Spirituality vs Religion

To contrast religion vs spirituality gives us a clearer understanding and appreciation of spirituality. The main differences of religion and spirituality lie in the traditional areas of doctrine, rituals and morality. All religions have these three basic components: 1) doctrine or beliefs; 2) rituals or ceremonies; 3) morality or a set of laws governing conduct. It is in these areas that I will make the contrast of religion with spirituality.

Doctrine Versus Experience

Religions have a set of teachings which all members are enjoined to believe in. If a member believes differently and teaches others to do so also, he or she is labeled as an unbeliever and may be excommunicated or put out of that religious group. Thus Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism and other religions have a different set of doctrines. In the religions oneness of doctrine is of paramount importance.

In spirituality while there are certain teachings these are not emphasized so much as personal experience. Spiritual persons may be members of different religions but they have the same or similar experience. Christian mystics focus on the experience of union with the divine. So do Hindu or Muslim mystics. They may differ in the means of attaining this union with God but they agree that this has to be experienced as the goal of their spiritual life.

Rituals Versus Intimacy

In religions there are certain rituals or religious ceremonies meant to express human relationship with the divine. In Christianity we have the sacraments and the religious services like the Mass, preaching service, worshipful singing, etc. In certain religions this is so important that a person is obliged to perform these rituals as a means of salvation, like the ritual of baptism.

In spirituality the emphasis is not so much on these rituals as a personal intimacy with the divine, usually attained through personal prayer and meditation, activities which in a sense are the opposite of rituals. Rituals are done in a crowd or group of people. Meditation is usually done in solitude and silence.

You can see now that there really is a contrast between religion vs spirituality.

Morality Versus Compassion

Religions produce a set of rules to follow. This is usually expressed in written laws and oral traditions. Thus the Catholic Church has a Code of Canon Law. The other Christian churches have written policies or a system of precedents. The Muslims have the Shariah Law. The Hindus have their own laws, particularly the laws which regulate their conduct in their respective castes. After a while the tendency is to increase the number of laws and to codify these.

In spirituality the central focus in human conduct is on becoming compassionate to all of creation. I was about to write "love" instead of "compassion" in the sub-heading. But over the years the word "love" has lost much of its real meaning. In almost all seminars, conferences on spirituality compassion is accentuated as the most important attitude required of human beings toward creation. This compassion begins with realizing our oneness with the divine and with all of creation. It is not just a matter of feeling but is expressed in actions of kindness towards all we meet, human beings or other parts of creation. The tendency in spirituality is to simplify the laws, just like what Jesus did, reducing all of them into two: love of God and love of neighbor.

The question I would like to pose is: Which do you think is better, religion or spirituality? My opinion is that both are necessary to human life. Religion functions as a cement in human culture. But with the recent ongoing studies on spirituality we are going to see an increasing number of men and women who are becoming more spiritual rather than more religious. Perhaps churches which have lost their active members, as in certain areas in Europe, can  shift their focus from religion to spirituality and give meaning in life to more and more people.  Religion vs spirituality will increase the awareness of more people to learn more of the enduring values in life.

Here are my other blogs which may be of help to you:
for your spiritual growth

for your health

for learning about the new trends around us

for earning some income from the Internet

Here are your links to download the e-books for FREE. To download a copy of A NEW CHRIST by Wallace D. Wattles click this website To download a free copy of A NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle click this website I hope that you enjoy reading these free e-books and profit much from them, as I have also profited greatly from them.

My 10 Most Favorite Spirituality Quotes

Over the years I have accumulated spirituality quotes. In this post I am publishing 10 of my most favorite spirituality quotes. After each quote I give the source and after the source I write why I like such a quote and how relevant it is to my life. It may also give relevance to your life and so it can help you in your quest for a deeper spirituality.

Of course I have not put here words from the sacred books, either Christian or non-Christian, like the Bible, the Qur'an, the Tao Te Ching, the Tipitaka of Buddhism, etc.. These books contain sentences which are not really meant to be my favorite ones. They are meant to be essential food for my soul.

1. For You who are the Absolute Being of all things are present to each thing as if You were concerned about no other thing at all. (from Nicholas of Cusa, De visione Dei or About the Vision of God in the translation by Jasper Hopkins).

I like this quotation from Nicholas of Cusa, a Roman Catholic Cardinal who lived in the 15th century because it tells me that God is concerned about me as though I am the only other person in the universe. As a proper response to this I consider myself and God as the only beings in this universe.

I want to tell you that God is concerned about you as though there were no other person in the whole universe but you. Such is God's great love for you that for him you are the most important person in the universe. Your value is infinite before God. Rejoice!

2. He who has You, 0 Lord, knows and has all things. He who sees You has all things, for no one sees You except him who has You. (Again from the same book of Nicholas of Cusa)

I like this quote because it tells me that I have all things in God. This has been taught again and again by the manifestors who teach the law of attraction. I have all the abundance in the world. I am infinitely wealthy in God.

Do not consider yourself poor. Consider yourself rich and your thinking will open to you opportunities to manifest this richness which you have in God.

3. In order to arrive at having pleasure in everything,
Desire to have pleasure in nothing.
In order to arrive at possessing everything,
Desire to possess nothing.
In order to arrive at being everything,
Desire to be nothing.
In order to arrive at knowing everything,
Desire to know nothing.
(from John of the Cross, ASCENT TO MOUNT CARMEL, as translated by E. Allison Peers. John of the Cross is reputedly the Prince of Mystics.)
I like this spirituality quote because it tells me about the paradoxical character of being all, having all, knowing all. This is attained by being nothing, having nothing, and knowing nothing.

This is the best advice I can give to somebody who wants to be somebody in life: Become a nobody and you will be a somebody. This is very true and yet its truth cannot be known unless you experience it. All genuine spirituality passes through this paradox, becoming nothing to being all, possessing nothing to have all, knowing nothing to become all wise.

4. At the evening of life, you will be examined in love. (from the Sayings of John of the Cross)

I like this quotation from John of the Cross because it tells me that all spirituality revolves around love. As Augustine of Hippo I think said, Love God and do whatever you please. Love summarizes all the motions in spirituality.

If you love you have found yourself.

5. For all the evil in the world comes from ignorance of the truths of the holy writings in their clear simplicity, of which not one iota shall pass away. (From Teresa of Avila, Her Autobiography).

I like this statement because it tells me that all the evil in the world is caused by ignorance of the truth. Therefore as I share the truth with others to that extent I am lessening the evil in the world.

This places upon you the responsibility of knowing the truth. As you know the truth and share it with others you contribute to lessening the evil in the world. But I notice that most of our teachers are not really teaching the truth, they teach ideas that have been handed down to them by other teachers or by books.

6. The power of attention can be more readily understood by comparing it with a sun glass in which the rays of sunlight are focused — they possess no particular strength as long as the glass is moved about and the rays directed from one place to another; but let the glass be held perfectly still and let the rays be focused on one spot for any length of time, the effect will become immediately apparent. So with the power of thought: Let power be dissipated by scattering the thought from one object to another, and no result is apparent; but focus this
power through attention or concentration on any single purpose for any length of time and nothing becomes impossible. (from Charles F. Haanel, The Master Key System).

I like this statement because it tells me that the reason why my thinking before had no power was because it was spread across so many objects of attention. But once I concentrate it on one thing then it has got power like the magnifying glass burning a piece of paper.

You may want to discipline your thinking so that you can focus it on one thing and you will attain whatever you think of.
7. In other words, when we free our minds from all thoughts of debt and try to realize more and more the presence of plenty, we shall soon be strong enough to reach out and realize abundance for our debtors. As they are lifted up from the thoughts of limitation and lack, they will attract more and more substance with which they can pay their bills. In this way, and only in this way, can debts be permanently canceled. (from Raymond Holliwell, Working with the Law)

This statement really surprised me. I did not know that the secret to abundance was in the prayer Our Father. And the reason why our economies are failing is because we are so heavily dependent upon debts.

Why not try this method of forgiving all debts owed to you? It can only lead to abundance to you personally and to your former debtors.

8. You are here to enable the divine purpose of the universe to unfold. That is how important you are! (From Eckhart Tolle, reputedly the most spiritual man living today)

This means that each one of us is part of a great divine plan. If we fail in life the failure is a failure of this divine plan. That is why it is most painful and most dreadful to fail.

You are a divine being because you came from a divine being. Claim your right and behave accordingly.

9. You'll See It When You Believe It. (from Wayne Dyer, reputedly the third most spiritual man today, this is a title of his book)

I like very much this statement because it tells me that believing is a kind of seeing. Believing is not making oneself believe what is not true. It is seeing the truth.

If you have spiritual vision you will always believe.
10. This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness. (from Dalai Lama, reputedly the second most spiritual person in the world today)

This statement sums up the true religion of all genuinely spiritual men and women. If we only adhere to this kind of thinking we would not burden people with building huge and small churches which only feed the ego of the religious leaders and their members.

If you adhere to this kind of thinking you will certainly make this world a better place to live in. Genuine spirituality is the way to a brighter future.

So there you are with my 10 most favorite spirituality quotes. There are others of course which have also made an impact in my life. But these 10 seem to give me the most impact. Later they may supplanted by other quotes, but for the present they are my 10 most favorite spirituality quotes.

Here are my other blogs which may be of help to you:
for your spiritual growth

for your health

for learning about the new trends around us

for earning some income from the Internet

Here are your links to download the e-books for FREE. To download a copy of A NEW CHRIST by Wallace D. Wattles click this website To download a free copy of A NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle click this website I hope that you enjoy reading these free e-books and profit much from them, as I have also profited greatly from them.

Simplified Spirituality in the Workplace

Spirituality in the workplace has been a topic that is more and more talked about. It has now become a trend. The reason for this is the change in the situation of work we are in. Many no longer find security in their work. They can be replaced by machines. Many are also finding work as merely mechanical, posing no challenge to them. They get bored with their work.

Advantages of Infusing Spirituality into Your Work

When you put spirituality to function in your work you will find out that your work assumes a new meaning. It is no longer boring, no matter how repetitive it is. If you really hate your work spirituality will raise your vision to another work where you can find joy and fulfillment.

Secondly, you will realize that your work has a lasting value, even extending to eternity. In a sense you will be sending your work ahead of you so that you can build not only a better tomorrow but a more enjoyable eternity.

Thirdly, with spirituality in your work you will radiate happiness around you, your boss and your co-workers.

Infusing Simplified Spirituality into Your Work

I once went to a printing company to have a book printed that I was editing. At exactly 9 in the morning all work ceased and there was a reading of the Bible broadcasted by public address. All employees of that printing company paused from their work to listen to the sharing about the biblical passage read.

I learned later that this was a daily practice in that company. It was its way of infusing spirituality into its employees.

There are other ways of infusing spirituality in the workplace. Here is my suggestion.

First, realize that your work has an invisible dimension. You are using energy in your work, either mental or physical energy and energy is invisible. You only see its effects.

Secondly, acknowledge that this energy has its source in Infinite Energy who is also called Spirit or God or Allah by people depending on their religious affiliation.

Thirdly, you thank Infinite Energy for enabling you to share in his energy.

Fourthly, consider your work as a channeling of that infinite energy flowing in and through you.

Finally, talk with this Infinite Energy as often as you can. Ask him to be a better, more creative worker, more harmonious with others around you, whether human beings, animals, plants or what people call inanimate things like nails or hammers.

These steps are very simple but when you perform them consistently every day, you will find that you will have less stress in your work and you will enjoy it better. And if this work is not what the Spirit intended you to do on this planet Earth, he will guide you to the work destined for you so that your work becomes a means of happiness and joy in your life.

That is what is meant by simplified spirituality in the workplace.

Here are my other blogs which may be of help to you:
for your spiritual growth

for your health

for learning about the new trends around us

for earning some income from the Internet

Here are your links to download the e-books for FREE. To download a copy of A NEW CHRIST by Wallace D. Wattles click this website To download a free copy of A NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle click this website I hope that you enjoy reading these free e-books and profit much from them, as I have also profited greatly from them.
Spirituality and Practice

Spirituality and practice always go together if your spirituality is genuine and relevant to your life. There is no such thing as spirituality that remains theory or just in the head and does not go down to your hands and feet.

There are many spiritual practices such as the practice of being kind to creation of whatever kind, visible or invisible, plant or animal or human, or inanimate; meditating; contemplating; believing; hoping; loving, etc.

What is important is that you choose a spiritual practice and focus on this for some time until it becomes part of your flesh, blood and subconscious and lifts you up in your journey to ever greater union with the Spirit. In this way the practice helps you lighten life's load as you live on this planet Earth.

Criteria for Choosing a Spiritual Practice

There are three basic criteria for choosing a spiritual practice: need, desire, and leading of the Spirit.

The first question to ask is: What is your spiritual need at this present time? You think that you are not so confident with your work. So you need the practice of believing or faith. Or you think that you have the tendency to be dishonest and this is bothering you now. So you need the spiritual practice of telling the truth or acting honestly.

The second question is: What do you desire in your life in order to progress in personal development or spiritual growth? The answer to this question may be the same as your answer to the first question or may be not. You may answer this question by saying, My desire now is to be more confident with my ability to perform my work. In this case the two questions have the same answer.

But there may be cases when the answers are not the same. You feel you need more faith but you think that you desire to know why you got to this point in your life when you lack faith. In this case the spiritual practice you desire is to meditate on your past life and trace the path to your lack of faith.

And the third question you need to ask when selecting a spiritual practice is: What practice does the Spirit inspire me to do? Again the answer to this question may be the same as your answer to the first and second question but it may also be different. The Spirit may inspire you instead to be compassionate with others because in this way you gain confidence in your work and progress faster in your spiritual journey.

Taking into account these three basic criteria you ask the Spirit which of the spiritual practices he wants you to take up as your first choice. But do not just ask this question. Go first to what you need and what you desire because usually the Spirit works through these areas of your life.

How to Know When You Have Integrated the Spiritual Practice

If you are faithful in your spirituality and practice there will come a time when you will no longer consciously perform this practice. It shall have become second nature to you or part of your personality. This is the time when you have already integrated it in your life and then you can go on choosing another spiritual practice.

Going back to our example, there will come a time when you become more and more confident with yourself that you shall have automatically developed the mentality that you can do all things that is given to you to do. Paul the Apostle reached this stage when he wrote, I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

When you reach this stage in your spiritual practice, choose another practice which you can develop. It may be the practice of hoping for better things in your life, or some other practice.

There Is No End to Spirituality and Practice

Yes, there is always a spiritual practice which you can choose to develop. You will not lack spiritual practices to develop, even in old age. As you grow old you will need the spiritual practice of enjoying more the life you will live after you depart from this planet Earth. Enjoyment of this life hereafter while you are still physically present here will give you strength to carry on the remaining days of your life with ever greater vitality and joy.

Spirituality and practice always go together. As you grow in spirituality you will also develop more and more spiritual practices which will make your life more meaningful and more enjoyable, and more helpful to others.

Here are my other blogs which may be of help to you:
for your spiritual growth

for your health

for learning about the new trends around us

for earning some income from the Internet

Here are your links to download the e-books for FREE. To download a copy of A NEW CHRIST by Wallace D. Wattles click this website To download a free copy of A NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle click this website I hope that you enjoy reading these free e-books and profit much from them, as I have also profited greatly from them.

Spirituality for Kids

If I had known spirituality for kids when I was a kid I would have gotten more out of life than what I now have. I would have been more happy, more alive, more creative in the first 55 years of my life. As it turned out it is only in the last 10 years of my life that I have more fully enjoyed the things of the Spirit.

If you are still a kid, you are fortunate in being offered here ideas which can certainly make your life more happy, more alive and more creative. If you are no longer a kid you can use the ideas here to help your own children or those of others to learn and enjoy the wonderful spiritual realities.

Spirituality for Kids

Spirituality is that quality of life wherein a person has a direct and beneficial relationship with unseen realities. These unseen realities range from the electrons flowing through our electric wires to the winds in our environment, from the electromagnetic waves passing through our radios, television sets, mobile phones, to the movements of stars beyond our galaxies, from the ideas in our brain to the ideas stored in libraries, magnetic devices and in the cyber world, from the spirits of our ancestors to the all pervading Spirit who fills the universes with his power, wisdom and goodness.

The child, from infancy to the age of eighteen, can have a meaningful and beneficial relationship with these spiritual realities. How to lead a child to this relationship is what I want to share with you in this article. These are only general guidelines.

The Beginning and End of Genuine Spirituality Is Love

The Spirit loves us. That is why he brought us into this world with the life that we have. Some have the life of heavenly bodies, others have the life of stones and minerals, others the life of vegetables, still others the life of animals. We were given the life of human beings. It was love which brought us human life. And love is our end, our final destination, the union of love with this Spirit who brought us into existence.

The child needs to feel that indeed it is love which brought him into this world.

So begin cultivating spirituality for your kid by loving him. Loving a child begins with talking to him from the time he is conceived. Direct thoughts of love to the child in your womb or in the womb of your wife. Say words, even just in your mind, like 'I love you. I will take care of you. I will make sure that you come out of the womb safely'.

Do not think that because the child is only a fetus that it cannot feel the love in your words. The child is already part of the spiritual realities from the time of his conception and is affected by what we think, say or do. Spiritual vibrations are already emanating from us to the child in the womb. And if we listen carefully we can also understand the vibrations from the child to us.

When the child is born you can immediately commend him to the Spirit who permeates this universe. There are churches which dedicate their children to God. Some do this instead of infant baptism. You do not have to wait for the rite of dedication or baptism to commend your child to the all wise, all good and all powerful Spirit. Say something like, 'Eternal Spirit who brought this child into existence, I offer you this child. Let him grow knowing you, learning more and more of your ways, loving you.'

Refer the Needs of Your Child to the Spirit

Provide for the needs of your child the best way you can, always asking the Spirit what is best for him. This applies to the food, clothing, shelter, health and education of the child. If you want to impart a life of spirituality to your child you yourself needs to have a meaningful, constant, and beneficial relationship with the Spirit. Talk with the Spirit about this child. He alone knows what is best for your child.

Teach Your Child to Read and to Love Reading

If there is one thing I owe that is unique to my parents it was their teaching me to read and to lead me to love reading. They were the ones who taught me how to read, so that even before I finished Grade One I already knew how to read and in fact was teaching my classmates how to read.

Reading puts the child in contact with the ideas of other men and women. These ideas come from the Spirit who inspires these ideas in the writers.

Do not rely on the teachers in school to teach your child how to read. If you do this they may grow hating to read because my observation is that most teachers do not know how to teach their pupils to read. Most students grow up reading only what is assigned to them in class. And they do this with unwilling hearts. They prefer to do other things than reading. A spiritual child loves to read and read because through reading he interacts with spiritual realities.

A New Start

I am very fortunate in that last year, 2011, I was given a new child, actually a grandchild, but the mother gave the child to me from the time of birth. And even before birth I accompanied and supported the mother morally and financially in the pre-natal checkups. So I consider him my own direct child.

Now that I know more of spirituality I am able to practice nurturing spirituality in this child. What I wrote here is something that I practice with this child and it is working wonderfully. The child is growing physically and spiritually, that is, in love.

These are some of my general guidelines I am sharing with you so that you too can nurture spirituality for kids. Love them from the beginning of their life in the womb, refer their needs to the Spirit, and teach them to read. They will surely grow as loving children.

Here are my other blogs which may be of help to you:
for your spiritual growth
for your health
for learning about the new trends around us
for earning some income from the Internet

Here are your links to download the e-books for FREE. To download a copy of A NEW CHRIST by Wallace D. Wattles click this website To download a free copy of A NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle click this website I hope that you enjoy reading these free e-books and profit much from them, as I have also profited greatly from them.

How Spirituality Promotes Health

It was only late in life when I realized the relation between spirituality and health. In fact this realization came to me only when I understood that spirituality and religion are two distinct realities, that is, only within the last ten years of my life and I am now 64 years old.

So far most of the studies on the relationship between spirituality and health have focused on how to apply the concepts and practices of spirituality to patients, especially those with serious and terminal illness, like advanced stages of cancer. Almost all of these studies conclude that spirituality does help patients cope with pain and death so that many of them do recover. They do not discuss the relationship of these two concepts in healthy persons. In this article I share with you my thoughts on why spirituality helps us to live healthy lives so that we do not get sick most of the time. I hope that this article will help the healthy person see the dynamic relationship between spirituality and health so that he or she can enjoy life better and longer.

A Brief Description of Spirituality

For our purpose here I define spirituality as simply a person's relationship with the spiritual world, the unseen world of powers which are greater than ours. Spirituality is familiarity with this unseen world.

Some have a very low level of spirituality, almost non-existent. They are not aware of this spiritual or unseen world. They think that only those things which can be perceived by our five senses and reason exist.

Others have a very high level of spirituality. A few even live as though they are spirits. They sense this spiritual world in the same way that they perceive things with their five senses. This world is too real for them to be denied. In fact this world influences all their thoughts, words and actions.

In between these two groups of people are those who are struggling with spiritual issues, persons who admit of a spirit world but they are still trying to understand it.

How Spirituality Helps Us Stay Healthy

Just as the mind or soul directs the voluntary motion of our body, so also the spirit directs the activities of our mind or soul which activities mostly consist of thinking and acting.

It is the mind through our brain which directs our body what to do. Take the mind or soul from the body and the body does not move. When this separation is permanent the body can no longer move, is dead.

In a similar way it is the spirit which directs our mind or soul what to think and how to act. A person with a high degree of spirituality follows the leading of the spirit what to think and how to act.

For most people they do not follow what their spirit leads them to think. Their thinking is either reactive or slavish. They either react to the effect of other people on their lives or they just follow what others want them to think, just like slaves.

Reactive thinking is thinking that contradicts what others say. If they tell a person that he is a coward the reactive thinker will think that he not a coward and may prove this to these persons who call him a coward.

Slavish thinking is just following what others want the person to think. You find slavish thinking before television sets and in classrooms. Most of those who gaze at the television screen imbibe the values projected there. Most students just follow what their teachers want them to think in the hope that they can get passing grades.

The spiritual person follows the leading of his spirit in his thinking, not what others want him to think. Nor does he react to what others say about him. He listens to his spirit and then he thinks what his spirit wants him to think and act accordingly.

No one is more concerned about our health than our spirit. The reason for this is that for our spirit to function normally and effectively he needs a healthy mind in a healthy body. So this spirit leads us to think only of thoughts that produce a healthy mind and healthy body. He knows what is the best food, the best exercise, the best recreation, the best reading materials for us. He will direct us to shun junk foods which are very common nowadays.

So if you want to stay healthy and fit, follow your spirit as he tells you what to think. This is the dynamic relationship between spirituality and health. It is dynamic because it is a relationship which gives power (dunamis in Greek) to live a healthy life.

Here are my other blogs which may be of help to you:

for your spiritual growth

for your health

for learning about the new trends around us

for earning some income from the Internet

Here are your links to download the e-books for FREE. To download a copy of A NEW CHRIST by Wallace D. Wattles click this website To download a free copy of A NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle click this website I hope that you enjoy reading these free e-books and profit much from them, as I have also profited greatly from them.

Tips for Reading Scriptures for Inspiration

Here are my tips for reading Scriptures for inspiration. We can indeed read the Scriptures in such a way that our minds and emotions are stimulated to a more intense feeling or activity, that is, we are more inspired to do the things we are doing. These tips are not many in the hope that you will easily remember them. Following these tips I expect that you will no longer or will seldom experience depression and you will have alacrity in anything that you undertake.

The Experience of Being Inspired

If we are normal and have reached the age of puberty there comes a time in our life when a person of the opposite sex inspires us in our work. This person is always in the background of our thoughts and feelings inspiring us to do our work better and faster. Some call this the extension of falling in love. It is normal and it is the experience of a budding love affair.

What this experience tells us is that love inspires us to do better or to accomplish greater things. It is love that brings inspiration to our life. It is also love which enables us to find inspiration in the Scriptures.

Tip 1. Consider the Scriptures as God's Love Letter to You

This tip is not original with me. I heard it from Eliseo Soriano, the Presiding Minister of the Members of the Church of God International in one of his radio broadcasts. He was asked one time how he was able to memorize the whole Bible. The following was his answer, as I heard it then.

He said that when he was studying high school he would put under his pillow the love letters he received from his girl friend. Before sleeping he would read these love letters. After some time he memorized them. Then he reasoned: 'If I memorized the letters from my girl friend, why don't I memorize the love letters from God himself, the Bible?' Thus began his adventure of memorizing the whole Bible.

The Bible indeed contains God's love letters to us. Like any other love letter it tells us who is this who is courting our love, how he loves us to the extent of suffering and dying for us, and how happy we would we in our life with him. When we consider the Bible in this way it becomes the chief source of inspiration for our life and work. We go about living with a flame of love in our heart for the greatest suitor in the world, and we do all our activities for love of him.

Tip 2. Read the Bible in a Conversational Manner

Since the Bible contains love letters addressed to us personally, we reply to these letters as we read them. We can do this mentally only or we can also write down our reply in a journal. I do both. When we do this we notice that our subconscious will be trained to hold this conversation even when we are not reading the Bible. We will carry on this conversation as we do our daily activities. This is what is meant by walking with God. He becomes our constant companion, conversing with him always. And as a companion he never misses to inspire us although he also allows us to suffer for him and others. Thus you will really be reading Scriptures for inspiration.

Tip 3. Read the Song of Songs Again and Again

This is the book in the Bible which explicitly talks about human love. The mystics have always considered this book as a picture of God's love for us and our love for him. A characteristic that is unique to this book is that as we grow in the spiritual life this book becomes dearer and dearer to us. You may not understand the images used there. Do not try to understand them. Just feel the passions alluded to by the words and phrases there.

As you follow these 3 tips the whole Bible takes on a different color. What to others is simply great literature or a code of conduct or an arsenal of verses for defending one's own church doctrines becomes for you the most beloved book of your life, the one which gives you hope that at the end of time you will see yourself wedded to the most beautiful, most handsome, the wisest, the best and most powerful being of all, God himself. This is described in the last book of the Bible, the Revelation.

Those are my three tips to reading the Scriptures for inspiration. Follow these and you will never want to be without a Bible both in your heart and in your pocket, as I also do.

Here are my other blogs which may be of help to you:

for your spiritual growth

for your health

for learning about the new trends around us

for earning some income from the Internet

Here are your links to download the e-books for FREE. To download a copy of A NEW CHRIST by Wallace D. Wattles click this website To download a free copy of A NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle click this website I hope that you enjoy reading these free e-books and profit much from them, as I have also profited greatly from them.

How to Conquer Your Enemies Through Kindness

You can conquer your enemies through kindness. But first we need to ask why you should conquer your enemies.

Why Should You Conquer Your Enemies?

Having enemies is one of the facts of life. If you do not have an enemy it is possible that you are living an abnormal life. Jesus had enemies. And he said that if we follow him we also would have enemies. We cannot be unlike him if we follow him.

But having too many enemies is not good for any of us. Nor is it necessary. We can turn some of these enemies into friends. By turning them into friends we have conquered them. So you need to conquer your enemies because having too many of them would indeed make your life unnecessarily miserable.

Enemies Who Will Always Remain Enemies

However there are enemies whom we can never turn into friends. They will always remain enemies. Satan and his demons will always remain our enemies. Fortunately Jesus has already conquered them by his cross. We only need to gather the spoils from them.

The same applies to the group or class of human beings who are openly agents of Satan and his demons. In the time of Jesus these were the scribes, the Pharisees, the Sadducees, the leaders of the Jewish nation. Jesus never befriended these classes of human beings. He pronounced woes upon them. But he was always kind to individuals who belonged to these groups but who believed in him, like Nicodemus who was a Pharisee and Joseph of Arimathea who was a Jewish leader.

Following Jesus we can never befriend classes or groups of human beings who are openly also enemies of Jesus. In our present time this would refer to cults or organizations whose sworn objective is to destroy the institutions of genuine Christianity, like the worshipers of Satan. But we need to be kind to individual persons in these groups who are sincerely seeking for the truth.

How To Conquer Your Enemies Through Kindness

Having clarified who are the enemies whom you should not conquer through kindness, there are still plenty of enemies whom you can conquer through kindness: the neighbors who seem to always annoy you by throwing their garbage near your lot, the classmate who always depends on you for help in his homework, the relative who meddles in your family affairs, etc. These are the enemies whom you can win over by kindness.

Think Well of Them

There is always some good thing you can think that they have. Maybe it is their desire to be clean, to excel in their studies, to help sincerely. Whatever it is think well of them, find something good that they have to think of.

Speak Well of Them to Others

Nothing destroys friendship soonest than speaking evil of them in front of others. This is backbiting. But if you speak well of them before other people, they will later change their attitude towards you and they will also be kind to you.

Do Good to Them

If you do good to your enemies they will sooner or later reciprocate. I still remember the time I gave a five cent coin to a classmate whom I considered to be a possible enemy. As a result of my giving him this coin we became friends for life.

When I was taking up graduate studies a classmate of mine became an enemy because I did not obey his suggestion not to buy an electronic calculator. He wanted to do mathematical calculations by solving them on paper, not by using any machine, and he wanted me to do just like him. From the time I bought a calculator he always avoided me and never talked to me. But I continued doing good to him.

Pray for Them

Last but most important of all, pray for your enemies. More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of, said Lord Tennyson. When you pray for your enemies you will draw them nearer to the Spirit who unites us all. In due time this Spirit will make us one in our thinking and working. This is what happened with Stephen who prayed for his persecutor Saul in the story we read in the Acts of the Apostles. Saul later continued the work that Stephen left off because of this death. I can only imagine that when Saul who later was renamed Paul entered heaven Stephen was there to welcome him with a very big smile on his face, his murder by Saul forgotten forever.

You can conquer your enemies through kindness by thinking well of them, speaking well about them, doing good to them, and most especially by praying for them.

Here are my other blogs which may be of help to you:

for your spiritual growth

for your health

for learning about the new trends around us

for earning some income from the Internet

Here are your links to download the e-books for FREE. To download a copy of A NEW CHRIST by Wallace D. Wattles click this website To download a free copy of A NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle click this website I hope that you enjoy reading these free e-books and profit much from them, as I have also profited greatly from them.

How to Experience Growth From Other People's Misfortunes

You and I can experience growth from other people's misfortunes. You and I have come across misfortunes in our life, some personally, others by seeing or hearing about these in the life of others. If it is a misfortune which happens to us personally, we may just say, Better luck next time. If it is a misfortune that happens to somebody else, we may simply mutter to ourselves, Too bad, that is what life is all about.

Few of us take the opportunity of intentionally experiencing growth from the misfortunes of other people. But misfortunes can help us grow. It is easy to see that misfortunes that come to us personally do give us lessons in life: to be careful later, to prepare for eventualities, to be faithful to the church, to our family, etc. But we seldom pause when we hear about the misfortunes of others and think of how these can help us grow in our life.

Growth is Shedding Off and Accumulating

That growing is a matter of shedding off and accumulating is most easily seen in the physical aspect of our growth. We know that the cells in our body die, some after a week, others after a year, and are replaced by new cells. We shed off the old cells and we accumulate new cells which in the course of time are themselves shed off and replaced by new ones.

Mental growth is also like physical growth. We leave off old ideas which we have acquired in earlier days and we acquire new ideas to help us live in the present. When we were children we really thought that the sun rose in the morning and set in the evening. Then in school we learned that this only appears to be so, the real truth is that the earth is turning around its axis.

We grow also in our skills. As children we did not know how to type. As we grow we learned typing and later we learned to type on a computer and to process data. Some older people do not want to grow in their skills. They do not want to have anything to do with computers or mobile phones.

We also grow emotionally. Where before we only have I.Q. or Intelligence Quotient, now we have E.Q., or Emotional Quotient. Some children have the habit of crying at the least provocation. When they grow older they shed off this habit and try to behave maturely, crying only when there is a real reason to be sad about.

We also grow spiritually. Again this involves a process of shedding off and accumulating new insights in the spiritual life. Many children were trained to fear God. As they grow older and experience the love of God they shed off this fear and realize God is not such a fearful person.

How Other People's Misfortunes Help Us Grow

We can experience growth from other people's misfortunes only if we take time to reflect on such misfortunes and relate the insights we get from this reflection to our life. Whether the misfortune is minor such as bumping on a glass door or serious such as death, we can always reflect on such an event and experience growth through this reflection. We shed off old ideas and old feelings and accumulate new ones.

Growth in Understanding. We can reflect on the cause of the misfortune and grow in our understanding. We become wiser. A friend of ours who habitually smokes gets cancer of the lungs. Now we really know, not just from hearsay, that smoking does cause cancer and we become careful in inhaling the smoke spewed out by other people. We get rid of old ideas like smoking is fashionable and does not kill and get hold of the new idea that smoking does cause an early death through cancer.

Growth in Empathy. We can feel what the people who experience misfortunes feel, not exactly as they feel, but in our own way. Doing this we grow in our feelings. Some people harden their feelings as they grow old. We are not supposed to do that. As we grow old in years, our feelings are supposed to grow in their clarity, depth and refinement.

Growth in Compassion. This is related to growth in empathy. But the emphasis here is not just feeling the way other people feel over their misfortunes. As the etymology of the word indicates we suffer with them. We take steps to alleviate the suffering. Maybe it is providing food for children on the other side of the globe. Maybe it is entertaining a neighbor next door who has lost a member of the family. When we help, we grow in our compassion. We become more and more like God who is all compassionate. The hardness in our heart is taken away and a softer heart is given us to grow with.

Growth in Love. This is the highest level of growth, to grow in love. It means not only caring for others. It means that we realize that all of us are joined by bonds that are stronger than any ties we can think of. This comes from reflecting that the misfortunes which befell other people are in a sense misfortunes which befell also on us because they and us are really one. In a sense we get this insight more easily from reflecting on misfortunes than on successes such as in a victory of a game. Experiencing this insight we can truly understand what John Donne said in his poem NO MAN IS AN ISLAND, that we do not ask for whom the funeral bell tolls because we know that it tolls for us. We die with each death of other people. We shed off our old self to take in a newer self. This is growth, real growth for us.

We can experience growth from other people's misfortunes by reflecting on them. Through such reflection we grow in understanding, in empathy, in compassion, and most especially, in love.

Here are my other blogs which may be of help to you:

for your spiritual growth

for your health

for learning about the new trends around us

for earning some income from the Internet

Here are your links to download the e-books for FREE. To download a copy of A NEW CHRIST by Wallace D. Wattles click this website To download a free copy of A NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle click this website I hope that you enjoy reading these free e-books and profit much from them, as I have also profited greatly from them.

Scriptures For Confidence - Messages For Improving Yourself

Are you looking to the Scriptures to give you confidence? Are you searching for messages there for improving yourself? Maybe you do not feel confident in conversing with others, in addressing a crowd, or in attempting to do something. You feel your palms are cold and your knees seem to shake when you face people. There is hope for you from the Scriptures.

The Root Cause of Lack of Confidence

The root cause why we lack confidence is because we do not have a genuine, real knowledge of ourselves, or some would say, a good self-image. We do not really know ourselves. Once you know who and what you are and are thoroughly convinced of this knowledge, you will have all the confidence that you need.

Our family and teachers have the tendency of inculcating in us a false knowledge of ourselves. Most of them have drilled into our consciousness that in order to be of any value to the world we have to go to school, to obey our parents and teachers, to read books and study well. The list can go on and on. They built into our consciousness a poor self-image. They do not tell us that even before doing all the things they tell us to do we have already an infinite value, one that is greater than all the universes created or possible to be created.

But once we know ourselves as God knows us we will have all the confidence in the world.

A Way of Life, Not a Matter of a Few Verses

You may have thought that memorizing some verses which would bolster your self-confidence and recalling these verses when you feel to lose confidence would be the cure to give you confidence in what you say or do.

There are so many verses which you can use for this purpose but they will not give you constant, increasing confidence, one that grows organically with you.

You cannot have a confidence greater than that which is in God himself. God is absolute confidence. This is because God can do all things, except to contradict himself.

What I suggest is for you to take up a way of life such that you always have this confidence and you grow in this confidence. As you grow in this confidence you will constantly improve yourself, because you know you can improve yourself.

Genuine, Real Knowledge of Ourselves

Before I thought that in order to know myself better I have to study my physical, mental, and spiritual composition, my heritage from my parents, my tendencies, my idiosyncrasies, etc.

I found out that this way of knowing myself will only make me inward looking and make me more self-conscious and thus lead me to lose self-confidence.

The path to genuine, real knowledge of ourselves is the path that leads to the perfect person. Knowing more and more of this perfect person is knowing more of ourselves because whether we know it or not, whether we acknowledge it or not, our real self is in him and in him alone. This perfect person invited us to learn of him in Matthew 11:29. And the reason why our real self is in him is because he created us and he alone knows us best and if you are a Christian he lives in you. Learning more of him then enables us to know more of ourselves. As we learn of him he teaches us who and what we are.

To accept this invitation in Matthew 11:29 is to engage in a lifestyle in which we constantly learn of Jesus and learning more of him we know more of ourselves and knowing more of ourselves we believe more in the capacities put there by the creator himself.

The two more verses which I want to mention here are also statements of Jesus himself. The second verse is taken from Matthew 19:26, that with God all things are possible. The third verse is from Mark 9:23 where Jesus says that all things are possible to him who believes. The second and third verses will simply operate in your life if you live out the first verse I mentioned here, namely, Matthew 11:29. Those are the Scripture passages for confidence, messages for improving yourself.

Instead of just memorizing some verses which give you a temporary push to be self-confident what you need is a way of life that makes you confident all the way through. The ideal is to have the self-image of the Christ, since he lives in you through his Spirit if you are a genuine Christian. He is your real life. That is why Paul the apostle said that he can do all things through him who strengthened him in Philippians 4:13.

Improving Yourself

Once you live out this lifestyle of always learning of Jesus you will inevitably improve yourself. The reason for this is you become more and more like him. And you cannot improve yourself better than this God who became a human being.

That is how I also developed my self-confidence. I learn more of the Christ daily. No matter whom I am facing I know he is less than God and God is with me. In a sense I am more than him because God is with me. I suspect that the confidence that Mahatma Gandhi had in successfully opposing British power came also from a habitual reading of the Gospels, learning more of the Christ.

If you live out, not just memorize, these three verses from the Scriptures cited here, particularly from the Gospels, you will have all the confidence in the world and you will go on improving yourself because you are going to become more and more like God himself.

Here are my other blogs which may be of help to you:

for your spiritual growth

for your health

for learning about the new trends around us

for earning some income from the Internet

Here are your links to download the e-books for FREE. To download a copy of A NEW CHRIST by Wallace D. Wattles click this website To download a free copy of A NEW EARTH by Eckhart Tolle click this website I hope that you enjoy reading these free e-books and profit much from them, as I have also profited greatly from them.