As an HSP, do you struggle to find a connection to your spiritual intuition? Many of us do. Yet it is our most important resource.
Cleaning up after dinner, I rescued this miniature “chard tree” just before it disappeared down the drain. I love its color and shape. For me, the vivid red and green is a happy reminder of the Christmas season.
Whatever your spiritual background, though, if you are highly sensitive, the arrow-like shape of the chard leaf is significant. It points to the essential importance of a fresh, alive, ever-growing relationship with your spiritual intuition.
We each have different names for spiritual intuition: higher wisdom, inner knowing, spiritual source. The term is less important than the thing to which it refers. It’s worth searching to find the words that click for you, though, so you can talk about this most important HSP resource.
In fact, our spiritual intuition is so important to us as highly sensitive people that without it, we feel like we are flying blind. We may mistake the resulting distress for externally stimulated anxiety, when the true source of our anxiety arises from our lack of access to our inner knowing.
Blocks to connecting
Even knowing all this, though, you may still resist connecting to your spiritual intuition. I did, for years. Why? I pictured God/the Universe/Spirit as an entity, existing somewhere “out there.” I assumed s/he/it/they were way too busy to care about my puny problems. It never even crossed my mind to ask her/him/them/it for insight, comfort, or help.
Here are three more reasons you may fear or resist connection to your spiritual intuition:
1—Your beliefs about your spiritual source are based on negative childhood experiences. Perhaps your early caregivers or religious authorities were critical, authoritarian, permissive, distant, inconsistent, or even abusive. If you think connecting to your spiritual source will leave you feeling as inadequate, scared, or ashamed as you did back then, no wonder you’d avoid it.
2—It feels too scary to “know what you know.” If you suffered some kind of trauma as a child—including subtle trauma—you may have made an unconscious choice to shut down or ignore your spiritual intuition. In this case, you likely have inner parts that sincerely believe they must prevent you from hearing your inner truth, or you will die or go crazy.
3—You find it scary to surrender to a state of beingness. Present-moment beingness is a prerequisite for connecting to your spiritual intuition. However, you can’t surrender unless you let go of being vigilant… and many HSPs have inner parts that believe their vigilance is the only thing keeping you safe.
How do you overcome these obstacles?
If you’ve had the experience of deep oneness, it will motivate you to find a way to overcome these obstacles. I haven’t yet met an HSP who hadn’t felt that transcendence, even if only briefly.
I first experienced this during a week-long Zen retreat. Layers of fear fell away. For a brief time, I could not tell if I was breathing the air, or the air was “breathing” me. My body felt like nothing more than a thin gate between the “inner” and “outer” worlds. My normally crowded, noisy brain went silent.
Inner Bonding® helped me understand this experience, clarifying that in my essence, I am a chunk of the universal energy we call names like Mind, God, or Spirit. On the earthly level I look like a separate conglomeration of matter. On the spiritual level, I’m not separate.
However, it takes patient practice to realize this truth in your day-to-day life. Along the way, Inner Bonding and Focusing provide powerfully synergistic practices to help you nurture your sensitive spiritual intuition and connect to your spiritual essence:
Inner Bonding creates a framework of awareness, reminding me that I alone am responsible for choosing my intent moment by moment. Will I attempt to control things so I can experience pleasure and avoid pain? Or will I choose to learn by asking for spiritual guidance, acting on it, and assessing the effects of my actions? Inner Bonding makes the choice crystal clear.
Focusing brings the six steps of Inner Bonding to the most intimate inner level, providing nuanced self-connection skills that nurture your ability to be a Loving Adult to yourself. In this state of Loving Adult Presence, you can dialogue compassionately with your inner selves, and effectively access your higher guidance.
3 observations about the connection process
As I’ve practiced Inner Bonding and Focusing to deepen my spiritual connection, here’s what I’ve noticed:
- When I act from my spiritual intuition, I feel an unmistakable quality of rightness.
- My spiritual connection is accessible only in the present moment: right here, right now.
- I can best access that present-moment connection through meditation, when I meditate with the express intention of connecting to my spiritual intuition. Different practices work for different people—as long as the practice takes you into inner silence.
All these practices—Inner Bonding, Focusing, and meditation— synergize to fuel a “virtuous spiral,” increasing our motivation for spiritual practice. This hunger for spiritual connection is our biggest ally on the path of spiritual growth. Even if that hunger has been buried, ignored, or feared, it never dies. And it won’t stop trying to get through.
Give yourself the gift of spiritual intuition
In this season of giving, I wish I could transmit the experience of spiritual connection directly to you. But I can’t. This is the essence of the spiritual path: you have free will, and only you can choose how to use it. I hope you will use it to strengthen your connection to your spiritual intuition.
If you do, your efforts will be lavishly repaid. When you live guided by this deep inner knowing, you’ll experience a deep peace and joy that goes beyond any worldly experience, while helping you navigate your worldly experiences with grace and skill.
Note: An earlier version of this article appeared on December 19, 2017.
Image ©2017, Emily Agnew
I appreciate your article. I did not know I was HSP until I was 50. I am now 57. I had a rich inner spiritual life for 38 years. I experienced a traumatic event and that spiritual connection is gone. I actually feel better, I feel more like myself, but I am at a loss as to how to live without a spiritual connection. I have been walking out in nature as much as I can. Are there any other options , any other terms , that can help an HSP in this area of their life without calling it spiritual?
If your spiritual connection disappeared after a traumatic event, it sounds like finding a way to address the trauma would be necessary to reconnect. It doesn’t matter what you call it, as long as you are connecting with that sense of something bigger than you: that is what creates a bigger sense of safety and meaning.
What a fabulous article. I have experienced childhood trauma, but did therapy and healing work to become restored. It’s been a very long journey and has caused me to grow in ways I can’t explain.
Thank you Lauren, I’m glad you enjoyed the article. Thank you for sharing that you have been able to address and heal trauma from childhood. That’s inspiring for me to read and for others to hear, too. I agree, it is hard to express all the ways one grows from such a process.