OrthoPraxis: Celtic Practice In The Twenty-First Century: Tolerance: Is It Me, Or Have We All Become More Intolerant?


And, so he corrected me. ‘No, you’re doing the ritual all wrong. Do as I do!’, he said. And, I looked on, knowing that there was no right or wrong way of doing it, but only that ones intentionality was all important. But, he was so confident in his error, he actually convinced himself. I’m laidback about these things, even though I’ve been involved in ceremony and ritual for thirty years (my, has it really been that long?), and my silene convinced him even more!

But, why so intolerant?

I’ve read with interest, and now to the point of exhaustion, the debate about whether the USA athletes should sit or stand for their national anthem. If you agree they should stand, so the post/meme declares, type ‘yes’. I know it’s a real issue, and important to some people, but sometimes, just sometimes, isn’t there a time to ‘think’ ones thoughts without finding the need to voice them? And, is that the most pressing issue of the day? There are people starving in the world, people dying in wars, and even in America there are huge numbers involved in gun crime deaths – some 265 people were shot by children, alone, in one year! But, it seems the geographical position of ones rear is more important it seems.

But, why so intolerant?

“Think for yourself and let others enjoy the privilege of doing so too.”  Voltaire,

I almost wept yesterday. The online post/memes I had come across were promising me blessings from God if I typed ‘yes’ and/or cut and pasted the meme. One actually implied a threat if one didn’t comply, because ‘Jesus knows who is typing ‘amen’ and who isn’t’. Oh, it wasn’t the post/meme that caused me to almost weep, but the hundreds of Christians who had, sadly, typed ‘amen’ in response.

Maybe, then I’m the intolerant one?

After all, if people want to type ‘amen’ to that they can do so. Ofcourse they can. It is there right to choose to do so. But, the cause for almost-weeping was that they did it! I cannot believe that God, Spirit, the Source of All works in such a manner, and it upset me to think that those people did! That’s not religion, is it? Not spirituality? Am I wrong to conclude that is resembles mere superstition? I read somewhere, that we can do all things….but not all thing are helpful. I worry that those who restrict themselves to a god of memes, may miss the God who loves them, unconditionally.

“Everything is permissible,” but not everything is beneficial. “Everything is permissible,” but not everything is edifying.” 1 Corinthians 10.23. The Book

As a Druidic-Christian (and admitting that will get me into trouble in some quarters), and with a broad range of friends from pagan, Druids, Hindu, Muslim, Christian backgrounds etc, I get the feeling that we’re all a wee bit too self-opinionated, too willing to claim our rights and yet so wanting people to be tolerant of us, but we’ve become intolerant of others and their opinions. Am I wrong? Overly sensitive?

Christian, Jew, Muslim, shaman, Zoroastrian, stone, ground, mountain, river, each has a secret way of being with the mystery, unique and not to be judged”. Jalaluddin Rumi

What do think? What are the views of a latter-day Celt, Christian, Druids etc in these matters? And, how do we restore respect and tolerance?

Thích Nhất Hạnh, a Vietnamese Buddhist monk and peace activist talks about ‘grounded’ (or is it ‘earthed’) Buddhism, and by that he means a spirituality that is living and active in the world, by doing some practical good. It’s about respecting others. I like that. But, even he gets opposition.

“All you need is love.” The Beatles

Why are some so intolerant? Is it fear? Arrogance? Not understanding others? Not willing to understand others? When it comes to some French officials declaring that some women are over-dressed on the beach, we have to ask: Have we all moved towards the intolerant end of the spectrum, and if so how do we move back, practically, in what we say and do in the world, in our local communities, in our homes?

“The primary philosophical posture of Druidism is one of love and respect towards all of life – towards fellow human beings and animals, and all of Nature.’ From http://www.druidry.org

Meanwhile, I’m going to continue with the ritual, the one I mentioned earlier, which was for global peace.

  • Oh dear. Mea culpa. Apologies for the banner/photo misspelling of the word ‘practice’, and for getting the wrong century LOL


8 thoughts on “OrthoPraxis: Celtic Practice In The Twenty-First Century: Tolerance: Is It Me, Or Have We All Become More Intolerant?

  1. You make interesting points and I believe valid ones. However, people as a rule are not tolerable to different. As far as the meme, many of those are scams to get your information for later. I scroll right pass them. Facebook needs to remove them from their newsfeeds. Yes, it is similar to superstition rather than spiritualism.


  2. Yep. I’ve seen an increase in intolerance as well. It seems as if, with the rise of *certain* political figures, people feel more free to express intolerance and eve hatred in ways that they might not have done previously. It’s a shame. But all we can do is keep doing our thing, whatever that is, and carry on. I think what we’re seeing is a push-back against an increasingly open and tolerant world, by people who are still living in fear of the “other”. I believe and hope that it will fade, and we can move on as a global society.


    • I agree, Ryan. By each aware/enlightened person being there, working away, sharing etc, good things will happen and intolerance will be reduced….making way for love and acceptance. I think you’re right, the intolerance seen lately is a backlash. Three steps forward and two back….but progress is made. It’s a backlash to great things happening that are happening and which will gain momentum – what sme call the Great Turning.

      Liked by 1 person

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