Talk:Spirituality

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There is a whole host of spirituality that has nothing to do with new age, or even religion. It may even be best described as a biological reaction to the "big" questions our minds force us to ask. I'm not sure how much it would ruin this article to "take the article to task", and make it reflect the less new age aspect of spirituality. — Unsigned, by: WaitingforGodot / talk / contribs

...a biological reaction to the "big" questions our minds force us to ask... This, to put it diplomatically and temperately, is a wad of bullshit, falling under meaning #2 from the article's opening paragraph. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 20:40, 26 October 2011 (UTC)
There are certainly spiritual experiences that are positive and can be mentioned, we just need to make sure that we disqualify it from the bullshit instead of pulling a Deepak Chopra. --ShadowofLords (talk) 22:17, 1 January 2012 (UTC)
Name one. PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 22:36, 1 January 2012 (UTC)
Quite a few scientist talk about their moments of initial "ah-ha" as being spiritual, coming from that place within our brains that is before or beyond what I would call "normal" thinking. Musicians and artists talk about spirituality as the core inspiration to their work. David Attenburgouh the recent recollection of his life, was asked about his own view of the world and he said something to the effect that "nature is my spirituality. It connects me to everything in a way that transcends daily life. I'm taking out of myself and become part of the greater. It does not mean a belief in god or the supernatural, but it does help me understand why people would believe that". --Pink mowse.pngGodotEn live 22:45, 1 January 2012 (UTC)
Spiritual experiences (same experiences brought by either psychedelics, meditation, or sporadically) have been shown to make people both feel happier and be noticed as happier, as mentioned in the sources on the page. Again: there are positive benefits that are just being studied now (potential use in end of life care for helping people with terminal illnesses come to terms with mortality before death).
Or, in other words, just the same old piffle every succeeding generation has excreted about various forms of dope. When it comes to "spiritual experiences," a distinguishing feature of Christianity is that it dispensed with the use of the entheogenic substances thitherto employed and left "spiritual experiences" solely to those who did not need dope to have them, viz., nuts. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 04:52, 2 January 2012 (UTC)
(ec)Sounds fine to me, but maybe you should try the rewrite in your userspace first if you want to make really dramatic changes to the article. I can't imagine anyone not having "spiritual" or "religious" experiences, I (and I would assume other atheists/non-believers/whatever) don't feel the need to ascribe it to some supernatural or otherworldly entity. Actually, the idea that "spiritual" experiences are supernatural is one of the ways I think religion denigrates humanity. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 07:34, 7 January 2012 (UTC)

Magic mushrooms and spirituality?[edit]

I call bullshit. Getting high is a simple material affair involving rearranging your brain chemistry. There is nothing spiritual about it. Give me a reasonable definition of the word "spiritual" that fits this case or I'm going to rip it out. PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 22:40, 1 January 2012 (UTC)

POS, spirituality is how you take events in your life and give them meaning. It does not mean you think there are gods, but it *can* mean that. When you get high, well, when SOME people get high, they enter a scientifically known mental state that is often called ecstasy, where you feel the kinds of things described by mystics. Science shows it is fully biological, but that does not make it "not spiritual" and it does not mean that for some, it does not have meaning because of their spirituality. Pink mowse.pngGodotEn live 22:45, 1 January 2012 (UTC)
Spirituality is a word that encompasses a lot of subjective experiences, but spiritual experiences are an experience agreed on by general consensus, much like experiences of "happiness". It's a chemical state of the brain much like any other state, and can be forcibly induced by drugs (with varying and potentially horrible results) or slowly achieved through meditation etc. (http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/press_releases/2006/07_11_06.html). Getting high is just a shortcut to spiritual experiences, much like any other drug can be a shortcut for curing depression. The experiences exist and are generally referred to as spiritual or mystical experiences. (http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=110997741) --ShadowofLords (talk) 23:07, 1 January 2012 (UTC)
WFG, I can give events in my life and give them meaning without evoking some kind of spirituality. I get the sense that your definition boils down to "spirituality is the state of feeling like you're feeling spirituality." SOL, why not cut out the woo and just call this article "happiness" then. Nobody has yet presented a decent definition of spirituality, but I think we can readily agree on what happiness is. PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 23:17, 1 January 2012 (UTC)
Sorry, I missed this comment. No one is saying you have to have it. It is one way people talk about that drive to give meaning to their life. Again, people like Sagan and Attenburogh use it to describe their own life, cause it fits. Like anything else in language or your daily life, you don't have to subscribe to that meaning, but it is the one in general use. And it very much does NOT require any sense of god, spirit or sacred. --Pink mowse.pngGodotEn live 00:26, 2 January 2012 (UTC)
It is different from "happiness" and measurably so. The experience of happiness involves similar chemicals but in different sections of the brain than "happiness". The commonly agreed term in the scientific community from what I've read for this type of experience is "spiritual experience". It's like the word holiday: it comes from "holy day", and there aren't really any better alternatives for the word when dealing with non-"holy" days. --ShadowofLords (talk) 23:25, 1 January 2012 (UTC)
So what am I experiencing when I am having what you think of as a spiritual experience? Why is there nothing remotely "spiritual" about it for me? You still haven't told me waht the word means. PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 23:38, 1 January 2012 (UTC)
The general academic definition is as I put it in the page "the quest for inner understanding or meaning, a sense of place, a sense of the universe at large". It's why many writers who are scientists, and even are atheist talk about the spiritual essence of science (see Sagan's quote on Spirituality, for example). "spirituality" is all about your personal meaning you place on any event, but usually of the mystical sense. it is like a word "art". at it's core, the meaning only matters, really, to me, myself and I. Pink mowse.pngGodotEn live 23:44, 1 January 2012 (UTC)
What does "mystical" mean? Also, "a sense of the universe at large" is better known as "astrology." "Inner understanding" as far as humans go is called "biology." "Meaning" is "philology," no? I still don't get it. Forgive me for not being very bright, but if a word's meaning only matters to the user, it's really not very iseful at all, is it? PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 23:51, 1 January 2012 (UTC)

I'm starting off down here again for easier reading. If you want a definition of spirituality, I think Godot gave a decent explanation. Essentially, when I am talking about "spiritual experiences" here I am talking about "religious experiences" but divorced from the religious aspect. It is a similar category of experience that one would have when speaking in tongues or deep in meditation. This is currently a topic of study called Neurotheology, and the experiences that are studied are called spiritual experiences. These experiences exist, are called "spiritual experiences", are being studied by science currently, and have shown positive benefits for human health. — Unsigned, by: ShadowofLords / talk / contribs

Religious experiences divorced from the religious aspect"? Divorced from their very defining factor? How can that be? Can I have a "sexual experience" divorced from sexuality? An "athletic experience" divorced from athletics? A "culinary experience" divorced from food? PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 00:02, 2 January 2012 (UTC)
It's because we are using terms defined by William James in 1902. Today, I don't think anyone would use the term "religious experience" or "spirituality" but that is the legacy we have. That said, when you say "divorced of the religious experince" it means quite literally taking the brain and making it fire this particular "experience" without the need to say "ah, that was god/my ancestor/a ghost", and you just say "oh, look, my brain is freaking out". One of the most compelling arguments about the beginning of religion, is that this feeling FEELS out of body, it FEELS wierd, it feels unlike anything you do daily, so not knowing that it's natural, just different, you say "oh my god, i've done/seen something supernatural". It's not unlike the work being done on near death experiences. it does appear that as the brain begins to shut down, the dying person sees white light and feels peace. in teh right context, you say "oh, i'm going to heaven and god". in the scientific context you say "the neural cortext is activated, and the brain's thought process slows down (the sense of peace). Pink mowse.pngGodotEn live 00:07, 2 January 2012 (UTC)
This, in addition because they are not only experienced in the context of religion. The experience can also be held outside of a religious context, in which case they are referred to as "spiritual experiences". I'm not making this up, this term is pretty well understood from what I understand in the neuroscience community. They are the same experience, but one of them has the unnecessary attachment of religious dogma and the other refers to just the base experience. --ShadowofLords (talk) 00:09, 2 January 2012 (UTC)
"Getting high is a simple material affair involving rearranging your brain chemistry." Pardon me, but everything you do is a simple material affair involving rearranging your brain chemistry. I don't subscribe to eliminative materialism, but all of your conscious mental states have a correlation to neurobiological states. Just because a flower is made of atoms (and those in turn of quarks) doesn't make us experience it as less beautiful. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 05:57, 2 January 2012 (UTC)
Is eliminative materialism related to logical positivism? Star of David.png Radioactive afikomen Please ignore all my awful pre-2014 comments. 06:20, 2 January 2012 (UTC)
Not directly, though they share a similar reductionist mindset. There are some good arguments in its favor, though, IMO, it is largely a dash of speculation (due to the rather young age of neuroscience) mixed with a bit of category mistake. — Unsigned, by: Nebuchadnezzar / talk / contribs 06:32, 2 January 2012 (UTC)

Spirituality and dope[edit]

Material has been repeatedly removed from this page pointing out the link between dope and the sort of "spirituality" involving feelings of "oneness with the Universe," etc., etc. Would it not be apropos to mention here that such pish-posh is most voluminously regurgitated by dopeys, or that a large majority of the religions that have existed in the world included at least some rites involving entheogens (which is why almost every form of dope that has been invented first saw use as an entheogen)? Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 05:39, 2 January 2012 (UTC)

I think this is another area that can be talked about but where we need to be especially careful to distinguish the relation between psychedelic experience brought on by drugs (LSD, psilocybin, peyote) and spiritual experiences. Research suggests that the two are highly related and often involve the same chemicals in the same locations. This probably explains why these drugs are so important in many religions today and the historical evidence of psychedelic usage in the Abrahamic religions. I think a section on the relation between spiritual experience and psychedelics should be included, so long as we can properly source them to scientific journals or papers. Also I find the use of your vocabulary to be ostentatious and pedantic. --ShadowofLords (talk) 05:57, 2 January 2012 (UTC)
Well, that is really not a ringing endorsement of "spiritual experiences," that a person is far more likely to have one when his brain is not fully functional.
I believe you mean "when his or her brain is functioning in a way outside of what is normally experienced". Any psychedelic drug (really any drug that affects the mind) alters the experience of consciousness in some way. So do feelings like happiness. It is possible to take a high dosage of morphine and have a "blissful experience", it is also possible to just happen to be in the right situation to feel it, or even possible to meditate and bring it about forcibly without drugs. Just because it can be easily achieved with drugs doesn't mean it is a bad thing, especially when achieved without drugs. Sam Harris (Ph.D in Neuroscience and one of the Four Horsemen of New Atheism) writes a bit on this (http://www.samharris.org/blog/item/drugs-and-the-meaning-of-life/), "Many people don’t realize that all psychoactive drugs modulate the existing neurochemistry of the brain—either by mimicking specific neurotransmitters or by causing the neurotransmitters themselves to be more active." --ShadowofLords (talk) 07:02, 2 January 2012 (UTC)
It is possible to take a high dosage of morphine... It is possible to take a dose of LSD and experience hallucinations, but you have to have schizophrenia or some other mental illness to experience one naturally. This is why a good deal of mystics in religions that do not use entheogens displayed symptoms consistent with some mental illness or another.
Just because it can be easily achieved with drugs doesn't mean it is a bad thing, especially when achieved without drugs. Perhaps. However, ascribing "it" to a divine source instead of the dope is a particularly nasty kind of self-delusion. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 06:29, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
Also I find the use of your vocabulary to... A translation of the sentence in question is, "Dopeys spew this dreck more than anyone else." Have you any attacks to make on the substance of that statement? Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 06:16, 2 January 2012 (UTC)
I understood what you were saying, but I didn't feel that point really needed to be addressed. If you are trying to construe spiritual experience as unimportant because many drug users talk about it, you aren't really making a convincing argument that I feel a need to address. I find that most people I know about who discuss world peace are smoking the reefer, but that doesn't mean every discussion about a possibility of world peace is somehow tainted (or even that relation to drugs somehow taints a conversation to begin with). --ShadowofLords (talk) 07:02, 2 January 2012 (UTC)
The fact that not every such conversation is tainted does not mean most of them are not; and, again, history shows a very strong link between dope and "spiritual experiences," with people mistaking the psychoactive effects of said dope for said "spiritual experiences." Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 06:29, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
Also, there is a discussion on the page about drugs and the mystical experience which can be interpreted as spirituality. What you wanted to suggest is that drugs are somehow an important part of spirituality. that is not the case, though in some people's lives, it *can* be the case. Also, i don't know where anyone is making endorsments one way or the other - whether a person is inducing this state of mind by spinning like a dervish, sleep deprivations like ZaZen monks, epilepsi like St. John of the Cross and St. Thressa of Avila, what makes it a spiritual experience for them is their personal outlook. Pink mowse.pngGodotEn live 07:55, 2 January 2012 (UTC)
What you wanted to suggest is that drugs are somehow an important part of spirituality. The edits, if you will examine them again, ascribed intoxication only to people who claimed to experience a "oneness with the Universe," a phenomenon that in the past has been associated with intoxication in religious tradition.
...what makes it a spiritual experience for them is their personal outlook. If that is true, the word is bullshit by definition. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 06:29, 7 January 2012 (UTC)

Happy experiences vs. Spiritual experiences[edit]

I think, contrary to what some think, "spiritual" experiences, and experiences of extreme happiness, are not the same. I think there are two reasons to suppose they are different:

  1. Subjective reports of those who claim to have experienced them. Of course, it's up to you whether you believe them; but the fact that many people report similar experiences supports the idea there is some kind of real experience being had here, and so if many of them say these experiences are subjectively different from mere extreme happiness, that has to have some weight
  2. I'm not as familiar as I'd like with the results of neuroscience, but I understand at least some studies suggest that there are unique aspects of brain function involved in spiritual experiences, which while they have something in common with mere extreme happiness, are not quite the same

Of course, this is just arguing about whether there really is a separate category we call "spiritual experiences". Whether or not they are ultimately spiritual in origin, or have some purely physical explanation, is a completely separate question from whether they exist. (((Zack Martin))) 11:11, 2 January 2012 (UTC)

Reworking the Article[edit]

So, the article seems to have expanded a little bit. I'm considering doing a small rewrite and reorganization of it. I somewhat like how it is split up in the introduction, so I think I might use that for a basis of the organization. Split the article up into three sections (with subsections if needed): the "Introspection" or whatever stuff, the "Woo-woo" Deepak crap, and then the "I feel embarrassed when I call myself religious" people. Does anybody have an objection to such an overhaul? --ShadowofLords (talk) 07:07, 7 January 2012 (UTC)

The division is good, but I still think we need to take a bit of a harder line against the first category. "Spirituality" is, after all, "concern for the unseen and intangible," and I think most of us are agreed that anyone making any positive assertions in this area needs a bucket of water over the head. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 07:12, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
I do agree that is a common usage of it, but that "concern for the unseen and intangible" bit seems to fall more into the "woo-woo" than the "introspection" stuff. The Wikipedia article on it lists three things it can refer to at the start: 1) the "clear and obvious woo-woo", 2) the "useful introspection on the nature of 'self' but let's be careful about the conclusions we draw" stuff, 3) and the "let's try thinking about ethics on a different level" stuff. --ShadowofLords (talk) 07:28, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
(ec)Sounds fine to me, but maybe you should try the rewrite in your userspace first if you want to make really dramatic changes to the article. I can't imagine anyone not having "spiritual" or "religious" experiences, but I (and I would assume other atheists/non-believers/whatever) don't feel the need to ascribe it to some supernatural or otherworldly entity. Actually, the idea that "spiritual" experiences are supernatural is one of the ways I think religion denigrates humanity. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 07:36, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
Um, we are talking about spirituality here, are we not? Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 07:38, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
Hence the scare quotes. Religious language has something of a monopoly on these subjective experiences. Maybe "transcendental" might be a more "secularized" version of "spiritual experience," though that still has religious connotations. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 07:42, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
Me, I prefer to use the old words. Religio, veneration for the Gods. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 07:59, 7 January 2012 (UTC)

"I can't imagine anyone not having "spiritual" or "religious" experiences." I've never had a "spiritual experience." I don't even know what such a thing is, and am still not satisfied that the people writing this article can even define the term in a meaningful way. PintOfStout Talk BRONIES! 14:33, 7 January 2012 (UTC)

That's the big problem I find with bullshit in general - people have a vague notion of a trope in their head, but what it means seems a little beyond anyone to explain. Though it's often made worse by the idea that such vagueness is synonymous with deep thinking. Scarlet A.pnggnostic 15:00, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
Gotta say, I'm kinda always bothered when intellectual people, (especially those who disagree with a concept, or religion) claim the term is "poorly used", "shouldn't be used that way", or "is badly understood". If you are writing something like a wiki, even a wiki with a point of view, it's not your job to say "the term sucks", for all you can, I suppose, say "the concept it represents, sucks". When you say "spirituality is too vague", that may or may not be true, but real people use it every day, and frankly, no one is saying "gosh, I don't know what they mean". When scientists talk about their personal spirituality, especially ones who are known atheists, no one asks "gosh, do they mean new age?" When buddhist monks say "I do not believe in god, in any afterlife, or even in the value of myself, but I am spiritual" no one associates that with woo. The entire first section of Wikipedia (where I stole the definition I used, by the way) is about this kind of self journey for understanding. And when POS was saying "well, I don't agree", that's fine, you don't, but you can't take YOUR view that spirituality must be woo, and apply it to people who use it as a term for this kind of inner journey.
The term sucks. It is sad that it must have associated religious connotation. But that is the baggage that we have when we as a wiki look at a term. We can rip apart the idiots, the new agers, etc., but you need to accept and deal with the fact that such a term is used in our daily english to address a specific human biological feeling that everyone has, cause it doesn't come from any belief, it comes from the brain. I would love for there to be a nice scientific term, but right now, this is the term we're stuck with. (didn't mean to ramble, I just have found it slightly puzzling how much some people fight against this term). Pink mowse.pngGodotDear god, fucking grow up 16:54, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
Fair point, actually - perhaps I'll hold back calling terms "vague" but they often really are. I suppose in the case you're talking about there, there isn't just one "spirituality" and it differs between people - almost to the point where everyone is "spiritual" because we all think and we all adapt our thoughts and we experience things (going on a journey, as it were). If that is the case, however, what use is it as a term? "I'm spiritual" conveys no information. Scarlet A.pngtheist 17:03, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
Yeah, that's the challenge. In a philo class, i would think you as the prof could say "this term is overly vague, and in fact, stupid. don't use it" or "define it very precisely if you really really HAVE to use it". But at a wiki, part of your job is to say "this term is all over the place, everyoen uses it - if only cause there's nothing better. you define it as best as you can **then** you attack it. :-) Pink mowse.pngGodotDear god, fucking grow up 17:29, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
That aim I can deal with. So... what is spirituality? (!!) Scarlet A.pngpostate 17:34, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
It's very difficult to describe tastes, but that doesn't mean they don't exist. This doesn't cover spiritual experiences as a whole, but Robert Burton in On Being Certain talks about the role of "feeling of knowing" judgments play in these experiences. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 17:13, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
The talk of spirituality like it is "vague" or saying "everyone is spiritual" seems to be more like the claims of woo-woo or the "I swear I'm not religious" people. I would say everyone is capable of spiritual experience, but not everyone has them or is spiritual (using spiritual to denote those people who focus some of their efforts into studying and achieving these experiences). Spirituality, when not used as a woo-woo or religious term, has more to do with: introspection, self-study of consciousness, and sometimes a combination of these into justification of ethics and principles (e.g. "I understand pain and recognize myself as only one human being living on a planet of others who feel pain, therefore inflicting pain on others seems genuinely wrong to me"). --ShadowofLords (talk) 17:25, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
Though with that non-woo definition, I'd question why one would call it spirituality. It would seem rather odd to directly associate it with strange beliefs. Scarlet A.pngbomination 17:30, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
"I understand pain and recognize myself as only one human being living on a planet of others who feel pain, therefore inflicting pain on others seems genuinely wrong to me." That's not spirituality, bozo. We already have a perfectly good word for that. It's called empathy. PintOfStout Talk BRONIES! 17:32, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
Yes, but empathy can be understood in ways outside of neuroscience, evolutionary game theory, and chemical reactions in the brain. It also can be come to be understood through serious introspection on "why" we should be empathetic. Spirituality isn't the claim that inflicting pain is inherently wrong, it is a method for understanding the claim on a personal level. --ShadowofLords (talk) 17:54, 7 January 2012 (UTC)


ADK - why does one call it spirituality - a legacy, i suspect. That is what people called "deep thoughts" and it's stuck. I think everyone would be happier (everyone being athists who are talking about their feelings when looking out at space so deep it makes their own life meaningless and meaningful all at the same time) but such term does not yet exist, so they "run home to maman" as the saying goes. They fall back on old tropes and memes.
Shadow - everyone is "capible" of having this biological effect when we talk about the mystical experience. Everyone might look at the stars and find something deeply philo or life changing in them. How they define or relate to those experience, though, is through their world view. and if they are not "open" (god, what a judgmental term, i don't mean it that way) to anything spiritual, that's not what they will experience. Despite what old world science likes to say, much of our personal human reality is fully dependent on how we see things. Even what aught to be tangable things, like a headache, can be mitigated by our thoughts our perceptions or interactions. I have a headache, you give me a placebo, or tell me a story that takes my mind off it, and i no longer have that head ache does not make the head ache not real, nor does it make the cure real. It's all about perception. (which by the way, sucks when linguists are trying to figure out our reality. hehe) Pink mowse.pngGodotDear god, fucking grow up 17:36, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
This could well be part of the problem. Because you run to old tropes and memes some of the connotations come across whether they make sense or not. Scarlet A.pngmoral 17:40, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
Yup. it probably happens most in these religious/spirtual relms. I've seen Du Sutoy, mathmatician, say "I look at these patterns of numbers in our universe and say to myself - this, this is what god is for me." he doesn't mean to suggest any sense of god in any way. he's not a vitrolic "new athist" but he's sure as all hell an atheist.... but the language, the tropes stick. OR you are in some way, trying to subconciously communicate your profound feelings to people who have those profound feelings only for religion. I can see that as well. When I was under the stars, with my first so-called "mystical experince" (i'd been hiking to the top of a 14er for nearly 8 hours, and virtually fell over from exhaustion under the stars), that sense of place in the world was so profound, so compelling the only thing I'd heard of like it, was in religious terms. (I've heard musicians who have "hit" it, just perfectly say 'godly' about their session). that need to explain how very compelling X or Y is, might be why we use religious terms. but again, because of baggage with religion. Pink mowse.pngGodotDear god, fucking grow up 17:45, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
There was a debate with Stephen Fry where he said "God" was a powerful word and image to conjure up when needed; exclaiming "oh God" when you do something intense, for instance. But I'm thinking more like when someone says "X is real". What is real to people? You might say "God is real" but when pushed it's a different category entirely to how "this table is real" or "this computer is real" or in slightly more emergent ways "the internet is real". The connotations of "real" meaning "existing", "is there", "is in a state of being" exist... but the observable qualities of "real" being something you can interact with, affect, and be affected by are gone. Yet do those connotations make any sense without the observations? Hence my main problem of spirituality when people talk of "something more", they've kept this notion that this "something more" exists somewhere but they can't at all say anything else useful about it. Scarlet A.pnggnostic 17:55, 7 January 2012 (UTC)
Both "real" and "useful" are very loaded terms (not in the sense we use here, as politically charged, but loaded as in 'carry tons of personal meaning'). Most people, despite what "should" or "could" be, don't give a shit that terms are vague, or not everyone knows exactly precisly what is meant by X. Most people never consider that the word X might carry subtle to extreme meaning shifts depending on the listener. "real" means something simple to them. it exists. They don't go father, they don't need to. You and I do, cause it's amusing. amusing is no more "useful" than the dude who said "real" in the first place. I am in a church pew, and am struck by this sudden sense that the world is one and i'm part of it. it is clearly "not of this world" (and that does mean something ADK, i can't tell you what it means, but everyone understands that a dream is not part of this world, cause it just feels different. so do so-called transcendent moments... again, it's likely that the brain is litearlly blacking out for a second, but that means things are not firing "normally, so it means something to people). When you try to explain it, you may or may not be successful, but the average every day guy or gal who has now had his "religious experience" doesn't care that it means nothing to you, or that he cannot explain much less prove that it is not "normal" and "real". I think you've heard, or sensed some of my frustration with BigBrainPhiloDudes, and that's the idea that they are somehow superior to everyone, cause they "think" and everyoen else just "reacts". they want words to have some kind of precision - in a world where precision is unobtainable, and rather irrelevant. I cannot be precise about why a piece of music haunts me. But it does, and that feeling is lovely to me. The mind does not exist in the relm of philosophiers, but equally in the relm of art, music, dreams, sensations, desires, enjoyments that are not articulate. but are no less real. Pink mowse.pngGodotDear god, fucking grow up 18:04, 7 January 2012 (UTC)

Why were the following lines removed: "Spirituality" is a code word of sorts. If someone uses it in a conversation, generally, it is shorthand for one of the following statements:

   "I have a confession to make — I believe in God! I'm so sorry!"
   "Your 'science' cannot explain my feelings, or, transcendental experiences!"
   "I'm a New Age quack. Give me all your money." ?

They are pretty accurate as far as the science community knows, and back then gave the article it's charm. The first and second lines are awesome, yet simple. — Unsigned, by: 186.22.227.169 / talk / contribs

I suspect that they were removed because certain of our editors found them too accurate for comfort. Mjollnir.svgListenerXTalkerX 05:10, 7 April 2012 (UTC)
He,he, seems to be the case. Every 'spiritual' person I have had the 'pleasure' to speak with falls in one of the above. Most particularly the second, althrough occasinally the first or third as well. — Unsigned, by: 186.22.227.169 / talk / contribs 04:16, 11 April 2012 (UTC)