Authentic Spiritual Growth Requires Hugging Your Spiritual Gremlins – Insights from the Wilderness #30

Authentic Spiritual Growth© Dick Rauscher, 2011
A reader recently asked “How do we identify our “blind spots” , those unconscious beliefs that  keep us unaware of the things we are doing or thinking that are harmful to us…or just regressive?

Spiritual GremlinThe best way to discover our “blind spots” or reality distorting beliefs, is to look at the feelings of conflict, pain, anger, or frustration we feel when we encounter a spiritual gremlin…those spiritual teachers that bring up strong emotions in us.

When we are able to sit with our strong feelings without acting on them, and we are willing to be totally honest with ourselves, the unconscious beliefs or “blind spots” behind our emotions will eventually become clear.

For example, let’s take a look at the spiritual gremlins we call “other drivers”…those dangerous, impatient people that tend to speed, tail gate, cut in and out of traffic, use their middle finger to communicate to us their thoughts about our driving IQ, or honk if we delay more than 2 seconds after a light turns green. I could name of a few more of their dangerous driving behaviors, but you get the point.

Authentic Spiritual GrowthHow do we feel about “them”? Annoyed? Angry? Judgmental?

What words do we use to describe them? Jerk? Idiot? Stupid? To be honest, I have to admit that occasionally some even stronger, more descriptive adjectives come to mind.

When I’m done using some of these angry, annoyed adjectives to describe the impatient driving behaviors of other drivers, my wife will sweetly ask “feel better?”

I always respond with a cheerful “Yup…thanks for asking”.

These aggressive drivers are spiritual gremlins for me. They are spiritual teachers because they bring up strong feelings in me, feelings I can use to explore my blind spots…the things I would rather not look at…the shadow things I would rather project onto others.

It might feel better in that moment to assume that I’m a MUCH better driver and human being than those “idiots”, but until I am willing to explore my emotions, and stop my knee-jerk blaming them for the feelings I am having, I will never see my own blind spot. In this case my ability to ignore the times I too drive a bit too aggressively.

Whenever a “spiritual gremlin” judgmentally assumes we are wrong, or a bad person, it’s helpful to remind ourselves that they are almost always showing us “their” blind spots…the shadow things about themselves that they don’t want to deal with or admit.

We may want to think about what they are telling us, that’s how we get input that helps us grow, but we should never let their comments harm our self-esteem.

Be thankful for their opinions, be thankful they are such excellent spiritual teachers, then a) recognize that they are simply projecting their feelings and beliefs onto us so they can feel better about themselves, b) take time to explore their comments for the helpful insights and wisdom they might contain, and c) simply move on.

What others think about us is not important.

What we think or believe about our self is “very” important.

Only “we” can open the doors to our future and unleash the amazing creative energy that dwells inside each of us…the doors that we have unconsciously closed with our blind spots.

The spiritual gremlins we meet on the spiritual path are our best spiritual teachers. They help us become the authentic person we came here to be…to find our life passion…to discover our life purpose…and finally, to find happiness.

Without spiritual gremlins our spiritual journey toward enlightenment and compassion would be far more difficult…if not impossible.

What are yourspiritual gremlins. Let me know by clicking the comment button below.

Click to listen to Dick read this Nugget

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