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10 years ago  ::  Apr 03, 2008 - 11:18PM #101
Posts: 17
Spirituality is the inner knowing, the "Gnosis" that comes from direct awareness of the Divine.  In the realm of quantum physics, it is known as connecting with the quantum field, the energy grid from which all form emanates.  It is unique to the individual and yet individuals can connect with others to sense the oneness that unites all within existence.  Religion is the outer knowing of someone else's experience of the Divine.  It is based on faith and belief rather than inner awareness.  It is the consensus of thinking minds about the Divine and usually centers around a sacred text.  The problem with religion is that because it honors faith and belief, it causes conflict because there is no consensus among believers as to what are the "correct" beliefs.  Spirituality, on the other hand, honors the individual experience of the Divine, which at its most simple expression, unites all in the oneness of creation.
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10 years ago  ::  Apr 07, 2008 - 1:55PM #102
Posts: 1,165
I believe most of us relate to religion as a particular set of beliefs that are practiced, and studied as a group. Now, whether these beliefs were instilled in us or followed from our own truths found within us are the determining factors, IMO.  Intune[/I]

Religion gives one outside rules and theories, it is not a one on one practice, but tries to reach all whose persersonal beliefs want to feel whatever comfort it can give you, to me, it is a "booster" to reach your spirituality.  bjbucks

The big 3 (Islam, Jewish, Christianity) just may fit this narrow (minded) definition of religion as a practice.  It does NOT fit ALL religions - there are some new ones (New Thought, Spiritualism, etc.) that are not confined by these rules and rituals. 

Spirituality is certainly our inner longings for spirit.
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10 years ago  ::  Apr 26, 2008 - 3:51AM #103
Posts: 1
[QUOTE=Nightowl35;4583]To me it means that one approaches all the existential and moral questions of life on their own terms ... without dictation by any religious dogma.[/QUOTE]

Glad I read this-- I needed this defined this way for me. Thanks
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10 years ago  ::  Apr 27, 2008 - 6:03PM #104
Posts: 452
To me Religion is by man, education.

Knowledge is from God, some are born with it. Jesus and many other where born with it.
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10 years ago  ::  May 01, 2008 - 2:25PM #105
Posts: 1
Being spiritual has nothing to do with religion. Religion is an umbrella term covering practices made by men to make their lives more meaningful, often for selfish reasons. Spirituality comes from within. It is a respect for the earth and all who inhabit it. It is the Golden Rule practiced every day one one's own. It is not used for monetary gain, having the biggest congregation, or fighting wars in the name of "God". If you are truly spiritual, you have no need for any of these things.
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10 years ago  ::  May 01, 2008 - 6:15PM #106
Posts: 452
Very True words, the Kingdom is within.
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10 years ago  ::  May 03, 2008 - 2:36PM #107
Posts: 1,165
[QUOTE=Faithbiteme;470451]Being spiritual has nothing to do with religion. Religion is an umbrella term covering practices made by men to make their lives more meaningful, often for selfish reasons. Spirituality comes from within. It is a respect for the earth and all who inhabit it. It is the Golden Rule practiced every day one one's own. It is not used for monetary gain, having the biggest congregation, or fighting wars in the name of "God". If you are truly spiritual, you have no need for any of these things.

That is merely a jugement call on all religions in your experience.  I happen to know of religions that do not have those focus as described.  Motivation is an important aspect of any endeavour.
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10 years ago  ::  May 07, 2008 - 8:36AM #108
Posts: 122
Now and again I have come across the saying, "Nothing has meaning but the meaning I give it.” I
would suppose this includes who I think I am.

They say, we cannot really understand another until we have walked in their shoes. Every human
being as they grow up within their particular cultures will form Ideas of the Ideal world. And I
think we can all agree at least at some level this has to do with our own survival instincts. Where
we differ as individuals is in our abilities to think for ourselves despite what we have learned
from others through our experiences, and the environments we come from. Some for what ever
reasons, have this view that what ever happens to them depends a lot on ‘external’ conditions,
fate, or luck. While others have this ‘intrinsic’ belief that whatever happens to them depends on
their own efforts, motivation and intent, perhaps even that  we create our reality. The latter is
certainly more rare. I would guess within this group it is so. In scientific terms this is been
labeled as our ‘Locus of Control’ center.

Like all things we experience, we label from a scale of good to bad, right and wrong, black or
white depending on our intrinsic or external orientation. We cannot escape this ‘labeling.’ If I
have a low capacity to think for myself, I still cannot escape my perceptions based on previous
experiences that will affect the way I think or perceive now. To me this is a state of  stagnation.

Imagine if for example if great inventors merely followed the accepted beliefs of their day and
this is to say, what they learned about the world through others. Would they have been able to
conceive of their fantastic ideas? Because without a doubt what they dared to think, went beyond
their perceptions, there was no model for what they did, for what they thought. Along the way
others scorned and laughed at them as being ridiculous. Sort of amending the idea, “..the world is
flat everyone knows this!” Our perceptions are only what we choose to accept as being Real and
than we tend to make these our ideal world, or at least a model for it. We say, “Well this is just
the way things are! Get over it!” And what we believe in we cherish and what we think we love
we will seek to defend or protect, and sadly to say, in many cases at all cost. Even our own
happiness. The saying, “I would rather be right than know the truth.” may apply here in some
respect to what I am getting at.

Perhaps there is no other time in our lives when we are faced with a ‘reality check’ then when we
are in a crisis. And this usually entails a great-unexpected loss of some kind. In this mode we
enter into the height of our survival instincts. The fight or flight mode as they say. We go through
all the stages of traumatic experience. Shock, denial, anger, contemplation, acceptance and
resolution. It is easy to spend one’s whole life at any one stage in this process.

In spiritual terms this is operating at least in the early stages, on our survival instincts or our
animal nature. Overcoming this stage, requires the surrendering of old patterns of perception, to
get to the level of contemplation and resolution. To me, this is the Crux of Life.

As we move or progress toward Freedom from our Crisis, and the survival instinct that are
activated when these experiences occur, (shock, denial, etc.) will gradually overcome or dispel
our previous reality, we have too, we have no choice if we are to live fully. And if we cannot, we
have even less capacity to live than the animals we share this world with. Animals themselves
merely do their thing to perfection. They do not ‘think’ who they are, they survive on natural
instincts. But as human beings we have the capacity to rise above these mere survival instincts
into loftier planes of consciousness. It is our gift. It is the gift of Free Will. But free will does not
give us the right or power to change what is, in fact we can’t change anything, but we can choose
change the way we think. We can choose to change the way we see. From my perspective, this is
my path to freedom. Away from living in this path, I have chosen to surrender to my ‘enemy’,
rather than to the truth. In this process I have become a willing prisoner in my own mind. And
standing guard as my jailer is none other than my perceptions.

The whole point of this discourse relates to where I am at the moment. Like so many of us in this
world, I too have suffered through crisis, the fact that I am a combat veteran adds to this
experience. I realize in truth no one will understand me from a level of perception or intellectual
knowledge unless they have gone through what I have, however I also believe through
compassion we can empathize with one another and in the process grow spiritually. Thus the
spiritually minded truly seek that ‘non-judgmental’ state of seeing. In this way the barriers of
perceived differences become walls of separation torn down. We see we have the same goals to
find meaning not only to life, but to ourselves. To me there is no greater love then to offer this to
one another.

Thank you for allowing me to share some thoughts with you today.  j
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10 years ago  ::  Jun 03, 2008 - 8:30PM #109
Posts: 106
>Spiritheart,  I once got a message from a spirit guide, during meditation, concerning the ideas of right and wrong, good and bad, etc., which you were mentioning.  This guide said that there is only need for measuring things against each other when we are bounded by physical form, in a lifetime, which exists in a specific time and place.  Much of our disagreements with each other may come from this experience, as no one can truly experience another's awareness, as long as we are defined by these borders.  And that existence after death and before birth concerns itself more with what works or doesn't work;  more like an electrical circuit being completed.  There are no value judgments, just a sense of what is needed for all to flow.  I myself believe that choosing our behaviors carefully can lead to a little more empathy with other peoples' situations, because each decision brings you closer to some people and further away from others.  The tricky part , for me, is in discerning between my impulses that come from a need for "survival", as you were saying, and those impulses that come from a desire for social acceptance in specific situations.  I think many spiritual ties, within a social context ,are severed when we are thrown into the chaos of crisis, and those same ties are often the guideposts for a life well-spent.  The solution for me, to choose wisely at these times, is to consciously try and be aware of what makes me calmer, and how I can increase the chance of me being in these situations more frequently.  The more complicated my life becomes, the less I can do this, so I always try to simplify when given a choice.  As a child, I was exposed to an elaborate system of complicated rules and rituals, in an organized religion.  The guidebooks I read left no room for indecision or misunderstanding.  Whenever I questioned my elders, they scolded me for even thinking outside the proscribed lines.  I feel like I am now trying to approach each moment as the first I've ever witnessed, with no preconceptions or expectations.  And, remarkably, this has brought me to the "walless" state you spoke of.  I spend a lot more time listening than talking, and a lot more time watching than trying to be seen .                                                       Reach6
Leslie (Reach 6)
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10 years ago  ::  Jul 24, 2008 - 1:36PM #110
Posts: 1,165
For those who want community, it is there.  For those who want the solitary search, it is available.  Isn't life grand!  And just suppose God's hand in it all!
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