Big Time ideas8 September 2011 at 6:29pmPosts: 1919 (1 today)Status: online
My dad was Irish Catholic. My Mom was raised in the Epicopal Church. When they got married my Dad got my Mom to join the Catholic Church.He want golfing while she took kids to church. She left before I was born.
She looked around at other churches, and basically decided that God is within us, but wanted to take us kids somewhere so she went back to the Episcopal Church. They're pretty laid back.
20-some years ago I got sucked into a very fundament church. While at the library reading a book called "KIngdom of the Cults", I sank to my knees in the isle of the library as I read a description of brainwashing techniques that some of these churches use, and this church had used them all and then some. Creepy feeling. Most of us don't realize how subtle brainwashing can be. I left the next day.
I am Christian, but believe that some of his message has been distorted or left out. He was a big advocate of woman's rights, for example. Jon Anderson told me that he had talked to a Navaho chief recently. Jon had brought up Jesus and the Chief said "We know your Jesus, Jon, your Jesus was here." Yup, there's more in heaven and earth. I am very interested in American Indian beliefs.
Big Time ideas8 September 2011 at 7:46pmPosts: 1919 (1 today)Status: online
I would like to add that I believe in life after death. About 20 or 30 minutes after my Dad died, he walked right through me. I felt a feeling of love and joy. Absolutely no doubt about it. This was 20 years ago and I hadn't heard of that. It's not like I was waiting for it or something. I acctually physically felt this. It acctually knocked me back a bit, and I was standing alone in my Moms kitchen. Things happened after my Mom died, too.
Then after seeing the black figure behind my daughter at our old house, well, yea. She had seen it,too. Her reaction was yea, I told you! I didn't tell the other kids until we moved out because I didn't want them to freak out. Then before I told them, my son and younger daughter described the same thing I had seen.
The point being that there is alot more going on than we see. I'm basically with the belief, too, that God is an energy and Conciousness that is in everything, not just an old guy with a white beard and a paddle.
*Last post- fundamentalist church
Listener8 September 2011 at 9:31pmPosts: 199 (0 today)Status: offline
I've had that feeling of pure love walking through my body too, it stopped me in my tracks and took every single piece of worry away from me in an instant, it took a second or two but I was left feeling like I have never felt before. I worry about sharing it in case people think I'm a nut case or something. When my brother died recently I embarked on research and ended up looking at NDE's and OBE's on you tube and a guy called Robert Munroe. The stories are convincing if you have an open mind by very credible people indeed who have nothing to lose or gain but all feel the need to share the experience. Religion now isn't as defensive as it was when I was younger, Catholicism was fire and brimstone stuff. Now I am not afraid to embrace things like Buddhism yet still keep to my Christian roots. Religion is a man made perception. My view now is far more pragmatic, its like we are here for a short while, we own nothing and that everything given to us is made from the earth, belongs to earth and will return to the earth long after we are gone. And that what we carry round in our hearts is what we will take with us into the infinity. Wow soulful heavy stuff Eh!! However saying that I still struggle with the art of forgiveness, not sure if I'm supposed to forgive outright or people have to ask for forgiveness first, thats the Catholic guilt trip kicking in again. Sorry if I'm too heavy.
Progressive jen8 September 2011 at 9:34pmPosts: 5472 (0 today)Status: offline
"Not with a white beard and a paddle"
Thank you Big.
I do believe there is a "God" and we are all part of it.
I try to respect the beliefs of others but I don't get how some can worship the guy with the beard who relishes punishment.
If I'm going to be spanked in the after life I would prefer the Devil - would probably be much more fun :-] :-] :-] :-]
Big Time ideas9 September 2011 at 1:47amPosts: 1919 (1 today)Status: online
Not too heavy, Listener.
Jen- I think you'd prefer Peter :-] :-] :-]
Progressive jen9 September 2011 at 3:28amPosts: 5472 (0 today)Status: offline
Well. . . . . :-]
Meremaid15 September 2011 at 3:31pmPosts: 328 (0 today)Status: offline
I don't really have a faith as such, but, i do feel that i am a very spiritual person.
I have no prejudices with anybody's religious beliefs.
Love and peace to everybody.
NorthStar7 August 2012 at 7:58amPosts: 8 (0 today)Status: offline
I'm a devout Greek Orthodox. I considered becoming a nun in my teenage years but ended up marrying a _Selfish Gene_-thumping athiest from a Catholic family.
I was born in Cyrpus where cultural and religious divides have created tensions for centuries and are embedded in the genetic makeup of the island. I grew up in Canada and that has fostered an ability to see the truth and beauty in various forms of expressions of faith. I still stick to Greek Orthodoxy, though. I love diving into the liturgy and get the same high as from a yoga class. It's a sense of peace, celebration, awe and love.
I stumbled across this interesting podcast on religion called _After Atheism: New Perspectives on God and Religion_. I love the idea of Ana-theism and of repeating the past but repeating it forward. I found it particulary interesting as I gear up for PG's Back to Front concert in Toronto.
Jared C7 August 2012 at 9:47amPosts: 986 (0 today)Status: offline
Hmmm....first off, Rev Bob - that was an AMAZING post!!!!
I'm of the Judaic tribe - mom and dad were born Jewish. Don't really consider myself particularly religious or spiritual - I don't goto Temple, but I do observe certain Jewish rituals (ie.: lighting candles on Hannukah, etc.).
As for my beliefs in G-d (yes, I came across that habit of putting a dash instead of the "o" early on - forget the significance) - it's really a question mark for me - I'd LIKE to believe there is something higher than me that I will never understand that allows us to "be," and "learn," and "grow" as a human being. I really don't know what started this all - G-d? Big Bang? Something else? I do find it harder and harder to have faith as I get older and I see what viscous creatures we humans can be, but I also believe we are capable of more than we'll ever know. When it comes to my religion - I tell people I am a Jew, but when it comes to my description of religion, I just say, we should all love our fellow humans, and if we do our part to make our world a better place than we will be rewarded somehow in the milleniums to come. I don't know what happens after we pass on, but I like to believe we go into other peoples' hearts, and that we will return again someday as something different (no not like a bird or a tree), but something in the "next order" of things. I believe our soul is our ability to care for others, and I hope that when I pass away, I'll feel something tangible - like a warmth or something pleasant, but I just hope I'm doing enough as a person while I'm still here. I don't knock other religions, and I defend anyones' right to believe whatever they want. I think everyone should have compassion, sense to do good, love in their hearts, an ability to try to be creative sometimes, and understand that nothing will ever be "perfect" but that we can live as if our souls are.
NorthStar7 August 2012 at 6:20pmPosts: 8 (0 today)Status: offline
I wonder sometimes if faith and morality need to be as linked as they are. One doesn't need faith to be a good person or to do good acts. And certainly history has shown that people who identify themselves as religious are capable of unthinkable atrocities.
I think faith is a way of connecting ourselves to something outside ourselves. [Disclaimer for the next bit: I'm sorry if I sound self-centred but I really can't speak for anyone but myself. All I can do is share my experience as a way of trying to explain my understanding of faith. I don't believe it is in any way a model for anyone else.] In my case, celebrating God through a ritualized liturgy reminds me of everything I'm thankful for. It remindes me that I belong to something greater than myself. I recognize that I'm a very small part of a very large organic universe and I'm reminded that there is no way to find an absolute answer to everything. My job isn't to find the answer but to seek it. To seek it not only in myself but in others. Once I am able to step outside myself I can empathize with the others who share the universe.
There is no golden ticket at the end of it. I'm not expecting compensation for my suffering in the next incarnation. I am just celebrating the opportunity I've been given to explore with all the senses available to me what has been created.
choralrocker8 August 2012 at 12:48amPosts: 8 (0 today)Status: offline
Grew up Catholic...became Episcopalian....now an Atheist....Went through a faith crisis a few years ago as I struggled with being an alcoholic.....Prayed as hard as ever for some kind of divine help to keep me from continually F*&%ing up drinking and really disappointing my wife and kids.....of course, I got no help from God.....It really bothered me that I had lost my faith....so, through the magic of Google, I started researching faith and God, and the more I researched, the farther away from having faith I became....It just makes no sense to me.....I am not dissing it's positive effects on other people, but I can't see any situation that would ever cause me to believe again....really a shame, as a part of me really misses having faith....it seems that whenever an untimely death happens, and one questions why God would take away this person, the minister, or priest always answers something to the effect...."We can't understand why God does what he does".......Well, my friend battled 4 years fighting cancer and beat it......within a year of his total remission, his wife was diagnosed stage 4 cancer and died within a couple months....if there is a God, he has a pretty sick sense of humor.
AaronAKAAtrus8 August 2012 at 1:56amPosts: 445 (0 today)Status: offline
As the op, i'd like to say i still am a christian since then though my father's side is very "relaxed" jewish.
What you said, NorthStar- one thing that annoys me is when people sort of imply that being a Christian necessarily makes you a nicer person. Yes, to be a "good" or "true" Christian you have to be nice and not hate people, but there are nice non-Christian people and mean "Christians" - and this applies to other religions as well.
Zenrider13 August 2012 at 3:40amPosts: 3538 (0 today)Status: offline
When people are brave, they believe in themselves.
When they are afraid, they turn to god.
You can quote me on that if you will.
Little rainbow13 August 2012 at 6:22amPosts: 3951 (4 today)Status: offline
we will zen,
or Peter : I'm afraid to be divine (steam)
May I speak.13 August 2012 at 12:54pmPosts: 317 (0 today)Status: offline
I would like to quote John Lennon here: I Just believe in Yoko and me. If you have no Yoko just believe in yourself, earth dwellers.