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You talking to me?

It seems lately all I've been doing is ranting.  I really should put up a "nice" post but stuff has bee firing me up lately.  Today's rage de jour was an essay (won't call it an editorial) in our local newspaper.  The writer was critical of our Bishop, which in and of itself is not necessarily a bad thing.  However, this was written by someone who has been vehemently against the Bishop for years.  The writer maintains a blog soley to beat up on the policies of this Bishop and even had a countdown clock to the Bishop's retirement.  To say the writer is biased would be a gross understatment.  So I had to comment about it online.  You can see all the threads via the link below if you like:

Mind you, debate about issues doesn't really get me going much.  As long as it's friendly and as long as it doesn't get personal, then I'm fine.  I'm not out to change minds just speak mine.  Then someone posts the below (not directed to me personally, mind you):

Pippa Bianco
"A related problem is that liberals have no respect for tradition. To a liberal, it doesn't matter if a custom has existed since the dawn of Western Civilization; they are willing to discard tradition like you or I would take out the trash, if they no longer find it personally gratifying. In defending our civilization from having its very foundations undercut, then, you will once again have to reinvent the wheel, doing the work – which the principle of division of labor has taught us is best left to experts – of rehashing history and explaining, slowly and carefully, just how it is that up is up, the sky is blue, and homosexuality is against God's will.

Another common mistake is to assume that a liberal will know when he is beaten. You may think you have scored a clear victory by not only citing the appropriate authority on each...
matter but utterly humiliating the liberal in the process – and yet he will keep coming back for more punishment.

What you must understand here is that liberals have no sense of dignity. They are quite willing to be humiliated and taunted in the service of their righteousness. Crawling through slime and offal does not offend them; living the lives they do, of course, many of them are quite accustomed to it.
Another problem related to this is that liberals do not respect strength. They are innately weak and indecisive, and they instinctively work to tear down anything stronger or better than themselves. Like hyenas circling a wounded lion, they will nip and slash when you are not looking, until you finally succumb to their superior numbers. You will again hear the pathetic bleats of "fairness!" and "equality!", knocking your legs out from under you as you turn to face each new assailant."
Holy shit did I get hot!  I've been an unashamed liberal for as long as I was old enough to form an opinion.  I took this as a personal insult.  Pippa is not only saying I don't have a place in my own Church, but that I'm undigified and lower than dirt.  There are so many things wrong with what Pippa said.  I mean never mind that somehow liberals need to be battled and beaten, as if only conservatives have the "truth".
But what really riled me was this misconception that tradition should be sacred.  Hiding behind tradition is probably one of the biggest sins in my book.  Pippa sounds just like the Pharisees that Jesus warned us of.  Teaching tradition of the elders in place of the precepts of God.  Praising God with your lips when your heart is far from Him.  Such hypocracy makes me insane.
Now here's the thing with tradition and liberals.  Not to hang on semantics, but the traditional definition of a liberal (which I learned in my poly sci course in college) is one who beleive the foundation of the system is sound but that in can be improved by making changes.  That me!  One who has no respect for the system and wants to tear it down for something new is a radical.  Which I am not.  Semantics aside, the point of tradition (at least in Church context) is something that's been done for a long time that should bring you closer to God.  Traditions give us a shared experience and bring us together.  If you think about all the family traditions you may cherish, those are the ones you pass down.  Not the ones you did just because "that's what we did".
Now, in Church context, let me give you an example and you decide whether tradition is worth keeping or not.  Last December, a new translation of the Mass was sent out to the world.  It was decided in Rome that the translation from the Latin we'd been using wasn't good enough and that a more literal translation of the Latin words would be better.  Don't ask my why.  Some things were changed slightly, some things more so.  However, there was one change that totally rubbed me the wrong way.
Just before communion, we used to say "Lord, I am not worthy to recieve you but only say the word and I shall be healed."  In the new translation, we now say "Lord I am not worthy to enter under your roof but only say the word and my soul shall be healed."  Now, before you decide which is better, a little history.  Growing up I didn't have a strong faith.  Church and faith was not a terribly important thing in my parents house.  It really was Elen that started bringing me to Church.  The thing that really brought me back to my faith was the Eucharist.  And what we say just before Eucharist.  Because saying those words have deep spiritual meaning for me and make me feel close to God just before I recieve His Body and Blood.
So, if tradition should bring me closer to God, which is better?  Saying words that have no meaning to me but are "required" by the guys in Rome how tell me it's better?  Or the words that speak directly to me?  While I get the biblical reference of the not being worthy to enter under my roof, I'm about to recieve the Lord and I'm NOT worthy to recieve Him!   But He just says a word and I'm healed.  Not just my soul, but ALL of me, body, mind, emotions, AND spirit.  So should I follow what the Church says should be tradition just because they say so or should I follow the tradition that brings me close to Jesus?
Yeah, that's what I thought.


Jude said…
Praising God with your lips when your heart is far from Him.
That says it well!

And definitely following the tradition that means the most to you and brings you closer to your faith is the answer. If it is what grounds you and centers you spiritually that is what's important in my opinion.
Unknown said…
Follow your heart : o )
sydwynd said…
Jude: I knew you'd get it. People that blindly follow the "rules" stike me as lemmings. Following the "rules" because you understand them and the WHY of the rule is much more important and meaningful.

Tricia: Thanks. I do that along with following the Spirit.
Kate said…
Left you a little love...
sydwynd said…
Kate: Thanks.

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