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In the last ten years, people’s interest in the different types of spirituality has increased substantially. With it, the amount of information on this topic has grown quite a lot.
It makes it even more difficult to know which spiritual path is the best for you. You may know which type of sport you enjoy the most or which type of food you need to avoid.
But when it's time to take care of your spiritual wellness, you may not know where to start.
From my point of view, it’s totally understandable.
It’s a complex topic, and that’s why, in this article, I will explain to you the different types of spirituality and spiritual practices.
Let’s start with a simple one – how to define spirituality?
What You Will Learn
- What Is Spirituality?
- Types of Spirituality
- Ways of Spiritual Practices
- Final Thoughts on Types of Spirituality and Spiritual Practices
What Is Spirituality?
Spirituality is the place within yourselves where your soul can find a sense of peace. It’s a concept completely liberated from any rules, institutions or hierarchy and it’s dedicated to the human soul.
Spirituality is a personal experience that creates a system of personal beliefs when searching for the meaning of life. It stands for something greater in life than the physical or material world.
Spirituality is also a way of dealing with everyday challenges in life and connecting with something bigger than yourselves.
Being spiritual can mean different things to different people. For some, spirituality can be related to religion and even higher power. For others, it can be a non-religious experience such as connecting with nature, art, yoga, meditation, etc.
Those experiences present different types of spirituality and practices.
So let’s talk more about them.
Types of Spirituality
Getting in touch with yourselves is the core principle of spirituality and there are various paths for a person to achieve that.
Here are some of the most common ones:
#1. Mystical Spirituality
This type of spirituality is focused on the intuitional part of the soul. People who have mystical spirituality believe that there’s a greater unity to every experience in life.
Every experience goes beyond the material or physical world, and everything can be brought into one greater unity. For example, people with this type of spirituality may support the idea that everything happens for a reason. There’s a greater explanation behind everything and that would be what unites all the different experiences.
#2. Authoritarian Spirituality
This type of spirituality is believing in a hierarchical structure of things or in authority.
Often, this type of spirituality is associated with religious beliefs. There are cases when not following the spiritual rules of religion may cause conflicts.
People with authoritarian spirituality can develop a form of fundamentalist religion.
Fundamentalists believe that their religion is the most truthful one. They tend to exclude every other religion which, unfortunately, can be the cause for radical religious terrorism.
#3. Intellectual Spirituality
The core belief behind this type of spirituality is knowledge. Intellectually spiritual people are prone to gaining knowledge of spiritual theories and analyzing the information they get their hands on.
One form of this spiritual journey is studying theology, for example. However, this type of spirituality is not solely related to studying religion. Any knowledge that helps people improve their spirituality is a form of intellectual spirituality.
#4. Service Spirituality
This is one of the most common types of spirituality. It’s because people experience spiritual peace when they serve others.
There are many ways to achieve this spirituality, but the core of it is helping others without expecting nothing in return. Doing something that will benefit someone without getting something back is a common way for people to get in touch with their spiritual selves.
#5. Social Spirituality
Experiencing spiritual awakening when you are surrounded by other people explains this type of spirituality.
Many people practice being around other people when searching for greater spiritual purpose in life.
Being in religious groups is one way to experience this spirituality. However, this can also be achieved with any other form of a group – exercising, nature-related activities, meditation, etc.
Since there are multiple types of spirituality, there are also various ways of spiritual practices too.
Ways of Spiritual Practices
There are also 5 spiritual practices and with them, anyone can achieve a true spiritual self:
Path of Knowledge
The main idea behind this practice is the power knowledge gives to people. This practice revolves around the idea that ultimate liberation can happen with acquiring knowledge.
This is not only about learning new things about the world but most importantly, knowledge about yourselves. Self- reflection, who you are, why you do the things the way you do are the main principles of this spiritual practice.
To achieve this, people use methods like studying, meditation and contemplation.
Some of the most famous approaches are Buddhism, Jnana Yoga, Kabbalah.
Path of Devotion
This spiritual practice has liberation from your ego as its core element. This is partly because many people who consider themselves religious will use some of these methods to express their spirituality.
However, it’s not always connected with religion. People also devote themselves to a higher power source or their consciousness to experience spiritual freedom.
Some of those methods are chanting, praying, mantras, and belief to become more spiritually aware.
Path of Meditation
Meditation is one of the most common methods people are using to get better in touch with their true spirit. Alongside meditation are breathing techniques, asceticism, and teacher relationship.
The basis of this spiritual practice is calmness. People believe that whatever they accumulate through their life can be channeled through these methods. This way, dealing with everyday life challenges becomes easier because there’s a way to let go of all the negative thoughts.
Raja Yoga, Nada Yoga, and Buddhism are some examples of this spiritual practice.
Path of Service
Similar to the service type of spirituality, this spiritual practice is about active selflessness.
The ultimate liberation can happen when helping and expecting nothing in return.
These people are liberated from any rules and rely only on giving rather than receiving.
For them, this is the only way to redeem themselves from any challenge or negative situation in life.
Volunteering, helping in Red Cross, helping those in need, working with people or children with disabilities – any type of selfless act falls under this category.
Path of Energy
More than a combination of different methods and core elements, this practice revolves around the idea of purification of your body and mind.
There are all kinds of methods, such as meditation, breathing, somatic techniques, and teacher relationship.
A person can achieve spiritual guidance in this practice in many ways. Some people use ritual behavior or activity to achieve this, others may concentrate solely on improving their physical health.
Whatever the action, the goal is to achieve purified both body and mind, liberated from the toxic elements you encounter in everyday lives.
Final Thoughts on Types of Spirituality and Spiritual Practices
Taking care of your spiritual health is equally important as your physical health.
Dealing with everyday challenges becomes easier once you’ll have a proven spiritual method to free yourself from toxins.
That’s why there are 5 different types of spirituality, so everyone can find the one that suits them best. There are also different methods to achieve spiritual peace. Find the one that is most true to you and you will achieve spiritual calmness.
Finally, one proven way to improve your happiness and life satisfaction is to focus on goals that truly matter. To get started, check out this FREE printable worksheet and a step-by-step process that will help you set effective SMART goals.