There is a highly complicated maze of New Age spiritual ideas and information available today. For convenience and to fit popular western usage, my definition of New Age = all the spiritual and religious alternatives to the standard Judeo, Christian and Islamic traditions. |
My local weekly Asheville North Carolina paper lists spirituality offerings under the title Cosmic Buffet (churches are in another section of the paper). The latest paper had 61 major listings of spiritual groups, classes and gatherings with perhaps double that number of sub-listings. This was for a relatively small city of 70,000! It is a confusing complicated maze.
If you believe all you read about New Age spirituality, then it is all good and wonderful because all roads lead to God-Tao in the end. While I agree that all paths and roads eventually lead to God-Tao, many popular spiritual paths are lonnnnnnng detours. These detours result from the spiritual choices we make. Personally, I have been on hundreds of both long and short psycho-spiritual detours during my lifetime. With the benefit of study and life experience, most have become obvious. But they were mostly obscured while I was detouring.
This is the spinning-your-wheels symbol that I am using throughout this book as an indicator of a likely idea (or action, or belief, or system) that causes many to end up spinning their wheels. I also call them possible detours, traps, plateaus or dead ends. I do not intend to imply that everyone with such ideas is trapped. In fact, some of these possibly ensnaring ideas cannot be avoided.
Please do not think that I am suggesting that you avoid the spirituality maze or the ideas I may have marked with the spinning-your-wheels symbol. New Age spirituality (including possibly ensnaring ideas) remains valuable to me. I think that New Age spirituality is also particularly valuable for millions of people who do not fit and will not fit into any conventional religious mold.
While the spirituality maze is complex and full of alluring junk, it also has much high-quality knowledge that can help you align with your soul and with your life purpose. I intend to point out what I consider both the useful and the spinning-your-wheels paths. I do not view such cyclic traps as harmful or bad, just as detours along the way. If you wish to avoid detours (often painful or unpleasant), then this book will provide suggestions and ideas for selecting the good stuff and avoiding the traps in the maze. The first spirituality trap I shall discuss is that of having no spiritual purpose (or a flawed purpose).
© 2008 by Thayer White
Finding Your Soul in the Spirituality Maze
|Excerpt from Be Your Own Therapist: "My 23 years of experience with a variety of therapists and therapies, both as a therapist and as a client, convinced me long ago that more than 90% of the work in effective therapy could be done outside the therapy hour."|