Cause I sure as hell can't believe in the mean, judgmental, insecure god that I grew up with.
Even if Yaweh turned out to be the only game in town, who the hell needs it?
"God is not in some building. God is in nature and God is in each of us."
"In this century the christian church has made a great effort to make people believe that tolerance was a christian virtue. However you only need to look at history to see that this is quite untrue."
"One should envision one's Gods as being at least as good as the best human beings. The best of us would not damn people for eternity for an honest difference of opinion or for petty faults. The best among us would not damn people for eternity at all. Judged by these criteria, the God of the fundamentalist Christians is unworthy of worship. In the unlikely event he is actually in charge, I would gladly go to hell with my head held high. At the same time, while I disagree with Christian teachings from their foundation myths on up, I am not going to attack something that brings hope, comfort and inspiration to people and makes them kinder and more honest human beings."
From the home page of Jordsvin, who seems a jolly good fellow! Loki sez: "Visit him, or else!" ;-)
In all truth, I am going through quite a rough spot right now. What makes it rougher is that the problem does not belong to me, it belongs to someone whom I would gladly take it from. In my youth I was taught that bad things happen to bad people and that we must beg the heavy-handed Almighty for forgiveness. I have become less and less tolerant of the heavy-handed almighty over the past few years. I actually relinquished my Catholicism when I was 18 and began exploring Pagan mysticism, but let's face it, Folks, once a Catholic always a Catholic, to an extent. The guilt is in you like an encapsulated virus and will resurface. When things get tough, the feeling that somehow you brought this on yourself by not being good enough will come and hit you upside the head with the force of 10 Mjollnirs.
I did not raise my son (the person going through the hard time) with the horrible, horrible Catholic guilt. He was always free to explore the possibilities. He doesn't adhere to any particular religion but his beliefs tend to be sort of a general Neopaganism mixed with Buddhism, the great thing about Buddhism being that it is a philosophy rather than a religion so it can fit in nicely with any religion. My son is thankfully free from the horrors that visit me, the fear that because of my abandonment of the rather mean-spirited dogma of my childhood, the fires of hell are awaitin' and there will be no butter in Hell!*
I end up on the defensive about being viewed as a "Satan Worshipper" even now. My son, on the other hand, rather than viewing Satan as the anti-good views him as a trickster deity, worthy of the same respect as any other deity. If you come to Satan asking him for something, he may very well give it to you. But there will always be a price, and I'm not talking about sacrificing your neighbor's dog or your neighbor. The true Satan is an intellectual deity who doesn't care one whit one way or another about such things. According to my son's view, Satan is in the same class as Set, Loki, and other trickster deities. Such deities know your mind, heart and soul. Be very, very careful about approaching such a being. They will not destroy you directly, but they may allow you to destroy yourself.
As well, Satan and Lucifer are two entirely different entities that are often confused. But this is an essay for another time.
For myself personally, when it comes to issues such as prosperity, I find that a deity such as Ganesha preferable to petition. Lord Ganesha is not going to grant petitions such as "make me the most richest beeyatch with the most bling so I can be better than everyone else" because that would be completely self-serving. He wants to know that your intentions are honorable, but generally he won't punish you for asking even if the request isn't entirely honorable. You really have to piss him off for him to get medieval on your ass.
However, I have digressed. My son, who is a very wise and kind soul, is going through great difficulty in his life at this time. Unfortunately people on both sides of his family are prone to mood disorders, and he is experiencing problems with severe social anxiety, which cause him to isolate himself, and which then contribute to major depression. He checked into the psych unit voluntarily because he was suicidal. I'm glad he did this, and the clinicians there seem very compassionate and humane, not like back in my day when I attempted suicide and this nurse told me "you're a freak and you'll always be a freak. People like you can never be normal." My retort was "well, I'd rather be a freak than a fucking bitch like you."
Thus, if anyone reading this would be so kind as to petition whichever Powers that Be that appeal to you, or simply send positive thoughts to my son Michael that he may be guided to recovery and to learn helpful coping skills to deal with his social anxiety, it is appreciated.
*(disclaimer: I do not and will never have a problem with Jesus Christ, who was a kind and enlightened soul that wanted the best for people. I have a problem with the judgmental and intolerant institution that uses his name, and I feel that they sure as hell ain't asking themselves "what would Jesus do" when they pour their hateful diatribe upon the world. And I have a problem with the harsh, judgmental God of this church.)