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Author Topic: Struggling with a path and finding others who hold the same vvalues  (Read 4356 times)
Oaksworn
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« Reply #15: April 23, 2008, 10:31:19 am »

Basically, the solstice/equinox cycle is one set, and the 'fire festivals' (Imbolc, Beltane, Lammas, Samhain) are the other set.

Oh, ok, I was thinking something more along the lines of solstice/equinox/fire festivals were one set and the lunar cycle was the other.

How does the lunar cycle fit in?  Just another excuse to get together and celebrate?
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"Then I will tell you a great secret, Captain. Perhaps the greatest of all time. The molecules of your body are the same molecules that make up this station, and the nebula outside, that burn inside the stars themselves. We are starstuff. We are the universe made manifest, trying to figure itself out. As we have both learned, sometimes the universe requires a change of perspective. " ~ Delenn, Babylon 5

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Jenett
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« Reply #16: April 23, 2008, 10:35:53 am »

Thank you for all your replies. My views on homosexuality changed since going back to Catholicism,maybe that's what changed it somewhat. I guess i should try to leave it alone,including transgendered people. I still frown upon abortion though and would prefer a man and woman to raise a family,but perhaps i should relax a bit.

If it were me, I'd probably be looking at *why* I felt that way. I used to be a devout Catholic, spent a lot of time struggling with the questions around homosexuality - and used to be pro-life, too.

What changed for me? Knowing people.

I looked at people I met - not through religious stuff, but through school and other interests - who were GLBT. I looked at their relationships, at the things they wanted, and could not, for the life of me, come up with a good reason to deny them the love and partnership I wanted. Doing so seemed cruel, and I did not want to have much to do with a deity who would create people, create them in ways where that was what and who they loved, and then expect them to deny that. (And then I ended up in an 'alternative' relationship myself, in this case, polyamorous, which made me do even more thinking.)

One book that later made a big impact on me was a book called _Stranger at the Gate_ by Mel White. He's a former ghostwriter for several of the major evangelical preachers - and he's also gay. That book is a discussion of how he came to terms with it, and what it meant in his life, and why it was so necessary. He's stayed Christian.

Abortion - no one I want to spend time with views it lightly. But the reality is that birth control fails. *Not* using birth control means that women are likely to have more children than they can fully support, with a lower quality of life, and fewer opportunities and options (especially in terms of higher education, but also in other ways.) I don't think that's necessarily a good thing. (Abstinence is a nice idea in theory - but problematic in practice - and, as mentioned, not entirely compatible with a number of Pagan path worldviews.)

What I'd *really* like is an absolutely certain and reversible form of birth control that worked for all women. But we don't have that yet.

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The thing is with looking at so many religions,i tend to get frustrated that i can't find a path and keep switching,trying to find a place to belong;something to be passionate about,relate to and defend,since i am a very emotional person and can sometimes get worked up about things.

One thing that helped me very much when I was leaving Catholicism, and yet knowing that religion in general is important to me was to spend a year doing a lot of reading without committing to anything in particular - and I made a lot of lists of what was important to me.

Structured ritual with other people happens to be important to me: it scratches a particular itch in my head that personal practice alone (or unstructured ritual) doesn't. I wanted a path I could grow with. After some reflection, I wanted a path I could do priest-like leadership work in (which is not open to me, as a woman, in Catholicism.) I wanted a path that put high value on the quality of the relationships, not first and foremost on the number or genders involved. A path that encouraged independent learning, research, and understanding (and in fact, expects that kind of self-awareness.)

That all lead me to more-or-less Wicca (I'm a priestess in an initiatory mystery-focused tradition, but it depends a bit what your definition of Wicca is. Religious witchcraft, anyway.) People who knew me in high school? Likely to be a little shocked, but I am *very* happy, and I think I'm personally much better off.
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Jenett
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« Reply #17: April 23, 2008, 10:41:17 am »

How does the lunar cycle fit in?  Just another excuse to get together and celebrate?

Traditionally, the lunar esbats are 'working' rituals (for magic, healing, divination, scrying, etc.) and the solar ones are 'celebratory' (ritual drama, stories, feasting, seasonal activities, etc.) A lot of groups blur these two these days, though.
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Oaksworn
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« Reply #18: April 23, 2008, 11:04:06 am »

Traditionally, the lunar esbats are 'working' rituals (for magic, healing, divination, scrying, etc.) and the solar ones are 'celebratory' (ritual drama, stories, feasting, seasonal activities, etc.) A lot of groups blur these two these days, though.

That helps clarify things in my mind a great deal.  Thanks, Jennett.
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