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1 JUST ONE MAN'S OPINION: on 19th November 2009, 15:27


I can not speak on behalf of all Hippies nor can I pretend to be the spokesman for every Christian. I can only offer my own opinion as an individual who grew up in the 60s and experienced both worlds firsthand. In 1969 I had a personal encounter with the true and living God and Father of all creation through His son Jesus Christ. I then joined what has been called the most powerful move of God in modern times which swept through the youth and Hippie subculture of America and became known as the Jesus Movement.

Just one man's opinion...

If we strip away all of the politics and materialism that has crept into the modern church and go back to First Century Christianity we will find an interesting parallel between true Christianity and Hippiedom sans the drugs and free love. Rather than reducing Jesus to a long hair Hippie cliche complete with beard and sandals I would prefer to focus on Jesus' message and its relationship to Hippie culture. It is important to note that the banner of peace, love and cosmic connection under which most Hippies gather is at the very heart of Jesus' teachings.

We can find the core of Jesus' teachings in the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew's Gospel chapters 5-7. If only these three chapters of Jesus' words survived the past two millennium we would have all the truth necessary to live in peace and harmony with both our Creator and our fellow pilgrims here on planet Earth. The Sermon on the Mount is what could be called the Hippie Christian Manifesto. It contains such treasures as The Beatitudes, The Lord's Prayer, The Golden Rule, and Turning the Other Cheek.

But beyond those treasures, beyond the call to avoid hypocrisy, beyond the mandate to shun materialism, beyond the proclamation that peacemakers are God's children, greater than all these we find in the Sermon on the Mount a theme that offers a connection to the Creator of the universe. Jesus does something totally revolutionary and unheard of before His time, He presents God as our Father.

Jesus is the consummation of our Hippie quest for not only peace and love but also Jesus provides the cosmic connection that binds all of us together as Children of The Light.

I see that identifying myself as a Hippie Christian would be the same thing as someone describing them self as a Christian Cowboy, or a Christian Biker. The problem would be if one were to claim to be a Christian Drug Dealer, or Christian Satanist. As long as the two are not mutually exclusive the dual title helps give a clearer picture of a person's values and heritage.

The title Hippie Christian explains not only my personal belief in Jesus as Savior, but also my cultural ideation as a Hippie. Growing up my family didn't have any strong cultural identity, we were just WASP (White Anglo/Saxon Protestant) middle-class suburbanites. Just fully blended American Mutts, you know, white bread - no crust. Although I have a strong desire to explore my English (possible Irish) ancestry, Celtic Christian may become my future ideation, at this time I see Hippie as my cultural identity

Many Americas use this dual method of describing their ethnic and national heritage, for example, African American, Asian American, Native American. It can also be used to describe an ethnic origin and religious orientation, such as Irish Catholic or Black Muslim. If a person's cultural heritage, national origin, religious orientation, or ethnic pride has a strong meaning to the individual, then to couple them together is very natural and helpful for that person and those with whom he/she interacts. Doing so gives that person a sense of identity and place in history and society.

It could become quite cumbersome though if one were to link too many titles together. In the 1960s & 1970s I was called a Long Hair Hippie Jesus Freak. Very descriptive, but far too long of a handle to use all the time. I could have added more to it in creating a more complete identity for my self, thus I would have been know as a Long Hair Red Head Anglo/Saxon Middle-Class Suburban Hippie Jesus Freak. As you can see this process of linking titles can become no more than silly nonsense and void of any real meaning if over done. It is only valuable if the most important ideations are linked to provide the most meaning to both the individual and to those around him/her.

The most important identity that I have is a Child of God.

Going to church does not make you a Christian nor does wearing tie-dye make you a Hippie any more than sitting in a garage changes people into automobiles. Christianity and Hippiedom are both heart things and together they become a lifestyle more true to Jesus' Sermon on the Mount than what modern Christianity offers today.

Being a Hippie Christian is possible, and it is most likely less of a contradiction than being an American Christian. If we all were to follow the truth contained in the Sermon on the Mount there would be less of a distinction between Hippie and Christian.

Peace, Love, and Light Through Jesus the Christ! (John 14:6)

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