Everyone is brought up believing that they are going to have the best life possible and that “happily ever after” will be your life. Our generation, especially, must thrive on positive thinking. Even during a recession and the ever-crumbling economy, most people still think that the future is bright and everything will be ok. Does positive thinking mean that just “thinking” like that will make all the difference? Does it mean that you can be faced with a bad situation and all you must do is think positive? Yes, thinking in a positive way will give you the confidence and hope to stand up again, face the world, formulate strategies and move forward! But a person needs to have the faith and hope and actually move forward. The person cannot just hope against hope that all will be OK and magically his life will turn around. It does not work like that.
You need to face the situation, accept the reality, and positively think that you can conquer this adverse phase. The power of positive thinking is tremendous. It gives you the motivation, faith and confidence to move on and face the world. It does not mean you will be faced with only good phases in your life but when faced with a challenge, thinking positive thoughts will provide strength and courage to look and walk confidently ahead. It is not always easy to focus on the positive especially when you are down in the dumps. It is easier said than done when you are faced with a challenge, but during such times, try focusing on all your previous achievements.
A sundance brother recently asked my views on the differences between religion and spirituality for possible inclusion in his doctoral thesis. An interesting question, I thought, as the common assumption is that religion is spiritual, that the two terms are interchangeable, even synonymous. To question that is to ask if religions actually lack a true spiritual foundation. This is not only a large topic, but borderline heretical in some circles. To do it justice requires an exhaustive study of the teachings and actions of literally every known religion and every nonreligious, but spiritual practice, including an extensive lexicon, all of which are well beyond the scope of this article and capacity of its author. But so what, let’s consider these two phenomena anyway through the device of some admittedly homemade definitions, loaded with limitation and opinion.
As I see it, all religions throughout time and throughout the world, are human-made constructs that attempt to define some higher power, both temperamentally and attributively, in what are essentially self-serving terms. From this, a hierarchy usually evolves, what we call a “clergy” in this country; professional social engineers. Another common characteristic of corporate religion is to impose itself at large, and sometimes violently as witnessed in the Inquisitions prosecuted by the Catholic Church spanning some 600 years, to the recent exploits of the Talibahn in Afghanistan, to a number of Christian churches gleefully acting as Indian reservation agencies in the late 1800s US. The inconsistencies here of preaching love while advancing war or trampling other cultures under foot are not at all limited to these religions, either.
The Pews of History are filled with heroic tales of religious wars, religion-promulgated, influenced, or condoned imperialism to the lesser sins of religious chauvinism, to innumerable ethical scandals. I think it’s fair to say that virtually all religions have exceeded the bounds of their legitimate purpose, whatever they might claim it to be. How many nations associate themselves with a particular brand of religion, even today? More than we might realize. Some overtly in their constitutions; England and the Church of England, Israel as a Jewish State, and Iran as an Islamic State.
In order to address our nature as spiritual beings living in a material world, spiritual counselling is required. In fact, spiritual counselling connects us to our source of existence as a way of alleviating our outlook of disconnection or separation. This helps many of us to pursue lives of peace and satisfactioninstead of getting misguidedand distracted by things that divert us from the reality.
While no culture can claim a monopoly for spirituality, it can be safely asserted that the unique vastness and steadiness of Indian culture can be traced to her matchless experimentation, discovery and accomplishment in the gigantic field of spirituality.
In fact, the impact of eastern tradition and culture could be well seen amongst the western
New York……the city that never rests, a city that is full of life and vigour where people from all across the globe work relentlessly to seek materialistic happiness. Little do they realize that in the pursuit of materialistic joy, they are losing out on some very important aspects of life. In fact, such alife-style seems to draw out the nectar of lifeand life seems to become a burden. This is when people start seeking a life where they could achieve mental peace, contentment and satisfaction. This is when spiritual counselling is required.
Spiritual counselling may at the outset seem to involve renunciation of materialistic desires. However, this is not the case with spiritual counselling. In fact, on the contrary, spiritual counselling allows us to find true meaning and purpose of life which makes the attainment of success much easier and satisfying. In other words, those who find true meaning and a spiritual balance, help others to uplift their lives and potential for success and true happiness.Spiritual counselling can be done through various methods of meditation—comprising the use of positive thinking, mantra, and spiritual chanting.