Spirituality: The Art of Living
by Tejvan Pettinger

Spirituality teaches that the art of living is to find real abiding happiness and satisfaction. This elusive inner happiness will come when we can discover our inner self. It is spirituality that helps us to find this inner reality, which is our inner self. 
Many people seek after happiness in life. Consciously or unconsciously we wish to be happy. The essence of spirituality is discovering the joy in life. The happiness synonymous with spirituality is an inner happiness that does not depend on success in the material world. Spirituality tells us that real inner joy comes not through the fulfillment of our desires but in reducing our desires.

 Spirituality is simplicity. When life is complex, complicated and cluttered we feel under stress. We have no time to appreciate the finer things in life. If we can minimize the demands from the outer world; if we can minimize our desires we can enjoy the inherent simplicity of life. As Sri Chinmoy suggests:
“Spirituality is simplicity, sincerity, purity and humility. A simple life helps the seeker grow. A sincere life helps the seeker fly and dive. A pure life helps the seeker become one with God’s Vision and God’s transcendental Reality. A humble life helps the seeker embrace the length and breadth of the entire world. ”

 Spirituality involves living in the present. This is an essential necessity to master the art of living. When we worry about the future we create problems that may not occur. When we regret the past we waste our precious time. It is only by focusing on the present moment that we can practice the essence of spirituality. In our highest meditation we go beyond the domain of time. Spirituality is not encumbered by ideas of the past and future. Spirituality believes in the eternal now.

 
In the world there are teeming imperfections. There seems an endless list of problems. If we are not careful we could spend all our time finding fault and criticizing others. Our criticisms may be justified but they will never bring peace of mind. Furthermore through criticizing the world we do not advance its progress even one iota. Spirituality teaches us to avoid judgment. If there is anything to judge it is just ourself. Spirituality says we should not criticize the world but love the world and appreciate the good qualities of others.
Judge nothing
You will be happy.
Forgive everything
You will be happier.
Love everything
You will be the happiest. ~ Sri Chinmoy
Spirituality does not require us to renounce the world. Spirituality involves acceptance. If we accept the world as it is, then we can help offer something positive to the world. If we wish to change the world the great saints encourage us to first change ourselves.
“Be the change you wish to see in the world.”- Mahatma Gandhi
Spirituality says that inner happiness comes from living not for ourselves but living for others. When we only seek to please our ego then we can only get a limited happiness, our pleasure will be limited. Our ego doesn’t know real happiness; no matter how many desires are fulfilled we always want more. However through selfless action, through serving others we can go from a limited human perspective to becoming aware of an extended reality.
To expand our consciousness is the real art of living. In the outer world we may know many things, but spirituality shows us how to learn the only thing that really matters. Who am I?