What do you believe in?

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  • :D


    Animism is treating everything as if it were alive (its also described as the belief that each thing has a living spirit, but that is misleading in the anthropological sense).


    Children do that all the time. Talking to their toys etc etc Or in my case having indepth conversations in a made up language with all the toiletry bottles in the bathroom :S That was in addition to my cuddly toys being alive, and all the rocks and flowers and everything else. Actually, having that belief (not the toiletry bottles!) would lead to a lot more respect I imagine. Every living and non-living thing having it's own life essence....


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    Archetypal Polytheism is Jungian "religion" - where deities are considered to be aspects of the personality rather than "beings" in any sense.


    So a religious psychology?


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    Pantheism is the belief that the universe itself is, literally, God.

    Pantheism, from the Greek for All is God, or something like that. I did know that one :)


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    Polytheism is the belief that parrots are gods.


    :lol: What if it's an ex-parrot? ;)


    :)[/quote]

  • but maybe the patti smith quote point was tha some people *beileve* that?


    Maybe they do, but its a snubbing comment and please lets not have another thread descending into anti-christian comments. :rolleyes: The thread is about what you do believe, not what you dont. :)

    "The only rules that really matter are these: what a man can do and what a man can't do."

  • it was not meant to be snubbing, nor anti-christian.
    nor did i say it was my belief or disbelief, i meant that it could be true of some people.
    belief can be in anything.

  • peeps, my patti smith :worthy: comment was not related to that particular quote at all, just that patti smith is awesome.


    that's why i pointed out that it was OFF TOPIC.

    The trouble with quotes on the internet is that you never know if they are genuine - Abraham Lincoln

    The post was edited 1 time, last by Zee ().

  • it was not meant to be snubbing, nor anti-christian.
    nor did i say it was my belief or disbelief, i meant that it could be true of some people.
    belief can be in anything.


    Making a point of "Jesus didnt die for my sins" is a blatant dig in a thread that is otherwise ticking along nicely. If Jesus doesnt figure in someone's spirituality then its needless to mention him.

    "The only rules that really matter are these: what a man can do and what a man can't do."

    The post was edited 1 time, last by Coyote ().

  • Children do that all the time. Talking to their toys etc etc Or in my case having indepth conversations in a made up language with all the toiletry bottles in the bathroom :S That was in addition to my cuddly toys being alive, and all the rocks and flowers and everything else. Actually, having that belief (not the toiletry bottles!) would lead to a lot more respect I imagine. Every living and non-living thing having it's own life essence....


    Indeed. It is quite a common perspective in some indigenous religions.


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    So a religious psychology?


    Sort of, ish :S


    Jung's theory was that we have a common form of consciousness made up of common "characters" which he called archetypes. Archetypal polytheism sees the deities of antiquity (and today for that matter) as archetypes in the unconscious mind which, although they can be interacted with as seperate persons, are really part of your psychological make-up.


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    :lol: What if it's an ex-parrot? ;)


    Pol-atheism:p

    "The only rules that really matter are these: what a man can do and what a man can't do."

  • personally i think jesus ROCKED, I just think it's a shame he was vastly misunderstood and misinterpreted. but he IS ACE :D lovin' the JC from over here :D x

  • Best bit of spiritual advice..Be excellent to each other :D



    Cant beleive you lot missed this gem of a film quote from Scar!!!! and Bang on too:clap::thumbup:


    The non-doing of any evil,
    the performance of what's skillful,
    the cleansing of one's own mind:
    this is the teaching
    of the Awakened.
    (Therevada in a nutshell;))

  • wow, that thread grew since i chimed in earlier. muddled my brain.


    a bit o background....i was raised agnostic, left to make up my own mind.


    got into chritianity through brownies at 8, chose to get christened then. started singing in a church choir at ten, i was confirmed as able to take communion at 12, all my own choce, got batised (full imersion) at 18 when i was full on evangelical christian. cant get much more into the christian church than that bar being a minister, lol.


    Now....i am most decidedly not any of those things.


    I have always had a scientific brain. i never believed in creationism, always intergated darwinian evolution into my beliefs, as i knew that 5000 years ago...people just didnt have any other way to explain the worlds existance. i seemed to marry science and christianity for a long time. When i fell pregnant with my son and was suddenly no longer particularly welcomed at either of my churches....(ahhhh sinful fallen woman...shun her shun her. yes really, the evans just cut me off, and even the anglicans got a bit shitty, tho i did ignore them and go sing in the choir 8 months preggers anyway) i began to question more and more and eventually me belief in a supernatural deity fell away and suddely i felt like i understood a hell of a lot more.


    i believe religions grow from the percieved wisdon of their time and place. back in the day, not a lot was known about the universe, now we know of energy and matter, atoms and particles and sub atomic particles and their spin and how it can effect another miles away all these fantastic things that are real and yet can seem to be beyond understanding to most.


    i belive that matter is what we see and feel and are made of. energy is what gives us life. when someone dies their 'spirit' if you will, a piece of energy kind of cut off from the whole while that individual lives , returns to the whole to be a part of the universe once more, like pinching off some playdough, then squishing it back in.


    i believe you can connect to that whole, reach out to it with your energy and link up, like a spark jumping a gap, i feel it when im sat in nature, doing tai chi helps me feel that, reaching out to another life and loving it is a powerful way to do that for me. i dont believe there is any intent behind it, any higher power other than what life collectivly can do if it coopperates.



    I celebrate some pagan holidays, as i love to mark the turning of the years, and give thanks in my own way for seeing onother change in the seasons out. i want to learn more about them, cos i feel an affinity with something that to me, has grown up to honour nature, which we are part of, and without which we would not exist.


    i also believe there are things i dont understand fully, and may never, but im not uncomfortable with it, i dont seek to know all, i just trust myself and my intuition as sarah has said. sometimes i know, just know,things, i dont need to know why. i sense stuff, i can heal with my hands sometimes, whether its energy, reiki or what, i dunno, iv've done it sonce i was a child. me and my mum call it 'omming', lol put my hands over where she hurts and it eases, and she does the same for me....i have no idea why this works, on her and other people, maybe it a placebo effect...but i dont care. i dont have to justify it to anyone, its just part of me and my way of life.


    for me, sex has a spiritual signifigance too. not all the time, lol sometimes its just for fun, but when i am in love with someone, and when its really right, there s an energy like no other. its as much a celebration of being alive as it is about physical pleasure. i can get higher from that physical and mental connection than i can with any drug, in intertwining myself with someone i connect with deeply on a mental level as well as a physical, i feel at one with nature in the most viscreal way i have yet to experience.



    woah, essay alert. well done if you got this far, lol. still dont think im explaining too well but here goes nothin, lol

    Turned on, tuned in, loved up, trippin out, freaky on the outside, shiny in the middle.

  • very interesting topic.

    all I believe is I live & I die, I see myself as equal to everything as I'm just another bunch of atoms on this planet , I need food , warmth , shelter and co-operation and companionship from another living creature.

    this year I think I am going to do a 7 days and 7 nights meditation for the expirience.

    I am not spiritual or religous , I am just a human who fully understands that it is my original nature and perfect design to exist as in harmony with the earth as possible in everyway.


  • And there was I thinking Elliott had converted you ;)

  • like you say it's very interesting to see what other peoples beliefs are and I have worked mine out to be very simple , I believe in the goodness of mankind and that everyone has the ability to see how to live in peace with one another sharing everything, so no one has to suffer or fear but the only way to make it happen is by sacraficing the way you live and living completely ideally to the extreme.

  • Woh, can't believe I read through all of that! Really interesting though.


    I spent a lot of my childhood trying to believe in something as I was tought that it was right to belive in god etc. I then looked at other paths but was never able to truely feel anything spiritual or religious (as much as I tried as a lost lonely teen)


    I don't see myself as spiritual at all now. I think science and logic has always played a huge part in my thinking that I just can't believe in anything that I can't see or can't be explained in a scientific or logical way.

  • I've referred to myself as a pantheist for many years now and interestingly there are several different definitions of what a pantheist is.


    Of course, I agree with all of them...

  • To me there is no one definition of spirituality... There are differing types which depend person to person... To me its a state which takes you to a higher level beyond our normal existence.

    My way of spirituality is through beauty in nature.. mountains, oceans, stars, skies, forests etc...... well that and some nice fluffy ambient music......

    'You have not seen a real women, untill you have seen a beautifal hippy girl dancing bare foot in a field'


  • It's just personal to me... it's my personal relationship with the earth and the universe... sometimes I understand different elements of it in the form of spirits, and might even describe them as Gods or Goddesses. I recognise different entities (like, for example, a rock or a tree) as possessing a character and spirit of their own... but ultimately, all of those individual spirits (including mine) are a part of the Whole... not really the whole *something*, just wholeness, full stop. That might not make a lot of sense to anyone else when I put it into words. It's a bit like what Coyote said about words carrying the meaning like a sieve carries water :S


    I'd say this comes very nearly to the beliefs I hold. My beliefs are quite personal, and I don't often share them with people, unless directly asked. Personally, I feel there is an energy/shared spirit that is within everthing/everyone. I wouldn't necessarily say this is a single or multiple Gods or Goddesses, but just a collective energy, that it is important to be in tune with. When we harm someone or something, we are hurting that energy. When we love, we are respecting it.


    Our universe is so vast, there are still whole galaxies that have yet to be discovered; so I definitely don't know what might be 'out there'. But I think that the same energy/spirit that is within things here on earth, is shared throughout the universe and is possibly fluid throughout time and space. Possibly spirits from the past and future are here in the present as well, as time is more elastic not rigid.


    I know it all sounds a bit 'fluffy', but it's what makes sense to me.


    Religion doesn't do it for me. There is too many rules, and inconsistences amongst most religions, and that's not to mention how religion is used as a tool to control people. However, I feel everyone should be able to practice the beliefs they choose to practice, so long as they aren't harming anyone.


    And yes, what Scarlett said about being excellent to others. I think the key to human relationships is love and understanding, and if you can have those, then you will be more at peace within yourself.



    This thread is really very depressing.


    Why? It's a long read, but I've found it quite interesting. I think it's brilliant that one group of people has so many different beliefs and ideas; and so far no one is arguing about them.

  • I may be wrong here but surely it should be those of our species who believe things that fly against all logic are going to end up fucked, extinct and those like your good self will be the type that pushes on through with the power of logic etc etc and are the dominant in the species by using it's brain the most productively.

  • I may be wrong here but surely it should be those of our species who believe things that fly against all logic are going to end up fucked, extinct and those like your good self will be the type that pushes on through with the power of logic etc etc and are the dominant in the species by using it's brain the most productively.

    Sadly, it seems to me that irrational beliefs are the norm. Not just the big ones - god and religion - but also the small ones. People are very good at convincing themselves to believe what they want to believe.

  • Because if apparently intelligent humans are capable of holding profoundly irrational beliefs that fly in the face of all logic, reason and evidence, then as a species, we're completely fucked.


    just think of the art,political belief systems and literature that came out of people having irrational beliefs (as you call them) .....Science is not the answer to everything and has caused just as much hatred as any religion...
    The world would be a cold place without religion/spirituality....


    The standing stones that you so love to photograph came from the minds of spiritual people and the ideas (irrational beliefs) that they had:pp

  • just think of the art,political belief systems and literature that came out of people having irrational beliefs (as you call them)

    As did war and suffering.


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    .....Science is not the answer to everything and has caused just as much hatred as any religion...

    I'd dispute that.


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    The world would be a cold place without religion/spirituality....

    I agree. Spirituality doesn't require belief in the irrational.


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    The standing stones that you so love to photograph came from the minds of spiritual people and the ideas (irrational beliefs) that they had:pp

    Allegedly. ;)

  • I have been sitting on the sidelines enthralled by this discussion and a few questions come to mind.


    Do we recognize or acknowledge the spiritual life, and is it a factor in who we are? By the spiritual life, do we mean the life of thought and reflection and literature, or the life of religion? It's a different question.
    The spiritual dimension in terms of religion. Is that at all a factor?
    For me, it's not. I am a child of the Enlightenment. I think irrational belief is a dangerous phenomenon, and I try to consciously avoid irrational belief. On the other hand, I certainly recognize that it's a major phenomenon for people in general, and you can understand why it would be. It does, apparently, provide personal sustenance, but also bonds of association and solidarity and a means for expressing elements of one's personality that are often very valuable elements. To many people it does that. In my view, there's nothing wrong with that. However, I am tempted to suggest that this may be a naive interpretation. My view could be wrong, of course, but my position is that we should not succumb to irrational belief.
    My poor understanding is that Buddhism rejects the concepts of God and Soul, features which define a religion for many people, and places great emphasis on self-transformation through the practice of meditation. This has led some to question its status as a religion.
    The Abrahamic religions like Christianity, Islam and Judaism are monotheistic - believing in only one god - but Buddhism denies the existence of a Supreme Being and creator of the world. This has led some to label it ‘atheistic’ but it has been suggested that Buddhism might demand a new category – that of the ‘non-theistic’ religion, a religion without a God and it is not alone in this. Other Eastern belief systems such as Confucianism, Taoism and Jainism also deny the existence of a single God.

    Arguably it is the metaphysical aspects of Buddhism that make it a religion rather than just a set of ethics, psychology or a philosophy. Ideas such as karma and rebirth which existed in India before the Buddha are key concepts in his teachings.
    Karma, which is the accumulation of good or bad ‘merit’ through moral choices is what determines the circumstances of an individual’s rebirth.
    So, if we are not going to allow this thread to degenerate into merely juxtapositioning Christianity with the 'lesser' religions, and if we are to return to the original question of what is spiritual on a personal level then, I would suggest that the question itself is both unanswerable and pointless.


  • ow, my brain hurts. had to read that twice. lol.


    irrational belief is dangerous...if a person is acting on it in a way that could cause harm, to themselves or others....defining 'harm' is hard though. if i believed i could fly, and tried it from the top of a building....then it would be dangerous, if i believe that my spirit could fly when i reached an intense state of meditation, and just enjoyed that belief....well who does it hurt? who is to say that that experience did not exist for ME, it doesnt have to exist for anyone else.


    some people can cope with the world on surface level, with no 'frills', others need to believe there is something more to keep them alive and hopeful. i am a realist, i know that some of the things that i experience seem more signifigant that perhaps they are, i know that ifi try hard enough i can come up with perfercly logic explanations for all of the slightlly fluffy stuff that i have done and sometimes still do, it works for me just thae same however i view it. but i dont let my insights affect anyone else and thats the key thing, if your beliefs include the neccesity to convert others, or remind them how sinful they are for the way they are (hmmmm bisexual christian girl comes out to pastor and gets lecture on how i have a demon in me.....yeah) then you need to be able to prove them....not just in a ....well i have a personal relationship with jesus therefore he must exist type way, but in a way that leaves no doubts, and as far as i know nothing can do that, not science, religion or spirituality.


    all this is personal, it about how people view the world, therefore to me it is not pointless.

    Turned on, tuned in, loved up, trippin out, freaky on the outside, shiny in the middle.

  • i contend that most religious belief stems from an inability to accept or understand that the simple truth of existence is just 'being'. there is no 'purpose' since purpose is desire and desire is attachment and attachment can only bring suffering. i'd recommend anybody to read 'the wisdom of insecurity' by alan watts.


    i'm generally somewhat wary of propounding my half-baked understanding of buddha dharma for fear of not doing it justice and coming across as cretin in the process, so please take it with a pinch of salt. :o

    The trouble with quotes on the internet is that you never know if they are genuine - Abraham Lincoln


  • irrational belief is dangerous...if a person is acting on it in a way that could cause harm, to themselves or others....defining 'harm' is hard though. if i believed i could fly, and tried it from the top of a building....then it would be dangerous, if i believe that my spirit could fly when i reached an intense state of meditation, and just enjoyed that belief....well who does it hurt?

    It hurts all the people who suffer from the irrational beliefs of others. Why on earth would you not advocate reason and logic?

  • Reason and logic are wonderful tools of the conscious mind and some wonderful leaps forward have appeared to the majority illogical and unreasonable.

    For me the question is what in us watches the discerning mind?