A Very Short Introduction
7. Conclusion: leading a spiritual life
It should now be clear both that spirituality is an increasingly widespread and influential idea and that its forms are extremely varied. In general terms, spirituality implies an understanding of what is, or should be, central to human existence and how the human spirit may reach its full potential. Spirituality is an aspirational concept in that it suggests that leading a fully human life demands goals that are more than purely materially enhancing. It speaks of integration rather than fragmentation, of a sense of ultimate purpose in place of an instinctual or unexamined life,
4. Spirituality as a way of life
This chapter explores spirituality as a way of life. Neither religious nor secular spiritualities have focused only on inner experience. In various ways they have sought to relate spiritual practices to the transformation of everyday existence. In contemporary contexts, ‘spirituality as a way of life’ has also taken on a more humanist turn, for example in the philosophical writings of Pierre Hadot or in writings about the spirituality of food.