Feb 27, 2009

Waiting To Be Harvested? Religious People It Is Time To Move On!

Part I. Introduction: Isn't It Time To Move On?

Religious people and religious organizations: I believe that the time has come for the worldwide religious community, Christian, Hindu, Muslim, Jew and more to 'move on' toward completion. The religious community at large needs to alter its historical practice of hindering and preventing others from pursuing their divinely appointed destinies. The religious community has traveled around the same mountain for long enough.

Many movers and shakers of the world, also have awareness and a direct relationship with the 'Unifying Principle, Singularity or God Equivalent'. The latter have been referred to by many appellations in the worldwide religious community as God, Allah, The Great Spirit...

Obstructionism and obfuscation by the intolerant zealot members of the worldwide religious community will apparently no longer be tolerated. Their objective appears to have always been the throttling of progress.

Their real passion appears to be to live vicariously in an era that has past them by. Other citizens of the world have the right to pursue a course that may differ from there's, and they are not required to seek permission from religious zealots in order to do so. Jesus once explained to his disciples that 'those who are not against us are for us'.

If the collective of worldwide religious institutions believed what they have been teaching is true and that what they have been teaching is build on the foundation of God, then what is it that they have to fear, for God is not mocked?

Citizens of the 21st Century can not go on pretending that they are living in yesterday.

Religious institutions, in my opinion, ought to be on the cutting edge of discovery, given each ones universal tendency to claim to have a unique and ongoing relationship with the author of the Universe (an entity that by the way no one has actually ever seen). Religion's predilection to oppose anything that is new to them ought not to go unabated.

The overarching question that the worldwide religious community ought to be asking itself, instead of hindering others is: Whether or not the religious community is where it should be in a 21st Century post-modern context? I don't believe that the worldwide religious community is where it should be in the 21st Century! And to prove it, consider the state of religion today.

From my (recently preached) sermon entitled: MOVon.Church
... each one of us possesses a core set of (basic) religious or philosophical beliefs, ideas, ideals, principles and values
... the typical core belief system is preoccupied with an antiquated system of ideas and teachings that have been passed down intergenerationally ..., more often than not, we are locked into an entrenched belief system, whether it has been tested for its voracity or not
... oftentimes, we refuse to test our core beliefs, which I believe is necessary if we intend to move forward to the next stage towards completion
... the fact of the matter is that we cannot live as we should in today, if our focus, today, is mostly shaped according to the rules of yesterday
.... in fact, it would be just as difficult for our predecessors to do so if they attempted to live in a 21st century reality, with understanding from the common era.

I believe that it is time for each one of us to shed the shackles of fear and dogmatism. Next, we need to move on to where we should be in a 21st century context. We hurt ourselves and hinder others when we insist that everyone should live according to the rules and understanding of yesterday. It is time for us to move on and to get in step with The Singularity. Haven't we compassed the same mountain long enough?

In the book of Titus Paul wrote these shocking words: Wherefore, Titus, rebuke them sharply that they be may sound in the faith; not giving heed to Jewish fables and commandments of men (that turn from the truth)! Titus 1:13 and 14.

The (unconfirmed) writer of the book of Hebrews also wrote: But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age. Hebrews 5:14 (and)

Therefore, leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us
'move on' to perfection. Hebrews 6:1.

I believe that since the time that humans began populating the earth, too many of us in particular the ones who claimed to have been or still claim to be the people of God (have spent the majority our lives being influenced by myth and superstition). In its latest iteration, modern day believers, especially Christians, are focused on harvest day.

How much more could have accomplished if we had not permitted our lives to be ruled by speculation, ritual, fear and superstition? I have often wondered how much further along we would be today if it had not been the case.

Individuals, who claim to know God, in my opinion, ought to stop trying to prevent others who do not see things as they do from moving forward. Furthermore, they ought to stop trying to hinder those of us, who are pursuing knowledge and understanding, that they do not have any interest in, given their nuanced views of the world.

Their reasons for doing so, I suspect, have more to do with selfishness, fear, poor teaching and superstition, all of which are the consequences of classical religious conditioning. One of the by products of living in the past is that we are loosing our more educated class of young people.

Our young people are looking for answers elsewhere. And more and more, religion is becoming irrelevant to them. Many of them are choosing secularism and other sources outside of religion to shape their world views, and to provide them with answers to their questions. May The Sovereign free us from those current and past encumbrances that hinder our progress towards further advancement!

Question for readers to ponder?

1) What are you curious about, or afraid to pursue because it might bring you into conflict with your religious teachers or religious dogma? (2) Are you afraid to reason, to rationalize or explore beyond the limitations that have been imposed upon you by some religious group or teacher? (3) Do you feel as if you have been stuck in the same primordial religious mud long enough? (4). And finally, isn't it time to move on and into 21st century understanding?

The Apostle Paul wrote to Titus, urging him to admonish his pupils to reject classical Jewish myth and fable. Ironically, in a 21st century context, much of what the Apostle wrote himself should be subjected to similar scrutiny, and placed within its proper historical context. Blasphemy you say? He may have erred as much about the events that were to take place regarding the Resurrection, as he accused Hymaneus and Alexander of doing (see 1 Timothy 1:20).

The Apostle Paul believed that he would be alive when the rapture occurred, and that he would rise along with those who had been dead in their graves. (Read 1 Thessalonians 4:17, Paul's epistle that was sent to the Thessalonicans)!

However, the Apostle has been dead, as far we know, for about 2000 years now. In my opinion, he clearly misspoke and erred to be succinct given his conclusions about the rapture. Isn't it time to engage in a critical examination of the Apostle's epistles? We should do so in particular, because his well-intended writings dominate most of the New Testament portion of the Canon? How much weight should his letters carry?

I have gone on record saying that the Apostle Paul would be shocked to discover that his epistles were elevated, posthumously, to the status of sacred scripture in Constantine's Canon.

I believe that we should be concerned, given the extent to which his unqualified writings have influenced Christianity, and may have caused many Christians to stumble? How much farther along would we be in the 21st century, if we had been less influenced by this singular author, who has most Christians simply waiting to be harvested?

In my opinion, every person has the right to seek after what he or she perceives or believes to be relevant. For the fact of the matter is that different people are harbingers of differing passions, motivations, callings and inspirations

Therefore each person has a need to pursue a course that may differ from the one that is being pursued by his or her counterpart, even if the direction that one has chosen may make little sense to those who have selected a different course. It is as if religious people have forgotten the simple Proverb that instructs parents to 'train up a child in the way that it should go...!

The point being that each child has a different personality, as well as different abilities - each child must be uniquely developed for its course in life!

That each person is different and has his or her own road to travel has seemingly been lost upon many in the religious community. Most servants of the book (I am including all sacred texts), have little patience with those of us who are not enslaved to a particular belief, system of writing, group of texts, or teaching that does not match their own.

The latter, in many instances believe that what they understand to be true must be true, by nature of the fact that they believe or see it that way. Therefore, what they have concluded that what they believe must have originated with God. Many have given up on God and religion, not because God failed, but because of the failings of religion. Religion's exclusive claim of being the earthy habitat for God as well as his spokesman falls short; given the shortcomings of religion

I am personally more interested in objective and verifiable truth. I learned from the same Apostle Paul, see 1 Thessalonians 5:21, that we should scrutinize everything for its voracity. In other words, everything that we hold to be true ought to be subjected to a process of scrutiny and verification, including what has been designated as sacred scripture.

In this text Paul wrote, "...prove all things and hold fast to those things which are true". Moreover, I agree fully with the Apostle in that regard! Too many religious individuals have been conditioned to believe that they should deny reason, ignore proof and simply accept dogma and other unsubstantiated ideas or traditions as indisputable truth.

Today's teachers and preachers are mostly teaching representatives of a point of view from the past (one that oftentimes does more to impair than to contribute to forward thinking). Therefore, I also believe that it is time to reconsider all of the teachings of our past and present day teachers. Many of our latter day teachers have no idea of where or how their sacred texts, that they are sworn to protect have come into being.

In my learned opinion, here are a few things that each one of us could and likely should do. In short, we ought to reconsider the teachers as well as the subject matter that we have been taught, we also need to reconsider those other sources that we have been historically taught to disregard. I suspect that what some others had to say may have carried more weight than we were led to believe.

Our objective, in the final analysis, would be to sort out what is and is not 'good'. Then we should hold on to what we know has been tested in the crucible of examination (which differs by and large from the manner in which sacred texts have been handled in the past and up until now). The end result would be, I hope, that it would no longer matter if you were a Jew, Christian, Muslim ..., but that you were simply connected with and following after the truth and what is true.

We also need to pay special attention to all of the associated ritual, mysticism, superstition and worship practices that have been passed down to us through the generations. And finally, we must consider the motives of our current day crop of teachers, many of whom appear to have a stake in simply holding us to the past.

Jesus would often upset the Jews when he violated the Sabbath as well as other sacred Hebrew customs and observances. Why? The answer is that the Jews were more vested in symbolism, than they were in the meanings of the symbols. It was far more convenient for them to slay a goat or a lamb and substitute its blood for atonement purposes, than to put away sin from their own lives.

The Jews were master sacrificers, and today most religious people are very adept at practicing religious symbolism as opposed to internalizing meaningful truth that will alter consciousness.

Why do we need to engage in a pointed review of the past? The answer is so that the human family can move on and experience deeper depths of knowledge, fulfillment and understanding (of the kind that we have been missing out on given our total embrace of 1st and prior century teachings). I repeat, I do not believe that we are where we should be in terms of knowledge and understanding in a 21st Century post-modern world.

And while I recognize the substantial contributions that religion has made to humanity, at the same time I believe that religion has been the number one culprit in holding us back from where we ought to be at this moment in time.

Frankly, we are sentient beings, individuals who are capable of doing far more than simply repeating rituals, and listening to retrograde teachers who make their living by repeating stories that derive from questionable ancient texts. Oftentimes these stories and myths, as well as the ones who rehearse them to us have a singular aim in mind.

Too many of our modern day teachers and preachers are anything other than sophisticated storytellers who repeat the same stories over and over again. Each one of us is aware or ought to be aware, that if anyone were to engage in repeating the same stories enough times, that in time they would likely become very good at their craft. Some of our retrograde post-modern teachers and preachers have honed their storytelling skills to the extent that they are very convincing.

For without being challenged, they lull their listeners into acceptance and conformity.

The listening audience is often mesmerized by their verbiage as well as the teacher's ability to recant old stories, even though neither the teacher nor the listener have ever questioned the voracity of what is being taught or the creditability of the sources that were used.

The major problem with many of our present day (mostly non-Jewish) Christian teachers and preachers, and I don't include myself in with this group, is that they cause too many individuals to live their lives beneath the rubric of fear and intimidation. And as a result, a substantial portion of the human family has regressed given the retardative process called teaching and preaching that its members have been subjected to and shaped by for most of their religious lives.

Many of us have been hindered from reaching our potential and pursuing our destinies (as a result of having been shaped in a cauldron of fear). We need relevant teaching as well as qualified teachers who are capable of providing us with relevant teaching in a post-modern world context. Again, we need the type of teachers and teachings that inform and help us to excel in the 21st Century world; that is where we live today.

We need to know whether or not today's genre of teachers has actually heard from God lately?

One would also automatically conclude that religious adherents would be the most enlightened people in the entire world given their universal claims of having a direct and personal relationship with the Almighty! However, the facts do not support their claim. Oftentimes, it is just the opposite whereas religious individuals often appear to be the most repressed people on the earth, at times.

Therefore progressive teachers and progressive teachings is what the world is in need of today. We need fewer teachers who have are incapable of changing, and that have simply found a way to make a living by repeating the same old stories, typically on a weekly basis. Isn't there anything new to teach? If you listen to them long enough, one would be hard pressed to ask whether or not God is actually alive and active in the 21st century, or an imaginary force that was believed to exist in the past?

I believe that the higher spiritual plane that many of us have been trying to attain to (over the span of our lifetimes) has been within our grasps all along. Unfortunately, we were discouraged from pursuing it, and instead we were conditioned to take an unnecessary detour and finally settle at the principle faze of our journeys. And as a result, we have spent our lives (often 40 years on average) circling the same mountain, instead of entering into the promise!

Too many individuals have either been discouraged or dissuaded from questioning or surpassing the imposed and self-limiting understanding and conclusions that have been drawn by their often biased, ill-equipped and non-critical teachers.

We have been taught to be passive, when we should have been and should be aggressively pursuing after what is so important to both our personal and corporate destinies. From time to time, I find myself reflecting on the lives of notable historical icons like Imhotep, Aristotle, Copernicus, Galileo, Sir Isaac Newton and many others like them.

These historical figures were not afraid to take on the powers that be in order to pursue higher knowledge and to engage in discovery. And as a result of transcending the strictures that were intended by the powers that be to bind them, these giants rose to the occasion and escaped the bands and the bonds of mediocrity, fear and complacency. Many of them went on to make significant discoveries, and to contribute valiantly to the post modern world.

And to their credit, they were also responsible for a new way of thinking about the world. Centuries later we are still benefiting from their wisdom, courage, acumen and accomplishments. What we are waiting for today, is for all of the giants of today (all of us) to rise from religious and other encumbrances. Then we can proceed and pursue our pre-incarnate destinies. However, they will have to have the courage of heart to transcend the barriers of fear, and the religious bombardment that they will receive if they are to succeed.

And keep in mind that being religious and seeking after the truth are oftentimes, two different animals. Jesus once said, 'and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free'. He did not make a similar claim about religion. In fact, religion is an institution where most people feel as if they are not free at all.

When the church believed that the earth was flat, men like Galileo challenged the position of the church and they did so ignoring the price that they would have to pay for doing so. And in the end, it turned out that the church was wrong, and that Galileo and other philosophers were right.

Not much has changed within the religious community before and after the 17th century Enlightenment period. The religious community has often behaved as if it were the exclusive authority on God (having seemingly ignored the presage advice of Jesus Christ that truth brings about freedom). It often seems, on the other hand, that the sole purpose of religion is to kill, steal and to destroy dreams as well as progress or to fulfill a death wish!

Similar to the manner in which our predecessors overcame their obstacles and in particular the ones who would have held them back from advancement, we also should be pursuing wisdom, knowledge and pleasure in deference to all of the ones who insist on holding us in the place 'where they find themselves stuck and unable to move out of' today. Have you ever considered what else remains to be discovered, that we haven't even touched the surface of yet, given the roadblocks that are often imposed by religious hinderers?

I can still recall in my own tradition when members of our denomination were actually discouraged from pursuing higher education. In fact a post-secondary education was highly discouraged. Thank God that someone broke through the ranks of backwardness, and the rest of us followed her lead. The women had to lead us out of bondage.

Or have you considered where we would be today, if these noble figures had succumbed to the will of the church. We would still be walking around, very likely, believing that the Earth was flat and encased within a star-studded celestial dome.

Humans may have constructed the radio receivers, the delivery system that is beneficial and brings the mass media right into our homes; however, radio waves were in place long before humans appeared on the scene. What took Marconi so long? One has to wonder what other hidden treasures are there that are yet to be discovered! What else is lying dormant in the recesses of history that so far has gone undiscovered?

What has been holding us back from standing on the shoulders of our noble predecessors, in order to make the next leap into infinite understanding, perhaps the 3rd, 4th 5th and infinite, dimensions Are we on pace? Why it is that religion always challenges a 'thinking person', but refuses to be challenged itself? Are religious groups and individuals simply afraid of being proven wrong?

I suspect that religious individuals, groups and organizations will need to come to grips with the fact that much of what has been taught before as absolute truth, along with its many other malapropisms, is about to be debunked! Some of our religious tergiversators are already aware of this inconvenient truth, and they are still reticent to act independently to do anything about it (before it's is too late).

I believe that when all of the truth comes to fruition, that it will not be a good time for the worldwide religious community. Someone is going to have to do some damage control, unless the faith of many in the religious community is completely destroyed; the latter is already taking place in secular Europe and Israel for example. The same is true with a substantial portion of our more educated young people. Therefore the leaders of religious organizations ought to take the lead and admit that some of what has been taught before by them has simply been taught in error!

On one occasion, Jesus reportedly said these words to his listening audience, "Have not I said that ye are gods"? It appears to me that too many humans, in particular the religious ones who have been stuck in the same primordial mud for some time now, do not want the rest of us to exceed their limited understanding that is typically based on 1st, 2nd and 3rd century understanding.

Isn't it time for members of the religious community to begin behaving like the gods that Jesus reportedly said that we were intended to be?
The late Reverend Dr. Martin Luther Kind once said: I wish today, that Christians would stop talking so much about religion, and start doing something about it, and we would have a much better world!

Peace & Grace
Rev. C. Solomon

... to be continued,

What Should Have Happened By Now: Here are a few examples, can you think of any more?
The life cycle would have been extended even more than it has been, and we would likely be living what I refer to as time-independent eternal life reality.
The suppression of females would have ended, assuming that we continued to occupy gender-based bodies.
We would have done a better job of understanding and dealing with what we consider to be the more complex issues such as homosexuality (remember some humans have been born with 6 fingers and toes), stem cell research, the environment, infant mortality, autism, retardation...!
We would have dealt in an intelligent manner with those forces that encourage suppression, divisiveness, war and discrimination; the latter would likely have been eliminated.
We would also be able to communicate by now, in the language of what we refer to as God, instead of through the use of gibberish, nasal and guttural sounds.
The means and the methods that we would employ in order to relocate in space would be far more advanced.
Living on other planets (rocks), if we were to still exist in our current biological forms would have taken place by now, albeit we would have still been existing in a fairly primitive state of being inside of carbon-based bodies.
We would have had a direct encounter with, and likely have understood better, and co-existed alongside the entity, sovereignty or principle that we refer in today's nomenclature as God. Remember this entity has been referred to by many names and inscriptions including El, Adoni, Ywvh, Allah, the Great Spirit..., in the past!

Finally, if we don't get busy soon, future generations will consider us to have been nothing more than primitive failures. And those of us, who will do so, must pass the baton in order to benefit both our contemporaries and the ones who are to follow us in future generations.

If our predecessors of thousands of years ago were to return today and ask, what are you folks doing - and whether or not God returned by now or whether or not we are living in heaven? Our answer would be that we are still reciting the stories that you left for us thousands of years ago. Furthermore, we would tell them that Jesus hasn't returned according to the stories that you passed on and finally that we are definitely not living in heaven!

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