A HUGE topic! I keep cycling back to this question. It’s like my walks around our local ponds: circle back around, take deep breaths, listen, pay attention, and keep looking for new birds, or snakes! Always beautiful surprises. And maybe this is a good definition for the New Spirituality Beyond Spirituality, Religion Beyond Religion and God Beyond God: Surprise! Being startled. Being filled with Wonder at the Beauty, Power and Question-filled Quest that we call Nature and Life and Natural Life.
I’m not sure.
I DO think that Carl Sagan‘s use of the term “Spirituality” or “Spirit” in its oldest sense as “Breath” and “Wind” makes sense. Not that we NEED to keep using that word. We don’t.
Naturalist John Burroughs nailed it, I think, when he wrote:
” [‘Religion’ is] not necessarily so much a definite creed or belief as an attraction and aspiration toward the Infinite, or a feeling of awe and reverence inspired by the contemplation of this wonderful and mysterious universe. . . .”
“Science tends more and more to reveal to us the unity that underlies the diversity of nature. . . . Amid all the diversity of creeds and sects we are coming more and more to see that religion is one, that verbal differences and ceremonies are unimportant, and that the fundamental agreements are alone significant. Religion as a key or passport to some other world has had its day; as a mere set of statements or dogmas about the Infinite mystery it has had its day. Science makes us more and more at home in this world.”
Earlier in Accepting the Universe, he says,
“The other world fades as this world brightens. Science has made this world so interesting and wonderful. . .thoughts of another world are becoming foreign to us. [We] feel at home on this planet.”
What are Your Thoughts?
Can there be a Non-Spiritual Spirituality? An Atheist Spirituality?
If so, what does that look like?