Christian values

Some Not Really Connected Thoughts…

Still thinking…

When we decide that we are “sitting in judgement” are we really doing what is right? We have an obligation to decide what is criminal, meaning causing harm to others, but, what about other actions? What about someone’s beliefs? Someday, I’ll stand before my maker and have to talk about MY life, not yours.

When we presume to judge the condition of someone’s soul, we are taking from God, that power and responsibility. We, as Christians, are warned against that. We are told, specifically, that the same standard we use will be used on us. If we judge based on our perceptions of “flawed” are we so very sure that His perception of “flawed” will not include some aspect of us? Are ANY of us so perfect that every bit of us can stand the scrutiny that we apply to others?

I KNOW I could not pass that test…

*****

Divination scares me. Rituals scare me. So, I don’t practice them. Makes you wonder why I am so protective of Witches? Because Witches don’t scare me. I know too many. I just don’t ask them about the ritual aspects.

*****

“With great power comes great responsibility”

We, each of us, has the power of life and death. We believe that our own view is the most important. We know that we, ourselves only,  are unique.

So, what do we do with that? Do we use our “power”, meaning our innate sense of self and value, to condemn, in our view, others for being “not us” and not “unique” or do we recognize that other people are just as individual?

That’s the question…and the power. We may recognize that people have the same rights of self and individuality that we so strongly claim or we may remove them from humanity, and life, by piling them into a group that we think are less than us and giving them “death”.

To trivialize someone for their belief is to take away from our own. To claim significance for ourselves and say that our view stands above the rest minimizes our beliefs just as we do to them. Being the biggest algae in the pond is no accomplishment. I’d rather stand among peers of strong faith and belief…even if I do not share them…than be just another green slime claiming to be king…

*****

These were just some stuff that bounced around. My life, out here, was busy for a couple of weeks because of work. Feel free to ask me stuff. I’ll answer. We might disagree. I might become defensive because I do “cherry pick” the Bible. I believe that we all do. We take the parts we want and “disregard the rest” to paraphrase Simon and Garfunkle…

I’ll leave you with this, my views are valid…for me…I’ll defend your right to your perspective, even if I don’t share it.

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”If it’s inevitable, just relax and enjoy it.”

I’m confused. Maybe you can help me to understand. I keep bumping into the endless series of “why” questions…
Why is it ok for me to wear a cross or a Jesus t-shirt and it isn’t for a Pagan to wear a Pentagram or clothing expressing their faith?

Why is it ok for me to get upset if I think my faith, with all they myriad sect, is called a “cult” but, Pagans are expected to let it go?

Why is it “normal” for us to have a church on every corner and Pagans have to hide? We say they have rituals in the dark and the woods because they are evil and trying to hide. That isn’t the case, they respect and worship their Gods in nature and see the divine in the outdoors. We forced them to hide from us and blame them for hiding…

*sigh*

Once upon a time, we had a “good ole boy”, Clayton Williams, running for Governor of Texas who compared bad weather to rape. He said, ”If it’s inevitable, just relax and enjoy it.” Is that what we expect Pagans to do in a Christian society? We expect them to “enjoy it” when we ridicule them. We expect them to “relax” when we bully and shun? That’s how they’re supposed to face the “inevitable”?

Religious persecution and bullying are the same things. A rapist thinks that taking what they want from a person is their right. They do not see a human but, an object. Religious persecution sees as a right, removal of person and making an object out of a human. Neither sees the “wrongness” of their action because they only recognize the validity of themselves and not the other.

At our core, what we find as our “faith” is the most basic of our “intangibles”. It is our most basic self-identity. An attack on that calls for us to question everything else in our life. From our Faith or lack, comes our sense of place and value. It gives us a context for our life and a group identity. Outside of sexual orientation, it is the most important of the ways we define ourselves.

To strip that away, to make us fearful of being attacked for that is the equivalent. It, being attacked for faith, calls us to question our lives, values, and worth. It leaves us with fear and paranoia.

So, why do we think it’s our right and duty to ostracize? Why do Christians think that Christianity allows them to attack someone else’s faith while screaming “PERSECUTION” when the return is given. *editorial, I made a blanket statement without blanket intent. Not all Christians persecute and not all Christians cry when it is returned* Why do we expect to be able to attack with impunity? To ridicule without opening up ourselves to the same? To call someone “worthless” and not show our own same lack of worth? We “reap what we sow”.

I suppose I am naive. *sigh* I thought I was taught to treat others like I want to be treated. It doesn’t matter to me what your beliefs are Pagan, Christian, “Christian-ish”, or Heretic. Those are your core.

If I want my heresy to be respected, my “self” not to be violated, my life not to be “fear, I need to give you the same room in yours. You’re not an object and you, the physical and intangible, person deserve the safety of your person. I don’t have to understand you. I do have to protect and care for you. I NEVER get to expect you to “relax and enjoy it” unless I am willing to do the same…

Respect and Dignity…

*sigh*
I’ve been writing FOR Pagans lately. My posts seem, to me, to be harshly critical of “my faith”…or could be perceived that way. I need to clarify. I AM Christian. I love Christianity and the “words in red”, meaning HIS words. My disputes and disagreements aren’t with the Faith, it’s with the way SOME, not all, Christians practice and express it…

My own life and path have not been perfect, far from it…

I have been Christian, then atheist and addict, then “Fundie” Christian, and now Heretic Christian. I’ve wandered around trying to figure out where it all went together…and still do. My Faith is a big part of my life and world view. It is something that I spend a large portion of my mental time, when the stuff that involves work, life, and wife, allow me to think. Last thing before I sleep I’m thinking about it and first when I wake up. Quiet moments in my day and driving are filled with thinking about it…and where I fit into it…

*sigh*

Instinctively I seek the middle ground. My life as an addict was not one of “moderation”. Now it is. I am distrustful of strong emotionalism. I am suspicious of faith that is based on ecstasy. I also distrust faith that says, “if you’re not one of us, you MUST be against us”. Again, that does not make me anti-Christian but anti-extremist. I become concerned with harsh judgmentalism and wonder if those that carry that belief are not more self-centered than faithful…and I know that I am guilty of that, too. I AM self-centered, petty, jealous, rude, mean-spirited, and harsh. I am fully capable of all the things I try to write against, no matter how hard I try to keep from being them.

Respect is earned by being given. It is a truth of life that we get what we give. Kindness begets kindness. Respect for someone’s faith gains respect for our own. Treating people with dignity returns that to us…

There HAS to be a middle way. I am not, and will never be, Pagan but, there are parts of that path that I understand. I do not know the rituals and magics. I don’t want to know, not my business. I do know that the traditions of herbalism and lore were also an accepted part of Christianity. I know that we, Christians, also seek insight into the mind of God through prayer. There is no direct Pagan analog but, there is seeking understanding of the supernatural. We claim that their faith is “made up” or “fiction” yet, theirs predates ours.

*sigh*

I know a bunch of Pagans. That was an accident. I didn’t seek to know ANY. They are just people. They are just as imperfect as anyone…Of course, I accidentally know a bunch of Christians and we are an imperfect set, too…

Why do we think, as a general question, that our specific beliefs give an exclusive lock on morality? What makes us so presumptuous as to believe that our way is the ONLY way and every other one is wrong? Again, middle ground, I have been mistaken. I do NOT know everything and have no particular insight into the minds of others and no way of knowing the inner workings of the mind of God…”but, Miller, the Bible says…” Yes, it does, and we don’t speak the language it was written in, some words do not directly translate, and are we sure that the translators did not have their own agenda? Not to mention that I am SURE that Jesus spoke more words than were written down. Who knows what else He said?

I’m looking for a modus vivendi, a way of living that includes rather than excludes. I want faith to be respected. Yes, specifically, Christians and Pagans finding mutual respect and peace are the end goals.

I write these to both Pagans and Christians…

*sigh*

…even though it seems that few Christians read these. I had to learn because I was faced with a human that isn’t Christian and, yet, she  is someone I love and respect. It is my hope that we can find a way to interact that allows both paths to flourish. I want MY beliefs to be treated, by Pagans, the same way I want theirs to be respected by us…

They are not a bunch of “damned heathen Pagans with their silly made-up, comic book, magick, and divinations”. They are Witches. We are Christians. They do practice magic and divination. We pray. They are not “damned” any more than we are. They are merely different…and that adds color to our world.

*****

My reasons ARE selfish. I want respect for my beliefs. I want respect for my best friend’s. More importantly than the respect, I am proud and protective of her. I want for her to not have to hide or be cautious. Just as I am able to say, “I’m Christian” and not expect any repercussions, I want her to be able to say “I’m a Witch” and not worry about her job or safety. I have found that HER community is more accepting of my belief than mine is of hers. I see the wrongness in that because her’s are the older set and we are the upstart.

Changing the World isn’t easy. It happens one person at a time…7 billion times. I do not expect to finish the task in my life…nor do I have any reason to suspect it’ll ever be done…I do have to try, though. I have my words. I have my prayers. I have a friend that walks along side that gave me hope that change could happen, it did in me.

Respect and dignity are not too much to ask…

 

Unintended Results…

…The World is a big place…doh…and we each only really occupy a tiny bit of it. Yet, sometimes, we occupy more than we think. We, either by accident or intentionally, impact people in ways we never intended…

You see, there’s a Pagan that makes me a better Christian. To understand her place in my world and to try to understand her faith, not the rituals or beliefs but, the depth, I had to examine mine and my place in it. Look at it like this, we do not share the same group of beliefs but, we share Faith. We both believe in something greater than ourselves and find a sense of “place” within that commonality. *editorial, I had a pastor tell my Dad that they needed to get the humanism out of me. It didn’t work. I merely apply it within a context that include my spiritual beliefs*

Aj didn’t set out to help increase the depth of my faith. She really wasn’t trying to give me any reasons to look more deeply into what I believed. I think that she really wasn’t trying to do anything at all except correct a smart-aleck comment I made the day she told me she was Pagan. I KNOW it wasn’t her intent to “rock my world”. I suspect that if the issue hadn’t forced itself, she would have picked a different time or a different way to let me know. As it stands, what happened was I made a comment and she replied. Then there was the accidental *editorial, I do not believe in accidents. My belief is that there is a purpose for everything* part. I was left with a question, was I convinced beyond a doubt of the “rightness” of my position or was I human and possibly not completely correct? Do I believe every bit of the dogma or allow for the possibility that there are multiple “right” paths?

In the end, the only conclusion I could come to was that my path was correct…for me. That the Divine expresses itself to each in the fashion that is needed by that individual. That our spiritual beliefs are so deeply personal that we, even when we say we share beliefs, really only have our own personal construct.

At the same time, without knowing the details of her rituals, I see the depth of her faith and the way it impacts her life. That encourages me to explore my own. That puts mine at the front of my mind. That, by writing this blog, my beliefs and views are constantly on my mind. By looking for ways to express, to you, what I see, feel, and think I have to look inward. I have to find expressions of my God in my life and, even though she doesn’t see it the same, in her’s. *editorial, I AM NOT making her Christian. I am saying that having different beliefs does not negate that I believe that the God I have works in her life, just as she believes her gods work in mine. Fair enough?*

*editorial, I AM NOT making her Christian. I am saying that having different beliefs does not negate that I believe that the God I have works in her life, just as she believes her gods work in mine. Fair enough?*

We don’t always do what we set out to do. I didn’t seek out Pagan friends to become a nicer Christian. I didn’t really seek out Pagans for any reason. Wasn’t looking and, had I known before I got to know her, would have avoided them…as it is, though, I do know a few Pagans. I have learned to look outside myself. Because of that, when I look inward, I find depth in my faith and room in my heart that I never knew existed…all because  of a smart aleck comment and a response that was kindness and patience.

A soft answer turns away wrath,
    but a harsh word stirs up anger.
The tongue of the wise commends knowledge,
    but the mouths of fools pour out folly.” Prov 15: 1-2

Why Is a Pagan a Better Christian Than I Am?

Why does it take sending my best friend to Hell to make a point? Why should I have to portray her as a “poor damned soul” to get attention? What part of our Christian Values gives us the right to only reach out to the “lost” or our church? We try to help the poor because we feel like we have a duty to do it. We attempt to “convert” the “lost” out of pity.

*sigh*

Right now, this instant, my attitude is not very “Christian”. I’m not so much angry as disappointed. Christians, not Christ, have let me down. People claim to worship Jesus and do not act like it. He fed the hungry, embraced whores and tax collectors, spoke of loving his fellow man, whipped the money hungry in the temple, and ultimately was misrepresented and was killed for that. He said that we are not to question the condition of someone’s soul unless we want our soul to also be called to the same judgement; which of us could face that and NOT the mercy we want? What part of following the ACTIONS of Jesus is persecution? What part of embracing outcasts and marginalized people is causing them to be pushed farther out? Where is the sense of self-sacrifice that cost Him His life when you are busy spouting your own righteousness at the expense of someone else? He went willingly to his doom while you play the “victim card”. I’m not questioning that you think you believe, I am saying your actions do not show it.

*sigh again*

Do you own a hammer? Right now I feel like a b****rd for using one. I don’t “own” the hammer I am willing to use because, I’m using a human I love. My best friend does not have to write these words but, she is the hammer. I am willingly and knowingly USING the life of a human…and it hurts. It is coldly calculated. I have to point out that she has been abused, threatened, and cast away by people that claim love and Christianity. If they were really what they claimed to be, she and I would never have known each other. Yet, I am taking my best friend in the world, the second person I did not marry and call “best friend”, and treat her as an object used on nails. The good news is that it is harder on the nail than the hammer. I would pound flat those that would dare to stick their heads up and claim virtue. They have no reason to claim it and neither do I. I do not pretend to be better than they because, I am far from perfect. This post and the temper that flares are as much proof as the years of addiction that I survived that I lack perfection…or even coming close.

*exhale*

Look, guys, how we treat people matters. What we do to people that are not like us is what proves our Christianity, not how we act to Christians. I am not an “uber-Christian”. I am a weak, fallible, mortal, sometimes confused, sometimes angry, human. I use another human to drive my temper to write words for her. I feel guilty for doing that because it merely reinforces, if she reads this, that she is cast out. It tells her that not many people outside her community, Pagans I mean, are willing to see her for what she is not what they presume she does.

Let’s talk about her for a bit…She’s a better “Christian” than most I know. She adopted and is raising a daughter, after her kids are adults, because it is the right thing to do. She has a chronic illness and goes to work every day to make a life for her and the young lady. She is constantly physically exhausted and persists. She would give her next breath, and every one after, to her daughter. She helps people, I mean, physically does things to help. She accepts and embraces me even though my faith pushed her away. She honors and reveres her gods with nothing to gain while Christians plead and implore a God they fear. She, by the standards of her faith, “prays without ceasing”. She is kind, tender and, loving. In truth, she can be a stone b***h and highly opinionated but, given her past, that’s fair enough. I don’t know how she goes on. Yet, she persists. She lets herself be a hammer…and I love her enough to use her as one. I wish I were half the man she is a woman. I wish I were as true to my moral code as she is to hers. I wish I were as brave and tough.

*breath*

Here’s the point, when a Pagan, Aj, is a better Christian than most Christians I know, the issue isn’t that Pagan. When we regain the moral standing, quit claiming to be victims, walk our walk, and finally follow Jesus and not our stupid views of others, then we get to push people out…and it’ll still be wrong. I know God loves her. He created her to be what she is. *she’ll disagree and I ENTIRELY respect that different view* When we are able to live the standard she does, then we are all better for it. Then her world, and ours, are more worth living in and, maybe, our souls are not in question. Till then, I sometimes, worry for mine but, never for hers.

I’m trying to calm down. It hurts to use my best friend as a hammer. The word “use” itself feels wrong. The fact that I have to do it to my own faith feels worse. I don’t wish Aj had not been forced out of Christianity becuse I would not have ever known her. I just wish Chistians would act more like that one Pagan.

What Difference Does It Make?

I have a question. It’s rhetorical so y’all can just ponder it a bit. Ask yourself, “what difference does it make?” before you find something objectionable.

Look at like this, Christians, me in my past included, found “fault” with people. We see what we perceive as “flaws” or “sin” and use that as grounds to object to the whole of the person. Take, specifically, two of my closest friends. One is Pagan, the other Lesbian. I would see the first as “flawed” and the other as the personification of “sin”…Then I applied the question…

Sure, Aj is flawed. All humans are. It’s just that her faith isn’t a flaw in her and only makes a difference to me when we try to communicate concepts that seem simple to her and are hard for me to understand. In that case, Paganism isn’t the flaw. The problem lies on my difficulty trying to apply my views and mental construct…

On the other hand, Z does sin, as a Christian she would be the first to admit it. It’s just that who she’s attracted to isn’t the one that either she or I see as the sin. *editorial, I freely admit being a heretic so, object to my view as you wish. We’ll just disagree* Sin, the Christian concept applied to Christians, is an inescapable part of our condition…

Anyway, back to the original question, what difference does it make? Say, for example, I was of an inclination to object and act on my objections. That I further decided I had a right to do that. Why? Would it be worth the stress that it would cause to find fault and ways to retaliate against people that mean me no harm? What part of the kindness and love that Jesus taught does hateful rhetoric, prejudicial action, or blatant discrimination show? How would I persuade someone to see my view if, by my actions, thoughts, and words, I pushed them away? It would make a difference because I had failed, not them.

What difference does it make? A huge one, just not to you but, to them.

Dumb Question Time

I’ve written, mostly, about three major themes LBGT Rights, Religious Freedom, and dignity for women. I’ve also written about one minor but, recurring, theme, my past addiction. The question is, in the coming year, what focus? I do not see any major changes coming but, I keep thinking I’ve missed something. NO POLITICS. I try to avoid giving a left/right/libertarian bias so, I’ll avoid that. I write, as a Christian to anyone that will listen either for support or to modify their views. Please respond and I’ll take it under advisement.

Fear or Enemy?

What do you fear?
I’ll start, you can ask Aj but, Tarot scares me. I don’t understand it. I have years of conditioning against divination. I don’t really want to learn much more than that. Add Ouija boards to that list for the same reasons. My faith has taught me that they are tools of demons and the devil…
My best friend is Pagan. If you read the second line, you can figure out that it’s Aj. By all rights, I should be scared of her for the same reasons as Tarot and Ouija but, I’m not. Why? Because I know her.
*****
There’s an old expression, “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em”. What if there’s a third path. What if you don’t want to “beat ’em” or “join ’em”? How ’bout this, encourage them? That works, too. Hunh, Aj. Meaning, you don’t have to be the same as the people you love. You don’t have to do the same things. All you have to do is enjoy them doing the things they do.
*****

So, back from that digression…Just because something scares me, it doesn’t mean I have to be afraid of it. *This’ll make sense, I promise* I can not drink. Ever. If I do, the failure will be complete. It doesn’t mean I’m scared of alcohol. It doesn’t mean that, out of fear, I think it should be banned. It doesn’t mean I lash out at people that drink. It just means that I don’t.

Other differences are the same. Just because I am not Pagan and parts of what some of my friends do goes against my preferences and conditioning doesn’t make it wrong…It just makes it not right for me. That’s the odd thing about life. We can not approve of something for ourselves and think it is entirely proper for someone else. I’d no more change the Pagans I know than I’d become Pagan. It fits them like being a Heretic Christian fits me.

There is a perception that the things we fear or are different are our enemy. That is not always the truth. None of the Pagans I know are out to get me. *editorial, I don’t fear them. I just recognize their faith as different than mine* They are not waging a war against Christianity. They are just trying to live their lives in peace. The problem is that, because of a false perception on our part, we feel that we must react to a perceived threat. We think, without knowing, that we have to respond in kind to something that does not exist…

Perhaps we need to take a step back. Perhaps we need to look at our own bias and not think that we should project that on to others…Back to the top, I do fear Tarot. That makes it wrong for me. It doesn’t make it wrong for someone else. It doesn’t mean that the people I know that do Tarot are wrong. It merely means that it is wrong for me. Aj has been doing Tarot since she was 14. If there is a person that is more firmly on my side, outside of my wife and blood kin, I don’t know who it would be. If I were to fear her because of something she does, I’d remove my best friend. I may be any number of things but, I’m not stupid enough to do that.

*****

This post used Pagans and Aj as an example. You could substitute any number of other differences. LBGT/Straight or Liberal/Conservative/Libertarian are the ones that come to mind. Different does not equal enemy.

Thoughts on Political Parties and Organized Religion…

I despise political parties. I’m not a huge fan of “organized religion” or TV evangelists. The reasoning behind that set of generalizations is that they remove our need to think for ourselves. We have “dumbed down” our thought processes to the point that all we have to know is, “They told me I should be against (fill in the blank)”. Now to digress and explain…

I am a Christian. Period. I can not see a time when I will not be. I have read the Bible, more than twice, cover to cover. I have worn out a couple and written/highlighted one of those to “unreadable”…and yet, I AM capable of making my own mind up about its contents and societal implications. I am able to look at its historical context and, in light of 2000 years of change, the place it should fit now. I also am able to realize that Jesus said and acted one way and the actions and words of Paul are NOT those of Jesus. On the Damascus Road, Jesus asked Paul, then Saul, “Why are you persecuting me?” Paul merely switched the object of his anger and persecutions. *editorial, you are allowed to disagree with me if you wish but, looking at his behavior, Paul relished his anger. He was not a nice person* Jesus spoke of love, introspection, and inclusion. Paul did not. So…*next digression…*

I came to my own conclusions. I decided that “hate the sin, love the sinner” was not written down in that book. I also realize that we are not called to say, “they are going to Hell” unless we wish to be condemned to Hell ourselves. Yeah, Jesus did say that.

I find that the entire bit about women and LBGT’s only fit in the historical context of infant mortality and a society that NEEDED to reproduce in order to survive. That a male dominated society only fit during a period that needed fewer men and more women because death during child birth means that more women had to breed *sorry to be blunt* and that it only took one man to impregnate multiple women, so, the bottleneck was women, not men. Also, men had a tendency to die more often due to the violence of the times. Those conditions no longer apply. 7 billion people mean that population is no longer a survival need. Big families, in order to produce food, are not needed. In modern society those things do not apply. Jesus never spoke to them, only Paul and, again, he’s not Jesus.

In light of the call not to judge someone’s soul, I don’t. I can not. It is that easy…

Political parties, politicians, and those that presume to tell us what we should believe pander to our fears and refusal to think. They presume that we believe that we MUST be against those that are not like us and feed on and promote xenophobia. They take away our ability to cooperate. They HAVE to. If they don’t, they are unemployed. It is a popularity contest. The preacher in his on his pulpit tells you that everyone that is not like you is out to get you. The politician tells you the same. Both want your money. Both want to keep their jobs. The only way they can is to feed your fear.

I have close friends, in fact my closest friends, that do not share my gender. Yeppers, they’re women. I should, according to Paul, not treat them as equals. If you knew them, you’d find that I would be missing out on their strengths and their friendship. My wife is my partner, not my subordinate. Two of those women are Lesbians. So what, I married a woman, I agree with their decision to love women. Again, within that group of three, two are not Christian, they’re Witches, Pagan Witches. So what? My faith calls me to show and example and live my life in a manner that is worthy of MY faith, not to judge their souls, “For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” I DO NOT want the judgment I’ve earned. I want mercy. Again, within that group of three, the one that is not a witch is a Lesbian and does share Christianity with me. Yes, I believe it is possible to be both Christian and LBGT. If the argument against is is “Z is a sinner” then NONE of us may be Christian. All Christians sin, EVERYONE OF US does. It is, within the context of Christianity, impossible not to. If the argument against Kelly or Aj is “she’s a sinner” the reply is, “she’s Pagan and the concept of sin does not apply to her beliefs”.

Different does not equal evil or wrong. It is merely different. *editorial, I know this post is very similar to other posts. I don’t really care. It needs to be said over and over* When we allow a political party to dictate our beliefs, we fall in to the trap of giving away the independence that we, Americans, so prize. When we let ourselves be lured in by the idea that we alone are special, we discount the value and worth of others. When we listen to the loudest or most charismatic person that we hear, when we let flash dictate our thoughts, we lose the sight of what truly matters.

Substance is not flash. It isn’t shiny. It has “bottom” and depth. It is the result of thought, meditation, soul-searching, and work. It is the result of our own effort. It does not come with thoughts implanted by others. During the  months leading to that popularity contest next year, please think. Look at the ones that don’t merely pander to divisiveness but, are inclusive. Look away from party and to character. Look for wisdom and insight. Search out actions and not words. Then decide. Make your choices based on what you think and not what you are told to think.

That’s it. It is not too much to ask. *sigh*

The Voices of the Enemy

I decided to let the Collective Conscience speak…

Aj said this, “I took the actual Kinsey Scale test and was 0 percent homosexual. 100 percent heterosexual. With that being said, just because my personal preference is not the same sex does not mean I see anything wrong with same-sex couples or people who prefer same-sex partners. I think people are people and EVERYONE should be with exactly who they are meant to be with regardless of race or gender!” Interestingly enough, I did, too. If you read these, you know I think exactly the same way…and now you know some of why I love Aj…

Z said this, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal…..equal, not identical. Wrap your head around that. Declare your independence from your mind’s constraints.” If you read these, you know that I think that way, too…and now you know some of why I love Z…

Kelly said this, “We can accept people just as they are, we can love them, just as they are, we can offer our hands no matter who they are. If someone comes out to you, as gay, lesbian, transgender, bisexual, Pagan, Witch, Muslim, Christian, or oompaloompa THINK about THEM. This isn’t about YOU, it is about THEM. You can take time to yourself to decide how you feel, what you think, and how you’re going to move forward, but this step takes so much courage, and so much strength to take. Stop, think, think some more, then react. Initial reactions aren’t always what you want to say in this situation, it’s also not what you’re going to feel tomorrow or a week from now.” If you read these, you know I share those views…and now you know some of why I love Kelly…

These are the voices of the “enemy”. Two are Pagan. Two are Lesbian. One is straight. One is Christian. One Pagan is straight. One Christian is Lesbian. One is both Pagan and Lesbian. By all rights, they should have no reason to be accepting of me. Yet, they are the Collective Conscience. They are the reasons I am as passionate about writing this blog as I am.

Read the words that are inside of them, then look at Kim Davis and Mike Huckabee and all the cheerleader haters and decide who you would rather side with? Would you choose the ones that have distorted a message of love, the words of Jesus, or the ones that do not march in lockstep with you and, yet, will love you despite your differences?