Thursday, January 3, 2008

people and gods

The author is writing about a pagan ritual where the partitioners stand in a circle and do a series of chants and hand motions. As I read I think, 'that would be weird' when suddenly my brain regurgitates a memory for me; yep, I'm standing in a circle, doing a series of hand motions and speaking (chanting?) in unison with the others in the circle. I can almost smell the polyester from the veil that is covering my face, and feel the odd way it pushes my breath back to me when I speak the words.

In my head I can hear that evangelical guy from my mission screaming about how Mormon's are really a cult that worships satan, so of course our ceremonies have similarities to pagan rituals. Likewise I also hear my dad's voice from my youth reiterating how Satan has created lots of imitations of God's true religion in order to
deceive people and lead them away, so of course there are many lines of similarities between mormonism and other faiths.

Me, I just like circles. And I am fascinated by all the underlying similarities between different religions and faiths. Forget the screaming, and justifying and apologetics... To me, all the large and tiny ways in which belief systems intersect is proof there is a God. And that people all hear differently.


(chandelle) said...

oh my gosh, i just totally had a flashback to that whole thing, standing in a circle, veiled, hands over the head, chanting. yikes.

Lessie said...

Ya know, I'd never thought of it that way, but I guess it does kind of look like that, huh? Oh well, the ritual was never really what did it for me, but the quiet, uninterrupted space to think was fantastic, and that's the only thing I miss. Especially on days like today where I feel like I'm chained to my children.

G said...

your feeling chained to your kids today too, huh?
one of those days.

Yeah, I remember how weird the temple felt when I first went through... now as I am reading about other ceremonies and rituals from both christian and non-christian faiths, it doesn't seem quite so unusual. (But not so in keeping with the mainstream protestant-like image that church PR likes to portray.)

quiet, uninterrupted space... that also seems to be a common thread in a lot of different 'paths to enlightenment'
(maybe that is why so many different 'paths' dictate celibacy- cuz children don't facilitate peace and quiet?)

Lessie said...

LOL! I'd never thought of it that way, but you're sure right about that! Peace and tranquility are about the last thing they facilitate (at least most of the time).

Nana said...

I like cicles too, and I think we had was to much propaganda as kids. There is a point when you say, are you trying to teach me, or make me forget how to think. We are still dizzy form back then, maybe that's why circles are so comforting! :) Love you

becca said...

hi galen,
i like this entry. the last paragraph is a similar feeling i have felt. that feeling of connective-ness, and that feeling of irksome-ness when people can't see that we all have similarities as humans....and why does somebody always have to be right and wrong? to me, it really seems to be beside the point.
<3, becca