Cylch Blodeuwedd

Druidic Grove in North-West Wales

Modern Spirituality

by gillian - November 4th, 2012.
Filed under: Article Archive. Tagged as: .

What effect does spirituality have on us?

Spirituality can bring us:

  • connection with the wonder and energy of all life;

  • values and the fuel to be good, do good and serve others;

  • development of heart, compassion and consciousness;

  • a mindful, solid and inspiring strength to carry us through the good and bad times;

  • a sense of meaning, personal integrity and purpose independent of material success and the opinion of others.

  • An embedded sense of wellbeing to support physical and mental health;

  • a deep enjoyment of life that is also fully present to its challenges and suffering.

Three key spiritual practices:

If we look carefully at spirituality in its many forms, we will find three key practices, three golden keys, that sit at the heart of all of them. Moreover, William Bloom suggests that these three practices were not invented by spiritual teachers in order to help us, but are innate and part of us just because we are human….whether you know it or not, you do spirituality just because you are alive.

  • Connection: sometimes, surely, your heart is touched and you connect with the wonder and energy of life.

  • Reflection:sometimes you pause and reflect on your life and actions, and ponder how to change and improve.

  • Service:sometimes you have a clear sense of what is right and what is wrong, and you act so as to do good for others.

Connection… when does it happen for you?

What kinds of situation and circumstances most easily melt your boundaries, make you more permeable,touch your heart, open your awareness and connect you with the hum, the wonder and energy of life?

A sense of connection… a change in ambience… a healthy and natural shift in your consciousness and mood… (even if it is very subtle, perhaps just a whisper) is a normal spiritual experience.

When has your heart moved? When have you felt an inner knowing, a haunting or even a wild ecstatic inspiration that there is a marvel and vitality to all life and creation?

These are important experiences. These are the times when, even if you do not know it, you are in a state of connection with the underlying brilliance and mystery of creation, when the usual boundaries of your sense of self become more relaxed and permeable and you feel your relationship with all that is.

Most of the formal research from institutions such as the Alister Hardy Religious Experience Research Centre, which is the U.K.’s major academic research body studying spiritual experiences, suggests that nature is the major environment in which people have a sense of spiritual connection. But William Bloom has found that if the question is asked in a very open way – especially if we start with the proposition that spiritual connection is natural – then the list is far longer and more varied.

  • I thought that kind of connection only happens to saints in caves. But it happens to me when I’ playing football with my son. And when I’m cooking. I kind of knew something was happening when I went walking by the sea or in the hills. I felt something special. I couldn’t put it into words.

  • Mad dance! I have to dance. I love raving. It takes me into a state of being completely ecstatic and connected with spirit.

  • Reading is very important to me. I also like puzzles. Sitting there, pencil in my mouth, I go into a sort of reverie. The world feels good.

  • With my animals. I love them.

  • I am most deeply in my experience of connection when I am csaring for someone who is in pain. When I witness suffering something moves in my heart, and it’s strange, I can feel the beauty of life too.

EXECISE: When Does it Happen For You?

Pause for a few moments and look back over your life.

There have been times and circumstances when you have felt a sense of life’s magic.

This experience may have been very obvious or very subtle.

It may have lasted a while or touched you for only a few seconds.

Notice and be aware of when this has happened for you.

Extract from

“The Power of Modern Spirituality; how to live a life of compassion and personal fulfilment”

by William Bloom, 2011

ISBN 978 0 7499 5285 3

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