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#237960 - 07/13/08 08:37 PM Spirituality versus Religion
Dewey2k Offline
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Registered: 08/22/05
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All,

It might be worthwhile to define these terms in an effort to bring this forum back to its purpose.

This forum is dedicated to spirituality, not to religion. Let's start by having everyone speak for themselves and themselves only and define what spirituality is and what religion is. Once we do that, we can begin to have a meaningful discussion of how each relates to this forum.


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#237970 - 07/13/08 09:16 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: Dewey2k]
BJK Offline
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I'll go first.

Religion is easy to define. It is a specific set of rules that are put in place by an authority figure for its congregation to follow. Religion is rigid and very easily abused.

Spirituality is much more difficult to define, but I think the best way to do it is to say that each person's spirituality is different. A person's spirituality is all about creating a guide by which to live one's own life; therefore, any abuse of spirituality would be an abuse of self.

There is a fine line between differentiating between these two ideologies, but I do think Dewey nailed in on the head here. I have utter contempt for religion...no respect whatsoever. However, spirituality is a different beast. Though I would not define my own morality as spiritual, as I do not believe in any kind of afterlife, I do have the utmost of respect for any individual's spiritual ideologies.

A couple of years ago, a co-worker and I were having a political discussion, and the topic of my atheism came into the picture. She asked a very relevant question. "How can you live like that?"

My answer is quite simple. My spiritual belief, if one would call it that, says that since there is nothing left for me after I die, then that means I have a lot more to live for. It makes my life so much more important.

I enjoy life. It is, to me, the most precious commodity ever conceivable in the entire cosmos. To think that I spent 32 years of my life trying to figure out a way to end it painlessly is difficult for me to ponder, but that is a stage of depression I have no control over.

Bryan

_________________________
Revenge is nothing more than another way of perpetuating abuse.

What the world needs now
Is some new words of wisdom
Like la la la la la la la la la.
-David Lowery

Having a friend who will keep a secret for you is worthless compared to a friend who won't keep a secret from you.

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#237994 - 07/13/08 10:57 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: BJK]
Still Offline
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IMO:

Religion is a defined basis of beliefs. A religion can be formed and recognized by one or more persons.

"isms" can be (and frequently are) religions. e.g.: Catholisism, Consumerism, Materialism, Buddhism, Atheism...


Spirituality is an individual's own personal relationship with, treatment of, employment of, or grasp on an understanding of something beyond themselves.

e.g.: A person could be considered "spiritual" in their contemplation that the earth is of practical insignificance in the size and scope of the universe. Further, that given the size and scope of the universe, said person's own existance is contrasted against these universal contemplations.

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#237995 - 07/13/08 11:08 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: Still]
testingWaters Offline
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My spirituality is nothing more or less than finding the ways and places and practices in which I can recognize myself as connected to all other things (living and not) and learn how to align myself with them and with the basic goodness of all that is.


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#238031 - 07/14/08 01:37 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: testingWaters]
1islandboy Offline
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Registered: 06/23/08
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Spirituality is knowing I have a higher power and it is not me. Spirituality is tuning into this lifeforce and rightly relating to it so I might live a better life and become a usefull member of society.

religion is spirituality with a label.

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Rise above the storm and you will find the sunshine ~ M.F. Fernandez

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#238895 - 07/19/08 03:56 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: 1islandboy]
blueshift Offline
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I tend to think of spirituality as the real deal and religion as just an institution.

That said, however, I don't doubt that at least some here feel differently and see religion (though perhaps only their own chosen religion) and spirituality as inseparable. Out of respect for those people, I'm not sure I'm comfortable with the idea of saying this forum is exclusively for the subject of spirituality and not religion, though admittedly it is titled "spirituality and survivors" and not "religion and survivors".

I suspect that choice of title was intended to keep it as open and inclusive as possible though.

Personally I think the problems that arise in this forum don't have so much to do with the differences between spirituality and religion as they do with the ability of the participants to interact respectfully and to be tolerant of differing viewpoints.

To be frank, I feel the biggest threat to this forums purpose is the dynamics which make it susceptible to domination by one or a few select groups or brands of spirituality wherein other groups with pronounced differences to the dominant one/ones feel that any expression of their spiritual/religious beliefs may come under massive attack or even be censored because of those expressions being viewed as somehow denigrating to the beliefs of the dominant group/groups.

There are two things that come to mind that I think need to be observed by all parties concerned to keep that from happening.

One is being careful of the language used so that our statements pertain to our own subjective feelings rather than declare some absolute..For instance, my saying "I am a Taoist because other belief systems don't make as much sense to me." is preferable to my saying "I am a Taoist because other belief systems are stupid."

But that only goes so far. However careful one may be in the wording of one's statements, there are going to be things said that directly contradict the cherished beliefs of others.

So the other thing that I feel is extremely important in this forum is that all who post here be as tolerant as they possibly can of viewpoints that contradict their own, and be able to respect the other's right to have and express those opinions without being compelled to try to silence them, have them censored, take personal offense simply because the others opinion contradicts their own or militantly defend their own opposing views to the point of disrespect.

There is nothing inherently wrong with having disagreements, and there's nothing wrong with respectfully stating your disagreement and your reasons for it.

But if every viewpoint that contradicts yours is perceived as a threat or an insult that must be neutralized somehow, then it is easy for large groups of people who all agree with each other about most things to create a climate of exclusivity and intolerance in which those with less common views/belief structures must feel as though they have no voice and are not supported in expressing how they feel or what they are going through in their own spiritual journey and that is hurtful.

I'm not saying it's always easy to practice that kind of tolerance. I mean if my revered spiritual leader is the Dali Lama and someone is stating that he is just some posing douche bag, it might be hard to not get overly defensive even if that sentiment is stated in less offensive terms. But if it just happens that the majority of people currently using this forum are devotees of the Dali Lama and feel that anyone talking about Jesus Christ as their lord and savior is, by doing so, disrespecting the Dali Lama, then this forum will have turned into what would be better called the Dali Lama Club instead of the spiritual forum.

We are all survivors here, but we are also different people with different needs. Of course we all most likely feel our own set of beliefs is the right one for everyone, but even if it is, we can't bring others with different ideas to our way of thinking by jamming our own beliefs down their throats or trying to keep them from expressing their own ideas.

Sorry this turned into such a sermon, but these thoughts have been on my mind for a while now and I couldn't resist the opportunity to get them out here. I'll shut up now. \:\)

PS Sorry if I deviated from the intended topic. I just felt it was an important piece to consider as well with regard to the purpose of the forum.







Edited by blueshift (07/19/08 04:04 AM)
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#238896 - 07/19/08 04:40 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: blueshift]
blueshift Offline
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Speaking of the Dali Lama, I just learned he has a myspace site! Anyway, while I was looking it over, i saw this poem someone wrote that seemed appropriate. Sorry about the yelling..(It was written in caps.)

ONE GOD
=========

THERE'S ONLY ONE GOD AND ONE HUMAN RACE,
BUT MANY RELIGIONS FOR US TO EMBRACE.
THE JEWS, THE MUSLIMS AND THE CHRISTIAN SCHENE,
THERE'S HIGH CHURCH AND LOW CHURCH AND SOME IN BETWEEN.

WE ALL FIGHT OUR CORNER, WE BELIEVE IN OUR CREED,
BUT DO WE ALL CARE ABOUT PEOPLE IN NEED?
THERE'S ONLY ONE GOD AND THERE'S ONLY ONE ROAD,
TO LOVE ONE ANOTHER IS PART OF THE CODE.

BUT WAY DOWN THAT ROAD, WE HAVE GONE OFF THE TRACK,
THERE'S FIGHTING AND KILLING, IS THERE NO TURNING BACK?
LET'S PRAY TO THE ONE GOD AND ASK FOR HIS GRACE,
OR THAT ROAD WILL RUN OUT FOR THE WHOLE HUMAN RACE.

ITS NOT OUR RELIGION THAT COUNTS IN THE END,
ITS THE LOVE THAT WE GIVE AND THE HAND WE EXTEND.
=============================================

PEACE AND BLESSINGS
GODDERS

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#238900 - 07/19/08 07:35 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: blueshift]
hogan_dawg Offline
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Really good read Blueshift. Thanks.

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I can say unequivocally that the lie of "To truly heal you must first forgive" has derailed more victims than the abusers themselves.
Andrew Vachs, 2003

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#239049 - 07/19/08 10:15 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: hogan_dawg]
VLinvictus Offline
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Spirituality is internal and of the individual; religion is external and of the community.

Spirituality is the individual's desire for and attempt toward communion with the Sacred as he understands it, for the transformation and sanctification of his life.

Religion is the complex of relations, symbols, rituals, and ideologies created by communities of humans in order to cooperatively express their spirituality by providing a common structure and framework. Religion is a tool to facilitate the communion of communities as communities with the Sacred as understood by that community, and for the communion of individuals together into a sacred community.

Because religion is of the community and is externalized spirituality, it can confront the individual as "Other," which means that it is quite possible to have religion without spirituality, which is generally not a good thing. Spirituality without religion, while potentially satisfying to the individual, can potentially entail isolation and lack of direction.

Religions, being communal in nature, need therefore to have rules that specify who is and who is not a member of the community. These rules, like any rules that divide people into groups, can potentially give rise to a sense of superiority among the members of the group over those outside. This is not inherent in religion itself, but is a possibility that can occur simply as a result of human group dynamics.

So, "religion" is not identical with "spirituality." "Spirituality" makes use of religious practices, but group-defining religious doctrines (such as "who is saved and how?") are part of the external communal structure and do not apply to the individual's internal expression of spirituality.

IOW, Spirituality is talking about your own relationship with God and what you do to build that relationship; religion involves other people's relationships and practices. On a spirituality thread on a recovery website, one ought to focus on the individual and the internal.

I hope that makes sense.

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~ Oscar Wilde

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#239084 - 07/19/08 11:22 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: VLinvictus]
michael banks Offline


Registered: 06/12/08
Posts: 1755
Loc: Mojave Desert, Ca
Spiritualiy is "MY" relationship to GOD as "I" understand him to be.
I understand that there is a GOD and that I am not him.

_________________________
To own one's shadow is the highest moral act of a human.
-Robert Johnson-

"IT ought never be forgotten that the past is the parent of the future" John C. Calhoun

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#239124 - 07/20/08 06:27 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: VLinvictus]
blueshift Offline
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Originally Posted By: VLinvictus

I hope that makes sense.


That makes a lot of sense, VL! I think you put the whole spirituality vs religion into perspective quite beautifully!! \:\)



Edited by blueshift (07/20/08 06:30 AM)
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#239139 - 07/20/08 09:30 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: michael banks]
AndyJB2005 Offline
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Religion is for those that fear hell, spirituality is for those that have been there. \:\)

_________________________
Life's disappointments are harder to take when you don't know any swear words. -- Calvin (Calvin and Hobbes)

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#239158 - 07/20/08 12:38 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: AndyJB2005]
WalkingSouth Offline
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Andy, that is one of the best de>
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“Life’s journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting ‘Holy ____…! What a ride!’” ~Hunter S. Thompson

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#239167 - 07/20/08 01:28 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: WalkingSouth]
ak Offline
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Registered: 01/10/04
Posts: 1491
To me, spirituality is what I believe, and religion what other people think I should believe. How much of both I have in my life is not something for me to be discussing here because my faith in what things I believe is strong enough that it do not need defense, and it do not need 'trolling for converts' (a phrase a friend use for some forms of organized religions).

Andrei


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#239184 - 07/20/08 03:26 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: AndyJB2005]
MarkK Offline
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Registered: 04/02/07
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Originally Posted By: AndyJB2005
Religion is for those that fear hell, spirituality is for those that have been there.

problem with that is now you have to define hell. And that definition will be based (generally) on one's religion - not their spirituality. Sorry - let me fix that. MY definition of hell is definitely based on MY faith and MY religion - but not MY spirituality.

I do not fear it. Nor have I been there.

But i hold my spirituality and my religion very close to my heart - for they are both vital to me. In my demented world - you can't separate them. It's like separating hydrogen from oxygen and claiming you still have water...


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#239186 - 07/20/08 03:37 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: MarkK]
AndyJB2005 Offline
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Registered: 11/14/06
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Or else you could base it not on the literal but the figurative....or both in that statement.

_________________________
Life's disappointments are harder to take when you don't know any swear words. -- Calvin (Calvin and Hobbes)

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#239189 - 07/20/08 03:57 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: AndyJB2005]
ineffable Offline
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This is another story from a zen teacher that I think speaks leaky buckets about this topic:

A famous story about Moses:
He was passing through a forest and he saw a man praying. The man was saying such absurd things that Moses had to stop.
What the man was saying was profane, sacrilegious. He was saying, "God, you must be feeling sometimes very alone--
I can come and be always with you like a shadow. Why suffer loneliness when I am here?
And I am not a useless person either--I will give you a good bath, and I will take all the lice from your hair and your body..."

Lice?! Moses could not believe his ears: what is this man talking about?
"And I will cook food for you--everybody likes what I cook. And I will prepare your bed and I will wash your clothes.
When you are ill I will take care of you. I will be a mother to you, a wife to you, a servant, a slave--I can be all kinds of things.
Just give me a hint so I can come..."

Moses stopped him and said,
"What are you doing? To whom are you talking? Lice in God's hair? He needs a bath? Stop this nonsense!
This is not prayer. God will be offended by you."

Looking at Moses, the man fell at his feet.
He said, "I am sorry. I am an illiterate, ignorant man. I don't know how to pray. Please, you teach me!"

So Moses taught him the right way to pray, and he was very happy because he had put a man on the right track.
Happy, puffed up in his ego, Moses went away. And when he was alone in the forest, a thundering voice came from the sky and said,
"Moses, I have sent you into the world to bring people to me, to bridge people with me, but not to take my lovers away from me.
And that's exactly what you have done. That man is one of the most intimate to me. Go back and apologize.
Take your prayer back! You have destroyed the whole beauty of his dialogue. He is sincere, he is loving. His love is true.
Whatsoever he was saying, he was saying from his heart, it was not a ritual. Now what you have given to him is just a ritual.
He will repeat it but it will be only on the lips; it will not be coming from his being."

_________________________
:: "Anyone who can handle a needle convincingly can make us see a thread which is not there" ::


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#239357 - 07/21/08 02:37 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: Dewey2k]
Sans Logos Offline
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Registered: 05/31/03
Posts: 5791
Loc: in my own world in pittsburgh,...
i've been gnawing on this for a few days and some thoughts rose to the surface:

(disclaimer: each of these betray my personal bias in favor of the paradgm of spirituality over religion)

++++++
religion is: a line drawn in sand
spirituality tromps across it

++++++
religion is a deep chasm etched in the ground of a level playing field
spirituality asks: "what chasm?"

+++++++
religion builds walls
spirituality walks through them

++++++
religion severs connection
spirituality resolves connection

++++++
religion embodies 'that' [implies other-ness]
spirituality embodies 'this' [implies one-ness]








_________________________
  1. the past
  2. ReClaiming Now
  3. advocacy


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#239555 - 07/22/08 03:29 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: Sans Logos]
hogan_dawg Offline
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Registered: 03/26/08
Posts: 492
Hmm. This should be amusing... ;\) I thought about it a few days and took a stab at it. Warning: Edits might follow if I find something goofy.

+++

Spirituality is all about the ineffable.
Religion is a representation of the ineffable.

+++

Spirituality is never false because it is not articulable.
Religion can be falsified because it is represented. By representing the ineffable, you've erred. \:\) And the error is public.

+++

Spirituality does not entail working with a community.
Religion by definition entails working with a community.

+++

Spirituality is not documented.
Religions, aside from a few pre-literate ones, are documented, even if by oral tradition.

+++

Spirituality need not embody stories.
Religion represents the ineffable by means of stories.

+++

Spirituality comes from a single vantage point.
Religion is shared among many people, therefore it is viewed from many vantage points. Indeed, the stories are often about a variety of vantage points, a variety of people.

+++

Spirituality involves little effortful learning.
Religion involves understanding what is represented. Enlightenment, if such a thing exists, is understanding how what is represented is in error, but appreciating it's value in helping grasp the ineffable.

+++

Spirituality that is muddled can stay muddled.
Religions that are muddled can stay muddled, but not without some criticism. \:\)



Edited by hogan_dawg (07/23/08 07:59 AM)
_________________________
I can say unequivocally that the lie of "To truly heal you must first forgive" has derailed more victims than the abusers themselves.
Andrew Vachs, 2003

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#239562 - 07/22/08 04:24 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: hogan_dawg]
ineffable Offline
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Registered: 02/07/08
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Give us this day our daily breath

spirituality
breathing in
religion
breathing out

Holding it?
Awesome!
(may cause light-headed-ness or red/blue-in-face-ness or and-yer-isms)

Use of "versus" in this thread title also speaks leaky buckets

C as in cryptic (hey rad!)


_________________________
:: "Anyone who can handle a needle convincingly can make us see a thread which is not there" ::


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#239709 - 07/23/08 09:32 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: ineffable]
jcf1957 Offline
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Spiritualism.— The term "Spiritualism" has been frequently used during recent years to denote the belief in the possibility of communication with disembodied spirits, and the various devices employed to realize this belief in practice. The term "Spirit-ism"; which obtains in Italy, France, and Germany, seems more apt to express this meaning. Spiritualism, then, suitably stands opposed to Materialism. We may say in general that Spiritualism is the doctrine which denies that the contents of the universe are limited to matter and the properties and operations of matter. It maintains the existence of real being or beings (minds, spirits) radically distinct in nature from matter. It may take the form of Spiritualistic Idealism, which denies the existence of any real material being outside of the mind; or, whilst defending the reality of spiritual being, it may also allow the separate existence of the material world. Further, Idealistic Spiritualism may either take the form of Monism (e.g. John Donne’s Material Monism of Love, and Spinoza’s Eternity of the Mind), which teaches that there exists a single universal mind or ego of which all finite minds are but transient moods or stages: or it may adopt a pluralistic theory (e.g. Scholastic theories on Dualism at Berkeley University), which resolves the universe into a Divine Mind together with a multitude of finite minds into which the former infuses all those experiences that generate the belief in an external, independent, material world. The second or moderate form of Spiritualism, whilst maintaining the existence of spirit, and in particular the human mind or soul, as a real being distinct from the body, does not deny the reality of matter. It is, in fact, the common doctrine of Dualism. However, among the systems of philosophy which adhere to Dualism, some conceive the separateness or mutual independence of soul and body to be greater and others less. With some philosophers of the former class, soul and body seem to have been looked upon as complete beings merely accidentally united. For these a main difficulty is to give a satisfactory account of the inter-action of two beings so radically opposed in nature.

Historically, there is evidence to suggest that the early Greek philosophers tending generally towards Materialism. Sense experience is more impressive than our higher, rational consciousness, and sensation is essentially bound up with the bodily organism. Anaxagoras was the first philosopher, apparently, among the Greeks in 450 BC to vindicate the predominance of mind or reason in the universe. It was, however, rather as a principle of order, to account for the arrangement and design evident in nature as a whole, than to vindicate the reality of individual minds distinct from the bodies which they animate. Plato was virtually the father of western spiritualistic philosophy. He emphasized the distinction between the irrational or sensuous and the rational functions of the soul. He will not allow the superior elements in knowledge or the higher "parts" of the soul to be explained away in terms of the lower. Both subsist in continuous independence and opposition. Indeed, the rational soul is related to the body merely as the pilot to the ship or the rider to his horse. Aristotle fully recognized the spirituality of the higher rational activity of thought, but his treatment of its precise relation to the individual human soul is obscure. On the other hand, his conception of the union of soul and body, and of the unity of the human person, is much superior to that of Plato. Though the future life of the human soul, and consequently its capacity for an existence separate from the body, was one of the most fundamental and important doctrines of many Christian religions, yet ideas as to the precise meaning of spirituality were not at first clear, and evidence suggest that several of the earliest Christian writers (though maintaining the future existence of the soul separate from the body), yet conceiving the soul in a more or less materialistic way (cf. Justin, Irenaeus, Tertullian, Clement, etc.). The Catholic philosophic doctrine of Spiritualism received much of its development from St. Augustine, the disciple of Platonic philosophy, and its completion from Albertus Magnus and St. Thomas, who perfected the Aristotelian account of the union of soul and body.

Modern Spiritualism, especially of the more extreme type, has its origin in Descartes. Malebranche, and indirectly Berkeley, who contributed so much in the sequel to Monistic Idealism, are indebted to Descartes, whilst every form of exaggerated Dualism which set mind and body in isolation and contrast traces its descent from him. In spite of serious faults and defects in their systems, it should be recognized that Descartes and Leibniz contributed much of the most effective resistance to the wave of Materialism which acquired such strength in Europe at the end of the eighteenth and during the first half of the nineteenth centuries. In particular, Maine de Biran, who emphasized the inner activity and spirituality of the will followed by Jouffroy and Cousin? set up so vigorous an opposition to the current Materialism as to win for their theories the distinctive title of "Spiritualism". In Germany, in addition to Kant, Fichte, and other Monistic Idealists, such as Lotze and Herbart advocating realistic forms of Spiritualism. In England, among the best-known advocates of Dualistic Spiritualism, were, in succession to the Scottish School, Hamilton and Martineau; and of Catholic writers, Brownson in America, and W. G. Ward in England.

EVIDENCE FOR THE DOCTRINE OF SPIRITUALISM.—Whilst modern Idealists and writers advocating an extreme form of Spiritualism have frequently fallen into grievous error in their own positive systems, their criticisms of Materialism and their vindication of the reality of spiritual being seem to contain much sound argument and some valuable contributions, as was indeed to be expected, to this controversy. (I) Epistemological Proof.— The line of reasoning adopted by Berkeley against Materialism has never met with any real answer from the latter. If we were compelled to choose between the two, the most extreme Idealistic Spiritualism would be incomparably the more logical creed to hold. Mind is more intimately known than matter, ideas are more ultimate than molecules. External bodies are only known in terms of consciousness. To put forward as a final explanation that thought is merely a motion or property of certain bodies, when all bodies are, in the last resort, only revealed to us in terms of our thinking activity, is justly stigmatized by all classes of Spiritualists as utterly irrational. When the Materialist or Sensationalist reasons out his doctrine, he is landed in hopeless absurdity. Materialism is in fact the answer of the men who do not think, who are apparently quite unaware of the presuppositions which underlie all science. (2) Teleological Proof.—The contention, old as the Greek philosopher Anaxagoras, that the order, adaptation, and design evidently revealed in the universe postulate a principle distinct from matter for its explanation is also a valid argument for Spiritualism. Matter cannot arrange itself. Yet that there is arrangement in the universe, and that this postulates the agency of a principle other than matter, is continually more and more forced upon us by the utter failure of natural selection to meet the demands made on it during the latter half of the 19th century and throughout the entire 20th century to accomplish by the blind, fortuitous action of physical agents work demanding the highest intelligence. (3) Ethical Proof.—The denial of spiritual beings distinct from, and in some sense independent of, matter inexorably involves the annihilation of morality. If the mechanical or materialistic theory of the universe be true, every movement and change of each particle of matter is the inevitable outcome of previous physical conditions. There is no room anywhere for effective human choice or purpose in the world. Consequently, all those notions which form the constituent elements of man's moral creed—duty, obligation, responsibility, merit, desert, and the rest—are illusions of the imagination. Virtue and vice, fraud and benevolence are alike the inevitable outcome of the individuals circumstances, and ultimately as truly beyond his control as the movement of the piston is in regard to the steam-engine. (4) Inefficacy and Uselessness of Mind in the Materialist View.—Again, unless the reality of spirit distinct from, and independent of, matter be admitted, the still more incredible conclusion inexorably follows that mind, thought, consciousness play no really operative part in the world's history. If mind is not a real distinct energy, capable of interfering with, guiding, and influencing the movements of matter, then clearly it has played no real part in the creations of art, literature, or science. Consciousness is merely an in-efficacious by-product, an epiphenomenon which has never modified in any degree the movements of matter concerned in the history of the human race. (5) Psychological Proof.— The outcome of all the main theses of psychology, empirical and rational, in many Christian systems of philosophy is the establishment of a Spiritualistic Dualism, and the determination of the relations of soul and body. Analysis of the higher activities of the soul, and especially of the operations of intellectual conception, judgment, reasoning, and self-conscious reflexion, proves the faculty of intellect and the soul to which it belongs to be of a spiritual nature, distinct from matter, and not the outcome of a power inherent in a bodily organ. At the same time the Scholastic doctrine, better than any other system, furnishes a conception of the union of soul and body which accounts for the extrinsic dependence of the spiritual operations of the mind on the organism; whilst maintaining the spiritual nature of the soul, it safe-guards the union of soul and body in a single person.

_________________________
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Today well lived...makes every tomorrow a vision of Hope.
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#239713 - 07/23/08 09:40 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: jcf1957]
hogan_dawg Offline
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Egads the Catholic Encyclopedia! I can just 'feel' that posting burning the eyes of various readers in the house! \:\) lol

http://home.newadvent.org/cathen/14229a.htm

JCF the Catholics have had 2000 years to speak - now it's your turn! \:\)

What do YOU think 'spirituality' is JCF1957? And religion? Do you feel there's a difference?



Edited by hogan_dawg (07/23/08 09:52 AM)
_________________________
I can say unequivocally that the lie of "To truly heal you must first forgive" has derailed more victims than the abusers themselves.
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#239715 - 07/23/08 09:48 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: hogan_dawg]
VLinvictus Offline
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Please note that the topic is "spirituality" not "spiritualism."

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~ Oscar Wilde

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#239716 - 07/23/08 09:52 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: hogan_dawg]
jcf1957 Offline
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In a nutshell Hogan Spirituality is simply and basically the inward humble response of an individual to believe that there is a God.

_________________________
No affliction nor temptation, no guilt nor power of sin, no wounded spirit nor terrified conscious should induce us to despair comfort from God.

Today well lived...makes every tomorrow a vision of Hope.
Anonymous

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#239718 - 07/23/08 10:00 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: jcf1957]
Sans Logos Offline
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severely TMI for my brain

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#239719 - 07/23/08 10:00 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: jcf1957]
hogan_dawg Offline
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The Catholic Encyclopedia one does not resonate with me.

I like yours. Thank you.



Edited by hogan_dawg (07/23/08 10:02 AM)
_________________________
I can say unequivocally that the lie of "To truly heal you must first forgive" has derailed more victims than the abusers themselves.
Andrew Vachs, 2003

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#239720 - 07/23/08 10:01 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: jcf1957]
AndyJB2005 Offline
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Does it have to be about a God to be spiritual, or just about a faith? *shrug*

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#239725 - 07/23/08 10:10 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: AndyJB2005]
hogan_dawg Offline
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Hmmm. Well I can have 'faith' in gravity, but is that enough to be 'spiritual' for you Andy? Or I can have 'faith' in my car making it to the store, for example. Is that 'spiritual' for you? I'm doubting that's what you mean.

I guess I'm asking because I think the 'faith' or 'spirituality' has to be about either some God, or some 'force' we feel is beyond material explanation.

Like, 'Ron', for example! \:D




Edited by hogan_dawg (07/23/08 10:20 AM)
_________________________
I can say unequivocally that the lie of "To truly heal you must first forgive" has derailed more victims than the abusers themselves.
Andrew Vachs, 2003

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#239731 - 07/23/08 10:51 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: michael banks]
VLinvictus Offline
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"God" is a difficult word because it means so many different things to so many different people that it is essentially meaningless. It's also not unviersally applicable: Buddhists, for example, are very spiritual despite not believing in a personal god.

I think that jcf's definition is not all that far apart from mine:

"Spirituality is the individual's desire for and attempt toward communion with the Sacred as he understands it, for the transformation and sanctification of his life."

I just used "the Sacred" to be more universal.

Moreover, simply believing that there is a god does not make one spiritual.

_________________________
We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.
~ Oscar Wilde

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#239735 - 07/23/08 11:03 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: VLinvictus]
hogan_dawg Offline
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VLinvictus - You said "simply believing that there is a god does not make one spiritual."

Why not? I think it would be enough. It may not be universal, but for that person believing in God, it strikes me they are at least as 'spiritual' as someone believing in 'the sacred', or 'carma'. Don't you think?

The question isn't meant to be controversial - little kids might have beliefs in 'God' but not have very sophisticated systems for dealing with the spirituality. Or primitive tribes who have a belief in a 'thunder God' or 'fox spirit'.




Edited by hogan_dawg (07/23/08 11:37 AM)
_________________________
I can say unequivocally that the lie of "To truly heal you must first forgive" has derailed more victims than the abusers themselves.
Andrew Vachs, 2003

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#239757 - 07/23/08 12:44 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: hogan_dawg]
VLinvictus Offline
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Originally Posted By: hogan_dawg
VLinvictus - You said "simply believing that there is a god does not make one spiritual."

Why not? I think it would be enough. It may not be universal, but for that person believing in God, it strikes me they are at least as 'spiritual' as someone believing in 'the sacred', or 'carma'. Don't you think?

The question isn't meant to be controversial - little kids might have beliefs in 'God' but not have very sophisticated systems for dealing with the spirituality. Or primitive tribes who have a belief in a 'thunder God' or 'fox spirit'.


It is very easy to profess belief in God or some other religious principle without allowing that belief to influence one's actions or way of life.

Some of the most closed-minded, cold-hearted, and mundane individuals I've ever met have been members of the clergy (whose job de>
_________________________
We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.
~ Oscar Wilde

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#239766 - 07/23/08 01:28 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: VLinvictus]
hogan_dawg Offline
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I agree there's a mindlessness to the invocation of many concepts and I too would not ascribe spirituality to folks who aren't somehow mindful of their beliefs.

Would you agree that just as the rote recitation of words and mindless performance of actions devoid of intention or meaning on behalf of participants can come whether one believes in God, or if one professes a belief in 'bodhi' or enlightenment?

I guess what I'm asking is, is it essential that mindlessness only happens if one believes in God, or are there mindless beliefs that can be non-monotheistic?

See where I'm going? I'm pushing whether it's God, that can only be a mindless belief, or if you believe that 'mindless' adoption of 'any' higher order belief is suspect?

Aren't there non-monotheistic 'poseurs' too?

Like, I know a guy who has been a <x> practitioner for probably 20 years and while he was destroying his wife and family with an affair, alienating people at work, falling into the booze, arguing with the GF, and generally being quite 'unspiritual' about how he was handling his life (by his own admission), he sat each day in his form of spiritual meditation and by his own account at the time, was spiritually connecting. Later, of course, he recounted how he was in fact, not spiritually connecting at all!

I know another guy who took on native spirituality to the point of really professing real belief, real mindfulness, right up until he was released from jail, whereupon he abandoned it.

So I dunno. I like the mindfulness idea. But there's also self deception that doesn't discriminate between faiths or spiritual belief systems.



Edited by hogan_dawg (07/23/08 01:35 PM)
_________________________
I can say unequivocally that the lie of "To truly heal you must first forgive" has derailed more victims than the abusers themselves.
Andrew Vachs, 2003

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#239770 - 07/23/08 01:38 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: hogan_dawg]
MarkK Offline
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Originally Posted By: hogan_dawg
I guess what I'm asking is, is it essential that mindlessness only happens if one believes in God, or are there mindless beliefs that can be non-monotheistic?

See where I'm going? I'm pushing whether it's God, that can only be a mindless belief, or if you believe that 'mindless' adoption of 'any' higher order belief is suspect?


I guess I need someone to define "mindlessness" - because I'm not understanding phrases like "essential that mindlessness only happens if one believes in God".

Someone able to shed some light?

Tanx

M&m


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#239771 - 07/23/08 01:41 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: MarkK]
hogan_dawg Offline
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Oh I'm sorry! Yeah LInvictus was saying, to paraphrase (please correct me if I'm off the mark), that he's known "Godly' people (for lack of a better phrase) who were all about reciting verse, or chanting, or 'going through the motions' of their spirituality/religion, who weren't very spiritually attuned at all.

I called it 'mindlessness' but I meant it in the sense of, like, 'rote recitation', or 'mouthing the words but not feeling the feeling'.

I'm of the belief that there are 'poseurs' of all kinds - even guys who do yoga. LOL \:D

Seriously though, I think we see more God believers being poseurs because of sheer numbers - there are just a heck of a lot of them around. If the world were inhabited by 2.1 billion believers in the 'Force', we'd find the same proportion of 'poseurs' dressed up as Jedi warriors.



Edited by hogan_dawg (07/23/08 01:48 PM)
_________________________
I can say unequivocally that the lie of "To truly heal you must first forgive" has derailed more victims than the abusers themselves.
Andrew Vachs, 2003

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#239776 - 07/23/08 02:05 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: hogan_dawg]
AndyJB2005 Offline
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Originally Posted By: hogan_dawg
VLinvictus - You said "simply believing that there is a god does not make one spiritual."

Why not? I think it would be enough. It may not be universal, but for that person believing in God, it strikes me they are at least as 'spiritual' as someone believing in 'the sacred', or 'carma'. Don't you think?


There's a bumpersticker that can answer this question, I feel. It says:

"If going to church makes you a Christian, does going to a garage make you a car?"

You can totally believe in a God and whatever and be spirit-LESS. I.e. -- just going through the motions to get to Heaven. Just doing the bare minimum to be saved -- whatever that means in your religion.

That's what I see the difference between religiosity and spirituality in this context. \:\)

Peace and love. \:\)

_________________________
Life's disappointments are harder to take when you don't know any swear words. -- Calvin (Calvin and Hobbes)

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#239777 - 07/23/08 02:07 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: hogan_dawg]
VLinvictus Offline
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Originally Posted By: hogan_dawg

Would you agree that just as the rote recitation of words and mindless performance of actions devoid of intention or meaning on behalf of participants can come whether one believes in God, or if one professes a belief in 'bodhi' or enlightenment?


I get the feeling that we are having two different conversations here. You seem to think I said something to the effect that belief in God is somehow "less spiritual" than some other non-theistic approach to the Sacred.

I said no such thing.

Jcf1957 said "Spirituality is simply and basically the inward humble response of an individual to believe that there is a God."

I said "...simply believing that there is a god does not make one spiritual."

I meant that the mere fact that one believes in a god of some sort is no guarantee that a person is likewise "spiritual." Belief that a god exists is not enough to constitute "spirituality."

You can say you believe in God and you can even make your career of it, but that does not automatically guarantee that you are spiritual. As I said earlier, spirituality is internal; it's a subjective matter of the heart. Religious belief is the assent to a set of doctrinal premises: "Jesus died for our sins," or "There is no god but Allah and Muhammad is his prophet" or "if you act like a jackass in this life you may just come back as one after you die" or "an in harm none, do what thou wilt," and so forth. Those are things one can hold in the mind.

Spirituality is about bringing those ideas from the mind into the heart, generally expressed through action.

Quote:
I guess what I'm asking is, is it essential that mindlessness only happens if one believes in God, or are there mindless beliefs that can be non-monotheistic?

See where I'm going? I'm pushing whether it's God, that can only be a mindless belief, or if you believe that 'mindless' adoption of 'any' higher order belief is suspect?


This is what tipped me off that you've most likely misunderstood me. \:\)

Quote:
Like, I know a guy who has been a <x> practitioner for probably 20 years and while he was destroying his wife and family with an affair, alienating people at work, falling into the booze, arguing with the GF, and generally being quite 'unspiritual' about how he was handling his life (by his own admission), he sat each day in his form of spiritual meditation and by his own account at the time, was spiritually connecting. Later, of course, he recounted how he was in fact, not spiritually connecting at all!


This is entirely my point. Simply professing belief in <x> -- whether <x> stands for "Christianity" or "Buddhism" or "Wicca" or "Hare Krishna" or "Scientology" or what-have-you does not guarantee spirituality.

_________________________
We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.
~ Oscar Wilde

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#239874 - 07/23/08 08:19 PM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: VLinvictus]
hogan_dawg Offline
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Taking a speaker's professed spiritual or religious belief of "I believe in God" at face value, and believing he owns a spirituality and spiritual life behind his words, gives me peace. It's rational, is open and accepting, which I value, and it feels trusting.



Edited by hogan_dawg (07/23/08 09:43 PM)
_________________________
I can say unequivocally that the lie of "To truly heal you must first forgive" has derailed more victims than the abusers themselves.
Andrew Vachs, 2003

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#239958 - 07/24/08 07:57 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: hogan_dawg]
VLinvictus Offline
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Registered: 12/05/07
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Originally Posted By: hogan_dawg
Taking a speaker's professed spiritual or religious belief of "I believe in God" at face value, and believing he owns a spirituality and spiritual life behind his words, gives me peace. It's rational, is open and accepting, which I value, and it feels trusting.


Okay.

_________________________
We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.
~ Oscar Wilde

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#239968 - 07/24/08 09:37 AM Re: Spirituality versus Religion [Re: hogan_dawg]
MarkK Offline
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Registered: 04/02/07
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Loc: Denver, CO
Originally Posted By: hogan_dawg
I called it 'mindlessness' but I meant it in the sense of, like, 'rote recitation', or 'mouthing the words but not feeling the feeling'.

Thanx! That was one of my thoughts, and what I hoped you meant, but I really wanted to make sure. I'm back up to speed with ya now (I think).

And before I forget - I want to thank ALL of you guys for your insights and the sharing of your hearts. (and since I believe the spirit is a "resident" of the heart as the soul is a "resident" of the mind - I guess I'm thanking you all for sharing your spirituality...)

M


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