The Devil's Gonna Getcha! - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
Reply
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 60 Old 09-11-2002, 07:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
Kylix's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: drifting off in space
Posts: 1,470
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I guess this thread goes in the spirituality forum. I was wondering what everyone's beliefs are concering the devil, Satan, Lucifer whatever you wanna call him/it. Do you believe the devil exists? To me, (and pardon me if I step on anyone's toes) that the notion of a devil living below the hard earth waiting and creating chances to lure ppl in temptation is almost silly. I can understand the belief that there is evil in this world and that we must be careful of it but is the idea of there being character who instigates this still prevalent? I really don't know. Spirituality matters are not ones I talk about in my everyday life. I don't attend any type of church or group that talks about spiritual matters.

Personally I believe that people are the ones that we must look out for. They are the ones that hold the capacity to do wrong. Part of the reason I love this site is cuz of the plethora of differing views here especially ones I have never heard before so...Post away I want to hear all--Christian, Jewish, Pagan, Muslim etc etc beliefs on "the devil".

Kylix
Kylix is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 of 60 Old 09-12-2002, 03:16 AM
 
khrisday's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: High Desert of California
Posts: 3,913
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I am (garden variety) Pagan. I don't believe in a "devil" or Satan character. (ironic that many folks associate Paganism with Satanic worship when most Pagans don't believe in Satan at all) I don't know, I just believe that good and evil reside in us all and it is our choice how we use it.
khrisday is offline  
#3 of 60 Old 09-12-2002, 03:35 AM
 
Arduinna's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Posts: 31,187
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
me too, what Khris said. I don't believe in the devil, I think it was made up by the church to keep people in line.
Arduinna is offline  
#4 of 60 Old 09-12-2002, 03:41 AM
 
USAmma's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Arizona
Posts: 18,573
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Hindus don't believe in the devil. They do believe in manifestations of evil in demons in some of the stories but even they are personifications of concepts, rather than actual beings. Some of them are also actual historical figures such as ancient kings or conquerors who have been made into demons or devils over the course of history-telling. Some Hindus do literally believe in demons but the ones who have studied their scriptures usually don't.

"That which appears as cold or as hot, fresh or spoiled, good fortune and bad, love and hate, effort and laziness, the exalted and the depraved, the rich and the poor, the well-founded and the ill-founded, all this is God Himself; none other than Him can we know."
--Agamas

And from the book Dancing With Siva by Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami:

"Hell, termed Naraka, is the lower astral realm of the seven chakras below the muladhara. It is a place of fire and heat, anguish and dismay, of confusion, despair and depression. Here anger, jealousy, argument, mental conflict and tormenting moods plague the mind. Access to hell is brought about by our own thoughts, words, deeds and emotions--suppressed, antagonistic feelings that court demons and their aggressive forces. Hell is not eternal. Nor is there a Satan who tempts man and opposes God's power, though there are devilish beings called asuras, immature souls caught in the abyss of deception and hurtfulness. "

Darshani

7yo: "Mom,I know which man is on a quarter and which on is on a nickel. They both have ponytails, but one man has a collar and the other man is naked. The naked man was our first president."
 
USAmma is offline  
#5 of 60 Old 09-12-2002, 05:12 PM - Thread Starter
 
Kylix's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: drifting off in space
Posts: 1,470
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I had heard that most Pagans don't believe in a devil figure. It IS ironic that people think that Pagans are devil worshippers in light of this fact.

Kylix
Kylix is offline  
#6 of 60 Old 09-12-2002, 05:17 PM
 
ladylee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: in my skin
Posts: 3,932
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Isn't it, Kylix? I don't believe in the devil.
ladylee is offline  
#7 of 60 Old 09-12-2002, 08:09 PM
 
gossamer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Houston
Posts: 3,708
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
<As Gossamer dons her flame retardant body suit>
I do believe in the Devil and Satan. I believe that even if you don't worship the Devil, you can be influenced by the Devil to commit evil deeds if you are not purposeful in your worship. As a Christian, for me that means if I am not purposeful in my worship of Christ, I can be influenced and distracted by Satan to commit deeds that are maybe not evil but definately not the will of God. Does that make sense?

Before you were conceived, I wanted you. Before you were born I loved you. Before you were a minute old, I would have died for you. That is the miracle of life. ~Maureen Hawkins~
gossamer is offline  
#8 of 60 Old 09-12-2002, 08:26 PM
 
Jazlyn's mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: So. California
Posts: 30
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Makes sense to me Gossamer!
I am also a christian. I do believe that the devil exists. But he can not make you do evil things. God has created us all with free will to choose which path we will follow!!!!
Jazlyn's mommy is offline  
#9 of 60 Old 09-13-2002, 01:38 AM
 
Super Pickle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,680
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I do believe in the devil, not a red fiery guy with horns and a pitchfork but a strong, smart, attractive angel. "The father of lies and a murderer from the beginning."
Super Pickle is offline  
#10 of 60 Old 09-13-2002, 10:26 AM
 
DaryLLL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Under a Chimpocracy
Posts: 13,153
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Pagan checking in. I do not believe in the devil. I imagine god as a male/female entity. All things, "good" and "bad", come from god.

I think Christianity is a warlike, kind of scary and mean religion with thousands of inconsistencies, absurdities, cruelties and contradictions in its holy book. In fact, as I read it, I see that "God" comes off much worse in the Bible than the "Devil!" I have heard it said, if you believe in the devil, you may think he wrote the bible to put god in a bad light!

The bible once consisted of many more books. Church fathers, at one point decided what to leave in, what to take out. I just discovered, for ex, the Infancy of Jesus, by Thomas. Wherein Jesus strikes his playmates dead and blinds their parents. Obviously, that was not a pc book!

Ezekiel and Revelations are wacky! God tells Ezekiel to eat human dung!

Back to the devil.

The devil was depicted as a fallen angel in the Bible. Lucifer means Being of Light. Nowhere was he depicted as red, with horns, cloven hoofs and a pointy tail. And a snazzy goatee! The early church fathers borrowed the idea of a being like that from the horned god of the Old Religion, called Wicca. The horned god is the male energy of god (one of his incarnations), associated with the creative energy of a ram or stag, his horns also representing the points of a plow for the field.

Worship of the golden calf was depicted as an abomination in the Bible, but was in fact, the early and already ancient religion of the earth, which made sense for hunter/gatherers and farmers. Judaism was a religion appropriate for those Jewish wanderers, and had/has a war-god, perfect for smiting the Jew's enemies.

The idea of Christ as Messiah is controversial, and it is hard to equate the god of the Old Testament, with the Christ of the New.

I don't mean to disrespect anyones' beliefs. Everyone comes to god in their own way. Or, rejects the idea altogether and becomes an atheist. Diversity is healthy.

For a rational and skeptical view of the bible, see the Biblical Errancy website, by Dennis McKinsey.
DaryLLL is offline  
#11 of 60 Old 09-13-2002, 11:21 AM
 
barbara's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: NE Ohio
Posts: 2,027
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
If one believes that we are more than flesh and blood, then the spiritual rhelm becomes a reality. It is simplistic to say there is only good and evil fighting each other in the spiritual rhelm, although, it is often discribed thus with angels portraied as sweet children and satan as the red suited mischif maker. It makes for good t.v. I suppose.

Yet, if one can look beyon one's self and the physical rhelm, there is much to experience and learn. Surely there are forces at work in the world that are beyon our limited ability to see and understand.

For now I see in part, through a darkly colored glass....
barbara is offline  
#12 of 60 Old 09-13-2002, 12:08 PM
 
1jooj's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 5,577
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Muslim in residence checking in.

I believe in Satan--he is not a powerful maker of all things evil, because all things, good and bad, come from God. Satan's "power" consists of "whispering" in our ears--you're not good enough, you're better than other people, go ahead, it won't hurt anyone, etc...I suppose, in essence, I see his role as more a test for people than anything else--since, when we take action against the whispering, it becomes powerless.

I also realize that Holy books have dual (and then some) meanings--literal and metaphor. They can appeal to people with many levels of understanding, to bring out the best of all. Kind of like Darshani's points about Hindusim. I think it is best and healthies for me to look at Scriptures with the eye and mind of a Lit student. Looking for the lessons, so to speak.

I think, if we can look at some of Satan's story as metaphor, we can learn from it. He was an angel, created of light. What great potential for good--but, when focused on doing bad--well, what a waste of potential good. How many times have I seen myself repeat that story...? Muslims refer to satan as Shaitan ar-Rajim, the Rejected. Cast out. The saddest part is that it was a choice he made.
1jooj is offline  
#13 of 60 Old 09-13-2002, 12:16 PM
 
Meiri's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Murrysville, PA
Posts: 8,869
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
I see that humans, through their choices and actions, bring evil into the world. I also see that humans, through their choices and actions, bring great love and beauty into the world too.

I don't see that an outside, transendent personification of evil is necessary to explain any evils in this world, but hey if that helps a person to cope with and find the strength to do good, then whatever works! My only problem with that is when it is projected onto others who do not share that belief.

The current Christian image of the Devil comes from many sources. Lucifer, the light-bringer, I think came from roman mythology??? The horned and hoofed image came from Pan, a Greek deity and also from the Northern European/Celtic Green Man images. Basically Christianity drew from the cultures it spread to to create the image.

Christianity did not in any way, shape or form draw from any Wiccan concepts for their devil because Wicca as such originated with Gerald Gardner back in the 1950's. The Christian image of the devil obviously is much older than that. {I recommend reading Hutton's The Triumph of the Moon if you want to see the historical roots of Wicca rather than the mythological}

There was no ONE early and ancient religion predating Judaism. Every culture and society had its own religion, and while there were similarities across many there was not a cohesive all-one faith with different names for the same Gods/Goddesses. Hunter-Gatherer cultures have a much different understanding of the Divine than agricultural cultures will.

In fact, the deeper I delve into this, the less I would say that these cultures would have considered their faiths to be "earth-based". To them(Celts, since that's what I'm studying) their religion had to do with their society and proper relationships within that society and with the Gods. Included within that proper relationship was the proper, respectful use of natural resources. Springs and streams and various locations were sacred, but the Gods(transendent individual beings generally) were the focus.

Now modern understandings are often different, and are just as valid, but that doesn't change the historical record. Let's own the modern as modern and study the history that really Was.

"What will you do once you know?"
Meiri is offline  
#14 of 60 Old 09-13-2002, 12:29 PM
 
DaryLLL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Under a Chimpocracy
Posts: 13,153
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Meiri--

Thanks for bringing even more specifics to a point I was generally trying to make!

I've only been id-ing myself as a pagan for about 2-3 yrs. Before was more of a Buddhist/Hindu, New Age sort of gal, but now find I like the earthiness of "paganism." My teen daughter has turned me on to lots of books and websites.

Still got lots of reading and living to do. Will never get all it accomplished in this lifetime. Good thing I've got more lifetimes! ;-)

best wishes
DaryLLL is offline  
#15 of 60 Old 09-13-2002, 01:52 PM
 
Pynki's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Inside the café au lait
Posts: 7,265
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The greatest trick the devil ever played was having us believe he didn't exist.

I'm not talking about the horned demon. According to the bible which i believe and some hold in contention, he was an angel , and he was the most beautiful angel who led the choral in heaven. He had the most beautiful voice. He was closest to god. And yet it was not enough for him and he though to rise above him... And so he was banished.

I think he still is real in his most beautiful way, and just as I think god manifests himself in a mostly spiritual way i think that the devil does as well. I think he uses the beauty of his mind to change peoples hearts, but in a way contrary to what god desires, and the worst part is that many people believe that they are dong what is just and right. I think he shows you the beauty that is not light, but because it is beautiful people think it is.

That is what i think and the hardest part is that i believe that God still loves him and wishes he is not what he is.

Dyan

It's lonely being the only XX in a house of XYs.
Pynki is offline  
#16 of 60 Old 09-13-2002, 04:33 PM
Banned
 
DebraBaker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: PA
Posts: 4,995
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I believe there's a Devil.

W-a-y too much evil in this world to deny his existance.

Debra Baker
DebraBaker is offline  
#17 of 60 Old 09-13-2002, 06:14 PM
 
Meiri's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Murrysville, PA
Posts: 8,869
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Quote:
W-a-y too much evil in this world to deny his existance.
So people are not responsible for their decisions to commit evil acts?

Your belief puzzles me, and would have even back when I was Christian. I never got the bit about people crediting God for any benefit they recieved or good they accomplished and crediting their Devil with any evil done in the world.

Do we or do we not have Free Will?

If God is responsible for all the good(the correlary to the Devil being responsible of all the evil), then where does that leave Free Will?

And if the Devil is responsible for all of the evil, why the threat of Hell for those who commit evil acts? Why should they be punished for something the Devil made them do?

Why the promise of Heaven for those who do good? Why should they be rewarded for God's doings?

"What will you do once you know?"
Meiri is offline  
#18 of 60 Old 09-13-2002, 07:03 PM
 
Super Pickle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 1,680
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote: "So people are not responsible for their decisions to commit evil acts?"
Oh, we are absolutely responsible for our evil acts. If a demon tempts us to do something wrong, we absolutely have free will and can refuse to give in. And certainly not all temptations come from demons or the devil--most come from within our own hearts. But sometimes there occur such evil events that are so widespread that I have to believe the devil is behind it, deceiving people. The Holocaust, for example, or the genocide in Rwanda. Or slavery or abortion. These are instances in which entire peoples are committing terrible, unnatural atrocities against their fellow humans. There is a spiritual dimension to these things. Obviously, the people involved in them were not all, every last one of them, evil to the core. The battle is not against flesh and blood (individuals) but against the powers of darkness that are far greater than the human heart.

Quote: "Why the promise of Heaven for those who do good? Why should they be rewarded for God's doings?"
This is not exactly the point...You are right on that there is no sense in being "rewarded" for doing what we were supposed to be doing all along, or for carrying out that which God himself chose to do through us. But good works don't get you into heaven. Only faith in Christ's redemptive work on the cross can do that.
Super Pickle is offline  
#19 of 60 Old 09-14-2002, 01:51 AM
 
Meiri's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Murrysville, PA
Posts: 8,869
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Faith versus Works is a whole 'nother discussion! and I don't think I want to go there tonight(especially since it's irrelevent to me)

Like I've said before, whatever helps someone make sense of the world.

"What will you do once you know?"
Meiri is offline  
#20 of 60 Old 09-14-2002, 02:09 AM
 
Jazlyn's mommy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: So. California
Posts: 30
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

YOU GO SUPER PICKLE!
Jazlyn's mommy is offline  
#21 of 60 Old 09-14-2002, 01:37 PM
 
DaryLLL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Under a Chimpocracy
Posts: 13,153
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
One way of looking at evil, without going into a black/white, good/bad, god/devil thing (look at life, see it's mostly grey areas, after all): life is messy. Life feeds on life. Humans eat meat and living plants, animals eat each other. We all fight for our hunting and feeding gounds. Men have lots of testosterone, and will fight over who is superior, who has more stuff, who gets the women. And whose god is the best! Life is messy, and only humans have to insist this or that is good, or evil. Animals kill too, but it's all about survival for them, and really it comes down to that for us too.

As far as works vs faith getting you into heaven, look honestly at your bibles. They have it both ways, sometimes you only have to follow the commandments (Jesus himself said that), sometimes you just have to say the magic words. ( I can't take anything Paul says seriously, sorry. He is so crabby and un-Jesus like. He says the effeminate won't get into heaven! Yet he was celibate. Hmmm..).

Jesus also said he came to save the lost sheep of Israel, not the Gentiles. But when the Jews rejected him and killed him and he came back, he decided to go for the Gentiles!

The commandments say to honor your parents, then Jesus says to hate them (and your siblings) and only love him. He didn't bring peace, but a sword, and that's the truth. So many innocent people have been killed over this religion, and it's various interpretations.

Please check out the Biblical Errancy website, and keep your thinking caps on. Does having faith mean sacrificing your rational faculties?

Respectfully,
DaryLLL is offline  
#22 of 60 Old 09-14-2002, 01:59 PM
 
Meiri's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Murrysville, PA
Posts: 8,869
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Whatever direction this thread takes next, I think an us vs them attitude is counterproductive. These religions are not in opposition to each other. To act as if they are is to cut off chances to learn from each other.

I asked a question because someone's statements made no sense To Me. If they make sense to That Person, that's fine with me.

I read what she had to say. I disagree, but that's what freedom of religion is all about. If I agreed with that perspective I'd be Christian of that denomination. If those posters agreed with my perspective they'd be practicing Celtic and Goddess religions.

The only thing I really object to that I've seen in this thread is the implication that if a person is not following a particular religion that they are by default following that religion's Devil. Ummm NO, that's a false dicotomy. There are Way more than the two options.

Believe whatever, but state the belief as Belief, not as Fact. Remember that not everyone defines the world the way you do--and I'll do the same.

"What will you do once you know?"
Meiri is offline  
#23 of 60 Old 09-14-2002, 02:00 PM
 
lilyka's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Sioux Falls, SD
Posts: 17,896
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
I certainly believe in the devil. Jesus himself was face to face with the devil in the wilderness and had to choose not to fall to his temptation. I believe he is responsible for temptation in the world. hier wasno sin or death untill satan butted in and told Eve she really did want the freaken forbiddin fruit and alas because of Satan putting those thoughts in her mind sin entered the hearts of people and now we have to struggle daily to fight it off.

Horns, hoves, pitchfork, and red suit. Who knows? Someones over active imagination or perhaps a tale from another religion where some bad guy looks like that. (not so far fetched when you consider people believe Jesus has fair skin and blue eyes : ) Anyway if satan was that obvious and hideous no one would have trouble resisting that so I would have to say IMHO he must blend a little better than that.

The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it.  We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.

lilyka is offline  
#24 of 60 Old 09-14-2002, 02:45 PM
 
DaryLLL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Under a Chimpocracy
Posts: 13,153
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Meiri--

I take your point and agree everyone has to come to god in his or her own way. Or just reject the idea of god(s) altogether.

But people can change. I did. I was raised a fundamentalist Lutheran, but as soon as my indoctrination was over (at confirmation) and I was freed to pursue my own truth, I began to find out, surprise! Christianity isn't the only religion in the world! The devil doesn't live in the Catholic church (as the kids would whisper). Anti-Semitism exists. Christianity isn't the world's most prevalent religion. Witches arent' green with warts. Buddhism is a kind and gentle religion. Hindus believe in maya. Joseph Campbell is a genius. The Wiccan godhead is both male and female. What we call Greek myth was actually a religion. Christianity shares archetypes with ancient Egyptian and Mithran religion. Etc.

I think many Christians are Christians b/c they know no other way. Not b/c they have really studied other religions. They may be afraid to, b/c their pastors tell them other religions are all of the devil (or myths), and not worth their time of day. And fundamentalists affect my life. They have lots of money, they are on school boards, they vote, they have TV shows, their pastors say a christian prayer at the opening of the Senate.

If Jehovah's Witnesses and others can proselytize, why can't those of other faiths sometimes educate others too? Now that there are so many immigrants coming into the country with their various faiths: Shinto, Hindu or Krishna Consciousness, Buddhist, Muslim, Haitian voodoo (sorry, voodoo isn't the real name), the religions of the peoples of Africa, (not to mention Native American beliefs which have really been stifled), isn't it time for some real religious tolerance? While id-ing as pagan, I feel free to borrow concepts from all religions. Yes, there is goodness and wisdom in the Bible, but it is not the only source of same. And IMO, it is chauvinistic to believe so.

If I seem angry, I guess I am. I was damaged and terrorized in my tender youth by the fear of God, the Devil and a lake of everlasting fire. I shivered in my little white sox. And God telling his follower to sacrifice his son really scared me too!

Not that I'm going to go door to door. I just assume people like to learn, and this is a pretty non-invasive way. they don't have to read this to the end.

but thanks if anyone did! Blessed be...
DaryLLL is offline  
#25 of 60 Old 09-14-2002, 03:24 PM
Banned
 
luvinlivin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: secure bunker
Posts: 204
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Just want to say THANK YOU to DaryLLL!!

I have learned more from your two posts here than I've learned in the last six months!

I, too, was scared to be alive b/c of my Xian upbringing and have enjoyed about 10 years of liberation from those chains of fear but have a long way to go before I am thankful for life as it truly is.

Please continue to post for those, like me, who find tremendous learning from your wisdom.

My empathies for your Luthern upbringing, scare tactics and all.

BB
luvinlivin is offline  
#26 of 60 Old 09-14-2002, 04:01 PM
 
Meiri's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Murrysville, PA
Posts: 8,869
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
DaryLLL, I agree with sharing and educating 100%.

I was just trying to defuse the potential oppositional feelings I was starting to see. I have to remember these things too.

I was raised Catholic, but our school took a field trip to the local synagogue and did Passover Seders. So, while it wasn't too far afield spiritually, I did grow up with a sense that there are other beliefs and that they are just as legit as my own.

I learned so much more in college and after! and continue to do so online and in books and in my own thinking things out for myself. and my thoughts in that last post weren't directed at you.

Quote:
If I seem angry, I guess I am. I was damaged and terrorized in my tender youth by the fear of God, the Devil and a lake of everlasting fire. I shivered in my little white sox. And God telling his follower to sacrifice his son really scared me too!
I hear you. I agree that fear is a poor basis for a faith and a poor teaching method. I hope you can get past this level to seeing the validity in all faiths as well. edited to add: I have the same hope for the Christians I've seen here and elsewhere and in RL expressing fear or distaste or disrespect(as in equating them with the Christian devil) for other religions.

A really good book for both sides of this artificial divide to read is Pagans & Christians by gus De Zerega.

When I was watching Frontline's Faith and Doubt at Ground Zero I was struck by much of what Rabbi Hirschfeld had to say. One of his points was that all religions have a shadow side and if that is not acknowledged then that shadow side will destroy that religion and the rest of us.

Now, Wicca (and Feminist Goddess religion) being young religions don't have the same traditions that support that shadowside that the Abrahamic faiths have, but the potential Is there. A few years ago Green Egg ran an article in which the author discussed her experience with a Wiccan couple who had a "chosen people" philosophy within their Wiccan beliefs. "How lucky we are to have been chosen by the Goddess." shudder

The exclusivist thinking is something we ALL have to watch out for. It's that attitude that leads to atrocities.

It's been my experience that Good people find the strength within themselves to do Good and find support for that from their particular religion. It's been equally my experience that bad people, or people who choose to do bad things, find support for their badness withing their religion. Someone else said it more succinctly, but I can't find the exact quote.

"What will you do once you know?"
Meiri is offline  
#27 of 60 Old 09-14-2002, 11:35 PM
 
SpiralWoman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: middle of the mid-south
Posts: 2,480
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
IMHO~

The devil: (As archetype: a not-specifically-christian-religious-figure): I think it is a pretty potent archetype. I could go on & on about that. As a member of a 12 step recovery group, I really *feel it* when someone shares about the disease of addiction as "the devil." It is like the devil card in tarot. It is an aglomeration (is that a word?) of fears & disempowerment. Is anyone getting what I'm saying, cause I'm not putting it that well. I think we can all feel the personality of the devil in our lives when we "give in" to something that our higher nature does not chose for us, when we act out of habit or resignation.

evil: (as philosophical? concept.) where do the horrors of life come from? why do we (humanity) do such things to ourselves & each other? does evil sit in all of us or in certain people? Is evil a natural force that must exist to balance goodness? yin/yang style? Or can evil be cordoned off & controlled, kept @ bay? no answers here folks, just questions. is it the uncertain terror evil brings us the force that drives us to "make sense" of it by creating a spirit being to blame for it?

Satan: (as theology, a religious figure in Christianity): I think an earlier post summarized the story of the much loved & talented angel who wanted to fly too high & be god himself. Moral of the story: be grateful for what you have, & don't be your own divinity, you will be the enemy & the villian if you do. Satan suffers the ultimate banishment for daring to say what pagans believe: I am God. Satan, like Eve, attempts to blow the lid off the scam & say, we are all beings of light, each & everyone.
off topic, but does anyone think this little dilemna is behind the antagonism between Christian & Pagan belief systems & the reason why paganism (ie: immanence, the divine is everywhere & in everything, including the self) is so villified by Christianity (ie: emmanence, the divine is held apart from all creation & seated in one unknowable being- that *is*not*you*)

thanks for another rockin spirituality discussion!
blessing, maria
SpiralWoman is offline  
#28 of 60 Old 09-15-2002, 12:40 AM
 
Meiri's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Murrysville, PA
Posts: 8,869
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Interesting questions Maria!

My first thought is that evil is needed in order for us to truly know what Good is, along the lines of the need for dark in order to know light. Each helps define the other. Frankly I think I could figure out Good with a whole lot less evil to stand in contrast, but I'm being trite now.


Quote:
Satan suffers the ultimate banishment for daring to say what pagans believe: I am God. Satan, like Eve, attempts to blow the lid off the scam & say, we are all beings of light, each & everyone.
????I've heard the phrase "Thou art God." but it is not meant to mean that the person so addressed is literally The God the way Christianity usually understands "God". It's a recognition of the spark of Divinity that resides in all people. I've read that the Hindu greeting Namaste means the same thing: "I recognize the Divine within you."

Quote:
off topic, but does anyone think this little dilemna is behind the antagonism between Christian & Pagan belief systems & the reason why paganism (ie: immanence, the divine is everywhere & in everything, including the self) is so villified by Christianity (ie: emmanence, the divine is held apart from all creation & seated in one unknowable being- that *is*not*you*)
There is a tradition/perspective within Christianity that also sees God/The Divine as being within all persons and all of Creation. I was in high school and college before being exposed to such concepts in the adult discussion groups at church, but immanense is not Only a Pagan concept.

There are also Pagans/Neo-Pagans who view the Divine as transcendent rather than immanent. That is a legit perspective within these groups along side the immanent view of Divinity.

Soooooo, while I can see how this is part of the antagonism, I think it's sad that we can't see past our own particular views to recognize what our traditions do hold in common, the things we can agree on.

To phrase it relevently for this website: Are we not all breastfeeding moms, supportive of breastfeeding, practicing various degrees of attachment parenting or at least being as loving of our children as possible?????

The Christian mommas here draw inspiration for parenting this way from their religious beliefs. The Pagan mommas here draw inspiration for parenting this way from their religious beliefs.

Now, both perspectives are leading to the same parenting style...

Why should we waste our time with antagonism????

"What will you do once you know?"
Meiri is offline  
#29 of 60 Old 09-15-2002, 02:19 AM
 
JessicaS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Posts: 42,897
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have read the other "lost" books of the Bible and it has had no impact on my faith. I have also looked into other religions and while I am aware and understand their beliefs yet I still chose Christianity. WHY??? Because of my love for Christ. Not any fear of burning fires or little red guys poking me with sticks. While I feel it is important to be educated about the Bible I do not feel that many of its opponents are very accurate in their assesments.

As for Lucifer, which is actually the topic of this thread, yes I do believe in the existance of satan.


Paul did have his good points, he made most of the anti-circ comments that are in the Bible and he was the first to allow women in evangelistic roles

As for the antagonism, well I really think a lot of that comes from the whole "I am right you are wrong" thing. Or even worse "I am righteous, you are going to hell" thing. Coming from the Bible belt it can get pretty bad. But the Bible speaks against fanatism and passing judgement.

I have quite a few friends who are pagan, and many of them were turned off of Christianity for that very thing. Very sad.

Not all those who wander are lost 
JessicaS is offline  
#30 of 60 Old 09-15-2002, 03:02 PM
 
DaryLLL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Under a Chimpocracy
Posts: 13,153
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks for your kind words, livinluvin.

For those who have investigated other religions and prefer Christianity anyway, perhaps you are a cafeteria christian? Take what you like and leave the rest? Fundies have to accept every word as coming directly from God, but liberals can take the nice stuff and ignore the rest.

Such as, when Lot's daughters got him drunk and raped him, b/c they just had to be pregnant and since they were hiding in a remote cave, couldn't get husbands. Of course they conceived and of course, with sons.

Such as, when God got mad at all humankind and drowned everybody in a flood, even all animals and plants. What did he have against those innocent animals and plants, just minding their own beeswax?

Such as when God ordered or caused the deaths of thousands of children, b/c they were the children of the enemies of the Jews. Not to mention the "taking of" their women. In other words, God approved of rape.

Such as when, in Genesis, the sons of the gods (yes, gods plural)mated with the daughters of men and started a race of giants on the earth. Hello?

Such as when Satan tempted Eve with the forbidden fruit in the Garden, telling her it would not kill her, and he was right? And God was wrong. Adam went on to live for hundreds of years. Of course, we don't know how long Eve lived, b/c, of course, women don't count in the Bible. If you think Adam died spiritually, not physically, that is not what God said would happen. He said Adam would die instantly.

Yes, we can take all these as charming myths with underlying spiritual meaning, not as literal truth. But then you go down a slippery slope, as Jesus himself seemed to believe in these (and/or other "myths") literally, and if he was God, he should know! His claim is he was directly descended from Adam, physically, and there are (well, flawed and contradictory) geneologies to prove it.

Did he really talk to a physical manifestation of Satan? Do liberal Christians believe that?

I like Wicca for many reasons, one important one being, there is no holy book. I have heard covens often write their own Books of Shadows, or journals of rituals and celebrations they have had. It is more personal, and seems healthy, like Oprah's journaling reccomendations.

When you have a religion with thousands of absolute pronouncements, and then the pronouncements contradict each other continually, it is a recipe for disaster. I couldn't live with that. In fact, I started pointing out contradictions to my pastor at the tender age of 12, and he got really mad, had no answer except blind acceptance, and threatened not to confirm me, if I continued to upset the catechism class!

Sheesh.
DaryLLL is offline  
Reply

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off