This thread is bringing back so many memories for me. When I was 13 - 16 I was studying Wicca/Paganism. I was planning to dedicate myself and adopt it as my religion on my 18th birthday. So for 3 yrs I was reading anything and everything I could. Learning about the different aspects, and options available. I wanted to have a solid belief and a thorough knowledge when I did my pledge.
I remember telling my mom, (who was raised Catholic, but is a non practicing Christian -esque spirtual type. lol) And she didn't know anything about it, so I am trying to explain and she said "Can't you just plant a tree and believe in Jesus under it?"
She was ok with it as long as it wasn't Devil Worship tho.
However, I never did do that pledge. I decided that the structure of an actual religion was not something that made me happy, it made me feel more guilty than anything. Which was the same reason I was no longer an active Christian like I was when I was 12. I wasn't getting the fulfillment that I think you should get from a religion.
I really loved the basics of the Pagan religion however, just as I love aspects of Christianity, and Buddhism, and even a smidgen of Judaism. So I find that instead of practicing one, I practice none, but incorporate my favourite things of each into my life.
I pray to whomever listens, I believe in the universe, the power of love, and myself. I incorporate aspects from everything into my everyday life.
It's amazing when you really listen to all sides if a religion. You can find how similar they really are. The root of all the religions I have learned about, is be a good person, and do no harm. What's more wonderful than that?
I found my fulfillment by my own personal combination. I don't think I would have that if I hadn't found Paganism. It was the missing piece for me.
I love seeing how diverse everyone's practice is. From coven's to solitaires, kitchen witch's to dabblers... It's amazing how we can interpret one thing to mean so many different things.