designing a new religion: perhaps copying an old religion
This past Sunday, I heard the pastor say, “Be blessed,” to an infant during that little girl’s baptism. I couldn’t stop thinking of the Pagan greeting and good-bye expression of “Blessed be“ (slight change in the order of these two words).
As I’ve mentioned many times, the similarities between the two religions fascinate me — definitely not what I should’ve thought of during worship service. Nonetheless, at times, it feels like two interpretations of the same faith systems.
Just last week, I watched a YouTube video from a British Pagan (perhaps a purer form of Neopaganism) talking about sacred spaces just as in the Christian practice of Lectio Divina.
One thing from another video that’s kept coming back to my conscious mind has been psychological factors of Pagan rites — as the fire ritual of burning a piece paper with what one wants to get rid of and then throwing those ashes away from one’s home (purging oneself from those bad ideas, events, negativity, etc).
Another thing that’s always caught my attention is the idea of being one with nature (usually one’s sacred space)
as in Oneism, the religion that I made up (quoted below), included in my Under the Thelian Sky series.
WORSHIP DEITY: Oneself
RELIGION NAME: Oneism
HOLIDAY: One’s birthday, that of family members and friends
- We believe that we are all deities without any form of supernatural powers or other fantasies. We, children of Aedin, colonized this world several millennia ago. We do not know or care to understand who or what created us in the first place.
- Hence we worship ourselves and one another. We believe in an afterlife, in which we would continue to care for our families and immediate especially our friends. To do this, our main rule is to love and protect others as we should care for ourselves. This means that we are careful of the environment’s health and how it affects us including what we eat and drink.
- Hence we do not eat any foods that may poison or damage us — for example, no meats, no drugs, no liquor or other toxins. Wine and beer are not included in this list since they are good for the digestive system as long as it is in moderation.
- Hence we are One with each other, the world and the cosmos. For this reason, we also take care of all living things.
- Hence all forms of order are established by the oldest member of the family or immediate group — called the Family Elder whose responsibility is to guide and care for others in his/her family or immediate group.
RULES & RITES TO ABIDE BY:
- Care for others especially the elderly and children as well as oneself.
- Do not intake any form of toxins such as animal products and by-products, smoking, alcohol other than four ounces of light brew within a sol’s time and drugs except for prescribed medications.
- Rest and enjoy one’s life as long as it does not interfere negatively on another’s life.
- Gather in commune once a week at least with others at least once a week under the supervision of the Family Elder and enjoyed by all especially the children.
- Respect all forms of authority established by man as long as they are fair and/or do not go against our faith.
- Understand that as deities we have the responsibility help and care for ourselves and each other.
- Care for children by their parents. If there are no parents, the care of any child goes to the immediate family or the community in the lack of the latter. As such children are everyone’s children although directly under the custody and protection of their parents and/or caretakers (family member registered as guardian at birth of the child and his/her siblings).
- Support, encourage and enforce all rules. In the event that someone breaks them, such individual should not be cast from the society, but rather allowed to study our principles again.
- Save one’s birthday, that of family members and friends as the only holy holidays.
* copyright 2012, all rights reserved
By the way, listen to this cool Pagan music!