“When you finally grasp the spiritual meaning of ebb and flow, and the changing spiritual tide, you will move more quickly toward enlightenment.” ― Guru Tua
Many wise teachers have told us we are spiritual beings having a physical experience. However, our culture reinforces the focus is on the physical aspect. Instead, they feed us the spiritual junk food of Western organized religion, which has no spiritual nutrition. It focuses on the physical world, selling the afterlife and prosperity.
Changing Spiritual Tide
When we shift our focus from the physical and temporal world to the spiritual, we can perceive reality in a different, more complete way. When we enter the transcendent realm of consciousness, we can experience this energy.
Everything is in a constant state of change; our health increases and decreases. Our finances and relationships change; everything in life is continually evolving in energy and value. To grasp the “spiritual meaning of ebb and flow,” we must learn to recognize these changes. It’s crucial to maintain the positive flow of energy and remove anything blocking it.
Some people feel this energy as a current; Empaths can sense emotional energy. We can learn to open ourselves to the energy flow available in ourselves and the planet. For example, Kundalini Yoga is a system that focuses on aligning and opening our nervous system. It allows abundant spiritual energy to flow more freely. Reiki is a healing system that can produce similar energy flows.
The Spiritual Meaning of Ebb and Flow
The first thing to realize is that there is a give and take in energy between our spiritual and physical selves. This spiritual energy is like the sap of a flower. The fluid within the flower is expressed differently in the stem, leaf, and flower. When we take care of the soil, water and give it sunshine, it blossoms. If we do not nourish the plant, it withers and produces no fruit. Enlightenment is nothing special; when we nurture awareness, it will grow naturally.
“A keen observation shows that the whole universe is a single mechanism working by the law of rhythm; the rise and fall of the waves, the ebb and flow of the tide, the waxing and waning of the moon, the sunrise and the sunset, the change of the seasons, the moving of the earth and of the planets, the whole cosmic system and the constitution of the entire universe are working under the law of rhythm. Cycles of rhythm, with major and minor cycles.” ― Hazrat Inayat Khan, The Mysticism of Music, Sound, and Word
Giving and Receiving
Enlightenment is the expansion of awareness, which often happens by degrees. Understand the underlying principles of nature will expedite our journey. The changing spiritual tide between giving and receiving is an excellent example of these principles. When we can give without expecting a return, then we can move into the flow of giving and receiving. We all have needs, and striving to fulfill them is like trying to grasp water.
It’s when we “share” out of our need that we move toward enlightenment. When we do this, it opens the virtues of the spirit. Here is where you receive the bounty of humankind’s greatest treasures. These include gratitude, joyfulness, happiness, love, thankfulness, blissfulness, appreciation, mindfulness, and serenity.
We receive more by channeling these virtues than we can ever get through manipulating physical things. Giving without expectation is one door through which we can enter these virtues. These virtues have similar aspects of reciprocity.
Teacher and Student
Just because we learn something and practice, it does not mean we fully know it. No matter what “it” is. There is always a deeper layer of understanding. Keep a beginner’s mindset always to have room for more knowledge. Strive to keep an open mind. You always learn more from the perspective of a beginner.
No matter how much you think you know, remember there is always more to know. It is also imperative to help others on the path. Helping and teaching others enables you to learn from a unique perspective.
There is a vital relationship between the teacher and the helper. The changing spiritual tide, the ebb and flow of energy between the teacher and student, is essential as knowledge. Sometimes, the power is the knowledge we gain, especially when dealing with Mantras and Sutras. When an inspired teacher introduces the right Mantra, the student receives the teacher’s energy. The Mantra or Sutra’s power comes from both the essence of the sound and the teacher’s spirit.
The Power of Silence and Presence
Sometimes all that one requires is silence. We understand the power of silence in meditation, but listening is a way to bring this energy into a relationship. Helping starts with focusing your attention on listening rather than a rebuttal.
You may not have an answer to their questions, but that’s okay. You help them by listening and being present. Here too, you find a crucial ebb and flow. Likewise, the more you help others, the more you’ll understand the nature of life. The more you support others, the more support you’ll receive.
Even without imparting any information, you are communicating through vibration. If you have a genuinely caring attitude toward the other person, listening will be enough. Your “presence” is a strong vibration that can provide whatever the person needs. Trust it.
Seeker Versus Follower
Seeking the truth is an independent endeavor. It is not about following someone or something. Resist becoming a follower or the worshiper of celebrities. Don’t confuse a charismatic personality with knowledge or truth.
So, choose not to be a follower. Instead, be a seeker of knowledge and truth. Above all, find teachers who provide tools to help you break consciousness boundaries. Make sure they have the time and space to know you personally. A guru is like a boat to get to the other side of the river. Once you get to the other side, get out. Move on. Don’t sit in the boat. If the boat sits in the middle of the river, get out and swim independently.
You can learn from seminars and groups. However, this cannot take the place of a knowledgeable teacher who understands what you need. Continue to have the mindset of an outstanding student. Foster a beginner’s mindset and attitude. Be eager to learn, cautiously skeptical, and always question the answers. Your primary tools should logical reasoning together with your intuition. By the way, question and test everything, especially the cultural narrative.
There is a correlation between the seeker and the truth. Don’t fall for the counterfeit of religion. Religion is the fast food of spiritual truth. It tastes good, but it is not suitable for you. It has no spiritual nutrition. Truth satisfies the soul and doesn’t need continued indoctrination. We find truth with solid science, with repeatable processes, facts, and archeological evidence. Beware of any belief system which prevents you from seeking the facts that underlay the system.
Ebb and Flow and Motivation
There will always be ups and downs on your journey, and your motivation is no exception. You will be more successful if you understand the difference between the rational and emotional mind. Self-awareness is the key. The more we practice self-awareness techniques, the less likely we are to fall prey to negative emotional traps.
Reading articles like this one will help open your self-awareness and motivate you through the rough spots.
The practical tools for self-awareness are not tricky, but they do require persistence. You are more likely to succeed if you have a plan. Your plan is 3X more likely to succeed if you put it in writing. Leverage modern technology if you can. Use your smart device and set a reminder to practice meditation, mindfulness, or self-observation techniques. Otherwise, use stickies in prominent places in your home and workspace.
Seek positive reinforcement from those on the same journey. We are here to help with tools and encouragement.
Don’t be afraid to change your goals and expand your journey. Remember, if you only lift yourself, your quest is only half done. Helping others is a great way to raise your positive social awareness and give you partners with whom you can share. You’ll learn more about yourself by helping others.
Changing Spiritual Tide
If you look for it, you will see the give and take between many crucial aspects of life. For example, we build all relationships upon mutual trust and respect. You get and give both. Similarly, there is a critical relationship between man and the environment. If we misuse it, then there are equal repercussions. Understanding the spiritual meaning of ebb and flow gives us insight into many aspects of life.
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(1) Joseph Campbell & Joseph Campbell’s book The Hero’s Journey, Wikipedia