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Author Topic: Earth based v.s other systems  (Read 18326 times)
Marilyn (ABSENTMINDED)
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Last Login:February 06, 2013, 08:12:28 pm
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Religion: free-flowing animist, Dudeist Priest
TCN ID: Absentminded
Posts: 2725


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« Reply #23: January 01, 2009, 01:37:35 pm »

I intened no offense but it seems it is easier for many younger ones to wave a knife or light a candle then it is to do inner introspection...but that is another issue.

Well, no offense back, but introspection isn't really the point of a lot of religions, and age has nothing to do with it.  My own religion is focused outwards, not inwards.  I am not the centre of the universe, even my own, and doing things solely for the purpose of personal development and attunement is more self-involvement than I can sustain for any length of time.

I think you are seeing gods as symbols of something else, possibly of their areas of control, and wondering why people worship the symbols (i.e. the gods) rather than the abstract concepts themselves.

Basically, my gods are not symbols, and they are not abstract.  They are Beings, and their concerns are larger than the internal development of individual humans.  When i enter into a bargain with Old Dog it is not to improve myself or to become more enlightened.  That can be a side effect, but the main purpose is to accomplish something physical in His area of control.  I ask for and get rewards for doing so, and the relationship between us is real-world and transactional.

I am part of the world.  My religion is not bound up in myself.  It is bound up in the world.  Whether I am enlightened or not is less important than what I accomplish in the world I live in.  My patron cannot make a speech asking for funding for wild animal relocation, at least not without causing a stir that would overshadow the cause and distract or scare the people with the cheque-books.  I can and I do.  It is a pragmatic arrangement, because I have a pragmatic relationship with deity.

It is not youth at fault here.  I am almost fifty.  I have no existential angst about the existence of gods or the purpose of humanity.  I have sufficient proof of the first for myself, and I don't care about the second.  At the end of this life I don't want to look back and say 'I thought about this, I examined the possibility of that, I meditated on the other.'  I want a list of concrete accomplishments, done for, with, and because of my gods.  I also want the ledger to balance.

When I do actual ritual, whether it is the Wiccish high theatre tingly and empowering stuff, or the family real and gritty stuff, there are things I intend to accomplish with it in real world terms.  It is not 'just' the tools and trappings, but those tools and trappings are part of it.  I don't want to do without the ribbons and candles anymore than I want to offer 'symbolic' tobacco.  I am real, the world is real, my gods are real, and my tools are real.  I could get by with any of those, including the first, existing solely in my imagination, but I see no need to.

Ecstatic, transformative, and enlightening events happen, but they are not the point or goal of my religion.  I do not do things for those three results - they are benes and side effects of what I do do.

Absent
Logged

"There's nothing wrong with you that reincarnation won't cure."
- Jack E. Leonard

Blessed are the cracked, for it is they who let in the light.

Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack, a crack in everything
That's how the light gets in

L Cohen

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