Black & White or Gray?
Is spirituality black & white, or are there gray areas? The answer to that question depends upon who you ask and the context of the question.
Spirituality and religion have a major tenet in common, self-discipline. Other tenets, such as love, compassion, tolerance and kindness are necessary for a highly spiritual existence but tend to get lost in religious dogma. Religion is about allowing yourself to be controlled. Spirituality is about releasing yourself from control. A highly spiritual existence is a body, mind and soul experience. Self-discipline is the tie that binds those three aspects together. However, that self-discipline tends to be viewed as a gray area for many who seek to justify behavior that is detrimental to body, mind or soul. Love, compassion, tolerance and kindness seem rather black & white on the surface. However, many people seek and find gray areas in those tenets also, usually as justification for prejudice or feeding the ego. I have encountered many people who view their personal beliefs as universal truth, usually because it is easier than soulful introspection. I have heard people say "that is MY truth" or "everyone has their own truth." Those statements couldn't be further from the actual truth. Everyone has their own BELIEFS but there is only ONE universal truth. Gray areas exist only in personal beliefs. If one persons belief is diametrically opposed to another person's belief, we can only infer that one or neither are the truth. I don't claim to know all the truths of the universe but many of those truths are self-evident. To learn and know those truths, one need only practice some honest, soulful introspection and sometimes, just a little common sense. Then personal beliefs and practices can more easily be aligned with universal truth. Ego and human attachments must be cast aside to emerge from spiritual gray areas. Love before anger, humility before ego, connection before addiction, giving without expectation, respecting and nurturing the body, broadening the mind and connecting the soul are keys to emerging from a spiritual gray area. Love leads to light, human attachments lead to darkness. Beliefs are individual. Truth is universal. Beliefs are subjective. Truth is objective.