A few things about that scene in tonight’s Vikings, now that I’ve had a bit of time to gather my thoughts:
It had been bothering me all season long that Ragnar’s obviously very genuine baptism at the end of season 3 had been all but forgotten. But now it all makes sense. It’s not about Christian or Pagan. It’s not about Odin or Jesus or Heaven or Valhalla. For Ragnar it is simply a matter of faith. And what was Athelstan if not the embodiment of faith in Ragnar’s eyes? Ragnar’s faith absolutely died with Athelstan.
Literally once he survived Paris and went on living back home, it was as a faithless man. It’s not that he doesn’t want to see Athelstan in his Heaven once more. It’s that he has lost the ability to allow himself to believe such a place could even exist.
“Athelstan was a man of God.” “And he still died.” Ragnar has lost so many people, and his belief in Gods or an afterlife has never hinged on death. For him death was not a defeat, only a new beginning. Athelstan’s death well and truly stripped him of his faith to the core.
So what is he left with if not an eternity in the afterlife with his beloved? Well, seeing the only piece of Athelstan left on this Earth in the form of his only son certainly seemed to bring Ragnar more joy than anything has since the last time he gazed upon Athelstan’s living face.
Like I just genuinely feel that seeing Alfred was an essential thing for him before his death. To know some part of Athelstan will go on living. That is a victory for Ragnar in itself.
Anyway I do think it’s rlly interesting that they had Ecbert pose the question of which afterlife Athelstan landed in upon his death. I, like Ragnar, have little faith left at this point, but wouldn’t it be lovely if they give us some sign that the two of them will be reunited on the other side after all…
Also props to Michael Hirst for at least acknowledging that Ragnar’s downfall and wish for death did indeed spring from Athelstan’s death. In every way that counts, they died together. Ragnar could never get past the burden of such a loss, and everything since then has been in the hopes of ending it all.
Emma knows Killian did really bad things in his life, and she also knows it’s still difficult for him sometimes, but she trusts him enough to accept his flaws and forgive him, because she sees he does his best to change. She doesn’t focus on the pirate he was but on the hero he’s becoming.
I don’t think it’s fair to blame DC for The Killing Joke as They simply put too much faith in Bruce Timm which, given that he made Their animated universe what it is, couldn’t have seemed like a bad move at the time. It’s similar to the debacle of All-Star Batman & Robin when They put too much trust in Frank Miller and failed to realize that he was far, far past his best work.
My favorite thing about iZombie (aside from how well they deal with Seattle)? How Babineaux just…believes that Liv’s psychic. No questioning her, no trying to get her to reveal how she really knows stuff, no thinking she’s the murderer. Nope, she has one vision and he’s on board.
I don’t know. I just…I like that he simply has faith in her.
A WIP of my demon hunter I plan to play in Legion.
It is a strange thing, I imagine, to hear from lips who
freely lay down their purity. That the
motivations behind my, indeed I like to think behind all of our, choice to
forsake our birthright and place was love.
That when we turned to the sky and whispered our prayers we saw
salvation not in the hands of one who might be watching over us, but in our
own. It was not faithlessness. For many of us still retain the unshakeable
attribute that it is to understand faith.
Simply, our focus has shifted. In
the knowledge that to face our hated enemy, we must not entrust our fates
overly so to a Goddesses and distant virtues but in our blood, flesh and souls. That we must sacrifice that and more. So much more.
They have come to destroy what we have come to love and each
and every one of us will pick up arms and fight for what we believe in, true to
this are most living creatures. But us
who have taken the fight into our very selves will without hesitation or
wavering die for what we love. And it
was with elated spirited and hardened heart I traded my prayers for the dark of
blindness. My staff for a well sharpened
pair of glaives. Because I loved the
place of my birth. Because I loved my
sisters. Because I loved our way of life. Because I loved Azeroth.
‘Beloved, now are we the sons of God.’ That is easy to read, but it is not so easy to feel. How is it with your heart this morning? Are you in the lowest depths of sorrow? Does corruption rise within your spirit, and grace seem like a poor spark trampled under foot? Does your faith almost fail you? Fear not, it is neither your graces nor feelings on which you are to live: you must live simply by faith on Christ. With all these things against us, now—in the very depths of our sorrow, wherever we may be—now, as much in the valley as on the mountain, 'Beloved, now are we the sons of God.’ 'Ah, but,’ you say, 'see how I am arrayed! my graces are not bright; my righteousness does not shine with apparent glory.’ But read the next: 'It doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him.’ The Holy Spirit shall purify our minds, and divine power shall refine our bodies; then shall we see him as he is.
‘I look forward to a day when children, as a result of integrating the principles of nonviolence and peaceful conflict resolution at school, will be more aware of their feelings and emotions and feel a greater sense of responsibility both toward themselves and toward the wider world. Wouldn’t that be wonderful? To bring about this better world, therefore, let us, old and young - not as members of this nation or that nation, not as members of this faith or that faith, but simply as individual members of this great human family of seven billion - strive together with vision, with courage, and with optimism. This is my humble plea.
Within the scale of the life of the cosmos, a human life is no more than a tint blip. Each one of us is a visitor to this planet, a guest, who has only a finite time to stay. What greater folly could there be to spend this time lonely, unhappy, and in conflict with our fellow visitors? Far better, surely, to use our short time in pursuing a meaningful life, enriched by a sense of connection with and service toward others.
So far, of the twenty-first century, just over a decade has gone; the major part of it has yet to come. It is my hope that this will be a century of peace, a century of dialogue - a century when a more caring, responsible, and compassionate humanity will emerge. This is my prayer as well.’
- His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Beyond Religion: Ethics for a a Whole World.
Specifically those who practice (or have practiced) a religion or belief.
I would love to compile a list of individuals in this community who actively practice a religion or belief, have practiced a religion or belief in the past, or were raised in a multi-religious household, etc. that would be open to having other writers message them to better understand what it is like to practice a religion or other belief.
I always find it most helpful when researching other faiths to simply talk with someone who has experienced that specific faith first hand. Its so much more helpful than reading a wikipedia article, and I think looking at it through a more personal lens can really help you understand what your character may be going through in their life. Hence, the creation of the list in question.
If you would like to be one of these resources listed, please reblog, reply, or send me an ask (not through messenger please!) with the following information:
Whether you currently practice or formerly practiced
If you are considering participating, all I ask is that you’re open to discussing it with others or prepared to answer questions.
The Quran repeatedly insists on the eminent and singular position of the Messenger of God ﷺ, all at once a Prophet, a bearer of news, a model and a guide. He was but a man, yet he acted to transform the world in the light of the revelations and inspirations he received from God, his Educator (ar-Rabb): this accepted, elected and inspired humanity is what makes of Muhammad an example and a guide for the Muslim faithful.
Muslims do not consider the Messenger of Islam ﷺ as a mediator between God and men. Each individual conscience is invited to address God directly, and although the Messenger did sometimes pray to God for his community, he often insisted on each believer’s responsibility in his dialogue and relationship with the One. Muhammad simply reminds the faithful of God’s presence: he initiates them to His knowledge and discloses the initiatory path of spirituality through which he teaches his companions and community that they must transcend the respect and love they have for him in the worship and Love they must offer and ask of the One, who begets not and is not begotten.
To those who, in his lifetime, wanted miracles and concrete evidence of his prophethood, the Revelation ordered him to reply: “I am but a man like yourselves; the inspiration has come to me that your God is One God.” This same Revelation also informs the believers, for all eternity, of the singular status of this Messenger ﷺ who, while being elected by God, has not lost his human qualities: “Ye have indeed in the Messenger of God an excellent example for him who hopes in God and the Final Day, and who remembers God much.”