Spirituality and Human Dignity – Federico de Sanchez
There has been a lot of talk lately about achieving a dignified death.
Lately there has been a lot of talk about the question of achieving a dignified death, of dying with dignity. Biological death is the final achievement of a life developed in an efficient, positive way, assumed and experienced from ethical values of responsibility, conscience with our commitment to personal growth, exercised within the limits of a freedom that implies respect and self-recognition, and of the rest of humanity. Biological death must be assumed as an unquestionable reality.
Living with dignity is synonymous with respect for the personal identity that we are, for our fellow human beings, for other sentient beings, for the environment near and far, for the planet. Life is very beautiful, a gift of the Spirit that deserves to be lived with honesty and fullness, from the inner balance, transmitting all those universal values that have always been deposited for the growth and development of our species.
Human life is valuable in itself
Human life is valuable in itself; even more: it must be valued, respected and firmly protected. Our own life is not something superfluous, the fruit of chance. It is an extraordinary gift to be able to apprehend and understand the mysteries of life, the world and the universe… from our finite mind. The Human Being is not, as stated by the German existentialist philosopher M. Heidegger, “a being for death”, but a wonderful reality in constant transformation, in search of the ultimate meaning of his being (Federico de Sanchez).
Human beings have needs. Needs that must be met on a daily basis. The need to feed oneself, the need to clothe oneself, to have a roof over one’s head… Biological needs, related to survival, which are essential to our species. In addition, there are other realities that have similar importance to the previous ones and that, generally, we tend to give less value to them: emotional well-being (thoughts, feelings, emotions…), which is synonymous with overall health. All of the above, added together, would be equivalent to enjoying a correct, adequate and balanced quality of life.
Our species has the enormous fortune of being able to access a reality of a superior nature, a realm of existential manifestation that implies a qualitative leap with respect to the exclusively materialistic world, which allows us to question ourselves about the very meaning of life, of “my life”. From the respect for scientific-technological approaches – useful on a daily basis, although in constant change and mutability – there is a much deeper, stable and accurate sense that expresses the experiential feeling of Spirituality.
Spirituality implies understanding
Spirituality implies understanding, searching for the essential keys to the manifestation of our being. The Human Being is not only a complex sophisticated machinery that can be permanently repaired, changing worn parts for new ones; if everything were so simple, we would not have the marvelous capacity to keep asking the eternal questions that, since our ancestors, keep on hitting our conscience: ¿?Who I am?, ¿why I am here?, ¿where I direct my steps?…From temporal limits (being born, growing, shining and extinguishing) to higher planes of infinity we can grow in consciousness and essence, contributing to create a rewarding reality.
The Human Being is a complex being
The Human Being is a complex being, in a permanent state of movement and change. Rational reality is not as simple as it is apparently presented. Feeling and experiencing is a constant in our species. In our current era, technological and subjected to an extremely dynamic acceleration, where the advances of the sciences pretend to want to eclipse the sense of humanistic vision of our species; on the contrary, we can easily verify the opposite of what is apparent… especially in times of crisis. Even in a situation of material and value crisis such as the present one, it is time for hope: there is always time for hope!
Ignorance is nothing other than lack of knowledge; when we have authentic knowledge we possess the keys to liberation from fear, obfuscation, pain and suffering that disturb us and prevent us from developing, imprisoning us with the thick chains of the perishable, temporal and finite that bind us to a life full of absurd prejudices and vanalities, which lead us to crash against the rocks of the cliff of existential failure.
From Spirituality, the New Spirituality that is authentic personal growth and development, we can break those chains of the everyday and existential, of the ephemeral and minuscule that separates us from the full reality of our being. Our consciousness is a wonderful tool that allows us to grow, broadening and expanding the space-time limits, to connect with the essence that we carry deep inside us, the one that can guide us in our daily lives.
We propose that our essential condition is to transform our existence into something festive, responsible and transcendent; for which we have to express infinite and renewed gratitude every day. Our greatest capital and treasure is within us: let us stop the external agitation and listen to our heart, in order to connect with the universal soul of life.
We will conclude our reflection with some words of Jesus of Nazareth, the Christ:
“Recognize what is before your eyes and that which is hidden from you will be made manifest to you, for there is nothing hidden that will not come to be discovered.”
Federico de Sanchez
Spiritualist, philosopher, theologian and spiritual counselor. President of the Spanish Society for the Diffusion of Spirituality (SEDEL), and of the Spanish Society for the Support of Bereavement and a Serene and Lucid Death (SEAMUS) www.federicodesanchez.es