Embracing Spirituality as a Toolkit For Longevity

Along with countless personal anecdotes linking faith to longevity, there is a substantial amount of scientific research to support the claim that spiritual people live longer lives. Onerecent study found that womenwho went to any kind of religious service regularly had a 33% lower chance of dying than their secular peers within a 16-year follow-up period. Spirituality is also associated with maintaining a higher quality of life, helping guide people to self-improvement on the journey towards physical immortality.

Faith-Based Connections

Connections to faith and spiritualism of any denomination help people fulfill their life’s larger purpose, an essentialprinciple of personal longevity. Of course, individual preferences for maintaining a spiritual connection vary widely. However, many contemporary practitioners of longevity prefer to blend a range of spiritual practices, such as combining prayer, meditation, and even out-of-body experiences as methods ofdisconnecting from the physical world. In fact, a core component of all of these spiritual practices is that they ask that worshippers reflect on their personal relationship with God and themselves.

A Historically Spiritual Precedence 

The evidence correlating spiritual practice with increased longevity is not just scientific, but historical. Biblical figures likeMethuselah, a guiding patriarchal figurein the Book of Genesis, are remembered for leading a long life as a direct descendant of Adam and Eve. According to biblical tradition, Methuselah came from a line of family who lived long, spiritual lives, inspiring others to practice spirituality. In a comparable vein,the Hindu deity Vishnuis known as the Preserver of Life through adhering to spiritual and longevity principles: Vishnu is seen as symbol embodying wellness and balance in the Hindu tradition. Traditionally, many ethnic communities associated with longevity such as the people of the Caucasus mountains in Russia, emphasize a life that revolves around daily rituals of reflection and prayer. The precedence of faith in these societies suggests the communal benefits of maintaining spirituality at a societal level.

Strength in Everyday Rituals

A common thread between stories of people who evoke longevity is that they include not just celebrities or religious leaders but normal, everyday people who maintain a spiritual connection. A second study examining the link between longevity and religion found that regular serviceattendance was linked to reductions in stressand even in mortality. In fact, the researchers concluded that worshippers were 55% less likely to die during the up to 18-year follow-up period than people who didn’t frequent the temple, church or mosque. The common link between these groups is not that they are unique or extraordinarily: rather, the results of the study suggest that ordinary people who embrace spirituality can reap the benefits of living a long life. 

It’s natural for people’s relationship to faith and spirituality to evolve over their lives. However, a regular interest in religious services and personal connections to spiritual practices is a form of preventative wellness, inciting people to live longer and more purposeful lives through their faith.