Posted by: drjamm | May 5, 2008

leaving church


This has been a formative time for me in — and out — of the Unitarian Church. My spiritual emergency, emergence, and evolution over the last two years culminated in a realization this past January that I needed more from Unitarian worship — more of exactly what I was not sure, but I know it had something to do with needing more of the experiences that would enhance and develop the feeling of Spiritual Energy running through my Body and Soul.

For about two years in the Unitarian church, I hungered for a community to share the experience of spiritual conversation, communion, and co-participation in the spiritual care of others in need. In retrospect, I realized I had allowed myself to languished in a state of, what was for me, “spiritual malnourishment” because I felt I ought to be able to meet my needs within my church community. I believed if only I could communicate my spiritual needs clearly enough that my beloved “extended family” at church would reach out to meet my needs. But the truth was that my experience of personal spiritual crisis and my consequent journey through the Spirit World was so profoundly different than the experiences of most of my “extended family” at church, that I was unable to bridge the Humanist/Spiritual divide with appropriate language — no matter how much I wished to be understood.

I am very grateful that I was blessed to find a few individuals in my church community who understood and validated my experiences and spiritual needs. And at the same time, I simply could not find a way to share adequately the “Heaven-and-Hell” of my journey with most of the people with whom I had important relationships. I felt like an outsider in a religious culture that I formally felt was my “spiritual home.” I eventually found staying at Church was not congruent with my Soul’s clear calls for “more.”

So I made the decision to journey away from my Unitarian Church — at least for awhile –and try to find ways to feed my long-starved Soul. The separation from my church community and most particularly from the choir I adored being with was agonizing. And at the same time, as I began to “feast” on spiritual “foods” from a wide variety of cultures and sources, I started to come alive again. As I filled my plate with many, diverse spiritual lessons, experiences, practices, and rituals, I felt like I was an old, sepia-coloured photo slowly but surely blooming into full and vibrant colour. How I journeyed and created an abundant spiritual buffet for myself is a separate, longer story. My abridged story for now, however, is that I have found a place in myself that is alive and shimmering with Spiritual meaning and connection. This place is new and I am still a novice in how to negotiate around and nurture this newness; and at the same time, I feel I have arrived at my Spiritual Core and embodied my Soul as a result of partaking in this on-going spiritual banquet. Being outside my beloved church community was — and still is — lonely and even painful, at times, but I am nevertheless becoming more whole and more in touch with what I feel sure I was born to Be.

(bright heart singing, copyright 2008 – jamm. Creative commons attribution, non-commercial sharing only (translation: feel free to quote me in context or use this entry but please always credit me for my work, thanks.) https://brightheartsinging.wordpress.com

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Responses

  1. my questions answered wasn’t sure if you were musil or not.. I searched on the tag “sufi” and found you.. here you mention the church thus I guess you are Christian by faith?


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