Balance is something we take for granted until we become unbalanced. We see it in the physical world especially as people age. Some of my favorite yoga exercises involve balance, but now that I’m older I find it more difficult to stay in a balanced position.
Mental balance is also importance, and once again, we take it for granted until we become mentally unbalanced. This phrase, mentally unbalanced, prompts images of psychopaths who go on a killing spree or commit some other heinous crime, but mental imbalance can come in much milder forms. These milder forms are not necessarily evil or even bad, but simply a mental state in which our focus has shifted too far in one direction. Obsessive compulsive disorders can occur when someone focuses too much attention on one particular thing—or even one particular person.
Spiritual imbalance can also occur in our lives. This can happen when we place too much of our focus on certain rules and doctrines, or when we become enamored by one particular form of religion, or one particular religious leader, to the exclusion of all others.
Finding a balance in religion does not mean that we have to partake of each religion in equal measure. Consider the ingredients used to make a food dish. We seldom use equal proportions of salt, flour, milk, and sugar, or any other ingredient. Most dishes have a main ingredient and the others add flavor, or in some cases, reduce an overpowering flavor. Each ingredient has a function, and we use them all in different degrees to balance one another.
Most people have a main religion they were born into or chose on their own. Fine. That’s just the way things are. But, danger can arise if we exclude all the other religious flavors available to us. We don’t have to balance religion by attempting to have an equal portion of each available one. That’s silly and impossible. But, we can balance the words of the Buddha with the words of Jesus and find a new understanding and a new religious dish that is to our liking. We can balance the words of Muhammad and the words of Krishna.
Every ingredient in a food dish has meaning and value—something to add to the overall success of the final dish. Every religion also has meaning and value—something to add to the overall success of the final spiritual dish that sustains us for the journey home.
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Our purpose is to help individuals to heal who have been injured by religion or the religious. We welcome your comments and questions.