Adventures In Spiritual Living

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Religion of the Spirit
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Religion of the Spirit

William Cooper

Religion of the spirit arises from following the leading of the spirit within each of us.  It maintains that we are all beloved children of the creator of everything and that our creator parent wants to have an on-going relationship with us right now.

Through this relationship, our parent will reveal God’s values, God’s meanings, and God’s truths, which all revolve around the power and effect of love.  Religion of the spirit transforms us through the attractiveness of our deity parent’s loving values and methods.  This transformation causes us to become progressively more like God.  As children of God, we will naturally grow to be like God and will have appropriate responsibilities and authority entrusted to us.

Our growth toward god-likeness begins as soon as we begin to be attracted to the leading of the spirit within us and our growth continues forever.  Love, tolerance, forgiveness, and service are attitudes and actions our parent wants us to have.  

Why call this religion?

Your religion is your heartfelt loyalty to your highest and truest convictions.  It is what you believe is of highest value and has meaning for everyone.  Religion as we are talking about it is individual and unique.  When your highest and truest convictions are given to you and confirmed to you by the spirit within you, then your religion is religion of the spirit.

Why is this “of the spirit?”

We mortals are simultaneously living two lives.  One of our lives is material much like other animals.  Our other life is spiritual, and it goes largely overlooked, denied, or deferred until the end of our material life.  In fact, we are both material and spiritual right now.  The substance of spiritual things revolves around love, compassion, trust, mercy, forgiveness, and service – all generously and unselfishly available to everyone.  These are values which your inner spirit will readily confirm for you as valid and true.  

Spirit looks for meanings and values in our experience and confirms them to us as being true through a feeling of rightness.  Spirit is not material, but it is real.  It is here.  It is now and always with us.  It is spiritually tangible through this feeling of rightness, and you can train yourself to sense it. 

What spirit is at work in you?

Spirit functions within you in several ways.  Your growing soul is the center of the spiritual you.  As you mature, you migrate your center of identity from your material mind to your soul, thereby firmly becoming your spiritual self.  Also, within you is 

  • your individual presence of your spiritual Father, the creator of everything that is.  
  • the spirit of truth which is your individual presence of Jesus of Nazareth.  
  • the universe Mother Spirit who provides the mind that you presently function with and guides you through this earthly life.  

These spirits are functioning in you right now.  Normally you are not aware of them because they lie just outside your consciousness.  In religion of the spirit, you invite these spirits to lead and guide you by presenting you with insights/realizations of the highest and truest values.

  Religion of the spirit is concerned only with things spiritual.  It is not a set of doctrines, creeds, or dogmas.  It is your living, growing, adapting, and always improving philosophy of the highest and best way of living which is revealed to you by the inner spirit.

How can you be led by the spirit?

Encourage the spirit to lead and teach you what is of the highest importance, value, and meaning.  Encouragement involves opening your awareness, exploring, living, experiencing, and evaluating.  The only requirement is to respond with attraction to the experience of living according to your highest values of love, mercy, forgiveness, and service—desire to be righteous and make a sincere effort to act accordingly.  Progress is guaranteed and progress at any speed is sufficient.

   Religion of the spirit is unlike any other form of religion because what it discloses to you is true and transformative.  It brings with it new spiritual power to live a life saturated with love and dedicated to service.

Religion of the spirit puts you in touch with the spirit teacher who will teach you everything you need to become righteous like God.  It puts you in the family of God, brings life everlasting, and assures that your present life is advancing the spiritual you.  Someday your animal life will end, but your life as a spirit will continue.  Religion of the spirit advances your spiritual growth even while the animal you still lives.

What can life be like?

Religion (ideal way of living) that is motivated entirely out of love, tolerance, mercy, service, etc. makes all life more worthwhile, filling it with high purpose, dignifying it with transcendent values, inspiring it with superb motives and comforting the soul with sustaining hope, even assurance, that the gap between what should be and what is can eventually be closed.  True religion releases faith and courage from the spiritually reinforced soul for daily living and unselfish service.

Permit me to make some personal comments on what it is like to trust the spirit to lead you to truth and to our deity parents.  It is easy to have trust issues in this world, so at the beginning of this path it felt risky to trust my eternal future to what might be self-deception.  But Jesus was and is the great advocate of religion of the spirit and the life Jesus lived to portray the nature of our Father was so charming and persuasive that I was willing to discount the risk.  

Once you enter on this path, even cautiously, you begin to experience the promised consequences and to feel your faith in the goodness of our Father increasing within your heart.  These experiences move you noticeably in the direction of being convinced of the validity of the path.  

The promised results of inner peace and calmness do come, and you recognize these as arising from your spiritual self.  More and more, your motivation arises from love and your desire to help and be of service rather than from some desire for personal profit or satisfaction. These spiritual motivations please you.  You become more aware and alert for insights into the will of God and opportunities to do it.  A sense of spiritual healthiness and vitality often fills you.  

You begin taking a long-distance view of life.  The wonderful things you can imagine no longer seem so urgent because they are not limited to a material lifetime but are unbounded by the scope of eternity.  In eternity all good things are possible and even probable.  

At an early point on this path of trusting the spirit to lead, you begin to recognize a comfortable connectedness with other people, animals, plants, and even nonliving things.  Then there is the very special feeling of connectedness with other people motivated by spirit.  This is a strong feeling of attraction.  It brings excitement, a heightened sense of possibilities and opportunities, optimism, and enthusiasm.  Things are spiritually awesome when you are with these special people.  On this path your respect and caring for everyone increases but your affection for others striving to follow the spirit is extraordinary.  You come to have a special spiritual love and connectedness for them.  You have a sense of belonging and of them being your special people.

On this path you will have insights into the will of God and how to do it.  These feel great.  It is like being an insider discovering wonderful, meaningful mysteries and partial solutions to them. This path is an experiential school where you are taught by the headmaster how to succeed. These insights feel real and significant and related to an unrevealed and magnificent destiny.  This path is more than enough to keep an active and curious person busy unwinding and discovering truth.

Well, that is about all I can say right now about the feeling of trusting the spirit, except it is my conviction that when you trust the spirit to lead, it will never fail you. 

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