In religious studies, including Latina/o religious studies, “spirituality” traditionally refers to the faith and understanding fostered by the practices, ceremonies, rituals, and training of individuals and groups participating in religious denominations  or  groups (de  Luna  2002;  MacDonald  2005; Nabhan-Warren 2013; Tirres 2014). Latinas/os of all denominations embrace spirituality in this traditional sense, including Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Jews, and others (Aponte 2012). Even though some Latina/o religions have not always enjoyed acceptance as a religion— such as Santería, Lucumí, Yoruba, Orisha, Regla de Ocha, or Candomblé—their adherents similarly describe the process of growing in belief, knowledge, and understanding through religious activities as the spiritual (M. Vega 2000). Alternately, in contemporary usage, “spirituality” may also refer to a realm larger than the self—such as the cosmos, the whole of creation, or a nonmaterial sphere (MacDonald 2005).

In Latina/o studies, “spirituality” best describes the cultivation and expression of one’s relationship to the sacred …

This essay may be found on page 212 of the printed volume.

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