Where do you find your spirituality? Or do you?

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Where do you find your spirituality? In church, in temple, in Wiccan rituals, or just by yourself? Or have you searched for spirituality and not found it?--Al

-- Al Schroeder (al.schroeder@nashville.com), January 08, 2000


Well, I would have to say I'm still searching. I was brought up catholic but I've been questioning everything for so long that I don't consider myself one. I'm not too interested in it so it doesn't matter all that much to me. Though, wicca as you mentioned, I'm not involved in, but I find it incredibly interesting.

-- Jen (nyc@echoside.net), January 09, 2000.

I was raised a Methodist, but I never "got it." I wasn't able to open my heart to God following Methodist practices. I was unchurched from about age 15 to age 32. Then I saw an ad in the local weekly newspaper for Quakerism. I attended a "meeting" and that was it. I had found my spiritual home. More info on Quakerism can be found at http://www.quaker.org/ Quakerism was based in Christian thinking in the 1600s by a fellow named George Fox who couldn't find God through preachers, etc. The following excerpt is from a recent article in Friends Journal regarding the state of Quakerism.

"Among the many current strengths of the Religious Society of Friends, the participants talked particularly about these:

- There are distinctive Quaker teachings, especially the very real possibility of an individual, direct, and experiential relationship with God and the very real possibility of a transformed life that bears witness to that relationship.

- There are the Friends testimonies, which connect religious faith and experience with how we behave in the world: peacemaking, concern for social justice, the equality of all persons, simplicity in living, and personal integrity.

- There are distinctive Quaker practices, such as waiting expectantly in silence, simplicity in worship, the gathered meeting, conducting business in a meeting for worship, clearness committees, and all members seeing themselves as having a call to ministry.

We do have a message and a practice that we need to share with the world. This conviction came through in the consultation with even more strength that the worries that bedevil us. "There's a crying need out there for what Friends have to offer, " said one Friend, voicing the convictions of many. It is a message and a practice of experiential spirituality and transformed lives. These, in combination, form the strongest, most distinctive message Friends have to offer, the report says. This is the good news, and it is shared good news: we believe this together."

I'll end with a quote from Richard Foster's "Celebration of Discipline".... "How then do we come to believe in a world of the spirit? Is it by blind faith? Not at all. The inner reality of the spiritual world is available to all who are willing to search for it. Often I have discovered that those who so freely debunk the spiritual world have never taken ten minutes to investigate whether or not such a world really exists.

Let me suggest we take an experiential attitude toward spiritual realities. Like any other scientific endeavor, we form a hypothesis and experiment with it to see if it is true or not. If our first experiment fails, we do not despair or label the whole business fraudulent. We reexamine our procedure, perhaps adjust our hypothesis, and try again. We should at least have the honesty to persevere in this work to the same degree we would in any field of science. The fact that so many are unwilling to do so betrays not their intelligence but their prejudice."

-- Chris Hawkins (peace@clover.net), January 09, 2000.

i find my spirituality where it has always been since i became aware - - - - which is in seeing the miraculous world and marvels with my eyes. i know that most people have to have a framework or format for their religion. that is fine by me, everyone to their inclinations......... for me church and the formalities and one way thinking has alway imprisoned me. i cannot accept the time schedules advanced by organized religion nor the interpretations put on things nor feeling forced to think in a particular way. this is by no means a critical slur on those who do. one thing i can readily accept is that there are mysteries which will not be explained to me in this life, but i have faith.

-- doug (ionoi@webtv.net), January 10, 2000.

I've argued this with friends... why do people hold onto the idea of free will as if the future has yet to be written? I've seen it demonstrated in high school physics classes that the formulas of relativity that were the foundation for the first atomic bombs show that time is not linear. Depending on where you are and how fast you are traveling, that it isn't WWI, WWII, Korean war, but WWI, Korean War, WWII. I've tried explaining this to friends, but just because they don't perceive time that way, they maintain that the Creator of the Universe hasn't planned it that way.

-- Mike (mleung@mikeleung.com), January 12, 2000.

It's been pointed out to me that asking why people are compelled believe in free will implies that they have the free will to drop such a compulsion. I withdraw the question.

-- Mike (mleung@mikeleung.com), January 13, 2000.

i free willingly accept the withdrawal, not that i am compelled to but because i want to ! adieu, till next discussion mike.

-- doug (ionoi@webtv.net), January 13, 2000.

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