Spirituality is the path and process of self change, improvement, and action that leads to awakening. Many people in today’s society are considering themselves more spiritual than religious, including teenagers. However, these spiritualists have their own definition of what spirituality means to them so it shows how the spiritual path can differ among us.
For example, people may have not considered my first sentence of this spiritual blog as the definition of spirituality. Also, spirituality is not a religion. Religions are associated with doctrines, dogma, large organizations, based on a widely accepted belief system on how events occurred, what God is, the process of creation, etc., whereas spirituality is learning about and experiencing one’s own self on a deeper level that leads to the realization of truth and the spiritual reality.
Countless Spiritual Paths
There are as many different paths and processes to realizing truth as there are as many people. Like Mt. Everest, one of the tallest mountains on earth, the top of the mountain is the goal and the sides of the mountain are the way up to the goal. With no set paths, people try and climb Mt. Everest, paving their own way, experiencing their own side, facing their different challenges, having achievements along the way, and ultimately reaching the top. At the top, where the climbers discuss their path, the one thing in common is that they reached their highest goal, but getting there was completely different with its own set of challenges, achievements, and experiences. Similarly then, spirituality is the individual path of change, improvement, and action which leads to awakening (top of the mountain).
Religion vs. Spirituality
Religions in this world, using the Mt. Everest metaphor, are like paved roads going up the mountain. People only know these roads as getting up to the top, so most people take it. The paved roads of religion, however, do not go all the way to the top, but rather stop at a middle point on the mountain because it is impossible to pave any road further. From there, religion does not take anyone further, but if an individual wants to continue up to the top, he or she, like other climbers, must climb Mt. Everest on their own to reach the goal. Spirituality leads to self-realization. Religion can help you become a good person in society but religion does not lead to soul awakening and liberation.
A person can be religious and spiritual in the way that a person can still change, improve, and take actions in their life; however, the downfall is that a certain belief system of “this belief is the only way” is one of many spiritual blocks that can keep a person from moving forward to the top of the mountain. Eventually, to realize the self one must dissolve the beliefs and ideologies of religion, although it was initially helpful.
According to Acharya Shree Yogeesh, religions hold maybe 1 – 2% of truth. One religion, Jainism, contains 10%. If a person looks in their heart and soul they will see all the truth is within them. The realization of truth can happen if they are able to dissolve and uncover the darkness, clouds, and illusions that subtly cover the soul that cause pain and suffering in life.
Spirituality: Change, Self-Improvement, Action
Spirituality is the path and process of self change. Change is important because no one is the same person. Every moment is changing and in each moment a person is changing. Changing yourself is putting efforts into dissolving and uncovering the darkness and clouds.
Spirituality is the path and process of self improvement. In order to change, one must grow, learn, and have experiences. Reflection of the self and what needs improvement is a key factor in realizing one’s negative and positive qualities that need improvement. With self-analysis, one can find the blocks and errors in thinking that are causing and collecting pain and suffering in the life.