The concept of spiritual energy is as ancient as humanity, with nearly every culture having beliefs and practices related to tapping into a spiritual source for energy and well-being. Spirit refers to the essence of life, the active consciousness that flows throughout all things in the Universe.
The Taoists have referred to this prime essence as the Tao, and its expression as the energy of life as qi or chi. Yogis have understood that the energy of life they refer to as prana comes from a spiritual source. Christians engaged in spiritual healing speak of the “holy spirit” and may see the Christ as the conduit or Source of healing power. In Western occult traditions there is the idea of the 5th element or quintessence, the spiritual source from which all the perceived elements of the Universe have arisen. Hollywood producer George Lucas brought these ideas into his epic STAR WARS saga as an exploration of the workings of “The Force.”
Everything in creation is a form or expression of energy … including our thoughts and feelings. Energy is guided by consciousness, so when we have different thoughts and emotions they generate waves of energy that actually influence what is occurring on the physical plane of reality.
The famous placebo effect is a great example of how thoughts guide manifestation in the realm of matter. Our beliefs affect what actually occurs in our body. When we are happy and relaxed, energy flows freely and our body is likely to remain healthy. However, when we have chronic stress and unpleasant thoughts and feelings, our energy flow becomes disturbed and disrupted, and we may develop illness. Just as an electrical appliance can’t function well if there is too weak or too strong a current of electricity, our body will have problems operating when there is an imbalance in the subtle energy flow that sustains life.
Shamans, yogis, priests, and spiritual energy masters from other traditions have employed practices that help restore healthy life force. Modern science is catching up with this ancient wisdom, exploring the electromagnetic fields around the body that reflect the state of the subtle life force energy. Acupuncture meridians, chakras, and auric fields can be perceived now using electromagnetic biofeedback instruments. Those with expanded intuitive vision may perceive the luminous “light” body of energy or halo around a living being.
Stress relief methods can help rebalance that subtle energy flow and allow the spiritual essence to flow through us in a more harmonious way. Meditation practices help slow down the conscious, thinking mind, which is where much of our stress comes from. We worry about the future, we mentally replay the past, and thus our energy is dispersed and not fully present in the “now.” Meditation is often used with the intention of enhancing one’s openness and connection to a spiritual source.
The Indian tradition of yoga is also designed to help humans unite more with their spiritual essence, providing a comprehensive system of discipline using the body, mind, and spirit. The physical disciplines used in yoga are really the beginning levels of this path toward spiritual union. Those who discover the health benefits of yoga may not even realize that the ultimate goal of yoga is related more to spiritual integration and unification than to physical fitness.
How we express our energy in life affects the balance of energy in our system. People who are very intellectual may have a lot of energetic activity around their head area but have a limited flow at the heart or lower levels of the system. Those who are very compassionate and emotionally driven may have an active heart energy center but lack clear discernment or ability to gain higher wisdom. Those who are preoccupied with power, money, sex, physical appearance, and social status may have their energy focused in the lower energy centers but lack empathy and neglect to seek greater meaning and purpose in life.
A more balanced, integrated person would awaken the energy flow in all levels of their being, addressing the needs of everyday life while also addressing humanistic and spiritual concerns. We each can reflect upon our own lives and see where we focus our energy and how we might need to shift our habits and attention to foster more balance.
Copyright © Jed Shlackman. All Rights Reserved.
Jed Shlackman, M.S. Ed., LMHC is a professional counselor, hypnotherapist and regression therapist, Reiki master and energy healer, and a sound healing musician and writer who is based in Miami, Florida. Jed has degrees in counseling and psychology from the University of Miami and has worked as a counselor and healer with thousands of clients over the past couple of decades. Jed’s website is www.phinsights.com, his facebook links are www.facebook.com/jedishamanreiki and www.facebook.com/jediholistichealing, and his meditation and music recordings are at jedishaman.bandcamp.com. Jed’s book, CONSCIOUSNESS, CREATION & EXISTENCE: A GUIDE TO THE GRAND ADVENTURE, is available from Amazon.com and other booksellers.