Saturday, June 13, 2009

Spiritual Time Management

As I sit here this early morning, for a Saturday, and sip my creamy, nutty, cup of Costa Rican coffee, I think about what I have to do today. My mundane affairs are taking over and there is little balance for my mind/spirit. I just have to "make time" for my spiritual affairs.

Making time for any sort of affair is difficult enough, however. So, forget making time for a practice that is not regarded very highly by some and the source of murderous zeal by others. Your spiritual practices are not supported by your society. Perhaps some practices more than others, but even then. There may be more support than ever in a physical sense. There are prayer rooms in some schools and offices for example. But, in the sense of intellectually and emotionally making spiritual practice a priority certainly takes a back seat in most of society.

Constantly, situations develop that may interfere with a process of spiritual practices, or with almost any practice for self-development. There can be obstacles and there has to be a way to defeat them, or at least get past them.

Here is a list of a few things one can do to overcome some obstacles, but not all:

  • Create a rigid schedule of time slots for practice. - This includes scheduling the rest of your time as well, because in order for this to work you will need to be asleep at regular times. The more that is scheduled and followed, then the more likely the next task will be that much easier for it.
  • Turn mundane events into sacred events: I like this way. Mix in a purification ritual with housework, make meals ghanachakras or offering feasts. This way is almost like superimposing one's spiritual practices on daily life.
  • Sometimes, it is easier to schedule certain days for more elaborate practices A day that isn't full of regular stresses. Even in the case of annual celebrations, it is better to celebrate when one can. If Beltaine falls on a Wednesday, for example, and you can only celebrate it fully on the Saturday, then don't beat yourself up over it. I am not saying there is no need for precision, but perhaps, the point is the observation. If an event falls in the middle of the week, having a smaller ritual or observance that day and conducting more elaborate practices on the weekend is a reasonable way to go.
  • Timers: These are handy tools. It was recommended to me by someone I will call "Dawn". She suggested I get a timer, and then at the dollar store my son pointed out a cute apple timer. He didn't know I was looking for one. So, this timer is what I use to do certain tasks at twenty minute intervals. This is good for those of us with short attention spans. Start with a list of little tasks and move through it every 20 minutes. This is good for activities like: meditation, tidying, homework, reading, or writing. Tasks that do not necessarily have an definite end or that can be completed in 20 minutes. However, you shouldn't be concerned if something didn't get completed in the time alloted. If you didn't attain enlightenment in the 20 minutes, then don't worry, you can try the next round on your list.
  • Take breaks: Not just sleep, but time for reflection and composure. Honestly, I find that I mix my writing time with this time, but it is best to keep them separate or blend them better. What mean is, writing can be very cathartic, but sometimes writers need to create time just for the writing and not for any emotional need. Anyway, taking time out for doing nothing is going to be helpful when time is booked floor to ceiling. Just make certain that not all your time is spent doing this!
  • Time Magick: For the more adept at magick, there is the possibilty of using magickal practices to create time fluctuations which may allow for time for certain things. However, this is a topic unto itself. I wouldn't use this as a first resort and there are all sorts of other considerations one has to make in order to succesfully go this route. I will explore this more in a later post.
So, I am off, with my apple timer, to start my housework. This evening my son and I will be conducting a pet blessing ceremony. I will tell you how it goes.

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