Monday, September 24, 2007

label, schmabel

Why I couldn't call myself a Christian under any circumstances
  • Christians have persecuted too many heretics, witches, people of other faiths, and sexual minorities - and they're still doing it
  • The Christian tradition is far too focussed on celibacy and asceticism
  • I don't want to "die to the world" - I love the Earth and nature
  • I don't believe nature is fallen; nor do I believe in original sin
  • Christians must submit to the authority of their creeds and churches; to me, authority comes only from the Divine, heard as the still small voice within, though possibly mediated through the interpretations of others which may give insight
  • They are too keen to convert others to the faith, and too many of them think it is the only truth
  • The Alpha course (it annoys me so much!)
  • I don't believe in the second coming as a literal event (and don't even get me started on those nutters who go on about the Rapture)
  • I don't have a problem with the Trinity, exactly, but nor do I have a problem with the Unity, Duality, Quaternity, or any other numeric representation of the Divine.
  • I can't believe Christ is the only way to the Divine source - and if you look at Yeshua's words in context (John ch 14), he doesn't seem to have been saying that
Why I am having trouble with being labelled Pagan
  • I'm fed up with the reburial issue - why are people worrying about the ancient dead when the Earth is taking a hammering from consumerism and industrialisation? and I'm interested in the individual stories of our ancestors discovered through archaeology, not the relationship of their bones with the landscape
  • I'm fed up with the constant bickering about what colour your candles should be, and lack of interest in theology and community values
  • Neither duotheism nor hard polytheism really work for me as models of the Divine - if you divide the Divine into genders, it implies that there is a "normal" way to be male or female; and the problem with hard polytheism is that it insists that you must view the Divine in a particular way - to me, it's a unity and a multiplicity
  • It is difficult to account for the problem of evil within Pagan theology
  • I'm fed up with the selfish attitude of people who think it's OK to turn up to a festival and drum, sing and play the didgeridoo all night without regard for the needs of others
  • I'm not sure any more if ancient deities can respond to contemporary needs - or rather, I am not so sure if religion should be about the interaction of people and gods, but rather between people and the universe and all its inhabitants
Why I am still a Wiccan
  • I love Wicca - it is my spiritual home: its rituals, festivals and people stir the depths of my soul
  • It is liberating and empowering for both men and women
  • I am an initiate of Wicca, and proud of it
  • Wicca has got me this far on my spiritual path, why should I abandon it now?
  • I feel responsibility to my trainees
  • It is an amalgam of Christian and Pagan themes
  • It acknowledges the validity of all paths to the Divine
  • You don't have to leave your sense of humour or your brain at the door
Why I am exploring and enjoying Unitarianism
  • It acknowledges the validity of all paths to the Divine
  • It feels like another spiritual home
  • It's the ultimate heresy, and I've always loved the heretics and mystics (must be some kind of British-sympathy-for-the-underdog thing)
  • In one of their leaflets they quote from Life of Brian - "you must all think for yourselves"
  • Some of the people I most deeply admire were Unitarians - Ralph Waldo Emerson, Erasmus Darwin, S T Coleridge
  • Even non-theists can join
  • They have cool hymns (and a saying that they sing badly because they're always looking to the next line to see if they agree with it - hey, I do that!)
  • They espouse the values of Yeshua but not necessarily subsequent accretions of doctrine (particularly the Trinity)
  • They regard Yeshua as a great soul, like other great souls such as Buddha
  • I want to explore my relationship with Kwan Yin as well as Yeshua
  • They have a "build-your-own-theology" kit (what a refreshing change from things like the Alpha course)
  • People are welcome, but they don't proselytise
  • They are not anti-LGBT (indeed, they co-founded the Lesbian and Gay Switchboard)
  • They love nature
  • They build links with other faiths and seek to make peace
  • They draw on science, the arts and other spiritual traditions for inspiration
  • I find the Tao Te Ching to be the most meaningful holy book - this wouldn't be a problem for Unitarians
  • They don't tell you what to think, they just put forward ideas for reflection
  • You don't have to leave your sense of humour or your brain at the door
  • They like discussing theology (but they don't have dogma)

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