Utne Blogs > Mind and Body

Teasing Apart Spirituality and Religion

 by Bennett Gordon

Tags: Spirituality, religion, happiness, LiveScience, the Tablet,

Spiritual children are in general more happy than children who don’t have spiritual aspects to their lives, according to research from the University of British Columbia. Religious practices, on the other hand, don’t have the same positive effect. LiveScience reports, “Religion is just one institutionalized venue for the practice of or experience of spirituality,” and it’s spirituality, not religion, that predicts happiness.

That dichotomy between spirituality an religion isn’t particularly helpful to Marjorie Ingall, writing for the new Jewish online magazine the Tablet. She writes, “I’m not so sure you can tease apart spirituality and religion.” Many religions fuse together aspects of family life, social justice, and community making the split between spirituality and religion nearly impossible to define.

Sources: LiveScienceThe Tablet