Spirituality and Dating

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    Apr 28, 2008 8:49 AM GMT
    I have a quetion I'm curious about. Does spirituallity or religion ever a factor in who you date or how you date? For me, it hardly ever comes up, but I am a very spiritual-minded Wiccan/Buddhist, and that effects how I date other men to an extent. I'm just wondering if that is a turn-off for some gay men or if your faith is part of your love life?

  • Apr 28, 2008 2:35 PM GMT
    To be honest, I've not been actively dating for a while, but I suspect it would affect my dating habits to at least some extent (this is someone I would potentially be spending the rest of my life with after all).

    Spirituality and religion to me is a highly personal experience. I try not to impose my beliefs on others and I would ask that they give me the same respect... this applies to friends and potential datees.

    So for me, someone else being spiritual or religious is a non-issue unless I feel like I'm being preached/converted to or if I sense there's any sort of intolerance/persecution of others on their part.
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    Apr 28, 2008 2:37 PM GMT
    One of my rules for dating a guy is that they HAVE to have some sort of spirituality in their life that is positive and life affirming (In other words, no Satan worshippers).

    Religion, that's tricky. Most religions breed fragmantation... but if a person is spiritual in their religious beliefs, and not fanatical, things seem okay. I've learned a lot from peeps of different slants, and i like that.
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    Apr 28, 2008 2:45 PM GMT
    Wiccan/Buddhist hmmmmmmmmm bit of a contrast?


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    Apr 28, 2008 3:14 PM GMT
    wiccan/buddhist isn't a contradiction- buddhism is more of a life-philosophy than a religion anyways, anyone can claim it in combination with other religions really, or so i've been told.

    i'm personally a Thelemite, which is pretty obscure and deals with the occult and with metaphysics pretty intimately. most fear the unknown, and Thelema, with Alister Crowly as its founder, isn't without its popular misconceptions lol. i'm always upfront with anyone i start dating about it though, and tell them quite frankly that i practice ritual magick lol. ok, maybe i don't use those words off-the-bat, but 'interest in the occult' suffices. no one's had a problem with it yet. if they did, well, im not interested in small or closed-minded people lol. as long as someone is devoted to the pursuit of light and love in deity, i see no problems. its all the same divinity, no matter the form of worship.
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    Apr 28, 2008 7:23 PM GMT
    I think if you are a deeply spiritual person committed to a path of self-development it would be difficult for that not to have some influence in who you date. I find that well a specific religion is not a requirement, some type of spirituality is needed. Not for the reason that I want to impose my beliefs on anyone, frankly I don't care if anyone subscribes to things as I do or not, but more in the sense of having some common ground. An atheist is not going to understand me, nor will I understand them.

    I am about the most open minded person you will ever meet, I can accept most anything in someone else provided there is some spiritual nature there and that its tolerant and accepting of different views. Radical religious fundamentalists are out of bounds though. I simply am way to aware of the destruction and devastation caused by those who think their way is the only right way.

    Again, tolerance, open-mindedness, willingness to consider new ideas, non-pushiness, and respect are the qualities that I look for in regards to spirituality and in regards to most everything else in their life. If the fact that I have alternative views on spirituality and religion is a turn off, then we wouldn't work in the first place.
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    Apr 28, 2008 7:38 PM GMT
    Wicca and Buddhism as a contrast? Huh? In many ways, they share a great deal in common. Let's see here are a few:

    1.) Respect for the sacredness of life

    2.) Embracing the sacred as a normal part of daily life

    3.) A belief that spirituality can better the lives of those who it touches

    4.) Non-harmfulness - The Wiccan Rede - Do what you will, harm none. Buddhist First Precept (Ahimasa)
    "Aware of the suffering caused by the destruction of life, I undertake to cultivate compassion and learn ways to protect the lives of people, animals, plants, and minerals. I am determined not to kill, not to let others kill, and not to condone any act of killing in the world, in my thinking, and in my way of life."

    5.) A belief and cultivation of a universal energy source.

    6.) Transmigration - Reincarnation

    7.) The use of prayer, ritual, blessings, chanting, etc.

    8.) The development of Siddhis - attainments of powers/accomplishments in Buddhism, The development of psychic abilities in wicca. Vayu Gaman Siddhi: Through this Siddhi a person can become capable of flying in the skies and traveling from one place to another in just a few seconds. - Buddhist Origin, compared to Astral/Out of Body travel in wicca.

    Anyway I could go on and on, but I will stop here for now. I think its sufficient to say that Buddhism is terribly represented in the vast majority of modern western literature, right down to and including university level comparative religion courses. Wicca suffers from a similar fate, having been Llewelynized for the mass market. Both have a powerful, beautiful mystical tradition to them that is far beneath the modern superficial understanding. One could also examine the differences, but overall I would say they probably share far more then those things that would separate them.
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    May 12, 2008 5:33 AM GMT
    Spirituality and religion don't come up very much in dating for me. I'm a little bit of an oddity as part of the Science of Mind/New Thought movement. Part of that means accepting whatever way my partner chooses or chooses not to worship or express his beliefs or lack thereof. The only time that it has been a problem is when the other guy's interpretation of his own belief system doesn't allow him to be comfortable with mine. I had a very devout Catholic guy I was interested in who very politely told me that my belief system creeped him out. I had another guy that was more anti-theist than atheist and would get red in the face and yell if saw me reading anything looked even remotely spiritual. When he waved my copy of "The Little Zen Companion" in my face and told me that I needed lay off the bullshit, I decided it probably wasn't going work out.icon_lol.gif I figure that these "deal breakers" are there for a reason and try not to dwell on something that wouldn't have been worth the effort.
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    May 12, 2008 5:36 AM GMT
    I have never really discussed Religion or my Spirituality to my Boyfriend he is Muslim and I was baptised Anglican.
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    May 12, 2008 12:04 PM GMT
    Nope, as long as he doesn't drag me to church. I wouldn't be able to stomach a fundie though. icon_lol.gif
  • DanBasil

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    May 13, 2008 5:19 AM GMT
    Well, I'm a very spiritual person. I had an altar for quite some time in my apartment that I shared with my bf, though it meant a lot to me, he didn't see it that way, but respects my having it. I think the only time it would become an issue was if a bf didn't accept me for my beliefs or demanded I change.
    Otherwise that which will be will be.
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    May 18, 2008 5:06 PM GMT
    Spirituality and dating would seem to be related in my experience.

    I'm somewhat of a spiritual seeker and it motivates the things I devote my time and energy to as well as the balance I try to strike.

    It's where my head and heart are at (most of the time). Spending time with someone who is basically somewhere else is not going to work for me ultimately.

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    Jun 13, 2008 9:29 PM GMT
    I am a spiritual person, at least I would like to think I am. My bf is not into any spirituality or religious affiliation. Over the three years that we have been together, he has seen my interest in spirituality and encouraged it. He himself never experienced any interest in what I was learning and experiencing. There are times that I wish he was spiritual, but then again I try to accept him for who he is and see it as my own spiritual lesson to learn.
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    Jul 11, 2008 3:38 PM GMT
    For me being in a committed relationship with another Christian was and is paramount. To be able to pray together, worship together, love Jesus together, is just as intimate, if not more so, than sex (physical intimacy).

    Being a Christian allows us to be mutually accountable to God in a way that calls us both to step outside ourselves, for we have a model in Jesus of "agape" love that is unconditional, sacrificial and boundless as modeled in Jesus Christ. Our personal pursuit of being more like Jesus only adds to the beauty and depth of the relationship. It's this third-party involvement of God that makes our relationship like a "trio" than just the two of us. I know he prays for me, and he knows I pray for him when we are apart. Knowledge of this, in itself, is encouraging and empowering to me. The point is, that it's not just about me.

    On a selfish note, the best part -- I know he has to forgive me for whatever I do icon_smile.gif (and I him), as that is the call of the Christian -- to forgive and to love without bounds. This accountability before God allows the relationship to grow within the bounds of a "sacredness" that adds depth and meaning to our love.

    Having had this experience of shared values and love for God, I wouldn't have it any other way in a committed relationship. Ever. 13 years and counting. icon_biggrin.gif
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    Jul 11, 2008 3:54 PM GMT
    deviledhotdog saidI have a quetion I'm curious about. Does spirituallity or religion ever a factor in who you date or how you date? For me, it hardly ever comes up, but I am a very spiritual-minded Wiccan/Buddhist, and that effects how I date other men to an extent. I'm just wondering if that is a turn-off for some gay men or if your faith is part of your love life?


    It's not a factor in my dating process. It's just something that's already there like hair or eye color and since I have no power to change those things at will I just let it go. I've actually tried to go out of my way to date guys with spiritual/religious perspectives different from my own, and oddly found that they aren't that different from me, aside from some statues, polytheism, orthadox or just another born again in confusion.

    In my opinion, if a guy wants go to experience a different temple or church with me on some random given weekend, or not, it's fine. I'd like for him to go, sure, but I won't think less of him for being atheistic or orthadox or whatever. As long as he loves me and supports our relationship in every other way it's all the same.
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    Oct 08, 2008 8:13 PM GMT
    deviledhotdog saidDoes spirituallity or religion ever a factor in who you date or how you date? For me, it hardly ever comes up, but I am a very spiritual-minded Wiccan/Buddhist, and that effects how I date other men to an extent. I'm just wondering if that is a turn-off for some gay men or if your faith is part of your love life?


    In my case, I'm a recently-converted Hellenic Reconstructionist (aka Greek Pagan), for whom religion is part of life. The fact is, I can't separate my spiritual life from my relationships, because both are important to me, and I usually try to meet a guy with whom I share some spiritual interests in common.

    If it's a turn-off for some guys to meet another guy for whom faith is important, I would almost guarantee, his beef is with Christianity, or another monotheistic religion...
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    Oct 08, 2008 9:26 PM GMT
    I've been seeing a great guy for about a year now. Spirituality is a huge part of what connects us. We were both raised Catholics (though he is half Jewish). I am loosely connected to the Catholic church, though my heart is probably more with Universalist Unitarians, Buddhists or Hindus. My partner is drawn to Wiccan and Pagan ritual. Previously I dated a protestant minister. A great deal of the closeness I felt toward these men derives from having a partner in the struggle to connect belief and faith to action. So, yes, religion or spirituality can be sexy.icon_twisted.gificon_razz.gif
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    Oct 09, 2008 7:32 PM GMT
    Being that I don't personally believe in religion for myself, I can accept someone being Spiritual over being Religious; I can respect someone for wanting to be Religious as long as they do not attempt to force their beliefs upon me. I do have elements of my childhood religion still in me however I did NOT grow very religious AT ALL!!! And I do have a crazy "Born Again" Christian Aunt that's a WHACK job, but the religion ONLY added to her KooKoo'ness!!! And religion has YET to rear it's head in to my dating life at all.....
  • reliable1

    Posts: 65

    Oct 10, 2008 1:40 AM GMT
    RBY71 said The only time that it has been a problem is when the other guy's interpretation of his own belief system doesn't allow him to be comfortable with mine.


    Well put. Being around an eclectic mix of people, I know it is not only one faith's members that can put other groups down and be intolerant. I've also been around a few "pagans" that will complain about mistreatment for others and then turn around and disrespect monotheists for their beliefs. (Granted it doesn't happen nearly as often or unconsciously as the reverse.)

    Fortunately, most of my friends are apt to appreciate another person's journey and just encourage the growth even when believing differently.

    Will say that it can be an enhancement to the relationship when two people can relate to each other's spiritual beliefs, but it doesn't have to tear things apart if not.

    I do find if a guy starts referring to being sexual as "being bad," it does creep me out a bit. With my spiritual beliefs, having sex and "being good" is very compatible simultaneously. If somebody wants to find someone to "be bad" with by having sex together, that probably isn't going to work out with me too well.
  • Delivis

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    Oct 10, 2008 1:56 AM GMT
    It does not necessarily bother me if someone is religious or superstitious. It does however bother me if they put that subject out of conversation reach and make it taboo.

    Overall I think it would be very unlikely for me to date someone with strong religious beliefs.
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    Oct 10, 2008 2:07 AM GMT
    I've actually discovered for myself that if a guy doesn't have some sort of spiritual thoughts/questions/search, I don't relate to him well. If someone is just about the new car he bought or how much he bench pressed to the exclusion of thinking of something outside himself, we don't have much in common. My ex was Lutheran, and I'm Unitarian Universalist, but the common bond of both looking to live better lives through developing ourselves was what kept us together, as well as our strong ethics.

    Granted you can have these things without being a part of an organized religion, but many times the lack of structure there doesn't support a guy in keeping the search going.
  • Delivis

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    Oct 10, 2008 2:29 AM GMT
    matt45710 saidI've actually discovered for myself that if a guy doesn't have some sort of spiritual thoughts/questions/search, I don't relate to him well. If someone is just about the new car he bought or how much he bench pressed to the exclusion of thinking of something outside himself, we don't have much in common. My ex was Lutheran, and I'm Unitarian Universalist, but the common bond of both looking to live better lives through developing ourselves was what kept us together, as well as our strong ethics.

    Granted you can have these things without being a part of an organized religion, but many times the lack of structure there doesn't support a guy in keeping the search going.



    You can have all of those things and not be spiritual or mystical or superstitious at all.
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    Oct 10, 2008 2:34 AM GMT
    Delivis said

    You can have all of those things and not be spiritual or mystical or superstitious at all.


    Not sure of what you mean by "all those things" but it's a different way of thinking about things, and that's what I'm more in tune with. Not saying everyone should be this way, but this is what I'm more aligned with and what I'm looking for in dating.
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    Oct 10, 2008 6:08 PM GMT
    For me, spirituality should be embedded into a person's personality. Sprituality doesn't have to have a name, a religion, a cult, a best selling book, cliches, statues, or any other neat tidy explanation.

    I've met too many people who just strive to consider themselves religious or spiritual. Yet, these handy little dogmas don't translate into their everyday lives......while they are driving.......thinking about who to vote for......the way they treat their next door neighbor, the way they treat people less/more fortunate than themselves, or anything else.

    Nobody is perfect. We are all human and capable of feeling many different emotions. I think the trick is to recognize that spirituality is a learning process. To me, the homeless man in the street can have more spirituality than the Dalai Lama.

    The worst thing is when a person is very good at reading/writing about spirituality so he/she can appear spiritual, but they don't know the meaning of the phrase

    Love one another.
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    Oct 10, 2008 6:19 PM GMT
    deviledhotdog saidI have a quetion I'm curious about. Does spirituallity or religion ever a factor in who you date or how you date? For me, it hardly ever comes up, but I am a very spiritual-minded Wiccan/Buddhist, and that effects how I date other men to an extent. I'm just wondering if that is a turn-off for some gay men or if your faith is part of your love life?


    If their spirituality in some way leaves them rather conflicted, then I tend to shy away.