Sunday, September 19, 2004

Transcendentalism and Paganism

When asked, the philosophical/religious view that I express identification with is transcendentalism.

Today, I was considering that paganism and transcendentalism could be considered broad terms for the two religious/philosophical impulses. Paganism respects or worships nature -- pre-rational, pre-personal instincts and structures. Transcendentalism worships that which is beyond nature.

Most religions that call themselves Christianity consider themselves transcendentalisms, but are, in reality, paganisms. That is, they worship a mythic god, which was concieved in the ancient imagination, and is thus pre-personal.

They are not true Christianity, because they do not imitate Jesus. Jesus' message was that possessions, ego, status, and all the other things of this world must be sacrificed. When they are truly sacrificed, this world is transformed into a spiritual world.

Some Christianities are truly transpersonal. The essential characteristic of transpersonal Christianity is their consideration of the conventional idea of success. For those who consider conventional success something to be gained are pagans, rather than transcendentalists. That so many self-described Christians actually do worship worldly success -- despite their self-decribed transcendentalism -- merely demonstrates the pre-personal nature of their worship.


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