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Re: [mythsoc] other rituals

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  • David S. Bratman
    ... This is what I meant in an earlier post when I referred to judging neo-pagans by inappropriate Christian standards. Other religions (not just paganism) do
    Message 1 of 11 , Oct 7, 2000
      On Sat, 7 Oct 2000 LSolarion@... wrote:

      > In a message dated 09/20/2000 5:15:56 PM Pacific Daylight Time,
      > dbratman@... writes:
      >
      > << some
      > Protestant denominations may have been founded on claims of a new divine
      > revelation, but I believe most were based on their founders' conscience
      > and an awareness of the needs of the community, and the neo-pagans can say
      > the same.) >>
      >
      > I believe most Protestant denominations were founded on interpretations of
      > Scripture concerning certain issues. Neo-Pagans, on the other hand, pride
      > themselves on neither possessing nor needing any revelation beyond that of
      > their own wishes. That's why so many belong to "traditions" they made up
      > themselves.

      This is what I meant in an earlier post when I referred to judging
      neo-pagans by inappropriate Christian standards. Other religions (not
      just paganism) do not depend on divine revelation: which I said before, so
      I'm not sure why you're reiterating it. I read your reptition of this
      point and the way you use it to contrast Christianity with neo-paganism as
      highly critical of the latter, but I could be wrong.

      "Found[ing a denomination] on interpretation of Scripture" is what I meant
      by "based on their founders' conscience." In Christianity one filters
      one's conscience through Scripture (or possibly vice versa), and that's a
      wholly appropriate and admirable thing to do - in the Christian tradition.
      When Luther said "Here I stand: I can do no other," he was describing his
      own conscience's position on Scriptural interpretation and, more to the
      point, about its expression in then-current Christian practice. But other
      religions don't work that way: they have conscience, but not Scriptural
      interpretation.

      In paganism, there are two factors: first, that accurate information on
      how the pagans of old conducted their rituals is hard to come by (much of
      what information we have comes from non- and even anti-pagans, and can't
      always be trusted), and second, that neo-pagans are simply under no
      theological obligation to re-create everything their ancestors did, even
      if no modern civil barriers stand in the way.

      I myself belong to a branch of Judaism called Liberal Judaism, which
      includes the majority of American Jews. In contrast to the Orthodox, who
      follow all the 613 commandments and Talmudic interpretations thereof,
      Liberal Jews decide for themselves and/or as groups which commandments
      make sense under modern circumstances, and ignore the ones that they
      consider don't. (The branches of Liberalism, Conservative and Reform,
      are distinguished not by theory, but by whether they tend to follow more
      or fewer of the commandments.)

      So any criticism of neo-pagans for following their own wishes instead of
      revelation, if it doesn't give them any credit for having consciences on
      the subject, would also apply to my religion. So I am cautiously curious
      about what you meant here.

      David Bratman
      - not responsible for the following advertisement -
    • Paul F. Labaki
      Peace, Paul Labaki ... After all, to some, we ... Some of us believe that is precisely what we do. Different strokes for different folks, but Catholics
      Message 2 of 11 , Oct 10, 2000
        Peace,
        Paul Labaki

        > In a message dated 10/7 LSolarion@...

        >

        After all, to some, we
        > Christians are cannibalistic in that we eat the body of our god -- almost.


        Some of us believe that is precisely what we do. Different strokes for
        different folks, but Catholics (including yours truly) should admit that
        however civilized we have become -- or think we are -- ours is an ancient
        religion and most of our doctrine and practice is based on beliefs that have
        been held since shortly after the time of Christ. The power of the
        eucharist is as primitive as it is timeless.

        Peace,
        Paul
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