How Religious Deists “Worship” God, Part 2

How Religious Deists “Worship” God, Part 2

The blog article prior to this discussed the two prayers that Religious Deists pray as our first manner in which RDs worship God.  Below are two other action-based ways that describe in essence how RDs honor and “worship” God.

Second, Religious Deism teaches that attending religious services and being part of a religious community is an important part of RD theology.  So, if Religious Deism does not offer religious services or have a tangible religious community at this point in its development, how and where do Religious Deists go to find appropriate these things?  The answer is wherever they feel the most comfortable and that mostly means in Judeo-Christian services and religious communities.     

So, how does a non-Christian and non-Jewish Religious Deist find strength and philosophical consistency in a Christian or Jewish service and religious community despite the theological differences?  First, we need to remember that reflection on our lives and actions is probably the most important aspect of religious service and this can be done in almost any religious environment – we are not talking about prayer per se but more so mental yoga.  Likewise, the sermons that are preached at religious services usually deal with social or liturgy issues related to how we live our lives and Judeo-Christian morality issues can be adapted to Religious Deism philosophy in most cases very easily.  And, as mentioned in the previous blog article, with regards to Christianity, RDs say a modified version of the Our Father, the most important prayer during Christian services, somewhat ironically called “The Lord’s Prayer”.    

However, there is another important issue that we have to consider, related to how RDs approach this challenge in terms of the respect they must have for these other religions, in general and by not trying to challenge or change the beliefs of these religions.  Essentially, this is something that should not be terribly difficult for most RDs since we are not evangelistic in nature and place action high above any dogma.  In essence, RDs need to make this happen by exercising the Judeo-Christian virtues of patience and humility and the cardinal virtues of temperance and courage.   

For those of us who have been raised in the religion that we are affiliating ourselves with in this case, some things like singing and service rituals will come very natural and actually be comforting.  And, for instance, RDs can take Christian liturgy and transform it in my mind into de facto deist liturgy by thinking “God” when the priest or the congregation uses the words Lord, Jesus, Christ, Savior or similar terms.  And, since in a very real since Christians believe that Jesus is God, taking this point of view is almost compatible with the Christian view of God.   And, in Jewish services, without the figure of Jesus, this transformation should be even easier.  

It is also important to remember that the RD creed states that while we do not consider the Bible to be the word of God, it nonetheless has many basic moral teachings that are compatible with Religious Deism.  In fact, I would even say that people baptized in the chosen religion can and if they feel comfortable maybe should continue to receive communion during services, allowing themselves to see this as receiving God.  And, in the case of Christianity, since the body and blood symbolisms are related to Jesus who is considered God, making this mental adjustment can be done in a way that neither violates Religious Deism theology nor mocks or challenges the Christian religion we are worshiping at. 

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