REASONED SPIRITUALITY: exploring spirituality, the meaning of life, the concept of God.
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is the golden key to increase the quality of life in relation to ourselves, in
relation to other people, in relation to work and creativity and in relation to
like plants on different levels of their development. Awareness is not about
continuously trying to change ourselves or trying to become “better”, awareness
is about discovering a love, acceptance and respect for ourselves as we are.
Awareness is about learning to appreciate all steps and levels of our
psychological development process towards spiritual
either work with or against life. The first way is a “yes”-attitude towards life
and the second way is a “no”-attitude towards life. The first way results in
joy, harmony and wholeness and the second way results in fight, struggle and
separation from life, but in the end the part can never win over the
is to be true to who and where we are in the
important things you can compromise, but with the important and meaningful
things in life you cannot compromise.
begin to take responsibility for our own development, things begin to happen by
itself. It is like Existence supports our decision to
for the light and the possibilities in all situations. See what you can learn in
all situations. In this way you can use all situations to
Everything of real value is already within
In the society today, there exists a deep division between the inner and
the outer world, between intuition and intellect, between male and female
qualities, between rest and activity and between outer knowledge and inner
wisdom. There is a fast technological development in the society, but we seem to
forget the most important factor: ourselves.
The 21st century means an inner awakening. It means a time to grow up.
Many people talk about spirituality, meditation and inner development, but it
does not seem to change their lives. Our spiritual development depends on our
own commitment to our own growth. We can
use our free will to grow or we can chose not to grow. This is the freedom that
life gives us and it is our own responsibility, but it seems to be few people
that accepts the challenge of life to grow.
People in spiritual
organizations also tend to get caught up in ideas of how it should be. They get
caught up and in the need of the ego to create hierarchies with power, status,
positions, roles, norms and conformity. I have been teaching in organizations on
the theme Awareness and organization, where the awareness of the difference
between acting out of ego and acting out of awareness has created a new flow in
the whole organization.
There are many political, economical and religious interests, who are
interested in that we do not develop a trust in ourselves since people who trust
themselves and are in contact with their own inner source of truth are difficult
to manipulate and control. The first step for a seeker of truth is to not allow
other people to manipulate or control them.
One of the largest neuroses of modern times is the need to have power
over other people. This is not described as a neurosis by modern psychiatry, but
in a more enlightened society it will be seen as neurotic behaviour.
basically two kinds of people: those that seek power and outer recognition and
those that seek love, truth and inner wholeness.
Humanity as a whole is in-between power and the heart in its
psychological and spiritual development process towards spiritual maturity. The
next step for humanity as a whole is to realise that real power is love and
21st century represents a crossroad and a
choice between the separation of ego and the vision of the heart. The silent
revolution of the heart is a shift in human consciousness from the shortsighted
perspective of the ego to the focus of the heart on love and the needs of the
other. It is a shift in consciousness from the endless desires of the ego to the
vision of the heart of love, joy, acceptance, wisdom and wholeness. When we
follow the way of the ego, it only leads to struggle, conflict, separation and
exhaustion. The way of the heart means to learn to listen to the voice of our
heart, to our inner source of love, joy, truth and wisdom. It is to be in a deep
harmony with Existence.
an intensive period of work, I lived during 6 months on the beautiful and
magical island of Crete in Greece. I rented a house in a small fishing village.
The house was
situated on the hill of a mountain and in one direction the ocean stretched out
boundless to the horizon and in the other direction the mountain was rising
majestically towards an endless clear blue sky. During the 6 months I lived on
Crete, it struck me many times that the incredible beauty of life is that it is
a mystery. If life would be as simple as two plus two is four, and then the
whole problem of life would be solved, life would become unbearable boring and
tedious. The greatness and beauty of life lies in the fact that it is an
unknowable mystery, which can only be understood by living it – and ultimately
by becoming one with it.
two distinctly different ways to meet every little precious moment of life. The
first way is to say “no” to the reality of the moment, to say “no” to what “is”
in the situation. To say “no” means to resist the reality of the moment. It is
to create a separation to what “is” in the moment. The other way is to say “yes”
to the reality of the moment. It means to invite, accept and embrace the living
reality of the moment.
are spiritual places for those who have eyes to
development. Life is change. If a person does not develop, it does not mean that
the person stands still – it means that the person is going
What is trust in life? Trust is an attitude to life. It means to open our
heart to life. It means to travel with an open heart into the unknown. It means
to dare to take the jump into the unknown. It means to let go of our separate
ideas, attitudes and expectations and allow life to guide us. It means to live
in a deep harmony with life, without expecting life to fit with our ideas and
A friend of mine died recently, which made me meditate over the mystery
of death. To my surprise, I felt that nothing really dies in this Existence. Our
inner being is part of the limitless, part of the eternal. Death is a bridge
over to the other side. Death is a journey into another reality. It is like my
friend has move to another country, but we are still in contact on the inner
plane. We are still meeting in the limitless ocean of consciousness – and our
hearts are still meeting in love. This insight filled me with a deep joy and
reverence for life.
What are the difference between idea and preference? It is a large
difference between idea and preference. Idea means to have a fixed expectation
about how we ourselves should be, about how others should be and about how life
should be. When life does not fit with our preconceived expectations, struggle,
disappointment and exhaustion occur. Preference means that we prefer that life
develops in a certain way, but if the Whole offers us something else we have a
“yes” and an acceptance for what the Whole offers. Idea represents an attitude
of “no” and a separation from life and preference represents an attitude of
“yes” and harmony with life.
Trust in life means to realize that life is not an enemy, but a friend.
It means to realize that Existence loves us. It means to realise that life
supports us. It means to realise that we are already one with
When we learn to meditate, we develop a trust to ourselves and to life.
This trust helps us to be relaxed with whatever happens. This trust helps us to
come in deeper contact with our inner being, with the source of life within
I remember one of my clearest life lessons in how I worry to get things
the way I want and how life continuously provides me with exactly what I need. I
had finished an education in spiritual psychotherapy at the beautiful lake Laggo
Maggiore in north of Italy on the border to Schweiz. I had not yet decided if I
would go back to Sweden after the education, but when one of the other course
participants was going to Sweden the next day, I also decided to go back to
Sweden. The only problem was that her return ticket to Sweden was going over
Italy, while my return ticket was going over Schweiz. But I decided to take a
chance since the final destination Hamburg was the same. On the train I worried
and played up scenes in my head of being thrown off the train in the middle of
nowhere in Italy. When the Italian conductor came I tried to explain in a
mixture of English, Italian, French and expressive body language that my ticket
was going over Schweiz, but that I traveled over Italy and that the final
destination Hamburg was the same. The conductor first looked at me for a long
while and then he simply took a big black pen and made a large cross over the
word “Schweiz” on my ticket and instead he wrote “Italy” with large black
letters. Then he handed over my ticket again and left. Later on when we arrived
to Hamburg, I began to worry about getting a sleeper ticket to Stockholm. On the
train I asked the German sleeper ticket conductor and with German thoroughness
he began to consult his lists. Then he informed me that due to a late
cancellation, there was one single berth left to Stockholm – and that I could
Our heart is the door to trust life. Opening our heart means to learn to
invite the support from Existence. Existence tries in every moment to provide us
with exactly what we need with more lovingness, ingenuity and creativity that we
ever can imagine.
are no reason to be lonely, to be separated from life. When we open
our heart, there is always support.
Trust in life is to shift perspective from struggling and fighting to get
things our way to listening to what the Whole
The more our meditation develops, the more it becomes an inner quality of
trust and silence, with which we can meet every moment in
An early sunny morning during the fall when the first snow had fallen
during the night and the air was high, crisp and clear, I took a walk out in
nature on my way to my first morning meeting with myself over a cup of coffee.
In an isolated part of the forest on a very icy uphill path, I meet a young
blind woman in her twenties with a cain and a blind dog. She told me that she
had lost her way. My heart wanted to reach out to her in her vulnerable
situation with a tenderness and respect for her courage and independence. I
noticed when we continued to talk that even if her physical eyes did not see,
there was nothing wrong with her inner eyes. I was sharply and unsentimental
assessed by her inner eyes. I noticed that I turned my attention within and
cleared my voice and energy from any underlying tones of pity or sentimentality
with her vulnerable situation. I imagined if I would be in her situation and if
I would handle the situation with the same courage, trust and strength that she
showed. For a single moment, I love her like a little sister on the path of life
with a respect for her courage, trust and strength. This situation was a
reminder for me about the lessons that life gives to develop an inner trust to
oneself and an outer trust to life itself. It was a reminder how challenges in
life mobilize our whole courage and how these challenges can be a blessing in
disguise when we accept the challenge. They make us discover a new depth of
being and allows us to see opportunities that we otherwise would not have seen.
It is easy to trust life when life goes according to our ideas and
expectations, but it is a challenge to trust life when life no longer go
according to our expectations. Often in such situations, I ask myself what trust
is in this situation, and invite Existence to guide me. Often this opens a new,
fresh perspective to look at the situation. It often transforms problems and
worry over how to get things my way into an unknown mystery of how life will
solve this situation.
Even if its is chaos in our life, we can still say ”yes” and accept the
chaos. We can create a conscious relation to the chaos, which allows us to even
enjoy the chaos.
The inner being is a quality of trust to life. The inner being is a
silence and emptiness, an inner space, where we can allow life to be as it is. I
remember when I was in a situation, where life was not going the way I wanted it
to go and I had to make a choice. To make myself clear about my obtions, I did
an individual consultation with a therapist, who said: ”You have a lot of
silence and trust in your being. In the inner being, there is not so much ”yes”
and ”no” to things.” This became a lesson for me in learning to let go of my
ideas and expectations and in developing a trust to allow Existence to solve the
When we basically do not ”do” anything, Existence keeps us busy.
Ask yourself the question: ”What is trust
in this situation?” in different situations and listen within to see what your
intuition, the source of love, wisdom and wholeness, the inner voice of
Existence, wants in this situation. Sometimes the answer will come directly and
sometimes it takes some time before Existence is ready to respond, but you will
always receive an answer.
basically from the silence within ourselves.
Healing is pure love. Love is what
creates healing. Silence is the inner source of healing. It is the source of
love deep within ourselves, which is our true
What is the heart of meditation? The
heart of meditation is an inner quality of silence and emptiness. This is the
inner being, the undefinable and limitless within ourselves. It is to watch the
pure consciousness without content. It is to watch the clear blue sky of
consciousness without any clouds that hides the sky. It is to understand who we
are beyond words. It is a direct existential insight into who we really are.
Truth is a
quality in the moment. It arises when we have trust in what happens and are in
contact with what Existence wants us to do. This quality makes the moment shine
with a joy and inner satisfaction.
There are basically two different
ways to relate to the moment. The first way is respons and the second way is
reaction. Respons is a fresh and alive action from the heart in the moment.
Respons is to be open and available to what is real and authentic in the moment.
Respons is to respond with the truth in the moment. It is a love for the truth
in the moment.
Reaction is to act out of the past.
Reaction is to act out of our ideas, attitudes and preconceived concepts about
how we ourselves, how other people and how life should be.
Healing happens when we
say ”yes” to the truth in the moment. Healing happens when we accept the reality
of the moment with a love for how the moment is.
Through following our own heart, we
also help other people to follow their heart. Through following our own truth,
we also help other people to follow their truth.
Healing is the way of the heart. To
open our heart means to invite truth in our life. Our heart is the door to allow
Existence to guide us.
Intuition is our inner source of love, truth and wisdom. The more we
trust our intuition, the more we have access to this inner
own path has always been to trust my intuition and myself. My intuition has
always been my inner teacher and guide in life – even long before I was even
aware of this fact. I have always trusted my own heart, my own love, light,
truth, wisdom and intelligence - and it has always led me right. It has led me
right even when trusting my own heart has meant to go against the flock, when it
has meant to go against others or when it has meant to put up creative
boundaries against that which does not fit with my heart, with my own
The ultimate wisdom is the insight that we are not separated from life.
Wisdom is the insight that we are one with life, one with the
What is enlightenment? The word
”religion” originally means ”to return to the source”. It means to rediscover
the contact with our inner being, with the source of life within ourselves. The
deepest pain in our heart is that we are disconnected from our inner being, we
are separated from life. The deepest thirst and longing in our heart is to
return to our being, where we are one with life.
”The most beautiful experience is the
mystical”, says Albert Einstein in the book Living Philosophies. The goal of
meditation – if you can talk about a goal in connection with meditation – is
enlightenment. In the depth of our being, we are already enlightened. We are an
inseparable part of Existence, but we have forgotten our true nature. We have
forgotten our inner Buddha. Meditation is the way to discover our inner being,
our authentic self, our inner Buddha. Enlightenment is the fruit of meditation.
It is to realize the highest attainment in human consciousness. It is to climb
the inner Mount Everest. The brilliant philosopher Emmanuel Kant was once asked
what enlightenment is and his short answer was: ”to grow up.”
What the Japanese Zen-tradition call
”satori” is a short glimpse of enlightenment. It is like when the lens of a
camera opens for a split second and lets the light in. It is a glimpse of the
light, of the Whole, which exists as a possibility in each and every moment of
I was 9 years old when I had my first
glimpse of wholeness. It was early Christmas morning and I was standing in my
pyjamas in the living room and looked out of the large windows. Outside the
white snow flakes silently singled down towards a snowclad landscape. Suddenly I
was filled with a feeling of being one with the slowly dancing snowflakes, one
with the silent landscape. I did not understand then that this was my first
taste of meditation, but it created a deep thirst and a longing in my heart to
return to this natural and effortless experience of being one with the Whole.
Each human being is unique; each
human being contains a divine spark, an aspect of God. We are much more than we
think we are. The mystery of life is that it is impossible to understand life,
but we can live life. We can never really understand life, but we can become one
with life. We can become one with the dance of life, one with the ultimate
mystery of Existence.
I remember an insight that taught me
much about life. One day I felt that I had everything that I really wanted in
life. I had a creative and meaningful work as a therapist and course leader, I
had a relationship with a beautiful woman, who I loved and who loved me, I had
friend that I trusted and I had money to do what I wanted. But in spite of all
this, I still had a feeling that there was something missing in my life. I was
not satisfied. The thirst and longing in my heart was still searching for
something more. It made me realize that the deepest pain in my heart was that I
was still separated from the Whole and that no outer things or relationships
could ease this pain.
Problems can never really be solved;
it has more to do with discovering a new perspective of seeing. It is about
transcending problems, to grow beyond problems and discovering a new dimension
to be. Instead of seeing things as problems, we can see them as mysteries and
wonder how life will solve this situation.
being is the undefinable within ourselves. The inner being is so undefinable
that we can experience it, but we can not explain it in words. We can become one
with it, but we can not understand it. The inner being is the ultimate mystery
We originally come from the invisible
existential source and it is to this source that we return when we die. Death is
the unconscious way to return to this original source, while enlightenment is
the conscious way to return to this source. Death means to still believe in our
separation from life and enlightenment means to realize our innate oneness with
When I did a therapist education in
USA 1984, one of the course leaders – who had given personal and spiritual
guidance to thousands of seekers of truth all over the world and who I consider
one of the best spiritual therapists in the world – said that I was going to get
enlightened, that I would ”disappear into the silence”. I did not really
understand what he meant then and it was totally absurd for me when other course
participants congratulated me afterwards. The thought that I was going to be
enlightened was totally absurd for me. For me enlightenment was something that
happened to special and chosen persons like Osho, Buddha, Jesus, Lao-Tzu and
Krishnamurti. I did not feel either special or chosen. I did not feel worthy of
The whole theme of enlightenment is
still too large and overwhelming for me, but I feel that the deepest thirst in
my heart and being is to get enlightened, to become one with Existence. I really
want to know the mystery of life. I feel that the rare and precious moments when
my heart and being vibrates in oneness and harmony with life shows that I am on
the right track. The open secret, the existential joke, is that enlightenment is
to search for that which we already are.
Enlightenment is really as simple as
drinking a glace of water. But because enlightenment is so simple, it is easy to
miss. Enlightenment is so close to us that it is easy to miss. It is about
realizing that the door to enlightenment has never been closed. It is our own
effort and restlessness that keeps it closed.
In love relationships with another
person, we can experience short moments of unity and wholeness. But these
moments are always followed by separation again, since relationships are a
continuos balance between love and freedom, between meeting and parting, between
independence and being together and between separation and wholeness.
Enlightenment means to discover this wholeness, this harmony with life, within
ourselves, without being dependent on anybody or
Enlightenment does not mean to be
special or to have an idea to be especially spiritual. There is nothing special
about being enlightened. To be enlightened does not mean to be higher than
somebody else - in the same way that a large tree is not higher or better than a
little bush or a rose is not more beautiful than a tulip is. Enlightenment just
means that we have discovered our authentic inner being, our innate
belongingness with life, while somebody else will realize this when the time is
ripe. To be enlightened is to be totally ordinary, so ordinary, in fact, that we
are nobody at all, we are nothingness, an emptiness. To be enlightened is to be
a medium for Existence; to be enlightened is to be a spiritual healer. It is to
be a medium for Existence, so that the Whole can sing and dance through us. We
become a flute on the lips of Existence through which the existential music can
Existence tries in every moment to
give us exactly what we need with more love, compassion and creativity than we
can ever imagine. When we trust life, we can relax and allow life to guide us to
meet the people that we need to meet, to make the experiences that we need in
order to take the next step in our spiritual
The essence of life is joy. Joy is
the substance of life.
We think that we are separated from life, but in
reality we are already one with life. We are an inseparable part of life. We
belong to life.
If you want to test how independent
you really are from life, then try to hold your breath and imagine how long you
would survive without air. Life is a continuous development between independence
and dependence, between love and freedom and between male and female qualities.
We need the air, we need the houses and we need the roads. We are not separate
from life; we are a part of life.
Existence supports us totally in our
thirst and longing to return to the original source. Existence tries in every
way to help us to get enlightened, to realize that we are already one with life.
Our world is a mirror of ourselves;
our world is a mirror of our own face. We receive exactly what we give
ourselves. If we give out love, we receive love back. If we give out anger and
hate, we receive anger and hate back. If we want to create a loving world around
us, then begin to give love – and love will return to us like pebbles on the
Spiritual healing means to heal the
split between our idea of being a separate “I” and all that which we already
are. Spiritual healing means to heal our separation from life. Spiritual healing
is to become a healing Buddha.
One evening when I meditated out in
nature, my separation from life suddenly disappeared and changed into a unity
with life. Suddenly I was one with life. A joy without reason filled my heart. I
was suddenly one with the divine dance. It was a deeply healing experience, a
feeling that I was Ok as I am and that Existence loves me. It was a feeling of
belonging to Existence. It was an experience of coming home.
When we realize that we are one with
life, the world becomes our home. We are at home
Enlightenment is like throwing
everything up in the air – all our ideas, dreams, expectations, our separate
goals, our previous spiritual experiences, all our ideas of who we are – and see
what comes down again – if anything.
Enlightenment is not only a question
of individual enlightenment; it is also a question of global enlightenment. It
is a question of creating a buddhafield, a paradise, on
We all seek enlightenment –
independent of if we are aware of it or not. We all seek love, joy, acceptance,
silence, truth, freedom and oneness with life. Some people seek enlightenment in
unconscious ways through work, power, status, success, money, relationships, and
sex or through becoming famous, but it is all the same basic search for
Enlightenment is not only about
individual enlightenment, it is also about collective enlightenment. Collective
enlightenment means an expansion of consciousness. It means to begin to think in
terms of “we”, rather than “I”. To think only in terms of “I” is to act out of
the personality. The personality is a separation from life. To think in terms of
“we” means to be in contact with the inner being, with the authentic self, with
the meditative quality within ourselves, with the inner capacity to surrender to
life. To think in terms of “we” means to be in contact with the inner
“yes”-quality. It means to cooperate with that which is larger than ourselves.
Collective enlightenment could also be called for spiritual globalization – in
contrast to the economic globalization, which is only good for the few and bad
for the many. When we realize that all living beings seek enlightenment, that
all living beings seek love, joy, truth and freedom, we can develop a sense of
compassion for all living beings.
The seventh level of consciousness is
placed on top of the head. It is called Unity or chrownchakra and relates to
open for universal consciousness, to attain the ultimate
The seventh level of consciousness
relates to learning to know God. It relates to truth, unconditional love,
enlightenment and the experience of being one with the Whole. It is a freedom
and joy beyond words. The experience of the seventh chakra is an experience
beyond words, which is hard to describe in words. It is to be nothing and
everything at the same time. It is to discover that we have never really been
separated from Existence. It is to be in a deep harmony with Existence. Our
separate little river has finally united with the ocean of consciousness, with
When we begin to open the seventh
chakra, the thousand petaled lotus flower opens. We have learnt the lesson of
life. We have grown up. We have become spiritually ripe and our inner tree has
finally grown fruit. This unity with the Whole does not mean that our unique
individuality disappears. It means that the richer our life experience is and
the more qualities we have developed, the richer the quality of our
A seeker of truth must take the last
steps towards enlightenment himself without relying on any outer crutch or
I took a quiet cup of coffee at a
coffee shop and when I left the shop, one of these precious moments happened.
Suddenly my whole perspective of reality changed from separation to wholeness. I
experienced a unity and belongingness with all people that I meet. I experienced
that I was one with all people and that all people come from the same invisible
source. People have their own unique individuality, but they come from the same
source. It is diversity in unity. It was a sheer joy to walk around and
experience that I was one with all the people that I
Divine love is to realize that we are
one with life. Real love is to realize that in our essence, we are one with the
other person, one with the stones, one with the trees, one with the earth and
one with the blue sky. It is to realize that all of life is
I had a magical day during one Sunday
when I walked out in nature. On the outside this day only consisted of taking a
walk out in the beautiful sunny weather and cleaning my apartment, but on the
inside everything suddenly changed. When I walked out in nature in the sunny
weather, a silent explosion suddenly happened within me and my whole perception
of reality changed. In a single moment, everything had changed, although nothing
on the outside had really changed. Everything on the outside was exactly as
before, but my way of seeing had changed. The difference was that before I did
not see and now I could see. My eyes were open. Suddenly I was one with
everything, one with the stones, one with the trees and one with the people that
I meet on my walk. My heart danced with joy together with a feeling of: ”I am
God”. Not that I am the creator of everything, but that I am part of the Whole,
part of the divine. It felt like coming home, that Existence is my home. I also
saw that even if the people that I meet did not understand that they are a part
of the Whole, they still are a part of the Whole. I felt the waves of Existence
in my own heart and being and I felt like a small wave in a great ocean. It gave
a taste of the eternal, a taste of the limitless and boundless source of
creativity. In just a few moments, I learnt more than during 20 years in
university. Wisdom is basically the understanding that we all are part of the
Whole. We are all small rivers moving towards the ocean. I laughed at the fact
that enlightenment is really our innate birthright and that small children
already lives in this mystical unity with the
Enlightenment is a total ”yes” and
acceptance of ourselves. It is to love ourselves as we
Enlightenment is to live, love and be
from the inner being, from the inner life source.
Enlightenment is to discover our
authentic inner being, our unique flavor and quality, our true individuality. It
is not about trying to imitate somebody else.
Enlightenment is the phenomenon of
”disappearing” into the Whole, to become so one with the larger flow of the
Whole that it starts to sing and dance through
When we live in contact
with our inner being, we find ourselves in an alive, intimate and expanding
relationship with Existence.
Enlightenment is not a static
phenomenon; it is to say ”yes” to the truth of the moment. It is to embrace the
living reality of the moment. Enlightenment is a dance with life, a dance of
The insight of enlightenment is the
same in everybody, but the way to express the quality of enlightenment is
different depending on the flavor, quality, life experience and individuality of
Enlightenment is not an end; it is a
new beginning, which has no end. It just means that we realize that we are one
with life – and that life is a dance of joy.
The dimension of being is a love
affair with love. It is to return to the original source. It is to be one with
life. It is to come home.
Enlightenment is to be in intimate
contact with the healing ocean. It is when the drop disappears into the ocean,
into the Whole.
SWAMI DHYAN GITEN is author of the book Song of
Meditation — About Meditation, Relationships & Spiritual Creativity
(Solrosens forlag, Swedish edition, 2001) and The Silent Whisperings of
the Heart - A Collection of quotes from Giten (The Mandala Press, USA,
2006). The Swedish edition of his first book Song of Meditation was selected as
the book of the month by Life Energy Book Club, one of the largest quality book
clubs in Sweden. He is currently writing his third book Presence - Working
from Within: Working with people from Love, Meditation and