Why I Like Being Quaker
Beliefnet members discuss what their religious beliefs mean to them.
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I came to Quakerism after a childhood as a Pentecostal and early adulthood as a Mennonite. From Pentecostalism I gained an appreciation of spontaneity and unprogrammed worship is intended as a vehicle for immediate revelation. From Mennonitism I gained a dedication to non-violence and service. Coming to Quakerism involved a shift from a bible-based belief system to an experience-based one. I now consider most doctrines as attempts at confining the divine within traditions. The divine I experience in unprogrammed worship is ever-changing and healing. Religious traditions are useful, but ultimately secondary to an open-hearted pursuit of compassion.