November 16, 2011
What is the difference between religion and spirituality? This question is not new, and any answers we attempt to come up with might not be new either. It is still a question which conjures up a wide variety of debate, argument, and emotion.
Having grown up in a small, closely knit and fundamentally religious environment, I have a first hand view of religion as it may apply to a person's individual relationship with God (Creator).
Do we all have a purpose? Are we all here for a specific reason? Some say yes...some say no. In my mind, if we are NOT here for a specific purpose, then we are more-or-less in the same category as many other components of creation; that is, we would be on the same level of purpose as the squirrel which many of us have run over on the streets. Or the mosquito we've slapped to smithereens. Or the mouse we've barbarically trapped as it innocently attempted to get its food. Or the deer we've hunted as it foraged quietly in its natural domain.
On the other hand, if humans ARE here for a particular grander purpose, do we know what that purpose is? And, do we all fulfill that purpose? Or, is that something only certain people attain to? Sometimes, it appears that some people just have a gift of one thing or another, such as when we see or hear about child prodigies who are miraculously able to play the piano (etc.) better than many professionals; often at very young ages.
And, we know of many heroes of history who seemed to be gifted with certain intelligence or spirituality, which gave them insights and the power and authority to teach to others some of the most profoundly influential solutions for some of the most challenging questions of our existence.
People like the familiar religious heroes, and the great scientists, inventors, writers, poets, artists, musicians, preachers, and so many others.
Whether or not such individuals held to a particular religion or were more inclined toward spirituality might never be known, but I have the idea that they probably knew, inherently, that they were special in ways the majority of us may never understand. We can only be thankful they came along, and that they knew they had to do something, and that something became clear to them, and they worked hard and actually did it.
I'm just sayin'...
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