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As we mature into our next decade as a community, I find myself asking, Why is spiritual community important and relevant today? What do we offer at a physical location that you can’t find in a book or online? Perhaps brick-and-mortar community is a dying paradigm? … all popular and timely inquiries.

I am then reminded of my years in sales. I remember the increasing enthusiasm and certainty that web casts, emails and telecommuting would be the “solution” to all of our inconveniences and inefficiencies. “Convenience and efficiency, that’s what we need!” (in a Superman-like voice).

Our first quarterly Love In Action

Our first quarterly Love In Action

I don’t buy it. Look, I am all for the benefits of technology and accessibility. I live by Google calendar. I am obsessed with Instagram. I have bookcases upon bookcases of inspiring material. I have attended thousands of hours of workshops and classes to support my personal and spiritual growth. And yet nothing has transformed me more than the rub of human relationship.

And yet nothing has transformed me more than the rub of human relationship.

I don’t mean the polite, controlled, barely committed kind of human relationship. I don’t mean the barista bar conversations, the PTO squabbles, the obligatory family gatherings. I mean the roll your sleeves up, give yourself wholly to something greater than yourself, mission-oriented kind of service that goes on in a community. Technology and periodic spiritual practice can never replace that.

Nothing has expanded me more than giving of myself in ways I never knew I had the capacity for. Our spiritual needs cannot be met informationally—they must be met experientially.

Our spiritual needs cannot be met informationally—they must be met experientially.

It occurred to me after having my first child that spiritual community was important. I wanted something more than the ritual of ice cream on a Sunday. I yearned for the consistent support of like-minded adults at various stages of life as I embarked on the journey of parenting. I trusted that a community of people could provide my children with love, care and perspective in ways and at times that I couldn’t. That web of relationships has been a lifesaver for me individually, as a married person and as a parent.

Building the beLOVEd Community is a spiritual practice. It stretches us beyond our comfort zones. It requires a faith and commitment we never knew was possible. I know who we become in the process is worth every moment of it.

Lola Wright

About Lola Wright

Lola Wright is the Spiritual Director at Bodhi Spiritual Center.

4 Comments

  • Avatar Anne says:

    So well put….I too have read, studied and attended workshops…I continue to seek out others committed to spiritual growth to stretch me and Bodhii provides a wonderful group…thanks.

  • Avatar Marsha Craig says:

    I couldn’t agree more! I was 12 when I found the LDS (Mormon) Church. It was my first experience of community beyond family and I was hooked. When the beliefs and tenants of the Mormon Faith no longer matched my growing understanding and relationship to God, I moved on from it and found another community that better served me. Then I out grew that one and found Bodhi. I can’t imagine life with out community – especially spiritual community. The growth I’ve experienced would not have been possible with out it. Life IS relationships. It’s in the engaging with relationships within my life and Bodhi that I get to know all the false beliefs I live inside of and the Truth of Oneness and God that permeates all of it. I love the safe, loving places that I get to practice HIGH principals and truth. Bodhi gives me that loving place to practice, where people are engaged and willing to see things beyond the human experience and get to the center of it – where God lives! I’m so grateful for community and especially Bodhi!!! Thank you, Lola for your wisdom, vision and insight. YOU are one of the ones I learn and grow SO much with. I love you, my sweet soul sister. And Bodhi – you are my family! xo

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