Some may say that spirituality is superstition, and I suppose by definition it is, but I feel certain that there is strength and power in any variation of "prayer". It's all energy transfer. Just because I believe my spiritual guide is a different deity than a lot of people doesn't make her less powerful.
Why do Western people vilify the source of our culture as the work of the Devil?
Why do Literalist Christians assume that there was a direct cut-off line in history when Christianity came in to effect?
Why did Christianity set out to unify all people but instead it created great schisms?
If we as people have moved beyond the answer "because I said so," then how can the answer "because it says so in the Bible" continue to hold water? And, realistically, for how much longer?
Why did we give up on our ancestors?
I couldn't have said it any better than this. The following is from "The Jesus Mysteries" by Timothy Freke and Peter Gandy.
....To move confidently forward into the future it is necessary to come to terms with the past, so it is appropriate to critically examine the Literalist Christianity that has dominated the last 2,000 years of our culture
Spiritually this truly has been a "Dark Age" characterized by authoritarian religion, religious bigotry, and religious wars. By assuming the role of the only true faith Literalist Christianity has created an unbridgeable gulf between itself and all other spiritual traditions. Its self-proclaimed superiority has been used to justify the violent destruction of other societies around the world. It has even horribly persecuted its own mystics and free-thinkers. By adopting the Jewish father god Jehovah as the only acceptable face of God, it has subjugated the Divine Feminine, a theological perspective it has used to legitimize the subordination of women. Its insistence on blind faith in dogma and opposition to intellectual inquiry has led many to reject all forms of spirituality as mere superstition. For more and more people today religion is at best a joke and at worst a source of prejudice, intolerance, and conflict.
Whereas other cultures honor their ancestors as the source of their wisdom and civilization, we have vilified ours as Devil worshipers. What has this done to the Western psyche? We have been a culture cut off from it's roots. only after the rediscovery of Pagan philosophy in the fifteenth century, during the appropriately named Renaissance, or "rebirth," was Western civilization able to climb out of the morass of superstition and strife into which it had descended, a process which in recent years has yielded the fruit of modern science. Yet, unlike the ancients, we have not viewed science and spirituality as two aspects of the same Mystery, but as implacably hostile to each other.
Although it set out to unify the world under the banner of one religion, Literalist Christianity has actually been the cause of deep divisions: Christians against heathens, men against women, science against religion, faith against reason. The Jesus Mysteries Thesis is not just a new history of Christianity, it is an opportunity to heal the wounds left in the Western soul by these dreadful schisms.
If Christianity were to acknowledge its debt to the ancient mysteries it could connect again to the universal current of human spiritual evolution and become a partner, not an adversary, of all the other religious traditions it has branded as the work of the Devil. If it were to cast off the deadweight of the Old Testament and its jealous tribal deity, it could rediscover the wisdom of the Divine Feminine. If it were to relinquish its dogmatism, it could reawaken the ancient sense of wonder that united science and mysticism in one human adventure of discovery. If it could finally concede that the New Testament is the work of mean and women, not the word of God recording actual events, there would be nothing to stop it recovering it's own mystical Inner Mysteries. Is this too much to hope for?
Only a century ago most thinking people believed that the story of Adam and Eve was literally true. Darwin's idea of natural evolution was regarded as ridiculous and heretical. Today Darwin's "unthinkable thought" has been overwhelmingly accepted. The Jesus Mysteries proposes a comparable shift in our understanding of Christianity. Today it may seem outrageous to claim that Christianity evolved from Paganism and that the Jesus story, like Genesis, is an allegorical myth. But tomorrow this will be obvious and uncontentious.
Christianity did not arrive as a unique divine intervention. It evolved from the past, like everything else. There are no sudden breaks in history, only a continuum of change. The ancient Pagan Mysteries did not die. They transformed into something new -- into Christianity. The spirituality of the West has been shaped by these two great traditions. The time has come to rediscover their common ground and claim all of our rich heritage.
Of course this will never be accepted by fundamentalists, but if Christianity bows to reactionary pressure to return to its authoritarian past it will be consigning itself to the dustbin of history. The modern world is simply too sophisticated to fall for the "it must be true because it says so in the Bible" routine. Already Christianity is no longer the dominant force it once was. With its demise our culture has been left desperately searching for a new spiritual direction. Only by return to its mystical roots will Christianity play a role in the creation of a new spirituality for the New Age of Aquarius. Literalist Christianity is built on the unsteady foundations of historical lies. Sooner or later it must topple over. But mystical Christianity rests securely on the bedrock of timeless mythical truth and is as relevant today as it has always been.