Saturday, October 23, 2010
WHAT IS SPIRITUALITY?
I have been receiving queries away from this site from members who are following me. The essence of one of the queries was a need for clarification of what Spirituality is.
I remember speaking to one of my best friends whom I have known for over 30 years. She and her family are devout in their faith. Not only do they go to church every Sunday but the husband is an "elder" of their community and is on the board of directors.
A conversation came up about my three beautiful children and they know my ex wife is Jewish and that I was once a Greek Orthodox Priest. They also know that our children are not committed members of any structured religion.
I made the comment that the most spiritual of the three children is my youngest daughter. My friend looked at me perplexed and said, "Oh yea?", what church is she attending these days? It was obvious that She associates spirituality with a building and dogma with rules and regulations. As if to insinuate that outside the structured environment of a church, spirituality is not possible.
Here is what Wikipedia says about the definition of the word "Spirit"
"The English word spirit (from the Latin spiritus breath) has many differing meanings and connotations, all of them relating to a non-corporeal substance contrasted with the material body. The spirit of a human being is thus the animating, sensitive or vital principle in that individual, similar to the soul taken to be the seat of the mental, intellectual and emotional powers. The notions of a person's "spirit" and "soul" often also overlap, as both contrast with body and both are imagined as surviving the bodily death in religion and occultism, and "spirit" can also have the sense of "ghost", i.e. manifestations of the spirit of a deceased person".
In Greek, Spirit is "Pnevma". Thus, part of the title of this blog, "Ancient Spirit" as translated.
The soul is distinguished from the Spirit as the word "Soul" in Greek is "Psyche". The individual human Spirit is deeply rooted in the soul and it's development of Spiritual growth and change. The Soul is distinguished from the Spirit as the soul may be the driving force of mental and intellectual actions. The Spirit is a feeling that "tickles" the human shell or body.
Now allow us to consider that we were born, since from the beginning of mankind, with this Spirit and the soul may evolve from the stimulation the spirit receives. All the tools you need to evolve spiritually are inside you! No church or dogma gives them to you. After all, you were born with them. What conduit brings them to surface is your choice. There is no right or wrong way.
Spirituality is the experience of a universal connection of positive energy with your fellow human and animal. Churches, books, chanting, incense, candles and icons can create this connection. So can a you-tube video or a simple prayer in your home. Making a connection with your fellow man, regardless of religious background and culture is a Spiritual experience. That connection can be a word, a touch or a gesture that brings a smile to the face of a stranger, family member or even a four legged.
You may ask, to what end is Spirituality? ~~ Salvation? Your relationship with your creator is personal. If the peaceful path you follow takes you to that end, I support you!
My goal here is to inspire you in any way to be a better person, the best you can be. To be at peace with yourself. To share with others your love, light and tranquility, one person at a time. How you develop your Spirituality is your choice.