09 October 2009

Clarification ([last] post recovery)

I'm putting my recovered post first, this time. My comments and amendments will be below it.

So, in no uncertain terms, this is what I believe:

God the Father, Yeshua the Son, the Holy Spirit(possibly as the feminine side of God?)

Yeshua is God's Son, His Flesh on Earth, sent to teach us, guide us, Save us (from what, I don't know. Bad harvest?)

The Bible is most definitely NOT infallible. It was written by MEN in a different time, a different place. It serves as a good guide book, as good as, but no better or worse, than the Bhagavad Gita, the Koran, etc. It has been CHANGED since originally written 1500-2000 years ago.

Hell does not exist, at least not in the form mostly thought of. No fire, no brimstone, no devil. I don't know what it might be. I don't know what Heaven might be either.

"God," what we call god is both male and female, singular and plural. Which is how we get the Trinity, three in one, one in three. [Completely random side note, A Memory of Light is like its own holy trinity, three books in one, one book in three. Haha!] God also has many names, including Allah, YHWH, Eloah, Jupiter, Zues, Brigit, Thor, etc.


So, basically, I'm a pagan worshipping the Christian pantheon. Which technically makes me a Christian. Take that! Really, I don't see it as any big difference; no bigger than the difference between Protestant and Catholic Christianities, anyway. Is this another great schism coming along? Probably not. I doubt Christopaganism will ever become mainstream: too many people on both sides claiming it to be impossible. Perhaps another way of seeing it is that my religion is Christianity while my spirituality is paganism. It's not the "what" I'm questioning, it's the "how." I'm not changing "what" I believe, just the "how" I believe it. You can't stick a Protestant into a Catholic church and expect them to be comfortable with how things go down, even though God, Yeshua, and the Holy Spirit are all there. Why should I be any different?

I'd be interested to know what you, my readers (are you there?!), think. Am I just blowing smoke? Should I pick one or the other and stick with it? Or are my points valid (as I think they are!)? Am I any less a Christian than the person who never goes to church? For me, the "what" isn't enough. Or maybe I'm just crazy

How do I say this... I don't know EXACTLY what it is I believe in, religious-wise or any other sort of -wise. I probably never will. I'll always have a general idea, but I feel beliefs are very fluid things with the potential to change. Take my mother: When she learned I was Wiccan oh so many years ago, she was crushed because she had no idea what it meant, but she BELIEVED it was horribly, horribly wrong! With time, she realised I was still a good person, I still worshipped god (in my own way), and it became okay with her. People BELIEVED the Earth was flat. Amusing, no? My point is this: beliefs change, they evolve as more information becomes available or as public morals change (i.e. Women's suffrage).

"It's not the "what" I'm questioning, it's the "how." I'm not changing "what" I believe, just the "how" I believe it."

I tend to use Pagan in a very general form. (I also use Witch and Pagan interchangeably, though I know that for many they aren't. I've always described myself as a Witch or a Pagan, so, for me, they are one in the same. For me. Not necessarily for you.) Earth-worshipper, I suppose. I know I can't speak for all Pagans, but I see it as a way of life that sees god in everything there is and everything we do. In Christianity, it's taught that God is not of this world; though we live in this world, we should not be of it. I don't think that's a good teaching. Of course God is of this world, he made it. Whenever you make something, part of yourself goes into it! And God made everything, therefore God is part of everything. This is probably a big part of why I call myself a Christopagan. I see God as a Force, as an Entity, not necessarily as a sentient Being watching over us. God doesn't "answer" our prayers, we send our wanting energies out into the universe, and that supreme force (aka God!) oftentimes sends those energies back in a way that encapsulates our desires.

All religions have their contradictions. Why should mine be any different? I'm still fond of my description that spirituality-wise I'm a Pagan, but religion-wise I'm a Christian. I know many people would say I must be one or the other. That if I want to convert, I should just do it. But it seems to me that it's entirely possible to worship two seemingly opposing religions side by side or adopt attributes from one religion into another. That, my friends, is how religions are formed! Just look at everything Christianity stole from Judaism. Religions evolve, they grow, they prosper, they die out, they change. That's how we have so many denominations of Christianity, why there are so many Neo-pagan paths. How many Pagans out there are following a century old tradition? How many are basically making it up as they go along (those who use gods/goddesses from different pantheons/cultures, who celebrate the turning of the Wheel differently than others, usw)?

It shouldn't matter to Pagans, I would think, what religion someone else is, because they should know its the same god. Isn't that correct? That all the names we attribute to those we call gods are really just naming the one supreme force of everything? What should it matter to Christians, who need to get the plank out of their eye before they even bother with my measly little splinter. What makes you think I hold my beliefs any less close to my heart than you hold yours? Are Christians who are discovering writings on Sophia/Wisdom and deciding to worship Her alongside God/YHWH any less Christian? Are Pagans who decide to only worship a "singe" god any less Pagan?

I believe God/dess(supreme ultimate being, if you will) leads us all down the paths we take. Or, barring that, leaves little signposts and hints and clues pointing to the paths we should be on. And, well, I'm where God/dess wants me for now. Or I'm just making things up.

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