This morning I listen to a Podcast by a friend of mine. Her subject- what will follow Christianity? The demise of Christianity has been predicted by many. And trends don’t bode well for it. Church attendance is on the decline. Rightfully so, IMO. Most churches teach not only things that aren’t useful, they are spreading poison. Lies about the nature of God, this life, the afterlife, the Bible, etc. etc. They tell people they are worthless miserable sinners that God detested so much He had to kill Himself. And, they tell you the only way you can be sure to appease this god (small g) is to follow their rules. Fortunately, there are only about 30,000-40,000 Christian denominations to choose from, so your chances of getting it right are pretty good </sarcasm>.
After many years of wrestling with my Christianity, I finally decided about two years ago to give up on trying to stretch Christianity fit what I had become. To say I’m a Christian, but I don’t believe in Eternal Conscious Torment, the inerrancy of the Bible, Penal Substitutionary Atonement, etc. etc. because untenable. I was studying Buddhism, Taoism, meditation, reading about NDEs, talking to mediums, studying what leading edge science is telling us about the afterlife and, maybe more importantly, the nature of this universe. I realized that I had formed my own “faith”, my own “religion” and it didn’t fit into any one else’s box. I went to a non-denominational church, attended a UCC church for quite a while, back to non-denominational, and now I’m at a Unity church. But, I’m not tied to any of those dogmas. I’ve studied Buddhism and I practice some of it, but I’m not a Buddhist.
When I attended the Suzanne Giesemann’s “Back To Your Center” conference a month ago I realized that Suzanne and others are teaching a new kind of spirituality. It’s a spirituality not based on faith, but based on evidence. It doesn’t require any particular practices or set of beliefs. And, the greatest commandment is what Jesus said it was- Love. If Christians acted like Jesus and taught what Jesus taught, Christianity would be a whole ‘nother thing. But, they don’t act like Him and they don’t teach what He taught. I think the word “Christian” is damaged beyond repair.
I realized I am a Brianist. I practice Brianism. It’s an ever-evolving religion that has no set practices, rituals or dogmas. It’s customized to fit me and only me. Tywana and I have very similar spirituality, even more so since the passing of Shayna, but we are not exactly alike. And, that’s the way it should be. When I was a Christian, I attempted to proselytize. I don’t do that anymore. I’m not seeking to make converts, other than to encourage each and every person I meet to be the best version of themselves they can be and to realize they are loved more than they can possibly imagine and nothing can keep them separate from the love of God/Spirit/Universe because they are that.