Inner  Frontier
Fourth Way Spiritual Practice

 

Inner Work


For the week of October 3, 2016

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Inhabiting Energy

(Basic Inner Work 8)

Spiritual energies pervade our inner world. The quality, quantity, and degree of organization or disorganization of these energies determine the quality of our life, both inner and outer. Much of our inner work concerns developing our ability to perceive energies and the right use, accumulation, digestion, and organization of energies.

One rudimentary and indirect way to perceive our energy level is to judge how alert, awake, and present we are. Energies largely determine all that. Through this metric of how alert and awake we are on a given day, we can begin to see that how we live affects our energy level. This may be obvious in the ordinary way, but to help ourselves along the spiritual path we need to pay even more attention to it. This is managing our life to manage our energies.

Clear examples include the energy effects of how well and how much we eat, sleep, and exercise. The use of tobacco, drugs, or excessive alcohol reduce our energy level. Part of our spiritual path is to conduct these aspects of our life like an experiment, with the aim of maximizing the quality and quantity of our inner energy. Many people try to do that to some extent. But we want to see into the subtleties of how various bodily actions affect our ability to be present, to meditate, to maintain ourselves in the face of adversity. We notice how emotional storms affect our energies and that drives our effort toward equanimity. This is all uniquely individual and changes day to day and year to year. The point is to have our body produce inner energies and not waste them.

When we fill our body with the sensitive energy and inhabit it, we form what is, momentarily at least, like a second or inner body made of that energy. By inhabiting our body, we are actually inhabiting that energy, which mediates and enables our direct, visceral contact with our body. It is akin to wearing clothes: we create this inner clothing that will carry us into the spirit, like in the parable of the wedding banquet.

We learn to focus our attention on the air we breathe and extract the energy within it. We send that into our body to help build our reservoir of sensitive energy, to provide the material for our inner body. And as we do that, we maintain our presence in our inner body, we inhabit our energy body, so as to be there to receive the additional energy we breathe.

We learn that the inner stillness is not an absence of sound, thought, and movement. Rather it the very substance of our consciousness, the conscious energy. We lean back into that cognizant stillness. We open into its vast space without boundaries. In that space, we marinate in peace and equanimity. We let our spirit, our soul, our self spread wide, with no holding on. This welcoming ocean of peace abides within us.

In the deeper realms of prayer, we open our spiritual heart. As we address our yearning toward the Sacred, a sparkling energy of light and love flows into us from behind. It warms our heart and fills our being, transforming us in the process.

In the deepest reach of all, we share our very identity, our self, with the Sacred One. And in those moments, though the energies cascade down into us, we realize that our identity with the Sacred matters even more.

While all this inner work with energies seems personal, it is much more than personal. It affects the world around us, in positive ways. Indeed, all true inner work is an act of service, service to the Sacred and service to our society. How that works is for each of us to see and discover.

For this week, please delve more into your own inner work with energies.


     

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