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Q05

Have you had any particularly religious or spiritual experiences this past year?

I find being a mother to be a deeply spiritual experience. Everday. (Almost.) Over the summer, I consulted with a (Jewish!) spiritual medium and doing so was akin to having a 45 minute conversation with my late mother. During the convo, my mom absolved me of so much of the pain, sadness, worry and guilt I have felt since her death. She told me that I can't spend my life worrying that I too am going to die young of cancer. She blessed the project I am now working on -- a book about her -- so long as it is healing for me and doesn't cause me to meander in the painful memories. And she told me that I don't need to pay a medium to access her -- that she is with me all the time. (Since she told me that through the medium, it conferred upon the medium a lot of credibility. She's not just looking to book her next appointment!)

I have had my home blessed.

In roughly the last year, I discovered meditation. I don't do it enough (if, at all), but I recognize when it happens, whether when I'm taking a moment to myself, or exercising on the spin bike. I'm not sure it's what I'd call religious or spiritual, but I do realize I would like to have more of them.

No, not really. I don't really go in for much religious/spiritual things. I have realised though that being yourself and not being afraid of that and what other people think is the way forward.

I began wearing my gramma's jewelry and feel a desire to visit her grave. I am hoping to make this possible in the near future and connect with her again.

YES, in July 2008, Roger and I went to Lake Louise and I specifically dwelled on how to resolve things with Norman. Although I did not come out of that trip right away weith the answer, I had a most awesome experience feeling HaShem in the stillness and the gradiose of the mountains which calmed me and infused me with a love and depth I hadn't ever felt. It was a beautiful feeling.

I want to be more religious or spiritual but I feel alone. My parents don't support it and I think the only way I will keep Judaism around in my life is if I find someone Jewish to date/marry. I say that this isn't important to me but it really is. The only problem is that sometimes I don't feel Jewish enough for people.

i am almost 8 months pregnant, and feeling a living being kicking inside me is so miraculous...and makes me feel more spiritually connected than I believe anything ever has. i feel like daily i have spiritual experiences...seeing the sliver of moon tonite, the sunset in sante fe last night, the beauty and smell of a rose openning, the taste of a freshly roasted chili pepper, all point to the magic of this universe. for me when i open my heart to the everyday miracles - the awesomeness of our world, it is so easy to believe in a higher power...it is not necessarily religious for me, but definitely spiritual.

Religious experience: reading "the God Delusion" by Richard Dawkins had a profound effect on my thinking. I totally concur with his arguments and his writing opened up so much more scope. He is a genuine champion of rational thinking and man's ability to use his brain for himself and not be deluded by others. The insidiousness of teaching religion to children was a chilling revelation. We should all read this book and reflect within ourselves! Spiritual experience: A holiday in Byron Bay and environs was sublime.

Yes, riding along the ocean on my bike, i have again and again heard the tune from aleinu, where we bow down in shul and prostrate ourselves on the floor. i never knew why, six or seven months after the high holidays, it came back to me again and again at various points, particularly when i was cycling by the ocean. and then one day, i went to a lecture on the high holidays by my beloved rabbi and she spoke of that section, that verse, and explained that it's all about letting go, about acknowledging that we don't have control, that there is something bigger than us that we lie down beneath and say, i know that i don't know everything and i release the attempts to try and control all. It felt so powerful to me - me who tries to control the universe and direct every scene from every angle. and yet there i am cycling along the ocean with this vast vast sea besides me and who can help but say, even subconsciously, i give in. i am a small blip in this vastness. And it's a great feeling.

Yes, saying Kaddish for my father. The year was both short and long. I was lonely in missing him; I was together in mourning with my family. I could feel his presence in my life, and in my prayers; And there was a hole in the universe that he once filled. I viscerally felt the impermanence of life, Yet also experienced the touch of the eternal.

Not really. I've moved away from Christianity that I was moving toward last year and returned more to the searching of the metaphysical. I want a significant spiritual experience, but I don't think I've ever had one.

In the days before Rosh Hashanah, I went with my family to the cemetery where my father, Jakob Mogilnik, z"l, is buried. I'm not sure if it's a religious or spiritual experience. It is always an awful one. I prefer to go with my children and my husband; I think I'm afraid to go alone. Taking my father's spirit of decency and commitment to justice with me, I went to Pennsylvania to knock on doors and make phone calls for Barack Obama, just before Rosh Hashanah. I very much considered that "praying with my feet.

I stood by the ocean and it opened me again. very refreshing. I re-connected to what was important to me. I love the big sky, its openness and never ending light. That was how it felt to me that wonderful low tide in December. It was relief. Lots of fresh air, wind blowing, moving, not talking too much. just a peace. Also I learned to meditate last year. I had a very very hard day on the all day retreat. My feelings that day still scare me and overwhelm me. I love the feeling of getting to the inside of me. I'm still hesitant to move my body in ways that my hurt me. Some of that was my fear on that day. (also this year I have two new instructors that I really trust with my body and enjoy moving with) Is this spiritual? in ways for me it is. I connect to myself, relax, give myself time and recognize where I am. It is not about the accepting, it is stating what is right now. That is comforting to me. so the connection between the natural world and my mind coming to a peaceful place is spiritual to me. religion, eh? not for me so much this year.

Listening to Deepak Chopra talk about synchronicity on Big Ideas. Starting to read Carl Sagan's "The Varieties of Scientific Experience.

Not really. If anything, I'd say I've become less spiritual and more jaded. Probably because of the ease with which I've been able to bend my previous moral sensibilities.

i have dreams about my mother where it really feels like she is visiting me. in all of the dreams we either talk about how crazy it is that she died or we are very aware that she can only visit for a short period of time. in all of the dreams she has died though and is so clearly visiting me. we often connect very strongly and when i wake i feel like i have really spent time with her.

I've walked in nature, I swam in the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, I've seen the beauty of a Nebraska lighting storm streaking horizontally across the plains. I feel grateful for the gifts of life, nature, beauty, and kindness every single day. I am not always happy, but I always know that I am lucky. I am blessed.

When the biggest snowstorm this city has ever known hit, I took a long walk through the fields behind my house and felt more at peace than I had in years. Everything was so white and beautiful and silent. No cars, birds, or people. I walked by myself for at least an hour just listening to the earth. It was a spiritual experience for me, because sometimes the beauty of nature suggests a higher power at work.

I feel a real connection to the world around me and feel moved by simple things - sunlight sparkling from dewdrops on the tips of grass, the cooing of doves in the morning, the sound of wind whipping tree tops during a late night storm, the laughter of children, the smiles of lovers. I feel such a deep "connectedness" at times - a feeling that there is a web that connects it all and that I am a part of it. It is a peaceful, serene feeling - a spiritual feeling

Yeah, a funeral. I'd never been this involved in death, and it gave me a new outlook on what happens next..

Studying the biological sciences, it's becoming clearer and clearer that there cannot be a higher being, and spiritual experiences are simply the work of our imaginations. But I am not a complete non-believer yet.

No, i don't believe in god or any of that, but i do have fear of when people talk about december 21st 2012 being the end of the world, that means i wont even get to see my birthday that year. Religiously connected or not apocalyptical point of view is frightening.

i took an intuition workshop where we talked to our souls. my soul told me "you are going to die". then... "all is/will be well".

No... except for the confirming that attitude is everyting... that negative views or thoughts will result in failure and positive thoughts and views won't guarranty success but will provide hope and happiness... my view that I am too dumb to know I should be unhappy is actually that I have learned that happiness is a choice you can choose despite any circumstances!

I've recently begun to contemplate that when I look up at the stars, I'm looking into the universe as it was sometimes thousands, if not millions of years ago, and that I'm seeing far into the past before I was born. I never really considered it in that way until recently, and somehow I draw comfort from it.

I realized that my life is as good as it is because I've dedicated myself to being of service. I also discovered I can stand my own company. I was in a movie theatre [by myself] watching previews, ipod on, listening to "Time of our Times" by Badly Drawn Boy and I had a moment... a moment of happiness, surrender and acceptance. I realized that NOONE could've have told me this is where I'd be and this is how I'd feel... G-d has a life in store for me. My job, it seems, is to show up, be of service, love and have fun. The rest of it is G-d's business.

I don't really know what to say about this. I have put this question off till the last day. It is the last hour actually that i can even answer it. I have been thinking about this damn question for days. I am writing in short and sweet sentences because i feel even now i am stalling. Basically i can sum it up as this: I am not a religious person, and it is really hard for me to think of a spiritual situation. But Maddie just explained to me that a *spiritual experience* could be a moment where you seem to have an out of body experience. I finally knew what i had to write about. It was during our trip to Montana. It was our first night there, in Cody. I was on the phone with Maddie and i told her "you really should see this, it feels like someone is opening up the sky just for me to see the stars" I looked all around and there was sooo many clouds that were hiding the wonders of the sky from everyone. But there was a HOLE in the sky right above me. I wish i could write down what this meant to me, but it is just not coming out right. But basically i think she thought i was kidding about how amazing this was to me at the time. and of course like my normal self i joked about it, thus giving her full reason not to understand what i meant about how wonderful i felt. I literally felt like for the 15 hours i had driven all the way up to the NORTH, and for whatever reason there was something out there or some reason that made me feel special. Made me feel like i was the only person out there who got to see this beautiful sky. I wish i could have shared this with her, but hopefully i will be able to have an experience like this but completely new in itself. I guess the post that i thought i had the least to say, is the longest. I am glad i saved this for last.

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