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TexasMadness Profile
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News: Losing Faith


This news story is not about paganism per se, but I found the article interesting and it has made me think of the way in which non-Christians (pagans or atheist or anyone else) are viewed.

[sign in to see URL]

You can either listen to the audio or just read the text. It's about a minister who discovers after 9 years in service that she has become an atheist. She is shunned by her community and struggles with the consequences of her 'coming out'.

Do you think things would have been worse or better if she had come out as a pagan? I sounds like she is just being ignored as an atheist. I wonder if someone would have been violent toward her if she had been a pagan.

My thoughts are that a LACK of faith at all is probably something that a Christian might think could be fixed. But a faith in something "wrong" (paganism) is the work of the Devil. Well, I guess atheism could be the work of the Devil too.

I don't know - I just think religious attitudes in this country are so backward. It can be a bit depressing sometimes!
5/4/2012, 6:02 pm Link to this post Send Email to TexasMadness   Send PM to TexasMadness
 
Queenyforever Profile
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Re: News: Losing Faith


I believe her coming out as an Atheist, was probably easier than her coming out as a Pagan.
My heart goes out to [sign in to see URL]'m so very glad she has her husband. I like what he said about 'not his place'...
But in this society, being an Atheist, is actually more acceptable than being Pagan. Atheists have no religion and as such, society thinks with 'help' they can be saved.
But Pagans have a religion, one steeped in a very deep and ancient [sign in to see URL] one that most Christians were taught meant only devil worship and [sign in to see URL] so this makes Pagans not worthy of saving.
I hope for this woman's sake, she can learn to take the love she felt at her Atheist coming out and ignore the hatred from those who are supposed to 'turn the other cheek' and 'love they neighbor.'.. emoticon

---

✴ Birthplace: Earth ✴ Race: Human ✴ Politics: Freedom ✴ Religion: Love♥

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Saijen SilverWolf1 Profile
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Re: News: Losing Faith


It's really sad the response she got from people who were suppose to be her friends. I kind of know how she [sign in to see URL] for a very different reason.

When I finally told my best friend in AL about the abuse I had endured at the hands of my husbad (now ex), she turned her back on me. As did all but 2 of the ladies from the church I was attending at the [sign in to see URL] after only one attempt (they took me to lunch) to get me to go to counseling with him, they, too, turned their backs on me. I had tried to get him to go to counseling with me years [sign in to see URL] I was told there was NOTHING wrong with him, our marriage was fine, and there was no way he was going to counseling. I tried for well over a year to get him to agree to [sign in to see URL] each time, it got me some type of [sign in to see URL] verbal, mental and emotional.

I'm really thankful that her husband is standing behind her, regardless of how he feels. The people that ended up helping me were my boss, and my current [sign in to see URL] there was NO ONE for almost 21 years.

I'm not sure if it's really harder for a person coming out as an Atheist, or as a Pagan. My youngest daughter is an [sign in to see URL] strong leanings toward Atheism. My oldest leans more toward Christianity, and my middle daughter is somewhat confused I think. It was kind of hard for me when my youngest informed me of her religious views, so I can see how it would have affected those in this woman's [sign in to see URL] for a group of people who are suppose to love the sinner, hate the sin, they sure went the opposite way, didn't they?

I truly hope she can find a group she fits into, and finds the peace she really [sign in to see URL] of where, or how.

---
"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you"
~~@Saijen@~~
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TexasMadness Profile
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Re: News: Losing Faith


I'm still not sure having faith in "nothing" is more offensive that having faith in something "wrong". But of course, I don't really know, having never been Christian myself. It's just that I personally feel more confident in telling people I'm an atheist than telling people I have pagan leanings.

Either way, neither one is well accepted by a lot of people who profess to love thy neighbor!
5/10/2012, 2:41 am Link to this post Send Email to TexasMadness   Send PM to TexasMadness
 
Saijen SilverWolf1 Profile
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Re: News: Losing Faith


True, Texas! Those who are supposed to love thy neighbor, rarely do!

---
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~~@Saijen@~~
5/11/2012, 3:02 am Link to this post Send Email to Saijen SilverWolf1   Send PM to Saijen SilverWolf1 Yahoo
 
WanderingMomma Profile
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Re: News: Losing Faith


Totally eavesdropping here,

Being raised Christian (and leaving it) I can see how a minister turning atheistic can seem like a betrayal to those who have been entrusting their spiritual care to her. And so following scripture "bad company corrupts good morals" they feel justified in their new betrayal of her spiritual wellbeing.

I do find it hard that no one would have suggested that she was burnt out and needed some love and care. When all you do is care for others, it can seem as though the world where off balance and may lack a "controlling force."

I agree that telling Christian family I've gone pagan is scarier than telling them I don't believe at all, but the smarter (and I mean that in a "not blind-sheep" sorta way) ones agree that, boiled down, we really believe the same stuff just with different names and images. So in hindsight, telling those family members I follow a goddess and honor Mother Earth was easier than calling myself Agnostic (a phase I went through).

Anyway- just some rambling thoughts
5/31/2012, 9:28 pm Link to this post Send Email to WanderingMomma   Send PM to WanderingMomma Blog
 
Saijen SilverWolf1 Profile
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Re: News: Losing Faith


[sign in to see URL] can never eavesdrop [sign in to see URL]. Glad you decided to post!!!

I'm sure, to so many, it truly did feel like a betrayal, and may have felt that way to her, as well. One thing I learned, early on, that in most churches, regardless of denomination, those who will do things will get worked to death, because most are afraid to say "NO" when they are burnt out, or overwhelmed. A pastor can't always say 'NO', even when they really feel like they can't go on, so I can imagine her being fully burnt out, like you mention.

I still have not just outright told my family (or most of them) that I am following a different path, although I think my Mom has finally figured it out, to a degree. I drop hints, but they're very subtle. It's sad, really, because it's not their reaction so much that I don't want to deal with, as the influx of Christian stuff in my e-mail, and little jabs "I'm praying for you that the scales be removed from your eyes and you see the error of your ways".. it's the endless things of that nature that I really don't want to deal with, which would, eventually, cause a HUGE rift, and I love my family dearly, so, I just keep my mouth shut. It's hard, because I feel like I'm living a lie, even though my family knows I no longer attend church, and that our best friends are Pagan. At least my Mom knows that they are. Sometimes, underneath it all, I think she envies me the freedom I've found, but she's too scared to admit it, and I won't push it.

It's hard to be in this position, for anyone, let alone a pastor/minister of the Christian faith.
I really don't look at it as losing faith, but more like finding faith on a different path.

---
"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you"
~~@Saijen@~~
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Re: News: Losing Faith


I 'came out' so to speak with my Mom last [sign in to see URL] with the WHOLE family, as we sat along side my little Sisters bedside after they unplugged her from the tubes and everyone was waiting for her to die, just this last March 10th!
The Hospital had a woman who came in and said some "christian" words of [sign in to see URL] left (I noticed only one person in the whole room said "amen" when she was done). I then had the either fortitude or craziness to, stand up and say I was of a "different belief, I followed the Naturalist Pagan path" and wanted to know if it was okay for me to speak a few words for my [sign in to see URL] everyone nodded yes. Don't know if they were just stunned or freaked or what. Did not really care. She was my Sister, and I felt she was already gone. Her spirit had left minutes [sign in to see URL] I asked the Goddess to wrap her loving arms around my Sister, take her safely and quickly through the veil into [sign in to see URL] kissed my sister on the forehead and moved away. Her "body" actually died later when her liver quit....
I ended up holding most ALL of them as they wept, when she was pronounced dead. Mom said, she did not care what I was, she was to old to change, but she was HAPPY that I was who I am, and that she was glad I was there, as I was her rock.... emoticon
But my whole family and many friends, now know exactly what I am.... emoticon

---

✴ Birthplace: Earth ✴ Race: Human ✴ Politics: Freedom ✴ Religion: Love♥

6/5/2012, 2:25 pm Link to this post Send Email to Queenyforever   Send PM to Queenyforever Blog
 
Saijen SilverWolf1 Profile
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Re: News: Losing Faith


Queeny, I'm so pleased it worked out so well for you. I hate that it took those circmstances, but I admire your willingness to endure whatever could have come out of that.

I'm still not that [sign in to see URL] Mom goes, perhaps, but till then, I know I couldn't handle what she would throw at [sign in to see URL] right now.

---
"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you"
~~@Saijen@~~
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Syrakynn Profile
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Re: News: Losing Faith


I am an Atheist with pagan leanings. I do not believe in any gods of any kind, but I do believe in the energies of world around us and I do believe that with the right focus, it is possible to tap into that natural energy.

My mother and husband are the same and my kids are being raised the same. My father is an atheist without the pagan leanings. My grandmother is the only one in my family who doesn't know. She is a devout, rabid, bible thumper. Actually I think she knows, I think she's kind of figured it out, but she never asks and never says anything. But she isn't surprised anymore when we don't pray before we eat and she no longer asks my kids if they have learned about Jesus.

I don't have a problem telling people what I am. I am one of those people who doesn't care what people think of me. I'm very particular who I allow to be close to me, so the entire town could shun me and it wouldn't bother me. Even though people here in town (small town in the bible belt)know what out beliefs are, or rather lack there of, no one has shunned us. Maybe it's because it wouldn't do them any good, we wouldn't care. We already keep everyone in town at arms length, I guess it's hard to shun people who are already actively working at keeping you pushed away,lol.

---
Author of the Dragon's Call series, and the Bound novels.
Website http://www.adtrosper.com/
Blog: https://adtrosper.wordpress.com/
6/9/2012, 9:41 pm Link to this post Send Email to Syrakynn   Send PM to Syrakynn Blog
 


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