Dear reader

Why do I write about pitfalls of spirituality?

My purpose with this blog is to crystallize and share my thoughts and experiences, in the hope that you and I may benefit from them. From 1993-2005 I practiced a so-called spiritual method (Sahaj Marg). Ultimately I realized that this method - and especially the organization around it (Shri Ram Chandra Mission or SRCM)- was contrary to some deep spiritual layer in myself. I came to some clear conclusions, and also to some still developing insights.

One still developing insight is that almost everybody is looking for some form of spirituality in their life. Therefore there are many spiritual methods and movements, often with similar pitfalls to the ones I experienced.

Many people follow a well-trodden path which is defined by the group in their immediate vicinity. Others are prompted by their heart and/or head to look for spirituality that makes sense on a personal level. Spirituality gives fulfillment -humanity as one, universal love growing, one with the buddha- as well as direction through life's tough questions.

I write about the pitfalls of spirituality because so many others seem to write mostly about the bliss of their own approach to spirituality. This bliss to me actually seems a pitfall.

Understanding the pitfalls I deem essential to gain more spiritual insight. For me this actually translates into a lighter and more loving heart. I do not believe that understanding is the key issue in spirituality. But I do believe that misunderstanding can block key issues (although to which degree probably varies with each person).

Please bear with my frequent use of I feel, seems to me, in my not so humble opinion and so on. It is to emphasize that I do not consider any of my opinions to be more than that. I cannot bring you universal truth. In my not so humble opinion [imnsho] universal truth is a major pitfall in spirituality.

Dear reader, I hope you find something worthwhile on these pages. Friendly reactions, which may be as critical as you like, are always welcome.

Tips how to read this blog

* Please start with the closing remarks (click on the link), they should provide a balanced perspective on this blog.

* There is a list of 20 pitfalls in the sidebar. Clicking on a pitfall will provide a number of posts in which that pitfall is discussed to some extent.

* If you have time, consider starting with the oldest post, and simply going through to each next post. This probably gives the most faithful ;-) reading...

Friday, January 1, 2010

New year's wish to all

new year's wish 2010

(click on the image for an enlargement)


Anonymous said...

Dear Frank,

thankyou for this blog.

I have been involved in 2 practices in the last couple of years, and have devoted much of my time to them.

I have to say, I resonate with at least half of the comments you have made on this blog - I have experienced many, many of the same contradictions and pitfalls. So much so that I have thoroughly enjoyed reading to integrate my own experiences and ideas. And I am still doing that.

One significant difference I detect, though, is that you seem to have contentedly left your movement, finding enough satisfaction elsewhere in your life, whereas I still feel that I need something else in order to heal a kundalini syndrome I developed a few years ago. So I have felt obligated to continue these practices despite all of these crazy contradictions.

but really, so many parallels I am shocked.


February 19, 2010 10:12 AM

frank waaldijk said...

dear chris, thank you for your comment (i moved it from the first post to here, where it will be more visible to other readers).

i do indeed find enough spirituality without practising the method of my former movement (sahaj marg, srcm).

i still practise meditation though, simply on my own.

to say that i have left sahaj marg
contentedly is perhaps an exaggeration. i have described some of the benefits that i felt in being part of such a movement. these benefits i miss, and some people i miss dearly.

but it is true that i am very much at peace with my decision to stop with sahaj marg. some people have the capability to ignore the contradictions, the manipulation and the pitfalls of a movement, and just concentrate on what is beneficial for them personally.

for me this doesn't work. for me spirituality is also very much about purity and truthfulness. and apart from that, i do not wish to endorse what i perceive to be serious misconduct of the Inner Circle by being a member of their movement.

i sincerely hope you will heal, and find your own inner path again without having to rely on a movement which you feel is contradictory and perhaps not so beneficial after all.

kind regards, frank