Technically, it isn’t THAT late at night, but that’s beside the point.

Thoughts cross my mind concerning orthodoxy and heresy. Thoughts cross my mind on the place of the Bible in things.

The problem that happens with Catholic Christendom is that the notion that consensus makes reality. Well, no, it doesn’t…several people can vote on something and be entirely incorrect on it. The notion that Protestants just individually make up whatever they want to believe about the Bible is a gross misrepresentation of the notion of individual conscience on matters.

The biggest issue in my mind right now is that it’s difficult to come across a tradition of Christianity that is liturgical AND progressive. Some would cry, “The Episcopal Church!” (of which I am an official member), but so often, I’ve noticed the Church falls short of its actual banter about being so liturgiacally high.

I’ve been to several different Episcopal Churches in the Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast, and I can tell you that none of them do the liturgy 100% “correctly,” if I may put it that way. Each parish, in some way, botches the liturgy or leaves out something that I see as integral to the process.

Some people seem to think that my concern over bad liturgy or liturgical deficiencies is outmoded and that we should just get on with the important things. The issue I take is that the liturgy represents something very powerful and important: our own relationship to God, and our own ego’s relationship to our higher selves.

THIS is why so many of us are so gung-ho about the ritual being carried out properly; the ritual is a statement about how we relate to our Higher Self. So, when the liturgy is carried about sloppily, it’s as though we don’t really take our Higher Self seriously; it’s a slap in the face to the Indwelling Christ.

No, I don’t think the Mass should have a single, uniform expression from which it never deviates. That is not the point. Even the Star Trek Mass of the Book of Common Prayer (Eucharistic Prayer C) can be effective if it’s done with due reverence, intention, and the correct liturgical gestures.

(As a matter of interest, my favorite Eucharistic Prayer is D. However, I have yet to hear a priest say Mass with it.)

But there are certain gestures, certain ritual actions that should not be left out. The Host should always be elevated; the Chalice should always be elevated; the Host and Chalice should always be elevated in the Lesser Elevation at the end.

Anyway, I shall address one more issue, and then be done here.

I take issue with the notion of Christian Unity. I’ve seen some who would say that we should not divide ourselves, that we should not call ourselves Baptist or Catholic or whatever but only refer to ourselves as merely “Christian.” 

This is an action taken out of ignorance, I think, as it attempts to deny the differences in theology and emphases given in various traditions. On one level, sure, I can understand the reasoning being this. On the other hand, it attempts to ignore why denominations rise in the first place- because someone, somewhere, disagrees strongly enough with the way things are being done that they see fit to attempt to change it and persuade other people to go along with them.

In my own pursuit of Nirvana, I think I’ve swallowed way too much Christian dogmatic bullshit, attempting to fit into the mainstream or orthodox churches in a way that no person actually does without a good dose of cognitive dissonance. My approach and emphasis in life is that of a hardcore mystic; I am not interested in squabbling about hypothetical conceptions of reality but want real practice that will cause real change in my life. 

I think it’s also funny that so many people will accuse others of making God in their own image when they themselves have done the same thing; it’s strange that the older churches seem to think their faith handed down is the “once and for all” faith, never stopping to question that they, too, may be serving a particular image of Christ that they’ve formed of their own hands.

Just because more people were involved in the shaping of the fault doesn’t mean that it’s more true; it only means it’s more complex because more people contributed to it!

Here Endeth the Rant

Stevo 

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