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Spirituality vs. Religion - What Are Some of the Critical Differences Between Them?

You might have heard your friend or somebody claiming to be spiritual and religious. You instantly think that they are into reading and meditating on the holy book of their religion. This might have got you pondering on what is spiritual and religious.

Do they mean the same? What does somebody mean when they say that they are spiritual or religious? Though many of us tend to use the words "spiritual" and "religious" often, thinking that they mean the same, they are quite the opposite.

In this post, we will try to discover some critical differences between them. Perhaps, this may shed some light on Spirituality vs Religion.

Spirituality vs Religion

Who is a Spiritual Person?

Before that, who is a spiritual person? You can be called a spiritual person when you like to live in harmony with people of other religions.

That is right. They don't insult or humiliate people of another religion.

They speak kindly to others and strive hard to improve the world.


Who is a Religious Person?

Who is a religious person? You can be a religious person when you are devoted to your religion. You could belong to any religion. You meditate on your Holy book, day & night. You know the laws of your book by heart and follow them consistently.

However, it does not mean that you are kind to those of other religions. Moreover, you don't need to have the traits of a spiritual person.

Spirituality vs Religion

Differences Between Spirituality and Religion

Now, we will read about Spirituality vs Religion.

1. Individual vs. Group Beliefs

The primary difference between spirituality is that it is an individual's experience that has nothing to do with others. As a person, you want to test, understand, and know your spiritual beliefs.

However, religion is a group of people who come together due to their God or faith. You see, there are so many religions in our world. Each of them claims to be right in their way. But a spiritual person knows what to accept and what not to accept.

So, when you want to know whether you can be both spiritual and religious, then it is a yes. When you are spiritual, you question yourself about what is being said rather than argue with the religion.

You feel that humanity is one and the same. In contrast, a religious person will not see eye to eye to eye with you. They believe in their own religion and will go to the ends of the earth to prove you wrong.


2. Beliefs Increase With Progression of Life

As a spiritual person, your beliefs increase with the progression of life. You gain knowledge through your own study, research, and understanding of your thoughts. You are free to think and interpret thoughts to yourself.

When you are religious, you are bound by the shackles of your religious books. You tend to toe in line with what is said in the books and the laws. The authorities of your religious group force the ideologies on you, discouraging you from thinking further.

You have to become obedient to what your law says. You are fixed in your beliefs because you don't heed your inner calling, then somebody spiritual who has gained their understanding of the laws.

As a spiritual individual, you are encouraged to listen to your voice and decide to know the truth. You are broken free from the shackles of a religious person who is firm only on the laws given in their religion.


3. Spirituality Lets You be Flexible

Spirituality allows you to follow an ideology rather than something you may or may not be comfortable with. You will get the answers as you meditate and ask yourself deep questions.

You are allowed to follow your own intuition. Sadly, a religious person does not want to accept anything against their religion. That is because they can only get what is given in their faith.

A religious person is afraid that they might invite the wrath of God or fellow believers. That should not be the case. It is because you can gain true happiness when you live and lead a life with good and pure intentions.


4. Beliefs are Different

It becomes apparent that the beliefs differ entirely from a spiritual and religious person. A spiritual person's beliefs are not the same as a religious person. As a spiritual person, you try to understand things through trial & error.

You are not afraid to trust your beliefs, though you may be wrong sometimes. When you are corrected, you accept it wholeheartedly. However, a religious person develops the truth from the wrong through the priests and other believers.

The chances of a religious person making mistakes are almost nil. However, several religious people tend to repeat the same mistake again & again. The same can be said about a spiritual person as well.

But, the self-discovery process has no boundaries. You tend to trust your heart and follow your instinct. Most of the time, it turns out to be the best decision you have made in your life, personally and professionally.

You finally realize that you are not a mere mortal but can tap into unlimited abilities by following your own instinct.

As we can see, a spiritual person wants to know the truth beyond what is given in the Holy books. You are okay with sometimes looking out of your religion to learn and understand the truth.

That is because you are flexible in your thoughts & beliefs. We can say that religion emphasizes specific facts you must follow willingly. The same is different from the case of spirituality because you want to see how those beliefs play out in real life.

Spirituality vs Religion

Final Thoughts on Spirituality vs Religion

We hope you were able to understand what is Spirituality vs Religion. As you read, spirituality and religion are not the same. Being spiritual has its own traits and characteristics, and religion has its features.

However, through both, we seek to know the truth. We want to see the difference between right & wrong. Moreover, we want to understand & learn more about life. When these two combine, we react, think, and feel that way.

Being religious helps you to have a close relationship with your God through your sacred text. That does not mean that you are religious tolerant. However, being spiritual enables you to live in peace & harmony with people of other religions.

You do not feel the need to defend your religion against other religions. At the end of the day, you need to decide whether you want to be either spiritual or seek religion.

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