Friday, March 27, 2009

Never Argue About God

I found something I really like in "Eat Pray Love" a book by Elizabeth Gilbert.

It is on page 241. Since this is a non-Fiction book her Balinese Medicine man in Ubud, Bali is quoted Begin quote.

----Some people like to argue about God." "Not necessary," he said, (ketut, the medicine man) "I have good idea, for if you meet some person from different religion and he want to make argument about God. My idea is, you listen to everything this man say about God. Never argue about God with him. Best thing to say is, 'I agree with you.' Then you go home, pray what you want. This is my idea for people to have peace about religion." end quote.

I fully agree with Ketut because I grew up in a minority religion, in a mystical Christian Cult. Though I separated from this cult formally in 1969, I still believe that spiritual and religious beliefs are extremely personal and individual. Out of respect to every individual I usually choose not to argue with people about religion unless someone says something like, "God told me to kill this person or these people." If I ever met someone like that it becomes a whole different issue and necessary to pursue even if it is with mental health professionals to help that person. I have not been in this kind of position since my early 20s so for this I am grateful.

Whether one's beliefs are religious, spiritual, humanistic, atheistic or agnostic or even completely unknown to me, I have found that honoring someone's beliefs to be important even in a humanistic sense as long as that belief doesn't include harming others or themselves physically.

Many of you might find yourselves Only around people who share all your beliefs. However, here in California people you meet might believe almost anything, especially in coastal areas like San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco Bay area and further north to Eureka and Arcata and even Ashland, Portland, and Seattle all seem to be this way too. So, I guess one could say that the entire western coast of the United States has people that may have european, North American, South American, Pacific Ocean or Asian Beliefs. In some ways there is more of an international flavor religiously and spiritually to the West Coast of the United States than any other place I've ever been except maybe Hawaii.

Though I have found the East Coast of the United States and Europe to also be International in their beliefs, they also tend to be more traditional, whereas people on the West Coast's tradition is to be Experimental. By having one's tradition to be experimentalism as in life on the West Coast of the United States, the level of diversity can really become amazing!

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