What is Spirituality?
Spirituality is one of those words that it is very difficult to pin down. However, according to the online dictionary, the word spirituality is a noun and means: “the quality of being concerned with the human spirit or soul as opposed to material or physical things”.
One online example that may shed some light on the topic is the following:
Two Travelling Angels Story
Two angels go on a journey and at nightfall they arrive at a mansion… requesting to spend the night.
The owners tell them to go away! The angels plead with the owners and are reluctantly given a place to rest in the cold unfinished basement. While down there, the one angel sees a hole in the wall and patches it. The other angel baffled asks…Why when these people treated us so poorly, would you help them? The angel responded… Things aren’t always as they appear.
The following day they continue on the journey.
At nightfall they arrive at an old farmhouse, where the only livelihood is one single cow. After the angels request to stay the night….The owners welcome them in, serve them the food they have, and offer them their own bed. However, the following morning when they awoke, they saw the cow lying dead in the field. The angel again baffled asks…Why when these people treated us so kindly did the cow have to die? The angel responded… Things aren’t always as they appear.
In the first home (the mansion) …I realized the owners suffered with greed and what I found behind that wall was gold…so I patched it up… Things aren’t always as they appear.
In the second home (the old farmhouse) the angel of death came for the wife and instead I gave the cow… Things aren’t always as they appear.
Can Spirituality Be Used in Counselling? And if so…How?
In short yes (as long as it is the client’s spiritual beliefs and not beliefs imposed upon them-otherwise it may be more damaging in the long run).
Spirituality may be able to assist someone with a different perspective towards a situation (as in the example above), towards another, and/or towards self.
For some: Spirituality may be a means to cope as a line of defense (e.g. against feeling powerlessness and/or hopelessness), it may be a source of comfort and/or reassurance (during the hills and valleys experienced/endured in life), it may be a sense of peace and/or contentment within ourselves, or it may be the very essence and/or understanding of one’s identity.