Monotheistic Filter: Giving and Reciprocity

The controversy among Polytheists about animal sacrifices highlights The Filter in action. Modern people are supposed to know better than to kill animals or offer problematic things like bullets to the Gods. These things are made taboo by the modern western culture, not by Polytheism. Reciprocity, the bedrock of Polytheistic piety, is never considered.

An incident in my father’s life illustrates the purpose of Christian giving, and highlights how The Filter impacts Polytheistic offering. My father grew up poor at a time of no social services. Needy people depended on local charities for food, fuel, and clothes. One Christmas, the Church Charity Committee presented his family with a dinner and presents. “Pop,” his father had been ill with TB. While the church people thought they were helping out, “Pop” felt shame at being exposed as being unable to provide for his family. My father explained that the Church Charity Committee had robbed “Pop” of his dignity as the head of the household.

In Monotheism, the relationship between people and their God is one of submission. By doing good works, they receive the blessings of their God. The act of giving is a display of piety to demonstrate God’s mercy in action. Since He demands obedience, the focus of giving to the poor is about Him. Reciprocity is not the aim of the Monotheistic God. As He showers his blessings on his followers, so do they to the needy in his name. The poor are props in the Christian play of giving.

Further Reading:

Dawson, Tess, “The Horned Altar.” Woodbury, MN: Llewellyn Publications. 2013.

Kaldera, Raven, “Dealing with Deities.” Hubbardston (MA): Asphodel Press. 2012.
“Wyrdwalkers.” Hubbardston (MA): Asphodel Press.2007.

Krasskova, Galina, “Devotional Polytheism.” Sanngetall Press. 2014.

Lecouteux, Claude, “Demons and Spirits of the Land,” translated by Jon Graham. Inner Traditions: Rochester (VT). 2015.
“The Tradition of Household Spirits,” translated by Jon Graham. Inner Traditions: Rochester (VT).2013.

Thomas, Kirk, “Sacred Gifts.” Tucson AZ: ADF Publishing. 2015.

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2 thoughts on “Monotheistic Filter: Giving and Reciprocity

  1. I like your outlook. I might add, the humanist model challenges the christian moral at every turn. Christians are not leading the fight against animal cruelty, and still use words like subdue and dominion to take their rightful place at the head of the animals for profit table.

    Liked by 1 person

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