Finally, we come to the heart of the work of the priestess or priest of Isis. This is the work of personal spiritual development.
Spiritual growth is a process, not an end result. It is the ongoing search for and discovery of the truth of our hearts and souls, our Selves, and our relationship with the Divine. It is not a single truth. It is not contained in the pages of just one book—though Paths to it may be found in many books, written in many different languages. It is a truth most convincingly found in our own experience of the Divine by whatever Name we call It and in whatever form we imagine It. This truth calls us from the core of our Being. It is the truth against which our hearts will be weighed on the Scales of Truth when we pass from this world into the next. Spiritual growth is the process of discovering our personal truth and learning how that truth is in harmony with the Divine, eternal truth. Once discovered, this gnosis—this deep, sacred knowing—can serve us as a guide for creating ways to live life more authentically.
Our entire relationship with Isis is part of this work. Any and everything we do with Her helps this process. Yet one of it’s most important aspects can be called the “Invocation of the Shining One.”
Like Isis Herself, the Shining One, in Egyptian, the Akh, has been called by many names: the Higher Self, the Deep Self, the True Self, the God/dess Self, the Genius, the Atman, the Augoeides, the Holy Guardian Angel, and the Isis Within. It is that greater part of each one of us which is essentially Divine. Contact with this Divine Self is critical to each person’s spiritual development.
Some people find they have difficulty with this aspect of the spiritual journey. This is genuinely difficult work, yet it is vital work. Have patience and persistence. Simply return again and again to the work of making contact with and experiencing the Shining One, the Isis Within.
This work is hard to talk about because it becomes very personal and individual. If you want insight into this work, there are numerous books you can explore; look for works on enlightenment. Hindu, Buddhist, Christian, Pagan…all can offer insights.
It isn’t easy. It’s ecstasy. It’s deep and affecting. It will make you weep. It will make you laugh with joy. We get a glimpse now and then. And then we go on with our lives.
Spiritual growth does not mean there will be no more trouble in our lives. Let me say that again: spiritual growth does not insulate us from trouble or pain. No matter how spiritually developed we may be, we and the people in our lives are still human, capable of all the beauty and ugliness of humanity. What spiritual development does mean is that we will be able to cope with our day-to-day duties and the trials we encounter in our lives in a much wiser manner.
In our relationship with Isis, we experience the sacred. We grow. We discover who we really are. We become wiser and more compassionate. We learn how to live more authentically, in greater harmony with our true selves and the Divine reality of the Goddess. It is, perhaps, the most vital aspect of serving the Goddess as Her priestess or priest. If we have done it well, we will become better people.