Politics and Spirituality for a balanced life
As a former diplomat, turned political writer, and with age and wisdom – inspirational author and speaker – I often get asked:how do politics and spirituality go together?
And I usually answer: they go together brilliantly, thank you very much.
If the person posing the question has more than a moment or two, I go deeper.
“Spirituality keeps us inspired, politics keep us grounded,” I often say. And it is true that not many of us can afford to live disconnected from everyday events – unless we choose to move to a monastery in Tibet for the rest of our lives, which is a very valid life-choice too.
But if we do decide to stay within western society and live amongst others, who perhaps are more ‘grounded’ than us – there are several things we could do to stay connected to our higher-selves while leading a grounded existence and taking interest in politics and world events – which I very much still do:
1) Surround yourself with inspiring people. Some years back, when I started digging deeper into spiritual practices, I remember thinking to myself: ‘what will my friends think?’.
Some of my friends surprised me with their open-mindedness, especially after the publication of one of my books titled On Dragonfly Wings: a skeptic’s journey to mediumship. Others started avoiding me – which was fine, too. But the most surprising thing was that since I started treading the spiritual path, the most amazing and inspiring people have crossed it. Surround yourself with the people who ‘get’ you and who you are today, perhaps those who are on a similar path to yours and who can help inspire you. And if your friend from second-grade is critical of the new you, well – perhaps it is time to let go of that friendship.
2) Do one thing that makes you happy every single day. Whether it is eating a piece of chocolate cake, attending a yoga class or having a cup of coffee with a friend – do a small something that gives you real pleasure every single day.
3) Do one thing that makes someone else happy – every single day. This someone else can be a friend or relative – or a complete stranger. Making someone else happy with a kind gesture will make you happy, too – and you can only hope that this ‘someone else’ will pay the act of kindness forward.
4) Prioritize. Do you have time to meditate, write or do other spiritual practices every single day? Probably not. But if you scratch off your ‘to do’ list a few things that are not that crucial, you will find more time to do what is actually significant to you.
5) Ask for help. Do you need more money to live comfortably? A better job? Someone to love? Ask for help. And I don’t mean your friends, parents or neighbors – although some of them will be happy to help, if they can – but ask the Universe. Ask for what you need in order to live a fulfilled life – and you’ll be surprised how often your wishes might come true if you are wishing for these things in order to enable you to live a more inspired life.
6) Get rid of old in order to make space for new – be it clothes, objects or relationships that have no space in your life anymore. New things need space – physical and energetic – and if you don’t make that space available, it will be more difficult to welcome the new and inspiring into your life.
7) And last but certainly not least – Love. There is something or someone to love in every situation, every single day – even if the object or subject of your love are not aware of it. It is not for them that you love – but for your own well-being and happiness.
Follow these tips – or as many of them as you can – and you might notice a shift, a certain sense of ease – that takes over your daily life. There is no conflict whatsoever between living an inspired life and living in ‘the real world’ – and although many spiritual seekers might tell you that you need to change ‘everything’ if you want to live a more inspired life, I beg to differ. Make these small changes, and you will feel lighter, more inspired and more at ease with your unfolding existence.