The modern lifestyle is all about doing. From the moment we wake up in the morning to the time we fall asleep at night, we are constantly looking for things to do. Some of these things we do are necessary but most are there only to fill up the time. Somehow, we find it unbearable or unacceptable to not have things to do. At the other end of the spectrum, there are those of us who would try to squeeze as many activities into a single day as we can, assuming that the more we do the more we get out of our lives.

The modern lifestyle does not allow time for reflections and introspection. To do that, we must first be willing to slow down, uncluttered our lives and set our priorities. We need to examine our values and know what we hold to be precious in our lives. We need to look within, know ourselves and become our own best friend.

One of the best place to start our introspection is to ask ourselves "Who am I?".

The Universe and I

The ancients have told us that the universe we live in is made up of Spirit and Matter. They told us that there is something out there that is beyond our five physical perceptions but is nevertheless very real. For example, in the Eastern teaching of Taoism, there is a paragraph that says:

"Something there is without form yet exist, born before Heaven and Earth"

For thousands of years, human beings have lived with this belief in spirituality. It was only in the last 300 years or so that the emergence of science began to question this belief. The classical physics of Newton and Darwin's theory of evolution show that life can exist without a creator, that life can come about through nature's own ways. In addition, the personal God that was taught in religious institutions - one that was vengeful and demanding, and biased towards one group of chosen people over the rest - became more and more unpalatable to the masses.

Spirituality receded into the background of our lives, replaced by materiality. The achievements of science over matter and the glorification of material wealth by the media hasten the demise of spirituality in modern life.

But spirituality is not dead.

It cannot die because it is an inseparable part of our being.

Man is not just the body. It is mind (spirit) and body. In fact, between mind and body, it is the mind that has greater influence over the quality of our lives than the body. Psychologists have learned that the meanings we give to the "realities" in our lives has far greater influence over our happiness than the realities themselves. In other words, it is our perceptions that determine our state of happiness or otherwise.

Furthermore, quantum physics have shown us that at the quantum level of subatomic particles, reality is really not as predictable as what classical physics have led us to believe about the universe and our lives. Physicists are beginning to realize that the universe we live in is more participatory than we thought, and we - each and every one of us - are the participants that determine the outcome of how the universe evolves.

Thus, it now seems that our mind not only determines the quality of our lives. It also determines the reality of the universe. We are co-creators of this universe we live in.

Not just this physical Body

So now we know that we are not simply this physical body. We are spiritual beings (spirituality being spirit and/or mind that we have not fully comprehend yet we know is there and is real). Through our mind we experience both the material and spiritual worlds. Therefore to know ourselves we need to know our mind. We need to look inward, to contemplate, to introspect. And when we do so, we will discover our real self and begin to see our lives from a different perspective - one that is healthier, more blissful and more inclusive.

Living a more spiritual life has its benefits.

Spirituality provides the meanings to life that determines the quality of our human experience. It also provides a mean to explore the mysterious and the best of human experience. In addition, studies have shown that spirituality increases our sense of well being, boosts self confidence, lowers heart attack risks and add more happiness into our lives. Spirituality also offers a graceful surrendering and acceptance that brings peace in time of grief, loss and sufferings, e.g. terminal illness, death of a loved one, separation, divorce and natural disasters.

It is for all these reasons that I urge you to see yourself differently - as a spiritual being, rather than just this physical body.

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Tim Ong is a medical doctor with keen interest in self improvement, mind science and spirituality. He is also the author of "From Fear to Love: A Spiritual Journey" - a book that explores our hidden fears and how we can overcome them. Dr. Ong shares his personal experience as well as relates stories and lessons from his patients. You can get a copy of his ebook here (with a special discount): From Fear to Love.