Spirituality is the direct experience of the divine. We all glimpse it. The great teachers lived in that Light, but returned to communicate to us. Think of them as trees with deep roots. We can pluck the fruit, sit in their shade and be nourished even if we could not root so deeply, climb so high. A great teacher lifts you up.
That is spirituality, and the experience of being in the presence of a great teacher. After they die, those who sat in their shade write down what they said and repeat it, whether they themselves have roots so deep, or branches so high. They try, even if they do not themselves understand or experience.
But this is like cutting down the tree and building a church out of it. This is religion.
And it can still be an honorable and good thing. And spiritual teachers can function within that structure. Some are wonderful. Others are barren, but can perform the ceremonies we associate with power…but have no power of their own, conduct no light.
Better to actually nourish children, don’t you think? But this requires that you grow your roots deep, lift your branches high, and be willing to let all seekers taste the fruits of your efforts, so that those seeking wisdom can separate you from the thousands of other trees in the forest. All those trees say: I have the fruit you seek!
But if you cannot see it, touch it, taste it…you will starve even as you hallucinate you are being fed.
Beware of trees that produce nothing that directly nourishes you.
Especially if they ask that you gather and bring the fruits of your labors to them.