The World Would Not Be the Same Without Influences
Our world is full of many different religions. Many have different aspects on what they think god(s) is/are. What makes one more right than the other? Some believe the more followers and the more power they have makes it right. This is the point of view that many Christians in the past have viewed things. Now that more religions have gained more followers and Christianity has lost the control of large countries along with the ability to influence these countries, they have gotten used to the new world order. Some are still not going down without a fight, like many of the Fundamentalist groups like the Christian Coalition. Just reading quotes by their founder scares the crap out of me.
Some places around the world do not follow this way of thinking. For example, the Bible Belt in the southern part of the USA. One thing that I have witnessed while being in this location, is that if one goes to church every Sunday, then no matter what they do the rest of the week, they will be saved. The responsibility for one's actions is not taught here, but more of a responsibility to be a follower every Sunday, or even other days of the week it seems.
Why be a follower of someone else's thoughts when you can actually do what you want and control your own life without some other person's ideas getting in your way. Some of the greatest holidays that Christians celebrate at their churches are stolen from previous cultures and brought entirely out of context to be of their own holiday. Why celebrate something that isn't even from your own religion? Ask a Christian why (s) he celebrates Pagan holidays like Yule (Christmas) or Easter (Ostar/Spring Equinox)? Some will try and prove you wrong, and a couple may know it as truth, but still follow the fake holiday tradition.
It is hard to make up your own religious ideas, so one would steal/borrow from other cultures. But the thing that I hate most is when there is no disclaimer or explanation by the religion of where they got it. One can make a note of how funny it is that we all worship the opinions of people and then maybe some facts thrown in to make a few more believe in it. A lot of the things that make a religion take off quickly is by incorporating some other popular religious ideas, a lot of the Christian ideals were built off this model.
This is why Christianity took Pagan holidays; they also took various moral codes, even put a Pagan god, Green Man, in some of their churches. I am not trying to say that Pagans are what Christianity came from, but it is one of the many that influenced it.
Wicca is also another religion that has been influenced by many different religions and beliefs, which are mostly from various pagan or other Nature Based Religions. They take many of the Shaman, Druid, Native American, and other religious groups to try and make a religion geared towards themselves with nature. Some argue that it has been around for hundreds of years, but the majority believes it is a very modern religion taking ideas from religions that are older than a hundred years.
Modern Satanism was mostly influenced by the teachings of Aleister Crowley. This brought along Magick and Occult topics that gave a spark to Anton LaVey's thoughts upon making his own religion. Crowley's teachings also helped the foundation of Wicca by influencing Herald Gardner, who is one of the first ones to bring back old nature traditions through Wicca. Without Thelema, Aleister Crowley's religious/philosophy, it could be said that Modern Satanism and Wicca would not have gotten their jump-start or even would be founded.
The influence of different religions brings upon newer religions that try to take the best of what is around them combined with some of their thoughts and ideas. It seems that people dislike the same old thing and inevitably will doubt/question their religion, usually starting their own or giving up on it totally. Throughout the years we have seen this happen from the ancient Egyptians up to Modern Satanists. Many have also tried to look back at the past religions that eventually died out and try to resurrect the ideas of that period.
Some of the ideas came from the Celts, Egyptians, Romans, Vikings, and other
past civilizations. The foundation of America was built upon some of the ideals
of the Roman Empire. We all look into the past and see what has happened, only
taking what seems best for us at a certain time. If our world civilizations
never kept their history written down or orally past down, think of all the
stuff we would be missing. There are some things we wish we knew of, like the
mysteries of the Mayan's disappearance or the mystery of Stone Henge.
©Copyright 2001, 2002, Cybermr and A Failure to End Boredom.