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Is Your Body Helping or Hindering Your Spiritual Evolution?
By Art Ramsay, Ph.D.

 While we are spiritual beings here on planet earth to grow and evolve spiritually, we need our bodies to progress in ways we could not without them. Therefore, our bodies provide the vehicle from which to navigate our way through this physical world. My body is an essential mechanism to carry out my “mission” for coming to this world.

 The leading paragraph above gives you a sense of our body’s importance. “Of course my body is important, I know that” you might be thinking. But do you realize that in order to carry out your mission or purpose for being here, you also need a healthy body*. Neglecting your body’s health is like neglecting your car’s maintenance. If you don’t do anything but fill the tank with gas/petrol, it will eventually fail in many ways.

 If your car continues to fail due to lack of maintenance, you will be frustrated and not be able to get to where want to be at any given time. The same idea relates to your body. Neglect its health and it won’t serve your needs. I have had a saying most of my life that has helped me maintain a healthy body: “If you don’t take care of your body, it won’t take care of you”.

 So from what has been stated above you might assume this is an article about health. Not really. I am not a health coach, but I have 60 years of experience maintaining a healthy body, and can relate what happens to spiritual growth when the body breaks down. While the “breaking down” of my own body is only an occasional happening, little things do occur that take my mind off of spiritual essence and growth.

 Pain is a great distracter; it demands attention. When my body is in pain, I find it difficult to focus on anything else. Meditation can be helpful assuming I can quiet my mind enough to accomplish this state of mind. Relieving pain can take many forms, some have worked for me, and some have not. Meanwhile, during these periods my spiritual focus diminishes.

 Relieving discomfort of any kind whether it is pain or something else occurring in your body takes time, energy, effort, and focus. My way of dealing with “life” has always been to prevent the cause rather than dealing with the result of something not working. Thus, with pain and other discomforts, determining their cause will serve you better for future irritations.

 I find that the main causes of pain and other distracting effects on your body is how you take care of it. That is, what you eat and drink, how much exercise you get, how much rest you get, and how much stress is in your life. There are other factors leading to bodily discomforts such as your environment, injury, and your lifestyle in general.

 The two main pieces I have focused on most of my life are exercise and what I eat and drink. I have exercised for 60 years, taken supplements for 50, and watched my food/drink intake as a vegetarian for over 20 years. This lifestyle has kept my body mostly healthy, fit, and younger (with the exception of the ‘out of the blue’ blood ailment I encountered the beginning of 2013). I have had few distractions relating to my spiritual growth.

 I only included the above paragraph to illustrate where I am coming from relating to the mentioned activities. Your food and drink intake are very important, as well as exercise if you want to maintain a body that aides your spiritual growth focus. While I consider this aspect of your lifestyle important relative to supporting your spiritual growth focus, equally important is your stress level.

 I have written articles about stress and you can find them in the Achieves. Briefly, know that stress is a silent ‘killer’ in terms of keeping you locked in a lifestyle that does not serve you. Its presence is so subtle that you hardly know it is there until your world comes crashing down around you; beware.

 Relative to what you eat and drink, my suggestion is that you read the ingredients of everything you buy to eat or drink. The food industry is not what it was 30 years ago; it is unsafe territory and you must know what to look for, before you ingest it. The best guidelines I have followed is to buy single items as much as possible. Stay away from complex packaged meals.

 If you spot hydrogenated … whatever (transfat), corn syrup, gluten, and artificial sweeteners of any kind, put it back on the shelf. Since most food you pick up today in the U.S. is GMO you are faced with another dilemma; scientific studies show it has the potential of long term ‘seeds’ leading to major diseases. If possible, buy certified organic foods and local farm raised eggs and meat.

You may be asking yourself why I think all of the above is important. It is important to you if you want to maintain a lifestyle that supports your body, which in turn, supports you spirituality. While the word spirituality my not completely resonant with you, perhaps happiness, self esteem, joy, fun, peace, and love do.

 Words are just mechanisms to express ideas and concepts. Don’t let the words get in your way. Look at what the words point to relative to you life and how it is affected by what I have related to you above. A healthy body aids you soul’s journey here on earth, while an unhealthy body detracts from the execution of that journey.

 Your choice is to do what supports your spiritual quest through a healthy, peaceful, loving, and joy filled lifestyle or ignore the possibilities explained above. It is up to you. I am only a messenger here to point out what I have experienced and know what works or doesn’t. May your life flourish as you adjust your lifestyle to support your essential self and spirit.

 * Some beings may actually come here to experience a sick body. But they are the exception.

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