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Christianity vs. Paganism

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posted on Aug, 17 2011 @ 11:49 PM
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I have no idea where to put this topic, nor was I able to find any like it in the history.

I am having an odd spiritual experience that may be conflicting in the world of "organization."

See, I was raised Christian. Believing in God is not a problem for me (perhaps some of His followers are more problematic) and enjoy reading the New Testament. I have a wonderful pagan friend who is into Druidism. I have no issue with people with different beliefs, and am greatly fascinated (this is why I had problems with organized religions - not God). My friend is helping me meditate as I go through depression, and I can feel the love of God.

And other energies! It blew me away. This is where I can't talk to people in my church, because we all know that this crap gets branded "devilish" because they don't understand. My friend is helping me with meditation as I go through a rough time in life, and to relax and calm my mind.

We went outside on a full moon to watch a meteor shower a few nights ago, and I could feel the energy from the Moon. As I type right now I feel like I am laughing at myself for sounding like a hippy. This is all old stuff for him, but very new for me. The Moon felt like it had a feminine energy, and the sun was masculine. I then began to tell him all my life it always felt like the Seasons had different moods and energies for me, and Halloween was a big one. I am a very spiritual person, and was taught to worship only God.

I feel that these energies are from God, since he created the Universe. My pagan friend believes in the same energy, just different interpretation - all fine by me. I started to look up Druid holidays, and I wanted to participate in them, it felt like some truth was in them.

I do not worship other gods, but is it wrong as a Christian to participate in these things? I don't feel it is evil, I feel it is the exact opposite - being in touch with God's creation. And that maybe the roots of these beliefs can all have a bit of truth in them.

Please no religion bashing, or zealotry. I'd like to hear from people of faith on both sides of Christianity and Paganism (any sector, it you understand the spirituality aspect I was referring too earlier).
edit on 18-8-2011 by UndesirableNo1 because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 18 2011 @ 12:27 AM
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Jesus said that there is no greater commandment then loving god with all your heart and loving your neighbor as yourself. Do this, and you get a ticket to heaven. Jesus said that no other commandment is greater than these, so as long as you follow these two, you can do whatever you wish, ESPECIALLY if you think it is strengthening your love to god and the world around you. Peace!


Remember, that the bible also says that god is love. That is what god is. God is LOVE! God is nothing but LOVE and that is why you have to understand that God is one. God cannot be love if hates or wish harm upon anyone and this is why it is the most important commandment! God is love and anyone who tells you different, even if it IS written in the bible, is a liar.

For people who want to go to heaven, Jesus made it simple, love god and understand that god is one (LOVE), and love your neighbor.



Mark 12:28-31

28And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all?

29And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:

30And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.

31And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.
edit on 18-8-2011 by arpgme because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 18 2011 @ 12:39 AM
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hi im not religious at all but i do feel a connection to mother earth and nature. not so much spiritual but a sense of awe and gratitude for this planet. we've been here for millions of years. we came from the earth so i think it's perfectly natural to feel some gratitude for this world. i think you just feel alive.



posted on Aug, 18 2011 @ 12:55 AM
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reply to post by UndesirableNo1
 


I consider myself to be both and was raised in a Christian church. I consider myself a Mystic Christian as opposed to a fundamentalist Christian. Aside from the Christian church saying that it is the only true religion, I see no reason why one can't resonate to both belief systems.

In other words- there is only one God, one creator, but there are many names and many ways of understanding the one God, not just the one way that mainstream Christianity says is "right."



edit on 18-8-2011 by coyotepoet because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 18 2011 @ 12:58 AM
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I don't think it's wrong to be in nature. Just don't forget that the creation is not the Creator.



posted on Aug, 18 2011 @ 01:07 AM
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reply to post by UndesirableNo1
 


(Note to Christians:- You are welcome to condemn me as much as you like. I know which side I'm on)

a] No, it isn't wrong.

b] Yes, Christians will try and tell you it is.

I left Christianity, and converted to Hinduism in 2007. I didn't do that because of theological abstractions, either; I've multiple paranormal experiences involving Kali and Durga Ma, some of which took place before I even knew what either of those Goddesses looked like, and only learned that via searching online.

There were a number of precursor experiences which led to this decision; one of which was my viewing of Tom Hanks' film, The Green Mile, where I realised that I could no longer tolerate a belief system based on guilt and fear.

In late 2007, online I also came across a man in his late 20s who was involved with the Church of Satan in California. He had been chronically abused as a child and teenager by his father, to the point where he had severe spinal cord injuries, and was in constant pain. This was after my initial contact with Kali in around April to July of that year.

We spent several months talking, and in the process, he gradually began to extract himself from Satanism. For the most part, I was not evangelical towards him in any way; I simply asked him questions about the church, and his upbringing, and let him speak. My last contact with him, was one in which he told me that he was leaving both California, and the church, and was going to attempt to begin a completely new life. I interpreted that experience as a validation, that it is still possible to have a relationship with God, and actively work on the side *of* God, outside Christianity.

I have no antagonism towards Christianity at all at this point, to the degree that I actually kept studying Christian theology after leaving the church myself. Jesus was and is a wonderful teacher, with a beautiful message that ultimately, is more consistent with many other religious systems than most Christians realise. It just isn't for me any more.

The bottom line is that Christianity's claim of spiritual exclusivity is a lie. Islam makes the same claim, and logically they can't both be right. There is spiritual life outside of Semitic monotheism; (often a lot more than within it, truth be told) and contrary to what is claimed, Yahweh *doesn't* cease to love you after you go.
edit on 18-8-2011 by petrus4 because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 18 2011 @ 01:09 AM
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post removed for serious violation of ATS Terms & Conditions



posted on Aug, 18 2011 @ 01:12 AM
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post removed for serious violation of ATS Terms & Conditions



posted on Aug, 18 2011 @ 01:37 AM
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reply to post by petrus4
 


That is really refreshing to hear. I don't think I would worship anything else but God, but I'm trying to come to grasps if it's wrong to ADMIT other spiritual dieties and energies exist. Like each bit of belief has a bit of truth to it, as opposed to 'WE ARE RIGHT AND NO ONE ELSE IS" like you said. Yahweh, Allah, God...I believe to be the same source of "god."
Could you please tell me about your paranormal experiences with these goddesses that made themselves apparent to you before you were aware of their existance? That is really fascinating.
edit on 18-8-2011 by UndesirableNo1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 18 2011 @ 09:18 AM
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Originally posted by UndesirableNo1
Could you please tell me about your paranormal experiences with these goddesses that made themselves apparent to you before you were aware of their existance? That is really fascinating.
edit on 18-8-2011 by UndesirableNo1 because: (no reason given)


I was in a relationship at the time, with a now ex-girlfriend. This was also a couple of months after my final denouncement from a Christian who I had considered a mentor as a teenager. On MSN, he referred to me as Satan's property, and that was because I rejected his offer to go to a couple of church services. The relationship with the ex was extremely restrictive, as well; I'd lost all of my former friends, and only saw my mother and a younger brother, maybe once a week. I virtually never left the house, either. I was about as far down as I thought I could go.

One day on an online mailing list I happened to be on, someone posted a link to a meditation exercise; visualising the contents of the heart chakra. I'd been into a bit of somewhat New Age stuff for probably two years before this point, and so decided to give it a go, in order to see what would happen.

After beginning to meditate for a bit, I started getting some mental imagery of a particularly barren landscape; sand, some dead trees, that kind of thing. Looking around, I suddenly noticed an unmarked, hexagonal wooden tower in the distance. I wasn't sure of what type of wood it was supposed to be built out of, but for some reason got rosewood.

After moving toward it, I suddenly found myself inside it. I wasn't sure how, because it didn't seem as though there were any doors on the outside. It was lit by a couple of flame braziers, and in one corner, reclining on her back in front of me, was a black (and when I say black, I mean *black*, like onyx, not African American) woman. The single most striking thing about her was her eyes. I can't completely remember them now; but usually by looking at a person's eyes, you can tell to some extent what nationality they are. Even though hers looked more or less identical to human eyes, I could somehow tell that they weren't...and the shock of that was what brought me out of the state.



Ma Durga first came to me several months later. I was sitting at my computer one night, and suddenly began to have very strong, vivid mental imagery of what initially looked like a very small child sitting on the edge of my computer desk, looking at me. She had very large, dark eyes, and probably the single most striking thing about her that I noticed at the time, was the pinkness of her complexion. She wasn't white, as such...her skin was really pink. She only would have been around three feet tall, and she had very small, fine hands and feet.

When I tried to identify her on Google over the next day or so, this is what I found.



Jai Kali Ma! Jai Durga Ma!

edit on 18-8-2011 by petrus4 because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 18 2011 @ 09:40 AM
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reply to post by petrus4
 


I would never condemn you, my friend. I was taught in philosophy class that there can only be one truth, however. So how are we to determine that except by examining all other possibilities? Buddhism works for you, and that's fine, christianity works for me, and that's fine. But who's right?




posted on Aug, 18 2011 @ 11:53 AM
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Originally posted by The Endtime Warrior
reply to post by petrus4
 


I would never condemn you, my friend. I was taught in philosophy class that there can only be one truth, however. So how are we to determine that except by examining all other possibilities? Buddhism works for you, and that's fine, christianity works for me, and that's fine. But who's right?



Neither of us are wrong.

Hinduism has a concept called the Ishta Devata; the God of the heart. For me, that's Kali. For you, it's Yahweh or Jesus Christ. Both are equally spiritually powerful and legitimate.

When the Bible or Quran says that God is one, I think that is true; but I think it also means something a little different from what they thought. I interpret it as meaning that God can have different faces sometimes, which tend to be relevant to such things as culture, ethnicity, the time, and so on; but if you look, you'll notice that the core message is generally the same.

Another Hindu concept which I think is relevant here, is the division of the scriptures between what are called Srutis and Smrtis. The Srutis are those scriptures classified as containing universal, permanent spiritual truths; things which don't change, and which tend to be consistent all over the planet, regardless of who discovers them. This is the reason why, for example, you get Hindu or Buddhist devotees meditating with beads, and Catholics can do the same. That method works, irrespective of where it is used.

The Smrtis, on the other hand, are documents which refer to specific legal systems that are attached to a particular point in time, or specific religious figures such as Jesus, Muhammed, Moses and so on. The Charter of Medina would be an example of this sort of document possibly, in an Islamic context.

The point is that God doesn't change, but Earthly conditions do. So the division comes in when the different societies and cultures try to worship God, and some of them assume that only their specific way is right. If you look, though, there are particular principles, ideas, and practices that are always present within any true religion, regardless of the culture. In that way, we can say that God is the same. We just use different forms to relate to Him, depending on where we were born, or what was revealed in that particular time or place.



posted on Aug, 18 2011 @ 11:56 AM
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I'm sorry but one thing really stood out to me out of your entire post:


Originally posted by petrus4
The point is that God doesn't change, but Earthly conditions do.


Brilliant



posted on Aug, 18 2011 @ 08:02 PM
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reply to post by The Endtime Warrior
 





I would never condemn you, my friend. I was taught in philosophy class that there can only be one truth, however. So how are we to determine that except by examining all other possibilities? Buddhism works for you, and that's fine, christianity works for me, and that's fine. But who's right?


You both are. There is only one truth but many perspectives of that one truth seen from many different directions.



posted on Aug, 21 2011 @ 11:15 AM
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In my life,I have moved thru different and evolving spiritual experiences.As one philosophy satisfied my need,I moved on to another,learning all I could,or needed to,about each one.I do not see this as a right or wrong issue,but simply a matter of people settling on one religious theology and philosophy at any given time which speaks to the higher self in our journey toward enlightenment along our life path.There are things that speak to our higher self, and we respond to this by grasping it's truths and embracing them as our own,at that time.Typically,here in America,our first brush with organized religion is via Christianity,and the practices and beliefs we learn are those of our parents etc. as we grow and mature,we begin to question things,and in time,move away from the beliefs we are spoon fed in search of our own truths.This is as it should be.

I believe,now,that the "God" we seek and try and give shape,meaning and form to,is but an outward yearning for what can be found within each of us,if we but look..In other simpler terms,we are each of us,god.We have the power to create or destroy,spread love or hate,cause fear or elation etc. Look within your own hearts and minds for your answers. Religion has caused enough strife and division,as anyone who adheres too closely to it,cannot accept any thinking outside it,and in fact,is rendered unable to think fully for themselves because they are so tightly bound to it's tenets/rules etc.

Life is but a journey. Journey safely,journey well.

Free your mind and the rest will follow,and trust your intuition,it will not deceive you.




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