what's your religion?

Everything else, basically.

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Postby Spots » December 2nd, 2012, 5:20 am

My question is totally different. Mike. Did you come to this from an academic point of view or was it a search for meaning in your life?



Was it an immersive experience when you decided?
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Postby Rev. Jordan T. Maxwell » December 2nd, 2012, 12:23 pm

Chuy! wrote:Fuck me, this just got interesting... Mike: This is going to sound like an insult, but it is genuine... Are movies like Thor, The Avengers, and such like a Christian watching The Ten Commandments or Left Behind? Or do you get pissed that they get it wrong... Let's go for drinks soon..


to be fair, i get a bit pissed as a Christian that Left Behind gets it "wrong." though mostly just because it's a mediocre book and a shitty movie. ;)
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Postby Mike » December 2nd, 2012, 2:15 pm

Chuy! wrote:Fuck me, this just got interesting... Mike: This is going to sound like an insult, but it is genuine... Are movies like Thor, The Avengers, and such like a Christian watching The Ten Commandments or Left Behind? Or do you get pissed that they get it wrong... Let's go for drinks soon..


The problem with any religion based movie is that the texts were written down over a thousand years ago, so nobody really knows what exactly happened in some of the events. Hollywood also makes everything more interesting in order to make a profit. (Just look at "Gladiator" - Commodus wasn't an incestuous morn of a Roman Emperor- he was an ok leader who wasn't killed in the arena but died in his bed an old man)

According to Marvel Comics the "Norse Gods" of their universe are aliens. Therefore they can take certain license with how they handle them. I'm not too fond of Thor sporting blonde hair and no beard - Thor is usually depicted in most Scandinavian art and texts as having fire-red hair and a beard. As far as Mjollnir goes - the reason Thor could lift it was because he was the strongest of all the Gods and he also wore a belt and gauntlets which enhanced his strength. None of this "Worthy" bullshit. The real Thor wouldn't be able to pick up the Marvel version of Mjollnir - He was a womanizer, he cursed, and he picked fights with the giants every chance he got.

I used to get pissed that anyone seeing me wearing my hammer of Thor used to think I was a fan of the comics and talk to me about them. ( I hate the Thor comic- he talks like a ren-faire reject and his outfit looks like it was designed by people with no interest or knowledge of the vikings. ) But now I guess the comics and the movies may inspire some folks to read about the Scandinavian people and their Gods, or maybe just research Thor, Odin, and Asgard on the web to see what the non-comic version is all about.
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Postby Mike » December 2nd, 2012, 2:36 pm

Spots wrote:My question is totally different. Mike. Did you come to this from an academic point of view or was it a search for meaning in your life?

Was it an immersive experience when you decided?


This was a result of both academic research and a need to find a religion which would make me feel fulfilled as a person.

I was raised Catholic and I hated it. I hated the fact that one man came ot earth, talked nothing but peace and love, then his followers were quick to condemn anyone who didn't fall into the restrictions of a book written by dozens of people and who was put together by texts chosen by the Vatican as they separated the "Worthy" from the "Unworthy".

The bible for me contradicts itself in a lot of ways and the fact that people take it verbatim without any question or discussion disturbed me greatly. It's supposed to be a text in order to help you understand your faith - not a book to use to ostracize folks who are different.

I never got anything out of the mass, either. I'd go for an hour each week, listen to the same passages and the same sermons and came away empty. It wasn't for me. And I was sure a man who loved everyone wouldn't throw us into hell as easily as they told us in school. (Went to Christian schools until College - that's my parent's fault)

After I turned 20 I wanted to leave Catholicism and find something, anything I could relate to. I went to the library and began researching the major religions. I started with Buddhism, then the Native American faith (I still follow this a bit as well as I have participated in rituals to find my totem animal and have attempted a couple of Vision quests no results, but I still use this as a supplement when I need to get life answers that aren't easily found with Norse rituals or prayers) I tried to look at other religions as well, but nothing really seemed to fit. Then I was reminded of my Scandinavian heritage by my parents - we had some conversation where I was told there were ancestors in Scandinavia and I looked into the religions there. I found the Old Norse/Germanic Paganism sites on the web (there were few at the time) but I also knew of a few book stores in Manhattan who served the Pagan community. I bought a couple of 'beginner' books about the Norse faith - mostly history and prayer books- and after reading them I knew I would fit in this faith. I took books about Norse Mythology and culture out of the library and read all I could to learn about the people and the culture as well as their religion. I felt that if I was going to adopt the religion I should know as much about the people and their culture and language as possible ( I am still trying to learn Norwegian, and I can read and write in the Elder Futhark {runes} )

So yes, it was a very immersive experience for me as I tried to become a viking rather than just toss on a Mjollnir pendant and pretend I'm one of the faithful.

I was 'baptized' in 1992 when I renounced my ties to Christianity and accepted the Norse Gods as my faith in a private ceremony. In 1997 I renewed these vows among those of the same faith, and I have never been happier. I can't say that this journey has been perfect for me - but any relationship with one's faith can be a rocky one from time to time.
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Postby LisaJackson » December 3rd, 2012, 12:43 am

I like to say I'm as close as you get to atheist without being atheist. I don't believe there's proof of no god so that means I'm not atheist but I strongly feel there isn't one. More importantly, I don't care if there's one or not. I find no need to believe.

That being said, I adore religious mythology in a scholarly sense and I used to attend church services even though I don't believe a god exists. I love love love church architecture, love being inside churches, love hangin with people in churches and listening to sermons. When I visit other countries one of the first things I want to do is visit their churches. I love what religions are.
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Postby happywaffle » December 3rd, 2012, 9:33 am

Mike wrote:the squirrel Ratatosk ("swift teeth"), a notorious gossip


Got my Halloween costume for next year all lined up. (No offense of course)
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Postby happywaffle » December 3rd, 2012, 9:34 am

Spots wrote:My friend Dustan is a New Orleans actor and TNM student. He was talking about struggling with atheism. What happens after death?


"Then I realized that life is like an improv scene. In an improv scene you're not caught up in what happens after the scene. The moment exists for that moment."


I felt that was profound & beautiful. Perhaps our next improv scene together will be a celebration of life itself.


That's super awesome.
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