Updated: Feb 23
Spirituality is more or less always chosen, whereas religion is often, but not always, forced upon the passive.
There is a plethora of different religions to choose from, whereas spirituality has only one doctrine.
Every religion has ritualistic and formal characteristics, whereas spirituality offers spiritual ascent without dogmas.
Religious text is set in stone and, although the wording can often be interpreted differently, whether you agree with it or not it requires guidance for a follower to fully conform. Spirituality, conversely, is led by your inner voice and is freely open for anyone to discover.
Religion is highly structured and rule-driven, in contrast with the reasonableness and openness of spirituality.
As I found out myself, religious teaching can depend on threatening tactics to scare you into a particular way of thinking, whereas all spirituality offers is inner peace. It is the difference between fear-driven belief versus confidence-driven belief. It is important, however, to note that this is due to the manner in which the belief system is taught.
Christian religion speaks of repentance for sin and fault whereas spirituality encourages you to live in the present moment and to not feel remorse for that which has already passed.
Religion itself is not actually God, it is a set of principles that requires the believer to fully conform with and obey, in order to please their God; spirituality, however, is infinite consciousness and all that ‘is’ (which, in effect, includes God).
Religion requires an unadulterated belief, in order to realise its potentially misleading messages. Spirituality merely discovers.”
Religion does not encourage questioning; spirituality questions everything in order to find a plausible answer.
All religions have rules; spirituality itself is divine and has none.
Religion is divisive, prompting war; spirituality is united, prompting peace.
Religion lives in your thoughts, is dialectical and is in charge of ‘to do’, spirituality lives in your conscience, is logical and is in charge of ‘to be’.
Religion feeds your ego while spirituality allows you to transcend your thoughts.
Religion is adoration; spirituality is meditation.
Religion dreams of glory and paradise, spirituality lives in the present moment, the here and now.
Religion lives in the confined memory and believes in eternal life, spirituality finds liberty in awareness and is conscious of all that is.
Just imagine if all the religions of the world took on a spiritual approach. Minus land and politics, most of the wars in the past have been fought over imaginary forefathers and Gods, who exist only within our faiths. How peaceful the world would be if we no longer needed to fight over and die for them. Some of the bloodiest and most grotesque wars have been fought over religious ideals for which people have laid down their lives. It’s preposterous and yet it keeps on happening.
While religion may provide a sense of community and belonging, it can also limit individual growth and freedom of thought. Spirituality, on the other hand, encourages self-exploration and offers a more holistic approach to life. Ultimately, the choice between religion and spirituality is a personal one, and individuals must find their own path to meaning and purpose; although that is not to say one can't combine the two, and that is often the situation where you are likely to find the most inspirational and devout characters from all walks of life, faith and religion.
The choice between religion and spirituality is deeply personal and can be influenced by a variety of factors, such as cultural background, family upbringing, and personal experiences. Some individuals may find solace and fulfillment in the structure and community of religion, while others may feel limited by its rules and dogma.
On the other hand, spirituality offers a more individualistic and free-form approach to personal growth and meaning. It encourages individuals to explore their inner selves, connect with their intuition and inner voice, and find their own unique path to fulfillment and purpose.
Ultimately, the decision to choose between religion and spirituality is a deeply personal one that requires careful consideration and self-reflection. It is important to respect the choices and beliefs of others, while also remaining open to exploring different perspectives and approaches to spirituality and personal growth.
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