Jump to content

Blinded By Belief


JosephM
 Share

Recommended Posts

Marcus Borg made a good point when he said that something doesn't need to be 'factually' true in order to be 'actually' true. That observation has allowed me to understand the stories of The Bible in terms of oral tradition, history, wisdom, and spiritual insight. With this in mind I've been able to navigate between blind acceptance and blind rejection.

 

Marcus Borg turned my head around and changed my perspective on Christianity and the Bible. I have learned so much from him and his teachings have enabled me to see the Bible through a whole new lens that increases my appreciation for it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 157
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

DavidK, Unity in the Bible is not uniformity, but harmony. As Christians we have a common life in Christ, but we do not have to follow conclusions that are not logical, simple traditions, spiritual narrow minded fear, and a limiting theology. A command of scripture is to love our neighbor because God loves them, not because they join our church, or follow one persons narrow interpretations from the Bible. We are not to judge others, which I might add means their belief, and religion. There are differing decisions on the spiritual path and they are not wrong, and they also lead to Truth and God the Father. Believing in one denominational persuasion does not make one an apostle or disciple, but if it leads to speaking bitter about others beliefs it shows a meanness. A true disciple will praise the Lord, not put down other religions. You can have Christian unity in your church without love, but you cannot have love without unity.

 

Unity is expressed in Christianity by letting the self be ruled by the Christ within. Let the Christ teachings unfold in and through our lives and know that this Christ principle indwells in every individual, no matter what the religious belief. Please give thanks for the realization of the the Christ consciousness alive within our lives.

Soma,

I have mentioned before that while all men act as if Christianity were true, I am not infering that all faiths are essentially the same. Far from it. While other faiths can also identify with the unity (harmony as it were) of all of creation, it is only Christianity that can address the needed explanation for its (creations) diversity.

 

Jesus said, "Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgement." If another "faith" rationally fails to consider reality, we have the obligation to share that truth with them without bitterness, but with love and in a way they may be able to understand.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Soma,

Jesus said, "Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgement." If another "faith" rationally fails to consider reality, we have the obligation to share that truth with them without bitterness, but with love and in a way they may be able to understand.

 

DavidK when you judge other faiths you are judging from appearance. Other faiths do rationally consider reality and they enhance Christianity with their explanations. For example, you have not meditated enough to judge other religions that meditate.

 

All religions have a perspective of theological thought. The belief that we hold to be the true will only be ratified when we stand before God until then our faith remains faith with our own interpretation of Scriptures.

 

It takes time to believe and accept the unifying force in one God and for the undesirable experiences accumulated to gradually disappear. We are either for or against unity so for something new to be born we need to pass from a sense of being isolated into a realization of oneness with everything. Unity can be achieved if we push the envelope and not reaffirm our limitations that our God is the true God again suggesting that there is more than one God. Defending limitations strengthens them limiting our beliefs and realities so to be successful we need the tool of knowledge to explore the unknown and find a deeper meaning in the word of God. With options and alternatives ignorance is not bliss, but a self imposed limitation.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Soma,

While other faiths can also identify with the unity (harmony as it were) of all of creation, it is only Christianity that can address the needed explanation for its (creations) diversity.

 

(snip)

 

David,

 

It seems to me it is precisely statements or beliefs such as this that make true unity with all of creation nearly impossible and if harm can be done, does the most harm.

 

Just something to consider.

 

Love Joseph

Link to comment
Share on other sites

soma,

The unity of all existence is that God created the external universe so that it has a certain form and it has a certain order, and created man conforms to that order so he can live within it. That is what actually exists and all men act on that truth. And with knowing that truth, it is Christianity that has the only answer to the question of both the personal unity (with freedom & morals) and diversity (with purpose & meaning) in God and in His creation, with the Biblical revelation binding not only the outward man but the inward as well, and in all these there is a unity.

---

Jesus said judging on substance, rather than emotions, is not only allowable in all things, but necessary. In regard to your topic; when we choose what we believe, we're making judgments on all faiths and their "gods".

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

DavidK, It seems your unity is focused on division rather than union. Our priority as Christians should be love, but we allow our feelings, Biblical standards and actions to become contempt and hate when others don't agree. Conservative Christians seem to look down on those with slightly different views. Christian condemn and excommunicate other Christians from their church for not having identical views. These differences among Christians has started killings and war for example Ireland between Christians. This defeats the one commandment Jesus gave, to love God and one another. Christians can't even get along with Christians with your attitude much less other religions. You seem to narrow your circle of unity with every post.

 

King James Bible Romans 22-14

Hast thou faith? have it to thyself before God. Happy is he that condemneth not himself in that thing which he alloweth.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The unity of all existence is that God created the external universe so that it has a certain form and it has a certain order, and created man conforms to that order so he can live within it. That is what actually exists and all men act on that truth.

 

Very profound yet all men do not act on that truth and conform as you suppose by your use of "all" in that statement. Many do not conform and perish by trying to create their own order.

 

And with knowing that truth, it is Christianity that has the only answer to the question of both the personal unity (with freedom & morals) and diversity (with purpose & meaning) in God and in His creation, with the Biblical revelation binding not only the outward man but the inward as well, and in all these there is a unity.

 

On the contrary, the Christianity you speak of, is that which is exclusive and instead of evolving to conform to that order that is necessary for consciousness to evolve with the external universe will perish with time.

 

---

Jesus said judging on substance, rather than emotions, is not only allowable in all things, but necessary. In regard to your topic; when we choose what we believe, we're making judgments on all faiths and their "gods".

 

It seems to me if you could "see" true substance, you would not be making that statement. Jesus said he did not judge of himself but allowed the father to work in and through him. Perhaps there is no need for us to make judgements on all faiths and their "gods" . One can choose what one believes but that is not a judgement of the other but rather a choice one makes. There is a difference.

 

Joseph

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

DavidK, It seems your unity is focused on division rather than union. Our priority as Christians should be love, but we allow our feelings, Biblical standards and actions to become contempt and hate when others don't agree. Conservative Christians seem to look down on those with slightly different views. Christian condemn and excommunicate other Christians from their church for not having identical views. These differences among Christians has started killings and war for example Ireland between Christians. This defeats the one commandment Jesus gave, to love God and one another. Christians can't even get along with Christians with your attitude much less other religions. You seem to narrow your circle of unity with every post.

 

King James Bible Romans 22-14

Hast thou faith? have it to thyself before God. Happy is he that condemneth not himself in that thing which he alloweth.

Am I wrong when I say you choose what you believe by way of your own judgment? If you are not a Jew you have judged Judaism. If you are a Jew you have judged it. Either way you would have judged Judaism by some manner alongside/against other belief systems in order to choose it.

 

If you do not understand why I can confidently say Christian philosophy is the only one that fills the philosophical needs of all the world's thought, that it has the only answer for our being, for explaining the dilemma of man's nobleness and cruelty, that the norms of Scripture more and more bring together the inward and outward man, where truth and love and meaning and beauty abound, and why we have real reason for hope; I would say you have misjudged not me, but Christianity itself.

Edited by davidk
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Very profound yet all men do not act on that truth and conform as you suppose by your use of "all" in that statement. Many do not conform and perish by trying to create their own order.

On the contrary, the Christianity you speak of, is that which is exclusive and instead of evolving to conform to that order that is necessary for consciousness to evolve with the external universe will perish with time.

It seems to me if you could "see" true substance, you would not be making that statement. Jesus said he did not judge of himself but allowed the father to work in and through him. Perhaps there is no need for us to make judgements on all faiths and their "gods" . One can choose what one believes but that is not a judgement of the other but rather a choice one makes. There is a difference.

 

Joseph

 

[/size][/font]

Joe,

Read this again: "God created the external universe so that it has a certain form and it has a certain order, and created man conforms to that order so he can live within it. That is what actually exists and all men act on that truth." I don't think you want to really argue this point. Like the serpant, you don't have a leg to stand on. All man must conform to the form and order of what actually exists so he can live within it, and everybody already knows this!

It's like having mouths to eat, lungs to breathe the air, muscles to cooperate with gravity, or whatever. Created man has the equipment that conforms to the world so he can live within it and he acts like it. He eats and breathes and walks and whatever.

--

Christianity is exclusive because it conforms to absolutes like: truth. Which never perishes.

--

Joe, another bad topic for you to argue. Choice is always a judgment call.

 

Sincerely,

Dk

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"God created the external universe so that it has a certain form and it has a certain order, and created man conforms to that order so he can live within it. That is what actually exists and all men act on that truth." If you're referring to simply being, David, you may have a point. If you're referring to human behavior, I would have to disagree.

Edited by Russ
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Am I wrong when I say you choose what you believe by way of your own judgment? If you are not a Jew you have judged Judaism. If you are a Jew you have judged it. Either way you would have judged Judaism by some manner alongside/against other belief systems in order to choose it.

 

If you do not understand why I can confidently say Christian philosophy is the only one that fills the philosophical needs of all the world's thought, that it has the only answer for our being, for explaining the dilemma of man's nobleness and cruelty, that the norms of Scripture more and more bring together the inward and outward man, where truth and love and meaning and beauty abound, and why we have real reason for hope; I would say you have misjudged not me, but Christianity itself.

 

Yes, Perhaps you are in error when you say that.

If I have a belief system, it is by choice and if I am wise enough I know it is subject to error and change because man is fallible. (progressives here) That in no way of itself judges another religion as wrong or in error. Perhaps different only. It seems to me, if one is rigid to ones own beliefs, one is by that action blinded by ones own beliefs so that one then fails to see the validity of other systems. The paradox is that when one is willing to surrender ones beliefs to God, only then can truth surface of its own accord and a harmony is seen rather than judgement of others and their system.

 

Christianity is not the Bible. Followers of Jesus were first called Christians in Antioch according to the NT. No Bible existed for them as exists today. Your definition of Christian is your own and Christianity is not being judged here. You are responsible for your own words.

 

Love Joseph

Link to comment
Share on other sites

DavidK, The child symbolizes the pure and instantaneous feelings of creative intelligence. This child is delivered out of the womb of our soul through the higher consciousness of Jesus Christ, located in the depths of our own human nature. Christ said, "Unless you become as a child you cannot enter the kingdom of heaven." He didn't mean for us to become childish but pure, innocent and unrehearsed. The infant emerges threatened by the negative perspectives of the world in the lower layers, to the higher layers of the mind where the function is to comfort and give refuge to others. Jesus is also pictured as this divine child ready to redeem mankind from its ignorance and misery. Your Christianity seems to add ignorance and misery to others by a desire to dominate the world. Closing your mind to a spiritual experience with Christ and his universal ideals hurts you and the people who believe your narrow ideas. They are so heavy on one side they would topple anyone.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you're referring to human behavior, I would have to disagree.

Russ,

Thanks for the post. Could you expound on where you think we may have diverged?

---

Joe,

It is quite difficult to believe you are endorsing the habit of choosing without an evaluation of the choices first?

---

soma,

I'm sorry you were toppled and couldn't see that evaluating the choices before choosing would be the prudent action to avoid ignorance and misery.

 

Dk

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"God created the external universe so that it has a certain form and it has a certain order, and created man conforms to that order so he can live within it. That is what actually exists and all men act on that truth."

I feel that war, violence, lack of compassion and love, racism, greed, etc. etc. are not examples of conforming to the Truth, but are examples of the weakness of flesh, the conformation to examples set by lower powers, and a turning away from the God that is within us all. The Truth to be acted upon is that God is within each and every one of us, is no further from us than our own breath, and can be experienced by any one. The Light of God shines deep inside us...let us stop for a moment with our words and quotes, with our opinions and books. The Truth to be known is the silence of the infinite that is ours when we close our eyes and calm ourselves to simply be with the One. I wish for nothing more. This is my aspiration and journey.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Joe,

It is quite difficult to believe you are endorsing the habit of choosing without an evaluation of the choices first?

---

 

Dk

 

:lol: Get serious David, one doesn't evaluate all other choices first before adopting beliefs. Most that are raised in Cristianity know very little of the other religions and most do not study them in detail. That is not my endorsement but rather an easy observation of reality from within the church system. To believe or relate to one religion is not necessarily to judge all others except in your mind which appears to me to have a very narrow 'either' 'or' view.

 

Love Joseph

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"God created the external universe so that it has a certain form and it has a certain order, and created man conforms to that order so he can live within it. That is what actually exists and all men act on that truth."

I feel that war, violence, lack of compassion and love, racism, greed, etc. etc. are not examples of conforming to the Truth, but are examples of the weakness of flesh, the conformation to examples set by lower powers, and a turning away from the God that is within us all. The Truth to be acted upon is that God is within each and every one of us, is no further from us than our own breath, and can be experienced by any one. The Light of God shines deep inside us...let us stop for a moment with our words and quotes, with our opinions and books. The Truth to be known is the silence of the infinite that is ours when we close our eyes and calm ourselves to simply be with the One. I wish for nothing more. This is my aspiration and journey.

Russ,

 

The specific truth we are talking about is: man's acting in conformity with the external universe so he can live within it. This means that its opposite is also true: man's acting in nonconformity with the external universe can't live within it. It is not possible to survive in complete nonconfromity with the external universe. All men act on that truth, and we can see that any effort by man to not conform, therefore, becomes the source for all of man's problems. (... lack of love, racism, greed, ...) Yes, these problems are a weakness of the flesh. These problems always exist when we try to make ourselves autonomous from God.

 

We are all looking for a little peace and quiet, but I do not suspect any one wants to be doomed to experience eternal silence. That would be hell, don't ya think?

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The specific truth we are talking about is: man's acting in conformity with the external universe so he can live within it. This means that its opposite is also true: man's acting in nonconformity with the external universe can't live within it. It is not possible to survive in complete nonconfromity with the external universe.

 

“Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s” (Mark 12.17). DavidK you conform to the external so you sacrifice the Christ within to be crucifified once again.

 

“We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin....So you must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus” (Ro. 6. 6,11)

 

Enslaved to sin one has conformed to the external, material realm, DavidK why preach about this conformity and not how to be alive to the God in the Christ within? By an act of will, one makes a full surrender of the self within to God, in this way you will be able to overcome external sin.

 

“If my kingdom were of this world my servants would fight …but my kingdom is not from here” (John 18.36 NKJV,) DavidK you are fighting for an external self-righteous position, when you should be searching within for God's Kingdom. Many here have given you good advice on how to experience Christ within, but you keep going externally to conform to Caesar. Jesus constantly reiterated free choice so that is your choice. Jesus because of his external nonconformity was crucified.

 

“For if you live according to the flesh, you will die, but if, by the Spirit, you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God” (Ro. 8.13-14).

 

DavidK we love you and want you to enjoy the Bliss of the Spirit, but you keep giving self righteous platitudes why you can't surrender inside to God and must continue with your old self. Surrender to Christ within and find your new self in a loving, happy relationship

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Soma,

 

davidk will remain davidk. The point I am attempting to make is similar to a comment made by Mark Twain. To paraphrase, he said he was "amazed at how much his parents had learned while he was growing up". We are, as God created us, with individual differences. There is a certain wisdom in this. I was taught this in Sunday School at age 9 in the late 1950's.

 

There is, however, a line to be drawn. These differences cannot be used to do harm to each other. Take, for example, "gay marriage". If you look at the California Supreme Court decision in 2007, you see something remarkable. The majority decision was that gays were being denied rights under the equal protection clause of the constitution. Their reasoning did not stop there. They then looked at the cases where gay couples were raising children. They concluded that the children in these families were also being denied their basic rights ... that the children should know that their parents are "married".

 

Ambiguity simply means that there is more than one way of construing the world. Here, I am going to leave myself wide open for criticism, but I have to say it ... God is God. I am not God. If I could fully understand God, I would have no need for God.

 

Minsocal

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Dear Soma,

 

God made man to conform to what He created for him to live in. Some men may choose to argue nonconformity, but they can't actually live within their argument. This is really very unambiguous.

 

You are a little short sighted if you are arguing this means anything self-righteous.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

God made man to conform to what He created for him to live in. Some men may choose to argue nonconformity, but they can't actually live within their argument. This is really very unambiguous.

 

This is an interesting statement, David. How do you or any member or clergy of any faith know what God intended, did, asks of us, said, requires, etc.? I find such statements an indication of having personal knowledge of God that others here lack. Could you share your source for such statements? Personal experiences? Divine revelation? Or are these inferences drawn from human writings and words attributed to Jesus? All the same, what is it that YOU say? What is it that God says to YOU? What does your heart say? Speak from your heart, David, not from intellect. This is what matters when we speak of things of the Spirit.

Edited by Russ
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is an interesting statement, David. How do you or any member or clergy of any faith know what God intended, did, asks of us, said, requires, etc.? I find such statements an indication of having personal knowledge of God that others here lack. Could you share your source for such statements? Personal experiences? Divine revelation? Or are these inferences drawn from human writings and words attributed to Jesus? All the same, what is it that YOU say? What is it that God says to YOU? What does your heart say? Speak from your heart, David, not from intellect. This is what matters when we speak of things of the Spirit.

Well Russ, I don't believe this requires any special knowledge. God created the fish so they may conform to survive in water, or birds in the air; the part of the created universe that is their environment. I would think it could be considered just as reasonable for Him to have created man to behave in a manner so as to survive in his part of the environment.

God created man with the ability to reason. It is knowledge for any man to personally be able to reason by just a simple observation of what truly exists.

 

I hope that clears it up.

 

Dk

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sounds like Buddhism, it is nice DavidK that you use Buddhist techniques for seeing God. The Buddha did not give divine absolutes, but qualities to train the observer to observe. (mindfullness) We can learn from every religion, if we have an open mind. God is found in all things, and is in human consciousness at all places and times. We need only turn within, and realize that the Divine is already present there. He is not just in paper sheets.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

(snip)

We are all looking for a little peace and quiet, but I do not suspect any one wants to be doomed to experience eternal silence. That would be hell, don't ya think?

 

 

Not at all David. Eternal silence is present even now as I type among all this noise. You seem to confuse hell with heaven.

 

Joseph

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share


×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

terms of service