Spirituality -- what is it?
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
01-09-2011, 08:07 AM
 
Spirituality -- what is it?
I had an experience once some people would call religious (I called it Spiritual at the time).

I was planting corn in my backyard garden and suddenly realized what an incredibly beautiful thing nature was: all the information needed to grow the corn plant and multiply my effort hundred-fold was in that single little kernel I was pushing into the ground.

I actually had tears in my eyes and heard myself thinking: “Thank you for feeding us!”

Except I wasn’t talking to a god.

I was talking as a leaf would talk to the tree it lives on.
Quote this message in a reply
01-09-2011, 08:49 AM (This post was last modified: 01-09-2011 08:52 AM by Stark Raving.)
RE: Spirituality -- what is it?
Was there any spirits present, or was it the amazing machine we call "thought" working?

I call that an epiphany, but I know that's a christian word too. Tom me I always thought it meant something along the lines of, "sudden and deep understanding or realization."

Anyone else suggest a word to describe this?

[Image: StarkLord01.gif]
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
01-09-2011, 08:53 AM
 
RE: Spirituality -- what is it?
(01-09-2011 08:49 AM)Stark Raving Wrote:  Was there any spirits present

No spirits involved, the sun was still not over the yard arm and I never drink before noon!

Only my humble and receptive mind. Wink
Quote this message in a reply
01-09-2011, 11:18 AM
RE: Spirituality -- what is it?
I had what could be deemed as a "spiritual awakening" once. I used to meditate a lot more than I do now and it was at the beggining of one meditation that I experienced what felt like the deepest connection with something.....it was like my conciousness suddenly started expanding within myself to boundarys that were huge in my awareness.....it was a beautifull thing however it ended as soon as I questioned it (through fear TBH).

I term it "spiritual" because I have no other tag to which to apply.......the term "spiritual" itself encompasses so many many different things. Im open to the possibility that what I experienced could simply have been something in my mind.....as much as what I feel like it was......however fully describing it would take an eternity and I dont think words can do justice in any way.

I was going through a bit of stress at the time......so I have to include that in the factor........the mind is a funny thing, however it seems to be a huge part of "spirituality" nowadays.

For no matter how much I use these symbols, to describe symptoms of my existence.
You are your own emphasis.
So I say nothing.

-Bemore.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
01-09-2011, 12:46 PM (This post was last modified: 01-09-2011 12:56 PM by Peterkin.)
RE: Spirituality -- what is it?
Roget didn't give me anything entirely satisfactory for "epiphany". Revelation and mystical experience are close, but almost as suspect in origin and intent.
What Zatamon and bemore are talking about is something most of us have experienced: brief, glorious glimpses of the .... um... universe-wide-web.
Simply put, the event may be so many synapses firing at once as to power a metaphorical lightbulb which illuminates a larger than normal perception.

Normally, we concentrate on the activities, challenges and puzzles of daily life, focusing a narrow beam, like a desk-lamp, on them. We need to do this in order to deal with the details and do a good job. With the overhead light on, the details are .... not lost, because we see them clearly in relation one to another - not lost, but diminished in significance. The resulting feeling - and i contend that no fireworks can equal the rush of a burst of brain-works - is awesome, liberating, bracing and embracing: it humbles us to see ourselves in scale, comforts us to know that we belong, exhilarates and enlarges us to be able to comprehend it.

I suppose 'spiritual' would have to mean something like beyond, above or outside of the mundane and practical. Big picture - and that also implies that we can't affect it. We may tinker with objects, incidents, details, but the web is outside our control; it contains us.
I think the essence of the spiritual experience is this sense of being contained, belonging, having a place and function in which we fit perfectly.*
Of course we do. Never mind 'star-stuff', all the mushy stuff in us has been recycled continuously since the primordial ooze. We have been, in a very real physical sense, here all along, connected to the whole of Earth's ecosystem, looking up at space, experiencing every facet and permutation of life. When humans are able to share that insight - emotional state? hyper-awareness? - as a group, that connectedness gives us a great deal of support; it makes us internally safe even in external peril.

I keep using pairs of opposites to describe this phenomenon, because i think that's what's at the bottom of it: synthesis.

ETA(*This is what religionists exploit, the yearning to belong. Instead of waiting, or meditating, or gardening to get odd, unpredictable glimpses into the web, they offer a guaranteed, infallible shortcut. Too bad it's to a fake world, which is at war with the real one.)

It's not the mean god I have trouble with - it's the people who worship a mean god.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
01-09-2011, 05:13 PM
 
RE: Spirituality -- what is it?
Beautifully said, Peterkin.

Here is another 'spiritual' experience recorded in a poem:

The blue heron

The blue heron conjured itself out of hot shimmering air,
or, maybe it just floated up from the marsh
by the grayish-blue band of the road I was driving on.
It did not seem to fly, just hovered
with lazy indifference to the gravity
binding me to the ground.

It was huge: all wings, neck and legs
yet it had the beauty of the improbable:
all curves carrying a head
that was mostly just beak:
a feathery mosquito
with a five-foot wingspan.

Herons are so mysterious,
so rare,
an omen, a sign,
a revelation with great importance -
I asked what message it brought
to a human on a quest.

It did not reply directly,
just kept ahead of me,
out of reach,
transcending the obvious and predictable
to something almost completely unknown,
yet frighteningly familiar:

It seemed to say:
existence is not uniquely human,
we are all part of the puzzle,
with equally significant roles
in teaching one another
about beauty, truth
and harmony in the universe.

I thanked him for this piece
I have been missing
through a lifetime of trying to understand -
the obvious answer to an age-old question:
It’s not all about us, people,
it is about life…
…we are just a small
and not always important part.

It's about being, loving, dying,
reborning and retrying,
forever,
or until we finally,
one day,
realize
that we are not that different
from anything alive
on this Planet,
we are not many, but
we are
only
one.
Quote this message in a reply
01-09-2011, 10:34 PM
RE: Spirituality -- what is it?
At the still point of the turning world. Neither flesh nor fleshless;
Neither from nor towards; at the still point, there the dance is,
But neither arrest nor movement. And do not call it fixity,
Where past and future are gathered. Neither movement from nor towards,
Neither ascent nor decline. Except for the point, the still point,
There would be no dance, and there is only the dance.

--T.S. Eliot, Burnt Norton, II

Religious disputes are like arguments in a madhouse over which inmate really is Napoleon.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
05-09-2011, 05:26 PM
RE: Spirituality -- what is it?
(01-09-2011 05:13 PM)Zatamon Wrote:  The blue heron

The blue heron conjured itself out of hot shimmering air,
or, maybe it just floated up from the marsh
by the grayish-blue band of the road I was driving on.
It did not seem to fly, just hovered
with lazy indifference to the gravity
binding me to the ground.

It was huge: all wings, neck and legs
yet it had the beauty of the improbable:
all curves carrying a head
that was mostly just beak:
a feathery mosquito
with a five-foot wingspan.

Herons are so mysterious,
so rare,
an omen, a sign,
a revelation with great importance -
I asked what message it brought
to a human on a quest.

It did not reply directly,
just kept ahead of me,
out of reach,
transcending the obvious and predictable
to something almost completely unknown,
yet frighteningly familiar:

It seemed to say:
existence is not uniquely human,
we are all part of the puzzle,
with equally significant roles
in teaching one another
about beauty, truth
and harmony in the universe.

I thanked him for this piece
I have been missing
through a lifetime of trying to understand -
the obvious answer to an age-old question:
It’s not all about us, people,
it is about life…
…we are just a small
and not always important part.

It's about being, loving, dying,
reborning and retrying,
forever,
or until we finally,
one day,
realize
that we are not that different
from anything alive
on this Planet,
we are not many, but
we are
only
one.

Replicating this in the poetry corner.

Breathing - it's more art than science.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply

Possibly Related Threads...
Thread: Author Replies: Views: Last Post
  Is spirituality a drug? VulcanLogic42 12 530 01-06-2013 02:48 AM
Last Post: Luminon
  Atheism Spirituality gaglamesh731 24 2,616 17-02-2011 11:01 AM
Last Post: monkeywithcrayons
Forum Jump: