Saturday, November 5, 2011

Janie (aka Mother Moon)

Hello and Happy Saturday!

I wish to thank Elinor Predota for her interesting interview last week. An excellent read! Thank you so much for sharing Elinor!

Today we have a new interview so please welcome Janie (aka Mother Moon). Janie is a Pagan and I know you'll enjoy her interview as well!

Here Is Janie's Introduction:

The following in my introduction: Smack dab in the center of America is where you will find me. A mother of three (plus one step daughter), grandma to three (with one on the way). A lover of animals (2 cats and one lab - plus any strays that may happen my way), nature, gardening, music, simplicity, and good times with friends, I love long conversations with others of different thoughts and such, as I believe that one should always have an open mind to what someone else may say. There is far more perspectives in the world than just mine and to think that I am the one with the only right one is pure folly. It is through our ears and our eyes that we find the answers to the questions we all ask, not through the constant wagging of our tongues.

My website/blog is as follows

1) What religion do you practice?

I am not sure what to call what I practice. I am yet to find the label to attach to myself. Yet when asked this question I usually answer: It is hard to tie myself down to one specific as I feel there are many that touch me yet none that completely explain me... I am a naturist by heart, a lover of the out of doors and all her wonder. As a friend of mine puts it : Non - specific personal paganism

2) Are you a convert/revert or were you raised within this religion? If you converted, what did you need to do to convert? And what did you practice prior to converting?

I am definitely a convert. Living in Oklahoma one is seldom raised outside the "church". In my younger days I made my rounds to the multiple denominations that resided in my tiny rural town. Settling finally on the Baptist church. Yet always having a desire for more answers to the many questions that continuously came to me. Not ever feeling that I gained a good enough answer from the leaders of the church. Although my naturalistic (druidism) beliefs were in me from a youthful age, I did not pursue them due to the teachings of the church, allowing me to think that such ideas would only land me in the pits of hell. Yet through the continual personal search for "God" and his ways I was led to what I believe now, which differs greatly from the doctrine of any denominations.

3)Within your religion are there degrees of observance (ie. Orthodox,conservative, moderate, liberal)? What are the defining differences between the degrees of observance?

If I understand this question correctly it is directed towards what I believe thus it would not necessarily be directed at other religions. If this is correct I do not necessarily think it has any relevance to my beliefs as I view these categories as levels of rigidity that one has. I believe in ones belief system as a personal journey and thus any of the labels could apply.

4)Within your religion what degree of observance are you ((ie. Orthodox,conservative, moderate, liberal) ? Why did you choose this degree of observance?

Again if I had to make a choice in regards to the degrees of observance for me in regards to my beliefs I would choose a liberal orthodox. I choose this because I feel that I am very open in regards to what I believe and what I practice yet I am also quite passionate about it. I am always willing to listen to ones views that are different from my own yet I will not easily be swayed from them.

5)What is the Afterlife within your religion? For example: what happens when a person dies? Are there places for reward/punishment? (such as a Heaven/Hell concept)

Within my beliefs, I do belief that there is something after one passes from this so called life we lead now. It is my personal belief that it is much like heaven, yet I also believe that each ones heaven can be described differently. I do not necessarily believe in an absolute reward/punishment at least not in the sense that I think most men do. I believe that we are living this daily as we go through our lives, in regards to what we choose to be a part of as well as what we choose to turn a blind eye too.

6) In your opinion, does everyone make it into heaven/paradise? If they do not, why?

It is a continual journey that one makes. Each one choosing whether to learn from lessons that are set in front of them or not to. For some I think the journey is not as long as it may be for others. And quite possibly there may be some who never make it to the end.

7) What makes your religion a good fit for you?

I do not believe in holding all people regardless of culture, heritage, environment, etc to the same ruler. I do believe in a God yet I also believe that man attempts too many times to put him into a box labeling him in the manner that fits him so that he can feel good about himself. I believe that each ones spiritual journey is their own and is a personal experience that only they can travel.

8) What are your holy days and what do you do to celebrate them?

I follow the Sabbats. There are 8 Sabbats that make up the Wheel of the Year. They are solar and seasonal in nature and represent birth, life, death, and rebirth. They are as follows: Samhain (New Year - Oct 31 & Nov 1), Yule (Winter Solstice - Dec 21), Imbolc (February 2), Ostara (Spring Equinox- March 21) , Beltain (May 1), Litha (Midsummer - June 21), Lammas (Aug 1), and Mabon (Autumn Equinox-Sept 21).

9) Do you consider people of other faiths to be your friends?

Of course. I have learned much from others with differing views and also at different points in their spiritual journeys.

10) Would you ever join people of another faith to celebrate one of their holy days? Please explain why?

I often visit and participate in others beliefs as much of my family believe differently than I. I may not partake in all the festivities or rituals that they may have though. I feel out of respect for my beliefs as well as theirs that this would be improper.

11) What are your thoughts on the burka, and Shariah Law?

I will be honest and say that I am not comfortably familiar with the Shariah Law and therefore do not feel that I can make an adequate analysis of it.;

12) Are women allowed to hold religious office (priest, minister, rabbi, iman etc) in your religion and how do you feel about it?

As I have stated before, it is a personal walk and therefore we are all priests aren't we?

13) Does your place of worship segregate? If yes, how does this make you feel?


14) How much does your religion affect your daily life and how much thought do you give it when making a decision? Does it affect in any way your decision on abortion, gay marriage, etc?

I think my beliefs affect much of my daily life and how I view things.

15) How would you react/feel if your child wished to marry outside your religion? Once again I feel that each one has their own journey to walk including my children, grandchildren etc. If they were to choose to marry outside their beliefs that is their choice. If I felt a need to convey any concern to them I would do so yet in the end the final decision is their own.

16) In your opinion, if someone is not of your faith, will they go to hell?

Goodness no. It would be a sad world if that were the case. Not sure any of us would make it

17) Who do you think is not a practicing ----- in your religion and why? ie who in the public domain claims to speak for your religion? Do you agree with them or not?

As I said before I do not affiliate myself with any specific religion so there is not anyone specific that I can say speaks for it except myself.

18) Have you ever been the target of a hate crime? Please explain.

I know that there are many cases where there have been ones who have been an obvious target or victim of such thing. The abuse is so obvious that it is impossible to not see it for all the ignorance and cruelty that it truly is. Yet I also believe that there are subtle hate crimes that occur every day. The cold stares or turned up noses from someone who does not believe as you. The whispers and such from one who perceives that they "know" what your beliefs are and since of course they are different than theirs they can not be right. I think all of us can say in some way we have been a victim of one of these

19) Do you ever feel like your religion devalues you?

No I never have

20) Does your religion give you peace of mind?

Since I have accepted myself and the beliefs and questions that have always been inside of me and quit beating myself up for not following what I was told was the "right way"; I have never been more happier or more sure of the path that I am on.

21) Do you believe in reincarnation? Why or why not?

Yes very much so. Mainly because of occurrences in my life over time as well as the simplicity that it seems to show me in regards to understanding the full circle.

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