Monday, April 25, 2011

Respecting Each Other's Paths...A Rant

Tolerance is understanding.  It is open to new light.
Those who are tolerant are always eager to explore viewpoints other than their own.--Wilferd A. Peterson

The other day I posted a harmless little piece about how Easter was for me when I was a little girl; it wasn't meant to materialistic in any way.  In essence, it was about the long-time tradition of Easter outfits and had nothing at all to do with religion. It was about a time, long, long ago, an innocent little memory that I chose to share, a simple remembrance of my childhood.  Yet, someone chose to twist what I had written and decided that they should pray for me because my priorities aren't straight.  In other words, he/she was instructing me that church is not for socialization and looking at others pretty clothes, and basically, I should be ashamed.  This post had nothing to do with church and religion; indeed, it was more about the changes that occur over time....

...but this just goes to show you how far intolerance will go.  Before I begin, I'd like to clarify something.  I do not talk religion on my blog or elsewhere. I have no need to because I respect everyone else's viewpoints.  Several years ago, when  I chose to become an ordained minister, my choice was Interfaith because I believe that there is good in all.  I believe in tolerance.  And, during my studies of other religions, as well as Paganism, I found that the core values or the essential teachings of all these religions are remarkably similar.  The single most common theme amongst all the great religions of the world is tolerance and love for others.  

We live in an age where we are supposed to be tolerant, not only of other faiths, but of others in general; yet, when you look around all you see is a lot of fighting and protesting. Where is the tolerance?  Sadly, more often than not, others feel it necessary to impose their faith onto others by trying to make others that do not share their views feel less worthy just that person tried to do to me.  They tell others  that they have to conform to their beliefs, principles and accept that you are a sinner and need to ask forgiveness. 

As I see it, the problem is that everyone seems to expect everyone else to be tolerant of their values and beliefs, yet they don't think they have to be tolerant back. Maybe this is because they truly believe they are right, and it's a hard for them to accept anything that goes against their  belief.  But just imagine how beautiful religion could be if  Christians, Pagans, Muslims, Jews, or any one of a plethora of religious groups can join together to take care of families in need, to organize food drives.

In my opinion, respect means allowing another person the right to be who they are and believe what they want to believe without interfering or condemning. And that goes for blogging as well. These are our little havens, our space where we feel safe to post about whatever we may.  We welcome comments, but we don't welcome someone who is overly critical and mean.  I follow many blogs and love to comment, but sometimes it happens that I disagree in some way with what they said on their blog;  in this case, I will pass on commenting rather than say something disagreeable on their blog.  And furthermore, if I happen upon a total strangers' blog and find that there are differences in their beliefs and mine, I'll just move on rather than taking the time to render a nasty comment. I don't even know the person, so who am I to criticize.  

So, hon, please don't waste your time praying for me.  I'm already further along spiritually than you are.  I am at peace with myself for I know and practice tolerance for all...and that, my friend, is what spirituality and religion is all about.  If anything, I should be praying for you, that one day you will find the same peace that I have and not be so closed-minded that you have to come to someone else's blog and try to dictate how they should live.   Remember....

A closed mind is a dying mind.

-Edna Ferber-
(Forgive the rant, please.  Intolerance is something that really gets under my skin.  And it especially irritates me when someone feels they have the right to come into my space with their catty remarks.  I respect others and I expect the same in return.)


  1. grrr.
    oh Mary, there are always people like this and it annoys me. I had some so called christian pray for me many years ago when I first began blogging - when I said I was a hedgewitch.. I told her the same thing: please don't pray for me.. I would rather not have prayers that are not from the heart. I want prayers filled with love. there is no love in judgement. none at all. bloody do gooders!!
    I have had comments lately that are worrying me. from someone who lives very near by.. it scares me actually now that someone could find out where I live... and this is because i am so open.. *sigh*
    keep doing what you do. I love, love your blog xoxo pfft to mrs pray-er.

  2. Glad to c someone agrees with my view about an openmind I let my kids go to church with my dad but have natureistic views of religion I guess u could say pagan but have tolerance about it all. Recently the girls were in a play and I attended a practice my little girl that was 5 said she wanted to be moved out of the scene where marry crys about Jesus being on the cross so the director told her to just sneak bk in the bk so I thought ok no biggE I had to miss the main play bcause my mother in law became really ill in the hosp and they didnt think she was going to mk it SO When I heard my 5yr old peed herself at the end of the play which they hadnt practiced for or known about I was pissed hah no pun intended I ask her what had happened she said The devil came and dragged people to hell at the end mommE and it really scared me Well I wonder why WTH needless to say they WONT be in the EASTER play nxt yr Oh btw the director MY AUNT so I cant say much she is afterall sewing my other daughters spring dress for school but as soon as I learn how to sew It ain t gonna b pretty Her dadE was quiet mad too Its some people who do whatever they have to to jsut to get their point across. Dont use my 5yr old like that! That makes people think all of that religion is bad I dont think all religion is bad I think its just like people ,they are good and bad in both Now I remember whay I chose a diffent path when I was older I hated that they tried to scare u to death just to get u to believe in God .

  3. Oh good grief! Pray for you 'cause your priorities aren't straight! LOL!!! Wonder if she was "moved" to pray for me too, since I picked right up on your kid's Easter clothes post, and carried it on, even to our tradition of a new hat at Christmas! That must have shocked her too!

    Neither you nor I carry on about where we are on our path, in our blogs. And I do get mighty irritated with those bloggers who feel they have to tell how they have IT, and someone like me, is going to hell.

    Naturally, the ones which do it all the time, I don't read. But I'm referring to the sweet gals who now and then, stick that above message in. Bleahhhhhhhhhh... Who are they to decide anything, about me?!? Because of their thinking that they have IT? Bahh-humbug...

    Thank you Mary, for allowing me this little rant in your comments! It's been a long, tough week we just passed thought. I mean, with all the religious views, that have been sprinkled into Pretty Blog Land, hither and yon.


    Gentle hugs...
    ♥ ~ ♥

  4. *shakes head in annoyance* Some people!

  5. I can sympathize Mary...i deal with it when it comes to my Husbands family, they are very close-minded and judgmental I try not to talk religion or politics with them because it doesn't go anywhere.I don't know where exactly i fit in...I probably would call myself agnostic or aligned with some Natives believes because they revere nature, But i did grow up Catholic and my beloved Grandmother was devout. I have a lot of lovely memory's from childhood celebrating Easter and Christmas and going to choir and going to church with her. Please don't let this person get to you too much , i missed the blog you are talking about (will read it in a minute)but you always come across compassionate and kind to me ♥

  6. Screw em Mary...they ain't worth the powder to blow themselves to HELL!
    I've known people that think their shit don't stink and where they went or are going...isn't to Heaven!
    I shit you not!

  7. Oh Dear Mary....I love it when I come here AND YOU "RANT FOR ALL OF US". Tolerance and love are the key to making it in this world and on this planet. Each of us is special in our own my sweet soul- mate says.....THAT's WHAT MAKES IT A BALLGAME.



  8. Mary - Many years ago when I went through a divorce, I (unlike my spouse) chose not to talk about it with others. Most of them, many mutual friends, wanted to know all the gory details. They'd tell me that they "ran into" my ex and he said this and that and this and that and so I started answering this way "The one who does the most talking has the most explaining to do."

    and left it at that.

    I think in a way the same thing applies to those who do a lot of talking (preaching) about their chosen faith. It feels to me that they are not confident enough in their faith to just be - they have to find others to agree with them and join their club. In my experience those with strong spiritual beliefs are content to just be and respect the faiths of others. There is a peace about them.

    I choose to be that person. I only get angered or upset about the faiths of others when, like you, they try to tell me that I'm wrong, bad, evil, stupid, whatever they think the reason is that I have my own path.

  9. Oh my...All knowing, holier than thou idiots are all around us. One thing about you Mary, after all the ranting and everything's said, you also know forgiveness and will move on with your blog. Don't waste your time with these people. Laugh it off, shake your head and keep being you....

  10. Like I said Mary...these trolls are crunchy and go good with ketchup! He He He

    You know how I feel Sister Love!

    Amen! Can I get a witness?

    You are loved and adored by many!!!