Tag Archives: religion
“ I would like to begin this edition of The Preppy Chronicles, by sharing with you my hopes and dreams and thoughts about the overall intent of this blog.
Please join me over at my sister site The Preppy Chronicles II
Welcome to this edition of The Preppy Chronicles. For those of you just joining the discussion here at the Chronicles, a brief summary of the current series. It all began April 28th 2011 during my morning meditation time, sitting in the dark, save the light of the crescent moon. I just began to cry, Weep is a better word now that I think about it for no apparent reason. Being a High WASP, I have no proclivity to weep without reason. I was exceedingly stunned as the tears flowed. Between weeping and a gut wrenching wail, I wrote the first post. The Road Less Traveled.
Through-out the next set of posts, I began to explore the deep history of my roots.
My family came to this country in 1635, I have had to do a bit of digging, but what I have discovered about my family’s history as well as, this country’s, is that there is a vast difference between those that arrived here in 1607, 1630,1635.
The three groups of sojourners had their own ideas and agendas for coming here, had their own ideas about the religious life and the civil life and how that they connected. They had their own conception of God and their own versions of the Bible, and exceptionally clear ideas about the roles that sex and marriage were to play in their everyday lives. What I believe to be of considerable importance, and I found strangely comforting, is that conformity to these roles was expected and deviating from the accepted norm had dire consequences to you and your family. By the 1770’s, the daily existence of the colonists was a blend of these three belief systems.
The stark reality of the time is that if you belonged to one of theses three groups you would be tolerated. If you were of any other religious conviction, you were not tolerated; thus, I stand by my earlier statement that this country was founded, not on the belief of tolerance but of intolerance and that the political of 1774-6 was not about religion as that was already settled in the minds of the framers.
The settlers of 1607 were of the Anglican persuasion, and the settlers of 1620 were a variety of Anglican & Protestant. The settlers of 1630 were overwhelmingly Puritan. Originally, the colonies of New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Maryland were known as “ Plantations of religion ” This meant that since you were a professed Protestant, you were welcome to enjoy your beliefs in a public manner. These Plantations welcomed Baptists as well as Quakers, Shakers, and the Amish.
What is of interest is although these people had just fled the inforced uniformity of religion, as it has been called, they eagerly to embrace it in the new world.
Why does any of this matter ?
My belief is that for me to understand the religious views that have been passed down to me my family and my church, I must understand what were the views of the time. Furthermore, I must understand the structure of the time. I need to do this because my family settled in various parts of the new world. I must explore my Southern as well as my Northern history.
I have also come to have an understanding that what God has to say concerning matters of my life and beliefs that I have held over the years, usually are in sync. There are a few areas that we diverge or at least what I have been taught and what I am discovering to be truth differ.
Again, Why does any of this matter? It matters because, we as a nation have a history. A history that has been forgotten, and been altered to suite those that want America to be this Great Melting Pot of Everything. What is missing is the proper filter of what is going into the pot.
I believe this to be truth: Ones Spiritual belief system, is directly reflected in ones political views and how you conduct your everyday life. There is an immense amount of good in America, there is also a lot of self-will run riot. The notion that one’s spiritual life has nothing to do with one’s politics would not have even been a thought process that these men and women would have engaged in.
As I delve not only into the belief systems, into the reading material of the day, namely the BIBLE. Which versions of the Bible were being used by each of the three groups. It is my hope that I will find out a bit more about my own beliefs.
I am happy to report that any crisis of conviction that I might have had, has been resolved. I am going to continue this series because, one of the main purposes of this blog is to set the record straight concerning our tribes history.
I know that this is not hard-hitting journalism, but because I as a Preppy and a WASP, I have had a bit of confusion about what is the truth and what being taught. I felt that an investigation was called for. Please understand that you do not have to embrace what you read, do your own research. What I have discovered about me through this journey, notice I did not use the term myself, because this journey is about my innermost belief system. How much am I like my family that came to these shores in 1635, and how much am I different ?
The Heart of The Preppy.
As the heart grows, so does the life. We have been talking about not just the letter of the law but also the spirit. Through-out this process of looking at what the Puritans believed and how this all applies to us in the 21st century, one must never lose sight of the spirit of the thing. Yes, man has screwed up a lot of things that GOD set forth. However, what I am beginning to see is that GOD, gave us a few basic and straightforward rules to follow in order that we humans can be and continue to be in right relationship with him. At first, I found that I was only looking at how badly we humans have screwed things up, not at what things that we have gotten right. Let me say, that although I use the term screwed up, I don’t believe that we as humans possess the ability to screw up anything that God has created. We can cause a mess, and that is why God put certain things out of our control. A perfect example is the Earth, have we messed it up, Yes, destroy it, I think not.
I do believe that we are Spiritual beings on a Human journey, God gave us a few basic and straightforward rules to follow, but that man has complicated and corrupted, most of these. Most religions, are so mangled, that they bear little resemblance to the few basic rules that God laid down.
As we move forward in this journey, I must remember, it is as much about the destination, as the journey. I must also remember, that what my ancestors believed is as much a part of this journey as what I believe today.
Why was sex outside marriage wrong? What was Gods intended purpose for sex ? What constraints have men imposed on man in the name of GOD.
We, WASPS and Preppies, have a long tradition of such behavior. I am not saying that this is right or wrong, just that it is. As a tribe, it is in our DNA, And we continue to use intolerance to suit our needs.
Most of us WASPS and Preppies are not Mother Teresa’s, we do things motivated out of a sense of duty. We have imposed our will on the masses for generations, and the masses go along with it. This is not to say, that this is a grievous thing. Rather, to admit that this is how things do, in fact, work. Once, you grasp this idea, nay, embrace it, the Puritan mindset becomes understandable. As we move into the Scriptures that the folks read in the colonies, to understand the motivation behind the concept of sex only inside marriage and the consequences of extramarital activities. Why the need for SIN and REPENTANCE and PUNISHMENT in the eye of the public and why it was essential that the leaders of a community, SIN, REPENT and be PUNISHED.
There was a method to the madness. What was their model? Was it God, or Man or a perverse combination of the two ?
Please join me over at my sister site The Preppy Chronicles II and my newest site, The Preppy Journal.
If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed. Albert Einstein.
You may ask, What does the last few posts have to do with the sex lives of the Puritans, or how does a discussion about the Septuagint or the Reformation have any bearing upon my life? Why does any of this matter? Why should it matter to me? What possible good can come from having a discourse on Sex, Politics, and Religion. Does this have a substantive bearing upon my life in the 21st century?
We are Americans, are we not to pursue Happiness, Liberty and Life its self? Is not my Happiness paramount to Liberty, is not my Happiness what Life is all about?
These are some of the questions that I have asked myself in the past few weeks. Trust me when I tell you, that this business of tearing apart all that you believe in search of the truth, is a gruesome task and is not for the weak of heart or character. It is extremely easy to find yourself in quicksand before you know it. Once you are in it there are no easy ways out. I am glad to say that I have a few folks on the other side of the quicksand that have left a rope tied to a tree, my task then is to reach it & grab hold before I sink too far. This is not only a metaphor for my experience, but also for this great nation.
There must be a balance to my life. A balance in thought and action a balance between my feelings and nothing. I wonder if nothing is a feeling. On some level, it must be or is it a tap-root that causes feelings? I digress. For me and my journey, I have no choice in this matter, the one thing that I have learned is: To survive, I must surrender to the process. It is death to my soul for me to be anyone other than who I am The same holds true for this nation. We are not Europeans, we are not Asians we are not Mexicans or Canadians.
WE ARE AMERICANS. It is about time that we remember this and start to act and live like it. So what does that mean?
That means that 235 years ago, a group of men sat down and wrote a set of ideas and principles for a new form of governance. To understand this powerful document one must first understand what they collectively held to be truth. What did they believe about religion, sex & politics? The most important question for me is, do I buy into what they believed and where did their belief system originate.
Does the belief system that the signers held to be solid, unshakable truth apply to my life and the life of this nation today? Make no mistake, the religious beliefs of the signers are deeply embedded into the documents that created this country. So, where did it all start ?
This question brings me to the understanding that I need to look at this in great detail, for their belief system was predicated on the individual and that individuals relationship to God. It is this vital relationship that determines the moral compass of the individual. Our relationship to God, determines are morals. Our morals, or values that we hold as individuals, determine the morals or values that we hold as a nation.
What does this mean for me and what does this mean for you as my readers. ( I want to say Thank You, for sticking with me. ) For my part, I must dig deep into the research of their belief system and try to extract the core and present it to you in such a way as not to be boring. If you have read down this far, without the aid of glitzy photos, (pat yourself on the back) then you are the ones that will benefit the most from my search.
Thank you for inviting me into your busy life.
Please do not forget to visit my sister site, The Preppy Chronicles II and my newest site, The Preppy Journal due out in the coming months.