There are as many spiritual paths as there are people. It’ s often said that it is the journey, not the destination, that matters most.
Like most things, spirituality is not exempt from being commercialised. Chögyam Trungpa, a controversial figure himself, came up with an excellent term that I think describes this very well: Spiritual materialism.
The spiritual supermarket is indeed well stocked. There’s something for everyone, including skeptics.
We live at a day and age where most of us in the Western world are free to practice any sort of spirituality we wish. The selection goes far and wide. We have angel therapy, reiki, card readers, Theta healing, creative visualisation, modern shamanism, witches, wizards, popular Buddhism, past life regression and crystal gazing. We have traditional religions, too, along with yards and yards of bookshop shelf space taken up by self-help publications. On many levels this is good, of course – I am not judging any of these methods and practices as all roads lead to one destination.
I, too, have explored all sorts, and honour certain old ways (such as tarot) greatly, and will undoubtedly explore more in the years to come.
However, what I find concerning is the readiness with which spiritual seekers are ready to give their power away in their search for meaning.
There are some fairly big egos on the field of New Age, a lot of power games, many self-proclaimed masters channelling evolved beings or archangels. There are all too many people unwilling to explore beyond the surface to realise that their guru is, in fact, only human. Ethics and responsibility can often go amiss where the blurred lines of therapy and psychic work are concerned. Most therapists are genuine and come from the right place. Others don’t, and they’re most likely unaware of it.
There is nothing more precious than your inner knowledge and wisdom. If something doesn’t feel right or ethical, walk away. If you feel the need to consult a specific therapist each time you’re facing a decision, take a reality check. If someone claims to know you better than you do, question it. The therapist is, of course, responsible for the service they provide, but having healthy boundaries is also the responsibility of the recipient.
Most of all, never think that another human being is above (or below) you in the spiritual ranking. We are all incomplete in our own perfect way. A good therapist will not come up with a ready made package, but provide you with tools to create your own. A good teacher will share what works for them and encourage you to make up your own mind.
Navigating the spiritual maze with your inner compass might take a bit longer than following a set path of rules, but listening to yourself every step of the way builds a solid foundation of inner reflection and self awareness – and these are things that can never be taken away from you. All you need is to remember that all of us are divine, including you.