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Freedom for Your Soul (4 of 7)
Series: The Care and Feeding of A Soul
A couple of months ago, the AARP magazine carried an interesting interview with Katie Couric. You know her as the host of the NBC Today Show. In 1998 Katie lost her 42-year old husband to a six-month battle with colon cancer. Four years later her sister died. The reporter asked her how these two losses affected her. Katie replied, "I'm very interested in exploring a more spiritual side of me, and I'm in the process of doing that, both formally and informally. I really envy those who have a steadfast, unwavering faith, because I think it's probably so comforting and helpful during difficult times." (Cable Neuhaus, "Whatever Katie Wants," AARP (November/December 2005).
Katie speaks for a lot of Americans. We live in the freest, most prosperous nation on the earth. Even the poorest of us are better off than most of the world. We are far better off than our ancestors. We have unbelievable modern conveniences. Unlimited opportunities abound. Yet a spiritual vacuum lurks beneath that façade of prosperity. Many are looking for something more.
For a growing number of folk, that "something more" falls under the heading of "spirituality." Spirituality can be a pretty slippery label. By spirituality, some folk mean any kind of emotional experience. The more bizarre the better. Others think of elaborate rituals and ceremonies involving lots of incense and chanting. For some, spirituality comes through self-denial. It requires a rejection of all the creature comforts that come with normal life. Spirituality is discovered by becoming a vegetarian or moving to a mountain top retreat. Almost always, spirituality means something totally apart from normal, daily life. There lies the problem! We are left wondering if spirituality can be experienced by regular folk.
That's our theme for the first couple of months of the New Year. We are looking ...
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