Bridging the Religious Gaps FAQ
If you need help expressing your beliefs to friends and family members who don’t accept or understand your chosen path, you’ve come to the right place. The purpose of this area is to begin bridging the gaps between traditional Christian faiths and those of the Earth and Nature based traditions. We want to stress that it’s very important to relay this information in a kind and loving way. Our goal is
to erase some of the fear and prejudice so people can see that even when they choose to walk down different paths, all are headed in the same general direction towards one ultimate destination.
The answers below don’t go into great detail, but should offer enough ‘food for thought’ to disarm anyone you feel is ‘attacking’ your beliefs. We have quite a bit of information to put in this section, but rather than make you wait until it’s all done, we’ve decided to post as we go. New information will be added
as time permits.... so please check back often!
Q. How do I respond if I’m being condemned for worshipping a feminine deity?
A. Very politely ask the person to explain the *role* of the Holy Spirit to you. This personality of God, watches over his children, protects them, comforts them, teaches them, etc., a traditionally feminine role in most every culture. What’s more, you may want to inform them that the Bible in it’s original Greek and Hebrew languages, never referred to the Holy Spirit in the masculine tense... NOT ONCE! The masculine articles, he, his, etc., were added much
later in an effort to clarify what the church ‘believed’ the scriptures were saying. If that’s not enough, there are numerous old texts, including some in the Bible, that refer to this deity in a feminine manner. I wish I had room to go into detail here... but there’s enough to fill a book. I’ll be writing more on this subject in upcoming issues of the newsletter. For now, simply suggest that *they* might want to do a little more research to verify the gender of their own God, before
being to quick to condemn yours! Personally, I don’t believe it really matters whether we see this deity as masculine or feminine. What’s important is the teachings he/she brings us. From what I’ve observed, those have a great deal in common... but that’s another topic!
Q. What can I tell someone who insists I’m "lost" without Jesus?
A. Ask them if they believe that Jesus is the Word of God. You’ll no doubt get a yes. Next, ask them to confirm that God’s Word says to love one another, give food or clothes to the poor, and forgive others, etc. These are universal teachings that most everyone believes in and attempts to follow. Finally, ask them to explain how it’s possible for a person (such as yourself) to accept and follow
what they teach is the Word of God and yet be condemned for NOT following Jesus. If Jesus IS the Word of God, wouldn’t everyone who received these words into their heart, be receiving Jesus? Although this is not likely to change the way they believe, it will give them something to think about, and it may even help ease their fears about you being a ‘lost’ soul. Of course, this only works if you follow the harm
none philosophy of the divine, and actually believe in extending a helping hand to others!
Q. What can I say to those who tell me it’s wrong to worship multiple gods, or that I’m worshipping the *wrong* god?
A. Ask them how many gods there are! They should say one... and if that’s true, how can you be worshipping the *wrong* one? In the Christian belief, God the Father is unknowable, all powerful and omnipresent, much like the One
in Wicca. The Son and Holy Spirit are considered extensions of God the Father, just as the Lord and Lady are manifestations of the universal power known as the
One. Ask why it’s OK for their God to have three aspects or personalities, and wrong for yours. Also ask them if they can prove to you that the God they worship is not the same one you do, only with different names.
Please note how we stress you ASK these questions... and not TELL them the information. By asking questions you are letting them know you want their input and not challenging their beliefs. This is VERY important if you wish to keep from fighting over the topic. As you read through the information here, you’ll find we recommend replying with questions in nearly every situation. I’ve had great
success with this method. In this case, it doesn’t really matter whether YOU believe the deities are the same or not, as we are not trying to change anyone’s beliefs. What’s important is to establish the ‘possibility’ that they are the same, in an effort to help eliminate that subject of debate. We will be publishing more on these comparisons in our newsletter, and welcome your thoughts on this subject.
Q. How do I respond to accusations that I follow Satan, when I don’t even believe he exists?
A. For SOME Christians, saying you don’t believe in Satan is almost like saying you don’t believe in evil. Of course this is not true... but since they connect the two so closely, it may be best to simply acknowledge that what they are really trying to say, is
they fear you are following an evil or wrong path. I agree that when you’re trying to live a good life and are making every effort to live by the ‘harm none’ creed, this can be quite insulting... but rather than be offended, have them clarify what they mean. In doing this, you may get the opportunity to help them understand YOUR beliefs a little better too.
For example, when you are accused of ‘following Satan’ ask the person to identify the ‘specific behavior’ that they are concerned about. You will almost always get a vague answer like ‘practicing Witchcraft’, along with a scripture that says it’s wrong. At this point, ask them to CLARIFY what the Bible means by witchcraft! There is NO scripture that defines this term. One can only assume it
must refer to casting spells on others against their will, because using spiritual powers to help people is always praised in the Bible, and NEVER condemned.
You can reassure this person you are in total agreement with them that a person should never use spells to control or harm another!
Suggest that, since the scripture is not clear as to what kind of behavior is being condemned, perhaps they should identify ‘exactly’ what it is YOU are doing that is against God’s will. If you’re following the harm none creed, they’ll most likely
have trouble identifying anything significant, and you may be able to put an end to this ‘evil’ argument!