Spiritual Health and a Healthy Mind

When we have harmony on the inside, we tend to create harmonious relationships. That is why true spiritual contact shows up as genuine respect for someone else’s spiritual path. Just as a healthy spiritual life supports a healthy mind, a healthy mind supports a healthy spiritual life. It works either way. The question of which one is more important is best reworded as, “Which one do I need to tend to right now.”

In one sense, psychological health is about being at peace with one’s humanity, while spiritual awareness is about remembering one’s divinity. The two are inseparable. When we embrace our humanity, we remember our divinity. Likewise, when we take the time to remember our divinity, we bring harmony to the human side of the equation. Although each individual goes through his or her personal dance for cultivating psychological and spiritual health, there are three important commonalities: truthfulness, stillness, and loving touch.

When we practice truthfulness, we tend to naturally and organically question our thoughts and accept our emotions, thus promoting clear thinking and emotional serenity. Speaking the truth is particularly important for bringing harmony to our emotional world. Of the many emotions and desires that stir within us, not one of them demands to be indulged, provided that each one is recognized, understood, and respected. It is only when we chronically ignore, belittle, or reject our emotions and desires that they become monstrous. On the other hand, when we listen deeply to our emotions, and desires allow them to speak, we realize they are all saying the same thing: “Please let me be. I will be okay if you just let me be.”

Truthfulness also promotes intimacy with others. Without intimate emotional contact with others, our thoughts become tangled, our emotions unstable, and our spiritual practice becomes shallow and meaningless. Stillness is particularly important for organizing our various thoughts, perceptions, and beliefs. The rational mind’s activity of analyzing data must be followed by a period of mental rest, during which all the pieces are silently integrated. Creative inspiration often comes after prolonged stillness. Ideas and solutions to problems often make themselves known in the stillness of early morning, after several hours of sleep. Truthfulness and stillness are synergistic.

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