American society has moved away from rigorous, structured religious doctrine in an attempt to “make everyone happy.” America emerged as the melting pot, welcoming immigrants from every faith and walk of life. American society is an amalgam of all these faiths and cultures. To respect or identify with the salient points of each religion, we created the hybrid of Spirituality.
American society has also developed a very me-centered mentality. Often this involves taking rather low-level, narcissistic, self-centered feelings and impulses, and relabeling them with high-level, post-conventional, world-centric — even holy — names.
The harder you could feel, emote, and express your ego with real immediate feelings, the more spiritual you are thought to be. This attitude can be seen in the views of our society, such as: live and let live; anything goes, everyone should find their path. It can also be seen in our political landscape as we take prayer out of our schools, burn the American flag, and refuse to say, “In God We Trust.”
Many aspects of eastern religions are incorporated into Spirituality, such as yoga and meditation. Often people who consider themselves spiritual rather than religious follow the rituals of religions such as funerals and weddings and attach sacredness to objects or concepts such as nature. Spirituality attempts to maintain its hold on the sacred while reconciling advances in technology and science. As our society advances scientifically, many of the mysteries of the past are revealed. What was once thought of as evil spirits that attacked infants we now understand to be bacteria that we can vaccinate against.