If you aren’t asking the right questions, you will not grow intellectually or spiritually. Thought-provoking questions are the kinds of deep spiritual questions to ask yourself. Who do you ask to get the right answers?
Children start asking hard questions about life and death as soon as they learn to talk. Half the time, parents, teachers, and other influencers give them answers based on their narrow worldviews. It starts a process of indoctrination into a specific belief system.
In other words, children don’t get the answers that encourage them to seek the correct answers themselves. Instead, they get what others want them to believe. We see the effects of this kind of programming. Over one-half of the world follows one of the prevalent organized religions.
Thought-Provoking Spiritual Questions
What is a thought-provoking question? It is a question that forces you to face hard issues and think about things in a new way. Asking the right questions often leads to eureka breakthroughs in understanding. Who, what, where, when, and why are interrogative words used in probing and investigative questions. (1)
There are two main sources for answers to these challenging questions. Teachers and gurus are one source; the other is yourself. The best teachers use questions to stimulate and instruct without providing a direct answer. The other source for answers to these questions is yourself, your higher self-guru. It is why we recommend documenting these questions and answers in a journal.
The Deep Spiritual Questions to Ask Yourself
Let’s follow a discussion between a student and Guru Tua to see how these ten questions come up. Then will look at the list of questions given to participants which prompted the discussion. We hope this discussion will help those just starting your spiritual journey or the experienced spiritual explorer looking for the next breakthrough.
Questions about Religion and a Higher Power
1) Do you need to follow a religion to be enlightened?
“I respectfully must say no. My experience is that most religions are a dead end and a trap. They do not provide the tools to delve into your consciousness and find your gifts. The major religions sell myths and superstition. Study the stories of Jesus, Mohamad, and Buddha and you will see they had their eureka experiences alone in the wilderness. They openly rejected the organized religions of their families.” ― Guru Tua
Many teachers, including those enshrined in the most prominent religions, tell us to seek our truth. Many sacred texts contain the life stories of those who rejected religion to create a unique path to enlightenment. These famous teachers had questions to ask for spiritual growth. They did not seek answers from their religious leaders or holy books. If we have deep spiritual questions to ask, we should follow their example, go into the wilderness, and meditate. Jesus, Buddha, and Mohammad did not follow a religion; sadly, religions were created in their names.
“The Real Self is dangerous. It is dangerous to the established church, dangerous to the state, dangerous to the crowd, dangerous to tradition, because once a man knows his real self, he becomes an individual.” — Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, Osho
2) Do I need to believe in God to be spiritual?
“Again, respectfully no. Beware of those who tell you must follow an imaginary friend to save your soul or find enlightenment. All Gods are metaphors. A metaphor is a word picture created to give us a way to explain things.
Gods are personifications of attributes and powers; they provide a way to communicate these ideas. But people mistake the metaphor for a factual entity instead of a tool to help them move beyond their current level of thinking. It shows you are exploring the boundaries of your beliefs.” ― Guru Tua
Humankind has over 10,000 gods. I’m sure the one you believe in is just as valid as all others. From Abonsam to Zeus, every God uses identical proofs to verify their existence. These tactics always use circular logic, popularity, and sleight of hand. None of these tactics prove anything.
It’s one of the deep spiritual questions to ask ourselves about the existence of God. Asking the question brings many to the realization that the concept of an imaginary friend is without merit. The dominant culture of Western theology calls people who reach this conclusion atheists or agnostics. An atheist is someone who does not believe in gods. An agnostic is someone who neither believes nor disbelieves in the existence of things that lack evidentiary proof.
Questions to ask for Spiritual Growth on your path
3) Can you become enlightened without any spiritual practices?
“Some teachers have the opinion that if you are alive, you are on a spiritual journey, and it doesn’t matter if they engage in any spiritual practice. I see their point, but only so far as being alive gives you the opportunity to walk the path. So, if you live life and never open the doors to higher states of consciousness, never push the boundaries of awareness, I think that is a wasted life.
Spiritual practice takes many forms and shapes. Asking thought-provoking spiritual questions is perhaps part of your practice. Some people devote their lives to spiritual practice, like the Dalai Lama.
Some people are born with extraordinary insight and gifts. They come into the world as beacons and continue teaching and practicing various techniques. I’m referring to people like the Dalai Lama, Sadhguru, and Osho. Keanu Reeves, Eckhart Tolle, and Russell Brand are also people who exhibit the traits of enlightened people. Each has a unique path.” ― Guru Tua
So, if you aren’t enlightened, it’s alright. Start wherever you are now and look for tools to better yourself.
4) Is it lonely to travel your own path?
“Walking your own path doesn’t mean you always walk alone. You will meet people to teach you processes and lessons. Some are teachers, and some don’t know they the Universe has selected them to help teach you something. You will find like-minded truth seekers. They will be your partners, and some friendships last forever, some for just a short time.
Everyone has their gifts and unique path. Some people only use one tool, like meditation. Many others use multiple tools. It’s one of the essential questions to ask for spiritual growth to take place. The content of your question tells me you have already begun your journey.” ― Guru Tua
Incremental Growth and the Eureka Experience
5) Can I expect a life-changing experience the first time I try something like Japa Meditation (TM) or the Siddhis?
“Although it is possible to have a powerful eureka experience, the first time you learn these powerful techniques, that is not always the case. Enlightenment does not always come in giant leaps; it is often small steps.
Your teacher talks about what you could expect as a range of possibilities. They should never promise a particular experience. Otherwise, it sets up expectations that could hinder your ability to learn or use the technique.” ― Guru Tua
Asking the Right Questions Testing Your Path
6) How do I know if I’m on the right path?
You are on the right path if you are learning and having new experiences. Chances are, you will change your path as you progress. You’ll likely have different teachers and partners along the way. So, it’s vital to test your path regularly. Questioning the validity of your path is one of the strategies we want to become a regular practice. It’s one of the most important things to incorporate into your practice. It begins with asking the right questions.
The most thought-provoking spiritual questions challenge your sacred ground of beliefs. If you’ve been on the same track for some time, it becomes difficult to question or change your beliefs. However, once you change a part of your philosophy, it will help you avoid wasting time.
“Do not be afraid to change your path or your teacher if you find you are on the wrong path. Focus on finding and using processes that expand awareness or lead to higher states of consciousness.” ― Guru Tua
Breaking free from religious tradition can be challenging; they don’t want you to ask thought-provoking spiritual questions. They want you to accept their mythology and superstition as fact.
Religions make it hard to leave because they want to keep you a customer and stay in control of the cultural narrative. If you remain determined, you can do it. Find other like-minded freethinkers. Do independent research and minimize your exposure to their propaganda and indoctrination techniques. You need to find a teacher or group where everyone is free to ask questions.
Beginning the Hero’s Journey
7) What is the Hero’s Journey?
Within our being is the driving force behind our questions. It’s the inner voice and curiosity about yourself and the universe. If you embark on the spiritual quest, you are on a Hero’s Journey, and it requires the courage and persistence of a Hero.
This adventure follows a similar pattern in many ancient cultures that developed our tools to explore consciousness. Joseph Campbell is a professor of comparative religious studies. He did extensive research on the spiritual practices of people around the globe. He found a familiar story and pattern in these cultures, calling this pattern the Hero’s Journey. (2)
“The usual hero adventure begins with someone from whom something has been taken, or who feels there is something lacking in the normal experience available or permitted to the members of society. The person then takes off on a series of adventures beyond the ordinary, either to recover what has been lost or to discover some life-giving elixir. It’s usually a cycle, a coming and a returning.” — Joseph Campbell
An Authentic Spiritual Path
8) Where and how should I start my spiritual walk?
One of the first deep spiritual questions to ask is how to start the inner quest. Keeping a spiritual journal is one of the best tools to help with our Hero’s Journey. This simple but effective tool is your best coach. If you are honest in your writing, it will help you see how you are progressing. Likewise, it will show you any unhealthy patterns of thought or actions.
More often than not, growth is incremental. Therefore, a spiritual journal, or book of shadows, is essential. We do not see how far we have come unless we see progress in our thoughts, experience, and practice. It’s hard to see the small incremental changes of presence in our lives. We can also spot trends in thinking or behavior that will help us adjust our practice. Having a hand-written document of our experience is an invaluable tool. You’ll find the right questions to ask for spiritual growth once you begin to forge your own unique path.
“The tools of seated and moving meditation expedite our natural growth. These are the processes that open the doors of awareness. Many Sages believe the reason we are here is to progress on the path toward greater awareness and enlightenment.” ― Guru Tua
Pre-Existence, Eternal Existence, and the Hereafter
9) What happens when we die in the afterlife or reincarnation?
“These are the kinds of thought-provoking spiritual questions to ponder. No one knows the answers; perhaps we will find out, and perhaps not. There are many theories, and many religions use fear of death, our existential fear making people customers.” ― Guru Tua
The concept of life after death, afterlife rewards, and punishment is organized religions’ best-selling tools. The idea that you must join a religion to gain afterlife rewards or suffer the consequences of afterlife punishments is a real money-maker. But, if the same God that offers rewards also promises punishment and eternal torture, that is extortion, not salvation.
Evil, Inequity, and Injustice
10) Why is there so much evil, injustice, and inequity in the world?
One of the thought-provoking spiritual questions children ask has to do with the inequities they view in the world. You don’t need to look far to see the issues. Cultures around the world perpetuate the discrimination and subjugation of the female gender. Children see how boys and girls are treated differently, from opportunities to fundamental rights and benefits.
“Injustice and inequity are the results of greed and prejudice. The people and organizations who create and perpetuate these problems don’t think they are evil. They are people who are fueled by capitalism and organized religion using their beliefs to justify their violence. They use our fears and desires to sell the world everything from the afterlife to toothpaste.
Part of growing in your spiritual walk is to find a way to make the world a better place despite this undercurrent. Listen to your heart and find a cause that resonates. Do what you can within your sphere of influence to correct the issue.” ― Guru Tua
Other Deep Spiritual Questions to Ask
Now that you’ve seen a dialogue exchange. Here are the questions which prompted the questions above. Get out a pen and paper and jot down some quick one or two-sentence answers to the following questions. Please don’t spend too much time analyzing them. Whatever comes to mind first is what you need. The important thing is to begin asking the right questions which challenge your current thinking, values and beliefs.
Section 1: Questions about the self
– Who am I?
– What is my purpose in life?
– What are my values?
– What are my beliefs about the universe?
– How can I improve myself?
– Who am I beyond my physical body and my thoughts?
– What is my purpose in life, and how can I fulfill it?
– How can I cultivate compassion and empathy for myself and others?
– How am I holding myself back, and how can I overcome these limitations?
Section 2: Questions about the world
– What is the meaning of life?
– What happens after we die?
– Where does morality come from?
– How can we find inner peace?
– What is the role of spirituality in society?
-How can I make a positive impact on the world around me?
Section 3: Questions about God or a higher power
– What is God?
– Why do bad things happen to good people?
– Is there a divine plan?
– How can we connect with God?
– What happens to those who do not believe in God?
– What are my beliefs about death and the afterlife?
– How do my beliefs about life after death shape my perspective on life?
The questions above will give you a snapshot of your core beliefs. They are intended to be thought-provoking spiritual questions to ask yourself. By reflecting on these questions, you can gain a deeper understanding of yourself, connect with a higher power (if you believe in one), and cultivate a more meaningful and fulfilling life. So take some time to sit with these questions, allowing the answers to unfold naturally and authentically. Who knows what insights and revelations they might bring?
Enlightenment is a never-ending journey. You never get there. There will always be another level. There will always be more questions to ask and more lessons to learn. Everyone has different gifts that are in their DNA. Hence, everyone needs to find the best way of awakening. There are a variety of spiritual tools or technologies for this specific purpose.
It’s essential to be a seeker and not a follower. Don’t get sidetracked by religion. Mythology and superstition become traps. Your spiritual path of truth is something you create. Having questions about enlightenment and the path is a good sign. Keep testing your practice, seeking ways to improve.
People have been investigating and exploring consciousness for eons, which is the essence of spiritual exploration. Curiosity and the desire to explore are the driving forces of human nature. The creativity and experimentation of these early pioneers result in a suite of tools to expand awareness—some of these techniques open the doors to higher states of consciousness.
(2) Joseph Campbell’s book The Hero with a Thousand Faces, Wikipedia