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Saturday, December 22, 2012

Male, Female, Giver, Receiver and Money Economy


Lots have been going on and I haven't had time to think about blog posts for a while.  I've had quite a few visitors staying with me, lately.

Ried, Cap, & Spirit

I talked about Ried in my last post.  He came back here from Boulder, Colorado with two more young, wandering moneyless chaps, called Cap and Spirit, and they camped with me for a week or so with their two dogs.  They were grand fun (except for the dogs, I must admit).  They seemed very committed to living without money and plan to continue their moneyless venture on the road.  They went to their respective families for the holidays and then plan to hitch to the international Rainbow Gathering in Palenque, Mexico.  It'll be interesting to see what happens with them.

Lynn

After they left, a 40-something woman named Lynn came from Maryland, and has been camping with me until yesterday, when we started house-sitting.  She is more Bible-oriented than most who come, so we've been discussing Bible more.  That's something I don't get to do often with people.  It's hard to find folks who like to discuss the Bible and are, at the same time, not narrow-minded.  Hard-hearted is the Bible's own word for narrow-minded.

The Guru

Thinking about Ried, Cap, Spirit, and Lynn, I feel deep down that everybody who comes my way is my teacher, my guru, that guru-ship is actually a two-way process.  If it's not, it becomes ego, idolatry.  There is no such thing as one person on earth, ever, being a Guru.  This is the misunderstood enigma of Guru-ship.  The Guru is always between two or more people, and no Guru can exist as a single person, except as a realization that All are One and No Other.   A single person as a Guru is a worthless, meaningless, useless icon, as the figure of Jesus has become.  Jesus himself says, "Where two or more are gathered in my name, there, I Am, in the midst."  Jesus is between two or more people, right here, right now (the same yesterday, today, and forever) but the deluded mind thinks he is a single human who lived 2000 years ago.  No human who ever walked the earth can be worshiped except by the deluded.  But we must bow to everybody in total reverence in the present.  We bow to the Love between us.  Love cannot exist, except between two or more people, and Love is the Only Guru.  There is no other.  And Love is the Name above all names, and it matters not what you call Love.  There is absolutely nothing higher than love.  Love ultimately cannot be spoken, only lived, between two or more folks. 

Bear with me, because I'm continuing the same principle here, and show how it relates to male-female relations, economy, money, and commerce.

Male, Female, Giver, Receiver and Money Economy

While Lynn has been here we've been discussing the idea of the Giver and Receiver, which brings me to the concept of the Feminine Side of God (alluded to in Mark Sundeen's book), and how it relates to the moneyless life, are crystallizing.  It's all coming together!

For anybody who read the The Man Who Quit Money, you might remember the epiphany I had, when I was young, questioning why females are veiled in many cultures, finding the Feminine side of God as I read the passage in the Proverbs in the Bible:

Is your focus on the Snake
 or on the Rock?
There are three things which are too wonderful for me, 
Yes, four which I do not understand: 
The way of an eagle in the air,
The way of a serpent on a rock, 
The way of a ship in the midst of the sea, 
And the way of a man with a maiden. 
(Proverbs 30:18-19)

It dawned on me that we don't get it, because we focus only on the eagle, the serpent, the ship, and the man, and we overlook the air, the rock, the sea, and the maiden!  We don't realize that the power is in the air, the rock, the sea, and the maiden!  We focus on the male, not the female!

Lao Tzu states this principle:

We join spokes together in a wheel,
but it is the center hole
that makes the wagon 

We shape clay into a pot,
but it is the emptiness inside
that holds whatever we want.
We hammer wood for a house,

but it is the inner space
that makes it 

We work with being,
but non-being is what we use.

(Tao Te Ching 11)


Lao Tzu
The spirit of the valley never dies.
It is called the mysterious female.
The gate of the mysterious female
Is called the root of heaven and earth.
(Tao Te Ching 5:6)

The large country is like the lowest river
The converging point of the world
The receptive female of the world
The female always overcomes the male with serenity
Using serenity as the lower position

(Tao Te Ching 61) 


Not shown, therefore apparent,
Not asserted, therefore known,
Not boasted of, therefore of worth,
Not contentious, so enduring. 
It's because the wise do not contend
That no one can contend with them.
When the ancients said:
‘Bowed down and so preserved’
That was no empty saying.
 (Tao Te Ching 22)

Any Jew, Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Sikh, or Buddhist will recognize this as the heart of their own religion.  If they don't, they don't practice their own religion.
 
Yes, I saw the philosophy of the East (feminine) as the heart of West (masculine)!  That which we have devalued and even called evil for thousands of years is the very heart of our own religion!

Now, how on earth does this relate to money and commerce and it's off-shoot, institutional "charity"? 

Who Gets the Credit for Giving?  
Who Gets the Debt for Receiving?

We think of the Male as the Giver (e.g. of semen) and the Female as the Receiver (and conceiver of the seed).  So it appears.  So it appears!  But it dawned on me not too long ago that every True Interaction in nature is absolutely Equal Barter, and it is Unconscious Barter!   For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.  Exactly simultaneously.  Physics 101.  What appears to be one-sided Giving and Receiving in our culture is absolutely not so!  In True Giving, the Giver is the Receiver!  The True Giver is Between the Giver and Receiver!

By obvious appearances, the Giver is Dominant and the Receiver is Recessive.  Recessive is receptive.  We even name the genes in our DNA as dominant and recessive.  The male Y Chromosome is dominant while the female X Chromosome is recessive.  When the Y (male) and the X (female) are together, it is called male, because male is dominant.  When there are two together, XX (female), and there is no male X with it, is it called female, because the female is recessive.  In our genetics, YX is male and XX is female.  In our traditional culture, the male and the female together are called by the male's name.  This isn't just invented culture and religion, but a reflection of our biology.  Male and Female together are called Adam, in our biology.  And for this reason, because we became superficial pricks, we began to think the one who gets the attention, the male, is the superior one.  Little do we realize that the X is the life of the body, while the Y is more of a marker.  The human body absolutely cannot live without the X chromosome, but it can live without the Y.
Giver and Receiver are One

The root of a plant, unseen, under the ground, is the plant's power, and survives through winter and summer.  When the root is exposed, the whole plant dies.  When giving is done in secret, it is powerful.  When seeds are hidden in the ground, they grow into full glory.  When prayer and meditation are done in secret, they are our power.  When we hide our evil deeds, they, like seeds in the ground, grow and overpower us.  When we expose them to the light, confess them, they die.

This is bothersome in a culture that values the dominant and devalues the recessive, that values the male and devalues the female.   A culture that devalues the recessive devalues and destroys nature.  But, as Taoist philosophy shows, it is the recessive feminine that holds the power.   It is the empty space that makes the cup or the house useful.

In our deluded culture, we give credit to the giver and debt to the receiver, not realizing that the receiver is the deeper giver, that both are equally giver and receiver, and that the True Giver is between the "giver" and "receiver" and deserves all credit, all praise, all price.  In our deluded culture, we value the "rich" and devalue the "poor", not realizing that those who do so live in the true poverty, poverty of self.

There is one who makes himself rich, yet has nothing;  
And one who makes himself poor, yet has great riches.
(Proverbs 13:7)

Picking,
without sense of credit and debt



 If I'm sounding too abstract, and you're getting lost, let's look at an example:

Stark Evidence: the Example of Nature 

I'm always bringing up the model of the raspberry bushes in Alaska, where I realized the true nature of nature's economy.  On my trek, I noticed the raspberry bushes near the trails were plumper, redder, and sweeter than those in other parts, meaning the bushes actually wanted creatures to take their berries.  And the berries I camped near and ate from became plumper, redder, and sweeter than other berries.  They literally were telling me, "Eat me!"  So what's really going on between the raspberry ("giver") and me ("receiver")?

This was my epiphany I will repeat again: the berry bush demanded nothing of me for taking its berries and I took with zero sense of debt toward the bush or toward anybody.  How does the bush get what it needs in return?  Is there an accountant sitting by keeping tabulations of who owes what to whom?  All of nature works this way, and it is balanced.  Our accountants obsessively keep tabs, we have PhD economists, and, after all this, what nation on earth can balance its budget?

Any bicycle rider, tight-rope walker, dancer, or marshal artist knows that if you even think about balance, you lose balance.  Balance only happens when you stop trying to balance, when left stops worrying about right, and vise versa.  Don't let your left hand know what your right hand is doing.  Walk, right-left.  Breath, in-out, without control, without possession of air, share the atmosphere freely, else it is not healthy breath.  Thought of credit and debt is knowledge of good and evil, our fall, our separation from the Grace of Nature. 

Pay-It-Forward or Barter Economy... 
Or Both Simultaneously?
Balance Happens,
without our Control

Now I thought of this as a Pay-It-Forward economy, meaning, the bushes "give" to me, and  I "take" from them.  I digested those berries, pooped them out later somewhere else, meaning I later "gave" poop food to micro-organisms in the soil as well as planting new raspberry seeds, propagating new plants!  For the longest time, because I was looking only at the obvious Giver (male) and the obvious Receiver (female), I could not see Giving and Receiving happening simultaneously.  Until recently, I saw nature only as a Pay-It-Forward economy, where the service and the payment for the service are delayed.  In other words, you pay me, then you get paid later, and I pay something to somebody else later.   

But when our eyes are tuned into the feminine recessive, not just the masculine dominant, we see that Giving and Receiving are One.  It's both pay-it-forward and exact, simultaneous, unconscious barter! 

How so?  By taking the raspberry, I am providing a service to the bush right as I take the berry!  And I am receiving a service from the bush right as I take the berry!  If I see a "homeless" man and feel pity and give to him thinking I'm helping him, I am living in delusion.  But if I give to him as an equal, and my giving is sharing, not really giving, then we are both receiving a service absolutely equal, an absolutely equal barter in the same moment: then I am living in Reality, not delusion!  This is why "charity" has gotten a bad name, because it is delusion.  Our "charity" is condescension, not equal sharing.  In true charity (charis, grace, gratis) there is no giver and receiver, really; there is nobody who deserves credit, really, except the Giver Between Us.  All Credit, all Praise, all Price, all Glory to the Giver Between Us, the Unseen Throne between the Two Cherubim!
Balance Only by focusing on the Center.
Stray not to the Right or Left.
When one Covering Cherub takes focus off the Center
and worries about the other Cherub,
he falls from Heaven.
He is Lucifer becoming the Devil:
Father of World Commerce
[See Pre-Christian Judaism's, Roman Catholicism's and Protestantism's 
traditional Biblical passages on the fall of Lucifer (Heylel):
Isaiah 14:12 & Ezekiel 28:13-18]

In sum, the Law of Nature:
the Infinite, Moneyless World

Creating without claiming,
Doing without taking credit,
Guiding without interfering:
This is the Primal Virtue.
(Tao Te Ching 51)



Walk away from the delusion of commerce (Canaan)
and Give credit where credit is due:
All Credit to the All:
Hallelu-Jah 
      

 

189 comments:


  1. Invitation - inglês
    I'm Brazilian.
    Spent reading here, and visit his blog.
    I also have one, only much simpler.
    I'm inviting you to visit me, and if possible follow together for them and with them. I always liked to write, expose and share my ideas with people, regardless of class Social, Religious Creed, the Sexual Orientation, or, of Ethnicity.
    To me, what will interest is our exchange of ideas, and, thoughts.
    I'm there in my space Simpleton, waiting for you.
    And I'm already following your blog.
    Strength, Peace, Friendship and Happiness
    For you, a hug from Brazil.
    www.josemariacosta.com

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  2. Just got your book. Very Interesting I am currently living a Nomadic Lifestyle Off The Grid. When I make it your way Ill be sure to look you up sounds like a great life your leading!

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  3. Thank you for writing. You've presented a wonderful idea that deserves more contemplation.

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  4. Thanks Suelo - very very interesting! I wonder, in the quote from Proverbs above, where you detected the rock, sea, air and woman as the hidden powers - if this is not referring to the 4 hebrew elements of earth, water, air and spirit - which also refers to the 4 fixed signs of the zodiac: Taurus, Scorpio, Aquarius and Leo (the same four animals mentioned in Ezekial and Revelations).

    Just studying the Kabbalah, Astrology and the tarot at the moment - all of which ties in perfectly with what you are expressing. It is synchronistic. Look up Santos Bonnacci on YouTube if you get a chance.

    Best regards

    Brian

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    1. Yes, Brian! Everything in the Bible is so blatantly zodiacal it's funny conventional religion refuses to see it. Thy will be done on Earth at is in Heaven. Jesus of Nazareth: Jesus of Mazarot (Hebrew Zodiac) surrounded by the 12.

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    2. Jesus and the 12 disciples a.k.a. the sun and the 12 houses of the zodiac.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6rPrOEAZov4

      Wow. Suelo, I love this posting of yours. You did a great job. I'm looking forward to reading your book soon.

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  5. Brilliant Daniel! I didn't realise that you were fully aware of this as I hadn't noticed it in your previous writings. "As above, so below" etc.

    I think that one of the best examples of this zodiacal connection is Jesus instruction to his disciples in Mark 14, 12:16 to "Go into the city, and a man carrying a jar of water will meet you; follow him..etc" It always rang alarm bells for me but I was not sure why until it was pointed out that it was referring to the sign of Aquarius (the water carrier). In those days it not have been normal for a man to be carrying the water - it would have been woman's work! So I think this passage is a clear signal that what is going on is zodiacal in nature. And you can follow on from this to pick out all of the other signs in this gospel (see Bill Darlison's The Gospel and the Zodiac, a masterpiece on this subject). I can send you a copy if you atre interested.

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  6. Hard hearted is not the Bible’s own word for narrow minded. It is the Bible’s word for “hard against the truth” in the Old Testament and “stubborn against the truth” in the New. The truth is not broad and all encompassing. It is narrow. The Bible talks about this, about how narrow the way is and that few find it, and how broad is the way that leads to destruction and that many go in that way. Jesus Himself talked about how HE was the Way, the Truth and the Life. The Bible says there is ONE Mediator between God and Man, the Man Christ Jesus. There is ONE Gospel and many false Gospels, One Christ and many false Christs.

    Try applying whatever equation you THINK is right to a mathematical problem. It won't work. Give whatever answer looks good (and you like the ring of the number's name). It will most probably be the wrong answer, because there is only ONE answer, ONE rule, ONE standard.

    The kind of works a person must do and how many, is the BROAD way. Every cult and religion has its followers doing something to earn their way to God, to Nirvana, to Heaven, to obtaining ten virgins, etc, etc. Christianity is the only Faith whose God has paid the way for them, if they will only receive Him. It is the only religion that transforms the hearts its followers by God Himself. It is the only religion where God comes to reside in the human body, calling it His Temple and empowering the person to good works. It is the only religion where the position in God is secure and the practice is exhorted to be worthy of the position. Every other religion has a form of godliness but denies the power of it.

    Each religion might have different outward behaviors, what is required to fulfill the principles and rules of the religion (such as sell all that you have and live moneyless), but inwardly they are all the same and accept the same basic principles—do a few good things, even some extraordinary things, and you’ve earned yourself a place where you can live like you please and do anything you want---anything goes. As long as you do what you think is right in your own eyes, you’re safe. This makes them white washed sepulchers. They look good on the outside but nothing has changed on the inside. They are full of dead men’s bones.

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  7. "By their fruit you shall know them." Truth is self-evident. It's being and its works bear witness to itself. It needs not defend itself. When we erase the words, the truth and the attrocities of 'Christendom' is starkly evident, as Jesus pointed out in his own religion. God is truth, and truth is wide, wide, wide. Christ is all and in all. There's no where where Truth is not, except in narrow minds. Narrow mindedness crucified Christ. Yes, so few, so very very few, see Truth, despite it being everywhere. It is paradoxically narrow, even though it's right in front of us. When I put away talk and look at reality, I see more faith outside of 'Christendom', more fruit, more openness to Jesus' teachings and work, than within it. Publicans and sinners are closer to the Kingdom. Love simply cannot exist in narrow-mindedness, and without love we are absolutely nothing.

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  8. The prophets of old were killed for telling the truth. It was too narrow and judgmental for fair weather listeners. The targets of their prophesies did not feel loved. But love that only talks about fair weather and happiness is out of balance. Lack of balance kills, steals and destroys.

    Besides, in this natural world, where the only god is our "real" selves--our great self I am and no other--what is sin? and what is a Publican? And what is our "real" self? Does any one have complete understanding of their inner self? Or is it that the more deeply you get involved in "sin" or "taboos" the closer you are to being your REAL self? The fruits of the Spirit which are love, joy, peace, longsuffering,gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance, all qualities hard to come by, are therefore phony? If not, how come are they hard to come by?

    You seem to deny the physical Christ that lived 2,000 years ago. Belief in that Christ is narrow-minded, so I gather from what you say. Instead of that stilted belief, we ourselves are little Christs, according to you. Am I correct in my understanding? Does that mean that the faith we are to have in Christ is an admonishment to have faith in ourselves? How does that work?







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    1. By the way, every nation has fallen just as foretold, but one, whom it was prophesied that they would be scattered and then come back into their land. That is the nation of Israel. They've been in existence for 4,000 to 5,000 years. I'd say the prophetic dooms-dayers were correct--the ones that were killed for what they said.

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    2. Jesus called his body the temple 2000 years ago. Temples come and go, die and resurrect. But Christ, who dwelled in that temple, is unchanging, "the same yesterday, today, and forever." A physical body is changing. Your own Bible bears me witness. Jesus himself said that "that which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is Spirit." And he said, "among those born of women, none is greater than John the Baptist". John the Baptist greater than Jesus, if you believe Christ is born of the flesh. Christ dwells in flesh but is born from Above, not below. You must be born from above. There is only One Begotten Son, born from above. You must be born from above, Perfect, Image of God. Christ is ever born Today. "You are my Son, Today I have begotten you." Christendom worships the flesh and denies the eternal Spirit, and would readily crucify Jesus' body again today. Christendom worships the flesh, saying "Lord, Lord" and denies the teachings of Jesus, bowing to worthless icons. Yes, Jesus preached a gospel that few follow, most especially the "church". The "church" prefers the wide way that leads to destruction, the way of nationalism and schmoozing up to world commerce and political systems, and kills and imprisons and persecutes anybody who challenges it, and will not stand up for social justice, as all of the Jewish prophets did, because it is afraid of being labeled "leftist," afraid of the least bit of persecution.

      The True Israel, also, is born from above, and does not depend on deception, violence, and commerce to exist, as all the Jewish prophets pointed out. What we call Israel today is another nation of this world, Canaan, Land of Commerce. This is bothersome to the mind that is of this world system and loves the things of this world system.

      And does not 1 John state "You have the annointing and you know all things." Messiah means annointed one. Christian means Annointed One. "we ourselves are little Christs" according to whom? "That they may be One as We," quoth Jesus in the gospel of John.

      But, all scripture aside, the corrupt works alone of "Christendom" are witness enough against it.

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    3. As far as the verse you quoted, "among those born of women, none is greater than John the Baptist," Luke 7: 28 qualifies that:

      "For I say unto you, Among those that are born of women there is not A GREATER PROPHET than John the Baptist"

      Jesus asked His disciples "Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?"

      They replied, "Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets."

      Then Jesus said to them, "But whom say ye that I am?"

      "And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God."

      "And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven." (Matthew 16:13-17)


      Jesus was not a prophet. He was Christ, the Son of the Living God. Therefore, even though He was born of a woman, He was also the Eternal Spirit, God among us, not a prophet but God Himself.

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    4. Acts 3:22 calls Jesus a prophet, as he referred to himself as a prophet (Matt 13:57, Mark 6:4, Luke 4:24, 13:33).

      Matthew 11:11 states that there was nobody born of woman greater than John the Baptist.




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    5. And yet, when you read to the end of the verse, Matthew 11:11, you will find this:

      "notwithstanding he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he (John the Baptist)."

      This is repeated in Luke 7:28, "but he that is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he (John the Baptist)."

      Hmmm, we must be talking something different than SUBSTANCE, don't you think?

      That's right. Jesus Christ made Himself of NO REPUTATION and even though it was not robbery for Him to be EQUAL with God, "took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:

      "And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross." Phil 2: 7,8.

      Christ prophesied, but He was MORE than a prophet. He is God's only begotten Son. "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."




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    6. Yes, WOTM, you noticed the exact point I'm making! Even the least of that which is Born of the Spirit is greater than that which is born of flesh. That which is born of the flesh is not God, and cannot be worshiped. There are 2 Adams, one flesh, one Spirit: one old man, one New Man. "He who knew no sin (Adam) became sin, became not-God. One the image of earth, the other the Image of God. "Adam, the Son of God." (Luke 3:38). How can there be the Only Begotten Son if we are called the Sons of God, born of God? "That they may be One as We." Now we see in a mirror dimly, but then Face to Face. What does a person see in the mirror? Those who worship a single human think Jesus came and went, and is now lost in heaven. And their fruit bears witness: If worshiping a single human 2000 years ago has made anybody a better person, if it has made anybody keep his teachings, then go ahead and worship a single human. "Why do you call me good? There is None good, but God," says Jesus to the one who could only see a man. Worship an idol, a stumblingblock, and stumble in the dark where there is no love, no light. Those who worship the Spirit see that Jesus is everywhere, "all and in all." He is hungry, and they feed him. He is in prison, and they visit him. She is in front of your face, in the flesh, because she is your Neighbor. "Christ is all and in all" means just that. "There is nothing else but God," to quote Isaiah. All else is illusion. How is it that your Bible says Israel is the Son of God, Ephraim is the First-Born Son of God, that we are the Sons of God, that Solomon is the Son of God? How is it that Jesus and the Psalms say, "Ye are Elohim?" How is it that there is only One Seed of Abraham, and we are called the Seed of Abraham? The Only Begotten Son. There is only one Image of God, and that is God. If you are yourself, completely true, you are the Image of God. There is and can never be anything or anyone like God, except God, according to the Torah, Isaiah, and the Quran. If a person says, in truth, "I am who I am," will you pick up stone to stone him?

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  9. Aloha from Maui, Daniel. I just finished reading T.M.W.Q.M. two days ago. It was an unusually reflective, affirming experience for me, as a seven-year portion of my journey on earth was also spent without spending.
    I am very impressed with your sincerity/insight, of course; and also very impressed by the perfect sincerity and insightful thoughtfulness of Mark Sundeen.
    Of course, each of our human earth journeys are unique. And each of our perspectives adds to the combined experience of all. None of us is as wise as all of us. It was after my first experience with LSD during an extended peace walk at age 25 in 1986 that my own 1960's began.
    I came out of that LSD trip astounded by my newfound awareness that "They (parents, teachers, etc.) didn't tell me who I really am!" For the first time I realized that I had been raised, schooled, trained, and conditioned to carve an identity for myself based on my capacity to make money... and it had just been revealed to me that this was a delusion, a deceit, a denigration against my truer, greater nature.
    So I was impelled to burn my identity cards and papers, and to cease using money, and to begin hitchhiking around the United States looking for my true identity, as well as looking for a community where the residents didn't use money...
    During that journey I also read a few books, such as the Aquarian Gospel of Jesus the Christ, The Name of the Rose, Siddhartha, Peace Pilgrim, etc., I, too, became convinced that a number of great spiritual teachers did not use money, and that they likely had very aware, insightful reasons for not doing so.
    I have read probably five different lives of Jesus, and am hugely impressed by the added perspective each book offers to the life of Jesus, beyond the paltry version offered in the New Testament. Let's see, some titles... The Nine Faces of Christ by R. Wentworth; The True Life of Jesus of Nazareth by Alexander Smyth; The Aquarian Gospel of Jesus the Christ by Levi; The Passover Plot by ?; The Urantia Book, Pt. IV; The Hidden Teachings of Jesus... each of these provided fresh perspective.
    A huge piece of B.S. (Belief System, Belief Structure) is perpetuated in references to a 'Judeo-Christian' tradition. Jesus potently repudiates the Jewish traditional system of worship of a false god---a vengeful, wrathful, punishing god named Jehovah---and offers awareness of a more infinite and infinitely loving universal consciousness in its stead.
    Though Jesus said, "I bring you a new covenant," the Judaic, mammon-worshiping tradition is still carried on to this day by many bamboozled wanna-be "Christians." As expressed by Mark Twain, "If Jesus were here today, there is one thing he would not be---a 'Christian.' Also, "The last Christian died on the cross."
    I should stop, eh? But, of course, there's much more... Aloha, Jeffrey

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  10. Incredulous that someone ^^^ would base their whole life on an LSD experience and then so confidently call Christians ("wanna-be" and) "bamboozled." Just SMH.

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  11. Daniel, I read some of that book recently .. Anyway, I am influenced a great deal by Jewish Kabbalah and Parmahansa Yogananda as well as the bible and some Buddhist meditations. I am definitely Christian and have always been. I would say Kabbalah can help resolve difficult theological questions more than anything, however it seems that as Yogaganda has said that the highest aspect of the spirit is intuition and not intellect ..

    I have the bible on my IPod. If I am frustrated or having a hard time, I sometimes to I like to listen to the psalms. I find that praying from the heart or being aware of the emotions to be useful in meditation. I was very influenced by the sutra on the four establishments of mindfulness which is an ancient Buddhist scripture that Thich Nhat Han did a commentary on as well as some stuff by the Dalai Lama such as 'overcoming anger' which is a commentary on the ancient "bodhisatvas way of life". I am the most influenced by Yogananda however, are you familiar with the book "Autobiography of a Yogi" ? I also like the book "My life with the Himalayan masters" by Swami Rama, though his attitude to me is different than Yogananda.


    I recently bought some land in Maine and want to try to grow groundnuts, jerusalem artichokes, mushrooms, various berries and fruits and have some bees. I am learning about permaculture. Groundnuts are highly nutritious and where a major art of the first thanksgiving though that seems lost from history.

    I have gotten very familiar with various conspiracy theories since sometime after 9/11 as well as the book on the federal reserve called: "the creature from jekyl island".

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  12. = is balance between the equations, one and one the same =,
    once we realize its all the same all =, = a great name for a boat to remind of this truth

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  13. Hey Suelo, just found your blog and feeling a really good connection here.

    I see the comments have attracted a bit of religious speculation from your readers so I thought I might also give my 2 cents worth.

    According to the Bible no man has ever "seen" God... his thoughts are infinitely higher than ours. And doesn't that make so much sense?

    I mean we live in this infinite, ever expanding awesome universe, most of which we can not even begin to comprehend. How ridiculous to think we know it all just because we are Christian, Hindu, Budhist, or any other belief system.

    We know nothing. Absolutely nothing. All of us, even me. If we could 'get' even 1% of what God is all about that would be amazing. Our limited little minds are an infinitismally tiny part of an infinite universe. How dare anyone think they have all the answers based on their little belief system with all its obvious limitations?You have got to be kidding me.

    Sure, belief systems have their uses and can be valuable, I'm not knocking any of them. (I have used one to carry me through large chunks of my life) But ultimate truth? No frigging way dude.

    We need to work with what we have... an unfathomable, mysterious, magical, wonderfully unending universe. I mean what a trip! What a trip! There is so much to learn, discover, experience. The best we can do is focus on this awesome journey of a lifetime and relish it.

    But to even try labelling, filing and packaging God into a neat little user-friendly box is so sad.It is futile and digustingly egotisticle, and will exhaust us spiritually. Just accept that he is way bigger than us and don't resist the obvious.

    Life is for living. Live it good man.

    Peace out and love from Dave G.

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    1. "his thoughts are infinitely higher than ours".
      Is this an "ultimate truth"? How do you know this? Did you get it from a "belief system"?

      What makes a thought "higher"?

      What do you mean by "infinite"?

      William

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  14. Good comments, Dave G.

    What we know is nothing compared to what we can get to know. Genius is to tap into 'that' even when no one recognises 'it' is present or till Consciousness.

    There is this Zen story about a master and his disciples. A flag is moving in the wind and so the first chela says the flag is moving. The second one corrects him saying it is not the flag but the wind is moving the flag. The guru comes along and says it is neither the flag nor the wind is moving, only Consciousness that moves. Our ability to understand the infinite is limited by our awareness. The more our Consciousness expands, the more our ability to understand 'that'.

    As always, Peace.

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  15. You keep mentioning the bible is an important book and you like to discuss that book all the time. Seems to me your the one who are into guru thing and what makes mater worst is that you think people aren't open minded if they do not like to talk about the bible. boy your a mess lmao

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    1. It's good to read something before commenting on it, no? Have I said or even implied anywhere that I don't think people are open minded if they don't like to talk about the Bible? Don't I in fact say the opposite? "It's hard to find folks who like to discuss the Bible and are, at the same time, not narrow-minded."

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  16. Daniel, I have a question for you. I have been bothered for quite some time over what I truly believe to be a complete misrepresentation and portrayal of the Bible. I think that a lot of the words in CONTEMPORARY versions are skewed and misinterpreted beyond compare. As well, I feel so much has been omitted since it's inception, that I have to ask two questions. One: What is the oldest version you have read from from or prefer and Two: Do you believe that what is available for most people nowadays is providing solid information to truly learn from? I know that original or at least so called original versions are from Greek and Hebrew. How do you feel about the Tanakh and Torah as their place in the lineage? I know that's three questions. Appreciate your insight. I've felt for a long time that God's word has been used for evil and for wrong intent. I'd like to hear your input. Laura

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    1. Laura -
      anything written down is a treasure laid up on earth, and is subject to decay, which shows the True Word cannot be written down. The True Word cannot ever pass away, and that is the Word written on your heart and is forever written in all of Nature. If this Word, which is Living and Breathing, is not your First Source, then any written scripture will make no sense to you, no matter how "accurate" or "original." The written letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. Written texts are written not to teach anything, but to confirm what you already know, "that your joy may be full." Because "you know all things".

      Yes, I could go into detail about Hebrew, Aramaic, & Greek texts (or Sanskrit, Pali, or Arabic, for folks of other religions) but those who twist it will always twist it, no matter how "original" or "accurate".

      For example, Jesus' recorded statements on money and possessions couldn't be more blatantly clear as they are written in all translations, but greed-heads, who have hijacked Christianity, still choose to ignore, distort, or explain them away.

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  17. Hi Daniel,

    In response to your debate above, I do believe that love can exist in narrowmindedness.

    I attend a strict Freewill Baptist Church with a narrow and literal interpretation of Scripture, and I can attest that the congregation is very loving. They are extremely kind to me, and to my husband as well even though he isn't "saved." They give back to their community constantly, in varied ways, in public and in private, and I have been the (surprised and grateful) recipient of charity both great and small, even though I don't generally feel that I need charity.

    I believe that God created both liberal and conservative people--people open to change and people closed to change--for a reason. Liberal-minded people help us adapt to changing circumstances. Conservative people prevent us from changing too quickly and breaking down as a society.

    If you ever have the opportunity, I encourage you to seek out a loving and conservative congregation and see what it's like. Keep in mind that congregations are like people--some are unpleasant and some are wonderful--so try a few out. Also keep in mind that they are not likely to "accept you as you are." I don't present a full picture of myself to my church (I drink alcohol, which is discouraged in my church). I try to do this out of love - I believe in the New Testament admonitions not to stir up strife about disagreements.

    I suspect that you're more likely to find a good conservative congregation in a small church in an old-fashioned kind of town, simply because those places don't change as fast and are slightly more immune to the draw of the world.

    The little churches in our neighborhood are shrinking steadily. Yesterday at church I realized that I was taking part in a dying and dwindling part of our culture, and this made me sad. Traditional Christians have a lot to offer to America... even if America doesn't realize it.

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    1. I actually very much agree with you, and have witnessed what you speak of over an over, starting with my own upbringing and with present people around me. I'd be an ungrateful fool to discount the treasures I grew up with.

      But I will say that love itself is open-mindedness ("love believes all things"), and it shines through in spite of narrow-mindedness, not because of it. And this is my hope for Chrisitanity, that it can be worked with, not thrown out. Love becomes stronger through the narrowness it must contend with, like plants through cracks in concrete. A very narrow-minded environment gave rise to Jesus, in fact. Narrow-mindedness has its function as a proving ground, a purifier. And love must challenge narrow-mindedness as narrow-mindedness must prove love in this perpetual drama. Right now, the church direly needs challenged with its own teachings, from within. Either we throw it all out or we schmooze to it, few willing to challenge it. Right now it needs a whip to drive out its narrow-minded materialism and its lack of courage to stand up for justice, stand up for the poor. And it direly needs to open up in respect for other beiefs, to listen to others. Listening is the very heart of the Golden rule, the Rule by which all should be measured and proven. Status-quo niceness isn't enough.

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    2. Anonymous above is right. Fundamental Evangelical Christianity that takes the Bible literally is shrinking steadily. It is NOT the status quo. Liberal, mega-church Christianity is the status quo and has become mainstream Christianity. It is a new phenomenon.

      However, statistics show that regular church-goers are the largest charity givers by far. A lot of people and groups talk about charity, but the most religious put their moneys and goods where their mouth is and actually give.

      It is Christianity that has gone into depressed countries with food, shelter, provision and education. Christians have been the ones to re-build atheist Communist countries, in spite of previous persecution by its despots.

      Christianity has taken the lead in these areas. Then, often, other groups follow suit. Even in the United States, the educational system was founded by Christianity, including the universities. The same for the hospitals. Their Christian names reveal this fact, even if you don't know their history.

      World-wide, Christianity consists of about 30% of the population. Of course the Christian population is concentrated most heavily in the United States, but the literalists of them are a minority. If you were raised in the United States in a Fundamental Evangelical Christian home, you are indeed a privileged bloke and do not know your treasures.


      The context of "love believes all things" is not gullibility. It is giving the other person the benefit of the doubt, believing the best in another person, until the facts prove otherwise. That is (supposed to be) one of the founding principles of our legal system. A person is innocent until proven guilty. Your interpretation contradicts another verse that says in Pr 14:15, The simple believes every word: but the prudent man looks well to his going.



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    3. I agree with you, WOTM, except your assuming my "interpretation" of "love believes all things". We must not lose sight of the good in Christianity, those within it truly following the Golden Rule. But we also must not bury our heads in the sand and ignore the horrors done by traditional Christianity (whether Eastern, Western, fundamentalist or whatever sectarianism) stemming from narrow-mindedness, believing itself right and all others wrong, unwilling to listen, straying from its own Golden Rule. I hope we begin to recognize that God is omnipresent, that that's not just an idea, that Truth is not limited to our own little packages, our own little idols of scripture and dogma and tradition. What if we were as quick to recognize and praise the good in other cultures and religious traditions as we are to praise our own? What if we were as quick to clear out the lumber yard in our own eye as we are to pick out splinters in others' eyes?

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  18. What if we were as quick to point out the wrongs done by other religions, atheists and cultures as we are to point them out in Christianity? Doesn't love include justice and justice should be blind and nonpreferential? In other words it should not hold a standard over one person/group that is not demanded of EVERY group/person? The killing fields are soaked in blood and what "Christians" shed is a drop in them. That doesn't justify what they did, but it certainly is strange that of all the blood shed, none of it is brought into condemnation but Christianity. What insidious philosophies undergirded the rest of these atrocities??

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  19. The point is, we are not pointing out our own faults, only the faults of others and ignoring our own. When others point out our faults, and if we are Christian, we don't get on the defensive, we admit they are right. If we are not really Christian, we get defensive and go back to hiding in the darkness we love. The point is we must confess first our own faults, not the faults of others. Our faults only increase when we ignore them. Christianity 101. Self-righteousness has no place in Christianity. Confession does. When we do this first, then we have the right to point out others' faults. And if we are living our principles, we need say nothing about the good we do. Our good will be completely self-evident. This is why the prophets were persecuted and killed, because they FIRST pointed out the faults of their own religion, and they were not nice about it, and they were condemned for being anti-religion. Lastly, why should we expect non-Christians to keep Christian principles and condemn them for not keeping them? But Christians should certainly expect Christians to keep Christian principles.

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    1. The thing is, Christians, nonChristians, atheists, secularists, all condemn Christianity. So, I don't know where you are getting that Christianity is pointing out the faults of others and not their own. EVERYONE is pointing out the faults of Christianity, but when Christianity points out wrong in someone else, they are condemned (yet again). Why the double standard? I ask again.

      Look at you, for instance. You are not a Christian, but you have felt free to point out anothers faults, the faults of Christianity. By your own standard, this implies that you think you have arrived at righteousness and therefore have earned the right to find fault with Christians.

      How long must a Christian grovel and beg for forgiveness, make confessions and do penance before he has earned his place among the other fault finders? I wager to say that no amount of confession, repentance or good works will earn him that place.

      Might I go a step further to say that the only thing that would earn him a place of acceptance among the sea of critics would be for him to recant his faith? Once he does that, he can do as he pleases, condemn and denounce, and he will be a jolly good fellow.

      By the way, John the Baptist, who you pointed out was the greatest of all prophets, was killed for pointing out Herod's immorality.




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    2. By the way, John the Baptist was not pointing out his own religion's faults when he condemned the immorality of Herod the Gentile .

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    3. Weren't John the B's first words recorded against the hypocrisy of his own religion? Herod practiced Judaism and was the one who built the Jewish Temple Jesus preached in. Tell me, how many times did Jesus denounce another religion or the non-religious, when Judaism was in a melting pot of religions and atheists and people who persecuted Jews? Now compare that to how many times Jesus denounced his own religion's hypocrisy. Does this mean Jesus, John, and nearly all the Jewish prophets were not Jewish or anti-Jewish, because spoke up against their own religion's hypocrisy?

      Is this why you say I am not Christian?

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    4. No, John the Baptist did not denounce his own religion. He denounced the hypocrites within it, those who did all these outward things, but on the inside were unjust, lustful, covetous, irreverent and power hungry, revealing their unbelief in the things they espoused. Therefore, they would once again kill the prophets that came to warn them, because had they believed the prophets of the past they would believe the One who came in fulfillment of all that the law and the prophets had said.

      Herod, even though a Gentile, attempted to incorporate Judaism, but it was because he was trying to amalgamate all the religions of the day to satisfy everyone. Maybe amalgamate is the wrong word. But anyway, he was trying to please everyone in his kingdom.

      Jesus said to the Pharisees, you try to clean the outside of the cup but inwardly you are full of ravening and wickedness. You tithe of mint and rue and all manner of herbs, but you've left undone the inward filth. You should have cleaned the inside of the cup and kept up the outward things too! In saying this, Jesus was not disparaging the religion but those people WITHIN the religion! They were thinking that keeping outward rituals and demands was enough to make up for the inner filth. Their outward acts did not make up for nor clean up their inner lives of wickedness.

      No. I say you are not a Christian because you are Buddhist, Islam, Taoism, atheism, and whatever other religion you have incorporated into your life. Therefore, like Herod, you are an amalgamation. Christianity is exclusive, as is made clear in the Bible of Christianity.

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  20. If calling Jesus Christ "the Son of God" is on the same par as all the times humans are called the "sons of God," then why is Christ called the ONLY BEGOTTEN Son of God?

    It is because He is God come in the flesh--"Emmanuel, which being interpreted is God with us." "A body Thou hast prepared for me," says Jesus Christ in the prophetic past before He has visited the Earth.

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    1. Yes!! This is exactly my point, how can there be many sons of God if there is only one begotten Son of God? I'm glad you say "He is God come in the flesh--'Emmanuel, which being interpreted is God with us." Yes!! Your neighbor! Your self! God! To love one is to love the other, because there is and can be no difference! You can't love God in heaven if you can't love God in the flesh, right in front of your face! This is the Only Way. How can there be an argument with love? How???????????????????

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    2. Funny, you didn't answer the question, What is love? The non-answer was, You will know it when you see it. Will we? Have we?? It is naive to not realize that many people have been fooled by what they thought was love. Didn't you know in your study of the Bible that wolves come in sheep's clothing? The very reason for doing that is because it fools people.

      People thought Hitler was loving because of all the perks he handed out to needy people. Was he love? The child is fooled into thinking the child molester is love because of his friendliness and giving.

      Without a standard by which to measure fruit, many people have been poisoned by what they thought was good fruit. Some poisons are cumulative or have subtle but continuing side effects. Therefore they don't kill or cause problems immediately. Those are tricky fruits because people tend to impute guilt by association to the nearest thing, rather than the actual offending fruit. They don't understand consequential long distance relationships, without a standard of reference. That is the key--a standard of reference.


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    3. Nothing to argue. No amount of words will change a leopard's spots.
      We either get it or we don't.

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    4. And of course, the implication is, YOU are the one that gets it. Right? If anyone contradicts what YOU say, it has become an argument, even if you will not change your mind any more than your "opponent"? It sure seems to me a rather high-minded position to take, especially after accusing your "opponent" of having taken this position!

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  21. Aren't we all human beings first before the trappings of a religion or denomination came into play. Jesus Ben Yosef was born a Jew and His existence was to bear a witness to 'Truth'. Even when Pontius asks Jesus the Christ, 'what is Truth', Jesus doesn't give a detailed explanation but says, ' you shall know it and it shall set you free.' In that way Jesus called us brothers and we are also called to emulate Him, in consciousness, in awareness. If Christendom is waiting for Jesus to come back and snatch us off the Earth so that we don't have to face any problems we face, then humanity is frighteningly lost.

    I am from India and I am raised a Christian simply because my parents were Christians. I, first hand know how great the work of missionaries were here. They started schools, nursing, went into places where none dared to go. Built hospitals, roads, infact played a major role in the overall education system of this country. But then the secondary agenda was to spread Christianity or spread the message of Christ. A lot of people embraced Christianity, a lot of bloodshed, Hindus with their brand of firebrand fundamentalism to counter the Christian conversion, etc. I am not saying there is anything right or wrong about it but this was how it was.

    As somebody rightly pointed out, "The Christian of the future will either be a mystic or not exist at all."

    I cater to Suelos views.

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    1. No, the FIRST agenda was to spread the Good News of Salvation to the lost. It was secondary to care for them physically. That's because if a person gained his health, a house, an education, even THE WHOLE WORLD, but lost his own soul, what would it profit him?

      There are so many that are dying in hopelessness in India. There is no way to save them all physically. They know this and so while laying in a gutter dying of incurable diseases or wounds, they receive the Gospel of Jesus Christ joyfully and gratefully. All hope of life here on earth is gone, but they now have confident expectation of the life to come. Silver and gold have I none, but such as I have give I thee!

      Others have been given another chance of physical survival and even education. They also receive the Gospel of Jesus Christ with joy and then spend their lives giving everything they have, even to the sacrifice of their own lives that were given back to them, to spread the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to their own people. You should see their joyful countenances! It is deeply moving.

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    2. ' We either get it or we don't.'- If you get 'it' consider yourself the rarest treasure walking on planet Earth right here, right now.

      Maybe each at their on time..

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    3. I have to be careful because when I think I get it, I don't. When I think I get it I get drawn into argument, as above, which is futility. When I be still, beyond thought... ah, I'm gone and there's only Truth and it's not me who gets anything!
      So time to stop arguing, like the sun and deer and ants and infants, who proclaim Truth perfectly!

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    4. And the sun is where it is because of resistance as well as attraction, and the deer fight against the resistance of the elements, of each other, and against death itself. The ants fight any intruders, even of their own kind. Infants fight resistance to stay in the womb with the need to be liberated from the womb. They fight death to search for sustenance. Life doesn't just float along. It is a constant battle!

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    5. Suelo,

      If you are saying argument is futile, it is not necessarily futile - e.g. a third party reading the discussion may benefit.

      Can we argue without getting "drawn in"?

      Watcher on the Mountain,

      Life does just float along - all the things you describe are completely natural.

      William

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    6. If both parties are open to listening, it is a discussion or a good debate. Debate is good, because its goal is truth, even if it knows it might be wrong. Argument is futile, because its goal is to be right and its mind is set before it even starts. When the mind is closed from the beginning to what another says and believes, it is an argument. Argument cannot come from a good spirit. Narrow-mindedness is against the Golden Rule. A bad tree can't bring forth good fruit. Argument can even be poison to a 3rd party.

      If I can't consider what somebody else says or believes could be right, whatever religion or culture they come from, just I expect them to consider what I say as right, I am breaking the Golden Rule, the rule above all rules. Listening is the beginning of love. We must love our enemies, whom we disagree with, as we love those we agree with.

      I will say to WOTM, this blog might be too distracting, because it may just be flirting with other gods. Don't take my word for it. Find out if it is. I say forget this blog and do follow Jesus as the only way, the only truth, and the only life, which means you *will* practice his teachings as your number one goal, away from all distractions. I wager to say, if you do this, you won't be able to help but see that Jesus is the heart and essence of every religion, that what you see as many gods are One. "Hear, Oh Israel, Yahweh your Elohim (Gods) is One." But don't take my word for it. I might be a sham. Forget about me and practice Jesus' teachings with all your heart, and then see if I'm a deceiver or not.

      Something else to consider: If those who are calling Jesus "Lord, Lord" the loudest actually practice Jesus' teachings, then stick with them.

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    7. I will support those who are calling Jesus Christ "Lord, Lord" ONLY if their teachings also line up with Biblical teaching, which was delivered to us by God, and their lives do not contradict their words. If someone embraces that path I support them. If they stray from that path, I oppose them, even as I, myself, have been opposed.

      You can bet on it that as soon as you put your trust in another human and begin to follow them, you will get yourself into trouble. "Let God be true and every man a liar."



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    8. Now about Jesus' teachings. The whole Bible is Jesus' teachings. I will show you!

      He, Jesus, is the One that taught the disciples about how He was in all of the Old Testament Scriptures, starting with Moses and all of the prophets.

      Luke 24: 27 And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he (Jesus) expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning HIMSELF.

      Christ also quoted from the Old Testament Scriptures often throughout his earthly ministry.

      The truth did not stop there or end with the life of Jesus on earth. He foretold of the Holy Spirit that would be given to the disciples. The Holy Spirit would bring all things to their remembrance that Jesus had taught them and He would testify of Christ.

      Joh 15:26 But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:

      Joh 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

      Then Christ commissioned the disciples as Apostles to take over where He left off,
      John 20: 21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.

      22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:

      23 Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

      If you are truly following the teachings of Jesus Christ, you would also obey the Epistles written by the Apostles, because all of the disciples, except for Judas, were commissioned by Jesus Christ. Christ sent them out with dire consequences to anyone who did NOT listen to them!

      "Go your ways: behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves…

      "....But into whatsoever city ye enter, and they receive you not, go your ways out into the streets of the same, and say,

      "Even the very dust of your city, which cleaveth on us, we do wipe off against you: notwithstanding be ye sure of this, that the kingdom of God is come nigh unto you.

      "But I say unto you, that it shall be more tolerable in that day for Sodom, than for that city." Luke 10:3, 10-12.

      We are further warned about not heeding the Scriptures as breathed out by God through the prophets and apostles.

      “Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip.

      “For if the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompence of reward;

      “How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him;

      “God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will?” Hebrews 2: 1-4


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    9. William, if all things are natural, which you seem to be equating with "floating along," then arguing is natural too. If it is not, then is it sub-natural? supernatural?

      Suelo, if all religions have a common core, then does atheism too? It seems it does. However, why does any of this matter? It's ALL natural. If we're just floating along (which William above thinks anyway and you seem to agree with), all our actions are predetermined by our genetics. If not, some of them, then, are supernatural?

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    10. Anon: The core principle of the world's religions is, you have to give up all that you think is God, or truth - go beyond mind. If I reject all ideas that people think are God, conventional religious people will call me an atheist, just as people think Buddha was atheist, because he refused to bow to any image, even images in the mind. Crucify the images we think are God - our own thoughts. Ultimately, we end up arguing vocabulary, not Reality, and I would call Reality God. Reality cares not what you call it.

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    11. Anonymous,

      Watcher on the Mountain said, "Life doesn't just float along. It is a constant battle." My statement about "floating along" was intended to see if Watcher on the Mountain could entertain other perspectives - e.g. "life is not a constant battle".

      (By the way, I only used the phrase "float along" because Watcher on the Mountain used it. I don't care for it in this context and probably wouldn't use it myself.)

      By natural I meant to occur in nature. With this definition, there is no "sub-natural" or "supernatural", if these mean outside of nature. I usually use the word Reality.

      What do you mean by, "predetermined"?

      William

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    12. It seems that you are implying that either, 1. No one can know or understand God, because He is unknowable, so give it up and just live in the now, or 2. Reality or what we can, sooner or later see, is God, including ourselves, because He IS all of reality. This would justify worshiping nature, what is in the Cosmos and each other, or, as the Bible says in Ro 1:25, Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

      Am I correct?

      What I am noticing is that you are using other men, gurus of the past to explain the Bible, rather than letting the Bible speak for itself. This is done in place of explaining the others by the Bible, relegating it to the place of human origin! The result is that the message of the Bible is lost and the words of the others take over, making Christianity of no effect but turning it into Buddhism, Taoism, etc., which were doing just fine as human literature, all on their own.

      By the way, the atheists are the ones that enlightened us Christians to the fact that Buddhism is atheistic. They, therefore, feel free to embrace it even though they reject every other religion.



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  22. Just wanted to say "Hi". I love tuning in to Suelo's journey from time to time. Suelo, I love you like a brother, and you Inspire me deeply.

    I would also like to humbly offer my own blog (listed below) as food for thought.

    Lovingfriendliness,
    Brotha G
    http://brothergeronimo.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks, BG! Very good that we're still in contact over all these years, my brother!
      Lovingfriendliness rebounded
      S

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  23. Hi, just wanted to say that I finished Mark Sundeen's book, The Man Who Quit Money.

    Mark did a great job!

    Good read, even for those of us who have been following Daniel's journey for a while.

    Jim

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  24. I like how you are living your life without money...takes a great deal of courage in my opinion, the type that most people dont have. Why do you go off on so many wierd religious tangents though? I enjoyed your book up until the point that the author was trying to make you out as some sort of modern day Messiah or some sort of 21st century prophet. Kind of takes away from what you are doing in my opinion.

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    1. All I know is to keep following my deepest heart and communicate the intense beauty I see in hopes that somebody else will see it too. Religion intrigues me to no end and it speaks to folks who speak that language. If you don't speak Chinese, nothing says you have to be interested and listen, and I'm totally not offended. There are several moneyless folks I know with blogs, who stay far away from religion, who I encourage you to read if this one is bothersome. Religion is a powerful tool, used for good or bad, that touches deepest hearts. It's mostly used for bad, but the good it does (abolitionists, suffragists, MLK, Gandhi) overpowers the bad when it is taken back from those abusers who've hijacked it. I simply can't help but see overwhelming beauty in it, in fact, despite how ugly most of it has become. As you can see by above comments, I can't please everybody, religious or non-religious. My heart is my heart, and I can't do anything else.

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    2. It's not a very wise choice to follow one's deepest heart.

      Jer 17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?

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    3. Watcher on the Mountain, you are confused. For example, first you claim that "God Himself" transforms the hearts of his followers, then you claim it is unwise to follow one's heart.

      William

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    4. No confusion. Transformation does not mean your heart is turned into God and so now you can follow it. It means it is transformed so that its desires are new. It doesn't want to sin and do its own will any longer. It now hungers and thirsts for God's righteousness and a deeper knowledge of Him. Where do you find that? In His Word, not your heart.

      Delete
    5. WOTM, again, no argument. All I can do is repeat what I said. I and this blog are a distraction to you. I might be a deceiver, so don't take my word for it, so forget about me and this blog, and follow Jesus as the way, the truth and the life. If you truly believe Jesus is the way, you WILL practice his teachings. You know what they are. And I wager you won't help but see that Jesus is essence of all religions. But don't take my word for it. And, again, if those who call Jesus "Lord, Lord" PRACTICE what he says, stick with them! And I wager you will see whether or not I am a deceiver. I simply cannot argue with you. When two people argue, both are wrong. There is no truth in argument. And I have been wrong.

      Delete
    6. Why do you judge my motives and accuse me of simply wanting to be right and win? Is it because I don't agree with you? What if I knew the journey to a certain far country because I'd been there. You decided you wanted to go to that country, but you began a very dangerous route, one that would end in your death instead of arrival at the country. I refused to agree with you on the route because I knew its end, but you discredited me by the ad hominem attack that I just wanted to win the argument because I wouldn't "listen" to you, and off you went.....to your death. This is how this discussion has been going.

      It doesn't matter how nice the scenery is on your chosen route, or how much of the journey is safe and well labeled with road signs. It is going to end in the fires of Hell. How can I let you go that route without showing you the correct route? It doesn't make me better than you. I'm a journeyman just as you. I simply found the way to the sought after country and want to show you the Way, the Truth and the Life, not these counterfeits and imposters you have been tricked by.

      Delete
    7. Watcher on the Mountain,

      Then Jeremiah 17:9 isn't always true? I.e. in some instances, "The heart is not deceitful above all things and is not desperately wicked"?

      Do you know your own heart?

      William

      Delete
    8. Nope, the human heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked. We can know bits and pieces of our own heart, but never the depths of it. It is God IN US that transforms our motivations and desires, but our own hearts still trick us. Therefore, the Holy Spirit in us guiding us by His Word, is our only hope of not being deceived. If what we seek after contradicts the Word of God, it is a lie and if we follow it, we are being deceived. "Let God be true and EVERY man a liar," says God in His everlasting Word. It is the standard of measurement by which all other things are measured.

      Otherwise we become like the folks in Judges where it is said of them, "and every man did that which was right in their own eyes." (Followed their own hearts).

      Delete
    9. Watcher on the Mountain,

      So your claim is -

      "God Himself" transforms our hearts, but our hearts are still "deceitful" and "desperately wicked"?

      Are you a liar?

      William

      Delete
    10. After we surrender to Jesus Christ and receive Him into our lives we are regenerated and a transformation takes place. We still, however, have the old sin nature with its old habits and tendency to sin. It is never taken away from us, but left as a test. Whereas before our transformation we had one drive and that was our own, selfish, self-aggrandizing good works, we now have the life of God within us who has given us NEW motivations to serve, commune with and glorify Him. NOW we have a choice as to which we yield to.

      However, even if we fall into our old habits of sinning, we are now never happy about it, but stricken that we have grieved a holy God. When we yield to the Holy Spirit we are filled with the fruits of joy, peace and love that are beyond all earthly emotions. They are a spiritual phenomenon that only the transformed experience. I know, because I’ve been in both camps. Before a person is born again by the Holy Spirit of God, they can be exhilarated, euphoric by happenstance or drugs, feel deep affection for another being, and anesthetize anxiety and dread with artificial means to drown those things out, but only joy and peace and agape love are to be found in God!

      Ro 6:19 I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of your flesh: for as ye have yielded your members servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity; even so now yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness.

      Ro 6:16 Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?


      Delete
    11. Watcher on the Mountain,

      I'm still not sure of your stance. Please allow me to ask again.

      So your claim is -

      "God Himself" transforms our hearts, but our hearts are still "deceitful" and "desperately wicked".

      (Is that a true statement, or a false statement?)

      Are you a liar?

      William

      Delete
    12. I already answered you--several times. So now I point you to Romans. Read it and get back to me with what you think and tell ME--Am I wrong? Am I right? Am I inaccurate? Am I just plain lying?

      Delete
    13. Watcher on the Mountain,

      "Funny, you didn't answer the question[s]".

      Reiterating your statements is not an answer to this particular question.

      Is this your claim-

      "God Himself" transforms our hearts, but our hearts are still "deceitful" and "desperately wicked"?

      William

      Delete
    14. Watcher on the Mountain,

      All I have done is repeat what "You Yourself" have said and I can see that I am not going to get you to simply and straightforwardly claim your own words. I can't blame you, they are ridiculous, and I don't need to read Romans or anything else to see this.

      Parsed out, your claim is-
      1. The heart is deceitful (sinful, wicked...)
      2. "God Himself" transforms the heart.
      3. The heart is still deceitful (sinful, wicked...)

      Where is the transformation?

      (Looking closely at your replies one can see the only thing that transforms is your claim.)

      To answer your questions-
      "Am I wrong?" Yes, you are wrong.
      "Am I right?" No, you are not right.
      "Am I accurate?" No, you are not accurate.
      "Am I just plain lying?" I can't know whether or not you are lying. (You did claim "every man a liar" and I asked if you are a liar, but you didn't answer.)

      I stand by my original claim - you are confused.

      By the way, how many entities do you have in you? You have a heart and it has a will, you have a "you" and it has a will that can heed or ignore the other wills including the heart's will, you claim at least one other creature that comes to reside in you with its own will, and, from talking to other confused Christians, I would guess that if we talked long enough you would posit an evil being and its will. That sounds confusing having to sort out all those wills and voices. No wonder you look at life as a constant battle.

      Please think about what is real.

      William

      Delete
  25. BTW..the above post wasnt meant as an insult of any kind...I respect what you are doing!!

    ReplyDelete
  26. Clear mind is like the full moon in the sky. Sometimes clouds come and cover it, but the moon is always behind them. Clouds go away, then the moon shines brightly. So don't worry about clear mind: it is always there. When thinking comes, behind it is clear mind. When thinking goes, there is only clear mind. Thinking comes and goes, comes and goes, You must not be attached to the coming or the going.

    Seung Sahn


    The Great Way has no gate. Clear water has no taste. The tongue has no bone. In complete stillness, a stone girl is dancing.

    Seung Sahn



    In the past, kong-an (koan) practicing meant checking someone's enlightenment. Now we use kong-ans to make our lives correct. . . . You must use kong-ans to take away your opinions. When you take away your opinions, your mind is clear like space, which means from moment to moment you can reflect any situation and respond correctly and meticulously.

    Seung Sahn

    ReplyDelete
  27. Behind the mask of Ghandi--another view of the "Apostle of Peace":

    http://www.sikhsundesh.net/gandhi.htm

    ReplyDelete
  28. Let's all chill for a moment. Here's a take on ' humans and consciousness'. The willfully ignorant are advised to stay clear, lest they peek and end up in the fiery fires of hell. (LOL, just kidding)

    http://www.smbc-comics.com/?id=2867

    ReplyDelete
  29. If the above link not working, here's the right link:

    http://www.smbc-comics.com/index.php?db=comics&id=2867

    ReplyDelete
  30. God is best known in the now. The feast is best enjoyed and tasted now. Divinity scares off too many people with the ultimate task of fiery righteousness of what will be...sort of a "wait 'til your father gets home" technique. I have heard the discussion, i.e. argument, too many times about Creation within oneself, nature, etc. Yes, some believe that God is all there is and since we are created from God all is good and we are God. This is a very strict line of thinking. Where I believe we are best served is when we see the magical thread of God and feel it in all. We look through God's eyes and see the same. The eyes God gave us. Childlike. Not Childish. Laura

    ReplyDelete
  31. I think that the credit debt idea extends well into the thread or threat of many religions. We will owe, we will be asked to give account for in the afterlife. Karma will ensue. This is not merely cause and effect nor how we affect each other but some invisible cosmic stronghold that says we will owe or are even owing now for actions in past lives. I am not saying I discount the possibility of a reincarnate soul, simply the concept of the ultimate "owe". How is it I owe anyone or anything or any being just simply because I am here now?
    Laura

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  32. Mr. Suelo, today, for the first time, I glanced at your web page & got engrossed in your introduction. Here are a few thoughts of my own, section by section. You should be able to correlate each comment to its own dogma.

    Nature is not a gift economy. Deer etc. browse or graze on the vegetation but I can’t believe that grass etc. has enough self-awareness to validate your ‘gift’ idea.

    On the other hand I doubt, that if the deer & other prey species could really think would say, “It’s my turn to gift the mountain lion, so here goes.” LOL, as soon as they become aware of a lions etc. they are gone. An adult kills about 1 deer a week & that 1 would have escaped if possible. If prey species could think & act on this, they would starve to death, every single predator on the planet, to save their own hide. No gift, not freely given, just brutally taken.

    Nations balance their economy? Correct, & not just in your credit/debt idea. A prophet observed, “O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walks to direct his steps.” The nations can’t balance their budgets because every individual on this planet is incapable of consistently living according to ANY rule. It’s been said that we can’t keep a LAW, even if it’s our own construction. It seems that if these things are true there’s a basic aspect of human nature keeping us from continuing on the straight & narrow. What’s the good about giving up our drug habit & switching to alcohol? Even if your reference to good & evil is valid, we still have, what seems to be a genetic trait that ALWAYS causes us to wander, like the proverbial lost sheep.

    Similarities in all religions? What is faith? In or toward what? Choosing the wrong object of faith is as if we had none.
    Grace is a fine word but can we trust in that, when we know that we all fail in this?
    What is love, & what is it to you? Greek has several words for “love”. Which do you choose to use. You throw words around freely without explaining what they mean to you. You leave your disciples to fill in the blanks with their own ideas, leading to an agreeable atmosphere where everyone thinks that you, & the others, have the same definition for the buzzwords, never stopping to wonder why everything is so agreeable.

    All you have said is very high sounding but, when analyzed, it’s shallow, a seashore sand castle, never thinking that, inevitably, the tide will come in. One may accept all this as truth & sincerely follow its dogma. However, the root of sincere is “without wax”. A potter might crack a vase, & mend it with wax, it looks fine but if held in sunlight the cracks always show. If any of your disciples were to hold your dogma to the sun they would see the cracks I’ve pointed out.

    Our nature is a wild nature, but one that needs to be washed & tamed. A feral dog; filthy, unkempt, flea ridden, no potty training & half-starved, may be accepted, but not as it is. What the dog & we need is to be washed from our own filth, the fleas killed, our tendency to excrete wherever all trained out & fed so we can appreciate what’s been done for us. Till then we’ll stay as we are, fit only for back alleys, midden heaps & road kill. Commercial etc. didn’t cause this; we’re born this way & will remain so if left to our own. The myth of the noble savage is less than fiction, it is a lie. Commerce may be an illustration of the wrongness in our species but it is only an illustration. Decades ago, Sam Hayakawa warned us to always distinguish between map & the territory. Philosophers, like you, are like armchair admirals, always pointing out what should be, rather than accepting what could be. You’ve created your own mystic maze & you seem, in spite of your denial, to have become a guru to many. However the tide continues its advance.

    By the way, I’ve noticed that you don’t like to argue, that’s fine since I do not argue, I tell.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Mr. Suelo, today, for the first time, I glanced at your web page & got engrossed in your introduction."
      You might be surprised if you go past a glance and an intro, and maybe find out who I am. Nothing says you have to, but if you're going to write a review a person's life and philosophy, it kind of sort of makes a little bit of sense to find out what their philosophy and life is, no?

      Delete
    2. "Philosophers, like you, are like armchair admirals, always pointing out what should be, rather than accepting what could be"

      You can argue, or "tell" any story you wish concerning your view of the human condition. But you can't accuse Suelo of not practicing what he preaches. That he does, in fact, live according to his precepts is the foremost reason he earns respect and has a following.

      As for high sounding sophistry, just listen to yourself.

      Delete
    3. So is what Anonymous said above right or wrong?

      Delete
  33. https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=3620541364865&set=t.1767245920&type=3&theater

    ReplyDelete
  34. Hello Everyone,

    Lately, I have been thinking about the role of religion, but I soon realized I have only heard negative connotations associated with it. Thus, I was wondering, what are some positive aspects of religion that only it can offer?

    Sincerely, DF

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    Replies
    1. Many religious folks of whatever religion are quick to *tell* you the positive aspects of their own religion and the negative aspects of other religions. I've witnessed this among all of them (Krishna, Muslim, Christian, Hindu, even Buddhist). I have a Muslim who keeps emailing me telling me I'm doomed to hell until I believe that Islam is the only true religion and Muhammad the only valid prophet and the Quran the only valid scripture.

      But religion's positive aspects can't be *told* except by demonstration, usually with mouth zipped shut. That leaves very little positive, but I do have hope and see a great power in religion I don't see anywhere else. Whoever controls the religion of a culture has the power of the culture. Usually the rich control religion.

      Positive examples:
      A) In history: the end to slavery and apartheid, civil rights, India's independence, liberation theology defending the oppressed in Central America, the end of Roman gladiator games, the transformation of Tibetan culture from violent tribes to a peaceful culture. Secular movements have difficulty moving the poor and uneducated. Religion reaches and gives power to uneducated, poor people for empowering social change. I can't find examples of religion working positively in the hands of the wealthy, when it becomes a tool of the state, and ignores its own core principles, namely giving up possessions. Religion doesn't work well positively in the US, except among the lower class African Americans, mostly.

      B) On the personal level: in my own travels, I experienced the unconditional hospitality and generosity of Buddhists, Hindus, Christians, and Muslims, all "lower class", who didn't see sects and doctrines but saw people.

      Those small bits make up for the intolerance and bigotry in most religion, and give me hope. I yearn to see an end of religious bigotry ("we're right and everybody else is wrong"). When we give up possessions and share them, as all the religions teach, we give up dogma. Dogma is possession of ideas, the root of all possession and bigotry.

      Am I too optimistic? Only time and experience will tell.

      Delete
    2. Says Suelo: "Dogma is possession of ideas, the root of all possession and bigotry."

      Isn't that dogma??

      Delete
    3. yes.
      This statement is absolutely dogma.
      The Son of Man comes at a time
      when you *do not think*

      Delete
    4. That's right. Do not think, so God cannot reason with you and you come to the truth. That's the only way the Far Eastern gurus can get you to accept their bankrupt and failing systems--convince you, DO NOT THINK. Therefore, if you let them explain the Bible for you, you can continue to NOT THINK nor come to a knowledge of the truth.

      Delete
  35. So, dogma is okay when YOU take it up. You have special privilege? Interesting. How did you attain to such a promotion that you do not allow for others what you have special privilege to do? Oh yes, and the Far Eastern gurus also have special privilege to take up dogma. But the lowly Christians are given a new and exclusive commandment---Thou shalt not have dogma. It's bad, bad, bad! Hmmmm.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I thought folks would get it and get a kick out of the little koan. Oh well.

      Delete
    2. Greetings Daniel - I was curious to know if you are familiar with the book A Course in Miracles ?. Its a remarkable text. I hope your well and thanks for sharing your journey with us..
      p.s check out the work of Dr Kenneth Wapnick also, an incredible mind..
      peace
      Richard (scotland)

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    3. Yes, Richard, I've read small parts of ACIM - hoping to read more, as several good friends recommend it to me.

      Delete
    4. Well once you get your hands on a copy your in for a real treat...."In you is all of Heaven. Every leaf that falls is given life in you.Each bird that ever sang will sing again in you. And every flower that ever bloomed has saved its perfume and its loveliness for you....ACIM p527"
      Great stuff straight from the mind of Christ, your mind, my mind, one mind. have fun Daniel.
      peace Richard

      Delete
  36. “In Buddhism,
    love is a totally foreign concept,
    whereas it is central to the Christian
    story of creation and redemption. God
    is love (1 John 4:16–19), and He is not
    willing to let humanity go even though
    we sinned against Him. (John 3:16)
    “But according to Buddha, love is
    one of the nine fetters which hinder
    enlightenment. Love produces desire
    and attachment which lead to karma
    which leads to suffering. That’s why,
    traditionally, a person who aims to
    attain enlightenment must renounce
    his family, not have sexual relations,
    and develop a detached attitude towards
    affection. Buddha affirmed it by leaving
    his young wife and newborn child at
    the age of 29, to go in search of truth.
    In Buddhism, love is the enemy. In
    Christianity, Love is a Person named
    Jesus, our ultimate friend, guide and Saviour.”

    CARL WIELAND, M.B., B.S.,Carl Wieland talks to Pastor Steve Cioccolanti, Buddha, Science and Jesus.

    Pastor Steve Cioccolanti, author of the book From
    Buddha to Jesus: An Insider’s View of Buddhism and Christianity, is the B.A., M.Ed., is Founder and Director of the globally focused organization Discover Ministries, as well as a pastor of a local church in Melbourne,Australia, where he currently resides with his family..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. the problem as i see it is theology trying to make itself universal. Love has no particular form, it is not a thing, it assumes whatever "form" is most helpful to us, a movie, a coffee, a book, a person, a dream, etc. To say that one way is better than another is simply a competition, a sport, no matter how smart and well researched. Love is beyond definition, it just is... and that's it, that's all we can say about love. We either get in touch with it or we don't, sooner or later we always do. Also Buddhism is not anyone thing, its a diverse and living practice, just like our relationship with Jesus, we get close to his forgiveness of us and freak out, we get close to Buddha's acceptance of us and freak out. To split theological hairs is freaking out by another name..Both Jesus and Buddha simply ask us to rest in our guiltlessness, to dissolve into our innocence without any admission fee. Very few can come to terms with the idea that we don't earn our innocence, its just waiting patiently for us to acknowledge it, and when we do the dream of separation is over, that's why we freak out. We love been special and unique, Jesus and Buddha think otherwise, they wait infinitely till the children decide to come home. That's what i think anyway, could be wrong, (don't really care)..peace Richard

      Delete
    2. Anonymous 1 -
      The Golden Rule is love, the rule under which all scripture and religion must be measured, according to Jesus. You might want to practice the Golden Rule and do to Buddhists what you want them to do to you. That means listen, go to the source. You clearly have not. How would you like if somebody learned about Christianity from a non-Christian with a definite bias against Christianity? Why don't you investigate Buddhism for yourself rather than getting false information from somebody who has a clear bias against all religions and ideas but his own? Why not practice the Golden Rule, love, even as you talk of love? You might be way surprised if you look at Buddhism in the same way you want Buddhists to look at your Christianity. See what it really says about love! First, read the Dhammapada (it's online, and it's fairly short), not to pick it apart (in the same way you want Buddhists to read the Bible) and see whether or not your pastor friend is bearing false witness!

      Also, you might want to actually look at your own Jesus' teachings about leaving family and attachment, which are way way harsher than Buddha's. You then might say it's a matter of "interpretation", that "non-Christians" just doesn't understand, even as you, a non-Buddhist interpret 2nd hand info on Buddha's way softer teaching on leaving family and attachment as you want, even as a Buddhist would say you don't understand, not being Buddhist. Without the Golden Rule, your Christianity becomes utterly meaningless.

      Delete
    3. By their fruits ye shall know them. Buddha left his young wife and newborn son when Buddha was 29. He lived out his notions of love. The life either backs up ones words or denies them. His life backed up his words revealing a failed system of subjective opinions.

      Why should we not go into a belief system looking for what is wrong with it? That is exactly what peer review in science is ideally supposed to do. That is how science progresses, finding the difference between right and wrong ideas. It works. Truth and love are inexplicably one.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous,

      What does Jesus say about leaving family and attachment?

      William

      Delete
    5. I don't see anywhere in Scripture where Jesus Christ tells anyone to abandon their families. He talks about sons and giving them what they ask for. How can you do this if you have left your sons to go hunt for "truth"?

      Matthew 7: 9 Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?

      10 Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?

      11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?

      He talks about parents and the wickedness of abandoning them.

      Matthew 15: 4 For God commanded, saying, Honor your father and mother: and, He that curses father or mother, let him die the death.

      5 But you say, Whosoever shall say to his father or his mother, It is a gift, by whatsoever you might be profited by me;

      6 And honor not his father or his mother, he shall be free. Thus have you made the commandment of God of no effect by your tradition.

      7 You hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying,

      8 This people draws near to me with their mouth, and honors me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.

      9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

      Mark 7: 10 For Moses said, Honor your father and your mother; and, Whoso curses father or mother, let him die the death:

      11 But you say, If a man shall say to his father or mother, It is Corban, that is to say, a gift, by whatsoever you might be profited by me; he shall be free.

      12 And you let him no more do anything for his father or his mother;

      13 Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which you have delivered: and many similar things you do.

      Christ DOES, however, talk about how in the last days the love of many will grow cold because iniquity will abound!

      Mt 24:12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.

      Christ's words are confirmed by the Apostles He commissioned:

      I Timothy 3:2- "in the last days perilous times shall come.

      2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,

      3 WITHOUT NATURAL AFFECTION (will abandon their loved ones emotionally with the followup of physical abandonment), trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,

      4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;

      5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.


      His commissioned Apostles talk about husbands honoring and loving their wives to the point of giving up their own lives for them. A man cannot very well do that if he has abandoned his wife to fulfill some sort of religiosity.

      Eph 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;

      Col 3:19 Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them.

      God continues with the warning to a husband that if he does not honor his wife, his prayers will be hindered. God will not answer his prayers!

      1Pe 3:7 Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.

      In fact, the all encompassing "do unto others as you would have them do unto you" is not very well accomplished by abandoning your family or anyone else in need, to go hunt for "truth."

      Delete
    6. "If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple."
      Luke 14:26

      "Call no man on earth your father."
      Matthew 23:9

      "Then one said to him, 'Look, your mother and your brothers are standing outside, seeking to speak with you."
      But he answered ..., "Who is My mother and who are My brothers?"
      And He stretched out His hand toward His disciples and said, "Here are My mother and My brothers!
      "For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother."

      You can quote other scriptures as much as you like to soften these verses, but the fact is, they still remain. In the same way there are droves of Buddhist scriptures imploring us to love each other and family that you can quote to soften Buddha's less harsh teaching about giving up family attachment.

      One who lacks love will look for what he or she perceives as bad in the other and refuse to look at the good. One who lacks love will reject the Golden Rule. This is why what we call Christianity is not Christianity, because it is in competition and searches for the bad in others' heart-felt faith and ignores their good. Truth is not in competition. It only stands.

      Delete
    7. You missed my point all together and on top of that misjudged my motives, calling me competitive. Is that love? No, it is not, for the Scriptures say Love believes all things. That is, love gives the other person the benefit of the doubt by believing all GOOD things in that person before it believes bad. Love must have overwhelming evidence before it will accept the content of slander and accusation against another.

      Have I judged your motives yet? Have I accused you of anything without overwhelming evidence? No. I have simply judged your words. I do that out of love. Pointing out error is not a game or a competition. It is a warning that is founded in love. The prophets of old pointed out the error of others, not out of competition, but out of hearts steeped in love, for God and for those they spoke to.

      So, back to the posts. Christ when He was dying on the cross did not abandon His mother even in His death. He made provision for her by appointing John the disciple to care for her after His own departure.

      Joh 19:26 When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!

      Joh 19:27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.

      But Buddha abandoned his wife and son, demonstrating by his life what he intended by his words.

      Christ never abandoned His family, but spoke and acted against any such notion. Therefore, the passages that speak of hating mother and father to be a follower of His have not the intended meaning you attach to them. No. They are making a COMPARISON. Your love for God should supersede all other loves in such a way that those loves seem like hatred in comparison.

      The Muslims demonstrate this concept in a practical way. When they come to Christ, they know they will be black-listed by their families. Rather than choose their families over Christ, they become willing to give them up to have Christ. They do not abandon their families. Their families abandon them, sometimes even to the point of death. They are willing to accept that condition, to have Christ. The love they have for Christ goes beyond even their care for their own lives. They hate their lives in comparison to their love for Christ, to the point of being willing to give them up for Him. And this is exactly what many do and what Christ is talking about!

      Otherwise, the passage you quoted is also encouraging suicide—something Jim Jones accepted as a valid interpretation. He was wrong and the results of what he purported are etched in blood upon the historical record. Words are powerful. It is essential they be right.

      Christ said He had come not to bring peace, but a sword. Did Christ ever use a sword? No. But He certainly brought division, even to this day, and those that did not believe were often compelled to use their swords against the believers. Every disciple but John was martyred. This is what Christ meant by that! You must get it right! Your eternal soul depends upon it!


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    8. One more thing. When Christ said that those who do His will are his mother and father, brothers and sisters, he was not denying His own blood relations. He was pointing out that the spiritual union provided by faith in Him produced deeper and more powerful bonds than even our physical familial relationships!

      This is true! In my travels, those I've met as total strangers, but who were in the family of God through Jesus Christ IMMEDIATELY recognized the bonds of Christ in me and I in them, without saying a word! We have picked each other out in large crowds and recognized our common bond of Christianity. It is as though we've known each other eternally! We have a spiritual closeness that goes beyond even physical relationship! We know experientially exactly what Christ was talking about!

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    9. "In this world hate never dispelled hate.
      Only love dispels hate.
      This is the Law, ancient and inexhaustible.....
      However many scriptures you read,
      however many you speak,
      what good do they do you
      if you do not act upon them?
      Are you a shepherd who counts another person's sheep?"
      --Gautama Buddha (563-483BC) (Dhammapada 1)

      "Live in joy, in love, even among those who hate.
      Live in joy, in health, even among the afflicted.
      Live in joy, in peace, even among the troubled.
      Live in joy, without possessions, like the shining ones.
      The winner sows hatred because the loser suffers.
      Let go of winning and losing and find joy....
      With gentleness overcome anger.
      With generosity overcome meanness.
      With truth overcome deceit.
      Speak truth.
      Give whenever you can."
      (Dham. 15)

      "How easy it is to see your brother's faults,
      How hard it is to face your own.
      You winnow his in the wind like chaff,
      but yours you hide,
      like a cheat covering an unlucky throw.
      Dwelling on your brother's faults
      multiplies your own."
      (Dham. 18)

      "Be quiet and loving and fearless,
      for the mind talks but the body knows."
      (Dham. 19)

      "Of good friends along the way,
      of a pure and active life,
      so live your life in love.
      Do your work...
      let fall willfulness and hatred."
      (Dham. 25)

      "A master gives up mischief.
      He is serene.
      He leaves everything behind him.
      He does not take offence and does not give it.
      He never returns evil for evil....
      The master moves with love among the unloving,
      with peace and detachment among the hungry and querulous...
      Hatred has fallen from him."
      (Dham. 26)

      "Let none cajole or flout his fellow anywhere;
      let none wish others harm in resentment or in hate.

      Just as with her own life
      a mother shields from hurt her only child,
      let all-embracing thoughts for all that lives be yours,

      an all-embracing love for all the universe
      in all its heights and depths and breadth,
      unstinted love,
      unmarred by hate within,
      not rousing enmity.

      So, as you stand or walk, or sit or lie,
      reflect with all your might on this.
      This is deemed a Divine State."

      --Buddha (Sutta-Nipata)

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    10. Do unto Buddhists as you would have Buddhists do unto you.
      Do unto Muslims as you would have Muslims do unto you.

      Listen.

      Golden Rule your enemy.

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    11. I would have someone tell me the truth and I love those who have. I am eternally grateful to them and so I must turn around and do the same for others.

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  37. So when science presents empirical evidence and says the old scientific thought is obsolete, it is simply competing in a sport? Can you really judge motives like that, especially when it is truth we are filtering through the barrage of information for? If you don't care whether you are right or wrong, could it be you that has engaged himself in sport?

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    1. Greetings, Science is a type of sport. When i say 'i don't care' i mean it in a gentle sense. I practice martial arts every week (for years), every week i wrestle with folk, i don't care if i win or not, i just enjoy wrestling, sometimes i appear to win sometimes not, i simply don't care. Same with Buddhism,Jesus,truth,love - i don't care about the 'form' love takes, i just want swim around in the content. Ditch the filtering, turn the tap on full and let the love flow, then ideas of right or wrong are no longer a problem.. that's my experience anyway. Thinking is a defence against the love Jesus offers, (or Buddha or whatever). Peace Richard..

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  38. Thinking and learning true knowledge help you to discern which fruit is poisonous and which is health giving, which love is real versus which APPEARS to be righteous or good, but leads to Hell.

    Isa 1:18 Come now, and let us REASON together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

    Ho 4:6 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.



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    1. Isa 1:18.. clearly this tells us that we are mistaken about our sin, that what we reason to be sin is in fact a hallucination,a delusion. These are comforting words, the kind you may tell a child who has mistaken a shadow for a monster..

      Ho 4:6. i have no idea what this means, if the bible ever engenders fear i just literally cut it out, my copy is getting very thin.

      i talked to Jesus about hell and he couldn't stop laughing, he didn't take me seriously. Every time i ask about it (hell) he just cracks up laughing. I think i he is trying to tell me something.. peace Rich

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  39. I don’t know what you mean by conventional religion, when there are how many religions in the world? But I do know that Evangelical Christianity has certainly caught on to the signs of the Zodiac! Here is an excerpt from the book, God’s Voice in the Stars, Zodiac signs and Bible truth, by Kenneth G. Fleming. He says in his introduction that the book is a “presentation of the ancient sign-language of the heavens, which depicted the great facts of the Gospel before writing was in common use.”

    “David knew that God created the stars (Genesis 1:14-19). He also understood that it was God, not chance, who set them in their specific places (Psalm 8:3). Even more important, he knew that God gave names to the stars (Psalm 147:4; Isaiah 40:26). David, like most of his contemporaries, also knew the meanings of the names of the stars. In his native language of Hebrew, the names of the stars were terms commonly used in the Messianic prophecies and aspirations of God’s ancient people. Spica means The Branch. Arcturus means He Comes. Pollux means Who Comes to Suffer. Antares means The Wounded. Sirius means The Prince. Elnath means Slain. Procyon means The Redeemer. Vega means He Shall Be Exalted.

    “Not only did David know that the names of individual stars had meanings, but he also knew that the stars (plural) had a divine purpose: “They shall be for signs, and for seasons, and for days, and years” (Genesis 1:14). The stars were to be for signs to indicate happenings. I am convinced that these “signs” comprised a pictorial presentation of what God was going to do in history, especially concerning the suffering and glory of the coming Saviour. David knew, like Job, that God caused the twelve signs to appear in their regular order during the course of a year (Job 38:31-32 margin).

    “The first sign is that of Virgo, which spoke of the coming Seed of the woman, who would crush the head of the serpent (Genesis 3:15). The prophetic revelation continued through all the other signs, depicting the atonement, the suffering Redeemer, the Messiah coming to rule, and the final overthrow of the serpent-enemy. The final sign is Leo, which speaks of Christ as the Lion of the tribe of Judah which has prevailed. The prophecy in the signs of the heavens follows the same order as that in the Word of God. David knew this and exulted, “The heavens declare the glory of God!”

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  40. WOTM -
    For some reason, this won't go under your last comment above, so I'm putting it here.
    Firstly, come on, I'm talking not about you personally competing with me, but your and the anonymous Buddha commenter's sectarianism competiting with other sects. That's the theme of the thread. This is not about your motives, but taking your words at face value. By your own admission, and in anonymous' Buddha post we are commenting on, and the posts of many other professed Christians, there is outright competetion between "Christianity" other religions. Am I wrong?
    Secondly, I don't even disagree with you interpretation of Jesus' statement about hating family members. I simply quoted it, and you invented my interpretation of it. My point was to show Buddhists can judge Christianity by that one statement, without looking at the whole, in the very same way you and the pastor judge Buddhism without looking at the whole! In fact, when I was a child, I my Buddhist aunt told my mom whe had problems with Christianity because of that very verse about hating family! The fact that the quoted pastor bears false witness to what Buddhism says about love shows his info is bogus. So I quoted Buddha to end the falsehood.
    Thirdly, wouldn't sectarian Christians discount Buddhism because it is "them" and not "us" ("Christian"). It really has nothing to do with whether or not Buddha abandoned his family, no? In the same way, wouldn't you reject Taoism, no matter what Lao Tzu did or said, simply because it is not "Christian" no matter what good or bad fruit they bear? Isn't the verdict already decided? Guilty even before proven guilty or innocent, merely because it isn't "Christian" and has the wrong vocabulary (doctrine)?
    Would you consider Buddhism right, even as you want Buddhists to consider Christianity right? This really isn't about who is right and who is wrong. I in fact agree with much of what you say about Christianity. It's the spirit, the attitude, not the words, I can't swallow: "we" are right and "they" are wrong. It's this attitude that has caused 2000 years of world domination and decimation and disrespect of other cultures and persecution and excomunication of even Christendom's own saints and theologians. It's the same attitude that has a grip on Islam, blinding the eyes to Islam's profound truth. I'm not discounting the good that true Christianity has done, and I have and do fully proclaim it, despite those who want to throw the whole thing out. In fact, that's my point. But true Christianity does not praise itself and down others. True Christianity is in competition with no one.
    I can see no difference between true Christianity and true Buddhism and true Islam, not because that sounds pc but because I see what I see.

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    1. Suelo, I'm going to have to break this up into more than one comment (three) because Wordpress says it's too long.

      Suelo: "your and the anonymous Buddha commenter's sectarianism competiting with other sects. That's the theme of the thread. This is not about your motives, but taking your words at face value."

      Me: Taking my words at face value? Where have I admitted to competing with other “sects” or my “sect” competing with other “sects”? You are reading a motive into my words that is not there, NOT taking them at face value.

      Suelo: "The fact that the quoted pastor bears false witness to what Buddhism says about love shows his info is bogus. So I quoted Buddha to end the falsehood."

      Me: The Pastor WAS a Buddhist, and now an X one! So what the pastor quoted was not really a Buddha concept?

      So, are you saying that Buddha’s fruit (abandoning his wife and newborn son to pursue truth) is not applicable to his words?

      Only Christians “fruits” should be judged, even if their words do NOT line up with the Words of the Bible? If their fruits line up with their own private teachings, but don’t line up with the Words of the Bible, then are they Christians? Wouldn't they be their own private cult? If they are not Christians, what is all the racket about?

      If they do not believe the Words of the Scriptures they claim to hold to, but spiritualize them, play with them, twist them and attach meanings to them that are not there, then how can we judge Christianity by them? They, by your own admission, are not Christians.

      So, let’s judge the words of the Bible. Are they the truth or are they not? If not, then no good fruit will come from them, no matter what or who they agree with. If they are, then heed them and bear fruit!

      It’s really not whether Christians follow Jesus’ teachings or not. If they do, they are, at least, acting like Christians. If they don’t, they are….some other cult. Is it the truth? Is the Bible the truth?

      Did Buddha follow his own teachings? Then the fruit was bad, because he abandoned his wife and newborn son. Did he NOT follow his own teachings? Then the fruit of THAT separate cult was abandoning his wife and his newborn son. Why did he not follow his own words?

      Is there, then, ANY evidence that his teachings bear good fruit? What is it?

      How about you? What is the fruit of your words? Love, joy, peace? A following? The poor are provided for? The sick? The dying? The fatherless and the widows? The prisoner?

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  41. Suelo: "Thirdly, wouldn't sectarian Christians discount Buddhism because it is "them" and not "us" ("Christian")."

    Me: I can pretty much guarantee you that the different “prophets” that strayed away from the strait and narrow teachings of the Scriptures had something else wrong with their lives. What you actually believe affects what you actually do in your life. You are deceived if you think words have no value, no impact on the life.

    You are judging my motives again, insisting that I reject these other belief systems simply because they are “them” and not “us.” You missed everything that I have tried to say. I said that their systems do not line up with the facts and the fruits of it show in their behaviors.

    When you look at the actual lives of Buddha, Mohammad, Gandhi, they are glaring failures. When you look at the life of Christ, you can find no fault in Him. That’s because these other prophets were mere men gone astray from the path of the strait and narrow way. Christ did not because He is GOD perfect and holy.

    Suelo: "It's the spirit, the attitude, not the words, I can't swallow: "we" are right and "they" are wrong."

    Me: Is that what you told your math teacher when you got problems wrong? Did you confront your science teachers with this exclusive attitude of teaching that there are outdated myths in science made obsolete by modern factual discoveries? There is right science, in other words, and wrong science?

    When you were taught that when you get medicine wrong, a lot of people suffer and die, did you contend with your informers about that?

    Suelo: "I can see no difference between true Christianity and true Buddhism and true Islam, not because that sounds pc but because I see what I see."

    That is because you do not understand what true Christianity is. The reason you don’t understand what it is, is because you spiritualize the Bible, rather than read it in plain grammatical/historical/contextual sense letting IT interpret itself, rather than Buddha, Mohammad, Gandhi and let’s throw in Joseph Smith too while we’re at it. You have also ignored the sordid fruit of HIS life! WHENEVER Christians go astray from the truths of the Word of God, they go astray in their lives too. But doesn’t the Bible say that?

    Tit 3: 10 A man that is an heretick after the first and second admonition reject;

    11 Knowing that he that is such is subverted, and sinneth, being condemned of himself.

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  42. Suelo: "By your own admission, and in anonymous' Buddha post we are commenting on, and the posts of many other professed Christians, there is outright competetion between "Christianity" other religions. Am I wrong?"

    Me: Yes, you are wrong. Please provide the actual quotes of the admission we have made to competition. If by discriminating between the information in the Bible and other information that contradicts its revelations we are by that alone accused of competition, then any conclusions that exclude contrary conclusions can be labeled as competition.

    I gave you previous examples of math and science. Medicine learned that bleeding a patient often debilitated or killed the patient and for certain did not cure them. When it began to discover proper cures for disease, it disallowed bleeding. Was it therefore in competition to discern between right and wrong medicine?

    Your accusation reveals that you do not believe the Bible is fact. Not believing it is a fact makes it cool that anything that contradicts it is okay also, because well, nothing of religion is factual. It’s all a game. When we want to do what is right in our own eyes, we just put the religious board game away and serve our own wills, emotions and appetites.

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    1. Watcher on the Mountain,

      You are failing to realize that you give the Bible meaning. One person might interpret it one way (bring or give one meaning to it), another person might interpret it a different way (giving it a different meaning). Hence, all the various interpretations, various sects, some of the problems in this thread, etc. In other words, if there was an original intent by an author, you cannot access or prove that original intent. Given this, when you declare something true in the Bible, all that really means is, "I, Watcher on the Mountain, think that my interpretation is the true interpretation".

      (I would argue that good interpretations rely on reason and experience.)

      How do you determine whether or not something is true?

      William

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    2. So, when you read your history books, literature books, math books, science books, you cannot determine the intent of the author? Didn't we learn in reading comprehension classes how to read a book with understanding?? Now, of course, if you begin to spiritualize all your books, 1. you're going to fail your classes and 2. if everybody spiritualizes their textbooks, they are ALL going to fail their classes. There is one meaning, unless you start playing with the text. Then there are as many meanings as their are people. This is what we did with God's Word! We spiritualized and played with it, until we now have 30,000 denominations. Then we blame that on the Bible and insist that no one can therefore understand it.

      How about this verse? Mr 1:9 And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of John in Jordan.

      Pretty straight forward, don't you think? Unless of course you start spiritualizing it. Then it can mean anything.

      Joh 19:17 And he bearing his cross went forth into a place called the place of a skull, which is called in the Hebrew Golgotha:

      Do you want to know who was bearing his cross? Then look at the verse right before it. It will tell you who was bearing His cross.

      John 19: 16 Then delivered he him therefore unto them to be crucified. And they took Jesus, and led him away.

      That verse provides some of the context for the next verse. You find out who, in the previous verse, the next verse is talking about.

      Isn't that easy? Spiritualizing makes it very hard. The one doing it always insinuates that they are a special "guru" getting special revelations. What sense does that make? God already gave the revelation of His Word. Why would He re-revelate it? Why not just keep giving additional revelations? See, nothing of what is going on here makes any sense. It is not the way a God of order and logic would work. His creation shows that!

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    3. Watcher on the Mountain,

      What do you mean by "spiritualize"?

      How do you determine whether or not something is true?

      When the Bible says, "the Kingdom of God", what does it mean?

      William

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    4. Sorry I missed this comment, William. By spiritualize, I mean to give a symbolic or analogical meaning, when the literary style does not warrant that. The literal sense is the first sense to apply to a passage unless the literary style or text itself tells that it is analogical, a parable, or symbolic.

      For example. Genesis says that God created the Earth in 6 days. Some people spiritualize the days to mean ages, eons or some other long period of time. The Bible gives no indication it meant for that passage to be taken spiritually, symbolically or analogically.

      Another example would be the Egyptian bondage that the Children of Israel were brought under until God supernaturally liberated them. Some might deny the literal happening and claim that their bondage simply was a symbol of the bondage to sin we are brought under, or bondage to the Buddha concept of Dukkha, or maybe the world, or even the devil!

      A Buddhist might claim that we can be released from such bondage by taking the middle path. A more Christian outlook might point us to God as the Great Liberator. Each of the plagues God used might be interpreted symbolically to represent various trials and temptations the Christian goes through.

      However, the literal sense has one meaning. The children of Israel were literally brought into bondage by the Egyptian Pharoah, God brought various literal plagues and pestilence to Egypt until the Pharoah let the Jews go. There might be secondary spiritual applications, but they are indeed secondary to learning the literal meaning of the words, unless specified otherwise by the Bible itself.

      When the Bible refers to the "the Kingdom of God," it tells of both a literal kingdom and a spiritual one. We know this, however, not from being a special guru that gets their own revelations, but from the Word of God itself. It says so.

      All through the Old Testament, it makes prophetic predictions about an earthly kingdom that God will set up with Israel. But it also mentions that the kingdom is within believers. Believers become members of a spiritual kingdom as well as the Jews that will be given an earthly kingdom. Both are spoken of and to be taken just as they are spoken about.

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    5. I will try to answer the question, "How do you determine whether or not something is true?" later, as I'm too exhausted right now to think straight to give a decent answer! :)

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  43. It's easier to physically raise the dead than to for this argument to go anywhere. Is it such a mystery why more and more people want nothing to do with any religion?

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    1. Is this a veiled accusation? If not, then who's fault is it that this argument is not going anywhere? What do you mean by "not going anywhere"? Do you mean that I am not agreeing with you? What is the reason you think that is?

      I will tell you MY reason for it. It is because you have not presented a good enough case for your position. You have not provided any evidence, so far, that shows your interpretive methods of the Bible are the correct ones, anything beyond theoretical claims that your propositions actually work in real life. You expect me to judge Christians by their fruit (Why? I would only conclude that they are not Christians, but that would in no way prove the Bible false!) However you ignore and want me to ignore the fruits of all the leaders of these other worldviews. You seem to ignore also the GOOD fruit that came from the life of Christ that proved His words were the truth!

      In other words, you seem to want me to accept YOUR words on faith, but reject the Words of the Scriptures upon no basis whatsoever!

      As far as people wanting nothing to do with any religion, mainly Christianity, didn't you know that is a fulfillment of prophesy?

      2Th 2:3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away (ἀποστασία--defection, apostasy) first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;

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  44. I looked up the Pastor and found he had been a Thai Buddhist, so I confess my error assuming he was giving second-hand information. Apparently, he grew up in Buddhist culture blind to Buddha's central teachings emulating love above all (as I quoted above). No more mysterious than us growing up in Christian culture blind to Christ's teachings emulating love above all. It's a world of pots calling kettles black. But maybe if we argue enough the pots will come clean.

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    1. What explanation do you give for the contradictory teachings then? Also, what explanation do you have for Buddha abandoning his wife and newborn son and evidently his own teachings? And why do we allow this man to explain the Bible to us, and neglect to hear what the perfect God-man, Jesus Christ, has to say about His own Scriptures??

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  45. Why Siddharta Gautama, confused and unenlightened, before he was called Buddha, abandoned his wife and son for 6 yearsis a good question. Though he left them under care of his wealthy family, and though he returned after he found healing, it still caused great suffering. Why Jesus, unlike Buddha, commanded us to hate our family, including children, in order to become his disciple, is a good question. Why Jesus would not even call Mary his mother, but simply refered to her as 'woman', and acknowledged no earthly father, is a good question. Why we never ask why men abandon wife and children to go to war is a good question. Why Abraham abandoned his slave concubine, Hagar, and his child, Ishmael into the desert without enough water to survive, is a good question. Why Abraham would have killed his own son, Isaac, if he were not stopped by an angel, is a good question. It is even through this act that Jesus and the Apostles call people of faith the children of Abraham. Why Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and Buddhism are so patriarchal is a good question. I can't argue, just raise these valid questions.

    Why Judaism, Christianity, and Islam have a continual history of slinging mud at each other and at other religions is a good question. Why the pot calls the kettle black is a good question. Why we are experts in the faults of others but utterly blind to our own is a good question.

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  46. I have very honestly and sincerely answered the questions thrown at me about Christ. I answered with context, explanatory cross references and real life examples, to arrive at a logical conclusion.

    Now it's your turn. You are, by ignoring those answers and tossing them back again, plus adding more questions to them in a blame shifting manner, and then adding a dash of accusations, very cleverly avoiding my questions. Are you being guileless in this response?


    "(Christ) Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth...." I Peter 2: 22


    Or are you revealing that you DON'T have the answers. If you don't have answers, it appears that this is a case of blind faith to me, in a system that has not been proven right or able to work in any substantial way.

    What I have done is not slinging mud. How about you? What I am doing is delving into the reality of all these belief systems. If they are the truth, it should be apparent in SOME way or another---in consistence, in practical success, in non-contradiction, with itself, with life, with the facts. Accepting something you have not put to the test, that is, counted the cost of--is just plain foolish. It's called gullibility.

    Now. Buddha abandoned his wife and son before he was "enlightened." Christ, the leader of the Christian movement, was always perfect. There is one that is good, that is God. Christ is God.







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    1. Watcher on the Mountain,

      You keep throwing out that the Buddha left his wife and son as if that is the most horrific thing you can imagine, disqualifying everything the Buddha says. You apparently haven't considered why someone might suggest that attachment is undesirable, and is actually a cause of suffering. So, when Jesus says hate your family, you are boggled and have to put a spin on it - "He says hate your family, but he doesn't mean hate your family". What happened to "Pretty straight forward, don't you think?" Maybe this is what you mean by "spiritualize"?

      Things you have put forth show a lack of understanding. I have been trying to show this, but you "disappear" whenever I ask relatively tough questions (for example, cf my replies on Tuesday, February 12, 2012 at 1:11:00 PM MST and Wednesday, February 27, 2013 at 7:12:00 PM MST).

      William

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    2. I deleted my comment so as not to repeat what William said above and not detract from it, but to add to it by repeating the question as to why Abraham, "the Father of all Believers," abandoned his concubine and child in the desert without enough water to survive, and why he would have killed his son had God not intervened. This is the only way we can answer your question about Buddha, by answering the same dilemma in our own religion. Then we can move on to your other points. One point at a time, starting with the first.

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    3. And so William, all you can answer me when I've shown you proper exegesis of a passage, is that I put a "spin" on it?

      Did not the disciples, when they willingly laid their lives down in martyrdom rather than deny the truths God had revealed to them, show they literally hated their lives even unto death, in comparison to the love and obedience they had for their Savior? They took their Savior literally and literally forsook all to have Jesus Christ. They did not abandon all, they chose to follow Christ even if it meant losing everything to do so. They lost everything.

      Mt 16:25 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.

      Mr 8:35 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it.

      Lu 9:24 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it.

      Lu 17:33 Whosoever shall seek to save his life shall lose it; and whosoever shall lose his life shall preserve it.

      Must be important. It is repeated four times! You better figure it out, then!

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    4. ^^^^ So, William, are you going to tell Jesus Christ he put a spin on His words too? Tell me how that goes for you!

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  47. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  48. Why did Abraham send his wife’s slave and her child out into the desert with inadequate supplies? I suspect that you have ulterior motives, just as you do about why this same Abraham would have killed his other son & heir.

    First, why exile Hagar and Ishmael? The original idea came from Sarah through her jealousy. Abraham did resist her demand since Ishmael was his son too. It is clearly stated, Genesis 21:8—20. Read it for yourself.

    The Bible says that; Abraham was loath to exile the slave and their child. But God Himself intervened telling Abraham to do as Sarah said. God did promise that He would take care of things. Abraham believed God and obeyed. God did intervene, as He had promised, and Ishmael grew to manhood etc.

    Abraham indeed obeyed, convinced that God would take care of his son and the slave woman Hagar. I will tell you why God had Abraham exile his son and his slave woman mother. Up-time He was going to use this as an illustration of a spiritual truth. This was done by Paul in his letter to the Galatian church where he reminded those Galatians that salvation was not to be bought by good works etc. even those mandated by the Mosaic Law. Rather justification comes by faith in God Himself. Hagar the slave is likened to the bondage of the Law and the free woman, Sarah, is likened to the freedom of the gospel found only in Jesus the Christ, the Messiah. Galatians 4:24—31.

    Now! As I said, Suelo was also trolling for an explanation for another of Abraham’s life crises. So I’ll answer this too. Suelo’s 2nd. question was, “…why would he have killed his son had not God intervened?” Actually the answer is similar to the answer to the first question, because God told Him to do so. Now a lot of people think that Isaac was just a kid when all this happened, but think again. Isaac was grown, a young man strong enough to carry the load of wood needed for a fire big and hot enough to burn up the sacrifice. Again, when the time came, nowhere is there any suggestion that Isaac resisted when his father tied him to the altar and raised the knife. God did intervene and provided a substitutionary sacrifice, but that made no difference to Abraham’s expectations because, again, he believed God. God had promised Abraham that that Isaac would carry on the family line, and since Abraham believed God in this matter too, he assumed that if he did actually kill Isaac God would bring him back from the dead. I am not speculating, that this is so is found in the letter to the “Hebrews’ we find this in chapter 11:17—19. [Read it for yourself]

    Now I’ll tell you what all this is about and why Abraham was told to sacrifice Isaac. God knew what Abraham would do, but Abraham didn’t and needed to. We too need to know just how strong Abraham’s faith was and, in our turn, try to emulate him. Finally we can learn, even those who do not have children, how horribly difficult such a thing would be. And might plant the seed in all our minds that this is what God required of Himself and His only begotten Son did not resist, but was obedient to the end, even the cross.

    I’m sure that Suelo knows all this but it seems to me that he has been feeling a bit on the defensive toward the one who calls himself “Watcher on the Mountain” and decided to try to take the offensive by responding to WOTM’s questions by answering with questions of his own. Anyway I don’t hang around here too much, and for good reason, but I decided to take a hand anyway.

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    1. "So-called pious Christians are also unfree. They too lack the authentic certitude of inwardness. That is why they are pious! And the world is surely justified in laughing at them." - Soren Kierkegaard

      William

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    2. "Pious Christians"? "Lack the authentic certitude of inwardness"? Is this lack of inward certitude the reason so many millions of them have been and are continuing to be martyred for refusing to recant their faith and compromise on the truth? Is it the reason most of the hospitals and universities (both in the U.S. and other countries) were founded by Christians? Oh that's right, Christians have no inward certitude about charity, health, education, TRUTH or anything else.

      The only so called piety I have observed in here has come from those who have abandoned Christianity for their own belief systems. They talk about fruits showing what a person really is, but apply it only to Christians, talk about "love," and then judge and condemn anyone who does not do it their way.

      How is it we are so fooled by eloquently endowed men who outwardly proclaim all these pious rules people should follow, but are inwardly very empty beings, projecting their vacuous condition on everyone else?

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  49. Thanks for establishing that the Bible not only justifies the abandonment of a mother and child to fulfill a greater ordained good, in faith that the child will be provided for, despite the thirst and near-death agony of both the mother and child, but that God commands it. The Torah indicates Abraham and Sarah abandoned their slave and child, Ishmael, to the desert not for just 6 years, but for good. And Abraham's willingness to kill his other son is the central act of faith of all 3 Abrahamic religions, according to in Torah, New Testament and the Quran.
    Is my motive ulterior in wanting this established? Is it arrogant or offensive for me to follow Jesus' example and answer your questions with a question so you will answer your own questions by your own wisdom, not mine?

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    1. Watcher, I would be lying if I didn't feel the same aversion you show you feel about Buddha leaving his wife and child for 6 years. And I would be lying if I didn't feel the same aversion about the much harsher Abraham story, and the difficulty of Jesus' telling us to hate family. Is there a human on earth who wouldn't feel the same aversion? Should we spiritualize these stories or take them literally, or should we say there's too much room for hideous abuse and throw them out? Is it evil to confess this, ask this, "prove all things"?

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    2. What you don't seem to get is that all these men are simply men, old fashioned flesh and blood men, even if you call Abraham the Father of Faith. You make it sound as though Abraham is the one who invented faith and the Christian religion. That is not true. He was the first one to be set forth as an illustration of faith in action. God is the One who "devised" Christianity, and it is Christ who is our actual salvation. No evil was found in Him.

      I can name not only Buddha's sins, Gandhi's sins, Joseph Smith's sins, Mohammad's sins, but I can indulge you and name Adam's sins, Isaac's sins, Jacob's sins, and the man whom God said was after His heart, David's sins which are horrendous! Did God set the sins of those men before us as the Way to Him? Absolutely not! But, God, being honest about His people, had the sordid parts of their history recorded along with the good!

      Then WHY should I trust men, any one of them, over God? Give me one good reason! THAT is the point I am trying to make.



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    3. Watcher on the Mountian,

      Do you trust yourself?

      William

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    4. I'm a human, aren't I, William? Then, no, I am not trustworthy either for as far as I don't follow the precepts laid down by God. I have let many people down, said many inopportune things, failed in many responsibilities to God. I would wish it were not so and I could boldly proclaim to others, Follow me! I am perfect and will never lead you astray or let you down!

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    5. Watcher on the Mountain,

      This is the best thing you have wrote so far. It seems like a person pausing to try and take an honest assessment.

      You declare, "I am not trustworthy". Have you ever been what you are calling "trustworthy"? Even for a moment?

      (I am not avoiding your other statements and replies, but am merely trying to pick out something relatively simple to try and establish a point of contact between us. Please do me a favor and make a simple reply from your own thinking.)

      William

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    6. I have been trustworthy and untrustworthy. I am not totally trustworthy, even to myself, because I am not God! Even when I thought I was being trustworthy and doing good, I found out later it was not good for whom the good had been done.

      Therefore, I have tried to base my good on facts, as much as I have the facts. However, what we think are facts are often displaced by more research and actual facts so that the original "facts" either are shown not to be facts or very incomplete and therefore only half of the truth (a half truth).

      The Bible is the only thing that has shown itself to consistently be the truth be consistent with the truth and the proper basis for doing good that will not cause harm.

      Php 2:13 For it is God which works in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

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    7. You see, the Bible lays out the standard and then God provides Himself for the power to fulfill His will as laid out in His Word.

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    8. Watcher on the Mountain,

      What would you say about your first statement, "I am not trustworthy", in light of your newer statement, "I have been trustworthy and untrustworthy"?

      When you use the word "trustworthy", do you know what you mean by it?

      Thank you for making a simple reply from your own thinking.

      William

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    9. Well, if a person cannot be consistently trustworthy, how can you trust them?

      "Trustworthy" means to me that another can put their full trust in the one that is trustworthy. A trustworthy person always does what is right, in all things. Therefore, you can trust every word, every action, and know you can follow that person in everything.

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    10. Watcher on the Mountain,

      You said, "if a person cannot be consistently trustworthy, how can you trust them?" Given that, would you agree with these statements:

      I cannot know for certain whether or not you are being trustworthy.

      You cannot know for certain whether or not I am being trustworthy.

      If you agree with those two statements, do you see why neither of us can be certain of the other?

      My next point - You gave your definition of trustworthy. Do you see that you can say to yourself, "I am certain that is my definition"?

      William

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    11. First of all, William, yes, I gave my definition for "trustworthy." If you prefer, I can give the dictionary definition for "trustworthy."

      trust·wor·thy

      Definition of TRUSTWORTHY
      : worthy of confidence : dependable--a trustworthy guide; trustworthy information


      When communicating with others, it is best to use the definition for terms that best conveys to that audience what you are attempting to say.

      When someone is attempting to understand MY communication, it is best if they are aware of the definitions I use.

      Therefore, I don't think giving the definition I was using in my communication has much to do with being trustworthy in that definition. It has more to do with coming to a mutual understanding of the communication.

      Now if I tell you that I am using a word according to one definition and then proceed to use another definition for it, without telling my audience of the change, I have shown myself to be untrustworthy in communication. I might not be untrustworthy in any other aspect of my life, but I have proven myself to be in this area.

      But you are right. I cannot fully entrust my life and soul into your hands because I know that you, as a mere man, have not nor ever would be able to earn such trust. You would have to prove yourself fully trustworthy in every respect, including having omniscience, omnipresence and omnipotence. Those are attributes belonging only to God.

      You have the same problem entrusting your life and soul to me. I am a mere human and never can be fully trustworthy.



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    12. Watcher on the Mountain,

      I am trying to make a few simple points.

      My first point is - one person cannot directly access another person's mind.

      For example, if you could directly access my mind, you would know whether or not I was telling you the truth and being trustworthy, you would know when I gave one definition for a word I was using and then proceeded to use another definition, etc.

      Do you understand my point? Do you agree with it?

      You might have misunderstood my question about your definition. I wasn't trying to evaluate your definition. I wanted you to ask yourself, "Am I certain this is my definition?" What would your answer be if you asked yourself that question?

      Please keep it simple. Thank you.

      William

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    13. What I agree with is that if I could directly access your mind, I would be able to tell if your motives were to tell the truth or to deceive, or if you were being hypocritical.

      There is a big difference, however, in INTENTION to tell the truth and the actual TRUTH. I could access your mind all day long and KNOW without a shadow of a doubt that you INTENDED to tell the truth and that your behavior always lined up with your words, but if what you are telling does not line up with the FACTS, it is not the truth. THAT is the point I am trying to make.

      You see, I always intend to tell the truth and be trustworthy. I would hope that I AM trustworthy. That is my pure intention.

      However, since none of us knows ALL of the truth at ALL times, none of us can be totally trustworthy. To be totally trustworthy, so that the truth is congruous with my intentions to tell the truth, I would have to be omniscient, omnipresent and omnipotent. In other words, I would have to be GOD.

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    14. So to answer your question. I am not totally certain that is my definition. As far as I know myself and what I meant, it is my definition. It might not be the dictionary definition, but it is what I myself meant when I used that word.

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    15. Watcher on the Mountain,

      [To avoid confusion, let us throw out the dictionary definition for now and only talk about your definition, which was, "'Trustworthy' means to me that another can put their full trust in the one that is trustworthy. Therefore, you can trust every word, every action, and know you can follow that person in everything."]

      I said, "You gave your definition of trustworthy. Do you see that you can say to yourself, 'I am certain that is my definition'?"

      You said, "I am not totally certain that is my definition. As far as I know myself and what I meant, it is my definition. It might not be the dictionary definition, but it is what I myself meant when I used that word."

      What you have said shows your confusion.

      First: This sentence, "I am not totally certain that is my definition" = I am not certain (my definition) is my definition. What? Does that still make sense to you when it is parsed out?

      Second: This sentence, "I am not totally certain that is my definition" is not congruous with "it is what I myself meant when I used that word". You are saying, "I am not certain my definition is my definition, but my definition is my definition".

      From your responses, you don't seem to be understanding me. I will try to be less verbose. Do you have any suggestions?

      I got a late start and will try to reply to your other reply as soon as possible.

      William

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    16. I think it is YOU that is confused...LOL!

      When you rip my sentence out of its context and then change it around by adding words I didn't say, then, of COURSE you can make it sound nonsensical. You can make any statement sound nonsensical by taking it from its context and adding a word or two. SO. Let's try it again.

      Here is my statement, "I am not totally certain THAT is my definition"

      INTERPRETATION: As far as I know myself, I think that definition is what I meant when I was speaking to you.

      COMMENTARY ON INTERPRETATION: I don't like to be dogmatic because I've been wrong many times. I was not purposely wrong, but nevertheless I was wrong.

      I have even been wrong when others have accused me of some wrong and I accepted their accusation as correct. Upon further introspection, I came to the awareness I was not guilty of their accusation.

      Make sense? I'm afraid if we knead this piece of dough long enough, nothing is going to make sense! The piece of dough will have picked up so much debris that it has become a ball of mud. Clear as mud, this conversation...lol.

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    17. Watcher on the Mountain,

      You said, "I think it is YOU that is confused"

      I am very clear in what we are talking about.

      I understand what you are saying -

      You are saying: "I came up with a definition of trustworthy. But, because I have been wrong in the past and can't completely know myself, I cannot be certain that it is my definition."

      Does that sound like I know what you are saying?

      William

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    18. I guess that is close enough. Now are you satisfied? :P

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    19. Watcher on the Mountain,

      You missed my point by reading more into my words than was intended. I showed that I understand what you are saying - I didn't, however, say I agree with you.

      You said: "When you rip my sentence out of its context and then change it around by adding words I didn't say, then, of COURSE you can make it sound nonsensical."

      You are wrong on all accounts. I will try and explain again in another way. If "another can put their trust in the one that is trustworthy" is what you yourself meant when you used that word, it is, by definition, your definition. To then say you are uncertain of whether or not it is your definition shows that you are confused.

      William

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    20. Where did I say you agreed with me? I simply acknowledged that you came close to what I meant.

      Now I'm beginning to wonder again.

      So, brushing all this distraction aside, let's cut to the chase. What is the point you are trying to make?

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    21. Watcher on the Mountain,

      You haven't taken the vitally important step of first understanding reality, and only then taking that understanding and applying it to your reading of the Bible and other such texts. This causes you to posit contradictory and untenable things, etc. For example...

      Since one person cannot directly access another person's mind, this proves that you give meaning to the Bible and everything you posit about it is your own speculation.

      You speak as if you are certain of the Bible's meaning, then declare uncertainty of your own*. You point out that you don't and can't completely know yourself. How well do you know Matthew, Luke...

      Omnipresent generally means present everywhere at the same time. You, however, say God is everywhere...except here, and here, and here... Hence, Suelo asks, "What if omnipresent meant omnipresent?" You want to say God is omnipresent, but, because you don't see God in all things, you are caused to distort the meaning of omnipresent - and we once again get from you more confusion, "God is omnipresent...but not omnipresent". Likewise your "God Himself transforms the heart" argument (cf. my post on Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013 at 1:11:00 PM MST).

      My overall point is your world view does not accord with reality-a paradigm shift is needed.

      *I think this is the lack of "authentic certitude of inwardness" in my Kierkegaard quote.

      William

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    22. WILLIAM: Watcher on the Mountain,

      You haven't taken the vitally important step of first understanding reality, and only then taking that understanding and applying it to your reading of the Bible and other such texts. This causes you to posit contradictory and untenable things, etc. For example...

      ME: Oh? If you can discern that I do not understand reality, the natural inference is that you DO understand reality. How has this understanding given you enlightenment, which it surely must have for you to be able to point out my lack of understanding and perceived confusion.

      WILLIAM: Since one person cannot directly access another person's mind, this proves that you give meaning to the Bible and everything you posit about it is your own speculation.

      ME: Doesn’t the same hold for you? Do you not give meaning to life and everything you posit about it is your own speculation?

      However, William, look at the answer the Bible gives for that: I Corinthians 2: 11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.
      12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.
      13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.
      14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
      15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.
      16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

      WILLIAM: You speak as if you are certain of the Bible's meaning, then declare uncertainty of your own*. You point out that you don't and can't completely know yourself. How well do you know Matthew, Luke...

      ME: I know the Author who inspired Matthew and Luke! See above verses I shared with you.

      WILLIAM: Omnipresent generally means present everywhere at the same time. You, however, say God is everywhere...except here, and here, and here... Hence, Suelo asks, "What if omnipresent meant omnipresent?" You want to say God is omnipresent, but, because you don't see God in all things, you are caused to distort the meaning of omnipresent - and we once again get from you more confusion, "God is omnipresent...but not omnipresent". Likewise your "God Himself transforms the heart" argument (cf. my post on Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013 at 1:11:00 PM MST).

      ME: Is that what I said? How do you arrive at that conclusion? Aren’t you confusing omnipresence with BEING? Because a Person is in and around and part of an object does NOT make that person the object. That seems to be a tenet of logic.

      WILLIAM: My overall point is your world view does not accord with reality-a paradigm shift is needed.

      ME: What is your suggestion?

      WILLIAM: *I think this is the lack of "authentic certitude of inwardness" in my Kierkegaard quote.

      William

      ME: Are you saying that YOU are totally trustworthy? Whatever you should tell me I can take that as ex-cathedra and the truth? Can you verify that for me? What evidence can you give that you are the truth that I can entrust my entire life to?

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    23. Watcher on the Mountain,

      Watcher said: "If you can discern that I do not understand reality"

      All that was needed was for me to know there are not, nor will there ever be, square circles, or other such contradictory things.

      Watcher said: "Doesn't the same hold for you? Do you not give meaning to life and everything you posit about it is your own speculation?"

      Some things are speculation and some things are not speculation. We should be aware of the difference.

      I value the truth.

      What does your 1 Corinthians quote mean?

      Watcher said: "I know the Author who inspired Matthew and Luke!"

      You know the author, yet don't and can't know yourself? And, what about this - Watcher said: "[God] is far beyond us and no one can know His mind or thoughts."

      Watcher said: "Because a Person is in and around and part of an object does NOT make that person the object."

      I agree. Just like a car tire is not the car, or the air around the car is not the car. Are you claiming the "Person" in your example is omnipresent?

      If you posit "God" and "not-God", then "God" cannot be omnipresent, where omnipresent means everywhere at the same time.

      Watcher said: "What is your suggestion?"

      Discern truth for yourself.

      William

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  50. Suelo: Based on your own words, I cannot believe anything but the fact that you are being purposefully obtuse. Without faith it is impossible to please God and you are purposefully twisting God’s word for your own ends. You deny the validity of Abraham’s faith and argue against God’s purposes. Abraham was blessed for his faith, what will your end be? You sound as if you are trying to place yourself on a moral high ground above God Himself. Do you seriously believe that your, so very limited, perspective is superior to that of the Almighty God who created and sustains the entire Universe? How very foolish of you, it seems to me that this is merely a ploy to maintain your own following of equally deluded sycophants.

    As for your friend and supporter “William”, he is equally deluded if he would think that I would be so stupid as to consider any thing Kierkegaard would say. He was basically and man of words, foolish, hollow words and empty reasoning.

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    1. Anonymous,

      Sycophant? Next time you have him out to the cave, put a word in for me with the Governor will you Suelo?

      "As for your friend and supporter" - I have never met Suelo, and I am pretty sure that this is the first time I have written to a thread here.

      Could you consider entertaining the idea that Abraham of the Bible might just be a character, like any other fictional character, and might not have been a real man? Can you entertain that possibility?

      William

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    2. Now we've gotten somewhere! Now you know how a Buddhist feels when you discount all of Buddhism because of his act of leaving wife and child! I have not denounced Abraham or the faith of Abraham, I have not put a spin on anything he did or said, and even let you point it out yourself that the Bible says Abraham was justified in abandoning his concubine and son, and he was justified in attempting to kill Isaac. You know exactly where I'm leading, and you purposefully dodge it with endless distraction. , and I raised 3 questions to get you into the shoes of the Buddhists you accuse with the same thing. You can't take for your own religion what you freely dish out to another.
      From Watcher's first comment on, and from the pastor's proven false witness, I have tried and tried to steer this back to one theme, the Golden Rule, and one question, would you do unto Buddhists what you want Buddhists to do unto you?

      Do you want Buddhists or Muslims to listen to your religion and consider that it could be true? Yes or no?

      Christianity is the Golden Rule. Without the Golden Rule, there is no Christianity, despite endless scripture quoting.

      What if we bring this back to Jesus' words. What would happen if we took Jesus' words for what they say. Or should we "spiritualize" them?

      "And He said to them, 'Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the kingdom of God, who will not receive many times as much at this time and in the age to come, eternal life." (Lk 18:29-30)

      So then, none of you can be my disciple who does not give up all his own possessions.(Lk 14:33)

      "When Jesus heard this, he said to him, 'One thing you still lack; sell all that you possess and distribute it to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.'"
      (Lk 18:22)

      This is the theme of this whole blog, from its first inception.




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    3. Can you give us an example of the "empty reasoning"?

      William

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    4. Sorry to interject here, if you really want an answer from the above Anonymous, but if I may, I would say that "empty reasoning" is reasoning that does not have all the facts.

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  51. By "you" above I mean all who profess to be Christian and condemn other religions.

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  52. Again I ask, Why should I trust any of these sinful men? Can you give me any good reason to? Why should I water down or throw out the Perfect God-Man's Words to incorporate the words of these other sinful men? Why should I let THEM interpret life for me? Especially after finding all I need in Jesus Christ??

    I found the peace that passes understanding by giving up my life to Jesus Christ. I received a joy that cannot be found on earth, by surrendering my life to Him, JUST as He states in the above passages and then clarifies His own Words. I have found forgiveness, cleansing, fulfillment, joy and peace and a sure EXPECTATION in Jesus Christ. WHY, OH WHY give that up to accept something lesser, from mere men of the earth??

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  53. Suelo: my answer to you latest is in two sections the 1st that I'm posting here is actually the end of the comment, that way it'll be second in line and be more readable in its entirety. Hope it's all going to fit.


    My answer to the question regarding convincing or being convinced by Muslims and Buddhists is that, of course I would like all people to come to the knowledge of the gospel, and more, accept it. However, why in the world would I want to consider these false gospels as having any kind of validity with God. Buddha died and was buried, Mohammed died and was buried, all the sages that contributed to the baghman vida have all died and been buried along with those that invented Sikhism and Baha’i, etc., etc., etc. My Lord died too, but He did something that none of the others did. He came back to life, not just to live for a while more, but to live forever. He promised me a share in that new life and I took him up on it. Why should I consider any of the false religions as having any validity at all. This is one of the places where love does NOT equal tolerance and acceptance.

    As far as you leaving all and selling all questions, I really think that you are putting on a spin. I’m sure you know the verse that says that no part of scripture is of any private interpretation. This means that none of the Bible stands alone in how it is to be understood. If you don’t know or have forgotten it is in 2 Pet. 1:20. I do suspect though, that you are deliberately ignoring this fact because, standing alone unsubstantiated or explained by other scriptures is such a powerful weapon for your philosophical sect.

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  54. Suelo: forgive my mispelling of the Hindu texts. I intended to look it up but forgot before it was posted. this is the next part but I do think I got things backward. Hope you can figure it out.

    I really didn’t know what you were talking about here Suelo, I have said very little about Buddha. LOL! LOL! LOL! I finally realized that you, presumptive as you are, assumed that Watcher and I are the same person. He is the one that is railing on you about that abandonment, not me. Take that up with him although I suppose that he is laughing at you too. On the other hand, and satisfying your obsession with the, so called, golden rule, I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you were conserving your energy by addressing both of us at once.

    You are wrong again in your first paragraph, where you assume that I am discounting all of Buddhism on the basis of how he left his wife and child. I discount Buddhism because it is a false religion, or atheistic philosophical system if you will. The fact that it, and all other false religions, etc., might have a sprinkling of truths throughout them does not and never will authenticate them in God’s eyes. The Judea/Christian Bible has been authenticated by God himself in stating that they are indeed ‘theopneustos ‘ and not a collection of folk wisdom the thoughts and ideas of mere mortals. These are of no value because if everyone does what is right in his/her own eyes there can only be evil continually. So, you can bag that idea as far as I am concerned, my dismissal of Buddhism, Islam, and just about any other ‘ism’ you wish to cite, goes far, far deeper than that abandonment.

    Not only this but you are wrong, at least in my eyes when you claim not to have denigrated or put a spin on Abraham’s two major, sins, i.e. Ishmael and Isaac. I think you debased Abraham’s conduct and his faith when you put his actions on the same level with Buddha’s abandonment. Buddha had only his own reasoning to justify his act, Abraham was obeying the command of God. He was not only obeying by trusting that God would be good to His word in that He would take care of things. If Abraham had chosen to disobey God and protect both his sons by his own wisdom would have been a most blatant sin. Furthermore, you seem to be implying that I think that Abraham’s actions were justified. You are so very wrong, the Christian definition of justification basically means that the person’s sins have been eliminated, i.e. they have been made just in God’s eyes, and i.e. they are now righteous before God. What justified Abraham was His faith in the promises of God and because he believed God, neither of these acts was in need of being justified.

    As far as the golden rule is concerned, it is a rephrasing of commandment number two, the second greatest commandment. This, as you probably know, tells us to love our neighbor as ourselves. This is far from being Christianity. And far behind the first and greatest which to love YHWH with all our being. And, of course, that is impossible on our own abilities. Rather, Christianity, the Gospel, the Good News is that God loved us, this is the basis for our love. I don’t know how you define ‘love when you espouse it as the greatest and only needful thing. As you probably know, this love is ‘agapao’ and is used in both the Septuagint and in the N.T. as God’s transcendent love. It is not a wishy, washy tolerance that lets us accept everyone and their behaviors without complaint or admonition. Agapao is not politically correct and is very intolerant of sin as it is described in the Bible. There is tolerance and tolerance. As far as your silly first question, it’s silly because it’s begging the real question. What would God want me to do, to and for Buddhists? This is what I would strive for, not simply a humanistic sort of tit for tat do goodyism. Again I insist that the so called golden rule is simply a restatement of the second commandment. After all, there are nine more, why do you ignore the others?

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  55. In this world hate never dispelled hate.
    Only love dispels hate.
    This is the Law, ancient and inexhaustible.....
    However many scriptures you read,
    however many you speak,
    what good do they do you
    if you do not act upon them?
    Are you a shepherd who counts another person's sheep?"
    --Gautama Buddha (563-483BC) (Dhammapada 1)

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    1. For the whole scripture is fulfilled in One Word: "You shall love your neighbor as yourself."
      But if you bite and devour one another take heed that you are not consumed by one another. (Gal 5:14-15)

      One Word, and no other.


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    2. Everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.
      He who does not love does not know God,
      for God is love. (1 John 4:7-8)

      If someone says, "I love God," and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?
      (1 John 4:20)

      Delete
  56. And then God gives us a blueprint for LOVE:

    I Corinthians 13: 1 ¶ Though I SPEAK WITH THE TONGUES OF MEN AND OF ANGELS, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.

    2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and UNDERSTAND ALL MYSTERIES, and all knowledge; and though I HAVE ALL FAITH, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.

    3 And THOUGH I BESTOW ALL MY GOODS TO FEED THE POOR, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.

    4 ¶ Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

    5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;

    6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;


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  57. 7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.


    BEARETH: στέγω

    1) deck, thatch, to cover
    1a) to protect or keep by covering, to preserve
    2) to cover over with silence
    2a) to keep secret
    2b) to hide, conceal
    2b1) of the errors and faults of others
    3) by covering to keep off something which threatens, to bear up against, hold out against, and so endure, bear, forbear


    BELIEVETH: πιστεύω

    1) to think to be true, to be persuaded of, to credit, place confidence in
    1a) of the thing believed
    1a1) to credit, have confidence
    1b) in a moral or religious reference
    1b1) used in the NT of the conviction and trust to which a man is impelled by a certain inner and higher prerogative and law of soul
    1b2) to trust in Jesus or God as able to aid either in obtaining or in doing something: saving faith
    1bc) mere acknowledgment of some fact or event: intellectual faith
    2) to entrust a thing to one, i.e. his fidelity


    HOPETH: ἐλπίζω

    1) to hope
    1a) in a religious sense, to wait for salvation with joy and full confidence
    2) hopefully to trust in


    ENDURETH: ὑπομένω

    1) to remain
    1a) to tarry behind
    2) to remain i.e. abide, not recede or flee
    2a) to preserve: under misfortunes and trials to hold fast to one’s faith in Christ
    2b) to endure, bear bravely and calmly: ill treatments

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  58. Can one know love without a written blueprint, who doesn't yet know language or Bible?
    Can an infant know love?
    Does a "Gentile" who has never heard of the Bible have the law written on the heart?
    Did love exist before Moses ever wrote a word, before Abraham?
    Is the Word a living Being who existed before human thought or language or books?
    Or is the Word an image engraved in stone or ink on paper, a graven image to bow down to?
    Is the Word a Letter, which kills, or Spirit, which gives life?
    What if omnipresent meant omnipresent?
    If Love is Omnipresent, can any one religion have a monopoly on it?
    Did love stop living, stop revealing herself, when the last letter of the Bible was written? Did God die?
    Is love the same, yesterday, today, and forever?
    Can written or spoken language be preached to every creature (ktisis: literally, 'created thing')?

    Is spoken language Omnipresent?

    Only that which is Omnipresent can I trust, only the Law written on the heart, when all words, all mind, all prophecies, all beliefs, all creeds, all ego, all bibles, fail.

    Doesn't your own experience show you that everything which eye sees, ear hears, and has ever entered the human mind fails?

    Everything, including my words & this blog?

    "Why do you not judge for yourselves what is right?" (--Jesus, Luke 12:57)

    "The word that can be spoken is not the Eternal Word." (Tao Te Ching 1)

    ReplyDelete
  59. SUELO: Can one know love without a written blueprint, who doesn't yet know language or Bible?

    ME: We can learn the filial kind of love that God created in His creatures. We cannot know the love of God unless He reveals it to us and cannot recognize or understand it unless filial love has been taught us through our experiences and the words that interpret it.

    SUELO: Can an infant know love?

    ME: An infant LEARNS filial love by his/her parents. Woe to that infant who is not raised in filial love. Life is very difficult for that child thereafter. Animals that have not been raised with maternal love are most likely not going to be able to raise their own young with affection or care. Chickens raised by incubator do not know how to set (lay on their eggs), so they leave them to die. This indicates that setting is a learned behavior.


    SUELO: Does a "Gentile" who has never heard of the Bible have the law written on the heart?

    ME: We are all born with a conscience, but the Bible makes it clear that we can ignore it by doing what is right in our own eyes and sear and harden our consciences and hearts.

    I Timothy 4: 1 ¶ Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
    2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;

    Heb 3:8 Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness:
    Heb 3:15 While it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation.
    Heb 4:7 Again, he limiteth a certain day, saying in David, To day, after so long a time; as it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts.
    Ex 14:4 And I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, that he shall follow after them; and I will be honoured upon Pharaoh, and upon all his host; that the Egyptians may know that I am the LORD. And they did so.



    SUELO: Did love exist before Moses ever wrote a word, before Abraham?

    ME: Yes, because God has existed from eternity to eternity and He has the attribute of Love in Himself, Therefore love has existed for eternity. But who can find God unless He reveals Himself to us? He is far beyond us and no one can know His mind or thoughts.
    Job 40:2 Shall he that contendeth with the Almighty instruct him? he that reproveth God, let him answer it.
    Ro 11:34 For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor?



    SUELO: Is the Word a living Being who existed before human thought or language or books?

    ME: The Word is both Jesus Christ and also the words God gave to His people to write down, as the Scriptures make clear and was demonstrated before. Those words flowed from God Himself and have been preserved down through the millennium, for us. They, of course, point to the Living Word, Jesus Christ.

    ReplyDelete
  60. SUELO: Or is the Word an image engraved in stone or ink on paper, a graven image to bow down to?

    ME: Who is bowing down to their Bibles to worship paper and leather?? Who of anyone you or I know thinks their Bible is a god? Please give me one instance! If you cannot, then you are making a false accusation, again. Just as a sweetheart honors, with attention and understanding, the words of her lover written down on paper or spoken to her, so we honor the words God has given to us to reveal Himself as our lover, and His will to us His sweetheart. Even you yourself tell us LISTENING to others indicates our love for them! Then you post the words of earthly men that you want us to listen to. Yet you tell us that listening to God is idolatry??

    You are presenting a scenario God never used. Isn’t that teaching your own laws for God’s, making His own of no effect??
    Matthew 15: 9 But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

    All through the Scriptures we are admonished to give heed to the written words of God and to meditate on them day and night! Our conducts flows from we think about and actually believe. When you change your mind, it changes your behavior. Therefore a person’s life is transformed by renewing their mind, that is, by exchanging false information for what is true.

    Ro 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

    You would have to take the scissors to a major portion of the Bible to deny that we are to give heed to the WRITTEN Word of God. It seems that this is precisely what you have done by changing its meaning to make up a new law.



    SUELO: Is the Word a Letter, which kills, or Spirit, which gives life?

    ME: It is a Letter which the Spirit makes alive to our spirits and never contradicts!

    1Co 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
    Joh 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have SAID unto you.



    SUELO: What if omnipresent meant omnipresent?

    ME: Yes, God is omnipresent. What of it? Are you saying that because God is omnipresent He is also everything and not separate from His creation? How did you arrive at that??


    SUELO: If Love is Omnipresent, can any one religion have a monopoly on it?

    ME: NO. GOD has a monopoly on Love.
    Love is not omnipresent. It does not have substance as a being does. It is an ATTRIBUTE of God. I have attributes that make up who is ME, but they are not me, any more than I am a hill of dirt because my body is made up of the elements of dirt.

    All who have given their lives to Jesus Christ, have His special manifesting presence available to them. Christ, who dwells in every believer, makes His life available to each one, as they yield to Him.



    ReplyDelete
  61. SUELO: Did love stop living, stop revealing herself, when the last letter of the Bible was written? Did God die?

    ME: You are also confusing the Bible with love. The Bible is not love, nor can it be. I am not love, nor can I ever be. Religion is not love, nor can it be. God is love in that love is an essential component of His character, but it is not something of substance or sentience and so is not in that respect
    God Himself.



    SUELO: Is love the same, yesterday, today, and forever?

    ME: No. Love manifests itself in various ways and by various means. God, in substance and attributes, is the same yesterday, today and forever, because He is God.


    SUELO: Can written or spoken language be preached to every creature (ktisis: literally, 'created thing')?

    ME: Yes. They might not understand the words, but the words, can nevertheless be spoken to them. But which of the definitions for “creature” in the following verses do you have in mind?

    Mk.10:6; 13:19; Rom.1:20; Rom.1:25; 8:19 –22; 8:39; Heb.14:13; 2 Pet.3:4 – Creation as a whole

    Mk.16:15 – Every creature

    2 Cor.5:17; Gal.6:15 – New life in Christ.

    Col.1:15 – Firstborn

    Col.1:23 – Gospel to every creature

    Heb.9:11 – Physical Temple in Jerusalem

    1 Pet.2:13 – Rule of law

    Rev.3:14 – Our Lord Himself as the ruler over all, as the originator of the creation of God.







    SUELO: Is spoken language Omnipresent?

    ME: Of course not. Only God is omnipresent.

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  62. SUELO: Only that which is Omnipresent can I trust, only the Law written on the heart, when all words, all mind, all prophecies, all beliefs, all creeds, all ego, all bibles, fail.

    ME: The Law is not omnipresent either. Only God is. It is wise that you trust only God, for “let God be true and every man a liar.”
    Nu 23:19 God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?
    Did you notice the difference made between the speaking and the doing? In a holy God the speaking and the doing never contradict. In the fallible human being, there will never fail to be a measure of hypocrisy or dissonance between our words and our deeds. Therefore, it is utter foolishness to set up any man or men as a prototype for our own lives.

    2Co 10:12 For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.

    SUELO: Doesn't your own experience show you that everything which eye sees, ear hears, and has ever entered the human mind fails?

    ME: Yes, including watching someone and mistaking what they are doing, for love. We are fooled all the time, the shrewdest of us. If this were not so, the most tyrannical of despots would not have been given the opportunity to set themselves over us!



    SUELO: Everything, including my words & this blog?

    ME: Everything but God Himself.



    SUELO: "Why do you not judge for yourselves what is right?" (--Jesus, Luke 12:57)

    ME: Let’s look at the context of that verse! Luke 12: 54 ¶ And he said also to the people, When ye see a cloud rise out of the west, straightway ye say, There cometh a shower; and so it is.
    55 And when ye see the south wind blow, ye say, There will be heat; and it cometh to pass.
    56 Ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky and of the earth; but how is it that ye do not discern this time
    57 Yea, and why even of yourselves judge ye not what is right?

    The final verse is a question. How is it you do not discern this time? Why can’t you judge what is right? They could NOT discern the spiritual happenings going on and even lost the ability to judge what was right! Why? They had all the Scriptures before them to give wisdom, and now even Jesus Christ Himself standing before them! They had the entire Old Testament that had foretold the Christ, but they did not recognize Him or any of the signs of His coming!
    What has happened when you have the truth sitting in front of you and you are blind to it? You have hardened your heart against it. I believe that is the answer Christ was bringing them to.

    Every man doing what is right in their own eyes is clearly condemned in the Scriptures.

    De 12:8 Ye shall not do after all the things that we do here this day, every man whatsoever is right in his own eyes.
    Jud 17:6 In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes.
    Jud 21:25 In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.
    Pr 12:15 The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise.
    Pr 21:2 Every way of a man is right in his own eyes: but the LORD pondereth the hearts.


    SUELO: "The word that can be spoken is not the Eternal Word." (Tao Te Ching 1)

    ME: Again, promoting the mere words of, Lao-tzu, a fallible, earthly man, as a protocol for life? WHY? Why is heeding this writing not idolatry but reading and heeding the Bible is idolatry??

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  63. YOU: "They could NOT discern the spiritual happenings going on and even lost the ability to judge what was right! Why? They had all the Scriptures before them to give wisdom, and now even Jesus Christ Himself standing before them! They had the entire Old Testament that had foretold the Christ, but they did not recognize Him or any of the signs of His coming!
    What has happened when you have the truth sitting in front of you and you are blind to it? You have hardened your heart against it. I believe that is the answer Christ was bringing them to."
    ME: I agree.

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    Replies
    1. I might rejoice in our agreement, but I perceive that it is a false agreement. You are agreeing with the definitions you have imposed on these passages. I cannot agree with your definitions.

      Delete
  64. William: I've been following, at a distance, your converstion with "Watcher on the Mount". I think that you are either deliberately obfuscating your replies or, you are so muddle minded you cannot understand what she is saying. If you cannot do better than your record you might as well quit. Watcher has obviously won this one on points, if nothing else. By nothing else I mean his attempts to enlighten you to reality.

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous,

      I value the truth and am therefore glad to hear of my own errors. If you see that I have said something false or am mistaken in some way, please point it out.

      What is your name?

      William

      Delete
  65. I am so happy to see recent writings on your views on the Divine Feminine! I just finished The Man Who Quite Money and found it to be a remarkable book. I hope you will write more about this!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Trista. It could be another book in itself. If She's willing, She will provide a way for it all to be done for free.

      Delete
  66. Its not money that makes you happy. It's the people around you and the wonderful world that we will in today that makes us happy. Great article :)

    ReplyDelete