Understanding Similarities Between Religion And Spirituality

If you have ever logged into a website that offers online psychic readings, the experience is likely to change your perceptions about religion and spirituality. This is because the people who run these websites might not be faithful adherents of any religion. However, these people operate in accordance with certain spiritual laws and this gives them a religious inclination. The big question here is simply this. Is spirituality the same as religion? The answer is a resounding "No". spirituality is quite different from religion but these two words definitely have a number of things in common. 

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Some experts in theology and theosophy claim that religion is an offshoot of spirituality. According to these experts, the spirit existed before the invention or advent of any religion. Again, the Almighty was there even when there was nobody to worship Him. Now, these views may be right or wrong but we do not have to get into any debate about these assertions. The aim of this essay is to look at the similarities between religion and spirituality. 

Belief in a Higher Power

It does not matter if you are an advocate of religion or spirituality. The point is that both camps believe in the existence of a higher power and a higher spiritual authority. For those in the popular monotheistic religions, this higher power is the Almighty God. The proponents of spirituality hold the view that this higher power is a universal or primal energy. Now, there is no point in talking about which camp is right or wrong. Religion and spirituality are matters of faith but they cannot be solved like an equation or proven in a court of law.   
Rituals and PracticesBoth religion and spirituality go with certain rites and practices. Sacraments and sacred rites are features of religion. On the other hand, yoga, meditation and even astra travelling go with certain spiritual exercises. In some cases, these rites have to do with age, gender, position and seniority in the religion or the spiritual organization. 

Respect for the Other World

No religion or spiritual order is complete without an acknowledgement and a belief in the other world. This other world could be heaven, hell, a higher spiritual plane or a place of eternal rest. Again, both religion and spirituality advocates believe in a system of rewards and punishment as well as the law of retributive justice.

Finally, both camps seek a closer relationship with the higher power, respect for humanity and the promotion of peaceful co-existence. Clearly, religion and spirituality may not be same but they sure do have a lot in common.