Re: Theory: "Spiritual" vs "Learning something new we can't explain"
I believe there is an indivisible connection, but my point is that the human experience is a spiritual one by nature. Esotericism or gnosticism is more what I think people misinterpret for 'spiritual' in the context of this thread. Many people in our post-modern society don't want to find 'spirituality' from religion, because of the connotations of religion in their mind, as well as their own prejudice against religion. Aikido as an art and not a religion then becomes a far more attractive medium through which to develop and express 'spirituality'.
There's nothing wrong with finding spirituality in Aikido or any other art - music for example I believe is a very spiritual experience. But again that is because I think spirituality is innate to the human experience and identity. However, 'spirituality' isn't just something the few 'discover', we all naturally give value to things that are important to us and this leads that thing to become an expression of our own spiritual connection to life. The Apostle Paul used many illustrations from life to express spiritual truths in his letters. He referred to farming, sport and soldiering in order to give concrete examples of abstract realities. By using such everyday understandable language he was able to communicate the transcendant or sublime far more effectively. Thus Aikido, painting, music, sport, we can draw spiritual lessons and examples from everything.