It’s been a little over nine months since I started “mapping” out my personal journey through life. For those of you who have been with me from the beginning of this hike through history, you may have the feeling, at times, that I really have no clue where I’m going. Well, you would be right, but then that is the way of life on each of our personal journeys. Sometimes faith and belief are all we have to guide us.
We are in a time of the year that speaks to many people, of many faiths, about the joy and sacredness of their particular spiritual belief system as they celebrate their holy day.
You’ve read throughout this meandering of mine, that I’ve looked for answers to many questions and tried to see how the pieces fit together. One of the questions that I’ve always had is why one positive spiritual path would adamantly condemn another positive spiritual path because they are different in their beliefs and practices. (I use the term “positive” to mean beneficial, uplifting, progressive. ) We all don’t drive the same make and model of car, nor do we all declare strawberry to be our favorite ice cream, why should we or would we all follow just one spiritual path? And just like our choice of car or flavor of ice cream, it’s a matter of taste and preference which spiritual path becomes our path of faith to journey through this lifetime. If “all roads lead to Rome”, as they say, then what does it matter which “road” you choose to follow in your journey back to the Godhead, as long as you’re headed in the right direction?
The path I have chosen, and have followed for almost 38 years now, is one that resonates to my beliefs and philosophies concerning life as I view it from my particular perspective. To me, that should be a factor in anyone’s choice in spiritual practices. Do the tenets, dogma, and/or creed of this particular belief feel comfortable to you? Do you feel at home with the worship and practices of your chosen faith? Or was your faith chosen for you and you’ve just never given it much thought?
When members of my Temple enter sacred space to worship and celebrate one of our holy days, we do so with the words, “In perfect love and perfect trust.” Many may wonder what that means. For us it means leaving the mundane world behind as we enter that sacred space and uplifting ourselves to a place where only unconditional love and complete faith exist. We have come together in love, peace, truth and joy to celebrate the sacredness of all life.
As I’ve stated before, we have only one Law and that is, “An’ ye harm none, do what thou wilt.” This is basic to all who follow Wicca. The particular tradition (denomination) that I belong to also has seven tenets that we believe are an important practice in our lives. Each of these tenets helps to guide us to being more spiritual, more aware, and more connected to each other and Nature. To quote directly from our literature:
Tenet of the Balanced Life: The aim of Wicca is to help its people find a harmonious existence, knowing themselves and the universe as well as representing the balance between the forces of Nature and Man. This balanced condition allows a man or woman to stretch out and view life from all angles without distortion.
Tenet of Harmony: While Man needs most of Nature if he is to survive, it is somewhat doubtful if Nature needs Man. So we must not only live in harmony with each other but with all of Nature as well.
Tenet of Trust: Where there is love there should be trust. If trust is absent then there can never be love that is meaningful. We do not see a paradise on earth, with all men loving each other. We know that a doctrine of spiritual development is necessary; so we seek for ways in which we may find trust and it cannot be a blind type of trust. Trust can be as great of an attainment as love and is actually much more realistic.
Tenet of Humility: One of the first things taught in Wicca is to study oneself, to put this before anything else. We do not set ourselves up as judges of everyone around us, especially those who seem to be in the habit of falling into “evil ways”.
Tenet of Tolerance: We learn to endure with patience people whose opinions are not like ours. Many will speak offensively about us because of their lack of accurate knowledge, but because of our knowledge we can afford to be very tolerant of these people.
Tenet of Learning: In every aspect of our learning, we become conscious that as we learn, more learning is necessary, but learning is nothing unless it is used in practical everyday life. In all teachings of Wicca, there is a necessity to relate learning to whatever sphere of life the student occupies.
Tenet of Reincarnation: We understand that the spirit inhabiting every human body will continue to inhabit body after body until it has gained sufficient experience to elevate itself onto the spiral of the Cosmos. It is the acceptance of reincarnation which is the great starting point of Wicca. It is the explanation of why men appear not to be “created equal” when it is actually spiritual evolution which makes Man appear this way.
If you are willing to believe, as I stated in my last journey log, that we are pieces of the Creative Force, then we truly are spiritual beings having a physical experience. It is the spiritual part of us that calls us back to the spiritual. To do this, we each seek out a path that feels right to each of us, that encompasses our viewpoint of life from our unique perspective, and which gives us the opportunity to spiritually evolve. We then embrace the beliefs and practices of that path. However, to my mind, those beliefs and practices should never incorporate the denigration of another’s beliefs or practices just because they differ from our own.
This is a season for celebrating the sacredness of all positive spiritual paths. Perhaps it’s time we all entered our “temples” each day “in perfect love and perfect trust” for ourselves and each other.
Whatever your faith may be, whatever holiday you may celebrate at this time of the year –
Season’s Greetings! May your holidays be filled with love, peace, truth and joy and may Spirit guide you throughout the coming year.