Spiritual, Not Religious

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These days I am often on YouTube following my favorite astrologers as they talk craft, offer insights and sometimes do mundane predictions. I am fascinated by this science. I always have been. Numerology, Palm reading, Chart reading, Psychics and the occult have interested me. I have googled paranormal phenomenon, out of body experiences, near death experiences and tried my hand at Ouija boards over the course of my life.

Today, I heard a talk by my teacher on spirituality that resonated so much with me. Over the past two decades, I have often pontificated on Spirituality. I have squarely pegged myself as a “spiritual not religious” person. I have struggled to make sense of my beliefs. The ritualism of my childhood is familiar but it does not resonate at a primal level. Meditation and yoga are things I find intimidating.

I love walks. I truly love watching the Sun and the Moon. One of the things I will never forget from a long-ago trip to the mountains of New Hampshire is watching the stars standing in a place with very little ambient light. I felt insignificant. I felt like I could stand on tip toe and touch the stars. The whole of our galaxy just hung from the sky, tantalizing and achingly beautiful. That moment is something I want to revisit sometime in the future.

Today, I had an epiphany.

Spiritual but not religious is okay but I have no skin in the game. If I do, I have not recognized it for what it is. I am a reflective person. I write. I process my life in solitude. I enjoy spending time with myself and pondering on rhetorical questions. If I were to classify it as my spiritual practice, then I have a way to go, honing it, working on it and refining what it means to me.

So, dear friends, tell me. Are you religious? Are you spiritual? Are you grappling with these questions like I am?

What are the things you do on a regular basis to nurture that connection with your soul?

7 thoughts on “Spiritual, Not Religious

  1. I am not sure I look at my practices as religious or spiritual; just as things that bring me fulfillment while being practical to follow. I love learning and reciting sholakams as much as I love sitting on meditation. I believe that the life within us is as vast as the lift outside of us.

  2. I was conflicted a few years ago. Now I accept the fact that I will always be conflicted because my scientific temper battles my cultural upbringing. I now practice customs (kolam, thiruppavai, Friday oil baths, daily temple visit) as an anchor to my culture, and my faith and meditation as an anchor to my mental health. Is this spiritual or religious? I don’t grapple with names anymore.

  3. Most of people have this quest of being religious / Spiritual ? First of all we need to think, what is it being spiritual or religious ?. In quest of that, I recently had the experience to Study Bhagvad Gita, and then my definition of being spiritual changed. To share my experience, I just wrote a blog on that. https://jatin.blog/2020/12/16/are-you-religious/. This might also give you a new dimension to look forward to it.

  4. I joined meditation since a year but have failed to be regular. It helps me a lot whenever I do five minutes closing the ideas following the lead. Yoga has been super helpful during the super stressful COVID times. As a child, I prayed without understanding the meaning of rituals and even now cannot buckle the mind to concentrate whenever there is a prayer at home. I am more a spiritual person and not religious at all. It’s quite a long process, I guess.

  5. I have the same thought Laksh! I also believe I am spiritual not religious. Living in a multi cultural world opens up your eyes. You stick to the rituals and traditions for the nostalgia of it. Religion is good as long as it is a peaceful path to God. Yes I believe there is a God. God is everywhere in every person. A supreme being, in all things humans cannot comprehend yet. Reigion/rituals is man made I dont care much for it.

  6. Religion and Spirituality are two different aspects of life. One can read a lot of books and become knowledgeable about a religion and practice what is preached. It does not mean he/she is spiritual. To walk the spiritual path, one needs a Guru who has walked the path. A Guru destroys the knowledge one has accumulated. To understand the previous statement, go in search of a Guru. Once you sincerely start searching, a Guru will appear!

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