The abs class fitness instructor at the gym likes to remind us that in order to get a strong core, eventually you have to do crunches. You can do lots of other things too, but, eventually, you have to contract those muscles, and that means crunching. You have to do the work, and you have to do the right work.
I feel you, Niki: I’m also not doing the work I need to be doing.
I’m reading other people’s inspirational and thought-provoking posts and thinking about their opinions instead of working on my own. I’m making new Pagan memes: seeking out quotes, matching them with photos, playing with fonts and frames. I’m also going to the gym and doing my crunches. What I’m not doing is authentic prayer.
Part of my current spiritual practices is praying prior to meals and sleep, but the prayers I’ve been using are the same as the ones I’ve been using for more than a decade and they no longer match my beliefs. They’ve become almost superstitions. Since I think best in writing, I’ve been telling myself to write it out – here or in my journal – and start revising my daily rituals, but the right time to do that never seems to be now.
This isn’t the right time either. We have “House of Cards” on, which hardly sets the right atmosphere for deep introspection or real spiritual work, and I’ve got a sleeping cat in my lap that I don’t want to disturb by getting up. But I need to start this work… one day.
It is like a physical exercise routine: you know it is good for you; you know you’ll feel better when you do it; you know that once you build a new habit, it will be relatively easy to maintain; but, somehow, it is still just easier to keep finding excuses and keep putting it off. Maybe, like with exercise, I need a real motivation to go from excuses to actions. I had reasons – reasons that were very specific and deeply important to me – for starting to go to the gym, and I had measurable results to keep me motivated. To do the spiritual work I feel I need to do, I need a calling. A calling won’t come from my gods, for they don’t speak, so I must find it within, and I must find in that calling both reason and reward.