General Question

Scarlett's avatar

Could you see yourself living your life completely dedicated to Religion or Spirituality ?

Asked by Scarlett (915points) July 20th, 2010

I was wondering if anyone out there has ever had the thought of dedicating one’s self to the quest for inner self and spirituality.

I’m not talking about just doing therapy sessions here, or going to church once in a while, but dedicating your LIFE to it.

Either as monks, yogis, I’m not sure even what you call them.

I have this idea that’s been brewing in my mind since I was about 13…

If I could handle, moving out of the United States, give up worldly materialistic things, and live as a spiritual person.

Monks, Nuns, Yogis, whatever you want to call it.

I get tired sometimes of everday life, and I crave something deeper, I don’t know if an hour a day will satisy that craving for peace, knowledge, God, etc.

Meditating most of the time, trying to find my higher self.

Just curious if anyone else has wondered….

Thoughts ?

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26 Answers

gailcalled's avatar

I haven’t, but my Mac genius/teacher told me he was getting really tired of the computer business. He said (and I hope he waits a while) that he was almost ready to take his dog, Toast, and join a Buddhist Monastery.

josie's avatar

I couldn’t do it. But as long as you had food, shelter and clothing, I suppose some folks might find it to be peaceful and simple. But who would buy your food, shelter and clothing?

janbb's avatar

I could probably cope with any lifestyle I had to, but would I choose to do it? No.

gailcalled's avatar

@Scarlett: Where do you live? There are many monasteries around the country who let people stay with them for extended periods of time to try out the life. There is no obligation. I spent a couple of days in SF where I rented the little apartment in the SF Zen Center. I got to observe the life and share a silent breakfast daily. It was beautiful and peaceful.

whatnot's avatar

Yes, I thought about it a few times – to live in a religious/spiritual community. I went as far as studying to become a minister. When I was in Bible college, I devoted myself wholeheartedly to spiritual practice and development.

I like the idea of full devotion, however, I believe I can accomplish this while living my life in the world. To me, being spiritual is to be alive and present to my surroundings, to be in relationship with God, and to serve others. For me, this is complete devotion.

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

That kind of discipline would be too restrictive for me in my life.

gemiwing's avatar

I’ve just started my path to such a life. Spirituality stays with me, wherever I am. I don’t need to live in a monastery or convent to make my spiritual life priority one. It’s fine for those that like the structure, I just like being mobile.

Facade's avatar

I don’t think it’s necessary to be a nun, monk, etc. to please God, so no, I can’t see myself doing that.

YARNLADY's avatar

Yes, I wanted to become a nun and be completely removed from the problems and trials of life, and let the church support me.

MaryW's avatar

No, I do serve others and myself by walking in this complete world. I could not be only religious nor could I be only secular. A priest told me that if a person has a calling to be “a religious” they know it. I am very with God and very in This world.

I some how feel that you are just bored. If you have thought about purpose for so long and have done nothing about it yet you need to kick start your mind with pro-active giving or thinking or growing. The best religious have had to live life to become connected to solitude for inner growth. So you would not be wandering off track. Maybe one of your skills is supposed to inspire you and others. Take a chance and be daring.
You seem very poetic and creative ( I peeked at your profile) and maybe you need to find or feel that some part of you is wildly successful. Take a course in mediation from a master. Meditation is very alert and of the moment…I was very suprised by this. It really helped me to see the whole picture and me in it differently.

You seem to already be spiritual, revel in it and share it. You do not have to isolate to deepen spirituallity. You can deepen yourself while walking in this world. If you had a calling to be a religious you would know it already or you will know it when you get very active in the things you do.

ETpro's avatar

As an agnostic, I can’t see myself doing that unless is was just for crass profit like so many of the televangelists do. But if I were to come to believe deeply that some spiritual avenue held the answers to life, the universe and everything, absolutely. What could be of more supreme value than obtaining enlightenment?

anartist's avatar

@Scarlett Would this be a selfish quest or a vocation to serve others and perhaps a deity under the aegis of a monastery, convent, ashram, temple etc. Those are two very different things.

perspicacious's avatar

Yes, had I been drawn to it at an early age.

ETpro's avatar

@anartist I might reconsider if I can serve in a convent. :-)

anartist's avatar

@ETpro get thee to a monastery! Go!

tragiclikebowie's avatar

I have thought about it. I don’t know if I would ever DO it but during difficult times (especially in relationships) I often say to myself “I’m going to run away and become a nun.” This could also be a result of 8 years of Catholic school.

Pandora's avatar

When I was younger I yearned to do just that. I got caught up in teaching Sunday school and loved being able to help others. It was an enormous pull but I realized that my real calling was to have a family of my own. If its meant to be you will know. Any real commitment in your life that you feel pulls towards will be the right decision because you will just know. If you have to ask, you are either not ready or its the wrong decision for you.
Give yourself some time. Don’t make this decision because you want to run away from something or life. It should be made because you want to run toward something that you believe in with your whole heart.
If its meant to be than giving up materialistic things is a cinch.
When I married my husband, I gave up a lot of materialistic things. We were so very broke, but at the time I felt so very rich. Didn’t miss a thing. Food some days, but I felt full in my heart. I knew I had made the right choice.
If it is your calling, than it will fill you up.
Best of luck.

mammal's avatar

i think about it at least once a week and When i’m particularly tired of human behaviour. People have an incredible knack of justifying bad behaviour and this i find even more exhausting, plus the inability to let go….or the good manners to occasionally suffer in silence, the seemingly relentless way that people judge and act only in accordance with their own best interests, the lack of mindfulness, sensitivity and the incessant neediness, are areas of human dynamics that i’d occasionally like a break from.


Spiritually, perhaps, religiously, never. I consider myself to be more spiritual than religious, but even then, I am too fond of material things to disconnect myself from that world and live a solely spiritual life. I enjoy worldy things, the amenities, the fun of modernity, the pleasures of the senses and the flesh…(lol).

TexasDude's avatar

I’m a bit of an unapologetic materialist, and I can be very self-indulgent.

So no.

Jabe73's avatar

I already believe you can elevate your spirituality just by living a life devoted to helping others without any religious/spiritual beliefs/titles. I do not believe in any single religious philosophy myself but I have spiritual beliefs.

anartist's avatar

I thought about it once when I was really down and wanted to find peace by erasing myself as an individual personality, but just could not deal with the submission to a higher power that is usually somewhere in the fine print of the contract.

DarlingRhadamanthus's avatar

Yes, I have many times. But I think I would just be a solo monastic. I wouldn’t join a group or a religion or anything like that.

I would just find a small house in a tiny place somewhere where I could actually see the stars and the passing seasons…and live quietly and contemplatively. Still live in the world, but not necessarily be part of it.

woodcutter's avatar

no. trust in yourself. you are all you got really.

mattbrowne's avatar

No. And by the way, most monks and nuns dedicate part of their lives to helping other people. In the real world.

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