Today we have many sophisticated diagnostic tools available to help us determine our bone density, the iron content of our blood, and even the functional capacity of our internal organs. We even have tests to measure our depression, our tendency toward bipolararity, or ADD. However, our level of spiritual health is rarely, if ever, examined. Because we are all spiritual creatures having an "embodied" experience, it would make tremendous sense not to overlook what is the permanent and eternal aspect of our true nature. After all, our emotional and physiological health really falls under the umbrella of our spiritual health.
So how does one go about a spiritual self-examination to determine the vitality of our God consciousness?
There are three tests we can perform to discern the level of our spiritual health, or the health of anyone else for that matter. Surprised? Don’t be. We all came to the Earth to engage in what Socrates called the great "know thyself" quest, and to know thyself consciously as a spiritual being is the best that quest gets!
The first thing we want to examine is our perception. This is going to be a bit more challenging than the "turn your head and cough" exam you had in high school gym class. The results depend on how honest we are willing to be about our internal dialogue: what we tell ourselves about our relationship with divine love, and our value, power and worth. As the great Swedish mystic Emanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772) used to say, "You do not have love…you are love." Love is not a possession. Love is not separate from who and what you are. Love is not earned; it is embodied. There are no issue hurtles that determine if we are finally deserving and worthy enough to be loved. We do not have love, we are love. Deserving and worthy have never been an issue, unless we make it an issue with what we do with our perception.
Although we have a body, we are awareness. We do not have awareness, we are it. Furthermore, our awareness is our divinity. It is the part of us that is eternal and unchanging. Our awareness is the part of us that feels it never ages. Therefore, whatever we give our attention to is what we infuse with our God energy. How healthy you are spiritually depends completely on:
How much attention you give to the truth about your divinity
How much separation you make from the tyranny of your own ego, and the lies it fabricates out of ignorance and the need for self-preservation.
Swedenborg used to say that being spiritually healthy was a matter of remembering and forgetting. Remembering to give your attention to the Truth and forgetting everything else. Forgetting all the puritan work-ethic programming, forgetting your own self-perpetuating stories of unlovable and inept. Forgetting everything that does not align itself with the Truth that you do not have love…you are love! For the sake of this mutual sharing we are going to define Heaven as a place or state of being that is unlimited, and hell as a place or state of being that is limited. Swedenborg suggests that we give our attention solely to what resides in Heaven. Should we find ourselves entertaining something limited with our attention, Swedenborg suggests we put it down, forget it, and give our attention back to heaven. When we surrender our awareness to what lives in heaven, our spiritual health is unlimited. When we give our attention to what lives in hell, our spiritual health will immediately become extremely, extremely limited.
How much of the time do you practice owning your divinity and giving your attention to heavenly things such as good faith in life and love, and respecting yourself as a force of love? Do you see yourself as reaching enlightenment the fastest most efficient way you can, to the exclusion of all other stories? If you do, this also will tell you the spiritual health of your free will. Each of us decides where we go with our attention. Divine love and wisdom saw fit to give each person sovereignty over his/her own mind. How much attention you freely surrender back to Prime Source will tell you the health of your free will, or what Swedenborg called your "ruling love."
The second litmus test for spiritual health is the relationship test. How healthy are your relationships? Remember honesty counts! Every person on the planet is God consciousness. We do not have it, we are it. Because all of us are an expression of God consciousness, how we treat other people is how we treat God. You can take all the vitamins you want, eat healthy, fresh foods, exercise regularly, drink plenty of water, sleep eight hours nightly, but if you go through your day criticizing yourself and others, finding fault and blame in yourself and others, intimidating, disrespecting or bullying others, gossiping from a mean-spirited heart, or withholding help and compassion from others, then you are deeply spiritually unhealthy. Disenfranchising God consciousness is a spiritual illness, and the primary symptom of this malady is unhappiness.
Conversely, someone like Christopher Reeves can be in a wheelchair, neurologically damaged beyond repair, yet, still be incredibly spiritually healthy, because of the quality of his love and generosity of spirit. The great love teacher, Jesus, encouraged everyone to be spiritually healthy when he asked us to love our enemies and treat others as we would want to be treated. Dannion Brinkley, in his powerful, best-selling autobiography, Saved By The Light, talks about being struck by lightening and being clinically dead for more than 30 minutes. Dannion frankly discusses his experiences on the other side and the panoramic life review that awaits us all. He describes having to feel the impact he had on all his relationships as the primary educator of his and everyone’s soul. Because we are all connected by Prime Source, what we do to another, we have done to God. There is simply no getting around this as a determinate of how spiritually healthy we are.
This brings us to our last test – our last self-examinational procedure. God consciousness is very creative. God created the heavens and the Earth. God creates something from nothing. We are here on Earth to create enlightenment from ignorance. Healthy God consciousness is creative. When we are spiritually healthy we are creating a new response to old issues, and growing beyond them. Unhealthy God consciousness recreates the old issues: the limited suffering over and over again, without breaking the cycle, without expanding beyond the grasp of unhappiness.
Take a step back and objectively look at your life. How often are you recreating your old issues? You know the old, outdated sources of suffering you love so much to indulge in: worrying, telling yourself you’ll never be happy or truly loved, building a monument with your awareness to how there is never going to be enough time, love, money or opportunity. Ask yourself how often you are recreating these stories, these perceptions. How often do you reach for the worry drug of choice and justify the addiction? How often do you defend your existence as rejected, alone and miserable? Giving your attention to these issues consistently produces results that guarantee your unhappiness, yet you still find yourself drinking from this cup. This dysfunction is unhealthy God consciousness habitually recreating its limiting issues, beyond the point of reason or usefulness.
No one can lament an abandoned life of rejected loneliness and, at the same time, know that they do not have love, they are love. No one can be experiencing themselves as incompetent, incapable and a loser, and, at the same time, know that they do not have value, power and worth; they are value, power and worth.
No one can be recreating a limited story and be creating a new response to it at the same time. It would be a contradiction. No one took a body and came to the Earth to build a monument to crap and self-delusion. We all came here to realize that we are Divine love and absolutely nothing else!
If you practice being creative, you are strengthening your Spiritual health. All of us have mastery over anything only after practice. If you practice being creative, simply for the sake of being creative, you are practicing aligning yourself with the intelligence you need to create enlightenment. If you practice being creative for the sake of being creative, you will have the skill when you need it, because you have practiced cultivating it. Without some relationship of practicing responding to life creatively, how will anyone be able to create a new response to old, ingrained responses?
Recreating our issues over and over again ad nauseam is to align ourselves with fear, and there is unquestionably nothing Spiritually healthy about that.
Like any other form of health, we come to the Earth to practice right relationship with it. Spiritual health can always been improved with loving attention. The good news is there are no insurance premiums, no gym fees to pay, no restrictive diets, and no personality tests to fail. Spiritual health is every being’s birthright. All we have to do is claim it, live it, share it, and shine on!