How Do People Define Spirituality?

Spirituality is an important component of a person’s mental wellness, but it is often difficult to define. A quick Google search on the term “spirituality” yields over 3,000,000,000 results in less than a second. The answer to this question is complex, but most commonly, spirituality is defined as a personal journey of transformation and healing that occurs when a rational, self-centered mind begins to mature and open up to the reality of a greater, divine consciousness.

While people may use many different spiritual practices, it is important to define what their own definition of spirituality is based on their unique needs, goals and interests. In the survey, we used the following three questions to help people clearly define their own spiritual path:

Transcendent Spirituality

A transcendent perspective on life focuses on the concept that there is a higher power or energy that exists outside of our physical existence and provides meaning and purpose in this world. It can be reflected in religious traditions such as Neo-Vedanta, Hinduism, Buddhism or Animism. It can also be viewed in more secular paths such as Panentheism, New Age, Transpersonal Psychology or Flow Theory. As a result of this, those who favor transcendent spirituality often focus on a more personal, inward-focused approach to their life, and they typically tend toward practices like meditation, yoga or prayer. This perspective on life can also influence one’s relationship to their community, their beliefs about life purpose and their sense of well-being.