According to Wikipedia, the word "spirit" means "the animating or vital principle in man and animals." It's derived from the Old French word espirit which comes from the Latin word spiritus, meaning "soul, courage, vigor, breath" and related to spirare, meaning "to breathe."
The term "spiritual" means "matters concerning the spirit" and is derived from Old French spirituel, which is derived from Latin spiritualis.
"Spirituality" is the practice and process of personal transformation, either in accordance with religious ideals, or, increasingly, in accordance with personal experience. In a more general sense, it may refer to almost any meaningful activity or blissful experience. There is no single, widely agreed definition for "spirituality," so it refers to a wide variety of practices. Spirituality is NOT:
Spiritual needs can include the need for meaning, for self-worth, to express oneself authentically, to receive faith support, rites, prayer, or sacrament, or to simply have a sensitive listener. Based on over 30 years of counseling and care, Howard Clinebell believes that humans have seven spiritual needs in common:
Clinebell feels that we all must pay attention to these needs to feel whole and fulfilled, making spirituality central to human well-being (Clinebell, 1992).
Why is it important to help people who are living with life-threatening illnesses meet their spiritual needs? It's important because, more than any other factor, people whose spiritual needs are met tend to live and die in peace, and people whose spiritual needs are not met tend to experience spiritual pain, restlessness, craving, and fears of punishment or of not existing after they die. This course is designed to help you meet your own spiritual needs and use that experience to respond effectively to the spiritual needs of people who are living or dying with life-threatening illness.
I invite you to take a moment right now to look at the Human Needs List. Which needs do you consider spiritual? Which aren’t? What makes a need spiritual?