Tuesday, July 27, 2010

can of worms

Disclaimer: I do not mean to offend anyone-this is just something that I  have a strong opinion on and needed to express after YEARS of regression. What better place than cyber space. So if you are easily offended stop reading, click here and enjoy a very non offensive site.

I want to begin by saying that i strongly believe a persons religious beliefs are THEIR beliefs and that NO ONE can tell them they are wrong for what they believe. Faith is a personal relationship with whomever a person chooses.  Some people are are lucky (or are they?) that they may share similar beliefs with others-hence religions-churches-communities.

I was born, baptised, confirmed and married Catholic. And I will die Catholic. This is not to say that in my life - those formative teenage years- there were times i didn't take it seriously and it was shoved down my throat like dry toast. i am grateful for my parents strong faith and even stronger hand in taking us to church EVERY Sunday. I was also lucky enough to marry a man who was raised (for the most part) Catholic. And even luckier to have him join me at church on Sunday-and to FINALLY find a priest HE likes.  (I like him too).  This was important to me.

Anyway back to that can of worms.  It was during my electives in college that i found a greater interest in religions and faiths of the word-America-what have you.  My eyes were opened beyond the stereo types I had formed and beyond my upbringing in small rural Pentwater. (which by the way has 5 churches!)  The majority of my friends are from a Christian background, however I never made their religious choices and beliefs a main factor in our friendship.  Their beliefs are theirs, not mine to judge. When I began blogging I also began reading other blogs. Strangers blogs mind you and a few friends.  I have found a common string in most of these blogs-they all talk about being "Christan" and what is the "Christan" way to live your life. Great, good for you, that's a nice place to start.

But then I started thinking...I'm sure other people, strangers like me, read these blogs about decorating, cooking, life, raising families...etc. What does a Jewish person feel about reading this-or do they even read it?  How about a Buddhist or a Muslim. They are strong faiths and we all know older religions than Christianity.  Now I'm not claiming to be a theologian of any kind, but do we really want segregate our fellow friends by throwing around the "Christian way" left and right?  Are they saying that a person of Jewish faith doesn't lead a holy and morally correct life?

I think it's wonderful that other bloggers feel so open to sharing their beliefs with the world-more power to you.  Sometimes though,  I just feel like maybe they should stop and realize that they aren't the only ones who have these great beliefs. It really makes my blood boil when people talk about the "Christian" way.  It feels like segregation all over again. Putting a label on it....excluding others. That doesn't seem very Christian to me now. Have they enclosed themselves in such a large bubble that they are missing the point? Or is it me? Jesus would want us to love our neighbors, green, blue, smelly, Jewish, Dutch, atheist, all the same. God would too. And I bet Allah does too. I'm pretty sure Buddha might. Why are these bloggers not more open to acknowledge our shared morals and beliefs? Portions of the bible, in some version, is shared by Muslims, Jews and Christians. Hello! Connection! Wake up!

My cousin married a Muslim, she was raised Catholic. They have a great life, a great family and great morals. I have a good friend who is an atheist-she was raised Christian. She is funny, kind and would bend over backward for you. My best friends brother just married a Jewish girl whose family welcomed his protestant family with open arms into their own. Sharing and merging traditions of faith, love and family. 
Are they no longer "good" people for going outside of the Christian bubble? Of course not. They are wonderful, loving, ACCEPTING people. Not judging. If we all just live by the golden rule, teach by example, learn from our mistakes and follow in the footsteps laid out befor us we'd have a better place to play, raise our families and live our lives. Right?

There is a book that I've been wanting to read for sometime now...

Maybe I can get some answers...some understanding...and another point of view.  I am more than willing to unzip my Catholic bubble and learn from others. My beliefs are strong-I'm not worried-Granny isn't going to roll over.  But to see the other side of the coin...might be good for a lot of people.

P.S. I also believe in the Easter Bunny-my dad saw him. My dad doesn't lie.

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