I just ran across a quote from the book of Mark that pretty much sums up why I consider myself to be a Pagan.
“He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do. And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition.” —Mark 7:6-9
I have been in the presence of God, and I fully believe that he, she or it exists. In my short life, I have never doubted the existence of God. And when I say “God”, I use that word in a generic sense, not in reference to a Christian god, or a Muslim god, or a Jewish god. I don’t believe human beings are aware enough to conceptualize the full existence of God. We’re like ants trying to describe an elephant. And when I refer to God in the masculine, referring to “him”, it doesn’t mean that I think God is male. It’s just a word I’m comfortable with. These words – “God” and “him” and “he” – have no meaning when you or I are trying to refer to or describe the Divine. These words are for us and for our own comfort. They don’t help one bit in describing the actuality of God.
I’ve gone through all that just to state where I’m coming from. I believe in God. I don’t believe in men. Therefore, there are no human constructs that I will ever place my total faith in, and by that I am specifically thinking of any form of organized religion. If one good man conceptualizes the ultimate truth of the Universe and the true nature of God, by the time those concepts have passed beyond him to other people they have become corrupted. Organized religion is about power, and human beings are attracted to power.
It is the traditions of Man that I reject, not God. Some of the most treacherous people I have met in my life are those who most claim to be the most righteous. That says all I need to know about organized religion. It’s comforting to know that right there in The Bible is a confirmation of everything that I believe where God is concerned.