"Just as a candle cannot burn without fire, men cannot live without a spiritual life."
-- Buddha

Spirituality is very important to our health and well-being as people living with Parkinson's disease or other movement disorders. Why? Because it encourages us to remember we are not alone, that we are part of something larger than ourselves.

Every one of us has a spiritual side. It is simply built into us as human beings. We can think of spirituality as another sense like taste, touch, hearing, sight, and smell. It is essential to human life and can help us find the strength and peace we need to face life with a chronic condition.

"Sometimes people get the mistaken notion that spirituality is a separate department of life," writes David Steindl-Rast, a noted author and Catholic monk. "But rightly understood, it is a vital awareness that pervades all realms of our being ... Wherever we may come alive, that is the area in which we are spiritual."

There are many ways in which to explore your unique spiritual journey as a person living with Parkinson's disease. 

You may want to visit different houses of worship, experience yoga, guided meditation, a retreat like the ones we create at Spirited Movement or the fellowship of a Parkinson's support group as you journey on. Whatever you do, be prepared to find inspiration everywhere!

Lindsay McGrath, M.Div. is director of the Spirited Movement Foundation, a foundation offering retreats for people living with chronic illness and their caregivers. Upcoming retreats include "Moving in the Spirit, A Day of Health & Hope" on Saturday, April 28th for people with Parkinson's disease, Dystonia, Tremor, and other movement disorders, their loved ones, and caregivers. On Saturday, May 19th, a special "Care for Caregivers" retreat will welcome people who care for chronically ill, disabled, or aged family members or friends. For more information, please visit www.spiritedmovement.org or call (781)385-9401.