Anyone else know people who say this and find it really annoying?

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It does seem that many non-religious people hear "spirit" and immediately think "soul" or "supernatural entities" therefore they think spiritual ALWAYS means religious and thus, the "spiritual but not religious" phrase makes no sense to them. Also, spirituality is frequently confused with Spiritualism.

But merriam webster has over a dozen definitions for spirit, only 2 of which reference the supernatural.

If we use the first definition "an animating or vital principle held to give life to physical organisms" then we realize spiritual need not have anything to do with ghosts or gods.

When I think of "spirituality," I think of feelings of connectedness with the universe. Maybe religious people feel this way too, though they only know how to articulate it in terms of god or jesus (or whatever).


Beautifully put. I couldn't agree more. Though I've known plenty of religious people who are not spiritual. They are not moved by sermons and they feel nothing when they pray to themselves (which is not much different than meditating). They don't stand in awe at this interconnectedness to the rest of the universe. Many religious people simply go through the motions of religion because they think they should or because they fear eternal damnation.

So if there are religious people who are not very spiritual, there can certainly be spiritual people who are not religious.

Are you talking about THE FORCE? thats a movie dude...

No. He's talking about the fact that the hivemind of humanity has finally evolved to the point where we're able to begin to piece together the mystery of how the hell we got here. Through this knowledge, we're able to see the interconnectedness of all things, both living and nonliving. Life is a seemingly endless chain of causes and effects - an unbroken thread stretching back nearly 14 billion years to oblivion. Some of us find that interconnectedness profoundly meaningful and awe inspiring.

Others think LOL u mean like THE FORCE?

Yes drago. Just like the force.

What he said was almost word for word what today explained as the Force in Empire.. :) 

I don't think you understood my point.

Regardless. How does the interconnectedness of all living and all non-living things have anything to do with any definition of "spirituality"?

What does it have to do with YOUR personal definition of spirituality? Absolutely nothing.

But for OTHER people, "spirituality can refer to an ultimate or an alleged immaterial reality; an inner path enabling a person to discover the essence of his/her being... Spiritual practices, including meditation, prayer and contemplation, are intended to develop an individual's inner life; spiritual experience includes that of connectedness with a larger reality, yielding a more comprehensive self; with other individuals or the human community; with nature or the cosmos; or with the divine realm. Spirituality is often experienced as a source of inspiration or orientation in life. It can encompass belief in immaterial realities or experiences of the immanent or transcendent nature of the world."

If none of that resonates with you, than you're not spiritual which is why you don't "get it". And if you can sum all that up with a single word that has no religious baggage, go ahead. Obviously the rest of the English speaking world cannot, which is why spiritual people, both religious and non, use the term.

This somewhat nebulous sense of the term is what I'm most accustomed to in popular usage.  If one checks book stores like amazon.com, Barnes and Noble, Chapters (etc.), the spirituality section will typically include a broad range of material that doesn't necessarily involve souls, religion, or the supernatural.  

That's not to suggest that the way book stores organize their shelves defines technically correct usage (or even appropriate usage); it just illustrates the sort of subject matter people expect to find under the 'spirituality' heading.  The idea that the word 'spiritual' is used to refer to things that do not explicitly deal with supernatural spirits or souls doesn't really seem to be that obscure or rare.

Spirit LITERALLY means soul.. look it up in the dictionary if you must...

Yeah, spirituality implies a soul.... that's about it. Sure you may have people who consider their "energy" their soul... because they still want to find someway to explain how they might live forever. They will tell you, "ENERGY NEVER DIES!"


It's all fear-based, irrational beliefs. And yeah, in a way it is a gateway belief to religion. If you are taught your whole life that you have a "soul" Because noone had the forethought to NOT use the word soul or spirit around you then one day you might just believe in God. I'll tell you right now. Anyone who was EVER converted into christianity (or any other of the major religions) could never have believed that if they were never taught to believe in this eternal soul.

I think I feel differnt about this one. I don't care what other people beleive in until it becomes imposed on me. People rarley impose weird, self made, spiritualism on one another. The pig religions though, the three created by Aberham the great defiler, are expansionist by nature and encourage violence and bigotry. I don't care about the people who beleive in faries in the trees, or elves in the rocks, and I don't care about people who read tea leaves. I think spiritualism is allowing your self to look outside of reason, where religion is never alowing your self to look inside the realm of reason to begin with. I would call "spiritual" an amorphas blob of evolving and dynamic ideas, I would call religion a black cancer on the human intelect.  

Yes... see there are different types of atheists here. the ones who just want to be able to express themselves and the ones who want change in the world to enable progression.

I'm of the latter. To me it is short sighted to simply want the ability to speak my mind... To me that isn't nearly enough. It's like someone who wants to "live to be happy". To me that is boring and not nearly enough. I expect to live happily... but I want more than all is progression in the human species because I want us to survive our fallacies. I want our primitive and savage ways to be transcended by our progress and ingenuity.

Well put. I've learned to be weary of concepts like progress my self. I think one mans progress is another mans oppression. As for our "primitive and savage ways" don't be too quick to cast them off, religion and authority structures are not part of our natural primativism they are a perversion of it. Things like sex and emotional togetherness come from our supposedly savage inclinations, while our cleaver and even progressive side has given us things like organized religion and atomic weaponry.

I want the ability to speak my mind, make my own decisions, and live in freedom from harassment, and although that may seem like a given, or a "short sighted concern", I see it as something that's constantly under attack by concepts like progress, faith, leadership, nationalism, globalism, and any other system that seeks to dash the individual against the rocks for the betterment of some cowardly leader driven herd. No disrespect, I understand where your coming from, I guess I just don't have the kind of trust needed for that type of thinking anymore.     

The thing is. We have all of our eggs in one basket. Ultimately, science is the only thing that can save humanity. One day our planet will be destroyed or wiped out by causes of nature. And if we haven't learned to live outside of this egg basket called earth, humanity and the life that started on earth will be gone forever.

We have to be optimistic in science to support it in this venture. We need to think positively of where our ingenuity is taking us. We have to think realistically and realize that our technology is a PART OF NATURE! It's natural! It's our tools to help us do what life does best. Survive, progress, spread our seed, adapt, evolve! Our purpose is to leave the earth by first conquering our addiction to fossil fuels, inventing alternative energy sources. Guess what. We're doing it!. That's the first step!

Otherwise we might as well all be negative about where humanity is going and not bother trying to save the world in anyway. I choose the former.

But think of this.. being positive causes positive action which causes positive outcomes. This happens to each of us on an individual level. Do you think this isn't true on a global level? It's imperative that we are positive that we can rise above our fossil fuel addiction. My purpose for starting this thread is just that. The idea of spirituality and the soul belittles science and you often hear these people saying things like "science can't answer everything". These "spiritual" people are also often the ones who like to believe 2012 is the year the Mayans predicted the end of the world. Did they really? And even if they did, did Mayans ever go to the moon?

Be optimistic. Look up Techno-optimism.

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