How I found what I didn’t know I lost….

I was raised as a Catholic. Not a hard core catholic but I did the first communion thing, the catechism thing and the confirmation thing. Although at the time I did my confirmation I was regularly attending a Baptist church. Go figure. I never regularly attended the Catholic Church. My mom was raised by a strict catholic but didn’t attend church regularly as an adult. My dad converted so he could marry my mom. The story my dad tells is that when he joined the air force, they asked on the application for his religion and he could only spell Baptist. (He did better than me, I spelled it wrong here and spell check caught it!) My point is only to say that our family wasn’t hard core church goers when I was a child. They went through some of the motions but the real true devotion to Catholicism was not there. I was a little more regular at the Baptist church I attend when I was in high school, or maybe it was when I was in junior high. I started attending this church after I accepted Jesus and was looking for something more than the rituals of a Catholic Mass. It was great, the people were wonderful and willing to help me learn and grow. All wonderful!

Or maybe not. Somewhere along the way I just could not longer swallow as truth some of the things I was being told. I didn’t understand it then – but I have recently read a book that has made some that discontent a little clearer to me now. The book, The Moses Code, made mention that the God of the Old Testament and the God of the New Testament have some differences. Fire and brimstone – old, love and forgiveness – new. That made a lot of sense to me when I read it and clarified some things from my past. OK, that’s way over simplified and I’m not writing this to argue doctrine. Been there done that. I mentioned it because it brought clarity to me.

I didn’t understand this discontent back then. I only knew that it was there. I also knew I had some major problems with a couple of things. The exclusive nature of Christianity, the “my way or the highway to hell”, that bothered me. It didn’t matter that a Buddhist monk probably did more good in their lives than some Christians. Nope, not good enough. Basically that is what it comes down to – I would always be loved but because I was human and born in sin, I was doomed to fail, in some way or another. Always. I was loved and forgiven but I would always be a sinner. Never quite good enough.

Another problem. The book of Job. Don’t get me started on it and I’m sure I completely missed the whole point of the thing. I have major programs going off about that one book. BIG TIME. Old Testament – fire and brimstone. Not going to go into it here because it’s already making my temperature go up.

ANYWAYS. Problems came up that I couldn’t resolve in my head or heart so walked away. Completely. I was no longer religious. I believed in “God”, a one conscious that was guiding the universe kind of God. I just no longer believed in religion. So long, it’s been nice and it’s been real but it hasn’t been real nice! It was all good.

Fast forward to Sam Camp XII (hah! you knew that had to come in there somewhere!). I had been feeling the longing for some type of spirituality again, some thing to connect me to Spirit. I just didn’t know what. I shaped one of my goals around that. I was intrigued by the spiritual nature of Aikido so I decide to attend classes as one of my goals. It was a physical challenge (my mind still thought I was 20, body wasn’t quite there) and it was awesome but really didn’t give me what I wanted for spirituality. (Remind me and I will post the “I am” statement I wrote as part of my point B). What it did give me, what I gave myself, was permission to believe differently than I had in the past. To look and learn and CHOOSE what felt right and true to me. A complete different reality and completely different world, and completely different God/dess.

I’m on the new path now and there are still times where the old programs come out of some drawer in mind and scream “You’re going to HELL” and I thank them for their concern for me, kiss them and slam the drawer tight and lock it. The things must be expert lock pick because they keep showing up! I remind myself that it is always my choice and I no longer have to shallow the some total of anyone else’s doctrine. Only what I choose. MY choice. How cool is that!

In love and light,

Celina

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