3 Things To Boost Your Spiritual Practice

I don’t think I’m the only person in the world who sometimes has trouble walking the walk when it comes to spirituality/religion. Perhaps you’re new to a path and are struggling to move beyond the memorization of ritual to fulfilling connection to the Divine. Maybe you’re a longtime practitioner who’s become stuck on autopilot. Whatever the reason, it’s important to check in with how you’re doing, and if you need to, add a little something to revitalize your practice and live your faith. Here are some simple things you can do that can really boost your connection to Spirit even if you only have a few minutes to spare.

Animals pray, too!

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Interfaith Connection

In my last few posts I’ve been talking about prayer. And as you know, I’ve decided to create my own prayer book. But I haven’t really talked about what prayers I want in the book. I wanted it to be clear that I intend this book to be an interfaith prayer book. It will include pagan prayers/rituals, but that’s certainly not the only thing I will focus on in my project.

My commitment to an interfaith life stems primarily from my relationship with my wife. I consider myself a partner in an interfaith marriage because while I am on this wild spiritual path that as yet does not have a label, Kourtney is agnostic. So I have to make sure that while I am becoming secure in my spiritual beliefs I’m not encroaching upon hers. My family also holds a myriad of traditions and beliefs that differ from my own, but I don’t believe they are right or wrong, just different (unless their beliefs condone human rights violations, of course). But even beyond that, I’ve always been committed to an interfaith dialogue. I think it’s vital for our society to see the value of other beliefs and traditions, I’ve worked with many interfaith programs and groups as an adult to keep myself open and also to connect with other faith workers on a deeper level. The work can be hard but it’s so worth it.

interfaith peace logo

It’s true that this book is primarily for me. But it’s also for those who come after me, who might find value in what I have written. Who am I to say exactly what path they should choose? Isn’t it beneficial in some way to have a sprinkling of many things? isn’t there some wisdom to be gleaned from all faiths? I think so.

May Challlenge!

I’m taking this blog up a notch. I’ve decided that I need to start setting my plans to action instead of just talking about what I want to do– and not just in my spiritual life, but in my everyday life, too. I’m done talking about what I want to do and I’m ready to go for it! I want to jump in, not afraid of making mistakes or being less than perfect. So I’ve decided to do monthly challenges to keep me on my toes, and I’m going to document my progress here. The first challenge? Start my prayer book!

I’ve already decided on a name: The Snow Family Prayer Book. And I found a nice binder that is both functional and book-like on Amazon, and I’ve decided to use grid paper to fill it. This is just a “long term, temporary” space for all the stuff I collect, and eventually I will make an actual book with an actual cover. But for now, this is more than enough to satisfy my need for organization and spirit. This project is going to take more than one month to accomplish, and I think I’ll be adding stuff to this book for years. But my short-term goal is to 1) buy the binder, 2) buy the paper and accessories (pens, maybe some stickers, dividers, blah blah blah) and   3) add five prayers and five rituals by May 31st. I’m so ready to do this, I’m excited just typing about it!

I am very aware that next Friday is May 1st, Beltane. I think that would be a great day to dedicate the binder to it spiritual purpose and really make a public commitment to my challenge. And by public, I really just mean saying it out loud instead of here or in my head. So Friday I’m going to do a little ritual at home and consecrate it. And that will be the beginning of my prayer book!

A Night of Prayer

A couple of nights ago I was browsing through my book collection when I found something I haven’t opened in a long time: my pagan prayer book. The actual book is called A Book of Pagan Prayer by Ceisiwr Serith. I used to use this book all the time when I was still a practicing pagan, and when I opened it and started to read some of the prayers all these memories and sensations came flooding back and it was just a wonderful moment of nostalgia. Continue reading

7 Facts About Me

Since this is a new blog, and some of my new readers don’t really know who I am, I thought I’d do a fun facts post. Here are 7 facts about me!

  • I graduated from a women’s college.

Yes, they still exist! I graduated from Mills College in Oakland, California in 2013. Going to Mills was and amazing experience, and it’s the reason for the next two facts about me. Continue reading

Pulled in Two Directions

I alluded to this in my previous post, but I really want to talk about where I am spiritually. Honestly, I’m stuck. That is, I feel pulled to go into two different directions. On the one hand, I’ve spent the last few years exploring Judaism and really trying to immerse myself it its culture and ritual. I subscribe to Jewish blogs and websites, I say shabbat blessings on friday nights over my candles, I celebrate Pesach and other holidays throughout the year. I added hebcal to my google calendar! And to be honest, I truly enjoy learning more and more about what it means to be a Jew and I crave that stability and ritual. It’s a comfort to know that when I am singing my prayers on friday nights I am joined by many all over the world, even if in my own home I am alone. Also, I have Jewish friends who have been so kind and eager to help me learn. I feel less isolated than I did when I identified as Pagan. Continue reading

Seeking

There has been a lot going on in my life spiritually, and I’ve been wanting to write about it in a safe space with no pressure. I’m not sure if I’m ready to delve into the nitty-gritty of all that I’m going through, but suffice it to say I’m very conflicted about where my spiritual journey is headed. Where am I going? I know I am only 24 (almost 25… WOW), and I have a lot of life left to live, and I know my journey never truly stops, but I have don’t a lot of reinventing myself in terms of my spirituality. I mean, I grew up in various protestant churches, with a splash of Catholicism, and then I separated from the church after high school and moved to Paganism. Then I began exploring Judaism. That’s a lot of spiritual exploration in 7 years! But what I’ve noticed is that my core values and beliefs about the Divine have not actually changed very much going through all three religious movements. What has changed is how I connect with the Divine and what holidays I celebrate. Continue reading