paulflexes saidIf I had to join one, it would be Buddhism.
I had thought of that one as well.. but after living in Asia for almost a year I decided against it.. nothing wrong with it.. but it is very similar to Catholic monkhood/priesthood in many ways
That's probably a decent indication that you shouldn't join any order, regardless of faith.
Monkhood means seclusion, 99% of the time; celibacy, etc...
the "religious order" is the issue here. Most priesthoods are based on hierarchies and domination.
The other guy kind of had a truism about Buddhism, it's certainly much less S&M.
The ideal of the Shaman, on the other hand is something opposite of the 'religious order'
Basically, you are a spiritual leader....usually of variant sexuality or possessing some physical abnormality. There is no hierarchy (ie...no one tell you what or how to pray)
The problem is, that actually not true.. I believe an idealised view of shamanism that has taken hold in the western world in response to its indignation with the current religious orders... shamans in tribal cultures are both highly respected and highly feared.. they are considered very powerful and can cause either miraculous things to happen or disastrous things in their community.. their prayers and activities are highly ritualised.. with a complex array of ceremonies and taboos which must at all times be adhered to, and have been laid down by the gods, by ancestors,
In fact, Judaism is a perfect example... even though it has swelled into a current religion, they are a tribal religion 100%.. with all the rules and regulations for men/women, dress, food, sex, and religious services firmly in place.. so it is with shamans who spend tens upon tens of years having to learn the stories, spells and ceremonies and must adhere to the rules of the tribe.... there is no real difference.. the main difference lies in their faith, which is not a universal one, but inherent to their tribal identitiy, in the exact same way that a jew will be a member of the "chosen people" towards the jewish g-d... but that membership does not in any way extend to people outside of that religion.... the Christian god by its very definition, nor the muslim god, have anything to do with the Jewish g-d... they are based on comletely different views of the human-g-d relationship.. and this is why religions will never fully agree... they are meant to define a cultural/tribal identity.. and by doing so, they will always divide them... to each tribe there will be their own gods... adn each tribe must stick to its own rulings.... so was I believe Nebechudnezzar insensed when teh hebrews began worshipping gods of other tribes.. not because they were devils, but because each tribe had its own g-d/gods which could not be mixed with others... this was taboo... mixing was, and still is among tribes... a great taboo....