The Virtue is Commitment and the Saboteur is Loyalty.
Commitment is a sacred dedication, loyalty is not always sacred.
Commitment to spirituality doesn’t require loyalty to anyone, any group or any particular way.
Commitment is voluntary and it is a sacred vow you make to yourself. This vow comes from within and then it affects those around you. Commitment comes from the deepest part of your heart. Only you know if you are truly committed or not.
Loyalty may or may not be voluntary and it may require a demonstration of your loyalty, or you may be required to make a payment. We may be loyal merely because we want to belong to something, or just to fit in. Loyalty is a bit more flexible in its identity. We may aspire to be loyal, but there is a part of us that is merely saying yes until further notice.
Loyalty can be bought, but commitment is earned.
Loyalty comes from an old french word that is similar to legal. It is a pledge or fealty to a leader. Loyalties can be rewarded and disloyalty can bring about punitive measures. Commitment is its own reward.
Loyalties can be bought and sold, they can be demanded or coerced. Loyalty can be a good thing, a tainted thing or it can just be living a lie. We can be loyal to a company, a person or a group of persons with a particular ideology, but that does not mean we are committed to their values. Loyalty can be given in hopes of receiving something in return. That is more of a type of bargaining, but we tend to call it loyalty.
Commitment is not perfection, it is a dedicated practice.
Commitment is a higher power than loyalty, just like justice is a higher power than the law. When we are committed to a spiritual practice, we understand that there will be times when we fall back, when we suffer from resistance, but our commitment keeps us motivated. Commitment to a spiritual practice is our reward. Our commitment produces the changes we want, like inner peace.
Committing to a spiritual practice is not without failure, but commitment allows understanding and compassion to lend their strengths to the dedicated efforts. Being dedicated to the process of becoming more peaceful through my everyday life requires my commitment to myself.
At first glance loyalty seems to be a good thing, it implies fidelity.
Commitment is about our inner thoughts. I am committed to my spiritual practice, but when I am over reacting to someone, it may not appear that I am committed, but I am. I will struggle with myself until I can return to the situation with more humbleness in my heart. Commitment does not mean easy street.
Loyalty is measured by our words and our words do not always match our thoughts. Commitment is measured by our conscience. Commitment is rich in courage, courage to not only say what is true, but to live with integrity and conviction of the heart.
Peace be with you,