Embracing Community Grows You
Embracing community is vitally important for spiritual growth. If you want to really live well, it is important to participate in a community.
If you don’t belong to a group, you can hide out and pretend to have things integrated that aren’t because nobody’s there to challenge you. Your peers know when you’re pretending and when you’re putting on airs.
The ego is afraid it’s going to be suffocated, drowned, controlled, or otherwise lost in a group. But avoiding community makes you feel isolated. In order to transcend that fear, you need to be part of a group.
Facing the Pressure of Community
You may have left your hometown or your country because of your unconventional views. But why are these views a problem? Because of the pressure to conform. So, what are you avoiding? Pressure! You cannot be a warrior on the spiritual path as long as you avoid it.
By avoiding embracing community you can pretend the pressure doesn’t exist, but that won’t free you. You must join in, be yourself, take the hits, and keep going. If you don’t call each other on your blind spots, your spiritual growth will stagnate, no matter how much meditation you do.
Stop Running, Meet Each Other with Heart
You must show up for each other honestly and with real heart. There was a point in your life when you needed to run. But you’ve done that already. You can’t keep running. It’s time to stop, turn around and meet whatever you’re afraid of.
You can do it gently most of the time. But you have to meet it.
This article is adapted from an excerpt from the book Dharma if You Dare by Doug Duncan Sensei. You can purchase digital and paperback copies of the book on Amazon.
Doug Duncan & Catherine Pawasarat are modern day teachers of transcendence. Their work with students draws upon Buddhist, Western Mysteries, modern psychology and other traditions.
If you found this article helpful, consider sharing your gratitude by making a gift of Dana to the Teachers. With dana practice, an ancient form of the gift economy, the giver benefits most.
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