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Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Letter to the Editor




Recently I have had some inquiry about the letter that I had written to the editor of our local newspaper back in January 2013, and I would like to share it once more on this blog. This letter resulted in the gathering of a variety of people looking for something outside of the religious norms of the community. It brought people together, but at the same time drew people apart. as you can imagine the letter was not well RECEIVED by some and led to...lets just say, Im going to hell. If you have not read this before, give it a read and Let me know what you think. I would love to hear your opinion, Im sure it can't get any worse than being CONDEMNED to eternal damnation. :)                                                                                                                                            


CALLED TO QUESTION

WEDNESDAY JAN 30, 2013     PHILIP A


To the Editor;

There is no doubt that we live in a community that has a large religious populace. Of this, I have no problem, however, a problem arises (At least for myself, and I am sure that there are others), when members of this populace feel the need to forcefully convert everyone to his or her own personal beliefs and/or dogmas. You may have encountered the ever-popular questions of "Where do you go to church?" or "Are you saved?" This often occurs through door-to-door visits, tracks left on windshields to face-to-face encounters on our streets, homes and work places. These well meaning peoples, at times, stop at nothing, for this is their "calling". Don't get me wrong, I am fully aware that everyone is guilty of this, in one way or another, religious or not.

Most of us, if not all, have grown up in a culture of answers. The modern era was one of exactly that, answers, and with it came rules. Rules and answers are not to be questioned and if questioned, only allowed to go so far. Obedience was, and is, of the upmost importance. To question is a sign of disobedience, defiance and weak faith. 'Keep the rule and the rule will keep you', it has been said. Authority figures such as parents, police, clergy and political leaders with everything they represent, are the last word. However, societies, religious establishments, institutes and families that have all the answers and are void of questions, are, often, void of possibility.

Within the last century, modernity, with all its answers, has had to face some very difficult questions that have arisen along side of and with post-modernism. The answers we were once given have lost their merit. The unquestionable is now questioned more then ever.
The loudest voice is most often heard, and we have indeed heard our fair share. The loud voice of one will mute that of another and I am left wondering, what of the muted voices? Where might they be heard? Where are the perspectives of the others?

It is for this reason that "Called To Question" has been given its birth. Called To Question, multiple evening events, invites a variety of guest speakers to share their own perspectives, philosophies and views on differing topics from atheism-theism, evolution-creation, faith-reason, war-peace, chauvinism-feminism, love-hate and the list goes on. The evenings are an opportunity for members of the community to share in on and take part of authentic dialogue, a chance to question ones own beliefs, regardless of what they are. To understand that there are more ways to think, believe and have faith, then what may, most popularly, be presented to us.

Possibility is a freeing concept. Instead of giving answers, Called To Question provides an opportunity to ask questions and broaden the mind's horizon.

If you are interested in having a topic presented or attending an event, please contact me atcalledtoquestion@gmail.com. Look for ads of upcoming events around town at local retail stores or in your local newspaper.
Philip A.
Founder and Director of Called To Question


4 comments:

Kmarie Audrey said...

I still don't fully comprehend why this was such a huge deal...it's just stating facts and putting out an invitation. I guess I see things too logically sometimes:)
The whole point of your evenings is to have someone speak their life story or something that is their passion or belief system...of every type of person from conservative to liberal as long as they are merciful and put love and relationships first...and then whomever attends listens and learns about other beliefs...not to convert or change their own but instead to consider and have questions...to rethink how they relate to other people who belong to other systems or to come away considering the speakers story...in that I do not get why it seems controversial or that it makes people afraid to be put into the lime light of attendees because why would others judge that or consider it a bad thing? It's not about taking everything the speaker says but instead allowing for questions about different ways of living and BEING with others...
Its about the journey together of acceptance and relationship despite differences ...about considering questions over answers that tear apart...
I think it is a noble and brave thing and yes, it was very brave of you to set boundaries on those who judged and spoke to you harshly for using free speech and press to invite people who may feel alone...bravo. I am glad I am married to you.

Philip CalledtoQuestion said...

@ Kmarie

That is exactly right, my dear. I could not have said it better. You are so wise. :) Thanks for the encouragement and I am glad I married you also.

Trish said...

Hey. Just shared your letter with Alex. Said he'd love to sit in your discussion group if he ever gets into town-Canada for that matter. Is this an open blog?

Philip CalledtoQuestion said...

@ Trish

Great! We would love that! :) Yes, it is an open blog. Feel free to share, comment or whatever. :) Good to hear from you!