A spiritual journal is a written record of personal reactions relating to spiritual matters. Keeping a spiritual journal is a great way to understand our spiritual journey and to track how we are growing spiritually. Regular journaling can aid us in becoming who we want to be.
How to Begin a Spiritual Journal
- Begin by gathering your favorite writing materials and a special journal for writing in, which you can either purchase or create on your own.
- Set a time each day, each week or whenever you feel inspired to sit and self reflect on your spiritual journey. Date your entries. If you’re away from home, jot down the place and why you are there. It will help to put your journal entry into a context.
- Keep your spiritual journal with you at all times. You never know when something will make you wonder about spirituality. Keeping your journal on hand allows you to write down quotes, spiritual text references, or general thoughts you wish to reflect on at a later time.
- Write quickly, allowing the words to freefall from your subconscious. Write from your feeling, accept whatever comes to mind, and note it in your journal. Banish your internal editor and don’t censor anything.
- Acknowledge your blessings. Write about the things in your life that make you feel grateful. Research shows that people who make a point to feel gratitude are happier and healthier people.
- Set spiritual goals. These can be things you wish to do on a daily basis to further your spiritual growth or things you hope to do in a certain time frame. Make sure you set an end date so that you strive to accomplish your goal within the allotted time.
- If you have trouble writing at some point, get creative with the writing techniques you use. Try recording snippets of conversations, facts, feelings, fantasies, descriptions, impressions, quotes, images and ideas.
- Review your journal entries at least once a month. By taking time to self reflect on your prior entries, you can better see the direction of spiritual enlightenment you are heading in. Through reading your spiritual writing, you can use the information to work toward new goals, search for more information to questions you have asked yourself in the last month, and give thanks for the lessons you have already learned.
What to Record in a Spiritual Journal
- Places you’ve been and what you draw from them (spiritual pilgrimage and travel)
- Meaningful or favorite quotations from spiritual books you are reading
- That which comes to you while meditating
- Lessons you have learned in the school of life
- Daily events of personal or spiritual significance
- Favorite prayers or affirmations
- Specific prayers you have prayed
- God’s or Divine Source’s answers to your prayers
- Feelings about people, things and events that have touched your life
- Precious insights from daily life
- Praise and thanksgiving for God’s grace
- Special experiences (retreats, pilgrimages, “mountaintop” moments)
- Experiences when you have been keenly aware of God or God’s will
- Special things that others have written or said
- Things you’ve discovered while looking back in the journal
- Dreams, if your dreams have some sort of spiritual angle to them
Benefits of Keeping a Spiritual Journal
- Clarifies one’s understandings of the nature and will of God or the Divine Source.
- Records spiritual thoughts and realizations one has, so they’re not forgotten.
- Makes a record of one’s spiritual growth.
- Helps one to keep a balance between head and heart.
- Helps one to know oneself better.
- Helps one to nurture and build one’s own spiritual philosophy.
- Helps one to learn to hear the voice within.