NEW YORK(CBSNewYork) — Most people go to the spa to soothe their bodies but now, many spas want to help you soothe your soul.
When Dr. Josefina Miranda is done with her day of healing she heads to the spa for some healing of her own.
“I usually feel more focused,” she told CBS 2’s Dick Brennan.
Miranda doesn’t just go to the spa to pamper her body, she also goes to enrich her mind and renew her spirit.
“I have more clarity,” she said.
It’s a growing trend that has many people seeking spirituality at the spa instead of houses of worship, and it has prompted spas to offer new services to meet those needs, according to the International Spa Association.
The treatments are known as “mindful services” and include special massages which are said to align the body’s energies along with hot oil treatments that help the body and mind integrate.
“They’re really taking away with them a new perspective,” Dr. Sheila Patel, Medical Director, The Chopra Center, explained,” They have an opportunity to self reflect.”
Harvard Theology professor Mayra Rivera said that the trend may be a result of a growing number of people who consider themselves spiritual but not religious.
“For people who are no longer part of religious communities it is not surprising that there is a need for places where they can find those spaces, those times for a different type of attentiveness,” Rivera said.
However Rabbi Dennis Math said that spirituality is about more than just connecting with yourself and feeling good.
“It’s religious to take care of one’s self and spas can contribute but we have to find that balance of taking care of ourselves and taking care of others as well,” he said.
With spirituality comes a responsibility to other people, Math said.
“Synagogues and churches don’t exist just for themselves. Synagogues and churches have soup kitchens, addiction centers, they do very good work. Spas don’t do those things,” he said, “Spas can make you feel good and you have to feel good to help others but I think spirituality comes from contributing.”
A recent Pew Research survey found that 46-million Americans are unaffiliated with an organized religion.
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