I hope that it is okay for me to post such a long selection from a book on my blog (please let me know if you know of otherwise, so I can amend), however below is such a complete definition - and redefinition - of Spirituality that I could not bring myself to cut it down.
I have always defined my spirituality as my "fire" - it is that thing in me that motivates me to live and do and breathe and create in the world. I never thought that spirituality is actually HOW I deal with the fire in me to live, do, breathe and create. I love that Ronald Rolheiser takes spirituality out of the mystical and into the every day of how we choose to live our "one wild and precious life" to quote another wisdom figure, Mary Oliver.
Here is the excerpt:
"For many people, the term spirituality conjures up images of something paranormal, mystical, churchy, holy, pious, otherworldly, New Age, something on the fringes and something optional. Rarely is spirituality understood as referring to something vital and nonnegotiable lying at the heart of our lives.
This is a tragic misunderstanding. Spirituality is not something on the fringes, an option for those with a particular bent. None of us has a choice. Everyone has to have a spirituality and everyone does have one, either a life-giving one or a destructive one. No one has the luxury of choosing here because all of us are precisely fired into life with a certain madness that comes from the gods and we have to do something with that. We do not wake up in this world calm and serene, having the luxury of choosing to act or not act. We wake up crying, on fire with desire, with madness. What we do with that madness is our spirituality.
Hence, spirituality is not about serenely picking or rationally choosing certain spiritual activities like going to church, praying, or meditating, reading spiritual books, or setting off on some explicit spiritual quest. It is far more basic than that. Long before we do anything explicitly religious at all, we have to do something about the fire that burns within us. What we do with that fire, how we channel it, is our spirituality. Thus, we all have a spirituality whether we want one or not, whether we are religious or not. Spirituality is more about whether or not we can sleep at night than about whether or not we go to church. It is about being integrated or falling apart, about being within community or being lonely, about being in harmony with Mother Earth or being alienated from her. Irrespective of whether or not we let ourselves act in ways that leave us either healthy or unhealthy, loving or bitter. What shapes our actions is our spirituality." - Ronald Rolheiser in "The Holy Longing"
Wild Lotus Living is me, Summer Starr. Here I share my personal musings and resources on my own path of unfolding