Originally posted by Penguin
I was recently listing to this podcast:
Essentially, it is an interview with two atheists. Adam Frank is of the opinion that there is such a thing as 'spiritual atheism': essentially, the sense of awe and wonder we get when considering the natural universe in all its glo ...[text shortened]... orting to metaphor.
The podcast is well worth a listen.
In philosophy "spiritualism" is the doctrine that the spirit exists as distinct from matter, or that "spirit is the sole reality" (for example check the Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English/ 2009, originally published by Oxford University Press/ 2009). Therefore the basic philosophical understanding is "the power of the spirit", and of course "the quality or state of being spiritual" (Webster 1913) -and this is exactly the definition I have in mind.
However, most people are aware of its common definition ("a system of belief or religious practice based on supposed communication with the spirits of the dead, esp. through mediums", and in addition "...the doctrine, in opposition to the materialists, that all which exists is spirit, or soul -that what is called the external world is either a succession of notions impressed on the mind by the Deity, as maintained by Berkeley, or else the mere educt of the mind itself, as taught by Fichte (Webster 1913), and in addition (...a belief that departed spirits hold intercourse with mortals by means of physical phenomena, as by rapping, or during abnormal mental states, as in trances, or the like, commonly manifested through a person of special susceptibility, called a medium; spiritism; the doctrines and practices of spiritualists).
There are another definitions yet, ie:
1. a. The belief that the dead communicate with the living, as through a medium.
b. The practices or doctrines of those holding such a belief.
2. A philosophy, doctrine, or religion emphasizing the spiritual aspect of being (Answers com.)
3. Belief that the souls of the dead can make contact with the living, usually through a medium or during abnormal mental states such as trances. The basis of spiritualism is the conviction that spirit is the essence of life and that it lives on after the body dies. A medium is a person sensitive to vibrations from the spirit world, who may hold meetings known as séances in order to seek messages from spirits. A "control" is a spirit that gives messages to the human medium, who in turn gives them to other people. Spirits are also thought to manifest themselves through such means as rapping or levitating objects. Some spiritualists claim powers of paranormal healing. Scientific study of spiritualist phenomena has been the focus of the Society for Psychical Research, founded in Britain in 1882 (Britannica)
And finally there are also theological and theosophical definitions as well