A large number of people describe themselves as ‘spiritual but not religious.’ But practice of spiritual virtues can coexist with a detached understanding of traditional religious claims; that religious belief is defined by the practice of virtues. Spirituality may have religious fervor but it is not religion totally.
Spirituality inspires to be more mindful, accepting, grateful, compassionate, and lovingly connected to others. These virtues oppose both the conventional social ego's attachment and arrogance, and any habitual, unreflective religiosity.
What is Spirituality:
Word spirituality derives from the word spirit. There is an individual spirit (individual soul) and a Supreme Spirit (God).
Spirituality is inner journey to establish connection with the divine. In Sanskrit, Spirituality is known as Adhyatma. It is derived from two words Adhi and Atman (Atmanaha). Adhi means pertaining to the topic and Atman means the Soul. The spiritual attitude is to find meaning for every suffering. The moment the explanation for suffering is found, suffering becomes less.
What is spirituality in Hinduism:
Spiritual goal in Hinduism is renunciation. Renunciation of fame, dearest ones, and properties, even one’s own bodies i.e. ego.
There are different methods of spiritual practices such as prayer, meditation, yajna, chanting of names or mantras, etc. The spiritual practices should be done minimum twice a day i.e. morning and evening. At one time, it was four times a day, then it became three times a day.
The gist of all worships is to be pure and to do good to others. Worship means entering a mood of purity and holiness. Full purity comes only from a condition of desirelessness. In the early stage of spiritual life, we desire things and God also. By connecting desires to the God, the mind goes up gradually. Real devotion comes when we look upon people as the manifestation of God and while serving the former, look at his divine core. As per philosophy of Vedanta, Brahman alone is real, the universe is ultimately unreal and the individual soul is no other than the Universal soul.
Why to be spiritual as per Hinduism:
The body and mind are transient and have limitations. But the soul (Atman) is permanent and repository of all strength, hope and energy. Each soul is potentially divine. By attuning oneself to the self, one could gain strength, hope and energy.
The liberation (salvation, mukti) is ultimate aim of life. The liberation is the freedom-physical, mental and spiritual. Political, social, cultural, and other freedoms are only the fragmentary aspects of real freedom. In the age of mobile, the freedom of movement and free thinking has been restricted. But the freedom is cry of soul.
How to be spiritual as per Hinduism:
The spiritual disciplines in Hinduism are grouped according to the predominance of various faculties of human being viz. intellect, emotions, will power and activity. Different faculties are dominant in people of different temperament. Based on that, people having dominance of intellect, may adopt spiritual discipline of Jnana yoga; likewise for people of emotions, Bhakti yoga; people of will power, Raja yoga and people of activity, Karma yoga. But all the yogas have same destination and merge into “Renunciation & Surrender to almighty”.
The four paths are defined as under:
The second method is to practice little detachment. An average man cannot work without definite gain. But the idea of physical gain gradually is replaced by other types of subtler gains, such aesthetic enjoyment and intellectual pleasure. These are also gains, but of a subtler type. These are spiritual gains. Sri Krishna said in Gita, “Whatever you do, offer to me.” Then you will free from bad effects of all karma and also from the good effects. Both are bondage. Both credit and discredit should go to the master. Normally, people take credit and offer discredit to the almighty.
Reference: Vedanta & Vivekananda by Swami Swahananda