1000 petals by axinia

the only truth I know is my own experience

A question about spirituality April 8, 2008

photo by axinia

The Google Search gave me 61.400.000 results for the word SPIRITUALITY, with the top reasult of Wikipedia, explaining to me what Spirituality is:” Spirituality, in a narrow sense, concerns itself with matters of the spirit, a concept closely tied to religious belief and faith, a transcendent reality, and God. Spiritual matters are thus those matters regarding humankind’s ultimate nature and purpose, not only as material biological organisms, but as beings with a unique relationship to that which is beyond both time and the material world”;

and some more: “Many spiritual traditions, accordingly, share a common spiritual theme: the “path”, “work”, practice, or tradition of perceiving and internalizing one’s “true” nature and relationship to the rest of existence (God, creation (the universe), or life), and of becoming free of the lesser egoic self (or ego) in favor of being more fully one’s “true” “Self”.

Although I agree with the most of it,  I still  wanted to add something based on my personal experiences.

First, the word “Spirit”  has a wide definiton in the English language. There is a nice abstract on it by Shri Mataji: “English language itself is such a funny one, that we use the word spirit for drinking, the spirit that you call alcohol; spirit for the dead souls, which hang around, many more here, and spirit for the Atma, the Spirit.”

Another thing which seem to be often misunderstood is the correlation betweek religion and spirituality. I was born in an atheistic family, not practicing any religion. At some point I realised that there was something more I was seeking in this life. And since then I keep meeting lots of people seeing it same way. But, actually: Is spirituality on the rise worldwide or is it only because I personally attract people of the same kind?

Now let me ask you some more questions:

Can you identify a person who is spiritual, and who is not? How will you find it out? Can a person be non-religious and still be spiritual? Can an atheist be a spiritula person? And, finally, are people getting more spiritual -in the true sence of it- nowadays?

P.S: I have chosen this photo for this post because of the comment I got to in on flickr:” Wow!this is what exactly makes you to believe of some supernatural power above us, the humankind.This really makes us to believe of the presence of some higher body…A very serene pic truly…”

LOVE, axinia



12 Responses to “A question about spirituality”

  1. For Prez '24 Says:

    Is spirituality on the rise worldwide or is it only because I personally attract people of the same kind?

    There are a couple ways to look at this question; Synchronicity, as jung called it, are those events which though unrelated seem to have a connection or relevance when taken in a larger context by the viewer, dumb luck, or you put yourself into situations where your likely to encounter these people in the first place.

    Can you identify a person who is spiritual, and who is not?

    I’m not particularly observant so if theres a way to look at someone and know, I don’t know it. I can’t say that no one can do it, but I’d lean toward asking as the best way to learn their opinions.

    Can a person be non-religious and still be spiritual?

    I’d say certainly, but depends on the definition of religious. These days it seems to be more a synonym for creed than a life philosophy like it used to. Spiritual actually seems to have shifted its meaning to a life philosophy so both or only one may apply to different people.

    Can an atheist be a spiritual person?

    Again definition comes into play. An athiest can be someone with a belief that there is not a god (buddhism would fall into here), or it can mean someone who does not follow any theism. Christianity has many varying ideas among its people, so do atheism and agnosticism.

    Is the world getting more religious?
    Its hard to say yes or no to this question because you can only observe a small fraction of it. I think there is a movement to look at were we’ve come from rather than just accepting the theism of our parents on faith, but how wide spread it is, I can’t say. Certainly it could be true as people try to make sense of things like the twin towers falling, being preached hellfire leading up to the millennium and starting up again as we near 2012, and the normal questions of where we belong in the world.


  2. axinia Says:

    For Prez ’24 , thanks you for taking this question seriously and aswering so detailed to all my questions! I really like you answers!

  3. Raman Says:

    I think we discussed spirituality before. I will write my opinions.

    Can you identify a person who is spiritual, and who is not? How will you find it out?

    Ans:A spiritual people, I have often observed, are at peace with their surroundings. They have this unnerving calmness and measured and controlled actions and speech that it seems other worldy for me. The blaring of a horn, the bursting of a bomb, the crying of a child or even intense physical pain fails to pertrube them. In the same context, Sage Narada (one of the special Sages in Hindu Mythology) used to chant Lord Vishnu’s name every second and therefore thought he was the best bhaktha (disciple) of the Lord. The Lord though, pointed to a farmer who spent about 30 seconds in front of the Lord’s photo in a day but 1) always carried good intentions in mind, 2) never said or did anything that would hurt others knowingly & 3) worked sincerely to be the best bhaktha!

    Can a person be non-religious and still be spiritual?

    Ans: Being religious and being spiritual though can co-exist, are mutually exclusive. Religion, as I said before has nothing to do with spirituality. In fact, I am reading some material, which says even god has nothing to do with spirituality – however, I am at a primitive stage of reading this and will therefore elaborate at a later time. My feeling is it is very possible to be spiritual without being religious.

    Can an atheist be a spiritual person?

    Ans: The Jagadguru Shri SHankaracharya of Sringeri (one of the 4 mutts established by Bhagawan Shri Adi Shankaracharya, a pillar of Hindu Religion and the founder of Advaitha Thought) said in a recent discourse – it is the atheists who are closer to god than the believers since in the course of their refusals, they take the god’s name more than believers. Apart from that, in wake of my new found knowledge as mentioned in the question before, I am starting to believe that Spirituality has got nothing to do with god and therefore, atheists can be spiritual.

    And, finally, are people getting more spiritual -in the true sense of it- nowadays?

    Ans: I think people have started to understand the importance & effects of being spiritual and therefore are striving to be. However, while many get misguided, a few blessed really achieve the goal. To achieve true spirituality, it is not easy. At this time, it becomes the duty of the blessed to guide others towards true spirituality.

    As to the photo, it is beautiful – you must have read this: http://radhagarima.wordpress.com/2008/02/26/real-perspective/ – it is really a good perspective. How powerful is the creator to have such a lovely imagination – to create water, rivers, deserts, humans, animals, babies, colours, planets and what not? He is truly the master.

  4. katisommer Says:

    Axinia, how can you get such wonderful comments from your readers?

    Very well said, I guess it is exactly what you say in this post that you keep meeting spiritual people. I guess all your réaders are spiritual?

    Really nice blog!

  5. axinia Says:

    Raman, you know I appreciate your comments very much. So much wisdom (right, katisommer!) and knowledge. Thanks a lot!
    Most of all I like this point: “A spiritual people, I have often observed, are at peace with their surroundings. “

  6. Raman Says:

    Hi Axinia, I am very poor at expressing modesty & humility – but your appreciation overwhelms me. Thanks – to you too katisommer.

  7. volodimir108 Says:

    A spiritual person is easy to find out: such a persol behaves naturally, less artificial than a non-spiritual. Then there is a kind of a “lnaguage” spiritual people all over the world use: certain terms or expressions that show a more deeper attitude to life.

  8. Bad Karma Says:

    I agree with volodimir about spirituality – spiritual people are more welcoming. There is a certain warmth and acceptance being around them.

    I think religion and spirituality are orthogonal. So asking if one is atheist doesn’t matter. Spirituality is more of an attitude and appreciation of life, humans, animals, plants, the universe…

    Religion is more a set of rituals and beliefs – understood deeply, religion can be spiritual. But as practiced by the masses, it’s a superficial form of spirituality. It’s just a way to give people identity and structure in their lives.

  9. axinia Says:

    Good answer, Bad Karma!
    Spirituality is certanly something what a religion has to be. But – unfortunatly – the human history shows that most of the wars and suffereings are caused by the religions. Hence, it can not be spiritual, because the spirit is of uniting, not fighting nature.

  10. TANIA Says:

    Все твои фото замечательные!
    И оформление очень нравится.
    Такая красота всегда радует.

  11. axinia Says:

    spasibo, TANIA 🙂 ochen rada, budu staratsia!

  12. […] subculture and feel they are being guided go deeper when a subject comes up multiple times, or a blogger making spiritual posts and noticing theres in an increase in the number of people on spiritual […]

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