The Meaning of Spirituality



Spirituality is the wholeness of being connected to something greater than yourself. This is a very abstract definition of spirituality, and it is very difficult to try and engage the meaning of spirituality without being abstract. Some may think that spirituality, is a synonym for faith and therefore, it is a religious term. This is not necessarily true. Spirituality can be, and should be, a large part of the religious experience. Spirituality can also refer to one's self exploration, in forms of meditation, prayer and contemplation. These practices allow for a person to become in tune with the essence of their being. Spirituality could also be a way of looking out into nature or the world and feeling a connection nature or an individual's metaphorical understanding of the universe.

Traditionally, spirituality was seen as something religious, but the growth of secularism in the western world today has created what is secular spirituality. Secular spirituality is simply a cultural phenomenon which devotes to spiritual ideology without the religious framework. Although it may have a few overlaps with the same types of practices as religious spirituality, the motivation for it is very different. The emphasis that secular spirituality has is that it is on practice rather than belief. Moreover, rather than putting an emphasis on the relationships with the divine, it is on the inner peace of the individual.

While trying to peg a definition of spirituality, it is easy to see that there is no one place to find a definition that is all encompassing. There are apparent themes when it comes to the meaning of spirituality and that is connection and oneness. Whether this connection is with God, religious sentiment, understanding of self, humanity, nature or the universe, the connection is the key part of the definition. Spirituality has to do with feeling this connection and maintaining it with an open and insightful way of life. In this light, the meaning of spirituality can be equated with an abstract form of consciousness.