Many of us who are naturally spiritual have always felt an inner need to know more and understand what life is all about. Quite often even from being very young you may have experienced things that others have not and quietly learned to put them to one side for fear of ridicule or simply just not being believed.
Spirituality can refer to an ultimate or immaterial reality, an inner path enabling a person to discover the essence of their being; or the “deepest values and meanings by which people live. Spiritual practices including meditation, prayer and contemplation are intended to develop an individual's inner life; such practices often lead to a greater feeling of being connected with a larger reality, yielding a more comprehensive self and linking with other individuals or the community you live in as well as with nature the cosmos and the devine realm.
Traditionally, religions have regarded spirituality as an integral aspect of religion in all its forms. Many do still equate spirituality with religion, but declining membership of organized religions and the growth of secularism especially in the western world has given rise to a broader view of spirituality.
Spirituality has played a central role in many self help self movements such as Alcoholic Anonymous. For instance if an alcoholic failed to perfect and enlarge his spiritual life through work and self-sacrifice for others, he could not survive the certain trials and low spots ahead.
Spirituality often relates to the non-physical. In a sense it means connecting to a higher power and also personally connecting to the universe. Being spiritual does not mean you have to follow a certain religion or practice. Religious learning usually has a set structure to follow, spirituality does not and therefore follows only the rules of the higher self. Although many religions have a golden thread of truth which sometimes gets misunderstood or even used to control, spiritual people realise deep down that it is up to them to find their own truth.
Extract from introduction to Psychic & Spiritual Development Study Course