The Role of Spirituality
In my book Create Space I address the issue of spirituality in the context of “the wheel of life”, and the need to keep it in some sort of balance:
Finally, there is the fourth aspect of our ‘quadrinity’: the neglected, and often disavowed, spiritual self. I recognise this is going to be a controversial part of the book, so let me lay my cards on the table. I went through a spiritual awakening when I was around thirty years old. This involved yoga, Reiki, and a flirtation with Buddhism before I eventually found a spiritual home in the High Anglican tradi- tion of the Church of England – a tradition replete with ritual and ceremony, but also liberal and mystical.
I recognise that overt spiritual practice and, in particular, organised religion are not for everyone. Many people see their spiritual self as being expressed through their relationships, good deeds or their connection with nature. For Loehr and Schwartz, our spiritual aspect is ‘the energy that is unleashed by tapping into one’s deepest values and defining a strong sense of purpose.’ For people in recov- ery from a multitude of addictions in twelve-step fellowships, it is the ‘all things to all people’ higher power.
Others believe that the word spirituality implies something more transcendent, mystical or even supernatural. Pia Mellody, one of the great recovery therapists defines it like this: ‘Spirituality is the experience of being in a relationship with a power external to you and greater than self that provides acceptance, guidance, solace and serenity.’ An allusion, I guess, to God, arguably the most mysterious space of all. My work with hundreds of people over the years leads me to strongly believe that having some sort of spiritual belief and practice – however you choose to define it – is an important part of staying grounded and balanced.