Each of our physical, emotional, mental and spiritual bodies have needs and desires.
- for the physical body we call them appetites.
- for the emotional body we call them lusts or longings.
- for the mental body we might call them quests (which can become fixations or obsessions)
- and for the spiritual body we could call them aspirations.
There is a market out there eager to meet our needs and equally keen to make money out of it.
- There are gym’s out there keen to help us develop our physical bodies.
- For our emotional bodies there are theatre and arts and entertainment services.
- For our mental bodies there is a huge range of University courses and other means of study.
- For our spiritual bodies there are ashrams and retreats and meditation centres – a little harder to find, but they do exist.
All these I am calling enablers.
There are also regulators to make sure that we do not get too enthusiastic and over-indulge, and it is just as well that they are there. There are two main regulatory authorities:
- Religious institutions
These could both also be enablers, providing both assistance and encouragement in addition to preventing over-indulgence. If we consider the virtues and vices of Christianity (see table below), these are intended as a set of moral codes for the prefrontal cortex and they apply across all the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual aspects.
Our set of moral emotions in the conscious brain are fully programmable and re-programmable. Many of these inhibitors do seem to be common-sense and almost intuitive (we pick many of these up during early life). In addition to the Christian moral codes, I’ve also included the moral values from Benjamin Franklin, and the 10 Buddhist perfections. There is much in common between these different moral codes.
There is a more complete discussion on the enablers in the Personal Journey section, but we will briefly mention them here to balance up the discussion on the regulators and inhibitors. We all need some growth and encouragement.
Private industry provides enablers through:
- Banking and finance. Money is always an enabler!
- Real Estate. This is a physical enabler – we all need a place in which to live.
- Human Resources. This is an emotional enabler; people resources are required for all types of work.
- ICT (Information & Communications Technology). This can be a significant mental enabler, capable of delivering education and a great productivity enhancer if implemented correctly.
The government in most countries provides both regulatory and enabling functions.
With most of these regulators and enablers there is again major focus on the physical area, and lesser amounts in emotional and mental areas, and very little in the spiritual area. There is more discussion on this in the Personal Journey section, but it should be evident that if you are interested in spiritual growth you are going to have to make significant effort yourself. There aren’t a lot of opportunities or encouragement available. Not a total absence, but you are going to have to do a bit of searching.