Mattyd1000

Hello, My Name Is Matty

10 posts in this topic

Hello,

 

I've been struggling with my faith in the recent months and feel so far away from the Trinity. It is a very complicated issue, but I will outline it here, briefly:

 

- Ethnically Jewish

- Raised Roman Catholic

- Went to Catholic schools from grades 1-12

- Militant Atheist from 14-28 years old

- At 28, had a revelation from God

- Accepted the concept of God, but did not embrace church nor Christianity

- Pagan/Odinist for a few years

- Converted to Christianity approximately 3-4 years ago

 

Last Summer, I felt closest to God/Trinity/Mary I have ever felt. It was beautiful.

 

In recent months, while observing the actions and words of American "Christians" (Evangelical Protestants and Right-Wing Catholics), I have abandoned the Church.

 

But, I still pray to/speak to the Trinity and Mary.

 

I am going through a spiritual crisis and joined this site as it is the closest I can find to my own status: Left-leaning, Socialist.

 

I have no interest what-so-ever in attending a physical church-- I am convinced it is filled to the brim with Pharisees.

 

In fact, I question why I ever converted to Christianity in the first place; I am ashamed that I did in many ways.

 

If I were to align with an actual church, it would be the Roman Catholic Church (as I consider it the only true Church, although it is also ripe with major issues. I will admit, I am highly-biased against Protestantism, although it is Protestantism that led me to Christ. I know, that is very contradictory.)

 

But, those Earthly divisions are not important; Christ can speak through all believers and does so.

 

I am battling with my faith and which direction to go (Also, please note: I will admit, I've never accepted that Jesus is actually "God", only part of God and sent from God. I see him as teacher/Rabbi, enlightened, and a revolutionary.)

 

Thank you in advance for any guidance you may share with me.

 

Matty.

 

 

 

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Hi Matty. You have had quite the spiritual journey.

 

What is it you presently believe about the Trinity, God and Mary?

 

Perhaps that could be the starting point to a discussion.

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Hi Mattty. You have had quite the spiritual journey.

 

What is it you presently believe about the Trinity, God and Mary?

 

Perhaps that could be the starting point to a discussion.

 

thormas,

 

Thank you for your reply.

 

That is a vast question, but I will begin to chip away at it here:

 

I see God, the Father, as the creator of the universe via the Big Bang, his design for evolution part of the design. But, although I say "Father", that is merely a cultural concept and nomenclature; God is a he/she/it, a metaphysical, energy source, not a humanoid being in any way.

 

I see Jesus as his son, from him, but not him, literally. I do not believe I have to sign-on with in any certain religion (or specific dogma within a denomination) to be "saved"; it is much more complex than that in my view and metaphysical. In many ways I consider all religions simply extensions and tribal creations of Homo Sapiens, created, and relative to each culture. They all hold general revelations, but none hold an absolute path.

 

The Holy Spirit is a 'ghost" in a sense, disembodied-- but so is the Father. The Holy Spirit is hard to understand and put into words-- in some ways, it is the literal energy that bridges, God, Jesus, and Man/Woman. Yet, it seems to have an actual intelligence, something normal energy (such as an electron) lacks.

 

Mother Mary is special to me; it is due to my cultural background.

 

I do not pray to her-- she is not a deity, but merely the spirit of a very pure, special woman, Jesus' mother.

 

I know she cares for me and I relate to her more than I do to Jesus, honestly.

 

Some people have said to me that the concept of her as immortal/special, etc comes directly from the ancient worship of Aphrodite/Venus. In some ways, that may be true. But, I'm fine with that as an ex-Pagan who worshiped Freya, the Odinic goddess.

 

Yes, I am confused but am trying to understand more clearly and learn the real truth (whatever that may be.)

 

Please feel free to ask me any questions you may wish.

 

Kind regards.

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Hi Matty,

 

You are not alone in your journey and in much of your present understanding. I share a similar belief concerning the person of Jesus...... aren't we all equally part of the whole in that if one part is God then then all parts are God. How can any that have life be separate from the One Life that which gives each life?

 

Welcome to the forum ,

Joseph

 

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Matty,

 

Thanks for the answers. I grew up Catholic, discovered philosophy (metaphysics) in college, then had the opportunity to teach and study theology. Although I consider myself a Christian, I belong to no particular Church simply because they preach what is for me an 'old time religion' that no longer speaks to me, no longer does it for me. And, from my point of view, I think you have a good understanding. I basically agree with you on God and add, that, again for me, we live and have our being in God/Being. Or to flip it: God is the transcendent presence immanent in and throughout creation. So God, for me, is not only the one time creator/source; God is the continual Presence -creating and empowering us to Be.

 

I understand Jesus to be human, 'like us in all ways' but one who 'incarnated' Love(God) and thus became fully Human by being Divine(Love). This is the Way.

 

The Holy Spirit is one I don't dwell on much but, if I do, the Spirit is simply Love that must be made flesh in us and thus empowers us to become truly Human Beings, the sons and daughters of the Father.

So for me, the Trinity are the modes of God, the ways in which (from our perspective) God is present to give Life: Source, Alpha & Omega; the Word, always only heard through creation, through humanity, that calls, challenges, judges us to higher expression of being/Love; and, the Spirit, the love, only and always given through creation, through humanity, giving us the courage to move forward, to become More. But all are the One God. I no longer call them persons especially since this can cause confusion given what modern people understand as a person.

 

Mary, is frankly one I don't think about much but I agree with you. And I certainly don't accept the Catholic understanding of her immaculate conception or assumption into heaven. Quite simply and wonderfully, she was a mother and her son stands on her shoulders and the shoulder of the Jews who came before him to become 'the son of God'

 

From my perspective, you don't seem confused. But I can understand you are not settled yet and still searching for a fuller understanding - as are we all.

 

My suggestion is to read and then read some more. There are amazing writers who have taken Christianity and struggled to talk about it in ways that would resonate with people of today. You might have your own list but let me know if you want suggestions.

 

tom

Edited by thormas
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Posted (edited)

 

Hi Matty,

 

You are not alone in your journey and in much of your present understanding. I share a similar belief concerning the person of Jesus...... aren't we all equally part of the whole in that if one part is God then then all parts are God. How can any that have life be separate from the One Life that which gives each life?

 

Welcome to the forum ,

Joseph

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thank you for your welcome, Joseph.

Edited by Mattyd1000
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Posted (edited)

Matty,

 

Thanks for the answers. I grew up Catholic, discovered philosophy (metaphysics) in college, then had the opportunity to teach and study theology. Although I consider myself a Christian, I belong to no particular Church simply because they preach what is for me an 'old time religion' that no longer speaks to me, no longer does it for me. And, from my point of view, I think you have a good understanding. I basically agree with you on God and add, that, again for me, we live and have our being in God/Being. Or to flip it: God is the transcendent presence immanent in and throughout creation. So God, for me, is not only the one time creator/source; God is the continual Presence -creating and empowering us to Be.

 

I understand Jesus to be human, 'like us in all ways' but one who 'incarnated' Love(God) and thus became fully Human by being Divine(Love). This is the Way.

 

The Holy Spirit is one I don't dwell on much but, if I do, the Spirit is simply Love that must be made flesh in us and thus empowers us to become truly Human Beings, the sons and daughters of the Father.

So for me, the Trinity are the modes of God, the ways in which (from our perspective) God is present to give Life: Source, Alpha & Omega; the Word, always only heard through creation, through humanity, that calls, challenges, judges us to higher expression of being/Love; and, the Spirit, the love, only and always given through creation, through humanity, giving us the courage to move forward, to become More. But all are the One God. I no longer call them persons especially since this can cause confusion given what modern people understand as a person.

 

Mary, is frankly one I don't think about much but I agree with you. And I certainly don't accept the Catholic understanding of her immaculate conception or assumption into heaven. Quite simply and wonderfully, she was a mother and her son stands on her shoulders and the shoulder of the Jews who came before him to become 'the son of God'

 

From my perspective, you don't seem confused. But I can understand you are not settled yet and still searching for a fuller understanding - as are we all.

 

My suggestion is to read and then read some more. There are amazing writers who have taken Christianity and struggled to talk about it in ways that would resonate with people of today. You might have your own list but let me know if you want suggestions.

 

tom

 

tom,

 

Yes, please share some of your reading suggestions if you would.

 

I will reply more to your thoughts soon concerning this topic.

 

I appreciate you taking the time to reply to me and sharing your views/thoughts/beliefs.

 

-Matthew

Edited by Mattyd1000
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Posted (edited)

 

Yes, please share some of your reading suggestions if you would.

 

-Matthew

 

Matthew,

 

Let me start with three: Gregory Baum's 'Man Becoming' (the first theology book I ever read and still powerful - still the best 'description' of the Trinity and the Immanent God. Probably out of print but can be found). Dale Allison's 'The Historical Christ and the Theological Jesus' (a well respected biblical scholar yet different from many) and John Hick's 'The Metaphor of God Incarnate' (also check the Hick website: http://www.johnhick.org.uk/jsite/index.php). This guy was insightful and bold in his presentations. See his website for the article on reincarnation.

 

Hick and Baum did a great job re-presenting an understanding of God for today's world.

 

I used Baum's book as the text when I taught Christian Anthropology to H.S, seniors in the 80s (high school kids reading what could be a college or a graduate level work and it 'spoke' to them).

Edited by thormas
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Matty,

 

Welcome to the forum. It sounds like you have a fair bit on your plate trying to determine what you do or don't / should or shouldn't, believe.

 

It's a journey many of us have undertaken with varying outcomes for all, so you're not alone and never will be.

 

Wherever the journey takes you, just know to keep breathing - it will all work out in the end.

 

Cheers

Paul

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Matty welcome and it is great you are following your path zig zaging with Christian symbols or not doesn't matter. I am a Christian and what turns people off is that many are certain of Christianity, but do not live it, which is not being honest and it is careless because even if we lie to our self, our soul knows the truth. To make our vision clear, we have to be true to our self by being honest with our self, and we can do this I feel by respecting the truth, living the truth and telling the truth, which comes with honesty and you seem to have those qualities, I respect that so I can only say quiet the mind and relax into your consciousness,who you really are. Your mind being a magic eight ball will let the truth rise to the top when suspended from survival.

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