I do quite a lot of what's called "spiritual direction." What is it? Basically trying to find out what is really going on in an utterly complex game of life. Of course, this includes one's own life.Here are some relevant questions:
- Who am I?
- What do I want?
- Am I in a positive state spiritually -- or not?
- Do I like and respect my self? (Tell me the ways)
- Do I believe I have a meaningful future?
- Do I listen patiently to others, and find a lot of meaning in it, or am I the type to shout "Fire!" in a crowded theater?
- Have I cultivated an intelligent, reasonable, hopeful life plan -- or am I adrift?
- Would I describe myself as a change agent or do I stand in opposition to social change?
- Will the sun rise tomorrow morning?
- If I were Columbus, would I discover America tomorrow? Or would I rather have a beer, rest in a convenient hammock, or -- wow! -- maybe make a pile of dough?
Since we're engaged in a bit of dialogue here, please let me address a serious question to you. Have you learned to communicate in non-verbal ways? In other words, when you use words do you tend to say what you mean?
Now take a deep breath. (You can shut your eyes if you wish). Do you think you have a habit of telling the truth in ordinary conversation and social intercourse? Do you ever take the bull by the horns and ask the hard question? If there's a key to your particular mystery, will you let someone know it so they can know you better?
My advice is, don't be obsessed by what you imagine other people are thinking about you. In the first place, most of them aren't doing that at all, but are sadly thinking about themselves. Try to stretch outward (from simply a one-on-one relationship) to making a network of connections with other people.
Now I have a more demanding suggestion for you. Hey, since no one is an island, quit acting like one. Survival means bonding together. The illusion of human interconnectedness (either through the ubiquitous media or the internet in one's life) does not achieve depth. Community is nourished in the physical, mental and spiritual interaction of aware human beings.
All of us confront a universal question: how can I get from here to there? Make a decision. Drop the other shoe. Strip and dive into the water. Get on with it.
Here's a basic and tough truth: Forgive. (Repeat; forgive). The loss of energy in harboring resentment and even hate is incalculable. So, break a heavy silence. Tell the truth instead of a lie. Start a new action by making a telephone call you've been afraid of.
In other words; have a merry Christmas and a happy New Year.