Maxine's Journal

Adventures of the Polka-Dotted One

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The Emanixine Creed
I was walking down the road this afternoon and this idea just popped into my head. Wouldn't it be interesting to take one of the most traditional statements of faith in the christian church (which, being the faith that was vaguely foisted on me as a child, is the main religion that I push against, culturally-speaking) kick out the rubbish, and write what I really believe?

For those who aren't aware of it, this is the Nicene Creed

So here, with somewhat tortured language because of trying to fit it vaguely into the same pattern, is my set of beliefs about the world.

The Emanixine Creed:
(probably a first draft)

I believe in a reality external to myself, some of which is observable with my own senses, some of which is not.

I believe in myself as a conscious being, as a person, and in other conscious beings, other people. I believe that continued existence and pleasure in that existence is a good thing, and a valid goal to strive for. I believe that every conscious being has a right to that goal, and any others that do not conflict with my goal to exist in comfort.

I believe that there will be no judgement after life, but if we are to strive collectively to apply the right to exist in comfort to every conscious being, we must judge within ourselves and within our communities, and hold ourselves to the highest standards we are capable of. I believe that the highest glory is in the sharing of happiness and increasing of knowledge, as well as the peaceful coexistence of every conscious being.

I believe in empirical science, not as a fixed body of knowledge, but as a process through which to understand the world, and the external reality in which I exist.

I believe in the universe as the giver of life, which proceeds from the laws of physics as we know them. I acknowledge that my understanding of the world is incomplete, and hope for forgiveness of any misunderstandings. I look for the continuation of this life, and the world to come.

If you were to write a creed for yourself, how would yours read?

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I'd pretty much concur, but I do think there is judgement. Kinda, sorta.

Interesting thoughts, and thanks for linking. :)

I like the idea, but still feel that while people may remember me fondly, I won't know it. I think in my worldview the concepts of heaven and hell apply best while we're alive.

What an excellent idea! As a minister's daughter I grew up hearing the original an awful lot and I think you've fitted it to that style rather well.
It'll take me a fair bit of time to work out one for myself but I think it's worth doing.

I'd love to read it when you're done! :)

I shall try very hard to remember to link it here when I do, but it might be a while :)

I was pondering something along these lines earlier this week when I asked @feministhulk on Twitter if I should produce a Manifesto, Womanifesto or Personifesto.

All glibness aside, I was looking to render down key ideals to help me focus on the important things in life. I really like your Creed, but I think a Manifesto might be more appropriate to me, as the term seems more objective orientated and I am looking to focus on where I want to be rather than where I am now.

But that's probably because you are already in an awesome place (yes am a teensy bit jealous :-P), whereas I can see an awesome place from where I am standing but need to clarify my direction in order to get there.

I'll probably post more on this on my own journal soon, but thank you for inspiring me :-)

Shouldn't it be a Perchildifesto?

Something like...

I'm me.

There may or may not be a reality external to myself, but let's assume there is, because without that it gets pretty boring in here.

Based on that assumption, there are other people* out there. There's also a "universe" (for the sake of argument). I have no evidence whatsoever that the universe cares one whit about my survival or anyone else's, but I've also no evidence that it's actively malevolent, so I'm assuming for now that it's neutral.

I don't presently believe in any universal rights. Rights imply some shared notion of Good, which I've yet to discover. I do believe that, in general, "Do unto others as they would do unto you, but do it first" with a default stance of "co-operate" is pretty effective at keeping me alive, well-fed and privileged enough to have time and energy to blog and equipment with which to blog.

Empirical science - with a healthy dose of scepticism to look out for possible disproofs - appears to date to be the best tool I have to comprehend the external reality. However, I'm aware of the limits of scientific methods, the fallibility of scientists and the presence of metaphysics.

I look forward to seeing what happens next.

* Cats are people too.

Hee! just came back to this. I love the note that cats are people too. :)

When I noted the bit about conscious beings and people, I specifically didn't limit that to human beings. I believe there may well be other conscious species out there, or indeed all around us, or being created by us, and eventually this is going to be relevant.

I also note that your general rule requires psychic powers to apply properly. ;)

But of course. All the best general rules require psychic powers. Consider, for example, "Thou shalt not kill".

Great post!

"and hope for forgiveness of any misunderstandings."

Forgivemenss by whom? You mean other people, right?

"I look for the continuation of life, and the world to come."

So, you believe in the afterlife?

Yes, forgiveness by other people. And no, not an afterlife, just a belief that there will be a day after tomorrow, and that the world is a new place every day - a belief in extending the life I have for as long possible, and making the most of what the future brings.

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