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Lynn, An answer. Long.

Posted by deirdrehbrt on February 20, 2006, at 14:53:13

You asked what turned me away from Christianity... That, for me is kind of a huge question. First, though, and this is part of it, was your description of Halloween.
Halloween is in actuality a Christian holiday that is celebrated on the same day as a Pagan holiday. It is the evening "een" before All saints day.
The Pagan holiday is Samhain, pronounced Saowin. It is our New Years day. Many Pagan faiths, and there are quite a few, are earth based. Our year and our faith revolve around the cycle of the year. Samhain is that time during the year when the dark of night is more dominant than the daylight. This is one of the two days of the year when the veil between this world and the next is thin. We believe that on this day, more than others, we are closer to our beloved departed.
The point is, that Satan has nothing to do with it. Satan is a Judeo-Christian concept that has nothing to do with Paganism, unless Satanism is to be included under the umbrella term of Paganism. Personally, I consider Satanism part of the Judeo-Christian traditions as Satan is a Biblical construct. I see Satanism as an active rebelion against the God of the Bible, and completely apart from Paganism.
Anyway, This is part of the reason that I'm not Christian. In studying, I've found that Christianity has completely misrepresented the faiths of the lands and peoples which they conquered through military might. Then, they systematically destroyed as many records as possible of those faiths. Thousands and thousands of pagan people, Native Americans and Europeans were killed when they wouldn't adopt Christianity. This is another part of the reason.
Too, I found that I couldn't adopt the Christian viewpoint that billions of people were put on this earth for no other purpose than to suffer for eternity in Hell. I do understand the Christian apologetics that are used to support this position, but I just can't reconcile within my mind the concepts of a loving God, and one that condemns most of the people created to eternal torture.
Now, I have come to the conclusion that there is one primal source or supreme expression of divinity. The Jews believed in a God that had many facets, thus the many names for God. Most Pagans believe in a number of different 'gods or goddesses', but recognize them all as aspects of one incomprehensible divinity.
In the end, I think that we all are created by one. I don't believe that one will leave any of us to suffer eternal punishment.
I also reject the TULIP of Calvanism. I believe that we all posess a seed of goodness, and that deity is present, in some sense, in even the worst of us.
As did Christians for the first few hundred years, I believe in the possibility of reincarnation. Deity, Creation, and all of the wonders of the universe are too much for any created being to understand in a single lifetime.
I believe the Bible to be a marvelous work of wisdom and history. I don't though believe in the literal interpretation of the entire document. I also recognize that a large number of the passages used to condemn certain people are mistranslated. Some of these words are "homosexual", and "witch". I don't expect any forthcoming translation though to translate these words correctly.
My family is quite religious. Some Christian faiths exclude Catholics from their definition of Christian, but such is life. My family is Catholic. I have a distant relative who may one day be declared a Catholic Saint. She started the Sisters Contemplative of the Precious Blood.
My immediate family was not exempted from abuse at the hands of priests. Personally, I don't know if it happened to me. I know that I was present when it occurred. I know also, from X-rays, that I have had some serious injuries. I don't know when they happened, and my parents have been no help. Whether this affected my choices, I don't know.
In the end, I was looking for a faith that expressed my concept of Divinity. I found that in the modern interpretation of the Old religion. We are a people of peace. We are a people that understands that Deity exists in all of her creations, and as such, the earth, and all who dwell within and upon her are expressions of Deity, thus deserving of our respect and care.
We aren't Satanists. We don't worship evil. We do recognize that there is evil in this world. Pagans believe that evil results from ignorance and a closed heart. This results in the sins of envy, sloth, pride, etc. Again, we don't believe in a Satan to cause evil, nor do we look for absolution. We believe that evil shall be repayed to those who practice it, just as good will return to those who do good.
That's just a bit of what I believe, and why I believe it. I hope that it at least begins to answer your question.




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