Oftentimes you hear people say they are “spiritual” or seeking spirituality… and oftentimes, they don’t know the first thing about being spiritual. It is a higher power and feeling of knowing your purpose that comes from within. One does not have to go around claiming they are spiritual because one is content with already KNOWING that they are. One’s spiritualness shows through their kind actions and kind words and the warmth that emanates a glow from within their eyes.
Wikipedia defines spirituality as “an inner path enabling a person to discover the essence of his/her being or the deepest values by which people live.”
“Spirituality exists wherever we struggle with the issues of how our lives fit into the greater scheme of things. This is true when our questions never give way to specific answers or give rise to specific practices such as prayer or meditation. We encounter spiritual issues every time we wonder where the universe comes from, why we are here, or what happens when we die. We also become spiritual when we become moved by values such as beauty, love, or creativity that seem to reveal a meaning or power beyond our visible world. An idea or practice is “spiritual” when it reveals our personal desire to establish a felt-relationship with the deepest meanings or powers governing life.”
Spirituality is essentially listening to one’s inner voice and realizing what your purpose is here on Earth. Spirituality is also harnessing that power within us that enables us to be our best person in ANY and ALL situations. It is hard to come by, especially in New York City. Surrounded by noise, distractions, the rat race, ambition, competition, people tainted by the dark side of the city, selfishness, insecurity – it is no wonder that many New Yorkers lack spirituality and are essentially walking dead inside.
It has took me many years to develop a good ear to listen to my inner voice. Although I admit there are times when I have gone astray and when I have allowed people to lead me astray, my inner voice will always let me know and I eventually find my way back to my spiritual center. The best way to hear your own inner voice is to spend time alone and to free your mind of distractions, ridding yourself of people who add no value to your spiritual path. Some do this through meditation or prayer or journaling. Others get involved in activities that help to bring out their spiritual nature and cut out those activities that detract you from your path of enlightenment.
For me, philanthropy has helped me to become more reflective and contemplative about my life, others’ lives, and our purpose in this lifetime. Who and what is in front of you, is your teacher for that moment. My teachers today are the women you see in this photo at our luncheon.
I look forward to my weekly volunteer work with the seniors at Mount Sinai because I see them as my teachers. Every experience we spend together, is a learning moment for me and helps align me closer to my spiritual path.
Today we took the seniors on a private guided tour of the Metropolitan Museum of Art on 81st street and 5th Avenue. It is my favorite museum in the city. To know that some of the seniors have not gone to this museum in 30 years just amazes me. For them to see artwork created in the 10th century, brought them to think of their own paths and histories. Nina, the 91 year old woman sitting next to me in the photo at our luncheon, shared with me how she and her daughter escaped Northern China during the war and went to live in Russia and eventually in Brazil. She was an OR nurse who has assisted with open heart surgeries and kidney transplants and is still as independent and lively as ever .
Here are some of the photos of some artwork we saw today, a few of my favorites! These are women who have absolutely attained their spirituality and it is evident in the way they care for one another and the way they care for me in their own way unique to their personalities.
Do you know what your purpose is?
Take some time out today and in the next few days to think about what your purpose is on this Earth or what you would like your purpose to be in this lifetime. Find ways to enhance your spirituality and to listen to your inner voice free from outer distractions. Try to be your best person in all situations.
I will leave you with three quotes:
“This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one… the being a force of Nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy.” – George Bernard Shaw
“No individual has any right to come into the world and go out of it without leaving behind him distinct and legitimate reasons for having passed through it.” – George Washington Carver
“When I discover who I am, I will be free.” – Ralph Ellison
And finally, related to food since I LOVE food and always take photos of food that is top-notch and truly impresses me … here is a photo of an amazing strawberry gelato and cantaloupe sorbet I had at our luncheon at Centolire on the Upper East Side (the pineapple sorbet was even better!).