When you embark on a spiritual journey, a journey inwards you can often be beset with doubt. Doubting the truth of your inner guidance, doubting the mysteries of a reality that can't be seen and documented but which must be felt and trusted.
One day you might wake up and have a strong urge to quit your corporate job and spend 6 weeks in an Ashram in India (yes this did happen to me). And all of your body, all the signs of the universe are telling you this is exactly what you should be doing with your life. The flights are super cheap, you just got a good bonus which will cover all the costs, the lease on your flat comes to an end the day you would need to fly out ... And you decide yes, I am going to take a chance, take the plunge and do this for myself - you only live once right? You are full of confidence, full of happiness and joy about the prospect of doing that which your heart is telling you to do, finally listening and following your inner guide.
And then the voice of doubt enters your mind. Am I crazy? How can I throw away this job, career, lifestyle? What will I do in an ashram for 6 weeks? What if I don't like the people or the food, what if I get food poisoning? What will me boss think when I tell her I'm resigning to go sit in an ashram in India? What will my parents think ...?! Your mind is riddled with doubt and you are now more than ready to throw away that silly idea of following your intuition. What is that anyway? Intuition. How do I know that is real? Why should I trust it? What a silly idea. And so you don't go and two more years of your life pass by, all the while with this underlying sense of discontent clouding your days, a sense that something is not quite right. And then again this calling to follow your inner guide, your intuition pops up again, perhaps in a different way? What do you do this time? Listen to your inner guide or head to the voice of doubt once more?
Perhaps though we can use that doubt to help us rather than hinder our development. Instead of doubting your inner guide why not doubt ourselves? Doubt our ignorance, our assumption that we know everything, doubt our idea that everything needs to be explained? Use this doubt to inspire you to discover your own wisdom, your own truth.
In The Tibetan Book on Living and Dying, Sogyal Rinpoche says on doubt, "What we need to learn is how slowly to change our culturally conditioned and passionate involvement with doubt into a free, humorous, and compassionate one. This means giving doubts time, and giving ourselves time to find answers to our questions that are not merely intellectual or "philosophical", but living and real and genuine and workable. Doubts cannot resolve themselves immediately; but if we are patient a space can be created within us, in which doubts can be carefully and objectively examined, unraveled, dissolved, and healed."
So give yourself that space, that time to hear your doubts, humour them and let them unravel. Give the insights a chance to shine through. It will take time though so be patient and kind to yourself in the meantime.