Travel Spirituality

By November 5, 20102010, Asia

I feel as though my spirituality is different here in Malaysia than it is back home.  I don’t think it has changed, I think it is just that my awareness of spiritual experiences while traveling and the way I interact with God on the road is different than when I am at home.  When you are at home you are comfortable.  You are safe.  For the most part people and situations are not challenging your faith or the way you do things.  But when you are on the road you are bombarded with new ways of thinking, different religions, and strange ways of doing every day things.  It is not that these experiences are always hard or uncomfortable, it is that they get you thinking.  Some of these situations for me have been witnessing various people of different religions express their faith.  While in Malaysia I have been fortunate enough to enter a mosque, a Hindu temple, and a temple to the Chinese god of war.  I have also had many lectures and tours with Muslims and Hindus.  Their points of view, although not always far from my own, each have something obviously different about them.  These people come from a different place: culturally, historically, religiously, and geographically.  Interacting with them is like a rock being pushed up onto a beach by the waves.  It slowly smooths you out and refines you.  Sometimes the waves are small and soft, sometimes they are large and hard, and sometimes you will experience a storm.

For me personally, seeing the devotion and sincerity of Muslims and Hindus in Malaysia has challenged me to be just as devoted to my God as they are to their gods.  It has reignited in me a desire to live a life that reflects Jesus, and what better time to do this than in a country where Christianity is a minority.  There are two situations in particular that really contributed to this feeling.  One of these was witnessing Muslims praying in a mosque, and the other was walking through a Hindu temple as a few Hindus knelt before images and statues of their various gods.

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