Sunday, January 10, 2010

Religion And Spirituality

People often talk about religion versus spirituality. At this stage of my life, I think of myself more as a spiritual person than a religious one. The following is from a teaching of the Dalai Lama and I think it articulates very well the difference between religion and spirituality.

I believe there is an important distinction to be made between religion and spirituality. Religion I take to be concerned with belief in the claims to salvation of one faith tradition or another, an aspect of which is acceptance of some form of meta-physical or philosophical reality, including perhaps an idea of heaven or hell. Connected with this are religious teachings or dogma, ritual, prayers 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.
-His Holiness the Dalai Lama

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