Where Is Spirit Located?

"Here's a simple thought experiment. Picture the following men (or make them women if you like), and then tell me which you think are probably the most spiritual?

1. A man in an Armani suit.
2. A man driving a red Ferrari.
3. A man pitching baseball in the major leagues.
4. A professional comedian.
5. A mathematician.
6. A man in a tank top lifting weights.
7. An Olympic swimmer.
8. A college professor.
9. A model.
10. A sexual surrogate.

"Which do you think is the most spiritual? Which do you think least spiritual?

"It's funny, isn't it, the things that we think are not spiritual? Why do we picture most of those people as not being very spiritual? Or conversely, why do we have such a hard time seeing them as being spiritual? Aren't we actually just giving our own prejudices about where we think spirit is or is not to be found? Or worse: aren't we really just announcing how old and fragmented and NOT INTEGRAL our ideas about spirit are? Why is telling jokes not spiritual? Why is something beautiful — a car, a suit — not spiritual? Why is physical excellence not spiritual? Why is sex not spiritual? Why is . . .

"It's a new world, it's a new spirituality, it's a new time, it's a new man, it's a new woman. All of the above categories are deeply spiritual. Mostly all that list is, is a list of things we are afraid to allow spirituality to touch. Dead from the neck, down, with no humor, no sex, no aesthetic sensibility whatsoever, wasting away, spending one's days and nights ignoring the world and lost in prayer . . . what a strange God, that.

"Well, no more. Dead to life, dead to the body, dead to nature, dead to sex, dead to beauty, dead to excellence: that never was a real God, anyway, but merely a desiccated distillation of the things that men and women always had the most difficulty handling, and things from which God became the Great Escape, a distillation and concatenation of every phobic and repressive impulse a human being possessed.

"Well, no more. It's a new world, it's a new spirituality, it's a new man, it’s a new woman.

"The Spirit is integral, and so is the human being."