It’s not the absence of conflict but the absence of a question.

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When I sit in nature, a familiar feeling washes over me. That feeling is peace. I know that many others feel this too. At first blush, you might think that nature provides us this relief because we experience a respite from the chaos and frenetic energy of electronic life, social media, and interpersonal conflict.

But nature is not always “peaceful” either in the sense of being calm or slow. Trees can sway perilously in the wind. The rain can hammer the earth. Nature can be violent. Does that mean it is also not peaceful? …

Planet Soul

If we don’t, we won’t create a more harmonious world

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Imagine that you are looking to heal spiritually, only to have someone you trust abuse you with unwanted contact. Imagine you belong to a spiritual community, only to have the teacher you revere speak in a language that alienates you. Imagine you are hoping to connect with others on a similar path, only to find that spaces of healing are closed to you.

Spiritual communities have shadows, just as individuals do.

The shadow is the side of ourselves that we reject, loathe, and suppress: Nasty things we’ve done and are often ashamed of; the people we’ve betrayed or abandoned, mocked…

They are easily co-opted by the ego

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A call to abandon words? Perhaps I’m being melodramatic. But 5 words have become so commonplace in spiritual writing that I think we ought to pause and look at them with a discerning eye.

Why? They can unwittingly lead their speakers to reinforce their negative egos. Used without care, they operate like trojan horses, carrying within them the seeds of judgment and separation that spirituality is meant to heal.

I don’t mean to cast aspersions at writers who use them; I’ve used some of them myself. Consider this article a call for us all to be a bit more rigorous…

When these happen, you are opening to a deeper undercurrent to life.

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You’ve heard the word “awakening” many times, and you may be wondering, Am I experiencing one? Is this a spiritual awakening?

Spiritual awakenings come in many forms. Some are subtle, like the gentle rising as the light grows in intensity outside, chasing away the darkness. Others are dramatic, like a thunderclap, jolting you out of a deep slumber. (I’ve experienced both.)

These are the ways that your soul is trying to pry open your mind so that you can shed certain ways of seeing the world and expand your consciousness. The universe conspires to bring you experiences so that you…

The more you integrate them, the deeper your connection to God.

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No list of spiritual principles can, on its own, help you to feel a deeper connection to God. But without spiritual principles, life on the spiritual path can feel like a journey where you’re stumbling around without even so much as a compass, much less a map or a guidebook.

Each of us must make the journey to the divine inside on our own. These are not, then, a fixed set of practices for connecting with your higher self or a higher power. Nor do they provide a normative template for how to behave.

Bereft of prohibition or command, they…

Here are 7 steps to consider as you embark on your spiritual path.

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If you’ve experienced a spiritual awakening, you’ve come to see that you are much more than what your senses tell you about you and the world. Whether through meditation, energy healing, plant medicine, or some other modality, you’ve realized that you have a more profound connection with life than we are led to believe in our everyday lives.

Now, as you embark on this journey with newfound fervor, you may be wondering where to go from here. After all, this is not the well-worn path of religion, with its clear dictates and sources of authority. What’s next?

I offer some…

Why didn’t I sign up to be a celebrity or supermodel this time around?

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A dear friend and fellow spiritual writer and I were joking about the contracts that our souls signed for our respective lifetimes. We both have been deeply enmeshed at times in the material world — she in business, me in law — and yet have felt the call of the soul to pursue a different path.

“Can I just be honest? Why didn’t my soul just sign up to be a celebrity or a supermodel this time around?”, I asked, expressing a little ennui at the demands of spirit in my current lifetime. My friend laughed, commiserating.

I went on…

Let’s honor the parts of us for which there are no words.

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How often have I stood there, wondering if I am actually seen? By “seen,” I do not mean whether your eyes register that I stand before you or next to you, as a fellow human being. I mean, Do you really see who I am? Even there, the word see fails me.

That is, indeed, what language does all the time — it fails. It does not fully capture what we are trying to express. It misses the mark.

This failure happens most frequently when we use words to say who we are and what our identity is. We use…

Black History Month

We are on the cusp of a historical and political shift.

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The morning after the Senate run-off in Georgia, when that the Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff had won their respective races, a thought flashed through my mind: Now is the time for reparations.

Perhaps for the first time, with the public’s consciousness around race galvanized by the movement, a government led by Democrats could conceivably pass H.R. 40, the bill advanced for decades to commission a study on reparations for African Americans. …

It offers a deeper path to wholeness

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I was on Kauai, the Garden Island, on retreat with my teacher. We were working on my heart chakra, to release an intense fear of persecution from a past life in which I had been betrayed by my community. Suddenly, a massive swelling of fear erupted between my second and third chakras and plopped out. The relief was instantaneous.

Some months later, just outside Sedona, surrounded by miles of desert, I screamed at God at the top of my lungs, “Why do you keep sending me back?” The day before, a shamanic practitioner had performed a soul journeying ceremony with…

Patrick Paul

Author of works of spiritual wisdom, intuitive for emotional blocks, channel for divine guidance. .

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