A relationship is spiritual if it is truly honest. It does not mean that you sit around and talk about spiritual powers, spiritual objects, spiritual images and spiritual levels. That is all idle talk if it is not imbued with the presence and the awareness that is spirituality. True relationship and true love engender true spirituality. Here you know that you are not alone in the universe, not simply because you are in a relationship with one person, but because you are in a meaningful relationship with life and with the world.
You were sent here to give. If you are giving, then your spirituality is expressing itself. If you are not giving, then you are frustrated and your spirituality is still in the realm of speculation. Therefore, the emphasis is for you to discover what you have to give. This will teach you about your design. Once you learn about your design, you will learn about your Designer. This is how God is experienced. Perhaps sometime later in life when you look back and see what you have done, you will say, “Now I know who I am. This is what I came here to do,” and you will experience the Designer. Your meaning in the world is about your design and your Designer. Beyond this world it is different. You came here to do something and you came here to give. You came here to find certain people to join with you in making your contribution. If that is being accomplished, your spiritual life is active already and the awareness will be with you and the presence will be with you.
Concern yourself with the work you have to do in the world. Concern yourself with opening yourself to those people whom you recognize as partners and participants in your giving. There will be spiritual, mental and physical thresholds through which you must pass. Here your physical life will serve your mental life, which in turn will serve your spiritual life. In this way, you will be uplifted and everything will have purpose, meaning and direction for you.
Spiritual practice is important. Yet you must determine whether you need to have a formal spiritual practice or not. Spiritual practice is an expedient here. It will save you valuable time. Yet it must be wedded with meaningful work and honest engagement with others. In this way, you will reap its great benefits. Without an arena of expression, however, spiritual practices are like seeds that will not sprout, a crop that will not produce, an endeavor that will not yield its intended benefits. That is why when you speak of spirituality, speak of work in the world and of meaningful relationships, for this is where spirituality lives and expresses itself through the love and labor of people.
What about sexuality and spirituality?
There are many questions concerning sexuality and spirituality. People’s experience of error and discord around sexuality can be so substantial that they might want to escape it altogether. Sometimes sexuality is not necessary, and that physical energy, or life force, will be expressed in a different way. This is appropriate for people who will remain single or celibate, for ascetics in monasteries, and sometimes for very creative people who need to channel all of that energy into their work.
For everyone, the challenge is to manage sexuality wisely because it represents the movement of your life force. You must become aware of this life force and find constructive expression for it in your life. Sexuality is harmful to people when this expression is misappropriated or given out mindlessly or used to gain a preference or a benefit. Sexuality is helpful to your spiritual development if it engenders both intimacy through union with your mate and the propagation of children. After all, without sexuality, you would not be in the world; no one would be in the world. Therefore, denying your sexual impulses is hardly a testament to the grace of life. Yet managing this vital energy is necessary. As a married person, you will be attracted to other people from time to time. That is normal. Some people may be stimulating to you. But here again you must support that which is essential to your well-being. Here restraint is necessary. You cannot have everyone you want, you cannot do everything you want, you cannot own everything you want, you cannot go in every direction you want and you cannot have all the experiences you want. This is obvious if you will look. Therefore, give yourself to that which you value most highly, and things of lesser value are either satisfied in the process or given up.
Would you throw away or damage a life-long marriage for a night in bed with someone else? This is an important question. If you would, you obviously do not value your marriage and are seeking to undermine it in the name of personal satisfaction. There are even more devious expressions of the use of sexuality where it becomes a liability. Attraction between people is normal to a certain extent, but it becomes aberrant when people are using sexuality to gain other favors.
If you understand the power of sexuality and its importance, you will not want to misuse it. You will want to protect it, save it and use it wisely. If you feel sexual and yet you are without a mate, use your sexual energy to deepen your spiritual practice and to accomplish things in the world. It is only energy after all. It is not sexual in origin. It is merely something you feel in a certain part of your body that expresses itself in a sexual way. You do not need to act upon this. In the same manner, sometimes you become very angry with people and you want to hurt them. Does that mean you go ahead and hurt them? No, not if you want to have your life be constructive and meaningful.