What Do Americans Believe In? Maybe the Better Question Is Does It Matter? What do you Believe in?
Formalized vs, Nonformalized versus Pot Pourri
All kinds of Christianity -- Do we have to list them all?
Protestants, Catholics, Evangelism
Eastern Religions - This is where reincarnation, Buddhism Hinduism, Islam, Jainism and Taoism come in. Americans seem to believe widely and read widely and pick and choose widely.
We can't forget Atheism. Those serious adherent Atheists and those who simply do not care, and don't want to talk about it.
And then there's the one my father told me from WWII. "There's no atheists in a fox hole!"
The Protestant vs. the Catholics, wholesale war. Then in the French Revolution Royalty Suffered
Religious Freedom? Religion in the Name of What?
Probably the more interesting question is ---
Do you get TAX FREEDOM ---
just because you CALL yourself a Religion?
The Syncretistic or Pot Pourri Collection of American Beliefs
So many religions are born in the white hot fire of social conflict and change, and then the little begiinning religion has to go through centuries of development. The human consciousness has to grow toward it, and the new religion succeeds because essentially--- has the time has come for religious change? Actually its a question that everyone is answering everyday.
How about Basic Christianity?
"Christ" is the Annointing that each human soul can realize when they see that Redemptive Power is theirs as a Birthright, if they will only accept it. The "Christos" is what they said Jesus the Prophet had. His Annointing, or often interpreted to mean "wounding" was a concept that he was "dubbed" the Messiah. This Christ like name has to do with a separation. The separation has to do with the realization that EACH SOUL can attain to the special annointing. The wounding has to do with the burden that the Soul carries once they have accepted this Separateness. Once they realize that they can be in charge of their Kingdom or Doman that is Divine, then they really do have to live their lives in a different way. Jesus the Prophet kept on talking about this, and people got it, but then the personification of Jesus kept on getting in the way of the individual realization that each person could be in charge of his own Spiritual Destiny.
Reincarnation - Sampling, Curious, Informal, but Strong Interest
The belief that we need more than one life to develop and reach our spiritual goals is what many think about. It is easy to embrace reincarnation when you simply start thinking about the shortness and brevity of life. The first 10 years, you go through latency and development. Our teen years are an utter drama. Our 20's are pressurized energy filled years of experience seeking and experience gaining. Some of it very negative. The 30s are the last time we get to feel young, but we already talk about getting old. Then the rest is unfolding drama and the life we live. Its just short that's all. Everybody knows that. We all have this inner sense that divine development must consist of more than just getting through our decades in JUST ONE EXISTENCE.
Many Say - We were "saved" lifetimes ago. What we need is to Grow and Mature
Orthodoxy throws Salvation at the Feet of all of us Fallen Men. If you take damnation/salvation and what place in Heaven we end up in out of the formula, then you see mankind as recurring entities who have already been saved. They were saved when they were created aeons ago, as shards of God's light.
"The Bread of Shame" -
An ancient idea that is Kabbalistic, but goes deep into the pre-historic past, probably from Egypt and the Semitic Prophets who came there, is the "Bread of Shame". The first time I read this concept, it felt for me like it was a perfect answer for the "Fall of Man". But then again few would argue that man need's help.
We, us nascent souls - shards of light - could not believe that in our "youngness", after our initial creation, we were worthy of our immortality and magnificence. We felt the "bread of shame" because we knew we needed, not to be young latent beings, but grown up mature immortal souls. The only way for us to develop was to leave the Divine Homeland and go into Physicality.
Americans Are Not Cavalier or Insincere - They are Simply Divergent
Many are New Agers, many are just Liberal Lutherans, Burgeoning Baptists, Mad Methodists and Expansive Episcopalians. I propose that millions (at least hundreds of thousands) of Americans really Resist Labeling. They just have not put that name on what they believe. I propose that people keep going to their churches. That's a bad idea for a religion, but a great idea for getting new converts.
Americans are not floating people in little canoes adrift on the Vastness of Existence. They are looking at others going into their nice buildings. That's what religion really is -- that comforting socializing with those who hold similar beliefs.
A Potential Path -
If it can't happen, it can still be a dream of many who care. A Religion called The Church of Daily Life? That's where all the lessons really are. A Pollster could probably come up with an answer. But does it really matter? People have come up with their own internal sets of Beliefs.
What matters is that we believe in our legal systems and the Rule of Law. Religion will take care of itself, and continue to evolve as Man has.