Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Yule Be Home for Christmas?

Merry Meet Friends, Followers and Lurkers!

So, last night we decorated our Yule/Christmas tree. It was a beautiful evening for it too. The snow was falling and it was just...enchanting!

I poured myself a glass of wine. Ok, that's another big whopping lie! It was actually two glasses, but hey, it's really good wine. Then, I put on Mariah Carey's Christmas CD. Yeah, yeah, I know...some of you guys HATE Mariah and probably don't consider her CD actual Christmas or Yule music. I might tend to agree, but I have a warm place in my heart for "All I Want For Christmas is You." No, it's not the wine! Wise asses! Besides, I like to dance while I decorate the tree!

Justin came downstairs as I was tweaking the decorations and with his usual cheerful sarcasm asked, "Mom, you're Pagan, why are you listening Christmas music?" Kyla came in a short while later and asked the very same question. I realized that this was going to require a little more explanation than, "because I like it."

There are people who believe that being Pagan immediately makes us either "anti-Christian" or incapable of embracing or celebrating anyone else's traditions. This is simply untrue and definitely not a misconception I wanted my children to foster! Many of us were not raised Pagan and still celebrate the traditions we grew up with.

In all my years of practice, I have met very few Pagans who actually have a problem with Christianity. Of those, their issues have nothing to do with Christianity per se, but with a few followers who can't resist repeatedly assuring us that we will be spending all eternity in some warm and toasty place and no, I don't mean the Caribbean. I will admit however, that there are those who have denounced their Christian upbringing and hold Jesus Christ personally accountable for all those things that have gone horribly wrong in their lives. While I'll not judge any one's reason for choosing a path, if one is harboring revenge in their heart, chances are that eventually, they will find dissatisfaction with Paganism as well.

"Nothing takes everything in your life and makes it all better again." Yeah, I'm paraphrasing "The Craft", but this refers to Paganism as well and most appropriately makes my point.

Kyla then asked, "well, do you believe that Jesus Christ was the Son of God?" I explained that it didn't matter whether I believed it or not, but that he believed it and convinced millions of people of it and that now, some 2000 years later, those people still have faith that he was. I told her what I believed was that there were many sons and daughters of one Universal Divine, but that Jesus Christ was one of the greatest teachers and spiritual leaders of our time. I further explained that because now is the time when many are celebrating his birth, anyone who recognizes him as such can celebrate it along with them. Anyone, of any faith, who truly understands the message that he attempted to bring to the World also knows that this is not my philosophy, but his.

"Peace on Earth"

Blessed Yule and Merry Christmas,



Carol said...

Very nicely put Tracy.

I was bought up a christian like most of us. As I grew up and went on to catholic schools the things that we were taught were the most ridiculous things, which of course, turned me totally against the church.

As for Jesus, I believe he was a great prophet that taught love.
I am certainly not against him.

But I am against the catholic church and schools and the way they treated/taught us. I hear that they are lightening up now especially after their great scandel with the priests!!

Oh well, glad I am a pagan.

Niki said...

Very well stated, Tracy! How much better the world would be if everyone would just realize that the TRUE message spoken by all religions is exactly the same. So why do people fight over the other person's choice? It's really so simple, isn't it?

Tracy said...

I think everyone should have something they believe in. I've known some who just simply can't as a result of either their own experiences or their lack thereof.

I was raised Catholic. My Aunt Mary brought me to church every Sunday hoping to provide me with Christian beliefs. I found some of the sermons moving, others terrifying, but neither was the reason I left the church. What they taught simply never resonated with me as strongly as Wicca does. That's not to say that I disagree with Christ's teachings, just that sometimes, what one learns and what they choose to teach is not always the same.

George said...

Tracy. First time at your blog. I enjoy the visit.

I too was brought up catholic and love getting high on the spiritual ceremonial messages and teachings when I was young.

I feel the church has it's meaningful purpose in the world.

Corruption of man's greed and lust for power has made the price, a heavy toll on the lives of others throughout the centuries. Popes and their councils hid behind the banners of protection of the catholic church.

What I'm leading to is, how strange that when I was into Wicca, I had notice most of the conversions were once catholics.

Now that I'm lean more to the pagan beliefs. I'd notice the same conversions.

It's where I still get those highs through meditations the spirituality of my garden, the forest and the earth's universe.

I've still celebrate the duality of christian religions and pagan and see the compatibility is acceptable.

I don't go to church but do try to take in as much as I can for all that is nature. I'm glad when those of us can be at peace with ourselves with the two.

Oh, gees! here I go spinning off into the stratosphere. SORRY..

I'm looking forward to come back for another visit....

Tracy said...

Merry Meet and Welcome George!

Thank you for allowing me to spin off into the stratosphere!

Most of the conversions I too have found to have Catholic origins. Although, I have also found quite a few from Judaism as well. I believe that when one is secure in their beliefs, they are still able to participate in those that they may have left behind and embrace the beliefs of others as well.

While I always found the rituals of the church quite lovely, I also found them a tad too solemn. As you know, most Pagans are joyful in their rites.

For me, there is nothing quite like sense of spirituality and empowerment that comes from Pagan ritual or a hike in the woods or looking out over the ocean or in the intricate beauty of a spider's web. It is the true the essence behind the phrase, "the awesome power of nature".

George, I am very happy to have met you and thank you for visiting! As you might have noticed, my rants tend to be a little...well, passionate! Don't let that deter you!

In darkness, light!