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The One Ring Forums: Off Topic: The Pollantir:
How do you define yourself religiously?
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Poll: How do you define yourself religiously?
Christian Any denomination
Spirtual, nonreligious, other, please define.
View Results (93 votes)


Apr 28 2014, 11:44pm

Post #76 of 90 (532 views)
I think that's one of the major lessons of life [In reply to] Can't Post

don't listen to what people say. Look at what they DO.

on Facebook I listed my political stance as "Are you kind to others?" The same applies to my religious stance.


Apr 29 2014, 3:25pm

Post #77 of 90 (521 views)
Carl Jung used to say [In reply to] Can't Post

that people started to need psychologists after they lost their faith. To a believer the sacraments of the Church offered the same healing help that people now seek in therapy.

I'm a big believer in confessing and atoning for wrongs done, myself. And who among us doesn't need to be forgiven?


Apr 29 2014, 4:55pm

Post #78 of 90 (519 views)
I wonder [In reply to] Can't Post

I wonder if that is the same for people who 'lost' their faith before they needed to have some form of therapy from the church.

I wonder if that is the same for people who have no faith and never did?

I know for myself i have not needed to go to therapy or to church for forgiveness. Though i don't feel i have done anything particularly wrong in my life, im not perfect but like most people essentially good.

As for who doesn't need forgiven - i wouldn't look to therapy for forgiveness or the church, so maybe i don't? Or maybe i would just look elsewhere. Though i get what you are meaning.

As for who truly doesn't need forgiveness - sociopaths? Hard to feel the need to be forgiven for something when you have no empathy, conscience, guilt or shame.

The Shire

Apr 29 2014, 6:59pm

Post #79 of 90 (502 views)
Beautiful conclusion :-) [In reply to] Can't Post

I got a little depressed after what I wrote, but your post made me smile Smile Thank you!


Apr 30 2014, 8:50pm

Post #80 of 90 (480 views)
You must realize [In reply to] Can't Post

that Tolkien's books are considered by philosophers to be stories in which the principles of Christianity are the most pronounced and important element. As if Professor Tolkien were using his works to teach Christianity. You might consider your love of his works as showing your love of and sharing of his faith.
Doesn't have to be true for everyone...just something to think about...

Werde Spinner

Apr 30 2014, 11:50pm

Post #81 of 90 (467 views)
Bless this post! [In reply to] Can't Post

You've said just about everything I could say. (I skipped the 'questioning the faith' step, though; I decided very early on to do lots of research and know exactly what I believed and why so I could avoid that step! Cool)

As a Catholic, I of course believe my religion is true. However, I have no wish to force others to accept it. That would do no good! And I'd much rather someone sincerely seek to lead a good life without religion than be forced to be part of one they do not whole-heartedly accept or believe in. It's very important to know what you believe in (or what you do not believe in, as the case may be) and why.

I am currently myself a science major in college, and I am also finding that the more I learn about the workings of the universe the stronger my faith becomes. It reminds me of a quote from the Catholic chemist Louis Pasteur (paraphrased): "It is because I know all this about science that I have the faith of an old Breton peasant. Were I to know everything about science, I would have the faith of an old Breton peasant woman."

In Reply To
I'm a "cradle Catholic", as I was born into a Catholic family and have been raised Catholic.

Sorry, I didn't want to quote your whole post, as lovely as it was! I thought it might result in a few tl;dr reactions. Laugh


May 1 2014, 3:11am

Post #82 of 90 (504 views)
This reminds me of a very old saying: [In reply to] Can't Post

"For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities--his eternal power and divine nature--have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made..."

Grey Havens

May 1 2014, 8:05pm

Post #83 of 90 (451 views)
That's beautiful, SirDennis!// [In reply to] Can't Post


Grey Havens

May 1 2014, 8:16pm

Post #84 of 90 (453 views)
Theologian [In reply to] Can't Post

and late to the discussion. sigh. That's what I get for being busy...

Both silneldor and Alassea *waves excitedly to both* summed up a lot of what I feel about matters of faith - fitting for me, since I grew up Methodist and Catholic, have wandered through and have great appreciation for Episcopalian (US and Scottish) and Pagan ways. I've repeatedly returned to the United Methodist Church, and it works for now. It's good to be reminded I'm not alone in matters of Spirit, acceptance of diversity, and working these matters through for one's self with the help of supportive community.

In short, you all are wonderful!


May 2 2014, 3:41am

Post #85 of 90 (450 views)
Glad to see you joined our discussion! [In reply to] Can't Post

So glad to see people are enjoying it.

nandorin elf

May 3 2014, 1:15am

Post #86 of 90 (418 views)
Good Quote [In reply to] Can't Post

That's a great quote. Totally agree.

nandorin elf

May 3 2014, 1:47am

Post #87 of 90 (426 views)
Independent Baptist [In reply to] Can't Post

That's the denomination I attend but I prefer "Christ-follower" since Christians come from many denominations. I was raised in church, but my dad also encouraged me to decide for myself what I believed and why. I examined my beliefs during my early teens, but I never walked away from my faith. There's no perfect church, but I don't suppose an imperfect person like myself would fit in there if there was. Ultimately I find my purpose in a personal relationship with Christ and try to show love and grace in everything I do. I also love studying other religions so I can better understand where other people are coming from.
Thanks for getting this great discussion going, Daughter of Laketown. Smile Lots of interesting responses.

(This post was edited by nandorin elf on May 3 2014, 1:49am)


May 4 2014, 9:59am

Post #88 of 90 (408 views)
Jewish [In reply to] Can't Post

Well, I'm Jewish.

And while there will be some who might wonder what type of a Jew I am, and to what Jewish denomination I belong to, my answer would be just Jewish, cause I don't believe in 'versions' when it comes to Judaism. There was only one revelation at Sinai and its either you accept and follow the 613 Commandments of God or you don't, there is no middle ground. To quote Elijah : " How long will you falter between two opinions? "If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him". 1 Kings 18:21

I have read some of the responses here by our fellow members, many have said that they have formed a 'personal relationship with Jesus', I would have to be honest with myself and not be so swift to come to the conclusion that I already have a personal relationship with the God of Israel. Yes I do believe that he hears me when I pray, and wants to help me, and is protecting me, and watches over me, and wants good for me, but I am constantly challenged by him, every day of my life. I would be more honest if I said that God has a personal relationship with me, then I with him, cause I really don't think that I earned his total attention, due to my faults and transgressions, and the road of achieving a close and intimate relationship with God is not by sheer fantasy, me imagining that he is there and listening to my every word of prayer, but by actually feeling it, and by actually knowing that I earned his total attention, as Jacob had yelled out to God : "I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies, and of all the truth, which thou hast shewed unto thy servant; for with my staff I passed over this Jordan; and now I am become two bands. Genesis 32:10

So I say that I'm not worthy to have the audacity to claim that I have a 'personal relationship' with God. If I do, then that's for God to judge and not me to do so while claiming no shred of evidence to support that I'm so worthy in the eyes of God that he listens to my prayers and does as I wish.

If I could sum up very shortly what it means to be a Jew, I would say that been a Jew is having Faith. For all things start and end with faith. All of the 613 Commandments that were given on Mount Sinai by God to the Jews are all designed to generate on thing and one thing only, Faith. Basically if one is confronted with a dilemma, on the one hand you have a commandment to perform, lets say the commandment of eating Matzos on Passover and on the other hand you have a situation where you must not get angry and stay calm, a Jew is forbidden to perform the biblical commandment at the expanse of getting angry for getting angry is like worshiping an idol, and as such he will lose his faith. No biblical commandment no matter how lofty important or virtuous can ever take precedence over your faith, cause every single commandment was given to the Jews just for the purpose to generate within them more and more faith in God, thus anything that disrupts this aim, yes even the Commandments themselves, must be not performed.

To give an example of what I mean to be Jewish from real life, I would like to share a Story that actually took place not so long ago, about 150 years ago. The Story is told of the Great world famous Kabbalist and Talmudic genius, the Rabbi of the city of Karlin, who was sitting around the Passover Table with his students. No doubt the level of the holiness was great, and the spiritual things that he did at that table were of great significance, but as the Rabbi completed the Seder, he had looked over his gazing students and told them: Do you think that this was a Great Passover Seder? no. We still didn't even come close to the level of greatness that is found in the Passover Seder of Mendel the Shoemaker that lives by the edge of the city. The students looked flummoxed, how can the Great Rabbi say that the Passover Seder of the simple shoemaker Jew is way greater in spirituality then the Great Kabbalistic and mystical Seder of the Chief Rabbi of the city? did the Rabbi have too much to drink? what is he talking about? You look surprised, the Rabbi answered them, I tell you now to go to Mandel's house and look through the window and see what Mandel is doing there in his Seder. The students did as their Rabbi told them, and they all gathered around the window of Mandel's cabin and veered through to see what will take place. This is the scene that they saw:

Mandel's wife goes to the living room and takes all the Matzos, wine and food from the table and brings it all back to the Kitchen. She declared 'We will not have a Passover Seder Tonight!". Mandel walked to the Kitchen and very gently said to his wife: My dear, my beauty, perhaps I have said something that upset you today, perhaps I have hurt your feelings in anyways, please forgive me, please lets have the Seder Tonight'. And off he took all the candles and Matzos, wines and all the food back to the living room table. And again, the same thing repeats itself, his wife comes back to the living room, takes everything and puts it back on the kitchen, while declaring loudly :" There will not be any Seder in our home tonight'. Yet again, Mandel, without showing any signs of anger, came back to his wife with a low and loving voice and said to her: "My wife, my Queen, please don't be upset with me, perhaps I didn't buy you enough clothing for the Holiday, or did something that made you upset, you are rite to be upset with me, for I have not been a good husband, please lets go and have the Passover Seder tonight, and again he took everything off the Kitchen counter, and walked to the living room and set the table again. This on and off, from and to, exchanges between Mandel and his wife took 6 hours long, at which Mandel not even once had yelled at his wife or showed any anger towards her. At the end of this long exchange his wife finally agreed, and they both sat down and had the Passover Seder. Mandel was faced with a dilemma , to perform a commandment of God or to lose his faith, and he chose to lose the commandment but never lose his faith, cause if he got angry at his wife its basically saying that it is not God who told his wife to behave this way to him. A Jew refuses to see anything in this world without God in it. He refuses to blame the boss for getting fired, because it is God who made the boss to fire you. A refuses to blame the cop that stopped him and gave him a ticket, cause he has faith that God had told the cop to do so, he refuses to get angry at his kids for disturbing him and not letting him get rest, because he has faith that God had told or made the kids to do just that. The Motto of a Jew is : 'There is nothing other but God'.

That's what the Rabbi meant when he told his students that Mandel's Passover Seder is way superior then the Seder that he had performed.

Now, to achieve this kind of faith takes some hard work, complete dedication, and utter candidness and truthfulness, and the true test is not feeling content with yourself that you may found some kind of a personal relationship with God, but that you actually live that relationship to be worthy of that relationship, and the test is to really have complete faith that all the things that happen in your life are all guided in the most detailed manner by God, for there is nothing else in the world, no other power that can harm or benefit you other then God. If one doesn't have this, and is willing to blame the stone and not the one that actually throws it, to blame the people around you for all your problems without accepting that all are just messengers of God , who are doing his will, whether they know it or not, can't be called a real Jew . Cause once he attributes anything that happens with him to chance or to any other power, he can't be a person of faith. So to be Jewish is to have complete awareness that God exists and controls and guides and powers everything in existence and everything with you and around you, once a person comes to this level, then he can be called a Faithful Jew.

Best Wishes,


(This post was edited by SaulComposer on May 4 2014, 10:09am)


May 10 2014, 5:33pm

Post #89 of 90 (356 views)
Non Religous [In reply to] Can't Post

I did attend church in my youth (that was more a family obligation than choice) but I haven't really given it much thought since then, nor have I felt any sense of loss.

I'm not really sure how to classify myself- I have no religious believes per se, although I'm open to the concept of Religion it doesn't always make alot of sense to me, and it's not a subject I feel any desire to explore further. So I couldn't classify myself as Atheist- I simply haven't thought about it.

No offense intended of course-I have close family and friends who have religious beliefs, but as imin stated earlyier, the UK is a largely secular society.

I certainly respect those who have religous beliefs, and the moral lessons they teach, but as they say different strokes for different folks.


Tol Eressea

May 11 2014, 4:40pm

Post #90 of 90 (373 views)
Very good! // [In reply to] Can't Post


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