Monday, October 1, 2012

Faith Without Dogma

I had a bit of a revelation this week, dear readers, and I've given it some serious thought before presenting it here.

I accepted Jesus.  I asked him to take over for me.  I had a conversation with God, if you will.  I felt the love, I felt the compassion, and I am so ready to be passing it on to others.

But there's a glitch in the system.  Maybe it's just me, maybe it's the whole system, maybe it's not a glitch at all.

I....have a mixed faith.

I believe in Jesus.  I believe in Grace.  I believe in the Christian view of compassion and love and caring for one another.

I don't believe in hell.  I don't believe in an angry God. I don't believe in strict rules with immediate punishment.

Which isn't to say I don't believe in evil.  I am very aware that there is evil in the world.  I see it every time I turn on the news and someone has been hurt by another for any given reason.  I see it every time a young person takes their life because they have been tormented for too long.  I see it every time there is war coverage.

I just don't see how there can be a hell for eternity.  That's all.

I still practice and love aspects of Wicca.  I love the respect and love for nature.  I love the energy that I can feel in my very veins.  I love the blessing of homes and of others.  I love the embracing of the feminine nature and of female energy.  I find it empowering and beautiful.

I still meditate sometimes.  I pray constantly.  I talk directly to God without going through saints or priests or mediators.  I still read everything I can get my hands onto.  I refuse to be narrow.

I believe in faith without dogma, in God without religion, in love and grace without exceptions.

By many definitions, I am not allowed to be called a Christian even though I accepted Jesus as my way.  Even though I've always talked with God and done what felt right in my gut.  Even though the Grace aspect comes from Jesus.

And in many ways, I am still conflicted about that, about names, about straight lines and fine print.  About the fact that I have to "define" myself through my personal journey.

Maybe it's no one's business.  Maybe it's just me, making it harder than it is, trying to voice what I can't understand, trying to understand a force and being that is beyond any of our mortal thoughts.

But I can't help but think that maybe, just maybe, there's some truth in there.  That if we were to stop pointing fingers and judging those around us, if we were to stop insisting that we are always the right ones and they (whoever the they may be) are the wrong ones, if we were to stop insisting in punishment if you don't belive one certain way,  that maybe we could focus on loving our fellow men and women.

 That maybe, we can focus on doing the right thing, on helping those who need us, on remembering to say a quiet prayer for those on the street corners and the woman in line behind us in the grocery store.

I am by no means an expert.  And maybe I'm wrong. I suspect there are many that think I am.  That's okay with me.

But I'm going to do exactly what I think.  No dogma, no pegging into holes, no pointing fingers. 

I'm going to love with my arms open and greet the new day without holding back from here on.  I will reflect that love, the love without a name, the love too great for me to even begin to explain. 

Will you join me?


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