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#27726 - 09/14/08 03:03 AM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: samwik]
Tutor Turtle Offline
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Quote:
I find focusing on "thoughts ...attuned to God or the absolute" is a way to quiet the mind "cluttered with thoughts" and again know and feel the connection with....

Prayer or meditation is a form of thought but not all thoughts lead to the experience of the absolute, and not all prayer is communion with God.
The TM group did some scientific research in conjunction with meditation and Abraham Maslow's "Peak experience."
They found that what Maharishi Mahesh Yogi explained within the mechanics of meditation was clearly experienced and substantiated by scientific measurement.
Using tools or keys to engage the deeper parts of the left and right hemisphere of the brain, brought the two halves into coherence where there was non during normal activity while awake.
Aligning the left and right hemisphere of the brain allowed the mind to settle into stillness and also gave the body a chance to relax even more than during normal sleep.
There are valid tools of meditation which are born of this natural inward direction to turn the mind inward and allow the body to rest and throw off stress.
Basically there are two ways to approach meditation successfully. Using a tool that expands the intellect and removes stress from the nervous system, and competent guidance from someone who has mastered the tools and can guide another toward their own experience of the absolute/God.
The Upanishads quote a rule. "Read scripture (words of the enlightened), meditate using a proven method, and surround yourself with enlightened company."

Some thoughts create expansion but then not all of them create permanent expansion. We experience this when we are happy due to certain thoughts but then when the thought is removed and an opposing thought is introduced the happiness goes with the happy thought.
Meditation should permanently expand the intellect and cleanse the nervous system of stress rather than act as an escape from stress and contraction of the mind due to the nature of stress related beliefs and ideas.

Once the intellect is expanded and stress removed from the nervous system the subtleties of the absolute become vibrant and the intuitive parts of the brain and nervous system become clear.
Quote:

But what about the car?
I get my kids to try out the pedals and gearshift, and steering wheel (but not with the car running).
And I talk to them about what I'm doing (and why) as I'm driving sometimes.
I hope this'll help when they start driving a car themselves.

More so than having them think about it and from their own ideas about what it is like.
Always the sensible approach is not to reinvent the wheel but to get to know the person who has mastered the process and have them teach you.
We use this example in every learning institution on the planet, but very few use this approach when it comes to God. Because the ego cannot surrender itself to something it cannot grasp within the boundaries of the egoic intellect, trying to invent God from the surface of the mind is less successful than inventing a wheel.
The outside world and the physical boundaries are easily grasped in mechanical redundancy of habit, and we do not have to learn to intuit how these processes work if we give ourselves to the authority of mastery that make themselves available by our own prescribed rules and ideas.
But something that lives outside limitation or personality and the boundaries of rules and ideas, as well as in them cannot so easily be contained by the surface of the mind and the 50-60,000 thoughts that are born of habit and egoic limitation.
It takes a greater initiative and deeper level of thought to engage the absolute and to make it a permanent part of ones awareness, and then with a direct experience of God comes the ability to surrender to it or become One with it. This is the approach to the atonement or as it has been coined by the new age the at-one-ment.
People try with drugs to alter the mind but it only gives them impetus to bolster their beliefs that there is something beyond what escapes them in the conscious state of awareness when they are seeking something greater.

There is a saying, "When the student is ready the Teacher will appear."
_________________________
I was addicted to the Hokey Pokey, but then I turned myself around!!





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#27727 - 09/14/08 03:20 AM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: samwik]
Revlgking Offline
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Quote:
I find focusing on "thoughts ...attuned to God or the absolute" is a way to quiet the mind "cluttered with thoughts" and again know and feel the connection with....
Sam, by now you are no doubt aware that I like the way you approach the god-concept.

The only difference, it seems, is that I write the concept using the acronym, GOD. It helps me--I speak only for myself--avoid thinking of the creator as having any kind of mass, form and content. This is not unlike the approach of Buddhism--a non-theistic religion.

I have found that most so-called atheists do not deny what I call GOD. They are not against the idea that there is more to the universe than can be perceived by the senses.

When I really get the opportunity to have a good dialogue with them and can get across what I mean when I say "GOD" what I hear is this: "What I cannot accept is the idea that there is a God, or gods, with the power to will, act and do things as if He is a rational and loving being who created and is in control of the universe and all of the space-time continuum."

They are usually quite relieved when I say, "As a unitheist who believe in rational kind of spirituality, Neither do I. Spirituality does not require anyone to have a blind faith, or religion." Then things really open up and real dialogue begins.

Interestingly, the great inventor, Nicola Tesla, a Christian, advocated combining Christianity and Buddhism.


Edited by Revlgking (09/14/08 04:26 AM)
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#27729 - 09/14/08 12:01 PM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Revlgking]
Revlgking Offline
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MOST ATHEISTS ARE JUST NON-THEISTS
==================================
As I have indicated above: I have found that when I have the opportunity to have an honest, open and transparent dialogue with rational people who say, "I am an atheist" I find that they do not deny what I call GOD.

Just recently, I met and had a long conversation with a person who told me he is an atheist. He is Don B--a former active member of the United Church of Canada, the church in which I was raised.

Don is a lawyer, and a public trustee. We are both involved in helping a senior who is going through a very trying time in afamily-court case involving finances and property. After many weeks trying to sort this out I am convinced that our client is the victim of much abuse.

My role is that of a volunteer on behalf of the Family Life Foundation. I have agreed to act, without a fee, as a mediator for the senior, who finds it very difficult to communicate what is happening to him. We have found that in this case our mutual client has been, and is, his own worse enemy. He is such a soft, trusting and easily-manipulated type that he has allowed himself to fall into a serious problem and is in danger of losing all his assets.

By the way, unlike the other turf-protecting and shark-like lawyers involved on both sides, Don welcomes my participation. When we got to talking about spiritual matters I found him to be a very rational, humane and caring human being with a deep moral and ethical concern for people.

When he told me that he is an atheist I asked him to describe for me the god-concept in which he was raised and now rejects. As I suspected: The theism in which he was raised was the one I rejected decades ago. Even as a student of theology I rejected what I now call the folk theism held by well meaning many folk theists. In my opinion, much of the theology of folk theism is just a pile of superstition--beliefs based on the blind kind of faith.

By the way, years ago I said "fair well" to this kind of blind faith: Interestingly, in my library I have the book, FAREWELL To God, a book by the late the Rev. Charles B. Templeton--a former evalgelist--who I knew very well and conversed with, more than once, before he died at 85.
This will put you in the picture:
http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2001/06/07/templeton_010607.html
http://www.tektonics.org/books/templefarervw.html
To the end, despite his "atheism", Chuck, as he was fondly known, was a devout believer in the essential message of Jesus--LOVE, EVEN YOUR ENEMIES.
[More on this story]



Edited by Revlgking (09/14/08 01:42 PM)

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#27762 - 09/16/08 12:40 AM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Revlgking]
Anonymous
Unregistered


Rev wrote
I have found that when I have the opportunity to have an honest, open and transparent dialogue with rational people who say, "I am an atheist" I find that they do not deny what I call GOD.

It's all a matter of defining your terms is it?

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#27763 - 09/16/08 12:44 AM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Anonymous]
Ellis Offline
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That was me... Ellis... I have been in computer wasteland due to the hard drive dying and having to be replaced. It's working now though!

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#27764 - 09/16/08 01:57 AM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Ellis]
Revlgking Offline
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Ellis, you answered the question I just asked myself, recently: I wonder what happened to Ellis?

Welcome back to the dialogue.


Edited by Revlgking (09/16/08 01:57 AM)

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#27768 - 09/16/08 04:22 PM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Tutor Turtle]
samwik Offline
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Good points Revl,
~be back later....
===

&
Originally Posted By: Tutor Turtle
Once the intellect is expanded and stress removed from the nervous system the subtleties of the absolute become vibrant and the intuitive parts of the brain and nervous system become clear.

Thanks TT,
...and your other points...
remind me of a tidbit I jotted down last year [from some Jesuit conference ("Chance or Purpose" perhaps?)]:

"Logical reasoning can lead us to know there is a way to know God; but not to know God."

~ smile
_________________________
Pyrolysis creates reduced carbon! ...Time for the next step in our evolutionary symbiosis with fire.

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#27769 - 09/16/08 04:38 PM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: samwik]
Tutor Turtle Offline
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Originally Posted By: samwik


Thanks TT,
...and your other points...
remind me of a tidbit I jotted down last year [from some Jesuit conference ("Chance or Purpose" perhaps?)]:

"Logical reasoning can lead us to know there is a way to know God; but not to know God."

~ smile


Logic isn't always clear.
If driven by the ego the point of reference is in personal beliefs and does not allow for objective reasoning.
_________________________
I was addicted to the Hokey Pokey, but then I turned myself around!!





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#27771 - 09/17/08 02:38 AM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: samwik]
Revlgking Offline
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Originally Posted By: samwik
Good points Revl,
~be back later....
Keep in mind I have no quarrel with theists who have no problem believing in God, as a personal being who gives meaning and purpose to their lives, purely on the basis of faith.

Theists an deists: Please understand that with the way my brain is wired, I have a problem thinking of God as a person, but I keep an open mind. Therefore, I can understand what makes some of us atheists, or agnostics.

For me--and I admit that I could be proved wrong: Unitheism--the idea that GOD, as the infinite and eternal NOW, or The Presence, is in and through all that is, including your person and mine--makes a lot of sense to me. Until something better comes along, here is the theological basis in which I believe and upon which I will act.

Moment by moment, and day by day, I make practical use of this concept. It helps me deal with life physically, mentally and spiritually.

Atheists and agnostics: Feel free to be part of this dialogue. As a unitheist I am not here to judge you, and I feel that most theists feel the same way.

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#27772 - 09/17/08 05:26 AM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Revlgking]
Ellis Offline
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So, is the discussion saying that the concept of whatever we individually perceive as god is the result of logical thought...even if that logical thought has proceeded by elimination to the stage where all that remains belongs to god? That in fact it is possible to deduce thjat god exists (in whatever form) by logical reasoning?

I would find it difficult to assume that such faith or belief is the result of logical deduction. The whole point is that logical argument depends upon proof. There is, and never has been, proof that that which people define as 'god' exists. That very irrationality is why faith is so strong. Belief is based on conviction, personal knowledge and understanding and emotional need and certainty-- but not logic. There is no logic in the behavioural conduct of faithful believers in a doctrine that is impossible to verify as the truth, to which they steadfastly hold.

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#27774 - 09/17/08 12:04 PM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Ellis]
Revlgking Offline
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Quote:
So, is the discussion saying that the concept of whatever we individually perceive as god is the result of logical thought...
IMO, this is a place for anyone to say: Here is what I believe. And I am willing to dialogue about it. Also, I am willing to dialogue with you as to the logic, or otherwise, of what you believe. It is also okay for us to change our minds.

THIS COULD BE INTERESTING: For those who want to debate that they are right and others are wrong: May I suggest that we could set up a panel to judge who wins. I would be very interested in hearing the "proofs" for the existence of gods, or God.


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#27775 - 09/17/08 03:18 PM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Revlgking]
Revlgking Offline
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Quote:
I would find it difficult to assume that such faith or belief is the result of logical deduction.
Ellis, what is illogical about one having faith, even one that may prove to be wrong?

It seems to me that having a sighted-faith--one based on a rational foundation and the scientific method--is very logical indeed.

Adam Smith--the founder of classical economics--defined logic as, "the science of general principles of good and bad reasoning." Surely the man who believed in the "invisible Hand" had to be a man of some kind of faith. Obviously not a theocrat, he advocated pluralism and moderation.

http://www.adamsmithslostlegacy.com/2008/02/adam-smith-on-religous-institutions.html
Excellent article:
http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200803/evangelicals
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#27776 - 09/17/08 03:34 PM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Revlgking]
Revlgking Offline
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THIS IS INTERESTING, and I agree with the thesis:State of the Union January/February 2005 Atlantic

The real religious divide in the United States isn't between the churched and the unchurched. It's between different kinds of believers, by Hanna Rosin

http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200501/rosin
_________________________
G~O~D--Now & ForeverIS:Nature, Nurture & PNEUMA-ture, Thanks to Warren Farr&ME AT www.unitheist.org

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#27777 - 09/17/08 04:29 PM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Revlgking]
Tutor Turtle Offline
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Quote:
Ellis, what is illogical about one having faith, even one that may prove to be wrong?

I'll answer that..
Faith can be applied to anything. If you are such a proponent for symbolizing God that is not a person or a thing, and someone you engage believes he/she knows God as a person or thing, everything you say in regards to show me the proof will be met with something that has or has not a logical reasoning. If that logical/illogical reasoning fails to produce proof but bears the reflection of belief, and belief divides humanity into factions that begin to fight with each other, then faith becomes an illusion rather than something applied to an actual experience or a Universal reality.
Quote:

It seems to me that having a sighted-faith--one based on a rational foundation and the scientific method--is very logical indeed.
And if you apply that to the first statement you have just answered the question in a logical way. However mainstream science doesn't substantiate a universal God of any kind and Religious or spiritual science base their logic on the personal experience of God, the repeatability of states of consciousness, and the awareness of God at those levels of consciousness. This cannot be proven to an individual who has no experience but can be applied through the mechanics of the approach to lead one without experience to experience. Then the logic is that the burden of proof is laid upon those who wish to see for themselves rather than those who have already experienced God.
This then becomes the highest choice of humanity, to find God through free will.
Faith then is sighted when there is experience of universal law or principal or the experience of that experience such as having engaged a Saint or Son of God as is written of in scripture.
Quote:

The real religious divide in the United States isn't between the churched and the unchurched. It's between different kinds of believers
That'd be ego primarily. substantiating the reality that faith individualized into personal beliefs that are divided and separate from God and yet idealized as directed toward God (especially a personalized God), are applied to personal illusions rather than universal Truth.
_________________________
I was addicted to the Hokey Pokey, but then I turned myself around!!





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#27780 - 09/17/08 11:23 PM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Tutor Turtle]
Revlgking Offline
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Now, TT, tell us about your personal religious faith. Is it a logical one for you? And how, on a daily basis, does it affect the way you earn your living and spend it in the community--your concept of stewardship?






Edited by Revlgking (09/17/08 11:30 PM)

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#27782 - 09/18/08 12:42 AM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Revlgking]
Ellis Offline
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It is not wrong to base belief on illogical reasoning. It is, however, risky to assume that others will give the same degree of verity to the conclusions reached.

TT makes some very interesting points, especially the suggestion that the burden of proof for the existence of god is one that is easier to agree with if the person has already had experience of something that could be described by them as evidence of god. If belief in god is a desirable aim for someone then I suggest it will be easier for that person to make a free (whether true belief can ever be the result of coersion is another topic!) declaration of belief. Faith is a personal decision. If faith/belief is there then god (in the various manifold manifestations) will exist for that individual.

I do not think that "relgious division " has much to do with god and much more to do with all too human ego and illusion. (Similar to TT).

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#27786 - 09/18/08 07:21 AM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Revlgking]
Tutor Turtle Offline
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Originally Posted By: Revlgking
Now, TT, tell us about your personal religious faith. Is it a logical one for you?

What I have faith in is beyond the personal, though it is personally experienced, beyond religious confinement of belief tho I have beliefs that include it, and intellectually it doesn't matter whether I agree or disagree with it, it still remains for it exceeds the logic of the mind that must confine itself to rules and boundaries.

I can only surrender to it.

Originally Posted By: Revlgking
And how, on a daily basis, does it affect the way you earn your living and spend it in the community--your concept of stewardship?

How it affects the way I earn my living is that I don't fear lack, I don't struggle for money, I work when I want to, and what little money I make personally takes care of the little things I need to be of service to humanity.
Now, stewardship and service to humanity is not something I need worry about. Such ideas derived from personal belief often fail to understand the nature of God.
I find I'm where I need to be when I need to be there, and so is anything of value that I have to offer.
Money having the least value, I find what I have to give to bring one to their own experience of themselves and their creative power in the world as the only thing any man/woman can give that has value. Therefor what I do on a daily basis does not require me to earn a living but to live life to its fullest in comprehension of reality.
That creates an energetic that exceeds all relative wealth because it resonates outward into the world, and affects everything of permanence within humanity, whereas money only temporarily sustains that which is impermanent.

Stewardship is very much attached to religion and politics. It is twisted, judged, misunderstood, chased after in illusions of belief and ideals that to this day have failed to control the nature of human spiritual evolution, or change free will.
Each person must find their own experience of reality and relationship with the absolute. Only one who knows what is inside another man can make themselves available to assist them in their own self discovery. Anything else is a projection of selfish desire and delusion.
Only a man who is one with God and nature can be of assistance to another. Until one knows the Self they cannot know God or human destiny. And if one does not know the nature of ones Self they are unable to help themselves let alone be a steward for their community.
_________________________
I was addicted to the Hokey Pokey, but then I turned myself around!!





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#27790 - 09/18/08 12:13 PM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Tutor Turtle]
Revlgking Offline
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Quote:
Money having the least value, I find what I have to give to bring one to their own experience of themselves and their creative power in the world as the only thing any man/woman can give that has value....
I was an active UCC minister (1953-1994, Labrador, NL, New Brunswick, Montreal, Toronto) for over 40 years.

From the beginning, I believed in doing gospel as well as teaching/preaching it. Because of this I got involved in the lives of many people--and I am still doing it, in my re-directment period (BTW, I don't like the term, 'retire')

Yes, I spoke--and I still do speak--to people about the need to tap in to their own creative power. Over the decades many thousands responded positively to this message, which I gave not just from the pulpit and to my congregations.

I also gave it to many non-church members who attended the on-going lecture series under the general heading PNEUMATOLOGY--The study of the spirit (pneuma) while including the mind (psyche) and the body (soma). In this series I was helped medical doctors, psychologists, nutritionists and others interested in the healing of the whole person,

However, I found that a certain number of people, especially those who lived on the streets, were too physically, mentally and spiritually ill to take in, let alone act on, any kind of deep kind of soma-psycho-pneumatology.

With Matthew 25: 31-46 in mind, I was inspired to see that they needed a hand out well before they were in any condition to accept a hand up. Many responded well.

But many--no-doubt life-damaged souls--were just takers and had no idea of what it means to work in family and community. And there were those who acted as though they didn't even want to help themselves, let alone anyone else. I could write a long book on my experiences with the needy, of all kinds. I learned this hard lesson, early.

How do you, TT--Or anyone--respond to what Jesus says in Matthew?


Edited by Revlgking (09/18/08 02:38 PM)

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#27791 - 09/18/08 05:25 PM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Revlgking]
Tutor Turtle Offline
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If you read all of Matthew 25 it gives a clearer picture of karmic law.
Based on what talents or what karmic energies are stored within the field of time and space surrounding ones free will and choice determines the extent of ones direction toward spiritual union.

The meat, drink, clothing, all represent spiritual energies rather than physical food, clothing and drink. Obviously within the duality of time and space either reality of the unmanifest or manifest is reflected in the soul of man and what man is able to give determines what they have.
One who is neither rich in spirit or rich in material wealth is capable of giving anything of value to either kingdom.
The Kingdom of God which is idealized within the scripture of Matthew is not the material kingdom and it has no use for material things. What has value in the spiritual Kingdom is spiritual wealth, or the knowledge and experience of free flowing energy that is God energy.
The ego which confines itself to the material kingdom idealizes everything that supports the material body in comfort and in sensory fullness. That is of a personal nature and not of a universal nature. The material world comes and goes and is impermanent while the soul and the spiritual world exist always within the changing material worlds.
The coming of the groom symbolizes the awakening or being born again, within an incarnation of human life that is cumulative to the awareness of the Spirit within all things and the living from spirit rather than living from ego. Or being Christed as Jesus spoke of when he stated that he(the manifest) and the Father(unmanifest) were One.

So what one gives another man symbolizes the level of consciousness one lives in. If ones life is spent swirling in the level of the temporary physical world, one can only give to another what will temporarily satisfy the senses of the ego.
If one lives from spirit and gives what they can in food, clothing and drink for the soul, and nourishes the soul with God.

The symbolism of paragraph 30 And cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. represents the soul wrapped in karmic debt in the timelessness experienced in death. Which then can see what it has misconstrued as important in the physical life only to lose it all in death and then experience something far greater when the spirit is temporarily loosened from the grips of the ego. Being drawn toward the earthlife again it suffers the temporary awakening only to lose it again in the new life that it is born into losing all memory of the experience between life and of any previous lifetimes.

29 For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath.

This is what being born in sin refers to, in being born of karmic energetics based on the choices one has made in the lifetimes previous to the one they are in.


41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:

This is not an endless cycle created by some domineering entity bent on subservience but by the free will of each human soul which is divinely endeared with the ability to create around them what they will based on what they deem as real.
The devil in paragraph 41 refers to the ego and its idea of eternal glory which is in reality the suffering of duality and separation of God. For the ego this is real and eternal, and it is also illusion and ignorance.

And so those who will steer their attention to the suffering of the material world and from their belief in the reality of the world around them will draw from the illusion to feed and support the illusion until such a time that they decide to do something different, and this can last for thousands of lifetimes.
When that time comes they might get a glimpse of a greater reality, much more expanded than the temporary illusions created in the suffering of ignorance and of the creative power of the soul that is beyond the ego. Then when the son of man accumulates knowledge and wealth of the spirit he becomes Christed and the Son of God.

That man by his very nature can only Give of God for he and his Father are one.
_________________________
I was addicted to the Hokey Pokey, but then I turned myself around!!





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#27792 - 09/18/08 11:23 PM Re: Philosophy of religion: Yours, MIne and Ours.. [Re: Tutor Turtle]
Ellis Offline
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That made interesting reading TT. I wholeheartedly agree with you with the concept that through free choice son of 'man' becomes Son of God. However there is the posibility that such a choice, freely made, leads not to a belief in god ( however god is seen) but to the knowledge that 'god' does not exist. Cannot the realities of atheism have as much validity as the illusions created by belief?

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