What Is Spiritual Intelligence?
Spiritual intelligence is the expression of innate spiritual
qualities through your thoughts, actions and attitude, says Brahmakumari
What does spiritual intelligence mean?
In order to understand spiritual intelligence it is useful to
first be clear on what we mean when we use these two words.
Being Spiritual: To be 'spiritual' is to think, act and
interact from an awareness of self as spirit not form, soul not
body. Most of us are taught to believe we are our physical forms,
and so we identify with our body or the labels we give to our
bodies such as nationality, race, gender, profession etc. This
wrong sense of self is what creates all fear, anger and sadness
in life. From a spiritual point of view these emotions are always
the result of ego (misidentification), which then blocks access
to your true spiritual nature which is peaceful, loving and joyful.
Having intelligence: Intelligence is to use what you know
in the right way at the right time in the right place with the
right intention. For example if you 'know' your self as a spiritual
being you will also 'know' that you do not own or possess anything.
When something in your life is damaged or lost, it does not affect
you in any way you are able to use your spiritual power
to accept and move on. If someone praises the clothes you wear,
or insults you in any way or comments negatively about your looks,
you are NOT affected because you know that your real
beauty lies within your character, within your nature, which no
one can ever take away. In that moment you draw on the inner power
of that knowledge and use it to remain stable in the face of others
negativity. In effect you are drawing on your spiritual strength
which is only released when you know who and what you are, and
then using that strength in the right way, in the right place
at the right time.
What is the difference between spiritual intelligence and
Spirituality is to know who you are and Spiritual
Intelligence is to realise who you are and to live
life in that awareness. You have always been who you are and,
in truth, you can never be other than who you are, but it requires
realisation i.e. that moment when you see it,
when you get it and then you be it.
Spirituality is the knowledge of yourself as spirit/soul, and
the understanding of your highest spiritual qualities and attributes,
which are love, peace, purity and bliss. Spiritual Intelligence
is the expression of these innate spiritual qualities through
your thoughts, attitudes and behaviours. Being spiritual means
the ego has dissolved, virtue has been restored to character and
spiritual values connect your inner and outer worlds (thought
to action). It is the ability to see every other human being as
soul/spirit, and thereby transcend all the false identities of
race, colour, gender, nationality, profession and religion. It
is in this awareness that we are then able to recognise and connect
with the Supreme Power.
When you realise who you really are you will be at peace with
yourself not only because peace is your true and original nature
but there is no longer any inner division and therefore conflict
between the many identities that you had previously created (gender/nationality/profession/possessions
When you realise who you really are you are at peace with others.
You no longer have to defend or protect any false image of your
self, so you no longer perceive anyone else as a threat to those
When you realise who you truly are you are at peace with the
world because you will contain the world instead of it containing
you. Whereas before you allowed the world to impose itself on
you and shape your perceptions and feelings according to your
particular sense of identity, now your self-perception is stabilized
in the correct identity. In a sense you shape the world as you
bring it into your consciousness.
Can you give us some examples of using this spiritual intelligence
in practical, day-to-day life?
Spiritual intelligence expands your capacity to understand others
at the deepest level. Spiritual understanding allows you to discern
both the true cause of behaviour without judgement,
and serve the true needs of others until they themselves
learn to meet their own needs. This capacity is developed by first
learning to free yourself from attachment and neediness and being
able to meet our own inner needs. Attachment and neediness are
the opposite of being spiritually intelligent.
Personal Life: Spiritual intelligence frees you from neediness
and clinginess in your personal relationships. When you realise
you already have within you what you seek from others (love, happiness,
peace) you are then free to act and interact without any agenda.
In effect, you act from an authenticity that desires nothing of
another, but serves only to give. Paradoxically this frees both
parties to be themselves, which is the deepest foundation
for any open, healthy and harmonious relationship built on the
twin spiritual values of trust and respect.
Family Life: The culture of family life can easily revolve
around too much familiarity. This results in behaviours
which can swing from rejection, resistance and avoidance one moment,
to attachment, dependency and clinginess the next. Being spiritually
intelligent in a family context allows individuals to find a more
mature way to relate, free of emotional dependency, and able to
embrace the other regardless of their behaviour or
their emotional state.
Working Life: When spiritual intelligence is brought into
the workplace work ceases to become a daily chore in order to
earn money, and becomes a creative process of service and contribution.
Others are seen and treated as people and not objects/resources
to get a job done, and individuals have an opportunity to learn
the inner, invisible and subtle skills of building and sustaining
relationships in any area of life. These abilities include building
trust, acting with integrity, empathising at a level beyond emotion,
and the leadership of others through a consistently proactive
attitude and positive vision.
You are able to stay calm and focused in the face of crisis and
chaos, a more selfless and altruistic attitude towards others
and a more enlightened and relaxed perspective on life.
Does emotional intelligence affect spiritual intelligence
in any way?
Being able to recognise, understand and respond to the emotions
of others requires a level of emotional literacy that can only
be developed by learning to recognise ones own feelings
and emotions (self-awareness again). This falls squarely in the
arena of emotional intelligence.
However there is another layer below, which is the cause of the
emotions. We tend to learn that the cause of our feelings and
emotions are external events and other peoples actions.
But they are not. All emotions are caused by the self. Seeing
the original cause, and understanding what it means, is the territory
of spiritual intelligence.
Rational intelligence manages facts and information, using logic
and analysis to make decisions. Emotional intelligence is necessary
to understand and control ones emotions and feelings, while
being sensitive to the feelings of others. Spiritual intelligence,
on the other hand, is necessary:
* To find and use the deepest inner resources from which comes
the capacity to care and the power to tolerate and adapt
* To develop a clear and stable sense of identity as an individual
in the context of relationships
* To identify and align personal values with a clear sense of
* To live those values without compromise and thereby demonstrate
integrity by example
* To understand where and how each of the above is sabotaged by
Most of us have learned to be motivated by extrinsic or external
factors while a few have discovered that the deepest motivators
are intrinsic. We can consciously use our values to motivate us.
We can use our thoughts to motivate us, and we can even use memories
of yesterday to motivate us today. However the deepest motivator
for any human being is a clear sense of meaning and purpose. This
can only arise when we know who we are, where we are and what
we have at the deepest level. This is where emotional intelligence
flows into spiritual intelligence. Only in this state of self-awareness
are we able to discern the true meaning of things/ events/ circumstances
and only then are we able to see our purpose.
What are the key methods to learn and develop Spiritual Intelligence?
There are certain methods to unlearn the illusions and misperceptions
which stop you seeing who you are and being true to yourself.
The more these methods are practiced the faster the realisation
and the deeper the development of the spiritual intelligence.
* Meditation: Meditation is the cultivation of self awareness.
In the meditative process you learn about your self. Meditation
will also help you restore the ability to control your thoughts
and feelings, sharpen your ability to discern truth from illusion,
and thereby make more intelligent choices.
* Detached Observation: This is the ability to disengage
from the world of action and interaction outside your self, and
to disengage from the world of thoughts and feelings within your
consciousness. It is not avoidance of either world, but a way
to see more clearly and therefore understand more deeply what
is actually happening. This practice is also essential in order
not to waste energy at mental and emotional levels,
where much of your tiredness has its origins.
* Reflection: This involves taking time out on a daily
basis to review and re-assess past experiences of the interactions
with others. This allows the self/soul to build awareness of the
connection between inner world of thoughts and feelings and the
outer world of action and the consequences of those actions.
* Connecting: There is a higher source of spiritual power
and it is possible to connect with that source and empower oneself.
This accelerates the developmental process increasing both the
depth and breadth of your spiritual intelligence. Energy absorbed
from the Supreme Source is essential to clearing the inner clutter
and to focus your consciousness.
* Practice: New learning, new insights, new realisations
are only theories and have no power to change your life unless
they are brought into action, allowed to shape new behaviours,
and then perfected in the process of expression. Practical action
is essential to sustaining the momentum of developing spiritual
* Seeing: Spiritual vision is learning to see only the
best in others and by doing so empowering others to develop the
best in themselves. From a spiritual point of view seeing is creating
how you see the other is how you will create
the other within you, which will be both a reflection of how you
see yourself at that moment and the quality of the energy you
will then give to them.
January 6, 2010