where I can go, believe what I want, and they encourage that. They don’t ask me to change. My ordination is with a group called “Spiritualist,” where we believe you can choose your own concept of a Higher Power. I am trained in Evangelical Christianity, having a Master’s of Divinity from an Evangelical Seminary, however my beliefs have changed, based on my experience.
If you believe in something greater than yourself but don’t actively engage in a relationship with it, then I’m going to give you a 30-day challenge that could change your life. You see, prayer and meditation changes things. Whether or not the prayers you send out get “answered” or not, is not the issue. Prayer changes you when you engage in it. Studies have shown that prayer and meditation quiet the mind and help to center you.
Are you a busy, task-oriented individual like me? Then I suggest you take at least a few minutes in the morning to just sit quietly. Try it in the evening as well, before you go to bed. You may think you’re too busy, and that’s ok. Just remember the words of that great monk Martin Luther who was responsible for changing the face of the Christian religion: “I have so much business I cannot get on without spending three hours daily in prayer.”
Light some candles, burn some incense. I light candles and burn “smudge”, a native practice that I’ve borrowed which I find very soothing. Find your own routine, and try to include reading spiritual and/or self-help literature. Try meditating too: mindfulness meditation seems to work for me.
In the weeks to come I’ll share more about what I do, and about what you can do, in this blog. Check back each week for a new instalment. Next week I’ll share with you my own personal routine, and – as my mentors always say to me – you can take what you want, and leave the rest!