Thursday, March 5, 2009

No Single Creed

The majority of all peoples of the world choose to have a spiritual base from which they make their decisions in life. Be it Jewish, Hindi, Christian, Protestant, Muslim, Methodist, Catholic, Buddhist, there is a plethora of "faith" bases to study and eventually, belong to. Even the lack of faith is a belief in itself.Life seems more empowering when you know there's something far better, finer, more wise and loving than anything human. And we tend to believe in a reward. Something that will make the trials and sorrows of life more valuable. My Mother used to say: "Offer it up." She meant, if anything hurt us, to offer our pain to a suffering soul. The belief in a God simply seems to round out and form a life based in humane and kind acts, forgiveness, mercy, care, love.
It's not the belief in God by any name that ever caused a problem, like war. It's religion. Organized religion proscribes that the many must conform to the beliefs of the few or risk damnation, as defined by their particular faith. And most disturbingly, you must believe that their "one" is the ONLY one.

No single creed has a monopoly on spiritual truths.
The word religion derived from the latin actually means "to bind in fear" or "bound with fright". The old latin base is religio which means "fear of God" and I realize this is part of the dogma in several organized states of worship. On closer examination I realized I was raised - not to fear God - but hell.

Now here we are, free to worship our God in the traditions and rituals of the faith we chose. When someone quotes Biblical scripture I am open and anxious to absorb their opinion. When someone quotes Koran teachings I am just as open to it, same as the Book of Mormon. I feel as open to all spiritual opinions and tenets as I hope others are to mine.When the beauty of faith is dusty with the film of personal prejudice, i.e. "believe or burn" then I know I'm in the presence of an organized, ingrained and very inaccurate representative of purity in faith. Even Satanism doesn't teach eternal suffering.
Recently I was in need of good wishes from any corner, and I came here to you, my Constant Reader, for balm. I don't know if I received Christian prayers, Jewish songs, incantations, chants, whispers in the wind, or the fierce powers of healing on the smoke - what's the difference?? I knew I'd be protected so I was. By using such good and loving wishes I was able to help myself out of despair. My old pain is a useless memory - my gratitude is eternal.

I am here to offer a thought:
If you speak of your God with unforgiving blind self-righteousness that you have the only God that matters, if you pray with your personal self in mind, how praying will make YOU stronger in YOUR faith, more assured in YOUR beliefs, this is the ego that will guide your spirit. That is, YOU will be your own spirit. I can't respect that. I'll hear it, try to understand, but can't abide it. I believe my spirit is finer than me, and speaking to my God is not to further a stronger faith but to raise the intentions of my brothers and sisters to that God, for whom sincere selfless prayer is its own end. If however, you offer solace by prayer, meditation or ANY healing means you firmly believe, and do it with the recipient in mind, the person you're offering this for, if you SEE your brother's need reflected in your own need, without looking through him, I believe your life will need no further guide but intuition, for you are already on the gentle, loving and self-less path you seek - no matter its name.
NAMASTE




18 comments:

ThomasLB said...

This post reminded me of something I read years ago. It's too long to leave as a comment, so I posted it on my blog here. I think you'll like it.

Big Mark 243 said...

I liked Thomas' post ... and I enjoyed reading this one. One of the many issues that I have long held with organized religon is the exclusivity of it. But that is me.

Again, a way cool entry. Glad you are feeling better.

Cathy said...

I urge a visit to ThomasLB's blog, he's the first comment here. Take special note of "Donkeys" it's wisdom there for the sharing.

FrankandMary said...

My Mother, who was a Catholic, saw prayer sometimes as thanks to God, sometimes as a chat with God, and often as meditation. She was not a believer in praying "for" stuff. I want to get a really good job(I'm projecting here ;-0) so I'll pray really hard. No. That was not Mom, and I have always found that sort of praying silly.
So I tend to think your readers sent you good meditative vibes & you benefited from them. I hope that was the case. ~Mary

Gerry said...

Another beautiful entry from you with healing thoughts I can relate to. I think there is such a fine line between religious practices that will hurt and discourage and those that will lift others, sometimes coming from the same religion but practiced in different ways. I think religion can be made to express the hubris and mean spiritedness of a person who is not constantly working to recognize those traits in the self. It is necessary to examine closely any opinion expressed to others with the possibility of causing pain. So you have courageously pinpointed the differences in this entry. So glad you are feeling better as you have the gift of lucid thought to give to many that must be treasured.

Heli gunner Tom said...

Hi Cathy,
Thank you for sharing your inner soul/thoughts with me concerning the corrupt VA system. I think that we have more in common than you think... and I respect your views even if I disagree with some. I don't like prejudice either: "pre-judging with out sufficient data."
It would be so nice to have your email address so we could talk and visit. Mine is: tschuckman@aol.com

Have a great day!

Hugs,
Tom S
Disabled Vietnam Veteran--retired Chrysler worker: 30.5 years.

Indigo said...

I've often thought it strange someone would believe a thing because they were simply told to believe. In essence - they went with the popular thought process. To me you have to believe it, truly believe the thing you believe or it's just mere words given in comfort.

Back to that thought, how can you believe in something if you don't first believe in yourself. As for when I say prayers on the smoke...I visualize it, see it, feel it with all that I am. Someone once said it doesn't sound the same from me, maybe not...or perhaps they didn't have the power of belief behind it.

At the end of the day do I believe in something greater than myself. Most certainly. Organized religion...not so much. I think in order to believe you need to find it in yourself, not be told what or how to believe.

I'm delighted your were able to find the strength from our words and beliefs to carry you forward dear friend. (Hugs)Indigo

Beth said...

Nicely said, Cathy. I think we all have our own concept of spirituality, and I have little use for dogma.

Beth

Loving Annie said...

Very wise post. I wish it would be published in every newspaper and classroom trhought the U.S.
It really said it well, all of it.

Bucko (a.k.a., Ken) said...

Any time I feel spiritual, it is for others. I would never consider it for myself, period. So, here is letting you know you are in my thoughts and hoping you find what you are seeking :o)

Remo said...

There are so many tenents with common beliefs it seems foolish (and a bit arrogant) to presume one has the corner on the others.

I'll stick with the basics from the early Egyptians.

Love the Sun and it will love you.

Missy said...

I am very open like you Luddie when it comes to religions. Although I believe Jesus Christ is savior, I don't believe that everyone else who doesn't believe will rot in hell..

tony said...

Yes FAITH in a belief keeps us sane sometimes..........but the Power that religions gain from this innocient faith that causes all the problems.The Political Power gained by Organised religions has caused so much pain over the centuries.
Love Christ....be wary of Christians I Guess?

Spunky Texan said...

Very nice blog, I like it

DB said...

So many things you write here are ringing right now in space and are needed.

DB

Lori said...

Very nice entry. Christ said that his followers would be known by the love they had for one another. Most organized religions have fallen far short of that, haven't they?

natalie said...

Cathy
how beautiful
thank you! inspirational!
love,natalie

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