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Thread: Christian/ Pagan?

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    Cool Christian/ Pagan?

    Hey there,

    Yes, I know those two terms basically contradict each other, but I was wondering if anyone else felt this way. I was raised Christian, and though I dont go to church or basically practice any other part of the religion as "other Christians" do, I still believe in God. Though I doubt most "OC's" would agree with "my version" of God. But I also am very interested in all sorts of things Pagan. I am sort of new to this path so i dont feel like i can say i belong to a specific Pagan identity. I know Pagan is a broad term, and right now thats where i am comfortable leaving it. Like I said I am new to this journey, I am constantly researching and finding as much information as I can. The more i research, the more i find that i have very like-minded views as many who also call themselves Pagan. I believe in Mother Nature and that it is my responsibility to take care of this Earth. Seasonal and lunar celebrations are amazing to me.

    If anyone has any help to offer who maybe found themselves in a similar situation, it would be greatly appreciated. Any info, books, etc on Paganism would be awesome.

    Thanks so much for any help!

    Katie

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    Sr. Member faye_cat's Avatar
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    Re: Christian/ Pagan?

    There are paths that is called "Christian Witch" or "Christo-Pagan" that are worth you looking into. I used to identify as Christian witch a long time ago. There are several followers of those paths that offer so much insight and information. Best wishes for your journey!
    “I am Cat and I walk alone and all ways are the same to me.” ~Rudyard Kipling, The Cat Who Walks By Himself

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    Re: Christian/ Pagan?

    https://norse-mythology.org/ is a website by author Daniel McCoy. I read his book The Viking Spirit and thought it was amazing. It is up to date and scholarly before reading it I had read the traditional norse mythology books and based on new found knowledge they were to christian and inaccurate written by christians just trying to preserve their ancestors culture. Thats how I got my serious start into paganism was through the norse gods though I had skimmed through the wicca sections of the internet and bookstores as a child. I did not get serious about it until I found Odinism.
    whatcha listening to thread is my playlist for today music i mean

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    Re: Christian/ Pagan?

    Hello Katie! I'm so glad you found our corner of the web. Welcome to PF. AT the risk of boring you to tears, I would really like to share my story with you.

    I found myself in a similar situation to you about six or seven years ago, but unlike you, I was a practising Christian and leader in my church (and still am today). I started to notice that the God that was being preached from the pulpit didn't always fit what I was observing around me. I also felt a keen responsibility towards our earth which isn't directly addressed in churches today. So I prayed 'God, if you're there, show me who You really are.' That prayer has opened my understanding of God in generous ways.

    I've learned so much about how beautiful Christianity is at its core and have come to appreciate the richness other traditions can offer. I feel that there can always be a blending of beliefs because although we use different words, I do believe that most religious experiences and ultimate goals aim for the same thing. We are all looking to reach our utmost potential. Some of us like the emphasis of an individualistic path, others like the idea of being connected to everyone and everything around us. I am of the latter. The more connected I feel, the larger I feel.

    I really want to encourage you in your wonder and respect for this earth and its cycles. It is the divine expression of God. All there is to know of God, we can know through this physical realm. From the smallest particle to the vastness of the multiverse, His personality is reflected in it all.
    For since the creation of the world his invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse. Romans 1:20
    Part of our calling as humans is to steward this beautiful place.
    “The heavens are the heavens of the Lord, but the earth He has given to the sons of men” Psalm 115:16
    After all, the Christian Ultimate Hope: God's plan for salvation; doesn't just include human souls, it includes the whole of creation. Heaven and earth will be renewed alongside the Children of God. In the meantime,
    For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed.[i] Romans 8:19]
    .

    When you worship God with nature, you are doing a righteous thing. You are joining in with something that is already happening. There are many, many places in the Bible that describe that just by it's very existence, this earth is worshipping God. When you are standing in a beautiful place that fills you with peace and wonder, you are standing in a holy place. When we invite the natural world to become part of our praise, we're actually just joining in with what is already happening. I love the lessons that nature can teach us about worship. One of the main ones being: Just being is more than enough.

    As for venerating Christ as a diety, I do feel that you would also need to acknowledge His two counter-parts: Father and Holy Spirit. Everything about Christ ultimately points to the Father. To get a really good grip on what those two aspects of God might mean and indeed what Christ is, I will pass on a book recommendation I received via this forum (shout-out to Torey!). 'On the Wings of Shekinah: Resdiscovering Judaism's Divine Feminine' by Rabbi Leah Novick. I feel that you'll find freedom to incoporate the divine feminine into your spirituality while maintaing a Christian perspective.

    Another resource I found really helpful was the forum and free course that the New Order of Druids offers. There was at the time another Christian Druid on that forum who helped me out somewhat coming to terms with my broadening faith. I've been thinking about resuming that course, so if you do go there, I might see you there On this forum, there's a lot of information on Druidism as well.

    The most central message of Christ: The Kingdom of Heaven is within you. And indeed, in everything around us.
    For in Him all things were created, things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities. All things were created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. Col 1:16,17
    I wish you all the best, Katie! I hope you find fulfilment in whatever way you choose. What I've found over time is that you explore different aspects of a few different traditions. Keep an open mind and allow whatever draws you to speak to you. I liked the idea of digging a deep well, but against Buddhism advice I ended up digging many. Be blessed!
    Last edited by Azvanna; 25 Feb 2019 at 17:39.

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    Re: Christian/ Pagan?

    Most Pagan traditions that I've encountered have room for Chriatian beliefs inside them. Reversing that and putting Pagan beliefs inaide Christianity....

    Err, depending on which beliefs, this might get you the happy go lucky title of heretic in a rather large number of Christian traditions. If you don't particularly mind a little heresy, have fun.
    "It is not simply enough to know the light…a Jedi must feel the tension between the two sides of the Force…in himself and in the universe."
    ―Thon

    "When to the Force you truly give yourself, all you do expresses the truth of who you are,"

    Yoda

    Yoda told stories, and ate, and cried, and laughed: and the Padawans saw that life itself was a lightsaber in his hands; even in the face of treachery and death and hopes gone cold, he burned like a candle in the darkness. Like a star shining in the black eternity of space.

    Yoda: Dark Rendezvous

    "But those men who know anything at all about the Light also know that there is a fierceness to its power, like the bare sword of the law, or the white burning of the sun." Suddenly his voice sounded to Will very strong, and very Welsh. "At the very heart, that is. Other things, like humanity, and mercy, and charity, that most good men hold more precious than all else, they do not come first for the Light. Oh, sometimes they are there; often, indeed. But in the very long run the concern of you people is with the absolute good, ahead of all else..."

    John Rowlands, The Grey King by Susan Cooper

    "You come from the Lord Adam and the Lady Eve", said Aslan. "And that is both honour enough to erect the head of the poorest beggar, and shame enough to bow the shoulders of the greatest emperor on earth; be content."

    Aslan, Prince Caspian by CS Lewis



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    Re: Christian/ Pagan?

    If you look at the indigenous pagan beliefs, ancient or modern, many include a belief in a supreme being, a creator: most Africans, North and South (but not Central) Americans, modern Hindus, ancient Chinese, etc. Similarly, many people include a a belief in gods in Christianity, by considering them angels: e.g. "Africanist" churches.

    As has been said, Druids are worth looking into: some say it's a religion, some say it's a philosophy, many are pagans, a few are Christians — no-one can ever accuse you of not being a real druid! And you get the emphasis on the Earth which is important to you.

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    Re: Christian/ Pagan?

    Quote Originally Posted by Azvanna View Post
    Hello Katie! I'm so glad you found our corner of the web. Welcome to PF. AT the risk of boring you to tears, I would really like to share my story with you.

    I found myself in a similar situation to you about six or seven years ago, but unlike you, I was a practising Christian and leader in my church (and still am today). I started to notice that the God that was being preached from the pulpit didn't always fit what I was observing around me. I also felt a keen responsibility towards our earth which isn't directly addressed in churches today. So I prayed 'God, if you're there, show me who You really are.' That prayer has opened my understanding of God in generous ways.

    I've learned so much about how beautiful Christianity is at its core and have come to appreciate the richness other traditions can offer. I feel that there can always be a blending of beliefs because although we use different words, I do believe that most religious experiences and ultimate goals aim for the same thing. We are all looking to reach our utmost potential. Some of us like the emphasis of an individualistic path, others like the idea of being connected to everyone and everything around us. I am of the latter. The more connected I feel, the larger I feel.

    I really want to encourage you in your wonder and respect for this earth and its cycles. It is the divine expression of God. All there is to know of God, we can know through this physical realm. From the smallest particle to the vastness of the multiverse, His personality is reflected in it all. Part of our calling as humans is to steward this beautiful place. After all, the Christian Ultimate Hope: God's plan for salvation; doesn't just include human souls, it includes the whole of creation. Heaven and earth will be renewed alongside the Children of God. In the meantime, .

    When you worship God with nature, you are doing a righteous thing. You are joining in with something that is already happening. There are many, many places in the Bible that describe that just by it's very existence, this earth is worshipping God. When you are standing in a beautiful place that fills you with peace and wonder, you are standing in a holy place. When we invite the natural world to become part of our praise, we're actually just joining in with what is already happening. I love the lessons that nature can teach us about worship. One of the main ones being: Just being is more than enough.

    As for venerating Christ as a diety, I do feel that you would also need to acknowledge His two counter-parts: Father and Holy Spirit. Everything about Christ ultimately points to the Father. To get a really good grip on what those two aspects of God might mean and indeed what Christ is, I will pass on a book recommendation I received via this forum (shout-out to Torey!). 'On the Wings of Shekinah: Resdiscovering Judaism's Divine Feminine' by Rabbi Leah Novick. I feel that you'll find freedom to incoporate the divine feminine into your spirituality while maintaing a Christian perspective.

    Another resource I found really helpful was the forum and free course that the New Order of Druids offers. There was at the time another Christian Druid on that forum who helped me out somewhat coming to terms with my broadening faith. I've been thinking about resuming that course, so if you do go there, I might see you there On this forum, there's a lot of information on Druidism as well.

    The most central message of Christ: The Kingdom of Heaven is within you. And indeed, in everything around us.

    I wish you all the best, Katie! I hope you find fulfilment in whatever way you choose. What I've found over time is that you explore different aspects of a few different traditions. Keep an open mind and allow whatever draws you to speak to you. I liked the idea of digging a deep well, but against Buddhism advice I ended up digging many. Be blessed!




    Thank you so much for your reply! I am so happy to learn that I am not alone in this journey. I am so excited about all of it. Thank you also for your book recommendation, I just added it to my Amazon Library. Also, for the free course should I just google New Order of Druids, or is there a specific website I need to go to?

    - - - Updated - - -

    Thank you for your reply. Like I said, I am new to this and am trying to heavily research. Theres so much information out there sometimes its overwhelming to go through, but Im working on it. You are not the first one to recommend looking into Druids, so I think I will definitely start there. Thanks again!

  8. #8
    Moderator Azvanna's Avatar
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    Re: Christian/ Pagan?

    Quote Originally Posted by katiemichelle View Post
    Thank you so much for your reply! I am so happy to learn that I am not alone in this journey. I am so excited about all of it. Thank you also for your book recommendation, I just added it to my Amazon Library. Also, for the free course should I just google New Order of Druids, or is there a specific website I need to go to?

    - - - Updated - - -

    Thank you for your reply. Like I said, I am new to this and am trying to heavily research. Theres so much information out there sometimes its overwhelming to go through, but Im working on it. You are not the first one to recommend looking into Druids, so I think I will definitely start there. Thanks again!
    Thanks for taking it in! You’re right, it’s a good idea to start in one place. Druidcircle.org is NoD’s website. Of course, would love to see you posting here too! There’s a lot of really good resources here in our stickies and such. There is probably one on Druidism..http://www.paganforum.com/showthread...-for-Beginners
    try to balance what you learn with what you do. I feel like I focussed too much on learning and not enough doing at first and lost a bit of knowledge as a result. NoD offers both learning and doing framework.
    Last edited by Azvanna; 26 Feb 2019 at 14:18.

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    Re: Christian/ Pagan?

    What we think of as "mainstream" Christianity isn't really what historical Christianity has been, in all times and in all places. Frequently, historical Christianity has been more like pagan beliefs that many Christians know.

    Consider Ethiopian Christianity:

    http://wonder-cabinet.sites.gettysbu...opian-scrolls/
    Those who have suffered understand suffering and therefore extend their hand.

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  10. #10
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    Re: Christian/ Pagan?

    I've rarely found the average christian to be a paragon of orthodoxy. People cling to little things, usually not even thinking about how their worldview may interact with it. That being said, any discussion of fusion is very much edging into the territory of heresy, but what's the point of faith without a little heresy? I'm going to copy my response from this thread regarding what a fusion of christian and pagan beliefs entails.

    Quote Originally Posted by Corvus
    It's a syncretic religion, hardly anything new nor especially unique. There's even some ways of interpreting the scriptures which allow for it. The exacts will differ based on the specific person but, in my opinion it can be examined archetypally. Essentially, Christ is a dying god figure and can be seen as the similar or the same as other dying gods. Similarly, Mary is a mother goddess figure and can be seen as manifesting in various female goddesses. One could examine different pagan deities as being aspects of the godhead, or mistaken for other divinities while being God.

    The biggest hurdle while still attempting to maintain scriptural integrity is the polytheism aspect. It can be avoided by with the above, viewing these figures as aspects of God, and therefore there is only one being actually being worshipped or revered, or it can be done by rationalizing your pagan gods as not being truly divinities. In this way pagan gods would be akin to saints, enlightened beings which one can work with to better understand God. Reverence of saints is rather polytheistic and an argument could easily be made (and was made by Protestants) that Catholics reverie idols and worship saints. By viewing deity outside of a theological context, it's possible to rationalize their inclusion in Christian practice- though not without some leaps- given they're not really related there can be some hole filling to make it work, even if I think it's sorta cheating. There's also people who think various gods are actually just angels or demons, the latter of which is well attested but, the former is .. well weird but, I have heard it.

    As an aside, witchcraft is a practice which needn't be theologically motivated and there's some... debate over the use of Christian sorcery provided there is no actual worship or adoration. This was the argument made by many 15-16th century sorcerers who engaged in the summoning of angels and demons for the use of magic. They would recite scripture and use "biblical magic" for this and argued that it was therefore done with the consent of God and through His power. It was quite popular with court magicians and many kings had their own personal astrologers. More mainstream church officials were insistent that there were no angels who would serve man and that contact with demons for any reason resulted in an implicit Demonic Pact which was equivalent to witchcraft. Basically they decried this practice as heresy, which is pretty much is but, so is everything else I'll be typing here.

    There's also just ignoring sections of scripture or tradition. Most lay christians don't hold the bible is especially high esteem. Really how many people still espouse that it is divinely inspired? Anything wrought with human hands is subject to human folly and from there it could be expected that scripture is flawed, which opens up many creative possibilities. Making allowances on both sides is then possible. While Christianity was still being adopted throughout the Roman empire, it wasn't uncommon to see offerings to Christ alongside those to Jupiter. For the Roman pagans who were not highly educated on Christianity, for what aspects of it were solidified at the time, Christ was yet another strange and powerful foreign god who should be appeased- you know, just in case. In more modern times, Christ may be worshipped in a patchwork pantheon of divinities- his everlasting love and compassion being valued above the fires of justice and punishment. Religion is ever evolving and fluid; Our acts of worship and theology have changed within every decade, let alone the centuries since the birth of Christ.

    I have a Christian witch friend. She's a Christians but, she's also part of our regular group that observes the sabbaths and full moon. She believes Jesus is good and in his eternal love for all people, she also thinks Hades is cool and that Persephone is a badass, even if she doesn't really worship them by herself. She doesn't think Jesus in his compassion would deny someone salvation for finding fulfillment, no matter the source, so long as they're not actively against him. She'll pray with us when we give offerings to the gods, and sometimes she'll also pray to Jesus. It's her belief these beings we call gods exist and help people, but she's not willing to ascribe diabolism to them because she believes that they, and pagans that work with them, can do good. She questions what the difference is when the goal for a christian and a pagan is both to create good in the world. I think she's pretty similar to many other Christians with pagan tendencies.

    Technically everything she does with us is heresy, but we've never been discussing any mainstream Christian group here. Heretical orders have existed since the death of Christ, many syncretizing in various degrees with native pagan religions; the conversion of old temples to new churches, saints with new names and familiar faces, and sacred festivals with new window wrappings have all been used to convert the natives in the past. Among them some undoubtedly had faith in the Cross, and surely there were many who failed to abandon the magic and tradition of their ancestors. For how many centuries did worship of pagan gods in the guise of christian idols persist? This is little different except in reverse. We are at a time where the worship of the old gods has returned, different and evolved, but returned nonetheless, and in it's readoption there are those who hold onto their original Christianity creating new syncretic forms of worship.
    Based on what little you've told us, there seems little to indicate a need to discard Christianity. I recall an old argument on the subject of idolatry. There has been some contention over the years over the nature of God, or more succinctly, if God exists within nature or simply acts through it. It's an argument over if reverence of nature is an act of worship or idolatry. The orthodox notion is that God is not physical but, that the world is a structure He has made, therefore God exists outside of nature. The scripture is somewhat conflicted but, generally agrees.

    Quote Originally Posted by Romans 1:25 KJV
    Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
    Romans 1:25 argues against the worship of created things, believing it to be a form of idolatry. If you follow the belief that God exists separate from nature then nature is a created thing, a structure no different from a complex machine or an idol, and should not be worshipped. Of course then we get things like Psalms 95:3-5, which indicate God's dominion over all things, but could be interpreted to support nature worship. There's also a number of other verses to the affect that nature glorifies God through it's existence and majesty. Therefore, one could argue, that preservation and reverence of nature is an act that glorifies the divine. Verses like Job 12:7-10 make God seem quite similar to pagan divinities. In the end it's a theological choice over the nature of God and to what order the role of the natural world is.

    Of course, basically all of these arguments apply to angels and saints also. Is the theotokos not revered and respected? What of the archangels prayed to for protection? These are things created and act with the authority of God, yet are the object of reverence despite being only agents of God. I've long made the argument that Mary's reverence is worshipful enough to constitute divinity and talking to any latino christian would be enough to convince many.

    Exact details aside, religion is a living thing. It is not contained in scripture, as much as some would like us to believe, it breathes with the breath of the people. Worship changes, has changed, and will continue to change with the worshippers. It is not an alabaster monolith to remain sterile and without blemish, but something actively built between the mortal and divine. Syncretism is inevitable and absolute truth among humans is impossible. Are we foolish enough to think that modern Christianity has much in common culturally or theologically with the faith of the apostles? And what of regional variance? Christ is worshipped worldwide but, in a multitude of different forms.

    What's even to say modern Christianity captures the true worship of the tetragrammaton? In all likelihood the ancient jewish people were polytheists who only later elevated their God, and they had contact with numerous near east cultures. The similarity of God to other mythological figures is not a coincidence and should not be discounted. The Christ is himself only the most currently popular in a long lineage of dying and resurrecting gods. It is my advice to seek out what comforts you, what brings about love and knowledge, and engage with what kindles the divine spark within you. Discover what you put your faith in and go from there. It's all heresy and none of them can agree on any of it anyway.
    世の中に潜み落下した「アレ」はねえか? 誰が書き換える 世界の汚れは?
    Do you have 'that' which lies dormant within society? Who can overwrite it, the filth in the world?


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