Posted by: webbhouston | April 1, 2009

Boudin to buddhism

I dont write about religion here very much because that isnt what this blog is about. I am not blogging for Jesus or for the Dark Lord (no I dont mean Voldemort). This is a blog for my family, my children, and my life and passions…. religion doesnt happen to be one of them.

The more I look into living a more ecofriendly lifestyle and the more that I try to infuse my children with the respect and love for the planet, the more that I realize that it is sort of like a religion.

We have what Thoreau called a hypaethral temple of sorts. It really isnt a true temple… and it really isnt a true church… it is just a respect, nurturing, and devotion for the world we live in. We admire what our world has become and we try to preserve it. I am very open with my children about what impact we have on our earth. Saturday morning when discussing animals and their sounds we talked about how the meat that we consume comes from animals. The dairy. The eggs.  We discussed how she should thank the animals involved and understand that they are part of our circle of life. She sees me pump for Calvin so she knows that milk can come from animals so I explained that cows, goats, sheep, etc. have similar breasts and thats how we get milk from them as well. She seems intrigued and we went further. She knows that cooking changes things because she helps me cook so much so we discussed how cooking made food and how veggies and fruits didnt need to be cooked to be eaten.  She had a few minutes where she was amazed at what things come from “moo cows” and I told her that we need to revere animals because they give so much to our life.

I know that this leans to a pantheistic view of life and that it involves worshiping animals and nature.. but I dont believe that it is exclusive of other beliefs that we may have. Maybe because of my own culture, knowing that my family stems from people who lived on ranches and had to work for their food in a way that is completely unfamiliar to most of us… I really want to make sure that my children know what food really is. Revering animals and nature comes naturally to me because I truly understand that the earth makes my life possible. While I dont worship in a church, my way of life does include being thankful for the forces that permit me to live my life the way that I do.  Sometimes that force is the sun. Other times it is the rain.  Our family adores rain. Not just in a “wow it cools down the heat here in the south”… but I allow my kids to play in it. Dance in it. Taste it. My children are not afraid of the rain and the wetness. My husband takes pictures and sits in awe studying the power of what our heavens have provided us.  We are truly thankful for it and watch its effects on our vegitation.

We try to eat locally, from farmers markets or Consumer Supported Agriculure shares… I know the man who grows the animals that end up on our plate. Our veggies arrive to us with dirt still firmly attached and I have been known to shake hands with the person whose hands tilled the soil that they grew in.  Kate knows that our family attemps to search within ourselves and our surroundings for sustenance.

This weekend I made her a toy snake, she asked for a toy snake when I gave her a choice. Instead of buying new filling or using new fabric, she helped me look through old fabric scraps that I had.. she picked out the scraps that she wanted me to use and she watched me sew her snake together by hand. We took an old pillow that was probably going to be retired soon and repurposed the innards of it for our snake. I used some smaller scraps for eyes and a tongue… and her snake was finished. It is made out of some black fabric with red flowers on it. It doesnt really look representative of any snake that you and I have seen.. but she loves it and she knows that we made it together.  We didnt have to buy a new toy at the store and we didnt have to buy anything to make it.

Kate loves yoga and understands peace and quiet time for meditation. We look within ourselves for peace and relaxation… we look at what we have on hand.

My hopes is that through living our life the way that we do our children will have a roadmap that will lead them to a true love for the earth that they live in.

Part of the definition of religion is a faith, a belief system… our religion doesnt involve prayers but it does involve music and art… we dont have scared texts but we do have the history of our earth and rituals and meditation. It doesnt have to do with the supernatural… but it is all about the natural. We give thanks and our practices are governed by our ethics and convictions. We do not have things that are divine, but many things in our world are sacred.

I find it distasteful to try and label ourselves…  but I also find it distateful when people say that to have ethics and beleifs you have to have an organized religion… I obviously dont believe that to be true.  We take what works for us from different systems and incorporate it into our lives. No organization needed. I have found that our family is happiest when it is allowed to grow and change… Michael and I have come a long way from the lives we used to lead and we will continue still to be dynamic in how we manifest our “faith”  but our beliefs remain steadfast.

Our way of life, or religion if you may… can be simply described as living in a way that shows respect for ourselves, our future, and our world…. and everything that encompasses that. However simple or complicated some may find that. It is us.

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Responses

  1. This blog’s great!! Thanks :).


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