Friday, November 30, 2007

Dear Friends

Yesterday's (last night's) post was really personal for me.
It didn't get into any deep dark secrets, really, but judgment (of myself, included) is something I want so desperately to be rid of. As I said, I think it's my greatest quest on this earth, with learning patience a close second (though they certainly are connected, as patience for me involves accepting all things around me as good or what/where it/they are supposed to be - be that a screaming toddler demanding seemingly impossible things, or a jackass driver - both are who, what, and where exactly as they should be).

I mentioned religion yesterday, and my feelings on it.
I knew that most of my friends that read here - and probably strangers, should any come across this blog - are folks that belong to a religion.
While I certainly did not want to hurt others with my comments and shared thoughts, my aim was to get to the bottom of why I feel the way I do, and if it's really true that I disdain religious folks. It's a difficult thing to admit that you judge people (as "wrong") for believing differently than you do - especially when you're unacceptance of them is in part because you feel they are unaccepting of others. It is a difficult thing to discuss openly when it goes against what you know to be true and loving.
While I answered the first question, I left the second unanswered.

The answer is no.
It isn't true.
I don't believe that folks who are religious are mindless. Or automatically more judging. Or exclusionary in their relationships with their general society.
And I don't reject my friends (family included) because they belong to a (any) religion.

I was wondering the other day what religion is really about. (As I obviously don't belong to one, I can only speculate.)
It's a belief system, certainly - but I was wondering Why it exists.
I was wondering if people have it because it is very, very difficult at times to find God all by yourself.
Because rejoicing God or Jesus or Mary or Alla with others not only gives souls a sense of brotherhood (at one with God and Each Other) but it collects the common love and goodness (energy) into one place, and it's so much easier to feel God (to listen to the call of one's Spirit) with a bunch of souls who are sharing your exact same thoughts. I imagine the energy must be palpable - we can experience this many other times in life, too, get a bunch of people together with the same mind, and it's quite invigorating.
If because initially one person said "This is how I found God", and they were able to tell someone, and that someone was somehow able to find God that exact same way. Which is strange to me, as it is quite opposite of how I do it (search God out -or within, rather- for myself), but I suppose it's possible.
Or maybe in the beginning someone started asking questions in his village, and found the commonality of how and what the surrounding souls were asking of their selves and spirit, and started discussing philosophies and ideas with those same souls.
Or maybe it started with one thought - such as Love Thy Brother, and it expanded from there, the doctrine always trying to convey and explore that same simple thought.

I don't know.
But none of these things sound ill-formed to me. They all sound quite lovely, actually. I certainly couldn't blame someone for wanting to be a part of something like that.

So, as you can see, I have quite changed my mind. :)
I still believe that finding one's Truth is deeply personal and individual, and I shall continue to find my answers within, inspired by an infinite number of sources.
But I shall also continue to look for the common ground with my fellow man - and know that he, too, is seeking his Truth at every moment.

6 comments:

KreativeMix said...

Wow!! your posts are really insightful and thought-provoking. Excellent!!

Melissia said...

Can you hear me yelling YES from where you are? This is what I meant- the perspective that found me some time ago. None of us can possibly know where another has been, what they have searched for in their lives, and where they found their "truth". Therefore, I want to respect other people, smile at them on their journey, and applaud the unique person and their choices. I notice I do not feel judged when I am not judging.

Many people have a strong need for community. Remember our friends talking about forming a commune- even though it was partially in jest. Maybe some people frame their religious beliefs differently than we would frame them. For instance, focusing on love and forgiveness in their religion rather than control or punishment.

Melissia

Stephanie said...

Melissia -
a couple of things.
First, I'm glad your wrote, I was a bit afraid that you were going to think "that's not what I said at all!" and I was going to have to explain myself, ie - I was accrediting you with being much more gracious, accepting,and gentle than I, and certainly did not mean to offend you or misrepresent your words or intent,
and secondly-
I swear it is the bane of my existence - this knowing something -accepting a truth in my heart and soul, and being able to apply it in my every action and judgment!
Honestly, I feel like I am the embodiment of hypocrisy!

I accept with everything that I am that all people are free, -how could I not?!?- but practicing it is a different matter entirely.

I think I must be really messed up!

Stephanie said...

Melissia -
ps, that's what I So Admire about the mama's - everyone but me has it so together.
I can't help but hope that the gentleness rubs off on me.

Melissia said...

I have been meaning to comment on this. You are not less together than the rest of us. That is so not true. You are a wonderful mama and I respect and admire you in so many ways.

Melissia

Stephanie said...

Well, I certainly thank you for saying so! :)