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Jay Tee
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Hi, I go by Jay Tee to protect the guilty (me).

 

I was raised Church of God, which is akin to the Methodists and part of the Holiness movement (not pentecostal/apostolic). Currently, I attend a Presbyterian church, mostly for the fellowship and also the choir and handbells for my musically inclined daughter.

 

I have strayed many times away from what I was taught, especially after discovering what I was taught wasn't so. Yet, some of it was so. Go figure.

 

I have studied up on various religions, know enough to know I don't know and also enough to almost sound like I know what I am talking about without actually knowing so. Go figure.

 

I really like Joseph Campbell and Carl Jung. Makes a lot of sense to me.

 

I have some issues with PC's point 2 yet I don't. I do believe that Jesus Christ (logos, the word) is the only way to Heaven. Yet, I can not imagine a loving, all-powerful, all-knowing God to create a world were he knowingly would be creating people as fuel for the fires of Hell (those before Jesus and those who never heard of Jesus as well as those who reject Jesus) when He could very well have created a world where none would go to Hell. Most of the answers I have been given ring shallow, hollow, or almost but not quite. Seems to me if God did this, He either isn't all-powerful or all-loving. My solution? Somewhere I beleive Paul says that "those who don't have the law if they live by the law show that they have the law written on their hearts" (paraphrased of course). Also, I really don't think Logos is necessarily limited to the historical Jesus of Nazareth as revealed in the Judeo-Chistian scripture.

 

My issue with that is simple: Then any and all religions are candidates for salvation. Yet, many are simply non-compatable with each other. I have no solution to that. They other issue is simply that the above observation, I feel, can be taken too far to justify anything and everything.

 

So, I think I posted somewhere before, PC seems the right path for me, for now at least. We shall see.

 

Does that make me PC? A conditional PC? or simply a prospective PC?

 

Inquiring minds want to know.

 

Namaste

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Hey there JT! I hear a few questions in there. I'll break them out as I see them.

 

1. In popular lore, there are 3 basic stances toward the relationship between Christ and “salvation.” On the far right, we have the “exclusivists” who argue that only those who (have been chosen to) say the magic words “Jesus is my Lord and Savior” are candidates for the atoning work of Christ. Everybody else burns.

 

In the middle, we have the “inclusivists” who believe that everyone is a candidate for the atoning work of Christ, even those of other religions. They believe that if “salvation” is to be found in another religion, though, then it is because it is the Holy Spirit at work in the religion to bring them in line with God's Love.

 

On the far left we have the “pluralists” who argue that God's “salvation” is for all, and that the efficacy of a religion to bring about salvation is found in the religion itself. So, a Christian is “saved” through Christianity, and a Buddhist is “saved” through Buddhism.

 

Those who identify as Progressive Christians will come from the inclusivist and the pluralist camps. Their common bond is their willingness to allow for salvation to be found outside of a Christian confession.

 

2. Regarding the non-compatibility of religions, if you look at the above descriptions, indeed you will see that even within Christianity the exclusivists and pluralists have incompatible postures and beliefs. ;)

 

For progressives, the emphasis tends to be less on unity of belief and more on a unity of an ultimate human calling, perhaps to the way of compassion, respect, and responsibility. As individuals pursue that calling, we are comfortable with allowing different people to be right in their own way.

 

3. Regarding differences, it is precisely therein that we find the opportunity to grow through dialogue. None of us has the “Answer,” but we all have our “answers.” When answers differ, then we have something fun to talk about. And through the dialogue, we come to understand our neighbors better, and by default are able to love them more.

 

4. Regarding whether PC is the right path for you, only you can decide that. As you explore what progressive Christianity seems to mean, pay special attention to the stirrings deep within. Even if you find yourself going in a different direction, hopefully your life will be enriched by this leg of your journey.

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Hello and welcome to the board Jay Tee. You're welcome here whether or not you ultimately decide that PC is for you. Like XA said, it is up to you, but I don't think labels are that important.

 

Campbell and Jung are two people I ought to definitely read more of. I have a few of Campbell's books lying around but I've hardly looked into them - not because I did not find him interesting.

 

When it comes to 'salvation' the only stance that I could hold to with honesty is that of the pluralist. My attitude can sort of be summed up in a somewhat modified version of what Jesus said: "religion was made for man, not man for religion." For a while I deeply troubled myself with trying to believe things that deep down didn't make sense to me, and though I could always find or conjure up some way to justify this or that, in the end it always felt unsatisfactory, post hoc, or like special pleading.

 

Then, disillusioned, I just stepped away from my faith and considered myself an agnostic (which to some extent I still am). All this searching only intensified my interest in the study of religion. Soon I found that, once I stopped trying to make my faith say or be something which for me it was not nor could be, it seemed to flower with unexpected meaning, which I am still just beginning to explore.

 

Peace to you,

Mike

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Welcome, Jay Tee! The great thing about this place is you don't have to be anybody but who you are, while allowing others the same freedom. Looking forward to hearing more from you!

Edited by billmc
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Hi Jay Tee,

 

I just noticed your last question in your introduction post.

 

I think you will find that is not a mission of TCPC or in the 8 points in TCPC to convert anyone or even take on a label of PC. Our mission is more to provide support and encouragement to each other. We are in a sense an Internet community reaching out to those for whom organized religion has proved ineffectual, irrelevant, or repressive, as well as to those who have given up on or are unacquainted with it. Part of our mission statement is to support those who embrace the search, not certainty.

 

The organization that pays the costs of this board is located at www.tcpc.org where people can sign up as contacts and donate if they wish. There is NO requirement to join or is your money being solicited by my mention of this.

 

You are free to be yourself and feel free to share your beliefs without being told what they should or shouldn't be. If and when you should decide that you agree in principle with the 8 points you can then post in the dedicated area for PC's only. Otherwise feel free to use the other areas to post. Being patient, respectful and tolerant of others are virtues that carry more weight here than intellectual knowledge or the need to be right or make another wrong. What you call yourself is up to you. There are no membership dues, collections or a physical organization to join. You are by participation here a member of this mixed unique community of people and I'm certain you will find others with similar journeys and much in common.

 

I hope your participation here will be of great benefit to you and likewise mutual benefit to others.

 

In your service,

JosephM(as TCPC Moderator/Admin)

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