Friday, October 28, 2011

Open Candlelight Labyrinth - October 30th

Three Roads Grove is hosting a candlelight labyrinth on Sunday, October 30th from 5:00pm to 7:00pm at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Yellow Springs in Yellow Springs, OH. 

The labyrinth is an ancient tool used for meditative purposes that is seen in the artwork of many cultures. It combines sacred geometry with movement meditation to facilitate a spiritual experience for those participating in it. Our labyrinth keeps in the spirit of Samhain and is designed to help one reflect on their ancestors and departed loved ones, as well as providing a space for inner reflection. 

Our labyrinth is open to the public, but we ask that everyone remain quiet and respectful of the space. Light refreshments will be served. If you have any questions, please contact us at

Blessed Be!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Proof of God

I recently got dragged into a Facebook discussion about religion that devolved into an argument between my atheist friend going "There is no proof that God exists!" and my Catholic friend going "There is no proof God doesn't exist!" This sort of banter always hurts my head, because it's silly. 

I understand atheism. I understand why people choose not to believe. However, I think a lot of times that decision is made because our western minds are so programmed by Christianity that we think there is no other way to believe. Christianity presents itself as factual and true in the scientific meaning of the word true. More Christians than not believe the bible is true to varying degrees of actuality. And I think that turns people off, because as my atheist friend said, there is no historical or scientific proof of the vast majority of the bible. 

 But lack of historical or scientific proof doesn't make a spiritual tradition illegitimate. 

I, too, get turned off by Christianity when it is used to try to push legislation that hurts people and society such as halting scientific advances, gay people not being allowed to adopt or get married, women not having full agency over their bodies, not being able to buy liquor in some places on Sundays, companies making Christmas a paid holiday but not the other religious holidays in December, etc. I'm also very much against the idea of a universal spirituality, and am very much turned off by that rhetoric. 

As a Pagan, my faith is there for me to help me through the hard times, to help keep me focused on the future, and to celebrate the cycles of Nature. I don't need my religion to explain science (I have science for that!), but my religion makes science more poetic. I know, scientifically, how rainbows are formed but that doesn't stop them from taking my breath away, nor does it stop me from saying a prayer to the gods, thanking them for the beauty.

Another reason why it is easier for me, as a Pagan, is that my beliefs allow the existence of other beliefs. I don't believe in universal spirituality; I think it's a deeply personal experience that all of us must, ultimately, go through alone. Though Pagans gather together for worship, our own personal journeys are just that - personal. 

This way of thinking and believing keeps Pagans from pushing Paganism into government and into the private lives of other people. We know that government can and should function outside of the realm of religion. And we know that science doesn't negate religion. And we're not the only religion for whom that is true. In fact, Pope John Paul II wrote an excellent article back in the 70s about why everyone should embrace evolution. 

It also means that we don't need anyone to prove one way or another if the gods exist. That's really up to everyone on an individual basis to figure out for themselves; it's not a question science can answer. And that's ok. 

When the squeaky wheel gets the grease, it's hard to remember sometimes that there are alternatives to a universal dogma that teaches it is absolutely true and is the only way to peace, salvation, and happiness. If I thought that Christianity was my only choice of religion I would be an atheist too.