Spiritual progress cannot be seen in some people even if they perform regular prayers in a temple or other religious places. This lack of progress spiritually is due to the reasons like
- Lack of inherent spiritual essence.
- Lack of interest in spirituality or almighty.
- Lack of self-inquiry or questioning.
- Lack of a proper teacher or guru.
- Due to lifestyle changes or demands.
- Due to environment or place where the person lives.
Lack of inherent spiritual essence: This seems interesting, but it is true that some people have an intrinsic spiritual nature. This can be seen even in their behavior, manners. These people grow spiritually even without any prayer or help. People who lack this spiritual essence internally cannot grow spiritually without some help.
Once to a woman who comes to fetch water, Jesus remarks that I will give that type of water which will never exhaust as it is will be an oasis of wisdom in you. This oasis is the inherent spiritual essence.
Those who have it needs no teacher or books to grow up spiritually.
Lack of interest in spirituality: This is another factor. Though a person will be religious, he will not be interested in the details of religious teachings. He just is a religious fanatic with a lack of interest in spirituality. Even such people will not grow spiritually.
Lack of self-inquiry: Self-inquiry is the biggest or vital factor to grow in spirituality. Those who have questions like who am I? What is the universe or existence or death etc. will try to find answers through spirituality. Such people grow up spiritually by continuous self-inquiry and discussion with wise people.
Lack of proper Teacher or Guru: All the disciples of Jesus are simple people without any spiritual interest or knowledge. But since this great teacher calls them to follow him, they support him till his death. They keep watching the spiritual powers of their teacher, yet they are suspicious and not spiritually mature until Jesus is not present before. Once their teacher is not before them, they develop immense spiritual progress and follow the path of their teacher. Thus a good spiritual teacher can lead to spiritual progress. So lack of proper guru or teacher will hamper proper spiritual progress.
Even Rama Krishna Paramahamsa was needed for the spiritual progress of Swami Vivekananda. There are many examples wherein a proper teacher enhances spiritual progress in his student.
Due to lifestyle changes or demands:
The present lifestyle changes like 24/7 jobs and busy works keep a person away from chances of spiritual thought. He rarely gets chance to think in spiritual. This also hampers spiritual progress.
Due to environment or place where the person lives:
One can never imagine a person in place with common struggles to grow spiritually. They are just struggling for food and survival. But the people in countries like the united states and other well-developed nations with sufficient lifestyle think of spirituality. As they are content in life and they have time to think of more peace and better meaning for life.