Cards =/= “spirituality”

Mr. Natural by R. Crumb

Mr. Natural by R. Crumb

As a rule, I don’t talk about religion here and for good reason: your beliefs are a personal decision, just like your decisions about things like whether to have sex with someone. And while this post references religion, it’s really about WORDS.

Lately I’m seeing a tendency online to refer to thing like card reading, numerology, color correspondences, essential oils, aromatherapy, flower essences, crystals, pendulums, astrology, etc. as “spiritual things”. Now don’t get me wrong, you can do some of these things in the context of religious practice, but they’re NOT SPIRITUAL IN AND OF THEMSELVES.

Merriam Webster defines “spiritual” as:

1: of, relating to, consisting of, or affecting the spirit : incorporeal

2: a: of or relating to sacred matters

b: ecclesiastical rather than lay or temporal

3: concerned with religious values

4: related or joined in spirit

5 a: of or relating to supernatural beings or phenomena

b: of, relating to, or involving spiritualism : spiritualistic

Soooo –

Invoking a spirit or deity to serve as an oracle = spiritual. The Nechung Oracle*, for instance, would fall into this category.

Pulling cards in an attempt to check up on your boyfriend = not spiritual. Unless, perhaps, you’re doing it with the same level of extensive preparation and ceremony that’s done with the Nechung Oracle…in which case you probably wouldn’t be using cards to spy on your boyfriend.

Yoga, for the purpose of linking with a deity, done in the traditional manner = spiritual.

Yoga, as part of your exercise routine, because you want to look and feel great = not spiritual. Healthy and beneficial, but not spiritual.

And so on. Dabbing lavender oil on your pillow for better sleep, casting a horoscope, etc. aren’t religious practice, And I’m not saying anyone has to DO religious practice, what I’m saying is to quit calling self-indulgent stuff “spiritual”. It’s not.

It’s fine to DO self-indulgent stuff – we all do – just don’t be hypocritical about it.

And FFS, if you don’t know what a word means, LOOK IT UP. Learn definitions – especially if you’re writing. You don’t want to be referred to as “Derpina”.

That is all. You may return to facebook. 😛

* http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nechung_Oracle

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