When we finally realize that Higher Power is a reality and not an intellectual insight or concept, we have overcome the great illusion that we are not the center of the universe. Congratulations! We have been launched upon the spiritual journey. The full implications of this journey, however, have not yet registered. What lies before us, if we are serious about this new relationship, is not just a tweak or two, but a life changing dynamic.
In this new relationship, we quickly realize that we are expected to surrender every aspect of our lives to the direction of this Power greater than ourselves. This is the time when many of us have second thoughts about this new relationship. We are certainly happy to acknowledge the existence and the reality of Higher Power and we think that it seems reasonable to relocate this Power at the center of our lives.
We think that this is a pretty fair bargain. We have turned over the lion’s share of our life’s energies and domains. But….but…. we would like to maintain control over certain areas, too.
However, it soon becomes clear that it does not work that way. Unless we are ready to turn every aspect of our lives over to this Higher Power, including our will and even our identity, then, in time, the power and potential of this new relationship will wither and die.
This means, for example, that we are summoned to surrender areas of our life frequently thought to be taboo, like our dietary habits, our sexuality and our finances, the last sacred cow for many of us. What we would prefer is to allow certain preferred areas to exist “side by side” with our newfound relationship with Higher Power.
“Unfortunately”, we cannot have it both ways. The burst of transcendental Reality that we have experienced quickly dissipates until it is allowed to infiltrate every single aspect of our lives.
At this point, an enormous clarification is in order. When we talk about “surrendering” areas like diet and sexuality and finances, we are not speaking about eliminating or even reducing these areas of our lives. A spiritually emerging being can enjoy food, sex and money as much as anyone else, in some ways even more so. What is required is to allow Higher Power to direct all aspects of our lives without exception.
Thus, with diet, this would mean choosing food and drink that are conducive to tuning into our spiritual nature. With sex, this would mean seeing bodily pleasure as a gift, viewing lovemaking as a form of prayer. With finances, this would mean seeing and using all of our material resources as gifts to be used responsibly and fairly.
This “surrender” to Higher Power is, then, not an exercise in repression, but the full flowering of every aspect of our lives in an integrated manner. Indeed, the process of “surrender” is actually designed to help us all experience food, sex, money and other pleasures of life in as intense and full a manner as possible. We only get things mixed up when we try to “divide the pot” and withhold certain areas of our life as our private fiefdom.
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