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“In seed time learn, in harvest teach, in winter enjoy.” ~ William Blake **** “But like of each thing that in season grows.” ~ William Shakespeare **** “For him in vain the envious seasons roll, Who bears eternal summer in his soul.” ~ Oliver Wendell Holmes

How Do You Imagine God?
God in America and USA WEEKEND Magazine are partnering to explore Americans' images of God.

How do you imagine God? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator I imagine God as a Universal energy source. For us on Earth, our blessings begin with the presence of life on earth (otherwise, none of us would be here). I believe that this Universal energy can be seen in every aspect of the world around us (as well as in and around each of us). Honoring seasons and nature itself is just one aspect of how I choose to be grateful for all of my blessings in life.
1 person liked this

My Beliefs

I believe ... your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator Nature is sacred, and we are all a part of that sacred nature. I also have strong beliefs in metaphysics and how everything is connected through energy. 1 person liked this
My most powerful moment of belief was ... your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator Because I also believe strongly in metaphysics, and our connection to All-That-Is through energy, when I felt the energy of a passed loved one literally hug my arms, I knew something very special was going on and that life is so much more than we can perceive with our 5 senses. 1 person liked this
My greatest moment of doubt was ... your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator I have never doubted that there is more to the Universe than what we can perceive, and I never doubted that divine presence. The only doubts I have had are in the ways that man can sometimes use their ideas about the divine to control, guilt, harm and intimidate others. 1 person liked this
My spiritual life means... your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator When I focus on spirituality, and our connection to the divine, I am more at peace in my life. I treat others more gently and I take better care of the world and people around me. It is important to me that I live in such a way that my daily life and my ideas of spirituality align as much as possible. This is always a goal for me. 2 people liked this
The biggest misconception about my faith/belief system is ... your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator People think that Pagans (I'll define here as: those who consider themselves to be a part of a group of earth-based beliefs) are satan worshippers. One crede of pagans is to harm none, and by that very crede alone it would be easy to see that we would not worship an entity that harms others. Also, another misconception is that we do not believe in Jesus (or other religious figures). In fact, some pagans DO, and many at least have respect for those figures. 3 people liked this
My spiritual role model is ... your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator The Dalai Lama has been one of many spiritual role models that I have. Although I am not Budhist, I appreciate his ideas about peace and living gently in the world. 1 person liked this
The tenet/practice/teaching I appreciate most about my faith is ... your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator Harm none. This is so very important to me. I feel that if everyone followed this, there would be much more peace in the world. I believe this "harm none" idea extends not just to physical harm, but also mental and spiritual harm. Let others live in peace. 3 people liked this

My Faith History

As a child I believed ... your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator I believed that God whispered to me from the trees or simply into my ear. I felt most connected to God in nature. 2 people liked this
My spiritual journey has been ... your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator a slow but wonderful journey. I am always reading, studying and pondering life and all of its wonders and complexities. 2 people liked this
I was raised as ... your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator a Catholic. My mom was divorced, and then shunned from our local church, so we stopped going. That's when I realized I wanted to be a part of something where love and acceptance were the rule. 2 people liked this
Are your beliefs or practices different from your parents? If so, how and why? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator Yes. I would say my parents remained Christians in a more traditional sense. I believe in and honor Jesus, but have moved more toward the world around us that Jesus loved so much, the world that sustains life and from which our blessings manifest the most profoundly.
If you have children, did becoming a parent change your relationship to faith? If so, how? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator I would say that I have always been drawn to honor the cycles of nature. Having children actually probably enhanced my faith, because I was even more able to see nature through the eyes of a child. The sense of wonder and awe that children have is the way I want to look at the world around me as well. 1 person liked this

How I Practice My Faith

Where and when do you practice your faith? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator I practice my faith both inside and outside, but mostly outside. I do have a hutch in my kitchen that is my altar. I put seasonal items on there (fall leaves, summer shells, spring dried flowers, winter berries, etc) along with whatever seems important for that moment (a found stone, feather, or pic of a passed loved one, small statue, etc). I love to commune with nature, as well as attend outdoor ceremonies, bonfires and such whenever I can. 1 person liked this
Does your family practice more than one religion or faith? If so, how do you blend the traditions? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator My immediate family (spouse and children) basically follow a similar belief and way of life, but my greater family does not follow my path. I do still honor the family traditions such as Christmas and Easter with them, because it is the energy of love that is important. 1 person liked this
How easy or difficult is it to live your faith? Why? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator It is difficult in that I cannot always be entirely open about my beliefs or lifestyle with everyone. If you are not in a "mainstream" religion or attend a church, then it sometimes offends people or they fear you in the sense that you might somehow teach their children something "evil" if their children knew you didn't follow a mainstream religion. 1 person liked this
In my house, the thing that most represents my faith is ... your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator My kitchen hutch altar. I keep many things on it that represent what is important to me, like items from nature, crystals, small statues, representation of gaia and the greenman, etc.
The song/book/film that most represents my faith is ... your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator I'll have to think about this one.....

Religion & the Public Square

What should be the role of religion in politics? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator Religion should not be a part of politics. I think one can have a code of ethics without tying religion into it.
Should courses about religion be taught in public schools? Why or why not? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator I think it's fine so long as many different kinds of belief systems are introduced
Should the Bible, Torah, Quran or other religious texts be taught as works of literature in public schools? Why or why not? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator If someone is in a religious school, then naturally the sacred books of their faith should be taught in their school. Otherwise, I think religious texts could be used as literature if students choose it. In other words, students could study the text of their choice and perhaps then break off into groups with other students who have also chosen the same book to study.
Is interfaith dialogue important? Why or why not? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator Absolutely! How else can we as a society hope for religious tolerance and world peace if people cannot learn how to dialogue with others of different belief systems? 1 person liked this
Do you feel comfortable discussing your faith with others? Why/why not? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator Yes I do, so long as I can speak with people who are able to be respectful with me, just as I would be with them. 2 people liked this
Do you feel that you have a duty, because of your faith, to put your beliefs into action? What are some of those actions? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator Yes, I do. I feel that honoring nature is extremely important, especially in this era where mankind has abused our planet so badly. I also believe we have forgotten the art of gratitude. Being grateful for the harvest (for example) allows us to stop for a moment and remember where our food comes from. When we are mindful of things like the harvest, we are more apt to treat the land, and each other, better. 1 person liked this
Are religious beliefs compromised by engaging in politics? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator I don't believe so. If I ran for office, I would bring my love of nature and the natural world with me. I would act on 'An it harm none' daily. I would be aware of the cyclical nature of everything, and work my politics from that vantage point. 1 person liked this
Has 9/11 had any impact on your thoughts about religion? Are you more/less interested in learning about other religions? Do you feel more/less comfortable expressing your religious beliefs? your photo/ link/ video has been held for approval by a moderator Wow. 9/11 impacted me on so many levels. It made me realize just how important religious tolerance is. 'An it harm none' is SO important to me, and it is too bad that those individuals clearly did not hold it close to their hearts. I am a little less apt to talk to people about my beliefs due to the strong atmosphere of intolerance. I admit I am afraid of people trying to harm me because I do not believe as they do.

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Published October 11, 2010

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