02-07-2010, 04:29 PM
I have issues with organized religions(as in--go to church, give money, etc etc). I feel the entire process is meant to enslave people mentally, either through loyalty to an individual(such as the Pope) or an institution, which never was the purpose of these religions. There is more of a focus there on being loyal to earthly things than there is in savoring the lessons that should be learned from religious texts. Also, I feel many religious institutions don't really represent the religion. I think its a place for people to gather together, gossip about each other, and pretend they are sorry for not obeying the laws of their religion(after which, they don't change a thing and go break more rules). I feel very bitterly that the entire process is corrupt and does not at all go to the underlying messages in many of these religions.
Now, as for religion itself, I consider myself a Universalist, in a sense. I believe all religions have the same basic underlying messages and it is these messages that I try to adhere to. I have no problem with identifying with any religion since I feel I am obeying their laws, even if I am not in the strictest sense a "Muslim" or a "Christian"(which, goes a step further since I don't believe Jesus is the savior; just a very wise man). I can't adhere to holy books, which I feel have been tainted by the desires of humans(for example, The Bible's apparent condemnation of being g.ay, which can be argued against and really has come up over a translation dispute), but I think those holy books still contain the basic messages, they just have to be ferreted out.
I believe there is a God and a Goddess(taking many forms throughout different religions) and that they would prefer us to love each other and to be giving and kind and respectful of their creation than cruel and warlike. I believe the Earth is to be cherished. I also believe in intelligent design--as in they placed the beginnings here, then allowed us to grow on our own. I do not believe in sins or Hell. I do believe in reincarnation until we reach spiritual perfection and have learned from all of our mistakes.