What Is Spirituality? What is the meaning and definition of this term?
If you ask people what is spirituality you will get many different answers.
What Is Spirituality – Various Definitions
There are people who would say that for them, spirituality means religion, being religious, and following the laws and tradition of religion, probably their own religion.
For some, this word means belief in God and the power that created life and the Universe.
Another answer you might get is that spirituality means anything to do with the soul and the spirit.
Some people associate spirituality with the new age movement, with healing, psychic powers, Astrology, the paranormal and everything that is not physical.
For a few, spirituality could mean meditation, yoga, the expansion of consciousness and spiritual awakening.
As you see, spirituality means different things to different people. All these definitions and meanings share the idea that spirituality is something beyond the physical world. People consider it as something mysterious, exotic or rigorous, depending on their point of view.
Some people consider this term as something sublime and beyond comprehension.
What Is Spirituality according to Various Dictionaries
The Cambridge dictionary defines spirituality as, “The quality that involves deep feelings and beliefs of a religious nature, rather than the physical parts of life.”
Collins dictionary says, “Spiritual means relating to people’s thoughts and beliefs, rather than to their bodies and physical surroundings.”
The Oxford dictionary says, “Relating to or affecting the human spirit or soul as opposed to material or physical things.”
Wikipedia says, “There is no single, widely agreed upon definition of spirituality. Surveys of the definition of the term, as used in scholarly research, show a broad range of definitions, ranging from uni-dimensional definitions such as a personal belief in a supernatural realm to broader concepts such as a quest for an ultimate/sacred meaning, transcending the base/material aspects of life, and/or a sense of awe/wonderment and reverence toward the universe.”
Most people accept the meaning their families or teachers attached to this concept and think no more about it. They live their daily life without going deeply into this subject.
Most people, even if not religious, grow up with a certain, usually vague, belief and never question it.
There is another meaning to spirituality. It is the process of awakening from ordinary consciousness, rising above the ego and awakening to a wider consciousness. It can mean expanding the mind beyond limitations, thoughts, and limited viewpoints about life and the Universe.
Spirituality can also mean the process of making the mind free from fears, worries and nonstop thinking, and experiencing inner peace and bliss in one’s everyday life.
Some traditions, especially in the Far East, like Buddhism, Advaita Vedanta and others consider spirituality as the search to know your real self, to discover the true nature of consciousness and gain spiritual awakening.
As you see, spirituality is a broad concept with room for many perspectives and interpretations.
Even today, in this materialist world, spirituality still has its place. It is not something that is going to disappear. In general, it includes a sense of connection to something bigger and higher than ourselves, and sometimes it involves a search for the meaning of life.
As you see, the question, “What is spirituality”, has different answers. The answer depends on who you ask.
“Just as a candle cannot burn without fire, men cannot live without a spiritual life.” – Buddha
“The essential lesson I’ve learned in life is to just be yourself. Treasure the magnificent being that you are and recognize first and foremost you’re not here as a human being only. You’re a spiritual being having a human experience.”
– Wayne Dyer
“There is a light in this world. A healing spirit more powerful than any darkness we may encounter. We sometimes lose sight of this force when there is suffering, and too much pain. Then suddenly, the spirit will emerge through the lives of ordinary people who hear a call and answer in extraordinary ways.”
– Richard Attenborough
“In order to experience everyday spirituality, we need to remember that we are spiritual beings spending some time in a human body.”
– Barbara De Angelis
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