We often talk about the role of faith and truth in spirituality, and how they influence our daily practice. However, in the face of change, which is endemic to life, we are often subject to uncertainty about what lies ahead for us. While we may not like to be subject to uncertainty, we may want to think twice about living a life of absolute certainty…
For example, if you knew for certain exactly how long you were going to live, would you live your life the same way you live it right now? Or would you change the way you live? It may sound paradoxical but uncertainty can allow us to focus on the present moment – for there is no certainty about whether the next moment is even promised to anyone. In the face of uncertainty, we can be innovative about what we do with the present moment. We can bring all the awareness that our conscious nature will allow us, to influence and infuse the present moment with empathy, joy, and friendliness.
While some thrive and flourish in uncertainty, some of us let it sow the seeds of doubt and breed fear within us. Taken to the extreme, uncertainty can influence our emotions and (lack of) actions to such an extent that fear becomes our default operating mode. While a certain amount of fear can help us avoid life-threatening situations, we all know the disempowering feeling that excessive fear can create within our mind. So, we have to remain vigilant and aware that uncertainty does not cut off our access to courage and heart-based action.
Those of us who are cognizant of our spiritual journey through daily life, may have experienced the uncertainty brought about by our first-time experiences of the ‘unknown’. In trying out a new spiritual practice, in reading a new book, in listening to a new piece of music, or merely taking a walk in a new forest – we may come to a place of higher awareness which was unknown to us… The unknown can invoke uncertainty – what are we supposed to do with this new sliver of light? Is this new vista that lies spread before us on our spiritual path an invitation to more ‘unknowns’? Will we trust our ‘guides’ and move forward despite the risk of greater uncertainty? Or will we pause and maybe even retreat to our well worn paths which are informed by knowledge and the apparent promise of certainty?
In the seasons of change – of weddings and graduations, of end-of-school-year goodbyes and moves across towns or across states or countries, of children moving away and parents moving back in – uncertainties and unknowns are inevitable. Our faith, our courage, our truths, our values, our actions, our commitments, our intentions, our capacity for love, and a sense of humor, will determine our journey through the rock-strewn paths of life…
Regardless of the unknowns that we may experience, of that, I am certain. How about you?
P.S. #SpiritChat convenes on twitter at 9amET/1pmUK/6:30pmIST on Sunday, June 7th 2015. Please join us!