Friday, March 12, 2010

friday five: spirituality and religion

Inspired by what she is hearing at a conference by Diana Butler Bass, MomPriest at RevGals invites us to consider five thoughts, ideas or practices that we consider to be "religious," and five thoughts, ideas, or practices that we consider to be "spiritual." For example one thought about religion might be that it is "salvation" Or an idea about religion might be that it it is an "institution" and a religious practice might be "going to church." An example of spiritual thought might be a phrase from a poem, a spiritual idea might be the inspiration for a piece of art and a spiritual practice might be meditation.

So, five thoughts, ideas, or practices that are religious....and then five thoughts, ideas or practices that are spiritual. OR are they the same thing to you?

Without spending sufficient time to consider the differences between thoughts and ideas particularly, this is truly a challenge. And after reading some other responses to this ff I think I have totally missed the mark of what we were asked to do. But this is where I went this morning, so here goes:

Religious thoughts, ideas or practices

1) Once upon a time someone asked what I thought religion was. After pondering that for a moment this was my conclusion: religion is a man-made construct to explain the mysteries of the world and understand itself in relation to those mysteries and the creator of the same. Within that context, a religious thought would be that there is a higher power.

2 and 3) A religious idea is that we acknowledge the source of creation by means of either personal or communal expression (practice).

4) A religious practice is a funeral rite.

5) A religious idea is that God desires justice for all creation.

Spiritual thoughts, ideas or practices

1) A spiritual thought is that we are all connected to one another through the incarnation of what is divine.

2) A spiritual idea is movement in response to the presence of the Spirit.

3) A spiritual practice is breath prayer.

4) A spiritual thought is that the above photograph of the candle puts me in mind of the presence of God.

5) St. Patrick's Breastplate (I adore this) is a spiritual idea:

I arise today
Through the strength of heaven;
Light of the sun,
Splendor of fire,
Swiftness of wind,
Depth of sea,
Stability of earth,
Firmness of rock.

I arise today
Through God’s strength to pilot me;
God’s might to uphold me,
God’s wisdom to guide me,
God’s hand to guard me.

Afar or anear,
Alone or in a multitude.

Christ shield me today
Against wounding;

Christ with me,
Christ before me,
Christ behind me,

Christ on my right,
Christ on my left,

Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ in me.

I arise today
Through the mighty strength
Of the Lord of Creation.
(St. Patrick)


Jayne said...

I think your explanations are right on the mark actually. :c)

Jan said...

I'm glad you wrote. You put more thought into it than I did, and I love the ending. Thanks, Anne.

Muthah+ said...

I can be a part of your religion.

Mompriest said...

Actually I had no specific context for responding in mind when I wrote this...rather I was hoping folks would take this and go where ever they were led...that said, I love what you wrote...great reflection!

RevDrKate said...

Oh yes, very very good on all fronts!

Hot Cup Lutheran said...

oh yes the breastplate of st.patrick... beautiful isn't it?!

Mavis said...

Enjoyed your post very much.

Barbara B. said...

I was unfamiliar with St. Patrick's Breastplate! Thanks for posting it!

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