Metaphysical Terms 101: Basics, Misconstrued and Misused 

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Misunderstandings regarding metaphysics and spirituality abound. Our empirical research since the 1980s has allowed us to realize, what we believe to be, the authentic meanings of the following spiritual terms.

Be cautious of “updated” definitions and alternative versions of these important terms, as in many cases they have been construed to fit the author’s agenda and profit goals. Redefining spiritual truths is like re-writing history–it’s misleading and disrespectful to your audience and the ancient sages and philosophers who worked tirelessly to enlighten the world.

Mystic: This word can conjure up images of crazy old men with long, white beards or worse, thanks to Hollywood.

The American Heritage dictionary defines mysticism as consciousness of transcendent reality or of God through deep meditation or contemplation. Mystic is defined as of or relating to religious mysteries or occult rites and practices; one who practices or believes in mysticism.

We add to the term mystic the following: a spiritually sensitive individual and, or one who is actively involved in personal growth and self-realization, and who searches deeply into the meaning of life. Therefore, we believe many of you reading this article are mystics.

Metaphysics: This word sounds complicated, but it’s actually quite simple. Meta means beyond, so metaphysical translates into beyond the physical. It’s the field of philosophy concerned with the study of the nature of existence, beings, space, time, and causality.

Higher-self: Your super-consciousness or sixth sense. You could also refer to it as your “God-self.” This is that mysterious side of yourself that you access under meditation and, or, for example, when you have piercing psychic insight about the future.

Destiny: The bulk of the conditions and key circumstances in your life which are planned out by your soul before incarnating. This, however, doesn’t mean you can’t influence (see the next definition) and make the most of your life.

This is one of the most misused and misunderstood spiritual words, especially among those we call “New Age cheerleaders” (inspirational-focused authors). They claim to be able to show you how to “create” or “change” your destiny. Wouldn’t that be nice? Whatever you want, it’s yours! Well, we believe the reputable ancient mystics were right: Destiny is fixed and already in motion when you are born. Just like you can’t sober up right after downing several drinks, you can’t skip the karma you have carried into this life.

Free Will: How you react to your destiny or the events that “happen to you” is your free will. You have free will to “create” and “manifest” what you’d like, as long as that goal is within the confines of your destined path.

Unfortunately, no matter how much you want something and no matter how clear your intent and how devoted you are to getting it, if it’s not part of your destiny, it’s not going to happen. The cheerleaders (and poets) fail to mention this, as their followers realizing the cold, hard spiritual realities of life would mean less seminar revenue and fewer book sales.

Are your main choices destined? We believe so. As we outline a person’s past and future circumstances through our work, it does appear to us that even the key “choices” they make are predestined. We’ve also found that your richest rewards are also predetermined, so have faith that you will realize what you’ve earned. More information can be found in our free download, Direct Your Destiny.

Taking note of these theories and incorporating the philosophies into your spiritual awareness, after testing them yourself, will save you an enormous amount of time and heartache. At the same time, be sure to objectively weigh other points of view.

Copyright © 2010 Scott Petullo, Stephen Petullo

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