The presence of spiritual addiction

My addiction is no secret. Spirituality is my drug of life. My spiritual adventures are a relentless romp of reaching for the Divine in all that exists and they have this terminal quality to them: I have a singular devotion to the ultimate connection with God/Spirit/Jesus/the One/Universal Consciousness. I keep telling myself, once I am truly connected, I will no longer have the urge.

And, no, death does not count.

Just an aside here: yes, I know I have been a disappearing spirit ever since Christmas but I’ve been busy becoming a licensed counselor and setting up a practice. Feel free to explore at One Spirit Counseling.

Now back to that addiction thing. Contemplative Outreach has me on their mailing list. It is important that you understand that I want to BE contemplative outreach. The concept is much like the Jesuit’s contemplative in action: to be so in touch with God/Spirit that the communication is continuous, as if we are One, and I am transformed as a result, able to be that transformed soul seamlessly in the world, in action alone and with others.

Any time I see an invitation for a spiritual exercise or to learn a spiritual technique or engage in a spiritual lesson, my fingertips start tingling, my palms get sweaty, and my vision goes dark around the edges. The good guys at Contemplative Outreach have joined forces with the lovely people at Spirituality and Practice and they are offering a year-long series of online retreats. Those retreats call to me much like the street-drug vendor whispers to a junkie.

(C’mon . . . it doesn’t cost much. You know you want it.)
[but I’m on a budget]
(I’ll make you a deal. Buy all five at once and you’ll save twenty-five bucks)
[wow – that’s like getting half of one free]
(And I’ve all your favorites. Lectio Divina . . .)
[Oh!]
(Contemplative Living . . .)
[Stop it!]
(Forgiveness . . .)
[la la la la la la I can’t hear you la la la la]
(and a Practice Group)
[Sold]

Can one have too much spirituality? The shaman in me knows that Spirit is all that exists so the question is moot.

I would pray for willpower but that is feeding the oxymoron.

©2014 by Barbara L. Kass

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8 Responses to “The presence of spiritual addiction”

  1. jeffstroud Says:

    Great to hear from you! I understand completely! Is there a difference between an addiction and a Passion?

    When I live in community at the retreat center at Easton Mountain Greenwich NY. Those type of workshops, events, were opportunities almost at my finger tips. I availed myself of what I could, if not that at least I could rub shoulders with people who were doing that work, ask questions, be in their energy. Plus the energy of the space and grounds allowed for a lot of the practice to happen naturally, which living a daily life in a city or suburb does not afford on the surface.

    One can have too much spirituality if it is only being brought in and not given out. As in recovery, the Idea of giving away what you have received is the fulfillment of a daily practice.

    Congratulations on your continual journey of Being!

    I am Love, Jeff

  2. Barbara Kass Says:

    Thank you for some new words to describe my addiction, Jeff. Passion is definitely more palatable. Being in the energy of others who are doing the work is infinitely healthier than hanging out with addicts. I think the fine line — the point at which I know the difference — is when I answer the question: am I coming to know the God/Spirit/One/Universal Consciousness within me? And, am I responding to others from that consciousness within me?

  3. Laurie Buchanan Says:

    Barbara – I was just out to your new website and gave myself the Grand Tour, I love it!

    What a wonderful addiction you have. I share the same addiction and enjoy getting my friends hooked, too.

    • Barbara Kass Says:

      Hi, Laurie! Thank you SO much for checking me out :-). Not many people know this, but Sigmund and I share a birthday: May 6. (How Freudian is that?) Now that the initial crunch is over and I have a little bit of time luxury, I actually may get to spend time visiting and responding to Tuesdays with Laurie.

  4. ntexas99 Says:

    Barbara – I also jumped over to your website and took the tour, and even decided to send a message through your contact page, just to welcome you to your new space.

    Your addiction, or passion, for spirituality is obviously something that drives your success, and keeps you in forward motion. I’ve been fortunate enough to witness, over time, the evolution of your voice (to some extent), and one of the things that has always been something that I associate with your voice is the presence of authenticity. Your voice resonates with that passion, fueling everything in all directions. I suspect you will continue down the path of not only opening new doors and windows, but you will generously bring others with you as you discover new ideas.

    Thanks, again, for sharing some thoughts with me as I muddle through my own questions about spirituality as of late. I already feel better for having broached the subject out loud. Even the fact that I was deeply questioning my beliefs had me feeling ashamed, and your comment (and your referral to Dark Nights of the Soul by Thomas Moore) helped me release some of that shame, and see this period as a period of growth, rather than a period of failure.

    Best of luck to you as you continue to explore the possibilities.

    • Barbara Kass Says:

      Nancy — we must question to grow. I am so glad that you shared with us your fears of the unknown. You are treading into unknown territory and it is all you — a place that not many people grant themselves. Most people want to remain with the known, with what feels comfortable and familiar. It brings with it the greatest of discoveries: the real person you are.

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