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No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 11:08 am
by Hanzze
A dispute about spirituality has arose:

the one side means:
There is very little about spirituality that is outside the bonds of belief. And its an extraordinarily rare spiritual experience that is some kind of 'seeing truth'
I would not say that there are not "spiritual experiences" out there that are not of value to those that have them, but I'd say that what the Buddha taught points to something a bit beyond anything else.
Real spiritual!-->Then you do not need Buddhism at all?
The quotes do not refer to persons or opinion and are chosen accidental.

the other side means:
Religion is an organization with doctrine, and discipline, ritual and liturgy etc.
Spirituality is about deep and meaningful experiences, which can be achieved without any of the above.
Real spiritual!
The quotes do not refer to persons or opinion and are chosen accidental.

spirituality form a wikipedia view:
Spirituality can refer to an ultimate or immaterial reality;
[1] an inner path enabling a person to discover the essence of their being; or the “deepest values and meanings by which people live.”
[2] Spiritual practices, including meditation, prayer and contemplation, are intended to develop an individual's inner life; such practices often lead to an experience of connectedness with a larger reality, yielding a more comprehensive self; with other individuals or the human community; with nature or the cosmos; or with the divine realm.
[3] Spirituality is often experienced as a source of inspiration or orientation in life.
[4] It can encompass belief in immaterial realities or experiences of the immanent or transcendent nature of the world.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spirituality
lat. spiritus ,germ. Geist (engl. mind), breath‘ / spiro ,I breath‘ – also oldgreek. ψύχω or ψυχή, look psyche
spirituality and pali:
translation of spirit, spiritual and spirituality --> please share

The question:
Has the Buddhadhamma (please not from a religious/believe view) no place for spirituality? To be spiritual (active/employed with once/the spirit) contra productive on the path of the Buddhadhamma?

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 12:10 pm
by Sanghamitta
I think that you are going to have to define your terms a bit better Hanzze,

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 12:41 pm
by Hanzze
_/\_

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 12:46 pm
by andre9999
I'm going to suggest different definitions. They're simpler and I think more clear:

Spirituality: of, relating to, or affecting aspects other than the physical self
Religion: a system, doctrine, or beliefs relating to spirituality or god(s)

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 12:58 pm
by andre9999
I think I was just watching the same thread you were. Im new here, but I often wonder why the threads often fall into semantic arguments. I'm actually surprised to see how passionate people get about certain aspects of Buddhism, and frankly (and probably wrongly) it strikes me as clinging.

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 1:09 pm
by Hanzze
_/\_

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 3:21 pm
by Spiny O'Norman
andrer9999 wrote:Spirituality: of, relating to, or affecting aspects other than the physical self
It's a start, but then we'd need to define "physical" and "self" in a way that everybody could agree on. To be honest I'm not convinced it's worth the effort, and for that reason I tend to avoid words like "spiritual" these days.

Spiny

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 3:42 pm
by Hanzze
_/\_

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 4:02 pm
by andre9999
Spiny O'Norman wrote:It's a start, but then we'd need to define "physical" and "self" in a way that everybody could agree on. To be honest I'm not convinced it's worth the effort, and for that reason I tend to avoid words like "spiritual" these days.
I don't disagree in the least if we're just talking about Buddhism. But if we're looking for something a little more comprehensive that stretches beyond just Buddhism, I think it covers the general concept.

Still, arguing over whether saying the word "spiritual" covers what we do is semantics if you ask me. Maybe it isn't the perfect word to use in discussions amongst ourselves, but it's a word that newcomers or non-Buddhists can understand in order to get the general idea.

And yes, I understand that I'm being a hypocrite, so I'll shut up now.

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 4:12 pm
by Hanzze
_/\_

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 9:04 pm
by tiltbillings
This question makes no sense.

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 9:45 pm
by Peril
Tricks are "magic" until you understand them, then they're just tricks.

Experiences are "spiritual" until you understand them, then they're just experiences.

I think Buddhism defeats spirituality.

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 9:48 pm
by tiltbillings
Peril wrote:Tricks are "magic" until you understand them, then they're just tricks.

Experiences are "spiritual" until you understand them, then they're just experiences.

I think Buddhism defeats spirituality.
That's reasonable.

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Sat Nov 13, 2010 12:13 am
by Laurens
Peril wrote:Tricks are "magic" until you understand them, then they're just tricks.

Experiences are "spiritual" until you understand them, then they're just experiences.

I think Buddhism defeats spirituality.
Words are just noises and squiggles, but they're useful. I used the word spiritual because it helped describe what I was getting at. I know it was just an experience, but I used the word spiritual to help you, the reader gain some understanding of what kind of experience I had, and how those experiences can be achieved without the trappings of religiosity.

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Sat Nov 13, 2010 12:35 am
by Hanzze
_/\_

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Sat Nov 13, 2010 9:16 am
by Spiny O'Norman
Laurens wrote: I used the word spiritual because it helped describe what I was getting at.
For sure. The problem I have with words like "spiritual" is that they can mean entirely different things to different people.

Spiny

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Sat Nov 13, 2010 9:28 am
by Annapurna
tiltbillings wrote:This question makes no sense.
Agree. Where would the definiton /explanation of spirituality seriously collide with Buddhism?
Spirituality can refer to an ultimate or immaterial reality;

[1] an inner path enabling a person to discover the essence of their being; or the “deepest values and meanings by which people live.”
[2] Spiritual practices, including meditation, prayer and contemplation, are intended to develop an individual's inner life; such practices often lead to an experience of connectedness with a larger reality, yielding a more comprehensive self; with other individuals or the human community; with nature or the cosmos; or with the divine realm.
[3] Spirituality is often experienced as a source of inspiration or orientation in life.
[4] It can encompass belief in immaterial realities or experiences of the immanent or transcendent nature of the world.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spirituality" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
lat. spiritus ,germ. Geist (engl. mind), breath‘ / spiro ,I breath‘ – also oldgreek. ψύχω or ψυχή, look psyche

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Sat Nov 13, 2010 9:56 am
by Laurens
Spiny O'Norman wrote:
Laurens wrote: I used the word spiritual because it helped describe what I was getting at.
For sure. The problem I have with words like "spiritual" is that they can mean entirely different things to different people.

Spiny
It's the same with a lot of words unfortunately.

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Sat Nov 13, 2010 1:10 pm
by Annapurna
Spiny O'Norman wrote:
Laurens wrote: I used the word spiritual because it helped describe what I was getting at.
For sure. The problem I have with words like "spiritual" is that they can mean entirely different things to different people.

Spiny
A definition was posted in the OP.

Re: No place for spirituality in Theravada?

Posted: Sat Nov 13, 2010 6:06 pm
by Viscid
Buddhism, by my (and apparently wikipedia's) definition is steeped in spirituality.

- Meditative practice is spiritual.
- Applying Insight into the nature of conditioned phenomena is spiritual.
- Stream-entry is an intensely spiritual experience.
- Realization of the Four Noble Truths is spiritual.
- Having knowledge of Karma and Past Lives is spiritual.
[1] an inner path enabling a person to discover the essence of their being; or the “deepest values and meanings by which people live.”
[2] Spiritual practices, including meditation, prayer and contemplation, are intended to develop an individual's inner life; such practices often lead to an experience of connectedness with a larger reality, yielding a more comprehensive self; with other individuals or the human community; with nature or the cosmos; or with the divine realm.
[3] Spirituality is often experienced as a source of inspiration or orientation in life.
[4] It can encompass belief in immaterial realities or experiences of the immanent or transcendent nature of the world.
If there was no spiritual practice in Buddhism, then it'd just be intellectual discourse and debate about philosophical subjects.

Perhaps people mean 'spiritual' in a way which supposes that things which are 'spiritual' cannot be explained through objective methods? That's a silly qualification.