JE asks: “Would you consider the presence of a Dream Catcher an open door to the occult? I’ve never been comfortable with their use for children . . . I have a necklace & earring set of Dreamcatchers sitting in my jewelry box. . . . (A)fter reading about some of your other posts about jewelry I’ve been thinking that in addition to pitching the “Mary Poppins” book set I never got around to reading, I should pitch the Dream Catcher jewelry as well. Could you maybe tell us a little more about what to look out for in jewelry? Or would that be a whole ‘nother Learn to Discern book?”
AD writes: “Can you tell me about The Five Agreements? I have found out the author is a nagual shaman and it originates with the Toltic religion and culture. To me this is very New Age and someone close to me is encouraging me to buy into this.”
CZ writes: “A woman who used to minister at our local Catholic retreat house recently died. Her obit talks about having spent the last ten years in teaching “the New Cosmology.” What is that? Just from the sound of it, I am sure it is not in accord with Catholicism and church teaching.”
DKK ssks: “Can you write something about the practice of smudging in native spirituality? Is it wrong or against Catholic doctrine?”
GM writes: “My mother and I got into a discussion about idolatry a few weeks ago. She seems to think that having pagan artwork in the home isn’t idolatry, and I can’t help but feel like it is, although the extent of it is a rendering of a buddha by my sister, and a couple buddha statues in opposite alcoves in our entryway. What is Church teaching regarding this?”
I must admit, it struck me as downright shocking that a memorial service held at a public university for the Judeo-Christian victims of the Tucson massacre would offer a pantheistic pagan blessing by a Native American rather than a blessing from a representative of the faiths of the victims. This becomes even more perplexing when you consider that the Yacqi Indian who gave the blessing is Catholic.
Believe it or not, the opening statement to delegates at the United Nation’s Framework Convention on Climate Change which opened in Cancun on November 29 included a invocation to the ancient Mayan goddess known as Ixchel.
As promised, here is a description of another flyer being distributed by JM’s library: “The 2nd flyer they were handing out read: ‘The Concord Library Presents A Day of the Dead Celebration November 2nd 2010 at 3.30pm. - Celebrate and learn about Mesoamerican culture. Aztec dancers will be performing and educating us about the meaning behind each dance. We will also make pinatas and set up altars to relive the experience of this prominent event’.” Read the rest…
RM asks: “Can you tell me what you know and think about “Peace Circles”? Everything I am finding looks to be a very feminist-based program (and not of the true feminism that John Paul II promoted). When reading what I have found (by googling “peace circles”), some of it sounds on the “up and up”. Who doesn’t want peace? But the program is being incorporated in my daughter’s high school French III class with no connection to French at all. We have met with the teacher and administration about our dislikes of the use of this in the classroom, and met head to head with much opposition. Every one of them lauded the use of Peace Circles. Our daughter has not been comfortable with the use of the peace circle especially because of the use of the lit candle, rain stick, rock and ‘talking piece’. Your insight into this matter is greatly appreciated.”