Sunday, May 8, 2011

Successes and Regressions

Well, Lent and the Easter season are over. I consider my Lenten commitments a partial success.

My first goal was to eat vegetarian on Thursdays, as a part of my church's Lenten tradition of fasting in some form on every Thursday from the start of Lent through Maundy Thursday. This was my most successful practice, since I have been eating healthier, only ate meat on one Thursday, and plan to continue the practice of eating fully vegetarian one day a week(typically Mondays) as a spiritual/health practice from here on out (although I haven't tried out anything from my vegetarian cookbook yet).

My  next goal was to drink primarily water. This, I was somewhat successful in. However, due to frequent long drives as part of my internship responsibilities, as well as the long drive home for Easter, I did drink sodas with caffeine, even if in less frequency and quantity as previously.

My final goal was to do more spiritual readings and continue in my spiritual growth. I consider this my least successful component. In fact, it feels like in the last couple of months, I've regressed into some of my old cynicism of my late college years, prior to finding Unitarian-Universalism and Wicca (and subsequently Druidry). I haven't been consistent in meditating or my daily spiritual practices and readings. And I must say I don't like that feeling. Those days were probably some of the days I felt most lost, without purpose. Some people seem to do okay without the belief in a higher power, or the belief that everything has a purpose and works out as it should in the end. I'm not one of those people. I'm stuck in my dead-end, shady job - on a side note, they did finally catch the kid, he somehow made it back to his home state, and the facility is continuing to do its shady damage control. In addition, I have yet to definitively secure an internship for the next school year, in spite of several interviews with organizations, which I thought went well. As a "generic" theist in my conservative Christian days, I struggled with the question of what it meant when "prayers go unanswered", which I believe was a contributing factor in my shift in religious belief. Now, as a panentheist, my perception of deity is different, and when I pray, it isn't with the perception that He/She/It has that kind of control over anything - although I certainly continue to believe in lighting candles and saying prayers as well wishes, if that makes sense. I believe that the Divine exists both within and without all of existence, but as such, I don't believe that the Divine intervenes in the traditionally believed sense. In a similar vein, those on the nature-based spiritual paths must struggle with what to do or think when spells "don't work". Some interpret it as "it's not meant to be". Others, "I wasn't focused enough" or "wrong timing". Or perhaps a combination of both. As I struggle with the amount of unaccomplished goals I have, in spite of the level of hard work, spellwork, prayers, everything, I struggle with the meanings behind it all as well. I find myself anxious and frustrated, above anything. If I can't find a decent internship, I don't know how that will affect my next school year. And I'm running out of ideas of places to interview. I'm just not sure where to go from here.

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