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 Post subject: Re: Paganism
PostPosted: 15 Sep 2008, 10:15 
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Garrett wrote:
jess wrote:
Quote:
2 a (2): the body of real things, events, and facts : actuality (3)often capitalized : a transcendent fundamental or spiritual reality

So, Truth. Not right, but real.

So Truth is not the universe itself (it is not the body of real things), but instead is a "transcendent fundamental" reality. Really, though, besides the body of real things, events, and facts : actuality (iow the objective physical world), the only other thing I know exists is the subjective mental world.

So from my perspective the capital T Truth must refer to some sort of mind.


Not necessarily ... it might refer to a conceptual and/or allegorical representation of the rules/ laws of the physical world and the workings of humanity within them. A way for humans to 'grasp' the big picture that guys like Einstein can conceptualize in mathematical means ...

Garrett wrote:
jess wrote:
It's not like I believe in the literal word of the story, that it is an eyewitness account (unlike some Christians who seem to waffle between what is true and what is parable/story), although I won't say that it's impossible that these things (some of them) aren't literal, or at least based in some fact/historical event.

On some level, the 'fact' is less important than the truth. Or at least less telling.

I guess, it wasn't some myth or legend that made it click for me--- it was the sudden realization that these myths and legends are true that made it click.

When you say they are true you mean... they point towards the capital T Truth, which means... well, that the legends give you insight into the mind or reality of god/the spiritual reality?


Again, the god/ spiritual reality could just be a 'front' for the physical phenomena - a GUI for the universe's mechanisms, and the stories are akin to a user's manual, if you like ...

Garrett wrote:
jess wrote:
Not true as in 'right' or 'words to live by' but true as in they answer a need.

I can't say what I need to. I'll sleep on it...

That sounds a lot like what I recently heard: the symbols and rituals fill an emotional psychological need, they don't really answer to the rational portions of the brain, so to speak.

I'm interested in learning more about your use of the myths and legends to answer a need to understand the transcendent fundamental or spiritual reality. I think there's something here I should know.


And, while symbols and rituals don't need to -answer- to the rational portions of the brain, they might -satisfy- it.

That might be part of it ... The satisfaction that the answer you've got fills the gaps?


Or so I think ... :cheeky:

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If you can't stand the heat, don't tickle the dragon ...


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 Post subject: Re: Paganism
PostPosted: 23 Jun 2010, 03:33 
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Paganism – What is It?
Paganism has been broadly defined as anyone involved in any religious act, practice, or ceremony which is not Christian. Jews and Muslims also use the term to refer to anyone outside their religion. Others define it as religions outside of Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, and Buddhism, while some simply define it as being without a religion.

In the strictest sense, paganism refers to the authentic religions of ancient Greece and Rome as well as surrounding areas. It originated from the Neolithic (Stone Age) era. The term, pagan, is derived from the Latin word, paganus, which means a country dweller. The pagan usually has a belief in many gods (polytheistic), but only one is chosen as the one to worship which represents the chief god and supreme godhead.

As Christianity progressed into the present age, a pagan became referred to anyone not being a Christian, and paganism denoted a non-Christian belief or religion. If the religion did not fit into the Judeo-Christian-Islamic or Eastern mould, then one practicing that religion was said to be involved in paganism.

Paganism – What is the history?
History records that worship of many gods, goddesses, and deities was viewed by people as important in worship. It was thought that everything had a spirit and was polytheistic, so people had gods and goddesses of the forest, sea, and all aspects of nature.

When the civilizations began to change and develop, the gods grew and changed with the people as they began to acquire gods of their occupations, or gods relevant to their village life. The old gods remained, but were changed or conformed to the changing lives of the people. Gods played an important role in every aspect of society influencing everything from laws and customs to general workings of the community. Reincarnation (rebirth of the body into another bodily form) was believed by the people, but they did not believe in the existence of heaven and hell.

Today, Paganism (neo-paganism) celebrates the Earth, living creatures, nature, and so on. Most modern-day pagans believe in more than one god, while others are atheistic.

Paganism – What are some pagan systems and religions?

* American pagans practice a variety of forms of traditions, but the most popular are Celtic, Greco-Roman, Native American, ancient Egyptian, and Norse.
* Kabbalah: During the Middle Ages, this Jewish mystical and magical system developed.
* Shamanism: This tradition is practiced by the Native American cultures. Drumming is the technique used, and in traditional societies, the shaman travels to the spirit realm to gain information regarding the community’s needs like healing or spiritual growth.
* Egyptian: This is very popular today, and involves complex spiritual and magical systems centering on death and rebirth. It developed in ancient Egypt when priestesses and priests became known for their level of knowledge and skill in magical arts.
* Druidism: The original Druids were priestesses and part of the judicial class of the ancient Celts.
* Discordianism: This began as a Buddhist practice with the main idea being “existence is orderly chaos.” Meditative procedures, confusion and enlightenment, chaos and order, pain and pleasure are revealed as inseparable parts of a total vision of reality.

Paganism – How does it compare with Christianity?
It is difficult to compare paganism with Christianity since the term pagan can be used to identify many different sects and beliefs.

These are the major differences, out of many:

* Biblical Christianity professes one God, where paganism often teaches many or no god.

* Biblical Christianity teaches that the Bible contains God’s words and message to mankind. It is infallible and inerrant. Paganism does not have one main religious text or set of beliefs to follow.

* Biblical Christianity teaches that Jesus, God’s Son, came to earth as a baby, died on the cross as an adult for the sin of the whole world, and rose to life again. Some pagans believe in Jesus as one of the gods, but do not put significance in Him as Christians do.

Due to these differences and many more, a person cannot be a follower of Jesus Christ (a Christian) and a pagan at the same time.

“Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles. Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another”


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 Post subject: Re: Paganism
PostPosted: 23 Jun 2010, 04:47 
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Just to add to the above Shamanism in Africa/South America and druidism are forms animism, where spirits are said to be possessed not just by humans but animals, trees and plants and even rocks or geological features. In the Massai tradition they worship only one entity or God and are monotheistic, but certain places such as Mt Kilmanjairo and other geological features are considered an entity in an of itself or areas of great spiritual significance. Vodon/Voodoo was founded in Africa and mixed with Catholicism in The West indies and this is probably the most well known of their religions as well as the shamanic traditions it has beliefs in Anansi a spider God and trickster who is a source of many stories which have a deeper message much like Aesops fables, and several other animal derived entities. However the religions of Africa are fairly diverse and differ from place to place and it would be impossible to describe even a half of them adequately.

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To meet you
May the wind be always
At your back
May the sun shine warm
upon your face
May the rain fall soft
upon your field,
And until we meet again.
May God hold you in the palm of his hand.


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 Post subject: Re: Paganism
PostPosted: 23 Jun 2010, 06:51 
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The Dagda wrote:
In the Massai tradition they worship only one entity or God and are monotheistic, but certain places such as Mt Kilmanjairo and other geological features are considered an entity in an of itself or areas of great spiritual significance.



I know most people consider those who live in Appalachia and the mountains in general pretty odd and some of that is they hold that kind of regard for the landscape that you mention here. I don't know if they are just used to the environment having been raised there or choose it due to spiritual inclination. Most people around here though Christian are very superstitious and talk about the hills/ river in a certain way. They wouldn't say there are spirits in them but they are definitly part of the culture even here.


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