Spirituality though part of religion was totally distinct from it. In Hinduism initially came Vedas (Hinduism revelations), the first words of God Almighty invoked by highly evolved Sages and Rishis of earlier era. All the four Vedas indulged in both religious and spiritual doctrines.
Subsequent to Vedas over 200 Upanishads (independent spiritual treatises) evolved. These treatises were composed and compiled by individual Sages and Rishis. And finally arrived sermon of Bhagavad Gita by Lord Krishna in the battle of Mahabharata!
Bhagavad Gita and Upanishads are purely spiritual in content having nothing to do with religion.
Spirituality speaks of only one God Brahman, the one and only creator of entire cosmos. As per Advaita Vedanta doctrine propagated by Adi Shankaracharya other than God Almighty nothing exists in cosmos. The whole cosmos exists only in thoughts of Brahman, God.
Spirituality believes that every human being possesses a spirit, soul atman existing in heart. The journey of life is manifested by soul atman within. As the spirit, soul atman within could not purify self of its own it needs a medium, a body to work out its karma.
The purpose of spiritual life in life of human beings is emancipation from cycle of birth and death forever. Gaining enlightenment though a matter of choice in one manifestation could not go on for ever. Somewhere in cosmic sojourn the manifest human form has to indulge in spirituality to reach cosmic end of life. It can be this life, the next or few manifestations henceforth.
The ultimate goal of all human beings on mother earth always remains gaining absolute purity as a soul atman, the spirit within
In the journey of spirituality the seeker needs demolition of ego in totality. This becomes possible by reducing our desires and wishes in stages. Only then we could establish total control over five senses and mind.
Furthermore spiritual travelers need practicing absolute celibacy for a minimum period of 12 years in continuation. Doing so one awakened kundalini shakti fully, the coiled Serpentine energy lying dormant in base of spine.
Full awakening of kundalini results in activation of dormant lying portions of brain. Normal human beings used their brain 1 to 2%, the balance lying dormant. Full activation of kundalini energy results in 100% activation of brain. One finally becomes an enlightened one at the end of spiritual journey, emancipates from cycle of birth and death forever.
Contrary to above indulgence in religious practices (rituals) practically gained nothing. We remained where we were, sometimes even lowering our standard of life. It is quite possible that manifestation in next life may be at a lower level than present. This would result from a bloated ego, indulgence in worldly riches galore.
Many religious practitioners in a country like India were found to be totally corrupt physically and mentally. Physically because the social media says so and mentally because they failed to travel spiritual path, a journey that could have landed them in domain of god!
Religious practitioners were always after material riches. Comparatively on path of pure spirituality we have to liberate self even from bondage of earthly ties forever. Instead of decreasing karma day by day, religious practitioners were increasing their baggage of karma, dross impurities within.
Very few people indulging in religious practices were doing it right, maintaining a neutral stand all the time. If they were not gaining anything on karmic index, there were not losing either. What if we were born on a karmic index of +65 and dear to increase in baggage of negative karma, we shall be born in next manifestation at +64.
All religious practices like regularly going to temples, churches and mosques, never gained anything in life. Daily praying to God, begging him for more riches, worshipping God meant nothing. Any type of religious activity was not supported on spiritual platform as spirituality demands negation of karma to zero. Only then a soul atman becomes pure.
As a human being existing in the highest manifest stage of cosmic life cycle, our goal of life should always be spiritual never religious.
I have come across people who indulged in reading Bhagavad Gita multiple times gaining nothing. Even readings of Bhagavad Gita did not prove helpful to such people. In the circumstances how could, going to temples, churches and mosques could be beneficial!
It is only by contemplation (chintan) we can decide what suits us best spiritual or religious journey!