Spirituality is a worldview or way of life that seeks to address people’s deeper questions about the meaning of life, and the meaning of their own existence. It usually involves a belief in a higher form of intelligence or consciousness running the universe, and/or a belief in the idea of life after death.
The beliefs and practices that people use to express their spirituality can be extremely diverse. They can range from the practice of certain religions, such as Christianity or Hinduism, to the new age movement, psychic powers, Astrology and paranormal phenomena. It also includes activities such as prayer, meditation, yoga and the expansion of one’s consciousness.
A lot of people are afraid to explore their spirituality because they think it is a separate thing from their religion or faith, which is not the case. Basically, if you are religious, spirituality is about deepening your connection to what makes your faith meaningful and important to you, and it can also help you to better cope with the stress in your life. If you are not religious, spirituality can be a place where you can find hope and meaning in your life.
Research has shown that a personal sense of spirituality is protective against depression, especially during late adolescence. Specifically, a person’s spirituality, measured by the Spirituality Scale (Delaney 2005) – a 23 item questionnaire that conceptualizes spirituality along the dimensions of meaning and purpose, interconnectedness, inner resources and transcendence – was associated with lower levels of subthreshold depression symptoms.