If Spiritual Direction is new to you, you may have many questions. Here’s some answers to a few of them. Please contact me with any further questions to help decide if Spiritual Direction may be beneficial for you at the moment.
What happens in a session?
The conversation may begin with an overview of what’s going on in your life – the joys, sorrows and challenges. Through talking and listening together the broad sweep may begin to focus on a deeper level. The content of this focus may be a surprising and helpful revelation. Or the session may begin with a particular aspect of your life that you want to talk about. It’s your time so it’s up to you. The Spiritual Director listens to you relate your experience, and by attentiveness and gentle questioning assists you to notice the subtle dynamics in your life: the ways God is inviting you to grow, and how you are responding.
Is it like counselling?
It is like counselling but the main difference is the overall context in which the conversation is held and heard. In Spiritual Direction there is a conscious awareness that God is actively engaged in the process and in your life, drawing you into a deeper relationship and inviting your response. Spiritual Direction enables greater freedom to respond to the fullness of life to which God is calling you, that is, to more fully become the unique person you are created to be: your true self. With an appropriate counsellor, counselling can certainly increase self-awareness and so also facilitate growth in freedom to respond to God.
What if I don’t believe in God?
Spiritual Direction is within the framework of what you do believe in and the values you do hold. Spiritual Direction requires belief in something greater than yourself that draws you beyond yourself to others and to the wider world. It requires a relational openness to more than the self. This more has many names, or no name, and need not be named ‘God’.
Is Spiritual Direction beneficial for everyone?
No. For Spiritual Direction conversations to be beneficial, a person needs to be capable of self-reflection i.e. to be aware, at least to some extent, of what’s going on interiorly and be willing to attend to this. [This capacity can be further developed through Spiritual Direction.] Self-reflection and continual growth in self-awareness are the means by which Spiritual Direction bears fruit.