What are they?
Spirituality is a very individual concept. For some, it may mean being part of an organised religion such as Christianity, Judaism, Islam or Buddhism. For others, spirituality may reflect their own individual beliefs about the universe and their place in it, or a search for meaning and purpose to their lives.
Often when people are diagnosed with cancer, the spiritual aspect of their lives becomes more important.
Why use them?
People often find comfort in prayer, meditation or quiet contemplation. Receiving pastoral care from a religious or spiritual adviser or a hospital chaplain can often help people, even if they are not part of an organised religion.
What to expect?
If you are part of a spiritual or religious community, you may benefit from:
- prayer or meditation groups
- a feeling of unity from the congregation
- healing services for the sick
- practical and spiritual support offered by members of your religious community.
If you are not part of a formal community, you can seek further information and support about your area of spiritual interest from support groups, friendship groups, your local library or online.
What is the evidence?
There is growing scientific evidence of a positive link between spiritual practices and health.