Spirituality in Culture Part 1
SPIRITUALITY IN CULTURE Part 1
(Continuing our series on Spiritual Warfare)
As I look beyond the shores of comfortable, tangible, middle-class Australia, I see lands where spirituality is boldly and passionately flaunted, in the culture of its people. I am envious. Around me I see uncertainty and emptiness in the eyes of some of my fellow Christians. Why does it seem easier for people from other cultures to embrace spiritual concepts?
Let’s take a look at the Javanese culture in Indonesia. Their gods are specific and have faces. They believe in powers of the unseen world affecting their day-to-day life. When they pray to their nature and ancestral spirits they expect a change to occur. Mysticism has become a part of their modern society; even their Politian’s visit spiritualists. So too the Yoruba culture in West Africa, their spiritual plane is clearly divided into five layers, each god has their own number, colour and personality. They watch closely the interaction between their spiritual affecting the nature around them. Their ceremonies involve singing, dance and elaborate offerings, activities which are similar to our Christianity except their ability to embrace the spiritual comes from a community that have passed the same doctrine down from generation to generation. As with the Javanese and other cultures their religion is undiluted enabling them to live out their belief without fear of rejection by other members of the community.
Here in Australia it is a different story. Every denomination of Christian seems to have a different slant on spiritual matters. Some Christians don’t believe in the devil or demons. It is no wonder Christians are feeling confused and want to bury their head in the sand, especially when our community is made up of people who either don’t believe in God or are unsure about what they believe. Trying to relate and interact with our community can see us living out a watered down version of Christianity—not exactly what God intended. Of course we don’t want to scare non-believers by babbling in tongues or prophesying to them. But we do need to pass the information of God’s word so we can use wisdom when living in it.
So what spiritual beliefs does the Bible teach? That’s what we will cover in part 2 see you soon.