On Being Highly Sensitive
  Seeking and Acceptance
  Highly Sensitive Men
     Personally Speaking
  Personal Growth
  Meeting Other HSPs
  HSP Resources

On Being Gifted
  The Gifted Adult
  Special Issues
  Blessing or Curse?
  Gifted Resources

On Being Introverted
  Inward Journey
  Outward Journey
  Shyness & Introversion
  Finding Self
  Introvert Resources

On Personality Types
  The Enneagram

On Psychology, etc.
  Counseling & Therapy
  Abnormal Psych?
  Choosing a Therapist

On Life, in General
  Dreams & Wishes

Putting it All Together

A Journal, of Sorts

Dedications & Thanks

About Me

A Gallery of Links
The Highly Sensitive Person and Spirituality
In her books, Elaine Aron often refers to HSPs as "Priestly Advisors"-- and being mostly introverted, and prone to extensive introspection, many HSPs do have a natural disposition towards being deeply spiritual people. Although I mention introverts here, I should point out that extraverted HSPs are also far more pensive and spiritually oriented than their non-HSP counterparts.

Although I have come across HSPs whose beliefs have run from "Fundamental Christianity" to "Atheism," it has become quite clear to me that while chosen denominations vary widely, HSPs are more likely than the rest of the world to find their spirituality through a lengthy journey of exploration of the possibilities, and less likely to just accept a familiar belief system without question.

Even those HSPs who might describe themselves as "deeply conservative Christians" often have arrived at their faith through a process that at one time might have completely rejected Christianity-- whether through simple inquiry, or unhappy experiences with the "conventional" church of their childhood. HSPs are often "seekers" who will spend much of their life simply exploring different belief systems before eventually deciding what makes life meaningful to them, in a spiritual sense. And even when they have made their choice, they remain uncommonly open to other ways of thinking.
Many HSPs seem drawn to metaphysics and Eastern thought, and disproportionately many (as compared to the general population) seem to live by a type of Personal Life Philosophy that has been patched together from many belief systems, rather than by a specific doctrine. And nature often figures heavily in HSP spirituality. Not long ago, I came across an HSP who described herself as an "Eco-Christian."
2003.08.31  2008.07.05
All content Copyright ©1995-2008 Peter Messerschmidt & Inner Reflections. All Rights Reserved.
More than a few HSPs struggle with their spiritual identity-- they often feel torn between a sense of "inner knowing" and a desire to fit in with a "congregation" of some kind. Beyond a struggle to find a "fit," many also struggle with the fact that worship is a "group activity," which can easily become an overwhelming experience.

Many seem content to leave their relationship with whatever "Greater Presence" speaks to them as a "private" matter rather than something they practice in a public place of worship. I know this has always held true for myself-- when I seek "fellowship," I do so in contexts other than spirituality-- reaching instead for smaller groups that share my interest psychology, reading, writing, the enneagram, dream exploration, nature and a variety of other topics.

Nature often plays a major role in HSP spirituality. Nature is where many find their center, and their inner peace. For me, nature is my church.
Finding our place is a deeply individualized journey. I have gained much of my recent spiritual perspective simply by spending time with other HSPs, and listening to their stories of spiritual discovery and insight. I have mostly avoided "general" spiritual groups, because I often ended up feeling like my own voice was being drowned out bythe greater world.

Whereas HSPs are often deeply spiritual, finding groups of HSPs can be a challenge. For those interested in pursuing spiritual matters with other HSPs, I know of one online group which I highly recommend: HSP Spirituality on the YahooGroups system is an "HSP safe" community dedicated exclusively to discussing all things spiritual and religious. Admission to the group is limited, and requires prior membership in the larger HSP Book group.

I wish you a peaceful and enlightening journey! If you are interested in learning more about my own personal journey, please visit the "personally speaking" page.
Fall leaves, Texas
Fall leaves, Texas