spiritual people

What are spiritual people?

This is one of the few habits which has been studied scientifically. Numerous surveys show that spiritual people live longer (on average), manage stress better, and are generally happier. They also cope with potentially terminal illnesses more  effectively.

By ‘spiritual’ I mean those beliefs through which we live by a higher purpose in (or beyond) this life. A purpose which gives meaning and direction to existence. This could be based on formal religious belief, but for many it does not. While some people have a deep sense of the divine at work in themselves and in others, some find this hard to understand. For many people it is enough for them to appreciate the beauty and intelligence in nature and its species; or in the revelations of art, science, mathematics and philosophy. For others still it is enough to know that they are giving service: for the family, for the community, for the environment, or for future generations.

Why resilient people are spiritual people

One reason resilient people are spiritual people is that spiritual values are linked to field consciousness; an enlarged, sometimes ecstatic state of consciousness, in which we feel connected to something higher than ourselves. Having field consciousness helps put the ego into perspective. When we listen to its worries and fantasies from our higher self they often seem trivial and pointless. Thus enabling us to defuse from them more easily.

Spiritual values also teach us perseverance. When adversity strikes, as it always will, spiritual people will connect to their sense of a deeper purpose in life and keep going. The sense of serving something greater than ourselves preserves us from despair. And despair is the enemy of resilience.

Transpersonal beliefs and values aid resilience is that they provide us with a refuge in times of crisis: in tragedy, illness and death. They enable us to keep going even when we feel like giving up. They give us the strength to support others trapped in hopelessness.

A deeper reason resilient people are spiritual people relates to our passion. To fight for a cause, serve others, do important work in the arts and sciences, or connect to a higher power brings an inner strength and will to live that is inspiring to others and fulfilling to you. And, generally speaking, a fulfilled life is not only a happier life but a healthier one too.


Photo by Luke Braswell on Unsplash



3 thoughts on “9 habits of resilience: resilient people are spiritual people”
  1. Nice concise list of resilience traits until the last one which I think rather undermines the thrust of the first 8. Being a realist and owning things etc how does that gel with belief in literal higher powers of any sort other than science and nature. I don’t think there is a need for wishy washy higher purposes beyond life to be healthy and resilient. I think it rather encourages people to abdicate responsibility for themselves and life events not to take control of them and respond in a healthy way. Just my thoughts, no problem with what others choose to believe but I don’t think it fits with resilience personally.

    1. Thanks for your appreciative comments.

      Your picture of wishy-washy people who abdicate responsibility is not one that I recognise amongst the many spiritual people (religious and non-religious) that I have met over the years. Quite the opposite in that most take their responsibilities to themselves, their families, their communities and to the Earth with the utmost seriousness. I can also think of many atheists who live unhealthy life-styles and who take no responsibility for themselves or others at all.

      I think we are agreed that resilience is a matter of individual strength. In my view we also become stronger when we sustain good relationships that help us through troubled times. And when we have a purpose beyond ourselves. That doesn’t have to be ‘religious’ in the ordinary sense, as I hope I have made clear in the article.

  2. John, on the last point you made – In my view we also become stronger when we sustain good relationships that help us through troubled times.

    I can attest this to be true because in maintaining our relationship you have helped me get through some very troubled times.

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