collapse

Author Topic: Culture/Worldview and Deities  (Read 10848 times)

Darkhawk

  • Senior Staff
  • *
  • Join Date: Jun 2011
  • Posts: 4803
  • Country: us
  • Total likes: 682
    • View Profile
    • Suns in her Branches
  • Religion: An American Werewolf in the Akhet; Kemetic; Feri; Imaginary Baltic Heathen; Discordian; CoX; Etc.
  • Preferred Pronouns: any of he, she, they
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #15 on: July 26, 2011, 07:36:09 pm »
Quote from: hlewagastir;8497

It is a fact that people in the western world is under the effect of a Christian worldview. I´m not saying it is a bad thing, not at all.
Also, both the Jewish worldview and the Muslim worldview share some of their core concepts and ideas with Christianity.


Not as many as you might think.  Most of the Jewish folks I know strenuously object to claims of "Judeo-Christian values" and the like, because in practice that means "a particular form of Christian values but we're pretending that includes Jews because of the Holocaust".

Quote

Concepts and ideas which were not necessarily shared by the various peoples of pre-Christian Europe; so, when I and others are trying to understand the worldview and culture our religion stems from - and try to apply it to our understanding of the world - are we doing anything offensive to other religions?

 
This thread was not started about religions, it was started about entities.  Conflating them is unproductive.

Treating any framework that is not reconstructionist as Christian, whether or not that is actually the case, is pretty damned offensive.
as the water grinds the stone
we rise and fall
as our ashes turn to dust
we shine like stars    - Covenant, "Bullet"

Juniperberry

  • Grand Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Banned!
  • Posts: 1891
  • Total likes: 3
    • View Profile
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #16 on: July 26, 2011, 08:27:08 pm »
Quote from: Darkhawk;8498
Not as many as you might think.  Most of the Jewish folks I know strenuously object to claims of "Judeo-Christian values" and the like, because in practice that means "a particular form of Christian values but we're pretending that includes Jews because of the Holocaust".


 
This thread was not started about religions, it was started about entities.  Conflating them is unproductive.

Treating any framework that is not reconstructionist as Christian, whether or not that is actually the case, is pretty damned offensive.


Interestingly enough, parents do often hide their children from me because I've been known to compare two separate worldviews on a forum. Hmmm.
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

hlewagastir

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Posts: 205
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #17 on: July 26, 2011, 08:36:34 pm »
Quote from: Darkhawk;8498
Not as many as you might think.  Most of the Jewish folks I know strenuously object to claims of "Judeo-Christian values" and the like, because in practice that means "a particular form of Christian values but we're pretending that includes Jews because of the Holocaust".

 
Worldview is much more basic than a few values. It´s a basic, cosmological understanding of how the world is ordered and functions.

There are several values, concepts and ideas where North European pre-Christian Heathenry (to give an example) differs from Christianity - and in many instances also from Islam and Judaism.
To name a few:
Dualism, that "Heaven" is up in heaven, that there are (divine) rewards and/or punishments after death, universal charity/love towards fellow man (agapê/caritas).

A concept like dualism is completely integrated in the western worldview, among both Christians, culture-Christians and neopagans alike.


Quote
This thread was not started about religions, it was started about entities. Conflating them is unproductive.

Treating any framework that is not reconstructionist as Christian, whether or not that is actually the case, is pretty damned offensive.


You were the one who started talking about "offending" other "religions".
Besides, you can write "gods" or "deities" everytime I have written "religion" and the point hardly changes.

If something is actually the case I´ll treat it accordingly... And I´m not treating it as Christian per se but just as under the influence of a Christian (or Western, if you preferre) worldview.

Darkhawk

  • Senior Staff
  • *
  • Join Date: Jun 2011
  • Posts: 4803
  • Country: us
  • Total likes: 682
    • View Profile
    • Suns in her Branches
  • Religion: An American Werewolf in the Akhet; Kemetic; Feri; Imaginary Baltic Heathen; Discordian; CoX; Etc.
  • Preferred Pronouns: any of he, she, they
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #18 on: July 26, 2011, 08:43:32 pm »
Quote from: hlewagastir;8512

You were the one who started talking about "offending" other "religions".


Nope.  I called offensive bullshit spewed about religions what it was.  Religions cannot be offended.
as the water grinds the stone
we rise and fall
as our ashes turn to dust
we shine like stars    - Covenant, "Bullet"

Juni

  • Grand Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jun 2011
  • Posts: 1683
  • Total likes: 2
    • View Profile
    • http://thelittleseawitch.net
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #19 on: July 26, 2011, 08:45:56 pm »
Quote from: hlewagastir;8512
Worldview is much more basic than a few values. It´s a basic, cosmological understanding of how the world is ordered and functions.


Gee, I had no idea.

Quote from: hlewagastir;8512
A concept like dualism is completely integrated in the western worldview, among both Christians, culture-Christians and neopagans alike.


I think 'completely' is a large exaggeration. I, for one, do not and have never functioned with a dualistic worldview, and I have been raised in a thoroughly Western culture. Just because it may be prominent does not make it an automatic default setting.

Quote from: hlewagastir;8512
of a Christian (or Western, if you preferre) worldview.

 
These are not interchangeable terms.
Join the Emboatening Crew over on Kiva! Emboatening the boatless since Opet 2013!

The Little Sea Witch - personal/catch-all blog
MistSeeking - religious blog

stephyjh

  • Grand Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Posts: 1597
  • Total likes: 2
    • View Profile
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #20 on: July 26, 2011, 10:53:51 pm »
Quote from: Juniperberry;8475
How did I offend Christianity??

I went with the majority religious worldview in western culture that most of us operate under. Next time I'll be sure to list off all 901 religions in existence on the off-chance that the Wisconsin rock worshippers might feel excluded.

I'm curious, do you understand the difference between what offends you personally and what's truly offensive?
Ut

 
I'm curious, do you understand that that which offends people is, by definition, offensive?
A heretic blast has been blown in the west,
That what is no sense must be nonsense.

-Robert Burns

MysticRayne

  • Sr. Newbie
  • **
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Posts: 13
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #21 on: July 27, 2011, 12:29:11 am »
Quote from: Jenett;8460
I think that original culture matters to deity work about as much as knowing where someone grew up matters to having a relationship with them as an adult.

In other words, it obviously has an effect, and the closer you are to someone, the more useful it is to know what cultural background they bring, and how they might react to certain things, and so on.

But it's also quite possible to have a very good working relationship with someone whose culture isn't familiar to you, if you negotiate the individual interactions thoughtfully, or are working in a shared culture that everyone agrees on. (In terms of things like "How do I express respect for you, and show when I'm listening" and "What kind of things do you like to get as presents/tokens of esteem" and "How formal are we going to be with each other.")
 
Knowing the initial cultures gives you a really good start on that negotiation. But it's not the only way to sort things out.


This. ^  Well said and I agree.
"Sometimes you need the rain in order to appreciate the sun." - Me

treekisser

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Posts: 152
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #22 on: July 27, 2011, 12:35:40 am »
Quote from: Jenett;8460
I think that original culture matters to deity work about as much as knowing where someone grew up matters to having a relationship with them as an adult.

Very much all of this. I'd add that personally, I've always been impressed when people I meet in England show at least an awareness that my cultural background could be different.

Well obviously I'm not a deity - working on it :p - but as someone who's recently promised Thoth that I'd swot up on him I also think that wholly understanding the culture/worldview isn't necessary, offering to do so is a sign of respect.
« Last Edit: July 27, 2011, 12:36:09 am by treekisser »

Juniperberry

  • Grand Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Banned!
  • Posts: 1891
  • Total likes: 3
    • View Profile
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #23 on: July 27, 2011, 01:04:58 am »
Quote from: stephyjh;8549
I'm curious, do you understand that that which offends people is, by definition, offensive?

 
Do you understand that Darkhawk claimed I was offensive to a majority and not to him personally? Let me break it down for you.


God what did I even say that started all this... Oh, "you're basically just a polytheistic Christian". Which Darkhawk claimed was offensive to Christianity because I used Christianity as the 'default' religion for Americans when providing an example. (Or something, I still don't really get it what the problem is.)

Did I truly offend Christianity by using it as the 'default' religion of America? Since 78% of the country is Christian, I doubt it. statistics. It isn't an overall offensive statement because it reflects the social 'norm', or accepted fact.

Was Darkhawk offended that I chose to use the majority religion instead of choosing to highlight several religious profiles? Yes. It was personally offending. Did I offend the socially accepted opinion by using Christianity as a prevelant worldview in America's religious landscape that one has to overcome? No, because it is the socially accepted opinion that Christianity is widely known and practiced.

Darkhawk being personally offended does not make it an offensive comment.
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

Morag

  • Staff
  • *
  • Join Date: Jun 2011
  • Location: deep in the woods
  • Posts: 2354
  • Country: ca
  • Total likes: 97
  • cranky witch
    • View Profile
    • Everyday Magic
  • Religion: ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
  • Preferred Pronouns: zie/zir or they/them
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #24 on: July 27, 2011, 03:05:01 am »
Quote from: Juniperberry;8442
Without understanding or adjusting your religious worldview, you're basically just a polytheistic Christian.

 
Except that I was raised Buddhist, so when I don't adjust my worldview I'm a polytheistic Buddhist.

Which is not Christian.
Pray drunk. Hex sober.
Everyday Magic | Morag's Spindle
"The most powerful god at any given moment is the one who can solve the moment's problem."
-Darkhawk

EJay

  • Master Member
  • ******
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Banned!
  • Posts: 269
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #25 on: July 27, 2011, 03:41:31 am »
Quote from: Jenett;8460
I think that original culture matters to deity work about as much as knowing where someone grew up matters to having a relationship with them as an adult.

In other words, it obviously has an effect, and the closer you are to someone, the more useful it is to know what cultural background they bring, and how they might react to certain things, and so on.

But it's also quite possible to have a very good working relationship with someone whose culture isn't familiar to you, if you negotiate the individual interactions thoughtfully, or are working in a shared culture that everyone agrees on. (In terms of things like "How do I express respect for you, and show when I'm listening" and "What kind of things do you like to get as presents/tokens of esteem" and "How formal are we going to be with each other.")
 
Knowing the initial cultures gives you a really good start on that negotiation. But it's not the only way to sort things out.

 
Yup, yup, and yup.  Just throwing in more kudos for your post.  Well said!

Best~
EJay
If you understand, things are just as they are.  If you do not understand, things are just as they are.

EJay

  • Master Member
  • ******
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Banned!
  • Posts: 269
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #26 on: July 27, 2011, 04:26:00 am »
Quote from: monsnoleedra;8452
Think of being in Hawaii and feeling the volcano rumble and the magma shoot forth into the night sky and you know Pele.  You smell her, see her, sense her, taste her and understand how the land responds to her.  Yet move to any where else and its just a volcano erupting for it is not Pele.  Vulcan perhaps but that is a different feeling and sensation.


'kay.  Kilauea may be her front door, but Pele has many egresses from her home and many kinolau (other bodies).  Trust me.  Madam Pele is not confined to Hawai'i.  And why would you assume that anywhere else is "just" a volcano or a result of Vulcan and not Pele?  I don't think that all volcanoes are Pele's kinolau, but I'm tellin' ya, Pele is not a prisoner on the islands.

Quote from: monsnoleedra;8452
You can't in my opinon trully know a god / goddess and thier relationship with thier land, thier people and everything else if you haven't been there.  Then if you don't know how the people felt, saw, understood and believed you don't know anything really, you just assume.

Some things I believe are carried in the blood.  One side of my ancestry from the Isle's of Lewis in the Hebridies.  Images and stories from my youth confirmed when I went to the Highlands, when I looked out over the waters, smelled the air and felt the breezes.  Even notions of gods / goddesses and suddenly came alive before my eyes.  Yet no matter how hard I tried I could not convey the sensation and feelings to the rest of my family who only had the stories.


I think what bothers me about this is you're defining and limiting the gods into the culture with which they're most recognized and associated.

They (the god/desses) are what they are--they're not man-made.  We create stories to try to understand who/what they are, but that does not define them.

Going back to Madam Pele, she was in Hawai'i long before the Tahitians found the islands, long before the Menehune found the islands.  Hawai'ian cultures have told or created stories about Pele in order to understand her, but she is not the stories we create.  These stories help us in our relationship with her, but it's a HUGE folly to think that she is what we say she is.  She'll tell you who she is, in no uncertain terms.

To quote myself, I think it's a "HUGE folly" to think that the gods fall into our limitations of them.  The cultures that revered certain gods got to know them and had their stories and experiences and those stories are a great insight into the deities.

However, cultures change.  The gods may or may not, each according to their kind.  But they are what they are, not how we define them.

Best~
EJay
If you understand, things are just as they are.  If you do not understand, things are just as they are.

hlewagastir

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Posts: 205
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #27 on: July 27, 2011, 05:31:55 am »
Quote from: Darkhawk;8513
Nope.  I called offensive bullshit spewed about religions what it was.  Religions cannot be offended.

Except, you weren´t calling any bullshit, you acted snarky when you read Juniperberry´s post as deliberately offensive instead of just a generalisation based on one of the most widespread worldviews in the Western world.

There are better and more productive ways to handle disagreements.


Quote from: Juni;8516
I think 'completely' is a large exaggeration. I, for one, do not and have never functioned with a dualistic worldview, and I have been raised in a thoroughly Western culture. Just because it may be prominent does not make it an automatic default setting.


Might be, but where I come from around 80 % do have a dualisitc worldview. Even some of the atheists I have talked with have manedged to incorporate it.
A huge number of the Asatru and Heathens I know of or have spoken with have carried the dualism of the soul and body with them from Christian/Western culture.

And because it is prominent I´ll use it as an example, there will always be peoples and communities that differ from the majority.

Quote
These are not interchangeable terms.

You´re probably correct, however, the prominent western worldview is influenced by Christianity (heavily).
« Last Edit: July 27, 2011, 05:35:51 am by hlewagastir »

Juniperberry

  • Grand Master Member
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Banned!
  • Posts: 1891
  • Total likes: 3
    • View Profile
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #28 on: July 27, 2011, 05:41:35 am »
Quote from: Morag;8588
Except that I was raised Buddhist, so when I don't adjust my worldview I'm a polytheistic Buddhist.

Which is not Christian.

 
Thank you for being able to accept an example and apply it to your own personal life-story in a way that has relevence for you. :)

If I had had more experience as a Muslim in my life that would have been the 'default' example that I used as I expressed MY opinion on how cultures and worldviews had been adjusted. We work with what we know. Its unfortunate when others are so ready to read the nastiness into it and cry foul.
The pace of progress in artificial intelligence (I’m not referring to narrow AI) is incredibly fast. [...] The risk of something seriously dangerous happening is in the five year timeframe. 10 years at most.--Elon Musk

I am in the camp that is concerned about super intelligence," [Bill] Gates wrote. "First the machines will do a lot of jobs for us and not be super intelligent. That should be positive if we manage it well. A few decades after that though the intelligence is strong enough to be a concern. I agree with Elon Musk and some others on this and don\'t understand why some people are not concerned."

DashesAgainst

  • Journeyman
  • *****
  • Join Date: Jul 2011
  • Posts: 157
  • Total likes: 0
    • View Profile
Re: Culture/Worldview and Deities
« Reply #29 on: July 27, 2011, 07:27:42 am »
Quote from: Melamphoros;8295
This thread was inspired by one of my "quietly watch while munching popcorn" threads.  How does culture and worldview relate to deities?  Is it required to have a particular worldview to fully understand a deity?  Is cultural context the only way to understand a deity or just the way the deity was worshiped in the past?  Can one worship or understand a deity without the original worshipers' culture/worldview?

Yes, it it is important to understand a deity's historical and cultural background, imho.  Not imperative, but important.  Those who claim to have an advantage -- that they are superior, simply for having come from those cultures... well, they can kiss it as far as I'm concerned.   Cultural background may be important, but, ultimately, the gods lead the way...
« Last Edit: July 27, 2011, 07:32:19 am by DashesAgainst »
"Of all the rest of mankind, make him your friend who distinguishes himself by his virtue." - The Golden Verses of Pythagoras

Tags:
 

Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
0 Replies
923 Views
Last post September 13, 2012, 09:39:26 am
by Jabberwocky
23 Replies
2374 Views
Last post March 28, 2013, 05:48:46 pm
by Phi92
36 Replies
3236 Views
Last post January 18, 2014, 10:01:16 pm
by kiarakapow
4 Replies
1152 Views
Last post November 04, 2015, 06:07:10 pm
by Hyacinth Belle
3 Replies
494 Views
Last post July 21, 2018, 04:30:29 pm
by Harken

* Who's Online

  • Dot Guests: 22
  • Dot Hidden: 0
  • Dot Users: 1
  • Dot Users Online:

* Please Donate!

The Cauldron's server is expensive and requires monthly payments. Please become a Bronze, Silver or Gold Donor if you can. Donations are needed every month. Without member support, we can't afford the server.

* In Memoriam

Chavi (2006)
Elspeth (2010)
Marilyn (2013)

* Cauldron Staff

Co-Hosts:
LyricFox & Randall

Senior Staff:
Darkhawk

Message Board Staff
Board Coordinator:
Sunflower

Assistant Board Coordinator:
Aster Breo

Board Staff:
Allaya, Chatelaine, HarpingHawke, Jenett, Morag, rocquelaire, Sefiru

Discord Chat Staff
Chat Coordinator:
Morag

Reserve Staff:
Aisling

Cauldron Council:
Bob, Catja, Emma-Eldritch, Fausta, Jubes, Kelly, Phouka, Sperran, Star, Steve, Tana

Cauldron Assistants
[Non-Staff Positions]

Site Assistants
[Non-Staff Positions]
Webmaster:
Randall