An Interview with Lynne Bundesen

Is everyone spiritual?
We all have access to Spirit. Spirit is universal and impartial and works with us to become our companion, friend and spacious home. One wonderful thing about Spirit is that it speaks to us and affirms our best, whole identity.

How can one find his or her path to spiritual growth?
The more we learn about Spirit the more spiritual we feel. As Spirit is not material we don't learn much about Spirit through the five physical senses. We learn about spirit through our spiritual senses which we try to develop and have trust in to bring us good and healing if needed. Like produces like. As we view ourselves through the lens of Spirit we see more of our spirituality. And, spirituality means we are never alone.

Cyberspace is a non material place and we are learning and can learn so much about our spirituality from this new realm of thought. Cyberspace allows us to glimpse some of the realities of Spirit - instant communication, just the right information for us at our beck and call, unexpected glimpses of the boundless, non physical nature of infinite geography, companionship.

What benefits can spiritual growth impart to a person?
Spirit is the breath of Life itself. We are surrounded and encompassed by Spirit and there is nothing more glorious to our soul than to see the mist part and catch a glimpse of the glory and comfort of Spirit. While we work at developing our spiritual senses through honesty, trustworthiness, compassion and loving our neighbor we can relax in the sure sense that Spirit claims us as loved and loving.

Ten Spiritual Practices

Spirit is infinite. It is not bound by any age, location, not even by gravity. Spirit lifts up, releases, frees and comforts us collectively and individually. It is often our only refuge and friend. It is a great paradox that the Infinite is found in small steps that can be taken at home, the office and on the road.

Not all of the following are "actions" in the traditional sense; some are subtle shifts of perspective that can ultimately be more powerful than any action we might take:

  1. Resolving to bring Spirit nearer and dearer to us is the first step. Motives lead to action.
     
  2. Don't be afraid of good. Good is natural, and though it may not seem as interesting as the convoluted byways of dramatic horror, good is enriching and normal.
     
  3. Make a spiritual text your own. Pick one that speaks to you: The Psalms of the Bible; The Bhagavad-Gita; a poem by the Persian mystic Rumi, or for those who would like an easier start, perhaps the works of Khalil Gibran. Commit to reading ten minutes each and every day. The effect is both immediate and cumulative, and is unique to you alone.
     
  4. Watch your thoughts. Listen and discern. We hear so much of our own thought that often the Voice of Spirit is distant and muffled. Listen to good ideas, ideas that benefit you and others, and elevate and nurture them. Look for the profitable and hopeful.
     
  5. Give up an opinion. Heavily weighted opinions wear us down. Simply surrender one, let it go. You alone know which of your opinions, your prejudices, is a burden to you and the world. Let that one go. And then, another.
     
  6. Take a day off. Once a week, take a day for not shopping, not watching television, and not participating in business. A Sabbath day is not a useless, outdated, boring concept but a day for refreshment, for walking, writing letters, arranging flowers, reading, cooking a meal that is better than usual, loving yourself and all the life around you. The world will survive without you and you will be the richer for the day.
     
  7. Breathe deeply. Practice breathing. It's free. Dr. Weil has three simple breathing exercises that clear the mind and help to calm stress and create wholeness.
     
  8. Adopt a pet. Yes, they can be a nuisance, but they can also add years to your life, provide solace, and give a focus outside the self. Even fish in a tank bring serenity and comfort. If a pet is not possible, bring plants into your home and take an interest in them, how they grow, what they need to thrive.
     
  9. Walk. The view from the sidewalk, the park trail, the nature path is not the view from behind the wheel of a car. Look up and out and see what is around you with a 30-minute daily walk, no matter the weather. Remember the aphorism: there is no bad weather, only bad clothes.
     
  10. Do something for someone else each day of your life. Count it a poor day when you have not volunteered, gone to a community, or church, or faith meeting, or taken cookies to a neighbor. We find our own spirituality in our connection to others' good. There is always something we can do for another and our motives lead us to action, a spiritual life, and a connection.

Global Warming, Global Spirit

The earth has a fever. Thousands of scientists agree that the fever indicates a crisis in the health of the patient - the planet. 

But global warming is not just a scientific phenomenon. The biggest surprise to me as I sat in the Oslo City Hall on December 10, 2007, was the spiritual resonance apparent to all 400 of us in the audience. The awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to former Vice President Al Gore and the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change was charged with something transcendent, something far beyond a dry recitation of the disastrous facts we all know.

In his acceptance speech, Gore stated plainly that he had prayed daily for years to be put in a position to serve the cause of the earth. Invoking Joshua of the Hebrew Bible, he called on all listening and all around the earth to “choose life that both thou and thy seed may live.” Gore spoke of the spiritual energy that can be unleashed to help heal and cure the patient, earth. He quoted Bishop Desmond Tutu that “to ignore the challenge of global warming is a sin.”

Drawing a fascinating parallel, Gore recounted how Alfred Nobel read his obituary in the newspaper, mistakenly printed years before Nobel's demise, and was struck that he would be remembered for inventing dynamite and not for good works. Seven years later, Nobel funded the prizes that now bear his name and that are awarded for the advancement of science, literature and human rights. Gore said that seven years ago today, he had read his ownpolitical “obituary”: The U.S Supreme Court ruled the Presidency would go not to Gore with his plurality of popular vote, but to George Bush.

Like Nobel, Gore created a new legacy, and we can all be grateful.

The terrible facts we face were also laid out. The polar ice caps may be entirely melted in seven years. Lake Chad was once the sixth largest lake in the world; now it is dry. Desertification, the drying up of entire nations, threatens much of Africa. The scientific consensus is no longer in dispute.

And, today, we all have available access to resources gathered by the United Nations climate committee and Al Gore. We can not only visit the bedside of the our sick Mother Earth, we can participate in unleashing the spiritual energy needed to bring about the healing needed to spare lives, to save lives, to choose life. It is not only the fundamental scientific and engineering challenge facing the world, but our greatest spiritual task as well.