Spirituality is everyday, concrete, and widely applicable

Spirituality is everyday, concrete, and widely applicable.

It’s about developing will-power to overcome short-term behaviour (i.e., the point of asceticism). It’s about the habit of breathing deeply, say. It’s about experiences related to being in nature. It’s the habit of asking ‘How can I make this a bit better?’ Of getting closer to habitually treating others as you would like to be treated. Of tending to focus on beauty, truth, and goodness.

These aren’t esoteric or ‘airy-fairy’ – or, at least, they don’t need to be. Spiritual practices have obvious, everyday results – or, they should.

In Christianity, cultivating these practices is part of what’s known as ‘theosis’, which on the Christian understanding is to become more Godlike (theo-, God-, which is to say, the Good).

Similarly, the societal goal for Christians is the ‘Kingdom of God.’ This isn’t an airy-fairy, disembodied state. Rather, it’s a highly-functioning society with humans who are physical, who are engaging in (real) relationships with other humans.

It is obvious to see how ‘spiritual’ practices such as listed above (and many more) can contribute to this state of affairs.

My impression is that some Christians think spiritual practice is equivalent to going to a Church service for an hour or two a day a week. Rather, it is better to think of this as the cherry, on top of the icing, on top of the cake.

Put another way, ideally, something like a weekly Church service is a lever, that can help as one way to catalyze further spiritual growth. The growing, learning, and so on can often be done or catalyzed in the other 110 hours, not just the 2 hours when one is in a Church – and there are many other potential catalysts.

So, the point of spiritual practices is to create habits that have impact on everyday happenings, both personally and societally. Spirituality is all about implementation.

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