BY STAN KONTOS
A lot of people ask what is the difference between being spiritual and being religious? It is not an easy question to answer so I will give it my best. My own personal experience has been that early on in my formative years I had a religious outlook and as I have gotten older (I’m only middle age, and still have plenty of years in me) it has developed into a spiritual outlook. I will explain spirituality vs. religious both from an existing and ongoing Christian perspective (I can be religious through a faith or I can be spiritual) however I respect that each of us has different views and it is all a part of being open minded and developing ourselves to grow.
When I was younger, religious to me meant doing things in a certain way without really knowing why or without really questioning why I was doing it. A lot of it was done out of fear or guilt. It was really a man-made interpretation imposed on me and a way of getting people to behave in a certain way. Basically you do it because you do not know any better or a better way. It is a bit like a daughter cooking a dish a certain way because that’s the way mum used to cook it and that’s how she was taught. If we delve historically, we find out mum cooked the dish this way because grandma cooked it this way. And grandma cooked it this way because great grandma taught her this way. And so forth. However when we do things without questioning it generally is not very beneficial for us. To get out of a religious context and get the most out of a renewed spiritual pathway, we need to experience it, embed the experience, allow it to transform us, and then notice how we become more spiritual in nature.
Spirituality is a change not only in mindset but also in our heart. So we experience a mind-heart transformation that changes our personality without us having to try, such that we do not need to operate out of fear or guilt anymore, but rather we begin to operate out of faith which involves a beautiful combination of love, joy, peace and hope. This transformation happens because we apply strategies that have worked for others and generally these strategies involve being open minded with our outlook, stilling our mind through meditation, and learning the process of prayerfulness (how to pray).
We then allow the unconscious spiritual experience from doing these three simple things to alter our thinking and our heart and then our outlook changes. This is accompanied with a change in natural emotional states (we naturally transcend from feeling fear, sadness, hurt, guilt, and anger) to being calm, loving, joyful, peaceful and positive in our thoughts, words and deeds.
The spiritual (spirit filled) path is of course the path that leads to enlightenment and a more abundant life as living now without negative emotions (about 95% of the time there are no traces of negativity) allows us to be more productive in our work or business, wiser with our decisions especially under stress, a calmer influence with those in our environment, a nicer person with our relationships, and forward thinking in our life approach.
I hope this sheds some light into the importance of incorporating spiritual practice into your daily life as part of the balanced approach in becoming a more effective human being and leader.
Live with passion, stay of life’s purpose and always be at peace.
As South Australia’s foremost authority on “Peak Life Performance” and “Leadership Psychology”, Stan has a passion for the development of Human Potential through the use of Rapid Change Technologies. Stan is a prolific reader of books and material on self empowerment and has attended numerous programs around the world on personal development, management, marketing, public speaking, and wealth creation. He is a worldwide accredited NLP Trainer (Neurolinguistic Programming).
His areas of passion include:
- Coaching: Business, Executive and Personal
- Mentoring: Leaders, Managers and Management teams
- Therapy for rapid improvements in stress and personal blocks
- Leadership Development
- Life Enhancing Seminar Programs teaching Success Strategies and Personal Empowerment
Stan is an entrepreneur with business interests in various states across Australia.
Stan focuses on continuous and never ending improvement of himself and his teams of partners and associates as well as selfless contribution to others. He is an inspiring and motivating speaker, author, coach, and entrepreneur. He desires to expand people’s lives and to expand his charitable quests.
Best wishes to you as you live a life of passion, purpose and peace as an open minded progressive human being.
Stan is considered to be one’s “ultimate” life and business coach.