Spirituality is often experienced as an abundant source of great inspiration and purpose in our lives. The concept of spirituality does not only try to redefine our experience in the natural world, but also explores inner experience – especially our thinking – with the same enthusiasm that we apply to our outer sensory experiences of the world in which we live. Spirituality is generally viewed as a path toward a higher state of awareness, perfection of one’s own being, wisdom or communion with a higher power.
Common spiritual practices include meditation, prayer and contemplation, which are intended to develop and strengthen an individual’s relationship with an inner life. This particular spiritual experience and principle establishes a connection with a larger reality or Higher Power, which yields a more comprehensive, identified and realized understanding of self.
Traditionally, organized religion regards spirituality as an integral aspect of the religious experience; the terms spirituality and religion both relate to a search for an Absolute or God. There are fundamental differences in the applications of religion and spirituality: religion implies a particular faith tradition that insists upon acceptance of a metaphysical reality by which all members of that faith must abide, almost identically. Spirituality is not bound to any specific religious tradition and is generally more tolerant of new, innovative, and unique views of reality and connection to God.
Many people speak of spirituality outside of religious context, often identifying themselves as “spiritual but not religious”. Generally speaking, spiritual individuals believe in the existence of many different and unique spiritual paths, not only one as outlined by organized religion, emphasizing the importance of finding one’s own individual path to spirituality.