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Liturgy Practicum 1: Domestic Cult Practice in ADF, Question 4, Entry 13

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Week beginning 11/06/06 - Interfaith

As I write this portion of this week's journal, I have just returned from my first Univeristy Interfaith Association meeting.

It was a very interesting experience.

Now, for some background, about four years ago, I made the following statement:

"I see interfaith debate as counter-productive to religion."

The reasons for that statement are rather varied, but in particular, it was a reaction to the various invitations to "interfaith" debate that was really an invitation to a "why aren't you Christian yet" debate, which were the only sort of "interfaith dialogues" I had ever had at the time.

Over the past three or so years, I've softened my stance on interfaith dialogue, been involved with Muslim dialogue groups, and become comfortable enough in my conversations with people to call them on things like the "why aren't you Christian yet" debate.

I serve as the primary contact for the University Interfaith Association at the Office of Information Technology at Ohio State. This particular facet of my job was one of the first things I was ever given full charge of when I started here. I never really thought much about it: it was a job task, one that I did because I had to.

But recently, I started looking into what they do. It seems that they're extremely accepting, and generally full of good people. I realized that I hadn't been treating this particular customer as well as I could have, and so I asked my boss if I could go to one of their meetings, which are open and have guest speakers.

Sara said yes, so long as I tell them I'm a representative from the campus Satanists.

Well, I didn't do that, but I did get in touch with my contact there and ask if I could show up, and where it was. He said I most certainly could, so I made the plans.

This morning, I walked in, was welcomed, and sat down next to my contact. I learned a lot about counseling from the nice lady who was speaking, and a lot about how the University deals with spirituality, religion, and religious diversity.

And I found myself wondering if I really ought to be working with them. . . more than just as their OIT contact.

There's more to come on this front, I think. New territory, new directions.

Also, in writing a prayer for Taranis, I found startling realization that the English word "Thunderer" (the translation of "Taranis") has some very onomatopoeic notions. It was a pleasure to write a prayer that I expect I may use for Taranis at my altar, particularly in times of storms or rough life-issues.

Thursday, November 09, 2006


in far-flung reaches of the heavens.
Clouds, rolling in and around,
your rumbles reaching our ears,
and we tremble at the sound.

nearing our home and our lands
bringing storms and rain and light,
covering the world in storm-clouds.
Standing on our side, win us this fight.

retreating from we who are left whole,
our land now knows your terror,
but your mighty terror defends us.
Taranis, Thunderer, none fairer.

I'm not really happy with the actual poetics of the piece. But I wasn't looking for meter or rhyme (the rhyme happened accidentally in the first stanza, and I decided to run it through). . . instead, I was enjoying the general "rumbling" that speaking the first two stanzas can provide (thus all the r's and hard sounds that start the lines, like the way thunder "crashes" and then "rumbles" on for a bit), and the retreating rumbles of the final stanza, which helps indicate that the storm is moving past, with the last line giving the thunder a parting shot.

Really, it's just fun to write and say. I'd like to come back to it at some point and re-work it so that it actually has some meter, but for now, it's good to say in front of the altar.

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