Friday, June 10, 2011

On the Delicate Art of Winning Spiritual Warfare

Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored!" Today we channel that blighter Niccolo Machiavelli for a discussion on the delicate ins and outs of spiritual warfare.

Our friend Mrs. B (see sidebar, "Pagan Soccer Mom") won the contest for "Top 25 Blogs of Faith" on a site called "Circle of Moms." It seems that many Pagan mothers visit "Circle," because many of the top 25 blogs were by Pagan writers.

As Mrs. B became poised to win the contest, which she didn't even enter by her own volition, she began getting hate mail from the lunatic fringe of Christianity. She has been genteel in not posting these vitriolic comments, but she has graciously posted many warm wishes from Christian moms who said her blog has helped them understand Wicca better.

This is all nice and nice, as we hillbillies used to say. Truth be told, however, it's easy to see how Christians could view a Pagan mom getting positive publicity as an act of spiritual warfare.

Whenever you believe that your religion is the one and only way to achieve immortal bliss, you must ... must ... view every other religion as an impediment to this bliss. When faced with something like Mrs. B's success, true Christians can only reply, "Well, you have a nice blog, and you won the contest, but you are going to go to Hell unless you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior."

It's a fact. If spirituality must be considered warfare (and who the hell thought up this crap?), then strict Christianity is a line in the sand. You can't have one foot on the bus and the other on the curb.

Now, there are many, many people who say, "I'm a Christian, and I still have respect for other faiths." I believe you, but if you don't think the people in those faiths are going to Hell, you are not, strictly speaking, a Christian. You appreciate Jesus, but you haven't bought in. The true believers, the buyers, so to speak, have a core tenet: Believe in Jesus, or hit the hot.

The exclusionary nature of mainstream religions has eroded their power among thinking people. The more we learn about the age of the Earth, the nature of the Cosmos, and the long history of humankind, the more unthinkable strict Christianity becomes. In fact, it's incredibly cheeky for any religion to claim sole proprietorship of immortal bliss. For all we know, cats could get immortal bliss! Why not? They're pretty smart mammals!

One way to fight, and win, spiritual warfare is to invite all sorts of religions to your table on equal standing. Think of it as King Arthur's Round Table of Gods and Goddesses. There's a seat for Jesus, by golly! And for Buddha and Muhammad! We'll put Muhammad near Horus, Osiris, Baal, and Jesus, since they all come from more or less the same part of the world. But other than discreet seating by regional location, our table is round, round, round. All are welcome on equal standing.

Humans are not, by nature, egalitarian. We're wired to consider ourselves exceptional, and the other guys damned and doomed. But you know what? That's a tired model. It's time for a change. Open hearts, open minds, and every destination with 10,000 ways to get there!

Harm no one. Love widely and well. Show mercy and respect to all. When someone asks you why you do this, you say, "Everything is."


Anonymous said...

Actually, the penalty for sin is death, not hell or eternal life (Romans). But hey, if you don't even know your own holy book, I guess you can get all arrogant and demand that others follow your ignorance. Seems par for the course.

Here's a quick lesson:

Not that you'll listen. You, just like other cult members, are insufferably arrogant about your ignorance. I guess pride and anger feature heavily in your so-called "Christian" world.

Alex Pendragon said...

Unlike Anonymous, I must, sigh, confess, I HAVE to admit this....sigh...OK.....DON'T happen to possess the absolute truth. Yea, it's true, I misplaced it somewhere and I just can't find it. However, it is nice to know that there are more than several million different versions of the truth out there to pick from. I know it's POSSIBLE that I might mistakenly pick out the wrong one, but hey, that's the nature of religion, right? You pick the one and only true path to God and cross your fingers; all you have to do is die to find out if you scored a winner or screwed up and descend into some sort of Paris Hilton Reality Show for all eternity. It could be worse, I guess. Imagine spending all eternity running Sarah Palin or Michele Bachman's presidential campaigns..........

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Onward, Christian soldiers, marching as to war . . . against Mrs. B, the lovable witch of domesticity? LOL.

Judy Bracher Carmichael said...

Well, I was wishing for a simple "Like" button on Blogger -- because this is a fantastic blog, and I had a hundred comments. And then I ran into the comment from "Anonymous."

I find it sad, that that person uses the "bible" as a primary source, unable to see it was written by MEN with fantastic imaginations, not unlike any novel writers' imaginations before or since. Still fiction. Fiction usually tells someone's truth; with finesse it is capable of leading the reader in many, many directions.

I really need to write a novel, and market it by telling people god dictated it to me .....

Judy Bracher Carmichael said...

(And I suppose "Anonymous" is not going to die? Because the bible said so? Or was he just trying to call a technical foul? Based on biblical tenants?)

kimc said...

There are other ways to interpret the bible. The Universalists took a line from the bible and decided it said everyone is saved. And they think of themselves as Christian, and who are the fundamentalists to say no?


why is it when 'people leave asshole remarks' they are always anonymous?..glad mrs b won.

Thomas said...

I agree with kimc up there that there are many ways to interpret the Bible. I add the corollary that all of those interpretations are fiction because the Bible is fiction. Or, if one is to be charitable, an rhetorically uneven and morally ambivalent amalgam work of fiction, hugely fictionalized history and mythology.

I mean, really, if one is going to pick a book and represent it as the source of all truth, at least pick a better book.

Demeters said...


It's called "projection" for a reason.


Can't wait to read the book!


Keep up the good work.

Anonymous said...

It is well known that a ‘cult’ is a religion without political influence. The idea of a ‘god’ that requires political influence is just… Well it is so bizarre that I don’t even know what it is.
Anon says “The penalty for sin is death”. Really? I have been dead three times; I am amazed that I can still type with all that sin on my shoulders. And I wonder about those xian churches destroyed in tornados, often with the devout inside crushed to, um, life.

A gentle nudge is in order to JBC for assuming Anon is a male.

This is not really Anon as it is signed KD. Anne and perhaps YDG know who I be.

Intense Guy said...

A little bit of tolerance would go a long way - especially since no one KNOWS the absolute Truth.

The Golden Rule is (nearly) universal - it is a win-win deal.