Showing posts tagged spirituality
Religion I take to be concerned with faith in the claims to salvation of one faith tradition or another, an aspect of which is acceptance of some form of metaphysical or supernatural reality, including perhaps an idea of heaven or nirvana. Connected with this are religious teachings or dogma, ritual, prayer, and so on. spirituality I take to be concerned with those qualities of the human spirit - such as love and compassion, patience, tolerance, forgiveness, contentment, a sense of responsibility, a sense of harmony - which bring happiness to both self and others. While ritual and prayer, along with the questions of nirvana and salvation, are directly connected to religious faith, these inner qualities need not be, however. There is thus no reason why the individual should not develop them, even to a high degree, without recourse to any religious or metaphysical belief system. This is why I sometimes say that religion is something we can perhaps do without. What we cannot do without are these basic spiritual qualities.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama, “Ethics for the New Millenium”, p. 22
Queer politics itself, finally, is a kind of spiritual exercise, a modern practice of the self….[M]odern modes of ascesis, for all that they may have to do with effort and imagination and collective struggle have little to do with austerity: what can impart to human lives in the modern world something of the intensity of existence which philosophers in the ancient world sought out through their strategic practices of austerity is not the elimination but rather the cultivation of pleasure. Foucault’s “homosexual ascesis” calls not for less pleasure but for vastly more pleasure - including the intense pleasures procured by means of drugs, sadomaochistic eroticism, and anonymous sex.
David M. Halperin,Saint Foucault: Towards a Gay Hagiography, 102-103.
Reclaiming our spiritual identity is not a case of becoming religious again, going to church on Sunday, following the rules and laws of a particular faith, reading the Bible or Koran every day. No, it goes much deeper than any of this. As many of the great faiths suggest (but poorly implement) spirituality is about enlightenment and liberation. The spiritual journey is about opening up new horizons of love and understanding, not by ignoring or bypassing the darkness and pain of life, but precisely through experiencing and integrating them. Through this process we are liberated from the confines, restriction s, and limitations imposed on us frequently by our own personal ignorance, but also by the collective oppression of our man-made institutions.
Diarmuid O’Murchu, Quantum Theology: Spiritual Implications of the New Physics, 83.
The pivotal shift in spirituality’s meaning for the twentieth century resides in the birth of a worldview of interdependence or relationality. In its broadest sense, …spirituality is the relational component of a lived experience.
Katherine Zappone
If you are alive, you are on a sacred path.
Jamie Sams, Dancing the Dream, p 3.
To every man is given the key to the gates of heaven; the same key opens the gates of hell.

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