Tuesday, 14 January 2014

The Atheist who was allowed to stay

Today I was delighted to hear about a guy who was allowed to stay in this country on the grounds that if he went back to his home country he would be put to death because of his new found faith in atheism. Although it is not my faith, I believe that everyone has the the right to their own faith & should not be afraid to follow it, should not be forced to follow a faith that is not right for them through peer pressure. I do not agree that your religion should be determined by law either whatever your religion. As long as you live a good life, don't harm anyone & show respect to others it doesn't matter. I changed my faith, I found one that was right for me & 18 years on I'm still following it a it i right for me, I don't expect it to be right for everyone however, so this is why I am proud of our legal system & us as a nation, that this young Atheist man has been allowed to stay.
Some people may wonder why I refer to Atheism as a faith, I do so as it is still a belief system even though it does not have belief in a god. No one has yet proven categorically there is a god of any description that is scientific, a more scientific mind will believe there is not one, they should not be judged on this as I believe that they should do the same in return, but to do that we all need to learn respect.

Monday, 6 January 2014

Reflections of the Festive Period

With Twelfth Night being yesterday I can now reflect on the festive period as a whole, this years festive period has been. So the festive period 2013-14 was a bit of a strange one, I had been busier in the run up to it between normal work & chaplaincy, though this year Yule did not feel anywhere near as rushed or squeezed in around work as it has done in the past, I had plenty of time to decorate, feast & meditate, I also managed to make time to make a Witch Bottle for the house. What did infuriate me was the amount of people who asked before the Winter Solstice why I hadn't put up my Christmas decorations yet? Well my response was as follows, I'm not Christian & don't decorate the house until Yule which according to the tradition of decorating your house up for the festive period is actually early as you are not supposed to decorate your house until Christmas Eve & you take your decorations down on the 6th oft January, the day after the 12 days of Christmas have finished. Many people I know looked at me weirdly when I said I took my decorations down so late, saying that they took their decorations down the day after Boxing Day or New Years Day saying that they were fed up of them by then, to which I point out if they are fed up of Christmas before Christmas is out why are you in such a rush to put up your decorations in the first place. OK that is my festive peeve out of the way. I may not be Christian but do like to keep up with folk tradition at this time of year.
 This Christmas was more how I prefer Christmas, relaxed, there was a minor family altercation, but there always seem to be some niggle over Christmas but it lead to a more relaxed Christmas on the whole as far as timings & food went. It was also a relatively frugal Christmas with me making more presents this year than I have done before & it has been appreciated, although I do think I will have to make more chocolate fudge next year as it went down a storm as did my green tomato chutney, so it appears Christmas hampers are the way forward for me. New Years eve also cemented a friendship by having having Sean around for lunch & we swapped gifts I got a hand made dream catcher, he got some apple jam. The festive period although rushed seemed quite pleasing in the long run where people have appreciated skills & friendships & general sense of homeliness. So although I got accused of being a Scrooge for being sick of Christmas music before the day it arrived, it appears that I wasn't the Grinch either (that accolade was taken by someone else)