Mind based spirituality has the goal of expanding one’s mental possibilities- be it calmness, a clear mind, intelligence, or golf. 🙂
The movie Very Bad Things (starring Cameron Diaz, Christian Slater and one of my all-time favorite actors, Jon Favreau) is an extreme portrayal of what happens when we reach a heightened state of mental acuity without the involvement of the heart.
In the movie, Christian Slater’s character starts out seeming like a highly stable person. He is in the moment, happy, and after there is an accidental murder, he adopts an attitude of “let’s just be logical about this and not overreact.”
But soon we find him murdering someone on purpose so they don’t tell anyone about the first accidental murder!
By the end of the movie, he’s a plain old psycho, killing whoever might expose the deepening madness.
Where is the spirituality in that?
There isn’t any.
True spiritual life involves more than the mind. It is an awareness of the deeper heart, the “soul”, or most ultimately: consciousness itself. It is based on love, responsibility, devotion, and sacrifice.
One must be willing to transcend the ego- to grow beyond ourselves, being willing to love, willing to be in relationship, willing to feel- willing to “sacrifice” the “self” and love instead.
Without love- true, human, heart based love- what is there, really?
I don’t care how deeply you can meditate, or how much money you can make, or how calm you can stay in dire circumstances. Love, responsibility, and staying in relationship are the real signs of true, ego-transcending spirituality.