During the classical and medieval period Spirituality meant being one with god, while Traditional Spirituality had their own interpretations which were rooted in religion. Modern Spirituality on the other hand centered on values and the meaning by which people live by. To embrace all of human life experiences and/or/both to discover one’s purpose. I realized that the word itself was so broad and had room for different interpretations that it was difficult or impossible to narrow it down.
Spirituality is a deep awareness that there is something greater, something more than our sensory experiences, and that we are part that. It is an individual journey that has to do with their sense of purpose and peace. A forming of deep connections with the awareness of self and with others without any reservations.
Wisdom on the other hand means the ability to think, understand and act using knowledge. It is about experiencing life and the use of intuition. Using attributes such as unbiased judgment, compassion, self-experienced knowledge and non-attachment. Wisdom to me can be shared but not taught. What use is knowledge to us if not experienced? Only when put into action are we able to understand its value and meaning.
While many claim that ‘Spiritual Wisdom’ is lost in the way yoga is taught today, only a handful have actually experienced or understood its true significance. The human mind is so complex that we are always in search for what we do not have. The more we seek, the more disenchanted we become and, in the process, we forget to EXPERIENCE.
Spiritual Wisdom or Prajña or Pragya (Sanskrit: प्रज्ञ) as प्रज्ञा, प्राज्ञ and प्राज्ञा is the purest form of supreme wisdom achieved through deep Intuitive Insight.
It cannot be taught and it is not about blindly following narratives, as this leads to harm and creates a further disconnect of an individual’s growth in their spirituality. When we give or surrender our control for the benefit of others, then we are relinquishing our own identity and values. You see as teachers, educators and influencers, we have to be transparent about our own individual motives. We can only teach from the reservoir of our personal understanding of yoga and experiences and there is wisdom to be gained from this.
It is not a product that can be sold nor can it be used as a means to sway the present constructs and nor can it be forced upon. It’s an individual’s choice. Not everyone who steps on their mat are ready or open to this journey. Whatever their reasons, as teachers it is our dharma to guide, share and respect their practice…… after all is this not Spiritual Wisdom?
The western lens is scientific in nature, based on logical and rational viewpoints where everything needs to fit into a box or be labelled. The eastern view is spiritual and mystical and diverse, its inner dependent embraces all aspects of one’s experiences to realize our true essence. The word ‘atma’ not only holds different meanings but also reflects different nuances depending on the context it is used.
According to Hinduism we are all born with atman. Ātman (Atma, आत्मा, आत्मन्) is a Sanskrit word which means "essence, breath, spirit." In Hinduism, Atman is considered as eternal, imperishable and in Vedanta it is the witness consciousness that observes all.
· Anything related to Atman is Adhyaatma,
· The study of Atman is Aatmavidya.
· One who is seeking spirituality is known as Brahmanjignasa .
The nature of our intellect is to discriminate, divide and feed the ego. We perceive what is necessary for survival. We strengthen our own beliefs by constantly living in a state of reaction. Functioning from past impressions that have been accumulated through our senses. We have either become slaves to our intellects or to the voices / narratives of others.
‘Consciousness’ already resides within but our external and internal factors like life, ego, maya, and desires are barriers, our judgments, attachments and belief systems prevent us from experiencing and realizing our own potential. We are so focused on trying to reach a goal and questioning the bigger picture that we forget to connect with our own inner sense of self.
Would it be fair to say that before WE claim that Spiritual Wisdom is lost in today’s yoga WE ourselves need to have a deep personal understanding of it ?