I didn’t like having to delete one of the comments to my post of last week, as I don’t like censorship at all. However, as this space is my own spiritual journal where I record my own thoughts and spiritual journey I felt that someone posting the Christian gospel, asking me to walk a different path and stating that the Christian way was the only way, was not only disrespectful and rude, it was also insulting.
People who have journeyed with me over some time will know, from the posts I have made over the years, that I once was Christian. I was raised in an evangelical/charismatic Christian family and even went to Bible College. I know the Christian gospel as well as anyone. I have also chosen to reject it.
I’m making this the theme of my post this week for a reason, and the reason is this: I don’t believe anyone holds the key to absolute truth. I also don’t believe that any of us have a right to criticise the spiritual path of another. I cringe in horror and embarrassment when I look back at my life and think of the times when I have ‘preached the gospel’ at people, instead of respecting them, their journey and where they happen to be in terms of their journey. I really wish I could go back and apologise to each and every one of those people. This kind of attitude shows no respect for individual intelligence and neither does it respect people as individuals. It also shows an utter disregard for the integrity of others. It is this kind of fundamentalism that has caused our world to enter into many dubious and dangerous moments in recent and not so recent history.
Who am I to tell another what they should believe and who am I to tell another what they believe?
My spiritual journey has shown me that my body is a shell, it’s a tent, and it’s something in which I am choosing to live at this moment in time. My body is not me. My body simply houses that part of me that is before name and form, that part of me that is part of Source, part of The All. My soul is on an evolutionary journey and at this moment in time it lives within this body. No one can criticise where my soul is at today as it is where it is meant to be! By the same token, who am I to criticise you, your journey or where your soul is at today, for the very same reason. We will travel on our respective journeys until we have leaned and experienced what it is we needed until we rejoin Source and become at one with the One Divine Life. We make our own journey and we follow our own path and each is valid, each is special and precious and each deserves respect and honour.
I am not one of those pagans who hate Christians. I don’t understand people who dislike the followers of other paths so vehemently. I just don’t get that. I have reason to dislike the Christian path for so many reasons, but suffice to say that for me it was too restrictive and for me if did not value difference and diversity enough. The Christian doctrine to me was little short of a clone making factory and I found it to be something of a suffocating and claustrophobic experience and one that I have no desire to repeat. But this was my experience and for others who feel this is their way, I wish them well and I wish them blessings. I simply ask that they wish me the same.
I have no doubt that I am on the right path for me in this incarnation. Some people have wished me well on my ‘new path’ as some may perceive my recent draw to the Western Way as a new path. To me it isn’t a new path at all, rather a step along the path that I have always been walking. Where I have been informs where I am now, and there is no contradiction. I am simply placing my feel on the path that opens up before me.
And this brings me to where I am today. The comments made on my previous post were so very helpful as they have helped me to see the very real connection, or should I say, relationship, between my thoughts around ancestors and others thoughts around ‘the spirit of place.’ What I have seen is that there is indeed a relationship between the two.
I know that the wisdom, knowledge, experience, creativity and insight of my forebears reverberates within my very DNA. Their very being is present in the cells of my body. At the same time, the land they have walked has been invested with their energy through their spiritual practice as well as their everyday life and therefore the land also reverberates with this self same energy. Ancestors and land coming together.
And with this is the spirit of place. My forebears called to the elements, they called to their Gods, and as they were called, so the Gods responded. Someone once said that the more a God is called the more powerful in terms of energy and presence the God becomes. I don’t know what I think about that, but I can see that as a people call to the One Divine Life in the way that has been revealed to them, so this Deity forms part of the Group or Folk Soul.
As I walk the land I am beginning to sense all this in new and powerful ways. It is bringing a new sensitivity to the spirit of place and I can sense the energy of both those who have walked before and the Spirits of that place. The Gods have not deserted that space just because they are not called so frequently.
So the wisdom and mystery of my forebears, the land upon which I walk, and the Deities of that place lies before me. I just need to learn how to truly connect in such a way that I receive this wisdom.
I guess that is something of a lifetime journey!