How much is enough? ;)

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-09-2001
How much is enough? ;)
Mon, 09-26-2011 - 5:18pm

from the Tao Te Ching:

"The greatest misfortune
is desire,
The greatest burden
is greed.
The greatest curse
is discontentment.

Only those who know
when enough is enough
will ever have enough."

I saw this quote in one of my Zen books, zen 24/7, all zen/all the time Philip Toshio Sudo. It got me thinking about spiritual matters. How much religious/spiritual practice/ritual/prayer is *enough?* ;) Do you need it daily? A few days/week? One day/week? Randomly as you "feel the need?" Different religions/spiritual traditions may also have "requirements" that guide you or guilt trip you. :P

So, how much is enough for you? ;)




iVillage Member
Registered: 01-02-2009
Mon, 09-26-2011 - 8:47pm

I don't really know how much I need although I do know that I need more than I've been getting lately.

Signature - Kim, mom to Oli and Keelan

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Tue, 09-27-2011 - 9:13am

What a great discussion topic! Especially since my spiritual needs are so low and so its been hard for me to come up with things to post about here.

I use to 'try' and be more spiritual and take my Path to the levels I see other people doing, Or I would worry that because I didnt believe in ritual or the need to go to a church or 'worship' a God or Goddess, that there was something wrong with me.

But not any more. What I have is enough for me. It brings me Peace and I work internally to connect with the Tao, no external trappings are needed. I do work on my Path, to balance my Life and make this peace a constant presence in my life, but I dont feel the need to make it a big deal.

And of course this fits right in with this quote, since the Tao Te Ching is my bible of sorts. The teachings of Lao Tzu resonant with me in a way nothing else ever has.

Remember too that this passage does not just refer to the spiritual needs in your life, but all your needs. The less you need the more you have.



iVillage Member
Registered: 03-09-2001
Wed, 09-28-2011 - 1:36pm

"Remember too that this passage does not just refer to the spiritual needs in your life, but all your needs. The less you need the more you have."

Oh, I agree! :P Our spiritual path is what it is. ;) What we put into it, we'll get out of it. Sometimes a lot of strength and discipline to deal with life on its own terms. Sometimes not. But our culture here in the U.S. is about wanting more, more, more. Always wanting the grand scale. Always being dissatisfied. Always judging. Always criticizing. Ourselves as well as others. My Zen meditation group for the disabled and/or chronically ill is teaching me a lot about what's "enough." ;)




iVillage Member
Registered: 09-20-2007
Wed, 09-28-2011 - 5:38pm

I've struggled with this for many years now. My first husband was an atheist, which I didn't originally have a problem with, since I grew up with atheists and agnostics in my family. However, he was one of those atheists who felt that ANY religious views of anyone was wrong and shouldn't be allowed, so he was against all religions/spiritual paths. He knew that I was a Pagan when we met and then he didn't seem to have a problem with it. However, the marriage turned abusive (verbally, emotionally and physically) and he continually browbeated me so much about my own spiritual path that in order to keep the peace I packed up my tools, books and altar and didn't openly practice my path for years. I thought that I'd given up on my God/desses. However, when I ended up attempting suicide, They showed me that They hadn't given up on me. But even after I got divorced and into my own place and was safe from the abuse, I still didn't practice my spirituality.

As it is right now I don't have an altar in my house. DH is fine with my religion (he's agnostic), but I still have issues with performing rituals. I tell myself that I don't have an altar because of my cats and part of that is true, because they've realized that the stove and the kitchen table are the only places they aren't allowed to be. And one of my cats is a very athletic jumper and can even jump on top of the bookcase. So any altar I'd have would soon have all the stuff knocked down onto the floor because of her. And I'm leery of burning candles around my cats as well. People looking at me would never know that I was a Pagan. I don't wear a pentacle, since it's not a Druidic symbol. I'm a beader, so I'm working on some nature-themed jewelry that I can wear as a symbol of my path. People who see it will just think that I'm a tree-hugger. Yes, I still have one foot in the broom closet, and that might make me a coward, but living in the Bible Belt can do a number on your self-esteem at times when it comes to the fact that you're a non-Christian and I would rather not have the confrontations with strangers who think it's their business to jump down my throat because I'm not a Christian.

So where does this leave me now? I try my best to walk my path without the "trappings." As a Druid, I'm connected to the Earth Mother and Her children, so I'm trying to live more green. I spend my leisure time reading about Celtic prehistory, Druids and archaeology. Helping animals is my life's mission, so I love my job as a veterinary assistant in an emergency clinic. It's important to me to help the patients who need it to travel to the Otherworld. And, of course, I pray to my God/desses as part of my daily practice.