A voicehearer’s path ~

Posts tagged ‘God’

Reality, Is there a God?

jesus_teaching_2I happen to believe that “God” is very real. I also believe that this God wants us to be happy and good to one another. Much beyond that, and it gets murky. I have had personal experiences with Spirit in my life that have convinced me of the reality of a “Higher Power” in the universe. I cannot tell you that you must believe, or even what to believe, you are responsible for your own thoughts on this.

I have come to believe that, though the scholars may be right, and the stories of a Christ may be twisted and suborned, there are kernels of truth in the gospels. Not of a human that was a God, but, rather, a human teacher that was enlightened and taught a better way for us to live. Yes, I am aware that he is quoted to have said some things that are just simply not supportable by a human. I believe those things were added into the story by those who wrote the legends many years after this rabbi lived.

In fact, it is because of all the controversy that I am going to share with you my base for the beliefset I hold. I must admit that when I first became aware that there were no notes and documents from the time in which the rabbi lived, my head was spinning. Had I put my faith in a myth? Well, possibly. So I began to search out from other faiths, what they believed, and why they believed them. One of my favorite books was Huston Smith’s work on the religions of the world. I was most impressed that Dr. Smith had done the field research that I would want to do if I had had the opportunity.

What came through to me so clearly in that research, and more of my own in reading and talking to those who practiced other faiths, was that Buddhism, stripped dalailamadown to it’s core teachings was nearly identical in principle, and many of the Buddha‘s teachings were a rephrasing of the rabbi’s, or the rabbi’s teachings were a rephrasing of the Buddha’s teachings. Either way, this gave me a basis on which to build my own practice. I had also found a woman who would teach me regarding the indigenous beliefs of the First People, so I must admit this is also part of my beliefset. In fact, my current practice has little to do with ceremony from any of the three basic foundation sets, and much to do with how I see things, and the principles I try to practice in daily life.

There are some lovely side issues when Buddhism is so similar to the Christian path. One is that I see Y’shua as another Buddha, an enlightened human, not a God. Another is that, with Buddhism, there is no need to worry whether there is a “Father” God at all, Buddhism is about relieving humanity from suffering, not about worshipping a God.  Ergo, you can be an atheist and practice Buddhism quite easily. The key, for me, has more to do with how you treat your fellow human beings, in following Buddha’s path, you are in obedience to the one I call the “Ancient of Days”. There is another gem here that should not be over-looked. With Buddhism, you are instructed right at the start that this has to do with your own journey, not about telling others how to live. You don’t have to worry about “John”, or “Suzi”, or anybody else along the way, just worry about yourself. What a wonderful release from being responsible for how others live. It isn’t yours to worry about.

8fold_pathNow, that last part, that’s been a point of contemplation for me. Y’shua taught us not to judge others, he also told us that we shouldn’t worry about the splinter in our brother’s eye when we had a log in our own. That should pretty much tell us to mind our own p’s and q’s, but, rather than telling us not to worry about others so much, Gautama Buddha went on to teach us how to travel the path toward the light, i.e. Wisdom, our own ethical conduct, where to concentrate our efforts. Though you can see the parallels in their teachings in the third link I gave you, the focus of their teachings was a bit different. Y’shua’s was almost all about conduct, Gautama was about the inner journey. Both were leading us toward spiritual growth, Buddha was teaching us how to be another Buddha. Though I believe it was Y’shua’s intent to also teach us to be like him, that has been made to look almost impossible by those who preach and teach in Christian churches, teaching us to love the messenger and forget his message. I don’t personally believe we can afford to do that. We must learn to follow the message.

 

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Doing Evil in God’s Name ~

tiffany7Doing evil things in God’s name is done all the time, but it is most often done by those who claim that the truth exists only from their particular religious viewpoint.The sadness of this is that it precludes that, either there really is no God, and the so called leader of the group is the only authority, or that God is blind to all that is done by this “blessed” vehicle, calling all done by these acolytes as “Holy”.

I believe that there is but One God. I have seen much that implies there are many powerful entities in this world that would constitute godlings from a strictly human perspective. Some of these I would count good, some, evil. But the One is good beyond measuring by our pitiful standards. Now, having stated that, I believe also that this “One” has infinite knowledge of all that moves and lives in the time-space continuum, and therefore knows when deeds are done in compassion, and when they are done with self centered intent.

If this is so, and I have perceived correctly, then it truly is impossible to do evil deeds in the name of God, or good deeds in the name of the Devil, at least on an eternal scale. This would mean that it does not matter what you call yourself, or, indeed, who you call your God. What matters is how you live your life. I am quite aware that there is no religious person in this world that would not argue this with me, but if the One sees all and knows all, it is what is in your heart that truly matters, at all times and in all ways.

You can fool me, I am but a piddling mortal, but you cannot fool the One who holds my name, you cannot fool the Infinite.

Meantime . . . .

158283722I am on a friend’s computer, and thought I would post from here. We are needing to replace the breaker box in order to have things back to normal, so it may be a while before I can post regularly again. In the interim, I have been reading for the pure fun of it. Some mind candy that may or may not be particularly “healthy” but is certainly a fun read. Right now I am going through the Dresden Files, Jim Butcher’s tales of a white wizard in modern Chicago. The stories are fun, and his portrayal of Harry as a wizard going against the main stream of thought in the “wizarding community” are actually, as with all good storytellers, character studies of a man whose life is nothing but test after test of his mettle, so to speak.

Harry is a wizard who got off to a poor start to begin with. His mother was aligned with the murky forces of dark magic, his father a stage magician. He attempts to live a life doing good amidst all manner of  temptations to turn to black magic in a modern world that doesn’t even believe magic is “real”. The struggles are set in a world of fantasy, the character development of the wizard, however, is the study of any human being caught in a continual loop of adversity. The things that make the read pure fun, and still a study of spiritual paths, per se, is Butcher’s continuous explanations of Harry’s perspectives.

He is dealing with being on the outer rim of everything. He cannot lead a so called normal life, after all he really is a wizard, yet, he stukeleys_druidis beginning to learn, slowly, that the mother who died giving him birth was aligned with the murkier side of things, and that he was apparently intended to practice that way as well, since he wishes to do good, he is caught in a crack. The “good guys” don’t trust him, he has already used magic to destroy his teacher who was trying to enthrall him. This is an infraction of the “First Law of Magic”. The “bad guys” want him, but he does not want them. The temptation is to either go dark, get out, or sit down and cover his eyes and ears. What a life!

Butcher addresses many things that seem to have filtered into our world as misconceptions through the misunderstanding of what is in the realm of Spirit. Things like demons. Most true demons don’t know and don’t care about humans. Much, indeed, that is harmful to humans in that realm really doesn’t bear humanity distinct malignant will. The forces and entities that reside in that realm are busy tearing, destroying, and just being, where they are. Even much that is beautiful and “Good” does not have a direct bearing on humans, and may, indeed, be too powerful or too “wild” to be part of the world of humanity. The clash most often comes when a human draws one of them into our world thinking they can control the demon and use it’s power to get what they want without having to earn it the hard way. When those forces are unleashed into a vulnerable world, things get a bit shaky. Seldom are they as dramatic as one sees in the Dresden Files, but that is usually what has happened, nevertheless.

sn1987a_nasaThe problem, unfortunately, that has plagued us for most of the time humankind has been on this planet is the egocentricity of our understanding of the world at large. It usually isn’t really all about us, we just think it is. Even our concept of G-d comes from that egocentric place. It is an afront to most people’s beliefs that G-d isn’t even all about us. There is much of G-d’s perspective that has absolutely nothing to do with the creation of those humans on the planet Earth. Are we important to G-d, oh, I think so, but then, I believe all life is important to G-d, and I think G-d is big enough to handle it all, it’s just that we often do not live up to our highest potential and attempt to blame that on G-d, mom, or the neighbor. Sorry, folks, we are responsible for who we are and what we do. Painful though that truth may be. I’d much rather be able to blame someone else for my faults, but I suspect they are mine, and I will have to answer for them in the end. Dang the bad luck!

Child Evangelism ~

Once upon a time, I had the pleasure of caring for a young child as a “baby sitter cum foster mom”. Her mother had left the home situation and the child and ran off with a druggie friend. She was in my care for about four years and I enjoyed almost every minute of it, I say almost since she was inclined to scream if she didn’t get her way, and I am stubborn enough that getting her way was not going to happen if her way was something that was not good for her.

Her father allowed her to be picked up each Sunday morning by a bus from a local church. I had asked him at one point if he had any idea what they taught her, and he said it was just something for her to do, it didn’t matter what they taught. (YIKES!) It was not but maybe a month later that a friend and I had been discussing spiritual things over a cup of coffee at my kitchen table. BJ started to tell us I was wrong, that God would be angry if we didn’t do what he said and we needed to go to the church she was going to on Sunday mornings.

I asked her Papa if that was what he wanted his daughter to think about G-d. He said no, perhaps he would stop her from going. I asked if he would let me find a church that at least taught of G-d as a loving friend who cared about her, not the angry G-d she was being taught about. He consented and I found a church that would pick her up for him that taught that Jesus was her friend.

That was at least some improvement, though, like many others, I prefer to allow children to start learning about G-d when they start asking the questions, first because that is the point at which they are ready to hear about God, and second because all I feel a child should be concerned with is that

  1. God is love,
  2. God loves you,
  3. God is there as your friend,
  4. We live in a world that isn’t always fair,
  5. God cares even when the world isn’t fair,

Those are the basics that it seems even we adult children need to remember, and sometimes even that is more than we can understand. Since I do not see Y’shua as G-d incarnate, I have difficulty with the entire thrust of Evangelism, not just the Children’s ministry. I believe that if one truly lives in a manner that bespeaks kindness at all turns of the wheel, that alone will bring those who are interested to question what grounds us in such a way of being. I believe that it is a most dishonorable thing for those of us who do believe that God is real to invade the homes of those who do not believe G-d and pluck out their children from them. It smacks of the very things Evangelicals fear most; the “state” removing their children and putting them in government, atheistic facilities to grow up without God in their lives at all. We return then to Y’shua’s teachings, if you do not want it done to you, do not do it to others!

God is?

Is God? Does a true God exist? I should have put this post much sooner, shouldn’t I, because you know that I believe God is, but is not necessarily as conceived by the Gurus. It is one of the reasons I have been rather careful to put my comments in the sphere of one imperfect, maybe crazy (voices, you know) woman who lived most of her life in Indiana. Don’t mistake me for a guru. My posts are aimed at making people think, and to stop the insanity of war over whose God is bigger. I know, that’s asking a great deal, and one little woman now in Texas, probably ain’t gonna accomplish much.

Back to the question; Is God real, and if so, what is God, and what does God expect, or does God expect? Now, those who have contemplated the heavenlies before me have concluded that good and evil existed before man was created, and that man was “supposed” to be some sort of answer to that. Well, that experiment seems to have gone awry. Of course, we see the big blue marble that is our home as quite large where to God it might be no larger than a petri dish is to us.

Since this blog really is about my own experiences, I am going to try to convey my perception of Spirit and why I believe in what I believe. You are aware if you have read my previous posts that I hear voices, and have for much of my life. As an adult who has read and attended more than one psychology class, AHA there is some truth to the idea that people study psycholgy to find out how to “fix” themselves, I am quite aware that these may be no more than splintered portions of my subconscious mind, giving substance to both dark and light beliefs. It is possible. I think it is more than that.

Why? Because every great once in a while from either end of the spectrum of good and evil one of the voices will introduce me to a concept to which I had not been before introduced, even when I look back over my life to see where that might have come from, there seems to be no point of origin within me. So, either I am hearing what other people are thinking; possible, or I am hearing entities that exist outside the bubble that contains the me that is me. Possible if you look at the spectrum of energy and realize that all energy travels that same path, not necessarily visible, but certainly known.

Now, I must confess that the spectrum so symbolizes the God presence in my life that at one time I felt that I should call God “Prismaspirian”, for the whirling spectrum of light that seems to guide me, yes, I ‘hallucinate” as well. She, however, seemed to inform me that she was not necessarily Greek, or any other nationality, so that Spirit was sufficient to call her, since any such name would merely describe what I “saw” of her, not who she is. Even that name is Latin, but it’s meaning is breath, and she has seemed to be satisfied with that “title” with many more than just myself. She also said that she was not God, but more a representative of the higher energies available to a human.

It was she that introduced me to the idea that God very God was so immense that there were many many parts of God’s being that had nothing at all to do with human beings or with the big blue marble we call home. It was also she that introduced me to the idea that we were indeed made in God’s likeness, but that it had nothing to do with our human form, but with the rainbow of energies known as the chakras (Hindu origin, but still, apparently as close a proximity to reality as possible).

She also cautioned me not to get too caught up in any one particular concept regarding appearance because though there had been some really close portrayals, none had yet won the prize for accuracy, partly because we do not have enough senses, apparently there are more than 5 if you “graduate” to the higher levels, to understand or even get an accurate “picture” of the Highest and Holiest. And the five we have need to be more acute to actually catch all the nuances of each and every vibration.

She has also cautioned me that I was not to presume I was any kind of Moses or spokesperson for God or mankind, but was to presume at all times that the lessons she gave were for my own spiritual growth, not necessarily for others. This is why I offer my experiences as my experiences, if they help you, fine, if not, disregard them as the ramblings of a crazy woman.

Calvin or Arminius ~

I was certain I had written a post about these two influential theologians before, but it is apparently one I was unhappy with, and discarded. Calvin’s world was a world where God predetermined all that happened, even those things we perceive as evil come from God as part of an eternal plan. With Calvin, the only people that are in Heaven were determined from before their birth, and those in Hell are the same, determined before they were even conceived. When one argues that this eliminates free will, the debate is that, no, God just knows who will choose the right way, he doesn’t make you choose.

Unfortunately, my problem is that Calvinists want it both ways. Either God is the “Boss” and takes the credit and blame for all that happens on Earth (in which case God is both devil and angel), or God is Creator giving free will and allowing the created to choose whether they will love or not. This is an old debate, and I most certainly will not be the one to solve the issues on this page, but I would very much like to throw a couple of thoughts out there.

First of all, let me reiterate that I am a reincarnationist, there were and are Ivrit (Jews) who were such, as well as those who did not believe in reincarnation, so this is also an old debate. I do not buy all of Paul’s theology, and it is Paul’s writings that form the basis of Calvinism, i.e. Calvinism is Paulism. Paul’s theology was thoroughly influenced by Greek and Roman thinking. What this has done is marked main line Christianity with all manner of hidden little bits of treasure that hearken back not to Judaism, but to Paganism, while at the same time prancing around and pronouncing that those dirty pagans are all doomed to an eternity in Hell, and it was predetermined!

Then there is the idea that God, who is, from both the perspectives of Calvin and Arminius, eternally and truly good, yet, in Calvinism brings forth things we perceive as evil to bring about a greater good. So, in Calvinism Stalin killed 20 million people in order to bring some good end into the world, or maybe even Hitler’s puny 12 million ought to be counted in here. By Calvinistic thought, these were both emissaries of God. Sorry, you may buy that, I don’t. I do however buy that God is so merciful that, should either man have turned around at any point and gave up their murderous pursuits, they would have been welcomed with open arms {A little reminder, I happen to believe that the sin against the Holy Spirit is calling evil good, and good evil, so it is quite possible that Calvinists are treading on thin ice, eh?)

Now, even though my belief system more closely emulates that of Arminius than that of Calvin, ( truth to tell, I am probably Hamayim more than any totally Christian theology.) I do believe that Hashem can bring about good things from the darkest evil man can concoct. I believe that Hashem is more powerful and bigger than anything that human mind can comprehend. But I also believe that Hashem created and released us into the universe with true free will.

That means that we can make the choice to love or fear. Note, I did not say love or hate. Hate is not the opposite of love, fear is. Every shortcoming, whether just a mistake in thought or a truly dark and evil deed can be traced back to fear! Hate is even a result of fear. I believe that God is love, and that everyone who loves is born of God, and those who do not know how to love do not know God. {1John 4:7-8} That has nothing to do with labels like Calvinism, Arminianism, Buddhism, Taoism, Pentecostalism, or even antidisestablishmentarianism! It has to do with knowing the very essence of God in a very personal way that decries the preaching of any evangelist anywhere. If I believe Calvin, I believe that God is incapable of spreading that love without Christians spreading the Gospel. Excuse me, do you see what you have contrived, here? Your Almighty God that you insist I limit by saying he gave me and all other humans complete free will, has left the fate of mankind in the hands of a few country preachers. I don’t think so!!

Now, I also believe that Hashem is quite capable of picking you or me up by the bootstraps and sending us through a meatgrinder without the mortal assistance of any human should God wish to do that. I believe that God is so huge that The Ancient of Days is greater than all the universes in existence. I also believe that Hashem exists in that space between one’s in breath and one’s out breath. God is Awesome, literally. You have no clue what you are saying about my perspective of God. I also believe that when a person of any persuasion from Buddhist to Baptist puts their life in the hands of the Almighty, that Hashem is able to turn around all circumstances in their lives.

Et cetera, et cetera, et cetera . . . . .


I love this symbol. It has not, to my knowledge ever been made the symbol of a cause or religion. It is so beautiful I have often wondered why. I have also wondered why my fascination with this beautiful mark that simply signifies et cetera, all that other stuff. Except that I am an amateur calligrapher and have been since I was 12. That would probably explain loving the beauty of it, but there’s more to my love than that.

The very meaning of sacred is to set apart, as in no longer common or profane but held in high regard. The ampersand is a bridge; its meaning is inclusion, not exclusion. It ties things together: Black & White; Red, White, & Blue; You & Me. There is nothing exclusionary about the ampersand. If it became a holy symbol it would be because there was a group of people that understood that God loves everyone, red & yellow, black & white, they are precious in his sight, and it’s not just the little children of the world, it’s the workers, & the aged, & the moms & the dads, it’s the bus boy in the restaurant & the owner, & the waitress, & the waiter, & the customer, the straight & the gay. Oops, did I say that? Yeah, I did.

There are those who would point out Sodom & Gomorrah to me and say, hey, God doesn’t like gays! And I would have to say to you that you haven’t studied this tale nearly well enough to even begin to preach to me if you take that as the message. I want to know a couple of things. Have you seen groups of gay men going around and raping other men? Have people come knocking on your door insisting you give them your guests to appease their sexual appetites? If that is the case, then, maybe God does need to come around with fire and brimstone. I’m glad that’s not my call, but, as a woman, I really detest the idea of rape, and I cannot believe it would be any easier on a man.

As far as I can tell forcing others into a sexual byplay is not what being gay is all about. I have had the honor of having been befriended by some very honorable men who happened also to be gay. They wouldn’t think of forcing a partner. So, where is your comparison, really? Does it even come close to holding? I don’t think so. And that only works for me if you take seriously the idea of stoning your children if they refuse to clean up their room, or stone a stranger for walking through your church when uninvited, now there’s a church that forgot the message for falling in love with the messenger. Go for it, sing Hallelujah, Glory to God, and when the stranger comes in your midst and doesn’t wipe his feet, (yes folks that is in the OT!) you stone him. That would make the headlines

To adopt the Ampersand as a holy symbol requires that we see ourselves as being “in the soup,” as it were, with everyone else. It requires that we drop the us and them perspective. It requires that we love God, and love our fellow man; even when our fellow man isn’t from our social club.

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