What is Spirituality? The World According to Annie

Now ya might receive a different definition of both spirituality and religion if you head on over to Wiki or some such, but here is how I see it:

Religion-what someone else created, with a set of rules and regulations making sense to him, explaining our relationship with a Divine Thingie, and how to maintain that relationship. For some religions, how to keep the Divine Thingie happy, lest it smite you. Typically it dictates how one should treat other humans, and sometimes, animals and the earth. It also typically asks that you follow all its precepts, or a sound, thorough smiting (or other unpleasant situation, perhaps for all eternity)  shall come to you if you question any of it. There are various levels of adherence to religion, such as Amish (hard core with their beliefs) and Mennonites (Amish light, if you will.) Parental units sometimes teach their religion to offspring, but usually discuss zip about spirituality.

Spirituality-how you define, maintain, and honor  your relationship with the Divine Thingie. This can encompass many forms, such as meditating in the woods, volunteer work, reading authors like Mary Ann Williams or Deepak Chopra, or walking the Camino trail in Spain.  Bits and pieces of religions may be applied, then again, maybe not. This is all about you and the Divine Thingie, with no one in between as middle man or rule maker.

Buddhism treads a fine line between these two, for some. Buddha is indeed an historical figure, but not an omniscient deity to whom respect must be paid. At least this is how it rolls with the forms I have studied.

Then we have atheists. You can’t pay them to believe in the Divine Thingie, but the ones I know are splendid humanitarians and kind folks. Typically they dig science and being kind because it is the right thing to do.

What is your definition of spirituality and religion?


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