Lupus Alae

Spiritflights, fledgling and ancient


Beliefs, Part I: Religion and the Divine

I mentioned in the last post that I am a Druid, and also that I consider myself panentheistic. Not pantheistic, but panentheistic. I believe that the Divine resides within all living things; that we are all connected to it and that reverence for nature and reverence for God, however you define God, are not mutually exclusive. My reverence for all life is one form of reverence for the Divine who guides my life.

I also believe that there are many paths up the mountain, so to speak. If the mountain is our journey to get close to God/get to heaven/whatever other ultimate spiritual goal one might have, why should there be but one path that actually leads to the summit? I have always found the thinking flawed which insists that this religion or that one is the one true religion, the one Truth that applies to everyone in the world, and that those who do not adhere to that particular set of beliefs, worship that god or those gods specifically, are damned or otherwise hopelessly lost in the dark.

What about those who never hear of this "one true path?" Are they condemned because they were just born in the wrong place or situation and missed out? What kind of God would be alright with that? And if these truths are self-evident, why does not every rational being ultimately decide to follow the exact same religion, all over the world?

It seems clear to me, though, that spirituality is natural (no offense intended to my atheist readers -- this is, after all, only my perspective, and I readily admit I am a fallible imperfect being), even if the details come to life in a thousand different ways. Without it, we search, even if we do not know what it is that we seek. We feel empty, uninspired...I believe that all of us yearn for meaning, for that invisible thread that anchors us throughout our lives, and that sustains us in times of trouble and darkness.

I think, then, that all gods across the world are really different faces painted on the same Divine presence. Therefore,
I do not find the Christian Holy Trinity at odds with Shiva, Vishnu, and Brahma; I see no reason the Pagan maiden/mother/crone trio could not be juxtaposed over any other triple facet of godhood in any other religion. If Hindus can accept their three as aspects/facets of one ultimate God, and Christians do the same, and Druids (who believe in some form of the triple facet -- Druids do not all hold the same concept of god(s)/goddess(es) and some embrace no god at all) do the same, etc...why can't those separate religions just be facets of universal worship of whatever the true ultimate form of the divine may be? Different world religions are not so different at all.

I know many people found it somehow offensive or incredible when the movie Dogma portrayed God as a woman...but if a Lord, why not a Lady? Why not Lords *and* Ladies? And what does it really matter what we call g/God as long as it's meant with respect? None of us could possibly know every name ever given to the Divine.

Someone once said, regarding religion, "There's more than one path up the mountain." A reply came, "Ah, but there are many mountains." I should have added, "And they all reach for the same sky."


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