3 Ways To Practice Spirituality Every Day As A Non-Religious Person

How do you practice spirituality?

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How do you practice spirituality in your life?

Poet Mary Oliver captures the essence of spirituality in just 12 words: "Listen — are you breathing just a little, and calling it a life?"

In the line above, she reminds us that life is about so much more than just taking breaths.

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How do you practice spirituality?

Spirituality is hard to define. It's not tangible, nor is there a universal definition.

Jewish scholar David Ariel considers spirituality to be "heart knowledge."

Catholic educator Regina Coll refers to spirituality as awareness that daily life is more than what meets the eye.

Jeremiah Abrams, a Jungian therapist, suggests spirituality is a longing, a yearning to know the meaning of our life.

For some, spirituality gives life more meaning.

Many definitions of spirituality incorporate the idea of a way of being in the world, where we journey toward wholeness with vitality and awareness.


One thing is for sure — if you practice spirituality, life has more meaning and sparkle than, "You are born, then you die."

People who practice spirituality tend to have a certain vibe about them. They are "chill," serene, and content. They are truly alive and exude peace.

Practicing spirituality is your own expression of the divine.

The recognition and experience of profound connection to yourself and other beings. Additional dimensions to spirituality include compassion, dignity, respect, and grace.

Your spirituality may be different from your neighbor’s, and that's part of the beauty of it. Different, but the same.

The oneness of universal humanity is the essence of spirituality.

Anyone can practice spirituality, whether they identify as a religious person or a nonreligious person.


Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, a philosopher and priest, reminds us that, "We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience."

In other words, you, like everyone else, have a spiritual nature that's infinite. Human beings arrive in the world this way — as spiritual entities in a human form.

How you understand and honor that inherent spirituality is up to you. It doesn't have to be a religious practice.

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Spirituality is about presence and awareness, honoring the oneness that connects the universe and all its inhabitants. The sanctity of all living creatures.


Being a spiritual person is synonymous with the goal of loving yourself and others — including the planet, animals, nature, and other people.

Not surprisingly, recent research suggests spirituality is good for your mental health. For among its 3,000 participants, experiencing sacred moments was associated with greater levels of mental health.

Practicing spirituality every day doesn't have to involve a sacred text or attending any kind of organized religious event.

Instead, here are 3 concrete ways to practice spirituality every day as a non-religious person.

1. Create a daily morning ritual.

This may include meditation, drinking tea or coffee, journaling, sitting with your dog, walking in the fresh air, or quiet contemplation. This kind of routine helps to ground you and connect you to yourself.


It provides a fresh start to the day and opens up space within you to access deeper parts of yourself.

2. Have a daily, weekly, or monthly intention.

Perhaps something like slowing down your pace in the world, creating more family time, or deliberately tuning into your surroundings through your senses.

3. Consider who you would choose if you could have a personal guru.

Pick someone from history or the present who you deem to have a spiritual nature that you would like to emulate.


Notice that none of these suggestions are religious. Certainly, though, if you want to incorporate attending church or synagogue services into your spiritual practice, go right ahead!

That's the beauty of practicing spirituality.

The practice itself, as you define it, is what brings you the vitality, awareness, and awe of being.

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Dr. Elayne Daniels is a clinical psychologist in the Boston area. Along with evidence-based methods, she enjoys utilizing mindfulness and other spiritual practices in the treatment of eating disorders and other psychological disorders.