Freedom of Religion

We were all taught in school that our forefathers left England to escape religious dictatorships. Okay, there was a lot more to it then that, but it was a big enough deal that they made sure it got honorable mention in our rulebook. They clearly made the point that we were to have freedom of religion here in America. They also used the word "God" in some of their formal paperwork and even on our money. I don't want to argue politics here, but rather semantics. They didn't say "freedom of Christianity," they said "freedom of religion." The boys who wrote up all of our formal paperwork were wordsmiths and they debated long and hard to find the perfect set of words to govern ourselves by. It wasn't decided that we had the freedom to choose whichever form of Christianity that we liked, but whichever form of religion. Religion is in and of itself a much broader concept then Christianity. "God" can mean a lot more then just the Christian definition too.

No, I don't agree with all the bickering and arguing over whether or not there should be prayers in school or if the Pledge of Allegiance is constitutional. You can't stop someone from praying whenever or wherever they choose. Nor can you force a prayer out of someone either. It's a dumb thing to argue about and not worth being offended over either way. I think it's important to teach out children what our country's Pledge of Allegiance is, but I don't know that it's right to force anyone to state a pledge, especially children. Seems a bit dictator like and kind of like brainwashing. Teach them what it means. Teach them what prayer means. Teach them what making a pledge of any kind means whether it's a pledge of one's allegiance to their country's flag, a pledge of fidelity to a spouse, or a pledge of loyalty to a boss. But also teach them that in this country we have the freedom to make pledges or not. Teach them that in this country we have the freedom to pray to whoever or whatever we like and the freedom not to pray. Teach them just how important that freedom is.

I'm saddened when I hear of Pagan's being persecuted for their spiritual beliefs in this country. Did the Sunday school teachers forget to mention that using the colors green and red for Christmas is Pagan? Did they mention that Christmas lights, yule logs, and wreaths are all Pagan? Did they mention that almost every single Christian holiday is celebrated ironically on top of a Pagan festival? Why do you think we have bunnies, baby chicks, and pretty flowers as part of our Easter celebration? Because it coincides with the Pagan's celebrations of Spring's renewal. From what I can see, Pagans aren't all evil ugly witches anymore than all Christians are white supremacists.

I don't have a deep knowledge of all of the different religions of the world, but I can tell you that it doesn't take much research to see that they're all very much the same. Get past which church uses which secret handshake and which rule book you should follow, and you find that they're all teaching us to respect each other, to love each other, to conduct yourself with honor, and to be good to the planet and animals that we're blessed with. The rest is all dogma and debatable. Nobody has any real concrete proof that their particular form of God is the only one. Who's to say that God or Jesus isn't wise enough to visit more than once using different names and different forms? Wouldn't it make sense given the size of the planet that the rest of the world would need to be given a fair chance at knowing about God too? Is Buddha so very different from Jesus? Their teachings are incredibly similar. Why limit God to a concept that only fits what your particular culture or region of the world knows about?

Another thing that always puzzled me is why prophets and seers are allowed to channel holy books and tell of the Messiah's coming, but then we're told by the churches that being psychic is demonic? It seems a bit contradictory to me. Every psychic I've ever met lost power over their visions if they weren't acting in the highest good. Most of the psychics I've met believe very deeply in a form of God or some sort of a higher magical loving guidance over us. They're visions into the other side created that belief. There's nothing quite like chatting with the All-Mighty to make a believer out of you. Isn't prayer in and of itself a form of telepathic psychic connection with the other side?

It just seems to me that if we quit arguing over what words, labels, and names we give these concepts and quit arguing over methods of prayer and such that we'd see that we're all so much more alike then we are different. I've known three different Catholic men who fell in love with the Buddhist faith because it so beautifully highlights the teachings of Christ. I really believe that is what we're meant to do. All of the holy books tell us to love one another. You can't truly love someone if you don't take the time to really get to know them and what they stand for. Shouldn't we learn about each other from a place of love rather than from a place of judgement? Nobody can prove that anyone else's religion is wrong and nobody can prove that theirs is right. Too many translators over the course of history to be able to be 100% sure about anything any more. We can't really assume that the others are completely wrong and we can't assume that our own religion is completely right. Religion and God is so much more than we can fully understand at this time.

Copyright 2004, Skye Thomas, Tomorrow's Edge

About The Author

Skye Thomas is the CEO of Tomorrow's Edge, an Internet leader in inspiring leaps of faith. She became a writer in 1999 after twenty years of studying spirituality, metaphysics, astrology, personal growth, motivation, soulmates, and parenting. Her books and articles have inspired people of all ages and faiths to recommit themselves to the pursuit of happiness. After years of high heels and business clothes, she is currently enjoying working from home in her pajamas. To read more of her articles, sign up to receive her free weekly newsletter, and get free previews of her books go to http://www.TomorrowsEdge.net.

[email protected]

In The News:

Religion binds people culturally across geographic borders  The London School of Economics and Political Science
Religion in India: Tolerance and Segregation | Pew Research Center  Pew Research Center's Religion and Public Life Project

L. Ron Hubbard, Jr. Blows the Whistle

L. Ron Hubbard, Jr. Blows the WhistleWhen L. Ron Hubbard... Read More

Keep on Singing

The prisoners of Sing Sing, one of the most repressive,... Read More

Slain in the Spirit?

WHAT'S HAPPENING HERE?A Catholic woman reported to me that a... Read More

Behold: The Prince of Persia. . . the War in Iran has begun!

DÉJÀ VU (Where have I heard this before?)(Note: May I... Read More

The Dangers of Harry Potter

The Harry Potter book has just been released in the... Read More

Gods Providence in a Jericho Journal

What if excavators uncovering ancient Jericho found the following journal?Monday:... Read More

The Spreading of the Not-So-Good News

PART 1: Another Gospel?The influence of the occult upon our... Read More

Homo-sexuality and Christianity

Romans 1:16-1:32. Can there be a compromise between the two:... Read More

DNA RNA are you ready for what is next?

As the human race maps out the genome and unlocks... Read More

The Christmas Victory

As the Chritmas season approaches, I figured it's a good... Read More

Why Doesnt God Answer My Prayers?

I heard a story about a girl who wrote to... Read More

Money And Religion: How Christians Are Being Misled

Today's Christian Evangelists, Teachers, and Preachers Are Grossly Misleading America... Read More

Seeking after the Knowledge of God

As you will see in the Scripture verses I will... Read More

Water Into Wine: The Meaning of Jesus First Miracle

The second chapter of John's Gospel offers a most interesting... Read More

Jesus Our King: Priest Forever After The Order Of Melchizedek

Much confusion surrounds the person of one "Melchizedek" found in... Read More

Resurrection Faith (Part 3)

During His ministry, Jesus often made references to His impending... Read More

Biblical Hermeneutics ? Part 1

Hermeneutics is the science and art of the interpretive process... Read More

The Goodness of His Strength

The dictionary explains strength as being endurance, force, bravery, spirit... Read More

Tsunami: Where was God?

The powerful tsunami that on Dec. 26, 2004, hit the... Read More

Being In-Between Religions

Who said religion has to last a lifetime?When I was... Read More

The 7 Seal Judgements

These next 3 articles are going to be extremely HARD... Read More

In Divers Places

Isaiah 65:17-65:25In Divers Places. A Look at prophecy and today's... Read More

Do You Have Disciples?

Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men."... Read More

Biblically Speaking of Evil and National Security

We have been learning to think Biblically and speak Scripturally... Read More

Crucification

Most of know how Jesus was crucified. Do we ever... Read More