There’s a huge difference between religion and spirituality! Religion is a man made phenomenon established to control the masses.Historically, by using the tools of fear, guilt, exclusion and divisiveness, religion has programmed its followers in a way that has discouraged and even denounced independent thinking. We’ve been taught to be God fearing rather than God loving, to judge, disown, condemn and deny anyone who lives a life that differs from the flock. Loving oneself and others comes with conditions set fourth by religious organizations, their rules, regulations, and overall dogma, that insists on conformity at all costs. There’s no place for individuality in being, thinking or living. How dare you be Gods creation and not mans, is their mantra!Spirituality, being the essence or spirit of all that defines each of us is, on the other hand, an inborn expansive energy that guides us on our path and, personalizes our relationship with God, Universe, All Powerful, or whatever you choose to call it. Unlike religion, ourlearning, growth and understanding of self in relationship to God is based on the choices each of us makes, and is guided to make for ourselves. You and I are not victims at the hands of any religion that would limit our awareness or access to our own inner promptings of spirit, unless we choose to be.
Spirituality empowers; religion dis-empowers! Access or return to spirit involves unlearning those thoughts and ideas that no longer serve our best interest.Refining our thoughts is like cleaning out the closet and getting rid of clothes that no longer fit, serve the purpose and are outdated and worn. So it is with our thought filled minds. You must unload the negative thoughts that limit your ability to live your authentic truth and best life. If their not contributing to your mental, emotional, physical and spiritual well being and growth, they need to be replaced with thoughts that will. Save your best clothes and preserve your best thoughts! Make room for the new self-thinking, independent and loving you. Fit your thoughts to the life you choose to live.I was married for fourteen years to a guy who worshipped me, and the mother of three little children, when I met another married woman at a prayer meeting. Little did we know that our close friendship would evolve into a love that knew no boundaries; a love that couldn’t be denied or ignored. The end result was the Catholic Church and the prayer group turned its back and closed its doors, because we no longer fit their description of what a Catholic is, should be, think, express or encompass. Initially, we lost every family member, friend, and prayer partner as well.Awakening to the realization and surprise that we were lesbians, was not only a shock that rocked our whole world, but the beginning of another journey from fear to faith, anxiety to trust, non-acceptance to acceptance, guilt to self-love, and doubt to self assurance. It was during this time we recognized the power of love, truth, faith and the indomitable spirit within. These are the attributes needed when your life seems to be un-raveling and falling apart. Often times when our life seems to be falling to pieces, it’s really falling together for the first time. Living our authentic truth, as you know, isn’t always easy, but whenyou realize the rewards of being and living your life, according to the gentle whisper of your spirit, you light the way for others to follow.You then become like the lighthouse that stands firm on solid rock defying the fury of the elements, forever beaconing, directing, and guiding all ships to safety with the pulsing of her light. Like this lighthouse, your light will reach out into the darkness to show the way. She, the lighthouse, cannot be moved and neither can you, when you’re grounded in the truth that you are a spiritual being, encased in a body, and have at your disposal, all the tools needed to live your best life.So too is your spirit a beacon that calls you inward to the knowledge that you are so much more then form moving through time. This powerful spirit, your guiding light, always reflecting the essence of who you are, stands vigil in joyful anticipation of your awakening to the awareness, knowledge and recognition that you were created to be just who you are.Walk tall, proud and live your authentic truth, knowing that you are a child of God and you were meant to be here!Sidney Andrews, author of: “A Fall to New Heights” and “Journey into Thought.” Questions and comments welcomed at: . Website is: http://sidney-andrews.com.
Sidney is a mother, grandmother, retired nurse with a BS degree in psychology from Worcester State College, author and encouragement speaker. She's a contributing writer for examiner.com, and an up and coming GLBTQ online magazine, to be released January 1, 2013, called "Proud Times." In June of 2011 she won an award at the Hollywood Book Festival for her book "A Fall to New Heights." Sidney has had numerous radio interviews and has written for http://thelightwithin.com and http://inspiremetoday.com. She retired to Port St. Lucie, Florida in 2003 with, Kate, her partner of almost forty years.
Sidney's passion is writing to empower, encourage, inspire and support the GLBTQ community.She is a powerful speaker who projects her passion in a manner that promotes mental, emotional and spiritual well being specific to ones self, and or their partnerships. Both her memoir "A Fall to New Heights" and "Journey into Thought" Awakening to Spirit, reflect the secrets to living ones authentic truth and best life.
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