Relevance of Spirituality in Today's Global Setting.

Author: 
Dr. Ranjeet Singh Bharaj

 

Most religions believe in One God and that he is the Creator of our Universe. One has to marvel at His Creation:--the Earth, the Sun the Moon, Stars and other Galaxies all exist in harmony.

There are so many things to be grateful for in life. We should take time to reflect on them and acknowledge how fortunate we all are for family and friends and endless opportunities; but we are also aware of all the millions of people suffering all over the world from natural disasters or self made constant wars.

People need to believe in religion. Religion and spirituality are intertwined. Religion consists of scriptures, temples, churches, mosques and communities whilst spirituality is defined in numerous ways including the belief in a greater power operating in the universe that is greater than oneself, a sense of interconnection with all living creatures and an awareness of the purpose and meaning in life and the development of personal values. It is a way to find meaning, hope, comfort and our inner peace either through meditation or yoga in your life.

Although spirituality is often associated with religion, personal spirituality can also be developed through music, art or a connection with nature. People also find spirituality through acts of compassion, selflessness, altruism and the experience of inner peace. Many people especially the western people have become interested in the role of spirituality so they spend some time in the Ashrams to learn. They come back having experienced inner peace. This is essential because in the West life has become very hectic and there is no time to spend on ourselves. Many westerners are also becoming interested in the role of spirituality in their health and health care, perhaps because of dissatisfaction with the impersonal nature of our current medical system, and the realization that medical science does not have answers to every question about health and wellness.

In most healing traditions, body and spirit were intertwined. Today a growing number of studies reveal that spirituality may play a bigger role in the healing process than the medical community previously thought.

Spiritual practices tend to improve coping skills and social support and foster feeling of optimism and hope. This promotes healthy behavior that reduces depression and anxiety-the cause of many illnesses- and encourages a sense of relaxation.

By alleviating stressful feelings and promoting healing, one’s spirituality can possibly influence the immune system as in AIDS, cardiovascular system, hormonal and nervous system.

Those people who have faith in God and compassion towards others, possess a sense of inner peace and have a better chance of long term recovery.

American scientists have said that yoga and meditation particularly the age old Indian practice of "Kirtan" for ten minutes may help boost memory and fight Alzheimer’s disease.

Thus forgiveness, love, social support and prayers with a strong spiritual component such as demonstrated in Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) shows that spiritual discipline may be especially effective for drug and alcoholic addiction.

Results from several  researches have shown that people with strong religious and spiritual beliefs heal faster from surgery,  and are able to  lower blood pressure and cope better with chronic illnesses such as arthritis, diabetes, heart disease, cancer and spinal cord injuries.