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Author Topic: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is  (Read 1859 times)

GiveWingstoHope

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Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« on: April 15, 2013, 01:13:01 pm »
My beliefs are pretty varied. Because of this, I find myself constantly struggling with exactly what my "faith" is.

I believe myself to be a Christian. Of the loose variety. It is meant to a religion of hope, love, and tolerance. Unfortunately, many of my fellow Christians aren't that way at all.
I have a deep connection to nature, and have strong ties to Magick. I am also a strong believer in the astral plane.

Is it wrong for me to believe in so many things? Do I need to be strictly devout to one or the other?
Does anyone else have this problem?.?
"Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle~"

Jack

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Re: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2013, 01:20:51 pm »
Quote from: GiveWingstoHope;105435
My beliefs are pretty varied. Because of this, I find myself constantly struggling with exactly what my "faith" is.

I believe myself to be a Christian. Of the loose variety. It is meant to a religion of hope, love, and tolerance. Unfortunately, many of my fellow Christians aren't that way at all.
I have a deep connection to nature, and have strong ties to Magick. I am also a strong believer in the astral plane.

Is it wrong for me to believe in so many things? Do I need to be strictly devout to one or the other?
Does anyone else have this problem?.?

 
I think you can certainly have strong ties to nature and be a Christian - "Green Christians" or "Christian Ecology" will turn up lots of people who feel similarly to you.

Magic is a thornier question - it depends on your branch of Christianity. Lots of people will tell you you can't. But ultimately it's between you and your gods whether you're okay or not. If Yahweh and Jesus say you're good, then I'd take their word for it.

So... what do you think? What do the respected theologians of your denomination think?
Hail Mara, Lady of Good Things!
"The only way to cope with something deadly serious is to try to treat it a little lightly." -Madeleine L'Engle

GiveWingstoHope

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Re: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2013, 01:29:44 pm »
Quote from: Jack;105436
I think you can certainly have strong ties to nature and be a Christian - "Green Christians" or "Christian Ecology" will turn up lots of people who feel similarly to you.

Magic is a thornier question - it depends on your branch of Christianity. Lots of people will tell you you can't. But ultimately it's between you and your gods whether you're okay or not. If Yahweh and Jesus say you're good, then I'd take their word for it.

So... what do you think? What do the respected theologians of your denomination think?

Unfortunately, I don't practice with other people. Most churches bother me, and I don't have a denomination. I am just Christian.
I don't find God in a church but rather in nature, and so many people who go to them seem to think going to church makes you a Christian. I wonder if they believe sitting in a garage will make them a car? I wouldn't doubt it. Even though that's horrible to say..

Personally? I believe that if God created Earth, than he also would have created Magick. You can feel the energy of life pulsing around you, especially in a place more or less untouched by humanity. That there are beings that wonder who may have wandered in from another plane. (There's some really interesting theories about the color spectrum and "invisibility" for creatures who have colors the human eye isn't capable of seeing)

What does Christianity say? To worship only the one God as your creator, and more or less treat others as you would be treated.
I would assume that leaves room for things like Magick and the astral plane, but because most Christians forget that Jesus taught tolerance and understanding, many would adamantly disagree.
I don't think I honestly know many other people who view it as I do.
And sometimes I wonder if I should even bother trying to put a label on it...?

May I ask what a virtual adept and Cartesian planeswalker is?.?
« Last Edit: April 15, 2013, 01:30:44 pm by GiveWingstoHope »
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Jack

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Re: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2013, 01:54:09 pm »
Quote from: GiveWingstoHope;105442
Unfortunately, I don't practice with other people. Most churches bother me, and I don't have a denomination. I am just Christian.


Well, that complicates things, since saying you're of a denomination makes it a lot easier to know what you believe. Is there a denomination you feel is close to what you believe?

Quote
Personally? I believe that if God created Earth, than he also would have created Magick. You can feel the energy of life pulsing around you, especially in a place more or less untouched by humanity.


I feel more life in a busy city, personally, but I think that's a matter of what wavelengths you're tuned into.

Quote
That there are beings that wonder who may have wandered in from another plane. (There's some really interesting theories about the color spectrum and "invisibility" for creatures who have colors the human eye isn't capable of seeing)


Do you mean they're... what, ultraviolet colored? I'm not sure what you're referring to here. Can you recommend a link or two where I can read about it?

Quote
What does Christianity say? To worship only the one God as your creator, and more or less treat others as you would be treated.


In fairness, it says a lot more things than that.

Quote
I would assume that leaves room for things like Magick and the astral plane, but because most Christians forget that Jesus taught tolerance and understanding, many would adamantly disagree.


How do you feel about Exodus 22:18? Deuteronomy 18:11? Which Biblical translation do you prefer?

Quote
May I ask what a virtual adept and Cartesian planeswalker is?.?


A virtual adept is a mage who approaches magic from a mathematical view of the cosmos, generally favoring correspondence spheres.

A Cartesian planeswalker is a level 10+ metaphysician who decided to specialize in journeying via geometric astral planes.
Hail Mara, Lady of Good Things!
"The only way to cope with something deadly serious is to try to treat it a little lightly." -Madeleine L'Engle

mlr52

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Re: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2013, 08:22:32 pm »
Quote from: GiveWingstoHope;105435
My beliefs are pretty varied. Because of this, I find myself constantly struggling with exactly what my "faith" is.

I believe myself to be a Christian. Of the loose variety. It is meant to a religion of hope, love, and tolerance. Unfortunately, many of my fellow Christians aren't that way at all.
I have a deep connection to nature, and have strong ties to Magick. I am also a strong believer in the astral plane.

Is it wrong for me to believe in so many things? Do I need to be strictly devout to one or the other?
Does anyone else have this problem?.?


I believe that each person is responsible for their faith. Questions to consider, without posting answers.
If you define your faith, will you be stuck with that definition, and unable to change it?
If you define your faith will it be defined for others, or yourself?
If you define your faith will others be attracted to it, and or required to accept it?
Light Your Candle, In Love and Service, Blessed Be.
I am a Notary Public for The State of New York, - I do not charge for Notary Fee\'s, I Live in Brooklyn, N.Y.

Snowdrop

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Re: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2013, 08:36:12 pm »
Quote from: GiveWingstoHope;105435
My beliefs are pretty varied. Because of this, I find myself constantly struggling with exactly what my "faith" is.

I believe myself to be a Christian. Of the loose variety. It is meant to a religion of hope, love, and tolerance. Unfortunately, many of my fellow Christians aren't that way at all.
I have a deep connection to nature, and have strong ties to Magick. I am also a strong believer in the astral plane.

Is it wrong for me to believe in so many things? Do I need to be strictly devout to one or the other?
Does anyone else have this problem?.?

 
Definitely I see no reason why you shouldn't revere nature as a Christian.  After all, it's God's beloved creation, right?

MadZealot

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Re: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2013, 08:59:32 pm »
Quote from: GiveWingstoHope;105435
My beliefs are pretty varied.


You're definitely not alone.  It's perfectly acceptable to love Christ and respect Nature.  I do both and see no conflict.
Superman is uncircumcised. Change my mind.

Ravaris

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Re: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« Reply #7 on: April 21, 2013, 02:39:10 pm »
Quote from: GiveWingstoHope;105435
My beliefs are pretty varied. Because of this, I find myself constantly struggling with exactly what my "faith" is.

I believe myself to be a Christian. Of the loose variety. It is meant to a religion of hope, love, and tolerance. Unfortunately, many of my fellow Christians aren't that way at all.
I have a deep connection to nature, and have strong ties to Magick. I am also a strong believer in the astral plane.

Is it wrong for me to believe in so many things? Do I need to be strictly devout to one or the other?
Does anyone else have this problem?.?


I'm Christian myself and have had some interesting moments of insight; though what I'm going to tell you is my opinion and while it might help you I would recommend meditating on it yourself.

While I don't practice Magic I do use energy work for healing work and energy defense. I feel that this was a gift given to me by God and as I understand it it is a sin to squander a gift from God. Now I know a lot of people feel that it is a sin to use magic other then prayer I feel that such things are given to use for a reason. And while it is possible to misuse this gift it is just as likely that we could misuse another of our talents that doesn't relate to magic or the paranormal. All that can be done in that case is to ask for forgiveness.

At the end of the day you should read the Bible and decide if you think it's OK to use magic and then figure out how to do it in a way that God would find pleasing. But that's just what I think. I hope you find clarity.
« Last Edit: April 21, 2013, 02:40:29 pm by Ravaris »

Jake57

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Re: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« Reply #8 on: July 02, 2013, 01:42:45 pm »
Quote from: Ravaris;106287
At the end of the day you should read the Bible and decide if you think it's OK to use magic and then figure out how to do it in a way that God would find pleasing. But that's just what I think. I hope you find clarity.


How interesting that I found this thread, as I was thinking of starting a new one.  I am a very liberal Catholic (convert) that has always been pagan/wiccan friendly.  I am also an astrologer and believe I am sensitive to energies and forces that I believe naturally exist in the universe.  I really don't know how to bring all of my beliefs together, or even if they actually DO need to be brought together.  No questions here, I guess, just a desire to say I know how it feels to be in more than one world, spiritually speaking.

Louisvillian

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Re: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« Reply #9 on: July 04, 2013, 06:18:50 am »
Quote from: GiveWingstoHope;105442
I don't find God in a church but rather in nature

Then you're quite in tune with some prominent Christians, like St. Francis of Assisi. His views were very nature-oriented, arguably pagan, but nonetheless with structured in a Christian paradigm. He saw God as present in nature, as immanent in the world.

Quote
Personally? I believe that if God created Earth, than he also would have created Magic

That is kinda the view taken by Christian mystics and occultists. One must keep in mind that a lot of the high-magic traditions adopted by the Neopagan movement and the Western occult tradition in general are strongly rooted in Jewish and Christian esoteric thought and practice. Renaissance occultism had a heavy presence of theurgy and other magic--but saw it as divine in origin, rather than diabolic.

Long story short: there's a sizeable precedent of Christians having somewhat pagan outlooks, and a sizeable precedent of Christians practising magic. It just depends on your point of view.

Naomi J

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Re: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« Reply #10 on: July 04, 2013, 06:48:21 am »
Quote from: Louisvillian;114516
Then you're quite in tune with some prominent Christians, like St. Francis of Assisi. His views were very nature-oriented, arguably pagan, but nonetheless with structured in a Christian paradigm. He saw God as present in nature, as immanent in the world.


Not to mention the Celtic Christians, who were (essentially) pre-Catholic, and retained at least some of their 'pagan' deep relationship to the land around them. There has been an over-romanticisation of their beliefs by recent revivalists, but they do seem to have had a strong connection to nature. A poem attributed to St Columba is a good example of this connection. The Wish of Manchán of Liath is later (10th century), but has much of the same Celtic Christian themes.
"We're all stories, in the end. Make it a good one, eh?"
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Louisvillian

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Re: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« Reply #11 on: July 06, 2013, 07:11:14 am »
Quote from: Naomi J;114518
Not to mention the Celtic Christians, who were (essentially) pre-Catholic, and retained at least some of their 'pagan' deep relationship to the land around them.

I find their approach interesting. They went with the Christian duty to convert others, but they did by not being assholes. They did so through setting a good example and demonstrating to others what Christianity did for them as individuals and as a community. It's refreshing to see that there is a respectful way to proselytise.

EclecticWheel

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Re: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« Reply #12 on: July 19, 2013, 06:13:08 pm »
Quote from: GiveWingstoHope;105435
My beliefs are pretty varied. Because of this, I find myself constantly struggling with exactly what my "faith" is.

I believe myself to be a Christian. Of the loose variety. It is meant to a religion of hope, love, and tolerance. Unfortunately, many of my fellow Christians aren't that way at all.
I have a deep connection to nature, and have strong ties to Magick. I am also a strong believer in the astral plane.

Is it wrong for me to believe in so many things? Do I need to be strictly devout to one or the other?
Does anyone else have this problem?.?

 
You are right, not all professing Christians are kind, although I think this is a problem with people of any religion or none.  I try to practice my faith as best as I can.  My faith doesn't focus on how others behave, but how I do.

As for whether you can be a Christian and believe these things, it really comes down to interpretation, especially since you are not committed to a particular denomination that would bind you by certain doctrines.

I see that Exodus 22:18 and Deuteronomy 18:11 were mentioned in this thread.  I'd do some research on the actual translation of the word "witch" in Exodus -- there is plenty on this if you google it.  Also one should remember that these scriptures are commandments that bind people who are Jewish.  Gentiles are not bound by these laws, they specifically bind people who are a part of the Jewish covenant.

If you read the Torah, there is actually a fair amount of divination and magic that was practiced by some important people in the Hebrew Bible.  Joseph himself practiced divination.  In Genesis 30 Jacob, who worked for Laman for many years used a form of magic, known to be a part of existing paleopagan religions at the time, to accumulate cattle while he was being taken disadvantage of by Laman.

There are many other such examples in the Torah.

One should remember that Christianity, like all religions, has constantly changed throughout its history.  It started out as a Jewish sect before it became a separate religion.  I can't help feeling but that the Christianity of this time could have been considered a different religion than what became Christianity by the time of the Council of Nicea.  In the second century various Christian sects emerged, many of them polytheistic and syncretic.  (These are referred to as "Gnostics," though I don't think that's a great term for these diverse groups.)  Christianity experienced schisms in the East hundreds of years before the Protestant Reformation, schisms that endure to this day.  Protestantism, even in its Anglican form which I adhere to, is very innovative and introduced many ideas unknown to Christianity before.

Considering this history, I think you pray, do good works, and wait on God to lead you in your faith.  Whatever your interpretation is of Christianity, it wouldn't be much more innovative than say, the Baptist denomination, certainly not more so than those we call "Gnostics."
My personal moral code:

Love wisely, and do what thou wilt.

EclecticWheel

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Re: Undertanding Exactly What Your Faith Is
« Reply #13 on: July 19, 2013, 06:20:55 pm »
Quote from: Louisvillian;114516
Then you're quite in tune with some prominent Christians, like St. Francis of Assisi. His views were very nature-oriented, arguably pagan, but nonetheless with structured in a Christian paradigm. He saw God as present in nature, as immanent in the world.

 
I'm glad St. Francis of Assisi came up in this thread.  He is one of my favorite saints.  There is a statue of him on the grounds of my church.

I pray his Canticle of Brother Sun and Sister Moon in one of my rites:

Most High, all-powerful, all-good Lord, All praise is Yours, all glory, all honour and all blessings.

 To you alone, Most High, do they belong, and no mortal lips are worthy to pronounce Your Name.

 Praised be You my Lord with all Your creatures,
 especially Sir Brother Sun,
 Who is the day through whom You give us light.
 And he is beautiful and radiant with great splendour,
 Of You Most High, he bears the likeness.

 Praised be You, my Lord, through Sister Moon and the stars,
 In the heavens you have made them bright, precious and fair.

 Praised be You, my Lord, through Brothers Wind and Air,
 And fair and stormy, all weather's moods,
 by which You cherish all that You have made.

 Praised be You my Lord through Sister Water,
 So useful, humble, precious and pure.

 Praised be You my Lord through Brother Fire,
 through whom You light the night and he is beautiful and playful and robust and strong.

 Praised be You my Lord through our Sister,
 Mother Earth
 who sustains and governs us,
 producing varied fruits with coloured flowers and herbs.
 Praise be You my Lord through those who grant pardon for love of You and bear sickness and trial.

 Blessed are those who endure in peace, By You Most High, they will be crowned.

 Praised be You, my Lord through Sister Death,
 from whom no-one living can escape. Woe to those who die in mortal sin! Blessed are they She finds doing Your Will.

 No second death can do them harm. Praise and bless my Lord and give Him thanks,
 And serve Him with great humility.
My personal moral code:

Love wisely, and do what thou wilt.

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