Re: Christian Cohousing
From: Eris Weaver (
Date: Wed, 15 Dec 2004 15:24:14 -0800 (PST)
Thank you, Guy, for your very thoughtful post.

> I wonder if the same thing would have happened if it read, "For the
> earth!" or "In the name of Allah, blessed be He."

I suspect not.

Just last week I initiated a very interesting -- and not yet finished --
conversation in our community about this very issue.

We have had a variety of different rituals in our community over the
course of our five years of development and one year of residence.
Groundbreaking and housewarming celebrations, our own special holiday
Hearth Day, an impromptu Midsummer Night blessing of the property,
planting rituals, and a blessing or reading of some sort before dinner.
Depending on who's leading, they have included Pagan, Native American,
Buddhist, Sufi, and Jewish elements. There has never been a reading or
anything that was explicitly Christian. On the first night of Hanukkah,
before dinner, candles were lit, prayers sung, etc. The question I asked
at my dinner table was this: what would people's reactions be if our only
(that I know of) practicing Christian said a prayer mentioning Jesus or
read from the New Testament before dinner? From the comments of people at
my table, I suspect that some people would have a problem with it, while
others acknowledged that if they did it would be hypocritical.  At least
in my lefty circles, it seems that "anything but Christian" goes. Despite
(or because of?) the fact that many of us grew up within one of the
Christian churches.  The argument seems to be that since Christianity is
the dominant religion in the US (and a particularly nasty, IMO
non-Christian version of it running the White House), and we are
progressive/lefty/anticorporate/opposed to whatever is mainstreatm, that
therefore Christianity is associated with The Enemy. And that because we
are progressive and diverse and all of that, we must be open to anything
that is NOT the mainstream, whether we agree with it or not.

I am trying to persuade our Christian (who also happens to be my wife!) to
read something explicitly Christian when it is next her turn, just to see
what happens. I don't know that she will, though, because she keeps her
religion personal and may not want to use it to stir up things.

(I, just for the record, am a Recovering Catholic Atheist with Neo-Pagan

Eris Weaver
erisw [at]

Cohousing in Cotati, CA

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