What is the Nature of this Reality? What is Spirituality? What Does it Mean to Live Consciously?

Let me share some thoughts and ideas about consciously exploring your spiritual side, in the form of questions and answers, with the intention that it may help you explore your own spiritual path.

This long, 10 article series will explore some of life's most pressing questions. Questions like:

The article you are reading right now will explore the following topics:

1. What is the nature of this reality? What is spirituality? What does it mean to live consciously?

  • Why spirituality?
  • What are we? Are we physical beings with minds? Are we spiritual beings?
  • What is the nature of this reality?
  • What does it mean to live consciously?

The next articles will go over questions such as:

2. How powerful are we? (read it here)

3. Are we mortal or immortal? Do we reincarnate and live multiple lives? (read it here)

4. Why do certain problems plague us? Why do we struggle sometimes? (read it here)

5. How can we feel safe and secure in this life? (read it here)

6. Why do we die? Why does death exist? (read it here)

7. Why do we have individual personalities? What’s the point of human relationships? Why are we sexual beings? (read it here)

8. Why do we have laws? (read it here)

9. How can we create and experience more abundance? (read it here)

10. Why do we have wars? If we don’t pay attention to violence, could we still be victims of it? ([read it here](https://www


So, let's begin...

Why spirituality?

I use the word spirituality to refer to your current understanding of the entire universe of existence and your role within it as a conscious being.

  • Who are you?
  • What are you?
  • And what is this reality in which you find yourself?

The word is just a label, so don’t get caught up on the word or attach too much baggage to it. The concept behind it is what matters.

You can refer to this same concept as your philosophy of life, the big picture, the meaning of life, etc.

What are we? Are we physical beings with minds? Are we spiritual beings?

We are what we make ourselves to be.

From one perspective we’re all separate individuals. From another perspective we can see ourselves as a unified whole.

Imagine a gigantic sheet of aluminum foil with billions of tiny indentations in it, like protruding fingers.

As individuals we’re the dents. Collectively we’re the foil. You can choose to adopt either perspective, or switch back and forth. You can experience oneness as well as individuality.

As an individual your power is limited.

  • You’re just a dent in a sea of other dents.
  • But you have an interesting perspective on the whole sheet.
  • No other dent sees the same picture you do.
  • No other dent experiences the sheet in the same way.

The collective perspectives of all these individual dents add up to the self-awareness of the entire sheet. As individuals we help this reality understand itself.

As a collective...

Acting through the perspective of the entire foil, however, we’re much more powerful.

The better we understand this foil, the more we can consciously create eddies and ripples in it that will influence the other dents. But in order to do that, we must learn to think beyond the level of individuality.

The primary reason these dents exist is to help the foil understand itself. Our greater mission or purpose is to explore the foil. The foil is vast, almost endless.

What is the nature of this reality?

If it could be reduced to a single word, I’d say that the nature of this reality is exploration.

By this I mean the exploration of essentially everything.

If it can be explored and experienced - if it can be imagined - then it will be explored.

Your human life is a part of that exploration.

What does it mean to live consciously?

Living consciously means that you choose to actively participate in helping reality explore itself.

Living consciously means saying yes to your spiritual job, which is to be a good explorer.

You’re going to be an explorer anyway. You can’t help but do that. You’re guaranteed to live a unique life with a unique perspective. Even if you refuse to explore, you’re still exploring refusal.

You can either let these explorations be doled out to you - by other people, by society, or by the fluctuations of the universe - or you can consciously choose some of these explorations for yourself.

The more you deliberately decide how you’re going to participate in reality’s exploration of itself, the more consciously you’re living.

Personally I find this to be a wondrous opportunity. We have an entire universe of possibilities in front of us, and we’re invited to dive in and explore.

It’s like being invited to an infinite amusement park.

  • Some rides are fun.
  • Some rides are adventurous.
  • Some rides are scary.
  • Some rides are spooky.

The whole park is a gift.

Written by Steve Pavlina. Steve Pavlina is a human alarm clock - he wakes up people who are sleeping through life. Steve has a personal development blog for smart people, which you can follow here: stevepavlina.com/blog/