07
Aug
09

Disconnected

I recently had posted a small rant at Black Girl In Maine’s blog, and it has me thinking about other things in life.

I’m middle class in everything that counts for that socioeconomic status, except for the money, in a nation where money seems to be the big defining thing for people’s worth and their ability to access things like healthcare, which should be a bit more of a right, and a lot less of a luxury.

I call myself a left-leaning moderate, and that’s pretty much true, but then again, it isn’t. I am liberal; it’s just that I have a few right-leaning viewpoints that make most liberals blanch and therefore get me kicked out of the liberal club. So no matter how much some people might try to label me a “radical liberal” for a few specific viewpoints, the fact is that I’m a primarily liberal guy who isn’t left-wing.

Running off that, I’m liberal and progressive in many aspects of religion, even though I put my faith in the Bible being the Word of God. I have some very fundamental beliefs, but at the same time, the spin I see in them and the implications that feel true to me often run counter to what many fundamentalists and evangelistic folks believe. Because, I believe there is a Hell and there is a Satan, but I don’t think that everyone who fails to confess Jesus with their mouth is destined to go there. I don’t feel comfortable with abortion, but I also refuse to demonize those who have them or who support a woman’s right to choose. I believe that churches shouldn’t be forced to marry same-sex couples, but I believe that they should be able to get actual marriages that are in every way equivalent to traditional marriages.

In the end, what I feel like is a man without a country in a sense. It’s not that I think I’m the only one who has these beliefs and feelings; I know I’m not.

But among Christians, I feel I cannot open up about many topics honestly. Among liberals, I don’t feel I can be open about all my views. Among my peers, I don’t feel like I can be honest about my financial woes. Because in each of these groups, to be open is going to make people uncomfortable and treat me differently than before. No matter how many other things we share in common, the differences are what will stand out.

I’m no saint, but one thing I do know about myself is that I accept people mostly for who they are, and it’s rare that I hold a person’s differences against them. At the same time, I find that most people who claim to be open-minded and fair don’t share this trait, and so I must be on guard about what I say, lest I end up with even fewer people to talk to and hang out with than I already have.

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30 Responses to “Disconnected”


  1. August 7, 2009 at 6:16 pm

    You’re not alone.

  2. August 7, 2009 at 11:17 pm

    For 40 years, I was afraid to tell anyone – not even my parents, my siblings, my lovers, the one person I loved most in the world – who I was. Who I am. I could not reveal even that simple, most basic truth – regardless of politics, religion, or anything else.

    Loneliness? Isolation? Alienation? Yes. I was a person without a country, too.

    I know whereof you speak. And, as Lindsey says, you are not alone. While I don’t believe all the same things you do, I welcome you to speak your truth – wherever you are, whenever I’m here.

  3. August 8, 2009 at 11:36 am

    Ditto. As usual you are insightful, and penetrating, clearly articulating that human characteristic causing the lack of unity that Jesus prayed we would be delivered from. I wonder why we still wait for this prayer to be answered, and what his means theologically. I feel like I should wear a “heretic” badge to bible study, even after withholding my most unconventional thoughts and questions.

  4. 4 thewordofme
    August 9, 2009 at 3:33 am

    Hi Deacon,

    I’m sorry you are down in the dumps my friend (I hope you don’t mind me calling you friend) Although we have argued in the past I want you to know that I totally respect your views and enjoy “talking” with you here on your blog or mine.

    Although I don’t believe in magic, or anything like that, know that I will be sending good thoughts to you in the hope that they might help in some way.

    I don’t know much about you other than your writing, but you seem to be a decent fellow with lots of responsibilities and aspirations…much like me in a earlier life. At 31 I was a single father trying to raise 2 very young daughters, I was never more scared in my life. When age 33 I meet my loving wife and her 3 young children. We were married soon after and we started down a tough road of raising 5 children and trying to survive.

    We managed to make it, but it wasn’t easy by any means, and we still love each other and the children have grown to be responsible, hard working,and good people in their own right. All I’m trying to say here is that sometimes there doesn’t appear to be any light at the end of the tunnel, but by keeping a good attitude (no matter how hard that may seem to do) and working hard,as I’m sure you do, you will survive.

    Again, I don’t know you, but if I might make an important point…keep the love and respect for your wife always in the front of your mind and turn to her for help…don’t try to do it all alone. But, you already know that I’m sure. 🙂

    Peace to you Deacon

    twom

  5. 5 Deacon Blue
    August 9, 2009 at 4:29 pm

    Thanks, all, for giving me the confirmation that I was right in thinking I’m not the only person…just wish it was easier to locate people locally who share a similar outlook…and I don’t mean that they agree with everything I think but just that they won’t look cross-eyed at me if I say something they think is a little “off.” 😉

    TWOM, our disagreements have never made me think you were anything but a person with different opinions on certain issues. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out we agree on far more things than not in life. The advice is taken in the spirit given, and it’s appreciated.

  6. 6 LightWorker
    August 15, 2009 at 6:39 pm

    “[A]nd so I must be on guard about what I say, lest I end up with even fewer people to talk to and hang out with than I already have.”

    That may not be such a bad thing!

  7. 7 LightWorker
    August 15, 2009 at 6:46 pm

    “Although I don’t believe in magic, or anything like that….” TWOM

    It’s all magic, or, as I prefer to call it, miracles.

  8. 8 thewordofme
    August 15, 2009 at 6:49 pm

    Hi lightworker,

    There is no such thing as magic. 🙂

    However I can douse water…

  9. 9 thewordofme
    August 15, 2009 at 6:51 pm

    Or is that dowse? I think its dowse…sorry.

  10. 10 LightWorker
    August 15, 2009 at 7:35 pm

    “There is no such thing as magic.” TWOM

    I didn’t think you’d get back to me in days, if ever. TWOM, It all depends on how you define “magic.” Now, miracles are something else. I know the meaning of the word, but I like to think of it this way: Experiencing the seeming impossible.

    There’s nothing about the life you’re living that should be possible, but it is. That’s a miracle.

    When you think about it, really think about it, Nothing should exist, but it does. That’s a miracle.

    Now here’s my guess: You won’t see any of this as miraculous, because you’ve accepted material causation, and have rationalized the impossibility of a source outside of matter. Yet: Either all is matter, or all is mind.

    And even as matter alone (despite our ability to break the “natural code” of things), I’m stunned by the seeming impossibility of it all.

    Mortimer Adler wrestles with the idea in his book, “The Difference of Man and the Difference It Makes.” http://www.amazon.com/Difference-Man-Makes/dp/0823215350/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1250377953&sr=1-1

    He found it impossible to reconcile the two states (matter and mind), since both violently contradicted the other.

    Living inside a material world, matter is all most of us are able to see, believing that matter was somehow self-originating and self-generating.

    Now, if I’ve presumed too much, I stand to be corrected.

  11. 11 thewordofme
    August 15, 2009 at 8:44 pm

    Hi Lightworker, good to “talk” with you.

    Miracles: “A marvelous event manifesting a supernatural act of a divine agent.”

    Magic: “Any art that invokes supernatural powers.”

    Supernatural: “Not existing in nature or subject to explanation according to natural laws; not physical or material.”

    It’s all the same stuff…”not existing in nature.”

    Can you show me, or point me to an un-natural, magical, or supernatural “thing” that I can see and touch and experience in a physical manner? Can you point out some event or happening that uses magic or supernatural powers that can be certified real from someone other than the followers of a particular faith? (Faith: A strong belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny.)

    Can you point me to any miracles or certifiable supernatural or magical events, happenings, or demonstrations that have happened in times other than 2000 years or longer ago? Penn and Teller don’t count. 🙂

    Who says my life should be impossible? Do you think we are actually lying on a concrete slab somewhere in a cave having all of this “reality” feed to us in a tube or wire? And as far as nothing should exist goes, I’ll just have to live with the many unanswered questions we have about life and the natural world. I’m mostly a happy camper with my life and all the things that go into making it meaningful. My life doesn’t seem to require the magical, supernatural element for me to be happy and productive as a human.

    You write:
    “Now here’s my guess: You won’t see any of this as miraculous, because you’ve accepted material causation, and have rationalized the impossibility of a source outside of matter. Yet: Either all is matter, or all is mind.”

    I am totally open to proofs, but the Christian Bible does not provide any, in fact some of what most Christian believe about it can be proven wrong. There is talk of miracles in its pages, but nothing that can be confirmed by outside sources. It has bold stories of things that God was supposed to have done, but many of them are demonstratively wrong…they are simple illustrations only.

    You write:
    “And even as matter alone (despite our ability to break the “natural code” of things), I’m stunned by the seeming impossibility of it all.”

    Yes there is an element of impossibility to all of it…but the line of succession from star dust to humans is logical and easy to follow.

    Who made the star dust, you ask?

    Who made God, I ask?

  12. 12 LightWorker
    August 16, 2009 at 1:36 am

    Greetings, TWOM:

    It’s good to talk with you.

    “Can you show me, or point me to an un-natural, magical, or supernatural “thing” that I can see and touch and experience in a physical manner?”

    You have made that rather difficult by virtue of your definition. “I want to see an un-natural or supernatural thing, naturally.”

    “Miracles:’A marvelous event manifesting a supernatural act of a divine agent.’”

    “Magic: ‘Any art that invokes supernatural powers.’”

    By that definition of magic (and I must tread lightly here), a “divine agent,” in the strictest sense, is not required. This so-called magic occurs daily by non-divine agents. But you wouldn’t want to evoke their wrath, nor their displeasure.

    In this, ignorance is bliss.

    “It’s all the same stuff…’not existing in nature.’” It’s not really “all the same stuff.” True, God is all-in-all, but he’s not the direct source of what you call “magic.” Some practitioners of magic are using a source other than God, just as the magicians in Pharaoh’s court used a source other than the God Moses turned to perform his miracles.

    Yet, regardless of source, phenomenon occur that we attribute to one source or the other. Where we err is in believing that there’re natural and supernatural phenomenon, and that the two never meet. Just as with the mind/matter dilemma that I referenced, and you chose to ignore, all is either mind or matter, or natural or supernatural. Guess where I stand on the issue?

    “Can you point me to any miracles or certifiable supernatural or magical events, happenings, or demonstrations that have happened in times other than 2000 years or longer ago?”

    I can, but you have ruled out what I can provide with this statement: “Can you point out some event or happening that uses magic or supernatural powers that can be certified real from someone other than the followers of a particular faith?”

    You ask the question, but render an answer practically impossible by saddling it with the strictest of requirements, making the effort a waste of time.

    Yet, one example that fits the bill for me, but probably discounted by you, is the phenomenon that is called Near Death Experience.

    “After years of ridicule and denial, scientists and doctors are finally beginning to take near death experiences (NDEs) seriously, as shown by a report in the December 15 issue of the respected English medical journal The Lancet.

    “In a recent study conducted in the Netherlands, Dr. Pim van Lommel and colleagues studied 62 patients who said they had a near-death experience after going into cardiac arrest. They found that factors such as medication and the duration of unconsciousness did not explain the phenomenon. ‘Our results show that medical factors cannot account for occurrence of near-death experiences,’ says van Lommel.”

    “My life doesn’t seem to require the magical, supernatural element for me to be happy and productive as a human.”

    As a eternal beneficiary of that which you call the “supernatural,” I would agree: you don’t need to know of its existence (the supernatural) to be “happy and productive.” You benefit from it whether you acknowledge it or not, or know of it or not.

    If you choose to live your life this way, so be it. But beware of not believing in an afterlife. As you fall asleep so shall you awake, or not. If you don’t believe in an afterlife, you will carry that belief to the other side, and remain in your slumber indefinitely, and will resist any efforts to be awaken.

    “Yes there is an element of impossibility to all of it…but the line of succession from star dust to humans is logical and easy to follow.

    “Who made the star dust, you ask?

    “Who made God, I ask?”

    Even that line of succession is not without mystery. We’re still searching for the “missing link.” Some believe that it’s been found, but that’s another story for another day. Tracing human history and development is a small element of the “miracle” that is man.

    Man is not alive. He’s being kept alive. Can I prove it? Not to your satisfaction.

    And God’s existence? I’ve written on that elsewhere, under the heading, “The Nature of God.” God has always existed, and is an existence, and not a being. “Something” is the real and eternal. Nothingness has never existed, making God a miracle unto himself.

    Studying the physicality of humans gives you only one half of the equation, and the lesser part. Because the world of spirit (or the supernatural) does not lend itself to observation and manipulation with matter-based instruments, that world is largely unknown to scientists, and they seem to like it that way.

    Yet, despite the obvious separation, the lines of inquiry are beginning to blur. Consciousness, that which seems to behave independently of matter, has come under scientific scrutiny, and is said to account for certain observable material phenomena.

    And then we have this:

    “The legendary particle that physicists thought explained the basic question of why matter has mass, often called the “God particle,” probably does not exist, and now a few scientists are beginning to consider the idea that what might be there is not a particle at all, but some sort of consciousness or intelligence, that would mean that the universe does indeed have a God.”

    “Who made the star dust, you ask?”

    No, I ask, rather, “Who made Microsoft Windows?”

    Is the answer to the second any less obvious than the first? I say an intelligence is responsible for the both. What exactly is science? It’s the method by which man seeks to unlock the mysteries around him, including man and the stars.

    Scientists do what Microsoft warns its users not to do, “You’re licensed to use this software, but it may not be reversed engineered,” or some such language.

    Man is reverse engineering his universe (and calling it science), but the Intelligence of the universe didn’t patent his ideas, but offered them freely.

    Now when we look at the code that makes up Windows, we don’t question whether it was designed and developed by an intelligence, we just assume it.

    Yet, when it comes to that which is composed of a code that puts Microsoft Windows to shame, and is infinitely more complicated–man, and the universe in which he lives–we hasten to deny the possibility of a Intelligent Designer or Developer, attributing the origin of man and the universe to anything but a Universal Mind, Intelligence or Intellect.

    Now who’s naive.

    If Windows was randomly created, we would be justified in our denial of an intelligent designer, but that’s not the case. We can see the logic of its development. Were it randomly created, the possibility of reverse engineering it would be practically impossible, and, further, it wouldn’t work.

    I contend: You can only reverse that which was intelligently designed and created. We give more deference, and benefit of the doubt scientifically, to Bill Gates and company, than we do to a Universal Mind and Intelligence behind all of creation.

    “Who says my life should be impossible? Do you think we are actually lying on a concrete slab somewhere in a cave having all of this “reality” feed to us in a tube or wire?”

    Your life is as impossible as the existence of God, but a nonetheless day-to-day reality. You’re right about the “tube or wire,” it’s called our five senses. Your reality, as you know it, can only be perceived by those senses. Without them, this world that you give so much bank to would cease to exist.

    And much of what these senses feed us are predigested by social and cultural norms. Yet, if you could see the world through unbiased eyes, you wouldn’t question the existence of God.

    You need to develop your sixth sense, that “supernatural sense” that will make the following vision of William Blake a reality for you:

    William Blake – Auguries of Innocence
    “To see a world in a grain of sand,
    And a heaven in a wild flower,
    Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
    And eternity in an hour…”

  13. 13 Deacon Blue
    August 16, 2009 at 9:39 pm

    Man, I take the day more or less off on Saturday in regards to blogging and spend Sunday at the beach, and look what happens?

    😉

    I have to go back through all this more closely later.

    But TWOM, one thing I must point out about magic/miracles/whatever is that “supernatural” really comes down to powers, energy or awareness being exercised in a manner that we don’t understand and/or cannot access (at least not yet). There is no reason to disbelieve that “higher” physics might exist with as much complexity as sub-atomic physics.

    Or, to put it another way, let’s look at resurrection.

    Once upon a time, a man died of a heart attack, and he stayed dead.

    Now, with drugs, defribulation, etc., you can sometimes bring life back.

    Bringing someone back from the dead is a matter of restoring the cells and restoring the electrical impulses, including memories. Who’s to say that isn’t possible? Not with means at our disposal, but that doesn’t make it impossible. All the things that we do now to clone cells, rejuvenate cells, etc. are things that would have been “magic” mere centuries ago.

    So, I think that dismissing God because “magic” doesn’t exist is a bit narrow-minded in that it assumes that all things that can be done are known to us. Just because we have a strong knowledge of physics, chemistry, etc. doesn’t mean there are things beyond it we haven’t discovered yet.

  14. 14 thewordofme
    August 16, 2009 at 10:39 pm

    Hi Lightworker,

    Wow, good answer. It’s going to take me a while to answer this one, have patience 🙂

  15. 15 thewordofme
    August 17, 2009 at 1:57 am

    Hello again Lightworker,

    I hope you are enjoying this discussion as much as I am.

    Sorry, I didn’t want to make it difficult…I’m open to any proofs that can be checked out independently and that is not 2000 years old and only supported by words/myths from Hebrew goat herders.

    “Magic: ‘Any art that invokes supernatural powers.’”

    You write:
    “By that definition of magic (and I must tread lightly here), a “divine agent,” in the strictest sense, is not required. This so-called magic occurs daily by non-divine agents. But you wouldn’t want to evoke their wrath, nor their displeasure.”

    O.K., I’ll bite. What are the non-divine agents you refer to here….Demons, Satan, etc.? Like God their existence is very debatable.

    You write:
    “It’s all the same stuff…’not existing in nature.’” It’s not really “all the same stuff.” True, God is all-in-all, but he’s not the direct source of what you call “magic.” Some practitioners of magic are using a source other than God, just as the magicians in Pharaoh’s court used a source other than the God Moses turned to perform his miracles.”

    There is no direct (or indirect) source for magic, and the people in Pharaoh’s court did not have magic…these are old stories/myths elements, not reality.

    I guide you to an article published in an Israeli newspaper in 1999 and partially quoted in Wikipedia and in its entirety in the official Israeli website, the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs official website at the address below and you will find a rather interesting article regarding the historicity of the Hebrew people, the Exodus, Joshua, Moses, the Monarchy, and early exploits of David and Saul.
    http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/MFAArchive/2000_2009/2003/9/King%20David%20and%20Jerusalem-%20Myth%20and%20Reality

    “In 1999, Herzog’s Haaretz weekly magazine cover page article “Deconstructing the walls of Jericho” attracted considerable public attention and debates. In this article Herzog claims that “the Israelites were never in Egypt, did not wander in the desert, did not conquer the land in a military campaign and did not pass it on to the 12 tribes of Israel. Perhaps even harder to swallow is the fact that the united monarchy of David and Solomon, which is described by the Bible as a regional power, was at most a small tribal kingdom. And it will come as an unpleasant shock to many that the God of Israel, Jehovah, had a female consort (Asherah) and that the early Israelite religion adopted monotheism only in the waning period (c920-900 BC ) of the monarchy and not at Mount Sinai”

    I submit to you that there was no Moses, Pharaoh, and court magicians confronting each other and turning rods into snakes and vice-versa, or plagues, and all the supernatural or magical stuff going on in the old stories/myths. Very good evidence that most of Exodus (and Genesis) is untrue.

    You write:
    “Yet, regardless of source, phenomenon occur that we attribute to one source or the other. Where we err is in believing that there’re natural and supernatural phenomenon, and that the two never meet. Just as with the mind/matter dilemma that I referenced, and you chose to ignore, all is either mind or matter, or natural or supernatural. Guess where I stand on the issue?”

    I have never seen a phenomenon that I would classify as supernatural. The only instances of supernatural I have heard of are in the Bible or in known fictional stories or books. Perhaps I am too dense, but I see no dilemma in mind/matter. Maybe you could explain it better to me.

    You write:
    “Yet, one example that fits the bill for me, but probably discounted by you, is the phenomenon that is called Near Death Experience.”

    I have heard of it of course, but at this time I am unconvinced that it is that persons soul, or whatever, ascending to heaven. I guess I am still waiting for the science to come in. Are you aware of any other published articles on this phenomenon? Was the article in the Lancet on Dec. of last year?

    You write:
    “As a eternal beneficiary of that which you call the “supernatural,” I would agree: you don’t need to know of its existence (the supernatural) to be “happy and productive.” You benefit from it whether you acknowledge it or not, or know of it or not.”

    I benefit from what supernatural agent?

    You write:
    “If you choose to live your life this way, so be it. But beware of not believing in an afterlife. As you fall asleep so shall you awake, or not. If you don’t believe in an afterlife, you will carry that belief to the other side, and remain in your slumber indefinitely, and will resist any efforts to be awaken.”

    O.K. you’re losing me here with talk of the “other side.” I’m hoping that you are talking about heaven here, not some kind of Houdini thing. 🙂 Of course not believing in the Christian view of our world, universe, etc., I don’t think/believe there is an “other side.”

    “Who made the star dust, you ask?

    “Who made God, I ask?”

    You answer:
    “Even that line of succession is not without mystery. We’re still searching for the “missing link.” Some believe that it’s been found, but that’s another story for another day. Tracing human history and development is a small element of the “miracle” that is man.”

    There is no missing link anymore. We’ve already found many links to animals in the past and we have found enough intermediate “Homo’s” such as habilis, erectus, Neanderthalis, etc., to understand what has happened. Those Homo’s of the past used tools in an ever increasing intelligent way and we are no doubt descended from them at some point. Ask your local paleoanthropologist how the line goes. Ask him/her about the ones in China half a million years ago using fire and living in caves.

    You write:
    “Man is not alive. He’s being kept alive. Can I prove it? Not to your satisfaction.”

    And:
    And God’s existence? I’ve written on that elsewhere, under the heading, “The Nature of God.” God has always existed, and is an existence, and not a being. “Something” is the real and eternal. Nothingness has never existed, making God a miracle unto himself.”

    Funny I sure feel alive. When I pinch myself it hurts. I can plan things for the future and execute those plans; I can still use tools and cogitate upon my navel.

    Now you’re getting all metaphysical on me here. I suppose you will tell me that everything must have a beginning or creator, but somehow God is immune from this conundrum. I have not got to that point in my musings yet, but I know that the problem seems insurmountable now, and I will continue to muse upon it. 🙂

    You write:
    “Studying the physicality of humans gives you only one half of the equation, and the lesser part. Because the world of spirit (or the supernatural) does not lend itself to observation and manipulation with matter-based instruments, that world is largely unknown to scientists, and they seem to like it that way.”

    Getting too metaphysical for me here. If the supernatural does not lend itself to observation then how do we know it exists? I’ve never experienced it, have you?

    You write:
    “Yet, despite the obvious separation, the lines of inquiry are beginning to blur. Consciousness, that which seems to behave independently of matter, has come under scientific scrutiny, and is said to account for certain observable material phenomena.”

    Consciousness that exists independently from the brain perhaps you could explain this further.

    You write:
    “The legendary particle that physicists thought explained the basic question of why matter has mass, often called the “God particle,” probably does not exist, and now a few scientists are beginning to consider the idea that what might be there is not a particle at all, but some sort of consciousness or intelligence, that would mean that the universe does indeed have a God.”

    I anxiously await the final proofs on this.

    Yes I follow your analogy with Windows and the “Code of Life” but at this point there are too many open questions and undiscovered science for me to go there yet, even though it promises to be fertile ground for both of us.

    At this point I am still into the Bible and how many things in it can be disproven. At what point does religion become moot when its founding book and stories are exposed as false? How many stories have to be proven to be false before it falls apart? The circumstantial evidence is very strong and getting stronger, not weaker, as the years go by.

    You write:
    “Your life is as impossible as the existence of God, but a nonetheless day-to-day reality. You’re right about the “tube or wire,” it’s called our five senses. Your reality, as you know it, can only be perceived by those senses…”

    I can prove my existence to others of the human race, and yes it does require the use of at least two or three of the senses…no problem there. What I (or you) can’t do is prove the existence of God. As it stands now I can’t prove that God does NOT exist, but that circumstantial evidence mentioned above is, as I said, getting stronger.

    You write:
    “And much of what these senses feed us are predigested by social and cultural norms. Yet, if you could see the world through unbiased eyes, you wouldn’t question the existence of God.”

    Why wouldn’t I question his existence? At the age of 13 I disengaged from religion as I thought the stories from the Bible were untrue and this was with no input at all…from anyone. Then you think; if the book is bogus…what about the Deity it talks about? From the age of 13 until the advent of the internet and the very easy collecting of information, I relied on my logical interpretation of what the Bible was saying…and truthfully I made some of the discoveries that I latter found on the internet by myself, without input.

    Enter the internet and you start finding more stuff then you can imagine that question the very foundations of ALL religions, not just Christianity. You probably think it’s the Devil or Demons or some such stuff, but all it is is information, raw and pure…you have to make the links or connections yourself.

    The closest I can come to believing in a Deity is one who starts the process and walks (or floats) away, never to be seen again. A God who watches over sparrows and interferes with Jewish life is, with respect, a ridiculous concept. Also, why would he start this silly melodrama of sin and redemption and Flood and Armageddon and commit genocide to so many of his creations?

    God makes no sense and I reject the concept and melodrama.

    But, that’s just my opinion…:-)

    Peace–twom

  16. 16 LightWorker
    August 17, 2009 at 5:41 pm

    Bear with me TWOM. I’ll respond soon.

  17. 17 thewordofme
    August 18, 2009 at 12:40 am

    Hi Deacon,

    Sorry I didn’t answer sooner; it took forever to reply to Lightworker and was too tired afterwards.

    Beach!!! You live near a Beach??? Man I’m Jealous.

    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. Arthur C. Clarke said this a few years back and it is true to a certain degree. So do you think there is some civilization out there that’s millions and millions of years older than ours and seeding the universe? If God created the universe as told in the Bible, ex-nihilo or ex-deo, that IS magic or supernatural, not manipulation of natural forces.

    You of course will know the problem with the resurrection stories, but I will list them anyway.

    Who went to the tomb?
    Mary alone (John)
    Mary and another Mary (Matthew)
    Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of Jesus and Salome (Mark)
    Women who had accompanied Jesus from Galilee to Jerusalem…maybe Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary mother of James and others. (Luke)

    Had the stone already been rolled away from the tomb?
    Yes (Mark)
    An Angel rolled it away while the women were there (Matthew)

    What or Who did they see there?
    An Angel (Matthew)
    A young man (Mark)
    Two men (Luke)
    No one (John)

    What were the women told?
    Tell the disciples to go to Galilee where Jesus will meet them. (Mark)
    Remember what Jesus had told them while in Galilee, that he would die and rise again. (Luke)
    Then the women tell the disciples what they heard and saw (Matthew)
    They do not tell anyone (Mark)
    These two different stories will have great significance later that appears to be irreconcilable.

    If they tell someone, who is it?
    The eleven disciples (Matthew)
    The eleven disciples and “others” (Luke)
    Simon Peter and another anonymous disciple (John)

    What do the Disciples do?
    Nothing because Jesus immediately appears to them (Matthew)
    They do not believe the women (Luke)
    They go to the tomb to see for themselves (John)

    Remember that the writers of these stories had no idea that their works would end up side-by-side in a single book. Also we know that the Gospels were not written by the alleged authors, we in fact, do not know who wrote them and we can’t be sure we have the actual words or story of Jesus as none of the writers were eye-witnesses. So there is a real possibility that the resurrection story is or was manipulated.

    My feeling on the book is that you cannot just read and accept it at face value; you must do what the Bible scholars started doing about 300 years ago. If you know anyone who has gone to theological seminary (not fundamentalist) ask them what they teach about a few things such as we talk about here, you may be surprised. All of this assumes you want to actually learn the real Christian story.

  18. 18 LightWorker
    August 18, 2009 at 4:24 am

    “Magic: ‘Any art that invokes supernatural powers.’”

    You write:
    “By that definition of magic (and I must tread lightly here), a “divine agent,” in the strictest sense, is not required. This so-called magic occurs daily by non-divine agents. But you wouldn’t want to evoke their wrath, nor their displeasure.”

    I’m not comfortable discussing this aspect of magic with you on a blog. This is a discussion that is best discussed with as few eyes as possible peering over one’s shoulder.

    You’re not an adept in these things, and are not aware of the mystical world around you, and how that mysticism is currently being used. If you’re e-mail accessible, I’ll share, but you’ll remain as incredulous about that as you are now about the existence of God, or any other supernatural source.

    “O.K., I’ll bite. What are the non-divine agents you refer to here….Demons, Satan, etc.? Like God their existence is very debatable.”

    The only thing that I’ll say here is that they’re very human, but very skilled at what they do. They laugh at your myopic view of the world, and they flourish because of your (most humans) obstinacy to believe only sense testimony. They exist at the edge of your world, confident that you’ll stay away from the precipice for fear of falling in.

    “There is no direct (or indirect) source for magic, and the people in Pharaoh’s court did not have magic…these are old stories/myths elements, not reality.”

    I will not attempt to counter your efforts to debunk the Bible. I’ve read much of what you wish to direct me to. I’m familiar with the writings, and frankly, I’m not impressed. The Bible has only one purpose: to be a guide. It’s a guidebook for the development of the soul, the evolution of the soul, as it were.

    Whether it’s seen as history, the word of God, the development of social constructs, it still has only one purpose: to guide.

    And regardless of it’s historicity, and whether its various events and personages can be proven to have existed, matter little to me. The book is far more important than that.

    Its meaning will forever elude you, because you’re reading it with the wrong eyes. Spiritual vision is necessary. And that must be developed. Going to church won’t develop it. Reading the Bible daily won’t develop it. Let me illustrate it this way: a farmer looks at the land in one way, a geologist another; an astrologer looks at the stars in one way and astronomers and astrophysicists another.

    Without eyes to see, you won’t see.

    Emanuel Swedenborg discovered that the Bible has both an interior and exterior meaning. In this he was right. You’d be amazed what’s there. It’s more than stories and myths. Of late, the Bible code has received a great deal of attention. Do you know of it? I’m not saying that I subscribe to it, but I offer it as a way of stating the intricacies, the multilayered existence, of what you see as mythical, and therefore, impractical.

    “I submit to you that there was no Moses, Pharaoh, and court magicians confronting each other and turning rods into snakes and vice-versa, or plagues, and all the supernatural or magical stuff going on in the old stories/myths. Very good evidence that most of Exodus (and Genesis) is untrue.”

    Believe what you like. As I stated before, the stories that you’re diminishing by calling them myths carry far greater meaning than you know, and that meaning exists at many levels, and can be interpreted on many levels.

    “I have never seen a phenomenon that I would classify as supernatural. The only instances of supernatural I have heard of are in the Bible or in known fictional stories or books. Perhaps I am too dense, but I see no dilemma in mind/matter. Maybe you could explain it better to me.”

    The mind-body dilemma arises because of the opposing natures of the two phenomena: mind is patently unlike the body but both exists simultaneously–hence the dilemma. Others have summed it up this way: Either all is mind, or all is physical (matter). It’s very unlikely that both states coexist, but they do.

    The subject has been grist for philosophers as well as scientists, and nothing definitive has been settled on, no consensus reached.

    A popular book on the subject has this to say:

    “Conscious experience presents a deep puzzle. On the one hand, a fairly robust materialism must be true in order to explain how it is that conscious events causally interact with non-conscious, physical events. On the other hand, we cannot explain how physical phenomena give rise to conscious experience.

    “In this wide-ranging study, Joseph Levine explores both sides of the mind-body dilemma, presenting the first book-length treatment of his highly influential ideas on the ‘explanatory gap,’ the fact that we can’t explain the nature of phenomenal experience in terms of its physical realization.”

    And the author sums up his findings thusly: “Levine concludes that in the foreseeable future consciousness will remain a mystery.” Purple Haze: The Puzzle of Consciousness, Joseph Levine

    My whole life has been lived straddled two worlds. I say straddled, although for me the natural and supernatural worlds blend as one. I don’t see the lines of demarcation that others have drawn. If you have devoted your life almost exclusively to your physical senses, and have not sought to develop the other (call it supernatural, or a sixth sense, or spiritual sense) then you’re only half alive, only half engaged in your world, and only partly conscious.

    But that was the choice you made. And it’s not a bad choice. Many have made it. Such a choice has its purpose, and its value.

    My choice was different. I chose to live out this lifetime more aware, and awareness has been its mark. I have for the most of my life been an out-of-body explorer. There are other such explorers. Many have had the experience at least once, and many, like me, have had thousands of such explorations.

    Should you believe me? Of course not. Why should you? You have lived your life within the borders of your physical senses, and that constraint alone will cast doubt on another reality, and another human potential.

    I’m not sure what you would classify as supernatural. Would it be supernatural to control the weather, to heal yourself and others, to leave your physical body almost at will, to see the future, and the past, to predict earthquakes? All these things I have done during my lifetime, and more.

    Should you believe me? Of course not. Why should you?

    Frankly, I hesitate to reveal this much on a public blog. The world is not what it seems. There’s much lurking just below the surface, and hiding in plain sight. And again, without eyes to see it, you remain blind to it.

    “I have heard of it [NDE’s] of course, but at this time I am unconvinced that it is that persons soul, or whatever, ascending to heaven. I guess I am still waiting for the science to come in. Are you aware of any other published articles on this phenomenon? Was the article in the Lancet on Dec. of last year?”

    There are books written, one by a noted heart surgeon, Dr. Raymond Moody, who has been a pioneer in bringing this phenomenon before the public. His book is titled, “Life After Life: The Investigation of a Phenomenon–Survival of Bodily Death.”

    The Lancet article may be found here as well as others: http://www.thelancet.com/search/results?searchTerm=near+death+experience&fieldName=ArticleTitle&year=&volume=&page=&journalFromWhichSearchStarted=

    But if you’re waiting for science to prove or disprove the phenomenon, you may be waiting for a very long time.

    “I benefit from what supernatural agent?”

    “If the supernatural does not lend itself to observation then how do we know it exists? I’ve never experienced it, have you?”

    Yes I have. It is observable. Today’s man-made instruments can’t detect its existence, but merely measure its grossest aspects. Its more refine features go undetectable.

    Without supernatural intervention your physical body could not survive. It is your astral body that’s keeping your physical body alive. You have a soul, but it appears to be separate from the astral body, although that’s not truly accurate, and I will not take time now to discuss the various differences. This astral body is mistakenly called the soul, but it’s merely one aspect of your overall selfhood. Your astral body is a duplicate of the physical down to the wrinkles in your flesh.

    Were you to touch it, it would feel like flesh. In fact, when you rub your hands together you are touching it (your astral body). Your physical body doesn’t experience touch (It has no feelings.). That’s an illusion. And if you touch that which is dead, you get what is called an “echo,” a reverberation of feeling (a snap back) from that which has been touched. For that reason, that which is dead doesn’t feel like that which is alive.

    The umbilical cord that keeps an unborn child alive while in the mother’s womb is reproduced at the astral level. From this astral body silver cords extend, bundling at the area of the body where the coccyx resides, which is not a vestigial tail, but a physical representation of the astral cord. From there it attaches as one cord to some vital place on the body–the heart, back of the head, etc. You could say that you’re existing in the “womb of life.”

    There’s more to the cord, but I won’t elaborate at this time.

    That book of myths you call the Bible mentions the “silver cord” once. And it is correct in saying, when the silver cord is loosed, the body dies, unless, of course, it is kept alive by man-made intervention, a life-support system replacing the one that has abandoned the body.

    How do I know these things? As I’ve stated, I’ve ventured out from my physical body thousands of times, have conducted experiments, and have learned how the spiritual and physical cooperate, and the method by which it’s done.

    Through the cord the physical body receives both the intelligence and the life force to keep it alive. Your astral body has properties that the physical body does not share. It can stretch. It is sentient without feeling pain. It can fly. A delightful feature. You’ve got to try it.

    As an out of body explorer, I have all the advantages of someone who’s having a Near Death Experience (NDE) without the obvious downside.

    “Consciousness that exists independently from the brain perhaps you could explain this further.”

    Once outside of the body, you don’t need the physical body in order to walk, move objects, or the brain to think. You have a consciousness that operates independently of the brain. Most communication is done telepathically, not requiring lips, although you have them, and may use them to speak as you do in the physical.

    This is also true when inside the body. Inside the body (not an accurate description), consciousness is restricted by the brain which it surrounds (telepathic communication becomes harder, for example, but is still possible). The astral body does not reside inside the body, but around it. Were it not for the magnetic attraction between the two bodies, you’d drift away into the astral sphere. During sleep, you do this naturally, and, of course, as an out-of-body traveler. Outside the body, the silver cord keeps you tethered to the physical, or you’d never return.

    “O.K. you’re losing me here with talk of the ‘other side.’ I’m hoping that you are talking about heaven here, not some kind of Houdini thing. 🙂 Of course not believing in the Christian view of our world, universe, etc., I don’t think/believe there is an ‘other side.'”

    I know, and that might be your undoing, at least for a time and a time. Christians are not the only religious body that believes in an afterlife. The ancients believed in it, and prepared in advance to partake of it once they left this world. This world is not your home. You will return from whence you came, well, almost. I say almost, because you came directly from the God source, and are One with it.

    This is esoteric and metaphysical and won’t advance our discussion, unless, of course, you’re interested.

    “At this point I am still into the Bible and how many things in it can be disproven. At what point does religion become moot when its founding book and stories are exposed as false? How many stories have to be proven to be false before it falls apart? The circumstantial evidence is very strong and getting stronger, not weaker, as the years go by.”

    The stories are only “false” because you’re reading them in a certain way. For me they hold many truths, and is a continual source of knowledge, and understanding. But this is not knowledge that guides your understanding of your day-to-day physical existence, but your day-to-day spiritual existence, the progress of the soul.

    If you insist that every jot and tittle be explained without seeing the larger picture, you will “strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.” The seeming discrepancies, if seen from a grander view, harmonizes even that which appears to contradict. But that will be hard to appreciate with a human, limited, one-dimensional view of things.

    “I can prove my existence to others of the human race, and yes it does require the use of at least two or three of the senses…no problem there. What I (or you) can’t do is prove the existence of God. As it stands now I cant prove that God does NOT exist, but that circumstantial evidence mentioned above is, as I said, getting stronger.”

    Are you so sure I can’t “prove the existence of God”? It depends largely on what you’re willing to accept as proof. I said before that your physical existence is as impossible as the existence of God. What if I said that your physical existence and the existence of our world is a statistical improbability, unless we factor in a God intelligence, or someone, or something with sufficient know-how to ascertain that mission-critical events take place to create our complicated world and the multitudinous life forms upon it.

    Would you believe in the Laws of Probability? You will need a .pdf reader to access the following article. If you can’t access it, let me know. I’ll find another way to deliver it. The information here is critical to my argument.
    http://downloads.pleaseconvinceme.com/files/02%20Course%202%20-%20Theism/2%20-%20Articles/05%20-%20Evidence%20for%20God%20fro..

    “The closest I can come to believing in a Deity is one who starts the process and walks (or floats) away, never to be seen again. A God who watches over sparrows and interferes with Jewish life is, with respect, a ridiculous concept. Also, why would he start this silly melodrama of sin and redemption and Flood and Armageddon and commit genocide to so many of his creations?

    “God makes no sense and I reject the concept and melodrama.”

    The God of your understanding is not the God of mine. Let me tell you a little about my God. He doesn’t interfere unless invited. He is the Grand Observer, but not the Mindful Meddler. And the “melodrama” that you speak of would take some time to hash out and explain. Many Christian concepts center upon a God that condemns and punishes, but in that they have it wrong. Or let’s say: misinterpreted.

    Of course the God that you described makes no sense. The God you described makes no sense to me. But I do understand the reasoning behind the concepts, and why they’re perpetuated, and toward what end. And it’s not as nefarious as you might think. There’re good reasons for these so-called misinterpretations to persist.

    The “Flood” that you referred to is ripe with knowledge, the understanding of which adds to the informational storehouse of the soul, and its ultimate purpose which is to experience itself, to experience fullest glory.

    God is, I’m afraid, closer than hands and feet, but he only assists us when he’s called upon to do so. No call, no assistance. He doesn’t interfere with freewill. Ever!

    God watches over “sparrows,” because he is the sparrow. He watches over us, because he is us. It would be like saying I don’t watch over my hand, because it’s part of the arm. As the god of our body, we give every part of our self the attention it’s due regardless of the appendage to which it’s attached. And if our hand cry out in pain, we assist. Most of the time we’re content to leave in alone.

    “Why wouldn’t I question his existence [God]?”

    You do so because your eyes are biased. You see without seeing. You hear without hearing. You need to develop your inner sight, and your inner hearing.

    Once that is done, you’ll be amazed just how complex your world actually is, how much more spiritual than material, more subject to your consciousness, your thoughts, your words, and your beliefs than you could have ever imagined or pondered.

    There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
    Than are dreamt of in your philosophy [or science]. Hamlet/Shakespeare

  19. 19 Deacon Blue
    August 18, 2009 at 10:22 am

    Fortunately, TWOM, I’m too hot, sweaty and tired to think right now, so I probably won’t respond for a day or so. That should give you time to fully take in Light Worker’s response.
    😉

    Thanks to both of you for such a lively disucssion. A pity I’ve only been able to skim it so far, but I’ll read it in more detail soon.

  20. 21 thewordofme
    August 19, 2009 at 2:35 am

    Hi Lightworker,

    Sorry to take so long to answer, our little granddaughter was visiting and she is of the age that demands (and deserves) constant attention.

    Quite a bit of the beginning of your post I must cogitate on as it sounds a little new age/ metaphysical, and I haven’t yet been able to grasp any truths from the subjects they preach on.

    Me:
    “O.K., I’ll bite. What are the non-divine agents you refer to here….Demons, Satan, etc.? Like God their existence is very debatable.”

    You answer:
    The only thing that I’ll say here is that they’re very human, but very skilled at what they do. They laugh at your myopic view of the world, and they flourish because of your (most humans) obstinacy to believe only sense testimony. They exist at the edge of your world, confident that you’ll stay away from the precipice for fear of falling in.

    You’re trying to be mystical here….right? Sounds like the beginning of a Dan Brown novel.

    You write:
    “You’re not an adept in these things, and are not aware of the mystical world around you, and how that mysticism is currently being used. If you’re e-mail accessible, I’ll share, but you’ll remain as incredulous about that as you are now about the existence of God, or any other supernatural source.”

    Again with the mystical. O.K. I’ll bite, billmylab atsign yahoo dot com

    You write:
    The Bible has only one purpose: to be a guide. It’s a guidebook for the development of the soul, the evolution of the soul, as it were.
    Whether it’s seen as history, the word of God, the development of social constructs, it still has only one purpose: to guide.
    And regardless of its historicity, and whether its various events and personages can be proven to have existed, matter little to me. The book is far more important than that.

    Well the Old Testament was meant solely to guide the Hebrew tribe through the vicissitudes of life and teach them how to worship THEIR god. With hundreds of tribes all around and most of them trying to kill each other or steal each other’s women. The book THEY (not god) wrote was for their own people and was written by people barely removed from sheep-herding. It is solely a product of its time, no evidence what-so-ever that it was inspired by a god. As a guide book
    for the Hebrews. How can a book that is telling false stories/myths and talking of a false god be seen as a guide book for anything meaningful?

    You write:
    “Emanuel Swedenborg discovered that the Bible has both an interior and exterior meaning. In this he was right. You’d be amazed what’s there…”

    I have actually read a bit about Swedenborg a few years ago, I will have to revisit him, as I don’t remember anything extraordinary about him and the New Church.

    You write:
    “The mind-body dilemma arises because of the opposing natures of the two phenomena: mind is patently unlike the body but both exists simultaneously–hence the dilemma. Others have summed it up this way: Either all is mind, or all is physical (matter). It’s very unlikely that both states coexist, but they do.”

    I have no dilemma with my mind/body. They get along perfectly fine with each other. 🙂 Seriously though, I do not understand any of this…I don’t see the problem.

    You write:
    “My whole life has been lived straddled two worlds. I say straddled, although for me the natural and supernatural worlds blend as one. I don’t see the lines of demarcation that others have drawn. If you have devoted your life almost exclusively to your physical senses, and have not sought to develop the other (call it supernatural, or a sixth sense, or spiritual sense) then you’re only half alive, only half engaged in your world, and only partly conscious.”

    I cannot see, nor do I feel, anything supernatural in this world. I dream and have out of body experiences, and fly, and find myself naked in front of my six grade class, but I have never felt myself in a spiritual place or felt supernatural forces at work in my world.

    You write:
    “I’m not sure what you would classify as supernatural. Would it be supernatural to control the weather, to heal yourself and others, to leave your physical body almost at will, to see the future, and the past, to predict earthquakes? *All these things I have done during my lifetime, and more.”

    Yes any of the above would qualify, and…*you’re pwng me…right? Email address above.

    I already have the Lancet on my bookmarks so I will peruse the stories as my time allows.

    Me:
    “If the supernatural does not lend itself to observation then how do we know it exists? I’ve never experienced it, have you?”

    You answer:
    “Yes I have. It is observable. Today’s man-made instruments can’t detect its existence, but merely measure its grossest aspects. Its more refine features go undetectable.”
    Proof of the above would be in order now.

    You write:
    “Without supernatural intervention your physical body could not survive. It is your astral body that’s keeping your physical body alive. You have a soul, but it appears to be separate from the astral body, although that’s not truly accurate, and I will not take time now to discuss the various differences. This astral body is mistakenly called the soul, but it’s merely one aspect of your overall selfhood. Your astral body is a duplicate of the physical down to the wrinkles in your flesh.”

    From Wikipedia:
    “The astral body is a subtle body posited by many religious philosophers, intermediate between the intelligent soul and the physical body, composed of a subtle material. The concept ultimately derives from the philosophy of Plato: it is related to an astral plane, which consists of the planetary heavens of astrology. The term was adopted by nineteenth-century Theosophists and neo-Rosicrucians.”

    Lightworker, astrology and astral planes and bodies are even further out there than the Christian religion. With respect, I reject these beliefs totally…there is even less evidence for those arts than there is for religion.

    Me:
    “Consciousness that exists independently from the brain perhaps you could explain this further.”

    You write:
    “Once outside of the body, you don’t need the physical body in order to walk, move objects, or the brain to think. You have a consciousness that operates independently of the brain. Most communication is done telepathically, not requiring lips, although you have them, and may use them to speak as you do in the physical.”

    This is what I experience in dreams there is no magic or supernatural here, it is merely brain workings.

    You write:
    “I know, and that might be your undoing, at least for a time and a time. Christians are not the only religious body that believes in an afterlife. The ancients believed in it, and prepared in advance to partake of it once they left this world. This world is not your home. You will return from whence you came, well, almost. I say almost, because you came directly from the God source, and are One with it.”

    Men from time immemorial have wanted to believe in an afterlife (in early times life was short and cruel) and of course religions have been formed to further these wishes and gain converts by building a better afterlife. Again…no proofs what-so-ever. Only words in a old book.

    You write:
    “The stories are only “false” because you’re reading them in a certain way. For me they hold many truths, and is a continual source of knowledge, and understanding. But this is not knowledge that guides your understanding of your day-to-day physical existence, but your day-to-day spiritual existence, the progress of the soul.”

    I’ve tried to find my soul without any luck; could you perhaps help me find it? I’ve always felt it was that spark that means we’re alive, not a physical thing.

    You write:
    “If you insist that every jot and tittle be explained without seeing the larger picture, you will “strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.” The seeming discrepancies, if seen from a grander view, harmonizes even that which appears to contradict. But that will be hard to appreciate with a human, limited, one-dimensional view of things.”

    I really think I see the bigger picture, unlike many people who defend religion by trying to explain all those discrepancies and untruths. For almost three years now I have been exploring almost all aspects of the Christian religion and consequently Islam and Jewish faiths. I submit to you that the world was a far better place before the Jews started up this three part monotheism. Jews Christians and Muslims have ruined civilization with their constant bickering, backstabbing, and killings of each other and spilling over into killing those who don’t agree… whatever their religion.

    You write:
    “Are you so sure I can’t “prove the existence of God”? It depends largely on what you’re willing to accept as proof. I said before that your physical existence is as impossible as the existence of God. What if I said that your physical existence and the existence of our world is a statistical improbability, unless we factor in a God intelligence, or someone, or something with sufficient know-how to ascertain that mission-critical events take place to create our complicated world and the multitudinous life forms upon it.”

    And:
    “Would you believe in the Laws of Probability? You will need a .pdf reader to access the following article. If you can’t access it, let me know. I’ll find another way to deliver it. The information here is critical to my argument.
    http://downloads.pleaseconvinceme.com/files/02%20Course%202%20-%20Theism/2%20-%20Articles/05%20-%20Evidence%20for%20God%20fro.. “

    Regarding probability theory, with respect the above website attempts to prove the existence of God by listing how improbable it would be for everything to come together perfectly to allow life, and it doesn’t achieve what it tries to do because it uses a bad premise.

    “It is not the environment of earth that conforms to the needs of life; rather it is the function of life to conform to the features of the available environment. As a single example, if the Earth were too hot for the proteins currently present in our bodies, the organisms on earth would be composed of different proteins.

    Life adapts to fit the niche, not the other way around.
    A given living thing is not perfectly suited to life on the whole Earth – only in a very small subset of the Earth’s environmental scope. Yet, the entire Earth, with the exception of the most hostile parts of its core and the most rarefied heights of its atmosphere, is home to life.” From the Dawkins website.

    Think of the anaerobic bacteria living in complete darkness and absence of oxygen for millions of years in a 3 or 4 mile deep lake in Antarctica. Think of the life living around the incredibly hot thermal vents over a mile deep in the oceans-in total darkness, and depending on chemicals from the vents instead of photosynthesis. Think of the bacterium’s that live in JP-5 jet fuel. To quote from Jurassic Park…”Life WILL find a way.”

    You write:
    “The God of your understanding is not the God of mine. Let me tell you a little about my God. He doesn’t interfere unless invited. He is the Grand Observer, but not the Mindful Meddler. And the “melodrama” that you speak of would take some time to hash out and explain. Many Christian concepts center upon a God that condemns and punishes, but in that they have it wrong. Or let’s say: misinterpreted.”

    What you are saying about your god is not how the Bible describes him or how the majority of Christians understand him to be. The god of the OT is a meddling, bad tempered genocidal killer. In the NT Paul takes over and mellows god out and mostly keeps him behind the curtains—out of site—out of mind—maybe we can redeem this thing and make god a “God of Love.”

    You write:
    “The “Flood” that you referred to is ripe with knowledge, the understanding of which adds to the informational storehouse of the soul, and its ultimate purpose which is to experience itself, to experience fullest glory.”

    I’ve been trying to tell this same thing to Christians forever, those old stories are allegorical and not meant to be taken literally.

    You write:
    “God watches over “sparrows,” because he is the sparrow. He watches over us, because he is us. It would be like saying I don’t watch over my hand, because it’s part of the arm. As the god of our body, we give every part of our self the attention it’s due regardless of the appendage to which it’s attached. And if our hand cry out in pain, we assist. Most of the time we’re content to leave in alone.”

    So god resided in Hitler and Stalin and Mao and Pol Pot? He would of course reside in all those pedophile priests and bishops from the Catholic Church and the many, many Protestant preachers and ministers who cross the line into sex and sin. Also what about the god who resides in the poor children in the African countries who are starving to death in front of their parents and the vultures? What of the god who resides in the Bernie Madoff’s of the world, you know the corporate CEO’s who put profit above people’s lives and well being?

    Me:
    “Why wouldn’t I question his existence [God]?”

    You answer:
    “You do so because your eyes are biased. You see without seeing. You hear without hearing. You need to develop your inner sight, and your inner hearing.”

    To the contrary my dear correspondent; I question His existence because my eyes and ears and most importantly my brain is open to information and learning. I see people and after a short time I “know” them in an analytical way. I hear the inflections and gestures in peoples speech and I know them. I know I am not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but I get by and learn quickly.

    I’m having a great time here…thanks for the mind stretching.

    Deacon I hope you don’t mind that we are taking up your space so much. If you do please tell me. twom

  21. 22 Deacon Blue
    August 19, 2009 at 10:14 am

    TWOM, refer to comment #19 by me….I have no problem with it at all.

  22. August 20, 2009 at 3:34 pm

    TWOM

    You seem up on the material. Have scientists determined how animate life formed from inanimate life yet?

  23. 24 thewordofme
    August 20, 2009 at 3:51 pm

    Hi Big Man, thanks for the comment.

    No sir, but it will come. Science seems to be getting closer all the time.
    I predict within 25 years.

    Knowledge keeps advancing and religion has to keep retreating and making up new apologia. The only thing I worry about is that as religion keeps being kicked into the corner that the radicals will take over and we will enter a new dark-age.
    twom

  24. 25 LightWorker
    August 23, 2009 at 3:32 am

    TWOM, I’ve been really busy lately. And, I didn’t wish to rush an answer. The answer I provided may have more detail than is necessary, but that’s my shortcoming. I don’t do many things halfway.

    “How can a book that is telling false stories/myths and talking of a false god be seen as a guide book for anything meaningful?”

    I’m not sure what “meaningful” is to you. The Bible is a guidebook for the soul, the evolution of the soul. You have to understand why we’re here in the first place. What our soul is trying to do, and how it’s trying to do it. We’re here to re-create ourself through our experience of ourself. We’re here doing “God’s business.” Jesus said he was about his Father’s business. And so are we. What is man’s greatest desire? What will he risk life and limb to do?

    If you said to experience, you’d be 100% correct. More than anything, man wishes to experience. And if he can’t do it actually, he’ll do it vicariously. Sometimes, he calls it being entertained, but at bottom he wants to experience the good, the bad, and the ugly. You see, all of it serve us.

    This is why the world of relativity is so valuable, a thing is only known by virtue of its opposite. In a sense you can say up is defined by down, and good by evil, and vice versa. Without these competing dyads, we could not experience either.

    We know love, because of fear. Without fear we cannot experience love. Both emotions, actually the only two we have, as they give birth to all the others, create the illusions that we experience almost daily.

    Here are a few: Insufficiency is real. Ignorance is real. Disunity is real. Requirement is real. Superiority is real. Failure is real.

    These illusions served a purpose. That purpose has been fulfilled. They’re now contextually a part of our human existence, and can be set aside somewhat, and seen for what they are: illusions.

    The Book of Genesis tells us that man was made in the image and likeness of God. That statement serves as the beginning of man’s grand adventure in the flesh. And the Bible, those mythical stories as you’re inclined to call them, offer way markers in our spiritual development, providing information that we may use to gain insight into the process. Today’s Jews know this. And so do many others who take the time to delve below the surface of what’s been written.

    Nothing I say here will convince you otherwise. You can’t swim, and experience the flow of the river, if you’re not willing to jump in. You seem content to stay on shore. I say, Jump in.

    “Men from time immemorial have wanted to believe in an afterlife (in early times life was short and cruel) and of course religions have been formed to further these wishes and gain converts by building a better afterlife. Again…no proofs what-so-ever. Only words in a old book.”

    I am my own proof. Once you find the proof within, you won’t need to look further than your own existence. I know that I’m eternal. I know that I shall overcome death, for it doesn’t exist. Despite my years in this world, I cannot conceive of a time when I never was.

    That’s immortality. The words in that “old book” are a fire in my soul. I can look below the surface of it, and see myself. I can skim the surface and see what’s hidden in plain sight. Those words can heal, I tell you, as they have healed me.

    If I could, I’d give you a moment in my place, just so you could see what I see, and hear what I hear, but, alas, that power belongs to God alone.

    “I dream and have out of body experiences, and fly, and find myself naked in front of my six grade class, but I have never felt myself in a spiritual place or felt supernatural forces at work in my world.”

    True out-of-body experiences differ from dreams in remarkable ways. Not only are out-of-body experiences more lucid than dreams (granted, not all dreams lack lucidity), and are easily remembered, both for the short-term, and long-term, you’re conscious of your actions, as they’re self-directed.

    In an out-of-body state you can direct the locale of your interactions, choosing either the past, the future, or worlds parallel to your own.

    For example, during our nation’s civil war, I was a captured union officer, serving out the war in Libby Prison. I may have died during an escape attempt. Libby Prison: Facts, Discussion Forum, and Encyclopedia Article. Scroll down for more information.

    Robert Monroe chronicled many of his out-of-the body adventures in three books. Here’s a link to his institute: http://www.monroeinstitute.org/robert-monroe/. Spending some time at his site is an out-of-body experience all its own for those who believe that they’re limited by their body.

    “Seriously though, I do not understand any of this…I don’t see the problem [with mind/body].”
    Man’s mind, the seat of his consciousness, seems to operate within a physical world, actually interacting with it in an experiential way. Consciousness seems to emanate from a physical brain. Yet, it’s clear that brain is not consciousness. Further, mind seems to have an existence apart from its supposed physical source (the brain). The problem (dilemma) arises when an attempt is made to reconcile the two states. Because the two states are so dissimilar, they defy reconciliation. Matter can be seen, but not mind. The brain can be seen, but not consciousness.

    “It is not the environment of earth that conforms to the needs of life; rather it is the function of life to conform to the features of the available environment.”

    Using that logic, life should be found in deep space, the moon, mars, the sun, and every other planet in our solar system. And I’m not just talking about microorganisms.

    “Yet, the entire Earth, with the exception of the most hostile parts of its core and the most rarefied heights of its atmosphere, is home to life…”

    I’m reminded that the earth came first, and life second. If conditions for life had not been optimum on the planet, life would not have occurred. And our planet would have been as barren as Mars, Venus, and Jupiter.

    If there are places where life cannot thrive, or find a niche, life doesn’t always find a way. That life is adaptable speaks well of life (at least physical life), yet the argument concedes that life does not thrive in all settings–not all settings are hospitable. Therefore, life finds a way only when the way precedes it. Without the way, no life.

    Life did not come first, but the planet. Had the planet not maintain its improbable constants, it wouldn’t have existed in a state that would have supported life. The smallest error in the constants and the earth would have looked like the moon. That life exists in some unlikely places, the murky depths of the ocean, for example, tells us more about the unique, life-supporting conditions on our planet, than it does about the adaptability of life.

    What we see under ideal conditions, conditions conducive to life, is a world teeming not only with life, but a high-order of life. Without these very precise conditions, life as we know it would be highly improbable, if not impossible.

    It’s not that life found a way, but that the unique conditions of the planet, the fine-tuned constants, have given life a place where life may originate, and survive, although, occasionally, in some inhospitable places.

    The Intelligence of the universe chose these precise conditions, and those alone, to undergird the existence of life on the planet. Could it have chosen others? No doubt. But it didn’t.

    Know this: man was not the original inhabitants of the planet. The original inhabitants have since moved on.

    “What you are saying about your god is not how the Bible describes him or how the majority of Christians understand him to be. The god of the OT is a meddling, bad tempered genocidal killer. In the NT Paul takes over and mellows god out and mostly keeps him behind the curtains—out of site—out of mind—maybe we can redeem this thing and make god a ‘God of Love.’”

    God is to us as we believe he will be. If you don’t believe in him, conditions will be created to support that understanding. If you believe that he’s ill-tempered, or bellicose, he will be that in your affairs. If you believe that he’s love, he will be that, too.

    If you believe that you’re a chosen people, and that God will smite your enemies, and deal harshly with you if you step out of line (sin), then he will be that to you, as well.

    You see, you have freewill. That freewill extends to how you may perceive the nature of God, and experience him, whether you’re right about that nature or not. God doesn’t interfere, unless invited. He gives you what you expect, what you believe.

    Think of God as this gigantic mirror, as well as all of life. What you believe about either is reflected into your manifested reality. Regardless of how we perceive him, the true nature of God manages to seep through. And in the Old Testament we often see a contradictory God, one who can’t seem to make up his mind how he should be. That’s because man couldn’t make up his mind.

    When we get to the New Testament, God’s messengers are pretty much in agreement about his nature. He is Love.

    “So god resided in Hitler and Stalin and Mao and Pol Pot? He would of course reside in all those pedophile priests and bishops from the Catholic Church and the many, many Protestant preachers and ministers who cross the line into sex and sin. Also what about the god who resides in the poor children in the African countries who are starving to death in front of their parents and the vultures? What of the god who resides in the Bernie Madoff’s of the world, you know the corporate CEO’s who put profit above people’s lives and well being?”

    Let me state it this way: There’s nothing God is not. But he’s not the direct source of all that you see. Yes, we’re all a part of him. He is us, and we are him. Yet, if God [Love] was an elevated, living presence in each of these men, they would not have done the heinous things they did.

    Let me cut to the chase: Hitler went to heaven. There’s no other place for him to go. But know this: since we, all of us, created Hitler, were he to be damned, we would all be damned. How did we create him, you ask. We created the conditions that gave him birth and brought him forth. We did it with our collective beliefs. What are some of the things we believe in?

    We believe in superiority.
    We believe in separation.
    We believe in to the victor belongs the spoil.
    We believe in might is right.
    We believe in the survival of the fittest.
    We believe in charity begins at home.
    We believe in every man for himself.
    We believe in doing it to others before they can do it to us.
    We believe in no good deed goes unpunished.

    These are some of the real myths that plague our society, and mar our interpersonal relationships. There was a very popular book written some years ago, the title of which says it all: “Winning through Intimidation.”

    “I question His [God’s] existence because my eyes and ears and most importantly my brain is open to information and learning.”

    “I’ve tried to find my soul without any luck; could you perhaps help me find it? I’ve always felt it was that spark that means we’re alive, not a physical thing.”

    Your physical eyes and ears are opened to what they’re opened to, but those are not the eyes and ears of the soul. You need to find and open those eyes and ears. They are your inner eyes and ears. I can tell you how to find your soul, but it’s not a spark, but an entity, variously known as your “higher self,” your “God self,” or simply your “soul.”

    This entity or existence is androgynous, powerful, tall (eight feet or more), may show up in a number of ways, and may appear during some out-of-body explorations, standing behind you, or speaking from a position above you. This self is you, and you are it. There is no difference between it and God. It is all powerful. All knowing. And it’s in touch with all other souls

    Yes, I have seen my soul.

    Here’s how you may introduce yourself to him/her. Use meditation. Sit, lie down, whichever you prefer, in a quiet place. Close your eyes. Set your gaze between your eyes, near the center of your forehead, and peer into the darkness. Keep the mind quiet. Cease the chatter, that inner talking, and just stare into the darkness at the place I suggested.

    If the mind strays (It’s hard to keep it quiet, and focused.), gently bring it back to the task at hand. If you have do this often, don’t get flustered. Just remain calm and stay focused. It’s important to keep the chatter in your head to a minimum.

    At some point, you may see a flash of light, or a light play emanating from the area where you’re gazing. It may appear as white, gray, silver, blue, or blue gray. When you see the light, let it absorb your attention. Say, hello, this is the light of your soul winking back at you.

    It’s important to relax and not to rush things. After a time, you will find it easier and easier to find the light and entertain it. At some point, you may experience an exquisite side effect to all of this. You may experience a sensual feeling radiating from the gazed-upon spot, suffusing your body. This is normal. The feeling will be sensual without being sexually arousing (How’s that for a contradiction?).

    Do this little exercise at least twice a day, more often if possible, for a duration of at least 15 minutes. The regimen, if done persistently, and faithfully, will open those inner senses, and prepare you for other adventures into the supernatural.

    For some, this exercise develops their ability to see the light with ease. If that happens to you, e-mail me. I’ll prepare you for the next step. The next step is a doozy.

    Another way to contact the soul is by doing something creative. Write poetry. Draw or paint a picture (It doesn’t have to be a masterpiece.).

    And stay open. Don’t close your mind to this process, insisting that it’s a useless exercise that will come to naught. As I’ve said: Your beliefs are your reality.

    “This is the ultimate end of man, to find the One which is in him; which is his truth, which is his soul; the key with which he opens the gate of the spiritual life, the heavenly kingdom.”
    Rabindranath Tagore

  25. 26 thewordofme
    August 23, 2009 at 10:02 pm

    Lightworker…I seem to be coming down with the flu or something, reply will be delayed.

  26. 27 thewordofme
    August 30, 2009 at 12:37 am

    Hi Lightworker, thanks for your patience.

    Sorry to take so long to reply, it was a really bad week for me. Really busy at work, had three dentist appointments, and had some kind of flu or cold…not sure which. I’m on pain pills right now, so if some of my writing seems odd, blame the pills. 

    You spent a lot of time in writing your reply, and I do appreciate that, but you are seeing things and making conclusions about matters that I somehow cannot see or believe in.

    My world just does not have any magical paranormal qualities. Try as I might, I have looked for supernatural elements, spiritual beings, explanations that go beyond the natural, and I find, or see, nothing. I read some of these new age chronicles, books about UFO’s and alien pyramid builders, and things like Eric Von Danikin (sp.) wrote of, and I can’t see the possibility of what they are trying to construct.

    The Biblical myths are no better than any others you encounter from the same time period, as lots of them share common elements. Born of a virgin, born around December 25th.,resurrection at 3 days, 12 apostles, etc., etc.. The science of our day contradicts the old creation stories and I’m betting on the science, as its track record is 100% in regards to religion.

    I have tried to talk to God…He never answered. I have tried to look at natural things and posit that God did it, but the back of my mind figures out how nature did it. I have looked for, and tried to be open to the supernatural and I can’t seem to find it.

    In everything I look at in religion, I see the hand of man. The Bible has faaarrr to many problems to be seen as “God breathed” I see man’s hand, not a deity, in the entire book. If you follow the book from the very beginning you see how it is the work of men and institutions that have a self interest in establishing this falsehood as worthy of worship.

    Regarding the out-of-body experience you have touched on where you write: “For example, during our nation’s civil war, I was a captured union officer, serving out the war in Libby Prison. I may have died during an escape attempt…”

    No disrespect, but let’s just say that I find religion easier to believe in.

    You write:
    “I’m not sure what “meaningful” is to you. The Bible is a guidebook for the soul, the evolution of the soul. You have to understand why we’re here in the first place. What our soul is trying to do, and how it’s trying to do it. We’re here to re-create ourself through our experience of ourself. We’re here doing “God’s business.” Jesus said he was about his Father’s business. And so are we. What is man’s greatest desire? What will he risk life and limb to do?”

    There are people who need life to have a purpose and then there are people who don’t need a higher purpose…they just live and enjoy. I am the latter. The only reason I need to get out of bed in the morning is the fact that I’m alive and there are things to learn. I need no God to give me purpose or meaning in my life. The Golden Rule gives me all the morality I need, so I feel no need to go out and rape and plunder. 

    You say: “The Book of Genesis tells us that man was made in the image and likeness of God.”

    I say that God was made in the likeness of man. And man keeps giving this God…man-like attributes.

    You say: “We know love, because of fear. Without fear we cannot experience love.”

    I totally disagree with this. Without fear, we are able to experience the greatest love possible.

    You say: “…create the illusions that we experience almost daily.”

    I don’t experience daily illusions sir.

    Me: “It is not the environment of earth that conforms to the needs of life; rather it is the function of life to conform to the features of the available environment.”

    You: “Using that logic, life should be found in deep space, the moon, mars, the sun, and every other planet in our solar system. And I’m not just talking about microorganisms.”

    The environment of the earth was here first and when life happened it conformed to what was here already. Life started out as microorganisms and finding conditions that were within its range of tolerance…started evolving. Today we see microorganisms living in really adverse conditions in miscellaneous places pretty much staying microorganisms, but given better surroundings they flourish. So I would think that there are some things life would not tolerate and a large range of conditions that life can adapt to.

    Who’s to say that if we find and go to another planet that is missing one or more of the conditions in that long list you provided, that some form of life will be found? Because we have those conditions and have life does not mean that that is all that’s possible. Suppose we find a planet with a form of intelligent life and they have no God or Jesus…what then? If we go to a world like the above and they DO have a God and Jesus like ours…well then, there is the proof. We do not necessarily know the last word on life.

    One thing we do know however is that the entire universe is made up of the same chemicals, isotopes and processes, and stars are formed the same way throughout all the universe. Physics and the laws behind it is universe wide. If we can stop religion from causing our world to self-destruct, our future will be pretty interesting when we are able to explore other star systems.

    You write:
    “God is to us as we believe he will be. If you don’t believe in him, conditions will be created to support that understanding. If you believe that he’s ill-tempered, or bellicose, he will be that in your affairs. If you believe that he’s love, he will be that, too.

    No, God is described that way in the Old Testament. After all Christianity is a religion of the book. If the book describes him that way…that’s the way He is. It’s only when you get into the New Testament that Paul turns Him into a “God of Love”

    Lightworker, I’m getting tired…still not 100%…I’ll close now and take it up later. twom

  27. 28 LightWorker
    August 30, 2009 at 7:06 am

    TWOM, welcome back. I’m glad you’re feeling better. I appreciate your candor, and I understand your reluctance and that of others to believe in something so seemingly inaccessible, and implausible as the supernatural.

    So as not to court incredulity, I’ve held back, not willing to push so hard as to push you beyond a reasonable consideration of my experiences.

    I would urge you to try the regimen I suggested to connect with your soul. Try it as an experiment. I came across it first as a teenager years ago. Since then, I’ve encountered it again in the refined version I’ve provided.

    It was not, exactly, my first encounter with the supernatural, but it did serve to firmly ensconce me in a world beyond the physical.

    Scraping my pennies and nickles together, I purchased a book (title and author, I can’t remember) that specified the following exercise. The author had been laid up for weeks in a hospital room and created mind games to pass the time.

    For hours he would stare into the darkness of his mind. Nothing! Yet, he persisted. His persistence paid off. He caught the flicker of a light. As he looked on, day after day, the light grew, and expanded. And, as it grew and expanded, he begin to seem faces in the light. They’re weren’t familiar faces, but twisted, gnarled, ugly, and threatening.

    But he held on, until the light brought more serene images.

    This was as far as his account went. I was determined to go farther. He had been right about the hideous, threatening visages that emerged from the light. He had been right about the eventual serenity that was to come.

    For me the light seemed to have been alive. I sensed that I could direct it, if I chose to. As a child I didn’t have access to a public library or a museum. I wanted to see museums.

    I directed the light to transport me there. To my amazement, it did. Before me was the most wondrous of objects, and artifacts, and the strangest collections I’d ever seen. I found that I could walk among these objects, pick them up, handle them, and return them to their place.

    These excursion went on for sometime, night after night. At night, because it was the only time I could indulge my new-found ability, and ventures.

    The light appeared not to be restricted by time, space, distance, or any other limitations.

    After several weeks of this, I gave it up. Not because I wanted to, but because I hardly slept, and struggled to stay awake in class the following day.

    Why did I share this: I’m hoping to whet your appetite, to convince you to go forward with the exercise I outlined. What’cha got to lose?

    “The science of our day contradicts the old creation stories and I’m betting on the science, as its track record is 100% in regards to religion.”

    And that’s as it should be. Hold on to that which serves you. If science brings you the answers that satisfy your soul, embrace it.

    “I say that God was made in the likeness of man. And man keeps giving this God…man-like attributes.

    “You say: “We know love, because of fear. Without fear we cannot experience love.”

    “I totally disagree with this. Without fear, we are able to experience the greatest love possible.”

    Let me state it this way. Without darkness the light wouldn’t shine as bright. You are light. While in the midst of the light, all you knew was the light (but you couldn’t experience it). Knowing a thing is not the same as experiencing it. You knew that you were the light, but until that which was not the light (darkness/fear) came along, you couldn’t experience the light as light.

    Hence, without that which is not, that which is, is not. You see: the darkness doesn’t really exist. All is light. Darkness is the illusion by which the light can experience itself as the light.

    “We do not necessarily know the last word on life.”

    I agree. Actually, from my vantage point: Life exists everywhere. It fills all space. That which is life is not always seen as life. Because Life exists in a non-physical realm, supporting the material existence that you see, it seems transitory, and impermanent, although science concludes that energy (a form of life) may change form, but can’t be destroyed.

    Life has a metaphysical origin, and is not a physical phenomenon at all. There’s no life in matter. All is mind.

    “One thing we do know however is that the entire universe is made up of the same chemicals, isotopes and processes, and stars are formed the same way throughout all the universe. Physics and the laws behind it is universe wide….”

    Don’t be so sure: Science may disagree with that premise.

    The Missing Universe
    Why can we only account for 4% of the universe?

    The Pioneer Anomaly
    Why are these two spacecraft flouting the laws of the universe?

    Varying Constants
    Destabilizing our view of the universe…

    “As Einstein said about relativity, if one thing goes wrong, the whole theory falls apart like a house of cards. And in terms of the fundamental laws of physics and the universe — which are supposed to be universal — this could be the one thing

    “The fine structure constant is such a fundamental value that almost everything else is built on it, from the speed of light to the size of an electron. It’s supposed to be what makes the universe what it is.”

    I’ll let your pursue these anomalies, if you’re interested. There are others. Scientists are positing that physical laws may not be a constant throughout the universe. Nevertheless, general agreement on this and others are elusive.

    “God is to us as we believe he will be. If you don’t believe in him, conditions will be created to support that understanding. If you believe that he’s ill-tempered, or bellicose, he will be that in your affairs. If you believe that he’s love, he will be that, too.”

    “No, God is described that way in the Old Testament.”

    And that’s my point: We’re all creating God. You’re creating him. The Old Testament gives a description that corresponded with the beliefs and views held of God that were extant at that time.

    No one knows the true nature of God. All that we can tell is that he’s chameleon like: he conforms to our beliefs of him. Life does the same. It conforms to our beliefs. You get from it what you expect to get, no more, and no less. Does that make God and Life synonymous. You bet.

    In one of his current discussions I’ve been following but not commenting, Deacon Blue states that his religion has two constants, God and Jesus, and everything else is opened to interpretation.

    From my perspective, all is opened to interpretation, both God and Jesus. There are as many views of God as there are people to create them. God is not a constant in that sense: We’re continuously creating and recreating him in the sanctuary of our thoughts, and beliefs.

    No two persons hold the same view or image of God. It’s an impossibility. They may agree broadly, but at the experiential level full agreement is at best tangential, and nebulous. What we have, then, is as many Gods as there are people to believe in him, and no one view is absolute.

    “There are people who need life to have a purpose and then there are people who don’t need a higher purpose…they just live and enjoy. I am the latter. The only reason I need to get out of bed in the morning is the fact that I’m alive and there are things to learn. I need no God to give me purpose or meaning in my life. The Golden Rule gives me all the morality I need, so I feel no need to go out and rape and plunder.”

    This may come as a surprise or a shock (whichever): But I find your life’s manifesto similar to mine. Here’s my take: I don’t need life to have a purpose. In one sense, life has no purpose. I’m creating that purpose. Further, I have no needs. God has no needs. Deacon and I have pursued this in a previous discussion, and did not reach a meeting of the minds. And that is okay by me.

    I don’t need a higher purpose (whatever that mean). Do you mean a need to believe in God? If so, I have no need to believe in God. Further, God has no need for me, or you, to believe in him. It just so happens that the events of my life have pretty much made the existence or nonexistence of God a moot point. He has no need for you to believe one way or the other, because you’re doing voluntarily what he’d have you do, anyway.

    I, too, just live to enjoy. Yet, I’m not on a learning mission. I find that there’s nothing for me to learn. I’m a know-it-all. I know it all. Life for me is not about learning something, but about remembering something.

    Anyway, all that we gather through our five senses will at some point be proved to be wrong. I know you can’t accept that now. Science, I’m afraid, is busy learning what it will soon or later have to discard, as new information surfaces. And new information will always surface. How is that for chasing your tail, going fast backward, and putting the cart before the horse?

    And I, too, have no need for a God to give my life purpose or meaning. I am my own purpose. I am my own meaning. Truth is what I say it is. And I’m enamored of the Golden Rule as well. TWOM, I think we’d get alone swimmingly, despite your disbelief in a “higher power.”

    Here’s my standard and worldview:

    Nothing in my world is real.
    The meaning of everything is the meaning I give it.
    I am who I say I am.
    My experience is what I say it is.

    You see: I’ve taken it a step further than you. And, for sure, that next step will perhaps be greater than what you can take at this time.

    A careful analysis of that statement, a really close look, will reveal that that is the way it is for us all, whether we know it or not, accept it or not, or believe it or not.

    You are the reality that brings reality to your world. You are the meaning that brings meaning to your world. You are indeed Adam: You get to name it all. All the animals (living concepts: events, happenings, experiences) that you see in your midst.

    Without your divine selfhood, nothing exists. You bring all to life (to paraphrase a popular commercial). You, my friend, are a God unto yourself. And beside You, there is no God.

    I could pray that your eyes be opened, but that may not work. Your beliefs frame and buttress the structure of your experiences. And, as such, they’re pretty much inviolate.

    I hope you’re better soon.

  28. 29 Deacon Blue
    August 30, 2009 at 3:26 pm

    Just to clarify, Light Worker, I said (or at least I meant) that God and Jesus are the only two absolutes in Christianity. 😉 Probably the only absolute in religions as a whole is the notion of a higher spiritual power.

  29. 30 LightWorker
    August 30, 2009 at 6:33 pm

    “I said (or at least I meant) that God and Jesus are the only two absolutes in Christianity.”

    My bad, Deacon. But even that notion of absolutism is opened to interpretation.

    “Latter-day Saint theology maintains that Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost are three separate and distinct beings, though all eternal and equally divine, who together constitute the Godhead.”

    “Jehovah’s Witnesses believe Jesus to be God’s (or Jehovah’s) son, rather than being God himself.”

    “The Unity Church considers Jesus the master teacher and “way show-er”, citing Jesus’ frequent calls to emulate him rather than worship him, and the ability of others to be like him, such as in John 10:34 and John 14:12. Jesus is not worshiped as God, but regarded as someone who had achieved a complete connection with God the Father.”

    “Christadelphians believe that Jesus is literally God’s son, hence the Biblical title son of God,[235] not God the Son. They believe that Jesus was in God’s plan right from the beginning of creation,[236] but that he came into existence at his birth.”

    “Others believe that the one God, who revealed himself in the Old Testament as Jehovah, came to earth, taking on the human form of Jesus Christ. They believe Jesus is Jehovah, is the Holy Spirit, and is the one Person who is God. Examples of such churches today are Oneness Pentecostals and the New Church.”

    “Probably the only absolute in religions as a whole is the notion of a higher spiritual power.”

    I agree. But for me personally, I have no such notion. There is no power greater than me. My Father (Source) and I are one. One and the Same. I came from the Source. I am the Source. We’re equals. He is me and I am he. There’s no hierarchy unless you claim one.

    That said: the notion of Creator and creature being one is usually too hard for many. From my perspective, there is no separation. The creature is not a creation in the strictest sense. That which has been fashioned (created) can be unfashioned. That which is eternal (as man claim he is) cannot know a beginning or an end. Where it to have a beginning, as in a creation, it cannot be said to be eternal. See my discussion on the nature of God.

    I know that the thought may be finessed, but it won’t alter the reality of our existence: God is all there is. We’re all there is. That’s the only absolute we can claim for him or us. Everything else is opened to interpretation.

    In truth, there is no us. There’s Only One. God.


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Deacon Blue is the blogging persona of editor and writer Jeffrey Bouley. The opinions of Jeff himself on this blog, and those expressed as Deacon Blue, in NO WAY should be construed as the opinions of anyone with whom he has worked, currently works, or will work with in the future. They are personal opinions and views, and are sometimes, frankly, expressed in more outrageous terms than I truly feel most days.

Jeff Bouley

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Jeff Bouley

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