Spiritual Maturity is generally a function of chronological age.
Spiritual Maturity is not always a function of chronological age, but generally, that’s how it works.
Some young people at age 25 or 30 are wise beyond their years, But no matter what spiritual path one takes, the general principles of spiritual maturity are most often manifested by those who have acquired the wisdom that come with experience.
Those who are mature in years tend to have had experiences that help them understand, incorporate and demonstrate the fruit of the spirit, or the actions that are in concert with the highest ideals of their value and belief system.
It is easy when young to extol the virtues of spiritual maturity, but at this time of life the proclamations are generally conceptual or theoretical. Yes, forgiveness or tolerance are good ideas. But have you forgiven somebody from bankrupting you? Or from character assassination in the community or workplace? Have you forgiven a lover who became an adulterer or adulteress? Have you forgiven a manager who was insensitive, egocentric, and cruel? Have you forgiven yourself for youthful indiscretions or things you wish you hadn’t done? Have you made amends to a friend for hurting them when you didn’t mean to do that?
In the famous bible parable of the adulteress caught in the act, for which the standard penalty was stoning to death, Christ said, “let the one without sin cast the first stone”. Here it is noted that the older men turned away and left the scene first. This is spiritual maturity on display. With age comes the wisdom to know that all men are capable and able, and even guilty of acting out a glitch in the system. The bible calls it sin. But that is just one word to describe how we manage to fall short of our own innate greatness.
We are each born to greatness. We are created in the very image of God or the Supreme Spirit by whatever name you know him or her, or to fulfill an important destiny. Perhaps we are just born to be as we are without falling to social pressures to be what parents or society wants us to be? Our very DNA creates a possibility of success in some areas more than others. Our nurture shapes the spiritual being we become. But regardless of the inner program, or the socially modified program, we manage to pursue our own best interest along the way. And sometimes that means we hurt somebody or violate the general rules of society or propriety. It’s easy to be human instead of spiritual, if you understand my meaning.
Babies have a lot to learn. Young people have a lot to learn. Older people still have a lot to lean, judging by the amount of judgment and finger pointing that goes on. But older people tend to have acquired a maturity along the way leaving them with less to learn about living, moving, and acting in the best interest of spiritual good.
To be aware of the greatness inside of each person, to be truly free of criticism of others, to take life as it comes, to live out or inner design, these are the goals of spiritual maturity.
To help others escape the lies that once held us captive is to understand Plato’s “Parable Of The Cave” or Christ’s exhortation to go and make disciples. Buda wants you to know that you are already there – the answers are already in you and around you if you accept this revelation.
Not much has changed in thousands of years. It takes many years for the most advanced spirits to become truly free of social and religious dogma and doctrine and truly achieve the personal stature of being spiritually powerful. Each of us is “a God”. Each of us are able to choose between good and evil. Each of us can bring more spiritual truth to this human experience in the world we live in. But the older you are, the better your chances are of understanding and living this.
So, with this truth, I rest my case. No matter what the tradition, advancing age assists spiritual maturity.