Tuesday, February 12, 2013



Spirituality is someone’s source of inspiration or orientation in life; this can involve discovering one’s deeper values as well as the meaning by which people live; it can include being connected to a larger reality or being concerned with yielding to a wider understanding of self or joining with other individuals, the human community, nature, or the divine realm.

Spirituality exists whenever we struggle with the issues of how our lives fit into the greater scheme of things. This is especially true when our questions don’t give way to specific answers or give rise to specific practices such as prayer or meditation.

Questions to be considered in dealing with one’s spirituality:
1-What gives you meaning and purpose?
2-What nourishes you; what replenishes you as you give, share, or create?
3-What is your personal understanding (or your patient’s understanding) of simple truths like      trust, suffering, grace, prayer, connections, and success (what does it look like?)
4-What do you choose to do for fun?  What are some new options, some new resources that can offer grace to our clients? 
5-What brings Hope? What takes your hope away? What does it mean to have enough hope for the journey?
6-How do we call forth courage in others?  How do we validate the gifts, the strengths, and the limits (which the world would name as weaknesses?)

We encounter spiritual issues every time we wonder where the universe comes from, why we are here, or what happens when we die. We also become spiritual when we are moved by values such as beauty, love, or creativity that seem to reveal a meaning or power beyond our visible world.

What are spiritual practices that are associated with one’s spirituality?
  Mindfulness: (awareness of what is happening in the present moment) as well as meditation can be helpful resources. 
Prayer: (that is, connecting to one’s higher power) can be done verbally, silently, or contemplatively.  Use of a favorite scripture or quote or word (mantra) can be used as a starting point for prayer. 
Music: can be used to encourage meditation & reflection as well as the use of comfort measure such as a rosary, worry bead, or small stone can be kept in one’s pocket or hand.

An idea or practice is spiritual when it reveals our personal desire to establish a felt-relationship with the deepest meanings or powers governing life. Love or compassion is often described as the mainstay of spiritual development. (Wikipedia definition of Spirituality)
Final thoughts: Sometimes we need to chart a new course; Change is inevitable; Develop a new awareness of all that is going on around us as well as available resources can smooth the transition.

Based on a presentation given by Cathy from our Bereavement Team. 

Help us share, educate, and reach out by subscribing to our blog and suggesting it to friends who will spread our message: Hospice of Southern Illinois is here to teach you what hospice is, what we are about, and what we can do for you and your loved ones. No one has to go through the dying process alone. Hospice of Southern Illinois can help.

Live well, laugh often, and love much,
Christine Juehne
Hospice of Southern Illinois
Community Education

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