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Author Topic: Birth religion 'closure'  (Read 6270 times)
treekisser
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« Reply #15: December 14, 2010, 10:55:38 pm »

I blocked it out and walled it off, and ultimately I realized what a disservice I did myself.  Everything, my friend, that touches you, good or ill, forges you.  It is the fire, and hammer, and anvil of your soul.  I came to realize that if I did not have that as part of my life's lessons, I would be another person, and maybe not necessarily for the better. 

Yes. Yes, very much this. And apart from anything else, it'd be a waste to ditch all the effort spent in whatever's left behind. Something's bound to be useful and can be integrated into a new self.

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I am twenty years and a few months of change away from coming to terms with my past, but when I dfinally did, I was able to let go of the anger, and to be able to say, rationally, "These are the reasons I weighed that, and measured it, and found it wanting."  It took me almost fifteen years of that, walking around with a cloud of fury and resentment, to get to that moment, and it made things harder than it had to be.

I notice you and quite a number of other people have talked about negative feelings towards your birth religion. But is it the religion itself, or the institutions and people associated with it? Because I don't have any ill feeling towards my birth religion conceptually - but I do against some of the associated cultures and people.
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Ellen M.
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« Reply #16: December 14, 2010, 10:56:57 pm »

This is partly it, I think. It doesn't really make sense to start from scratch somewhere else and overlook stuff I'm more familiar with.

Or...maybe it's just procrastination. I'm pretty good at that when it comes to important things.  Undecided

Could I ask what got you into exploring Catholicism?

It's always been interesting to me since I was raised Protestant and it was this shiny, exotic approach to Christianity. Once I got started on the Pagan track I'd always been drawn to learn more about Mary's role in Catholicism and also how saints and angels play a role in everyday spirituality. I went to Mass one week held in the school chapel and decided it was pretty neat. Smiley Much preferable to the Lutheran Eventide services held the night before, at any rate.

There's too much that Catholicism and I disagree with at a basic level for me to do much with it, but I enjoy a lot of the trappings, and at the very least it's a refreshing approach to Christianity (from the view of an ex-Baptist, heh).
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Ellen M.
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« Reply #17: December 14, 2010, 11:00:41 pm »

I notice you and quite a number of other people have talked about negative feelings towards your birth religion. But is it the religion itself, or the institutions and people associated with it? Because I don't have any ill feeling towards my birth religion conceptually - but I do against some of the associated cultures and people.

Both, for me. I just will never sit right with a religion that has sin and hell anywhere in it. And the One True Wayism gets old, fast - and that's plugged directly into most Christianity, along with evangelism and going out to convert the masses. Those are things that I completely reject for myself, and so Christianity and I will always ruffle a few feathers. But that doesn't mean that I can't learn from it, or that I can't view some Christian concepts in a decidedly different light.

For example, I believe in all the deities ever in the existence of forever, but I don't believe in them in the same sense the original practitioners do/did. I believe Yahweh's existence is just as true as Brighid's, but Yahweh isn't omnipotent/omniscient/etc, he's just got a great PR department. Grin
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Stormwalker
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« Reply #18: December 15, 2010, 09:02:16 am »

I notice you and quite a number of other people have talked about negative feelings towards your birth religion. But is it the religion itself, or the institutions and people associated with it? Because I don't have any ill feeling towards my birth religion conceptually - but I do against some of the associated cultures and people.

In all honesty, the further I get from it, and ever since I let go of it, the less I understand it myself.

I've never been good with "faith."  While I can accept authority, authority based on "Because I said so"  a case of "Shut up, they explained" has never sat well with me.  It's probably one of the reasons I am a solitary practicioner, and, perversely, while I have graduated to the more formal liturgical forms of worship (A thing which I clearly divide from my own spiritual practice).  In such a setting there is a sense of contact with immanence.  Separate it from a lot of the Western and American cultural Protestantism, delve into the Eastern source, and I have found Catholic/Orthodox religion to be a very mystical one.  A latin high mass is transcendant, and if not that, Eastern rites (Such as the liturgy of St. John Crystonom[sic]) are near equal to it, for me.  There is an majestic sense of The All that I have not found anywhere else.

And it is odd how in a church full of people, I can experience such things in such a private sense.  I'm not good with circles, communal worship, or congregations with a bunch of hugging and hand shaking and alleluias.  This is my time.  Let me just be, so I can be still, center my mind, and listen with my inner senses.

I've come to realize as I have grown older that while I may enjoy wandering the paths less travelled, many people just plain need the clearly marked road. 

I don't know if I could articulate it properly.  Maybe because so many people walking the road focus either on the goal, or turn the journey into a chore, rather than appreciating it?  And  insist on not letting me stop and smell the flowers, or rest by the beautiful lake over there?  It was certainly an anger risen from resentment.

I don't know if that is any clearer.  In some senses I am still working on it, and in another - I have let go of it.  It no longer has power over me.
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