Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Am I Pagan or Roman Catholic?

Yesterday evening I wrote 3 pages in my journal about this, feeling at the time sure of what I have become. However at the end of all that writing, I realised that I haven't quite understood where I stand and I really need to understand this before I can do anything else.

See since I was a girl, I always basked in the sun, enjoying the countryside, loving every tree, stream, stem of grass, flower, bit of soil that I came by. I collected shells and rocks, I tried understanding astronomy, I spent whole summers at sea rejoicing when I see a star fish or turtle or sea urchin or a sea horse. I ALWAYS felt more at peace and whole out there and gave thanks to the Lord through my enjoying the natural world.

Since I was a little girl, I wanted to visit Africa and its animals, The Amazon and its beautiful forests, wished to become a zoologist where I spent my time out in the wild getting to understand animals and finding ways to help save the natural world. I became a member of WWF, tried to find a good NGO in Malta to become an active volunteer and always as you can see my aim was our mother earth and what it provided us.

So in a way my roots are more pagan than Roman Catholic.... and yet, I still believe in God and Jesus and the bible. The bible written so long ago, made in a way so those people understood it, is I think the most complicated scripture in all religions and the most misinterpreted and misunderstood by both us common people and the ecclesiastics. When ever I read the yoga scriptures on philosophy, I see what God in my religion wanted to say but in oh such a simple way! Paganism is also so much simpler- just love, love everything from the rock you are trodding to the clouds in the sky because EVERYTHING breathes, lives and feels even if we as humans don't think/believe so!

I believe in mother earth and the father sky, I believe in fairies, I pray in Roman Catholic prayers and my own made up prayers, I read the bible now and then but I hardly go to Church coz I do not believe much in the 'earthly followers 'of God. When I go to Church, the priest either drones on as if trying to record something without even seeing human reactions to what he says, either says things that go completely against what I belief God is saying and of course there is all the hypocrisy going on throughout. To make matters worse in my belief of the ecclesiastics, I read this article were the Vatican it seems said:"Nature is no longer a creation to defend, but a divinity to worship," the radio said.
A Vatican spokesman made it clear that this was just film criticism(on Avatar), not theological pronouncements - but emphasised that they do reflect Pope Benedict XVI's views on the dangers of turning nature into a "new divinity".


So I am slightly in a conundrum....am I Pagan or Roman Catholic? am a mix is that even possible? your views might help me see more of what I am so pls get them going! somehow I feel I know the answer to my questions but am afraid to embrace said answers.....

4 comments:

Marie said...

Well I obviously can't tell you what you believe but I can tell you what I believe. I believe that God created the Earth for our enjoyment. I believe that God loves us and wants us to be stewards over this great gift (the Earth) that he provided us. Most importantly, I believe that God loves us much more than we can possibly understand. I know as a mother that I cannot comprehend a love so great that he allowed the suffering and sacrifice of his one and only son to save me from the sins that he knew that I would commit. I don't understand it but I believe that it is true. Hope this helps.

Roxane said...

I have very similar emotions! I feel part catholic, part buddhist, part pagan. It's not an easy thing to feel. When I get overwhelmed with my faith and the "label" i feel pressured to put on it I remember this...God loves all his children unconditionally. There is no wrong answer. As long as you are a good person, that you treat others as you would like to be treated, you are doing great.

Heidi said...

Hi Melissa,

I think it's wonderful that you are considering your beliefs.

If you believe in God, Jesus and the Bible, why not focus on being a Christ follower or 'Christian' first and foremost rather than on denomination lables?

I've been a part of several different denominations of churches due to many moves that I've made over the years (for husbands studies) needing to find a different church. What I look for is an authentic body that is focusing on Christ and his teachings. Due to our fallen nature, no church (or it's members)will ever be purfect, however, perhaps there is a different body more suited for your spiritual growth other than where you have been attending??

Yes, the teachings of the Bible were written long ago, but they are reliable. If you'd like to read more on this a GREAT book to check out is: "The New Testament Documents: Are They Reliable?"
Here's a link to see it on amazon...
http://www.amazon.com/New-Testament-Documents-They-Reliable/dp/0802822193

In general, the Gospels are a great place to start in the Bible if you've not spent a lot of study in there yet.

As for the enjoyment of nature and creation, I'd say yes, by all means enjoy it! However, I'd caution not to let it become an idol above the creator Himself- but let it cause you to be ever more thankful for the wonderful gift that nature is to you.

I'd be more than happy to interact with you more about this if you care to. Email anytimel;
www.1wonderwomanwannabe@gmail.com

Blessings to you in your heartfelt search.

Lyon said...

It is good and healthy to examine yourself and your beliefs, even though at times it can cause quite a bit of stress! Someone else said that they can't tell you what you believe and of course, that is the case. But I do know that no matter what the label, you are you and that is good and right. Follow your heart and stay open, trust your feet on the path and all will be just fine.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Am I Pagan or Roman Catholic?

Yesterday evening I wrote 3 pages in my journal about this, feeling at the time sure of what I have become. However at the end of all that writing, I realised that I haven't quite understood where I stand and I really need to understand this before I can do anything else.

See since I was a girl, I always basked in the sun, enjoying the countryside, loving every tree, stream, stem of grass, flower, bit of soil that I came by. I collected shells and rocks, I tried understanding astronomy, I spent whole summers at sea rejoicing when I see a star fish or turtle or sea urchin or a sea horse. I ALWAYS felt more at peace and whole out there and gave thanks to the Lord through my enjoying the natural world.

Since I was a little girl, I wanted to visit Africa and its animals, The Amazon and its beautiful forests, wished to become a zoologist where I spent my time out in the wild getting to understand animals and finding ways to help save the natural world. I became a member of WWF, tried to find a good NGO in Malta to become an active volunteer and always as you can see my aim was our mother earth and what it provided us.

So in a way my roots are more pagan than Roman Catholic.... and yet, I still believe in God and Jesus and the bible. The bible written so long ago, made in a way so those people understood it, is I think the most complicated scripture in all religions and the most misinterpreted and misunderstood by both us common people and the ecclesiastics. When ever I read the yoga scriptures on philosophy, I see what God in my religion wanted to say but in oh such a simple way! Paganism is also so much simpler- just love, love everything from the rock you are trodding to the clouds in the sky because EVERYTHING breathes, lives and feels even if we as humans don't think/believe so!

I believe in mother earth and the father sky, I believe in fairies, I pray in Roman Catholic prayers and my own made up prayers, I read the bible now and then but I hardly go to Church coz I do not believe much in the 'earthly followers 'of God. When I go to Church, the priest either drones on as if trying to record something without even seeing human reactions to what he says, either says things that go completely against what I belief God is saying and of course there is all the hypocrisy going on throughout. To make matters worse in my belief of the ecclesiastics, I read this article were the Vatican it seems said:"Nature is no longer a creation to defend, but a divinity to worship," the radio said.
A Vatican spokesman made it clear that this was just film criticism(on Avatar), not theological pronouncements - but emphasised that they do reflect Pope Benedict XVI's views on the dangers of turning nature into a "new divinity".


So I am slightly in a conundrum....am I Pagan or Roman Catholic? am a mix is that even possible? your views might help me see more of what I am so pls get them going! somehow I feel I know the answer to my questions but am afraid to embrace said answers.....

4 comments:

Marie said...

Well I obviously can't tell you what you believe but I can tell you what I believe. I believe that God created the Earth for our enjoyment. I believe that God loves us and wants us to be stewards over this great gift (the Earth) that he provided us. Most importantly, I believe that God loves us much more than we can possibly understand. I know as a mother that I cannot comprehend a love so great that he allowed the suffering and sacrifice of his one and only son to save me from the sins that he knew that I would commit. I don't understand it but I believe that it is true. Hope this helps.

Roxane said...

I have very similar emotions! I feel part catholic, part buddhist, part pagan. It's not an easy thing to feel. When I get overwhelmed with my faith and the "label" i feel pressured to put on it I remember this...God loves all his children unconditionally. There is no wrong answer. As long as you are a good person, that you treat others as you would like to be treated, you are doing great.

Heidi said...

Hi Melissa,

I think it's wonderful that you are considering your beliefs.

If you believe in God, Jesus and the Bible, why not focus on being a Christ follower or 'Christian' first and foremost rather than on denomination lables?

I've been a part of several different denominations of churches due to many moves that I've made over the years (for husbands studies) needing to find a different church. What I look for is an authentic body that is focusing on Christ and his teachings. Due to our fallen nature, no church (or it's members)will ever be purfect, however, perhaps there is a different body more suited for your spiritual growth other than where you have been attending??

Yes, the teachings of the Bible were written long ago, but they are reliable. If you'd like to read more on this a GREAT book to check out is: "The New Testament Documents: Are They Reliable?"
Here's a link to see it on amazon...
http://www.amazon.com/New-Testament-Documents-They-Reliable/dp/0802822193

In general, the Gospels are a great place to start in the Bible if you've not spent a lot of study in there yet.

As for the enjoyment of nature and creation, I'd say yes, by all means enjoy it! However, I'd caution not to let it become an idol above the creator Himself- but let it cause you to be ever more thankful for the wonderful gift that nature is to you.

I'd be more than happy to interact with you more about this if you care to. Email anytimel;
www.1wonderwomanwannabe@gmail.com

Blessings to you in your heartfelt search.

Lyon said...

It is good and healthy to examine yourself and your beliefs, even though at times it can cause quite a bit of stress! Someone else said that they can't tell you what you believe and of course, that is the case. But I do know that no matter what the label, you are you and that is good and right. Follow your heart and stay open, trust your feet on the path and all will be just fine.