I heard a very respected spiritual teacher make the above statement recently and I both laughed and thought how insightful this statement is. I grew up going to 12 years of religious schools and was well steeped in the indoctrination of a Catholic belief system. As I began to think about those learned beliefs I started to sort out what felt right to me, what made sense to me and what did not. Now I see myself as a deeply spiritual person but not at all religious.
My question is, why do people align themselves with religious organizations and beliefs and not thoroughly examine them? There seems to be so much in need of examination about all of life especially the belief systems of others and organizations. Think tea party religious conservatives, Sarah Palin and those who are looking forward to Armageddon and you know religion is not for the sane of mind.
Back to the title of the post and why it fits so well at defining religion. The costume party of the Catholic Church is extensive from the Pope, through Cardinals and on down to the priests and nuns who have worn special clothes to separate themselves from others. Other religions have elaborate costume parties and even the Tibetan Buddhists really put on a costume show.
As with costume parties, many religious organizations are all about show (Buddhists seem an exception). They look and sound good but with just a little exploration you will find an absence of substance. There are also some valuable practices. The leaders of these giant corporations called Religions often claim to be directed by God. How can all these different religions claim to be the only way to God?
The real truth is that all religious organizations are the invention of human beings, mostly men, who are no more spiritual than you and I. Most religions are about selling fear, social control, and directing others to believe things that are not true and sometimes plainly ridiculous. Many modern mega-churches are about the ego of the ministers and about amassing resources and wealth like the Catholic Church. These organizations do not want people to really explore their spiritual nature because those who seek the truth will soon not have any need for religion.
It may be time to update your beliefs, explore your true values and to search within for the guidance of your higher nature. No outside organization can do this for you. Anyone that says they know God and that God speaks through them and wants to tell you right from wrong should be questioned. The real truth is they are often hiding behind the mask of some false God that resides only in their mind. Also they cannot know what is best for you because they are not you and most likely have no idea what they are talking about.
Strip away the baggage left from the costume shows of your life and instead go in search of your own spiritual nature. There is so much in you yet to be expressed.
Try this statement on: “I am a fully realized spiritual person.”