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Raincloud

When My Faith In Christianity Erodes

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There are many elements of Christianity that draw me back: Jesus, Holy Spirit, the Father, Salvation, sin, and even Hell (I like believing in Hell when I read about Rupert Murdoch), but my belief that Christianity is the only way is eroded when...

I visit Christian forums populated by Americans whose belief in Christianity is synonymous with Far Right Republican politics. Then I start to see that this, was an Empire religion, forced on people by the Roman Empire, and used by social conservatives to maintain their own power in things.

I start to realise that Christianity is only one of many opinions of what is 'God', out there. That the scriptures written after the fact, and that whilst containing many spiritually encouraging things are flawed.

That none of us really know for sure what is going on with this thing called life, and whether we exist beyond death.

I don't think my left wing politics, belief in social liberty and small government is somehow evil, because it's the opposite of what these Christians believe. I can only conclude that my belief in liberty is a good thing, and an actual God would approve.

This is why I am no longer strictly Christian.

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From your description, I'm not sure if your problem is Christianity -- or the Christianity you have been exposed to. It comes in many flavors.

Of course, there are other things you could try. From your description, I think you might enjoy the Agnostic way.

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From your description, I'm not sure if your problem is Christianity -- or the Christianity you have been exposed to. It comes in many flavors.

Of course, there are other things you could try. From your description, I think you might enjoy the Agnostic way.

I think I'll be heading back tot he NeoPagan Wicca way, as a path to experience the divine in my life.

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Jonathan is right about one thing: THOSE CHRISTIANITIES ... they come in a wide variety.

Pagan is good.... Neo or otherwise, I suppose. The Christians of old (or their Master) demonized the Pagans most unfairly. It was all about "market share", although no one called it that back then. Just as it was with the bad-blood between Christians and Jews back then. The Christian tradition has always been an Omnivore... and has adopted (co-opted, really) ideas and traditions from every competing tradition that it encountered.

Having said this much, I suppose it is somewhat "odd" that I continue to self-identify as "a Christian"... but I do. I suppose it derives from an stubborn refusal to "let the bad guys win". Understand that I am using the terms "bad guys" metaphorically., and that what I mean to imply is something closer to "misguided".

At any rate, I am not willing, so far, to allow "Christianity" to be defined by those people who practice a judgmental, punitive, hierarchical, dogmatic, rigid approach to what "God" is all about.

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I start to realise that Christianity is only one of many opinions of what is 'God', out there. That the scriptures written after the fact, and that whilst containing many spiritually encouraging things are flawed.

This is why I am no longer strictly Christian.

I think I'll be heading back tot he NeoPagan Wicca way, as a path to experience the divine in my life.

That sounds about right... No offense, but it doesn't sound like you were ever a Christian in the first place?

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That sounds about right... No offense, but it doesn't sound like you were ever a Christian in the first place?

Thanks for giving it your best Dan.

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I start to realise that Christianity is only one of many opinions of what is 'God', out there. That the scriptures written after the fact, and that whilst containing many spiritually encouraging things are flawed.

That none of us really know for sure what is going on with this thing called life, and whether we exist beyond death.

This is why I am no longer strictly Christian.

It has always been my belief--whatever gets you further towards God, or whomever that Higher Power is. For me any religion is a "wayshower", thought I am a Christian with some other religions inter-mixed. I do not believe one religion is the "one" neither is one better than an other, as long as one practices ones own from the heart and lives according to the "golden rule"-names matter not, following one`s conscience is.

blessings and peace,

Suzanne

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I think I'll be heading back tot he NeoPagan Wicca way, as a path to experience the divine in my life.

Welcome home. :)

Jonathan is right about one thing: THOSE CHRISTIANITIES ... they come in a wide variety.

Pagan is good.... Neo or otherwise, I suppose. The Christians of old (or their Master) demonized the Pagans most unfairly. It was all about "market share", although no one called it that back then. Just as it was with the bad-blood between Christians and Jews back then. The Christian tradition has always been an Omnivore... and has adopted (co-opted, really) ideas and traditions from every competing tradition that it encountered.

Having said this much, I suppose it is somewhat "odd" that I continue to self-identify as "a Christian"... but I do. I suppose it derives from an stubborn refusal to "let the bad guys win". Understand that I am using the terms "bad guys" metaphorically., and that what I mean to imply is something closer to "misguided".

At any rate, I am not willing, so far, to allow "Christianity" to be defined by those people who practice a judgmental, punitive, hierarchical, dogmatic, rigid approach to what "God" is all about.

In the end, all we can do is listen to the inner music. If your song is Christian, then so be it. :)

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Let me get this straight, by what I am reading you were first a Christian, then you became a Wiccan, them you were a Christian again, and now you want to try being a Wiccan for a second time? I think Dan56 makes a good point. It doesn't sound like you were ever a real Christian. It doesn't sound like you were a real Wiccan either. It sounds more like you have been going through an experimental phase. That's fine though. Many of us go through something similar. But I think you would sound more genuine if you stopped bashing Christianity and instead emphasized the positives of Wicca that enticed you back. A religion should never be blamed for the poor actions of some of it's members; because if that's the case then I am sure Christians could go on a negative rant about Wicca too.†?†

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I think I'll be heading back tot he NeoPagan Wicca way, as a path to experience the divine in my life.

Just out of curiosity, it seems you were unhappy enough with the Wiccan-esque neopagan path to cause your return to Christianity, so why go back to it instead of seeking a new path entirely?

I tried the Wiccan-style neopagan path after I left Christianity, and personally found it unsatisfying, so I moved on to something different that better fulfills my spiritual and intellectual needs.

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Excellent suggestion, Leo...

assuming, of course that Raincloud returned to Christianity in a somewhat "reflexive" fashion...

still a good question, in any case.

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One thing I have learned is not to allow others to define my Christianity for me. I guess this is true for Paganism to or there would not be Neo-Pagans.

I recommend that you find your own path and take no heed as to what others define you as. You know in your heart what is what.

One of the reasons I describe myself as a liberal Christian is so no one gets to confuse me with the religous right or conservatism.

Raincloud said "

I don't think my left wing politics, belief in social liberty and small government is somehow evil, because it's the opposite of what these Christians believe. I can only conclude that my belief in liberty is a good thing, and an actual God would approve.

This is why I am no longer strictly Christian".

I would say those beliefs define me as a Christian but what labels one uses is fine with me. In the end its the heart that counts (IMO).

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I would say those beliefs define me as a Christian but what labels one uses is fine with me.

In the end its the heart that counts (IMO).

:thumbu:

Edited by Bro. Hex

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BTW, Raincloud....

So far as what we are able to know about him..... which isn't really that much...

Jesus wasn't "Strictly Christian, either.....

Heck, Jesus wasn't STRICTLY ANYTHING !!
:)

Edited by Bro. Hex

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When we have lost our faith in a spiritual path, we must turn to the original teachings before abandoning tht path. Go back to the teachings of Jesus Christ and re-study those teachings. Then ask yourself, "Have I turned away from the teachings of Jesus Christ or have I turned away from what others say are the teachings of Jesus Christ?" This can be applied to any spiritual tradition: always go back to the original teachings before changing your spiritual path.

Hermano Luis

Moriviví Hermitage

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Very well put Hermano. I myself have been dealing with a similar battle Raincloud, but I've come to recognize that I have not lost faith in the teachings of Jesus Christ, only what it's become. Whatever the path you choose, I pray you find peace and fulfillment at its end.

Edited by RevRattlesnake

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WOW !

Looks like many of us here are "singing from the same hymnal" !! :)

"The original teachings of Jesus"...

Even that is no easy thing to determine...

You must decide for yourself, which words that have been attributed to him,
do YOU believe that he actually spoke...??

and which words have falsely been attributed to him by ... others.
It is ALWAYS your responsibility to determine what to believe,,, and what you put aside.
How could it possibly be otherwise ??

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You must decide for yourself, which words that have been attributed to him,

do YOU believe that he actually spoke...??

and which words have falsely been attributed to him by ... others.

It is ALWAYS your responsibility to determine what to believe,,, and what you put aside.

How could it possibly be otherwise ??

The problem with picking and choosing which words were attributed to Christ is that we inevitably tend to accept what appeals to us and disregard the rest. If I hate my enemies, I can conveniently determine that Jesus didn't really instruct us to pray for our enemies. I can conclude that Jesus said God would forgive us, but he did not require us to forgive others. Or if I'm cheating on my wife, I can presume that anything Christ supposedly said about adultery was falsely attributed to him.

What it comes down to is the desire of liberal minded Christians wanting to conveniently edit out everything they don't agree with. I personally think its impossible for a person to accurately differentiate between what's true and what's false, which is why God preserved his written word in the first place. What your advocating is that if you don't like what's written, forget it, if you don't understand it, ignore it, if it requires something of you, throw it out. Of course your free to do that, but I'll never understand the logic in professing to be a Christian while simultaneously rejecting who Christ was and half of what he taught? Your neither in or out, cold or hot (Revelation 3:16). JMO

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I have been considering the Bahai faith. Bahai accepts the teachings of many of the famous religious leaders including Jesus, Buddha, and Mohammad. I had read much of the literature related to these teachings, which is far from popular opinion and the media say they are, as well as far from what the practitioners do today.

Today people reject the messages given by those like Buddha, Jesus, and other spiritual leaders for individuals that many times pay for people to act healed (Benny Hin) or just make a business out of the tithing, as if it was the best investment plan in history (my wife's old church).

That being said I had already read many books, including Vedas as well, when I found another Abrahamic religion: Bahai. To the Muslims Bahai is apostasy, but they reject all that is not Quran and much of the teachings that is Quran; mostly, much like Christian Prosperity messages mainstream Muslim teachings are gearing toward jihad; unfortunately even the Christians hail the soldiers as heroes at the church and send their young men to die; are we really that different? I spent some time searching other religions but in the end it all came to down to three or four things:

We reap what we sow and do unto others as you would have others do unto you; Jihad was originally taught as 'striving with ones money and oneself for righteousness' and not war; and karma. If we did to others what we wished done to use, wouldn't be more righteous and therefore have good karma? And this reaping/sowing/striving/karmic relationship with each other, ourselves, and creation, wouldn't that symbionic relationship between each other and karma lead us in the direction of thoughts of monism and mutual benefits/harms for the actions we facilitate?

Bahai supports the teachings of all religious leaders; Jewish, Christian, Buddhist, Muslim, Hindu, Shamanic, and others while searching and hoping for advancements in religions.

Isn't it time we move on past this stale, stagnant state of hatred and bloodshed we have been in since the time of the Roman Empire?

Edited by lockjonathon

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The problem with picking and choosing which words were attributed to Christ is that we inevitably tend to accept what appeals to us and disregard the rest. If I hate my enemies, I can conveniently determine that Jesus didn't really instruct us to pray for our enemies. I can conclude that Jesus said God would forgive us, but he did not require us to forgive others. Or if I'm cheating on my wife, I can presume that anything Christ supposedly said about adultery was falsely attributed to him.

What it comes down to is the desire of liberal minded Christians wanting to conveniently edit out everything they don't agree with. I personally think its impossible for a person to accurately differentiate between what's true and what's false, which is why God preserved his written word in the first place. What your advocating is that if you don't like what's written, forget it, if you don't understand it, ignore it, if it requires something of you, throw it out. Of course your free to do that, but I'll never understand the logic in professing to be a Christian while simultaneously rejecting who Christ was and half of what he taught? Your neither in or out, cold or hot (Revelation 3:16). JMO

That is the problem Dan. You mention that the word is preserved (if indeed the bible is the word of God which I doubt) but it has change many times and it took nearly four hundred years to decide what to put into it and even then there were versions that differed. There is no evidence that Paul's take on things had any connection to the views of the disciples and then there is all the edits put in by the scribes.

You can mock the liberal view from your perspective all you like but I do not believe you have any more of a firm basis to stand you view upon. You have to justify the horrific verses of the bible by saying that you see no wrong in them and I do not.

You know I am happy to quote a few if you want.

Edited by Pete

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