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spiritual Syllabification: spir·it·u·al
Pronunciation: /ˈspiriCH(o͞o)əl/

Definition of spiritual in English:


1Of, relating to, or affecting the human spirit or soul as opposed to material or physical things: I’m responsible for his spiritual welfare the spiritual values of life
More example sentences
  • Ackroyd may have jettisoned traditional Catholicism, but in his work humans are spiritual beings with souls that survive death and time.
  • Our spiritual existence affects our physical existence, and vice versa.
  • Encouraging mutuality acknowledges that our spiritual existence affects our physical existence.
nonmaterial, incorporeal, intangible;
inner, mental, psychological;
transcendent, ethereal, otherworldly, mystic, mystical, metaphysical
1.1(Of a person) not concerned with material values or pursuits.
Example sentences
  • It is full of thought, and she was an intellectual and spiritual person.
  • We are trying to be spiritual people in this field.
  • ‘We're spiritual people, but we've got our feet on the ground,’ Christophere explains.
2Of or relating to religion or religious belief: the tribe’s spiritual leader
More example sentences
  • What happens to the religious or spiritual beliefs of soldiers when they go to battle?
  • While we respect religious creeds, spiritual leaders and church councils, none of these can bind our consciences or force us to believe or observe anything outside of Bible truth.
  • Lately, however, methods have been developed to assess religiosity and spiritual beliefs.


(also Negro spiritual) Back to top  
A religious song of a kind associated with black Christians of the southern US, and thought to derive from the combination of European hymns and African musical elements by black slaves.
Example sentences
  • The Cwmbach Male Voice Choir entertained with a traditional repertoire of Welsh hymns, spirituals and songs from opera and the shows.
  • One of the first, Songs of Zion was published by the United Methodist Church and contains a history of black music in addition to hymns, spirituals and gospel songs.
  • In this collection are old British and American ballads, Civil War songs, blues, frolic tunes, children's games, nonsense songs, lullabies, spirituals, and more.


one's spiritual home
A place in which one feels a profound sense of belonging: I had always thought of Italy as my spiritual home
More example sentences
  • The Taliban was in total disarray and heading for the hills last night after losing control of Jalalabad and appearing to have been ousted from Kandahar, their spiritual home.
  • As warm-up for Joan Rivers, the odd couple found their spiritual home on stage - as she put it, ‘the best opening act in their price range’.
  • Football once again showed its power to unite last night as hundreds of Bradford City fans descended on their spiritual home as the club's desperate battle for survival stepped up a gear.


Pronunciation: /ˌspiriCHəˈwalədē/
Example sentences
  • In the west, atheism has always been seen as totally at odds with religion and spirituality.
  • Sometimes I need a little reminder about the mysticism and spirituality of my faith.
  • Part of its appeal is that unlike religion, spirituality does not come with a moral code.
Pronunciation: /ˈspiriCH(əw)əlē/
Example sentences
  • If one learns to communicate with oneself, one progresses spiritually, and one is never lonely.
  • Then, my partner at the time left me, and this was a devastating blow to me, emotionally and spiritually.
  • I had been allowing other's attitudes to influence how I saw myself spiritually.


Middle English: from Old French spirituel, from Latin spiritualis, from spiritus (see spirit).

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