Can’t we all just get along?

Can’t we all just get along during the presidential elections?

The following is a political conversation between me and a republican friend. It started with me asking who he was voting for in the presidential election. He responded that it depended on who their running mate would be. So I inquired, “If Hillary teams up with the right one, then you’ll vote for her, right? “Hell no!” was his emphatic response. This led into the following text messages:

Me: And remember, I still love you, even though you’re a republican. You can’t help it, bro. Lol

‘Inferiors may Disagree’ (his chosen alias):

So you’re admitting you’ve dumbed down to the ‘dumbacrat’ level?

Me: :) if I did that, then you’d disown me. I’m messing with you just like I would any democrat. I actually choose not to choose. I don’t get involved in the squabbles of this physical world.

‘Inferiors may Disagree’:

I wouldn’t disown you, but I would ask myself ‘why, I ever thought Mike was intelligent?! Where do I go from here, now that I’ve let myself down by associating with an unintelligent being?’

Me: I forgot to thank you for that compliment yesterday about me being smart. Thanks.

Now image how peaceful your life would be were you to let loose of just a few opinions? I’ll give you an example, but remember, I could just as easily give examples of democrats as well. Anyway, this is why I choose not to get involved. Like I once was, and most republicans are, you’re probably under the misguided opinion that this is a Christian nation. This is because it perfectly aligns to their beliefs; it’s what we want to believe. What we want to believe far outweighs all other notions, truth or otherwise.

And I’m sure, you get upset when democrats claim this country wasn’t founded on the principles of Christianity. One day I decided to do my own investigation, and I no longer believe as I once did; I understand the intent of the Founding Fathers. They, being fed-up with religious domination over government in the ‘old world’, established our great nation with absolutely no connection to any religion. Allowing our government to govern people based on the ‘rights of man’ through the dictates of reason, without superstition, while still maintaining the liberty for all men to worship as they pleased. I believe it’s obvious the Founding Fathers believed in God, so I don’t side with democrats either – particularly when they adamantly want to remove all references to the Divine. If I choose a side I – which I usually don’t – it’s always based on any truth which I’ve discovered through my own research – it’s never based on anything presented by the skewed media.

‘Inferiors may Disagree’:

Yeah, I’m aware, but I choose to side with the lesser of both evils.

Me: God bless you bro. That, in and of itself, is the crux of all conflicts of every age. The distinction of good vs evil – ever since the garden. Don’t you think there are good democrats, who sincerely make their decisions based on the same ‘logical reasons’ as you? It’s unfortunate that ever since Jefferson and Adams competed for the presidency, this ‘us vs them’ mentality has prevailed. They were just as ugly about it, two hundred years ago, as we are today . The papers actually quoted preachers exclaiming, “A vote for Jefferson is a vote for the Devil.” How is that any different from the fundamentalist who’ve called Obama the antichrist for seven years?

‘Inferiors may Disagree’:

Oh, I know, but I’m speaking of the lesser of both evils in regards to benefits to me and my family.

Me:

Oh, so the real root of the problem is selfishness. Everyone’s only interested in their own agendas and protecting their own interests. :) I know you’re not selfish, but, I still think there’s much truth to that. I know smart democrats who call you ignorant, just like you were implying about me; but I think it’s time to stop entrenching ourselves against one another and start working together.

My dad was so funny, through the entire eight year term of Bush he used to preach – especially when someone criticized his boy, G.W. – “There shouldn’t be any democrats or republicans; we’re all Americans. And everyone should support our president, regardless of his affiliation. But boy, did he became indignant when I reminded him of his self-righteous proclamations once Obama got into office. He said, “Bull shit, I don’t have to support that no good son of bitch!” He refused to adhere to the standards which he himself expected democrats to live up to.

‘Inferiors may Disagree’:

Sounds like your dad was a great man! Democrats only do good if you’re into socialism, the welfare system, abortion, open boarders, political correctness, etc., and they’re against our military, defending our nation – basically all the things which are in the best interest of this country.

Me: I love you, bro. Can have your permission to post this conversation on my website? And if so how do you wish to be labeled anonymous, fanatical republican nut-job, or by name?

‘Inferiors may Disagree’:

Go for it, but label me as ‘Inferiors may Disagree’. [END]

If we could all learn to express our opinions and concerns without the added insults and biased positions, we might be able to work together to build a brighter future for our children. Until that time we continue to stand on one side of the fence or the other and hurl insults and anathemas at one another while making little to no progress. It’s the ego which keeps us spinning in circles in the same spot.

Michael Blakeslee ‘Never accept any limitations in an unlimited Universe.’

Have you hugged your homeless dude today?

Have you hugged your homeless dude today?Something I never imagined I’d ever experience in my life; but yesterday I found myself hugging a dirty, smelly homeless dude named Mike. He said my little expression of kindness made up for the rudeness of several other mean people.

What really amazed me about him was his love and forgiveness for those rude people. He said, “I know they don’t really mean it; they just don’t know how to handle me. So it’s easier to get angry about my presence than treat me humanely. But I know later they feel sorry about the way they treated me. And I feel sorry for them.”homeless pastor

I thought here’s Mr. “spiritual guru” learning Universal Truths from a homeless guy, isn’t that great? If you pay attention, you’ll discover God uses any and every opportunity to teach us something. Someone once said, “The Universe will toss you off a cliff, if it thought you’d wake up on your way down.”

I actually wondered if this guy might be one of those undercover angels, you know the ones placed here to test our spiritual resolve. The entire conversation had a rather deep impact on me; I thought about it all day. Although his display of gratitude contradicts what I’m about to say, I believe my encounter with Mike had a much grander impact on the future of my life than it did on his.

He read my shirt and said, “Oh, Flying J, I just love that place. Dale The manager there was very nice to me when I needed a shower. I hadn’t showered in four months, and I needed one really bad. A driver offered me one of his, but I wasn’t able to use it right away. Dale was so kind; he signed the receipt, and said I could use it anytime later. He was so wonderful to me, just like you’ve been to me today, Mike. I’m gonna pray for you, just like I’ve been praying for Dale.”

This is the point where he got real emotional and stretched out his arms towards me. I had a split second to decide, am I going to shun this man who may be an undercover angel, or am I going to – right in front of all these passing customers – reciprocate, and hug him back. Well, I’m proud to say I chose the latter, and I didn’t feel like anyone thought less of me for it either.

You know, I believe the Beatles were right when they said, “All you need is love.” Mike didn’t need my condemnation or my condescending judgments. He’s well aware of the mistakes which have led him to where he’s at now. I’m sure he’s had to listen to that inner voice of damnation for decades. I often think there’s a reason many of them would prefer beer over food – anything for a little peace from that barrage of self-condemnation. What he needed was the same thing we all need, for someone to simply extol a little human kindness. To quote Nick Nolte from the movie, ‘The Peaceful Warrior’: “The ones who are the toughest to love are the ones who need it the most.”

Michael Blakeslee, Never accept limitations in an unlimited Universe.

P.S. If you click on the picture it take you to a FB link of a pastor who dressed like a homeless man to see how his congregation would react to his presence in their church. It’s quite shocking.

The Crisis with ISIS and the Terror in the Mirror

coexist

The Crisis with ISIS and the Terror in the Mirror
I watched a documentary relating the conditions within Raqa since the hostile takeover of ISIS. I was surprised to realize that not everyone was in agreement with the acts of their oppressors. The man being interviewed was so despondent and fearful that he requested a voice alteration and a fictitious name. To my amazement, it revealed an entire community of innocent people living in fear and anxiety – no different than any neighborhood in America that might have been conquered by a terrorist regime. These are the people we forget as we clump them all together as one fanatical unit.

+
This frightened man described his indignation towards this uninvited religious terrorist regime. He openly discussed the significant impact their presence has brought upon his community: issues like the price of food going up 300%, children being exposed to public executions, and longing for the day when he could again walk down the street without fearfully looking over his shoulder. He also mentioned the minor implications as well, like how disgruntled he was for being forced to grow the religiously mandated beard. ???????????????????????????????????????

 

The camera crew interviewed shop owners who were implicitly informed that certain woman’s clothing could no longer be displayed in their stores, but had to be kept in the storage areas; and anyone who bought those particular outfits was prohibited from wearing them in public.

+
They showed some explosive footage of ISIS demolishing a mosque. It struck me as odd that a Muslim group would destroy a Muslim edifice – that is until the narrator explained that it was constructed by a divergent Muslim faction. “Oh, if it was built by those dissenters, than it’s nothing more than a slaughterhouse for pigs. Blow it up for Allah!”

+
Another disparaging aspect of this unfortunate crisis is that ISIS is constantly proselyting their innocent children. They advise these naive children that they’re their brothers, and give them the impression that they’re the heroes of the world – fighting the bad guys. Their ultimate goal is to supply fresh recruits for their religious, militant faction; but they’re just as happy creating spies, as well. They offer money to any child with information against anyone speaking ill of their organization.

+
As I witnessed an ISIS execution taking place in the street, the question struck me: “Who does this remind you of: ‘the Spanish Inquisition’? The more I considered it, the more it rang true. Consider it, if you know anything about that disparaging period of our history. The church of the Dark Ages not only dictated dress codes and demeanor, it eventually overpowered and usurped the authority of most European kings. Talk about I.S. (a religious Islamic state), three hundred years ago, our civilization had a C.C. (not just a state, but a religious Christian Continent).

http://www.dreamstime.com/-image22447076
Ask yourself why Napoleon asked the pope to be present at his crowning ceremony, but wouldn’t allow him to preside over it – as was customary? Right in front of the pope, Napoleon crowned himself as if to say, “I don’t need your sanctioning approval.” Because, for the pope to crown the king or emperor, at that time, signified the power thereby was granted through the authority of the church. This little symbolic act gave supremacy to the church over the temporal throne. And should the church decide to, they had the divine right to revoke that authority.

+
The church even waged war against their own countrymen for dissenting from conventional religious views. The church of Medieval times would accept no other interpretation of their religion; hence, they had no apprehension destroying a church built by a dissenting sect. The Christian chant of the church at that time was: “to kill an infidel is not murder, but the pathway to heaven.” This related to Muslims, Jews, and any Christian with divergent views.

+
As John Draper reported, “With such savage eagerness did [The Spanish Inquisition] carry out its object of protecting the interests of religion that between 1481 and 1808, it had punished 340,000 persons, and of these, nearly thirty-two thousand had been burnt.1” These were not outsiders, these were fellow countrymen and women.

+
Thousands were publicly executed for disagreeing with the supreme power of the church. Innocent people burned alive at the stake with the same compassion as today’s ISIS executioners. And many of these poor souls were the result of a Spanish Inquisition informant. But they didn’t do it for the money; no, they did it for absolution of their sins, and even sometimes just out of pure selfish motives, like jealousy.

+
Once someone rolled-over on you, you were abducted from your family and placed in a dungeon for months, or even years. Your family would be left destitute, as the church refused to aid the devil’s offspring. You weren’t allowed to know what you were being accused of, or even who accused you. The Spanish Inquisition would just continually torture you until you finally admitted to anything which would bring about an end to the anguish they were inflicting upon you. But this only led to the next step in the judicial process: public execution. Can you start to see why our Founding Fathers laid provisions against such practices in our Bill of Rights? I guarantee you this despondent history was weighing heavily on their minds as they crafted our Constitution, as well as, the Bill of Rights.

+
http://www.dreamstime.com/-image3328672The only difference between the I.S. of Raqa and the S.I. of Europe – besides the use of machineguns – is really just a few meager centuries. The Spanish Inquisition didn’t have modern weapons of warfare; and they didn’t have video recorders to document their cruelties. But had such things been available, they would’ve utilized them for the same reason ISIS uses them today: to impart the kind of fear which promotes adherence. And just like ISIS, the Spanish Inquisition believed God had sanctioned them to execute these cruelties on His creation and they would’ve also enjoyed documenting it as well. Just like many of the Nazis cruel human experiments were filmed.

+
I’m not making light of the atrocities taking place on that side of the world, they are horrific and shameful; and I’m not saying we shouldn’t get involved. I’m saying, we should remember where we came from. These people are simply three hundred years behind us on the Evolutionary scale. You know, if we’re honest with ourselves, we would admit that we too have a long ways to go in our social development. If history repeats itself, and it usually does, there exists the possibility that somewhere around the year 2076 some non-conforming, intellectual Muslims will unite together and initiate a new country with its own constitution based on the principles of Democracy. They will rise up and overthrow the tyranny of these oppressive fanatics just like our ancestors.

+
This is just something for us to reflect on, instead of mindlessly chanting the ol’ cliché, “All they understand is violence; so bomb them back to the stone ages.” Where would we be if some culture more advanced than our own had decided to destroy us before the birth of Jefferson, Adams, Washington, Paine, and all the other great Founding Fathers? Imagine where we’d be if, during that long, dark period of the Spanish Inquisition, some alien race, superior to our own, had decided to turn Europe into a ‘parking lot’. America wouldn’t exist if some civilization, grander than our own, had taken the primitive approach of solving everything through violence and blowing Medieval Europe off the map.

+
So what is the answer? I don’t know. But I know it resides on a higher plane than primitive, simplistic, imprudent violence. A friend of mine, Steve, came up with the best solution I’ve heard so far:

+
“Do not bomb the hell out of them. Contain them until the innocent people get tired of this oppression and rise up and overthrow this terrorism – just like the American Revolution of two hundred years ago. We would set up boats and anti-aircraft all around the area and not allow anyone out until the issue was resolved internally. Certainly, we would be humanitarians and allow aid, food, and medical supplies through the barricade, but no one comes out until the violence has ended.”

+
As I said, it’s the best answer I’ve heard yet; however, I’m not sure it covers all the issues. For example: I don’t think it’s very humanitarian of us to sit on the sidelines like ‘Hunger Games’ watching innocent people die, while waiting for the outcome. I think as the more advanced and ‘civilized’ culture we have a moral obligation to God and humanity itself to make an attempt to save the innocent victims. What if the revolutionists fail? What then? Do we resort back to the old ‘bomb the hell out of ’em decree’?

http://www.dreamstime.com/-image2145718
I’m not pretending to have all the answers; it’s a precarious situation to say the least. But we should keep an open mind and an optimistic view of the future. We should be on the look out for victims – like this unnamed, innocent man – who desire to get out from underneath the terrorist regime, and who only desire to live in peace. We cannot call ourselves the more civilized and better culture if we’re OK with killing innocent people along with their perpetrators like collateral damage. In all the years of senseless violence, the ends have never justified the means.

 

Michael Blakeslee: Never accept limitations in an unlimited Universe.

 

Footnotes:
1. ‘History of the Conflict between Religion and Science’ by John William Draper pg. 207

Did Jesus really say love your enemies?

Did He mean it, or was it just another cliché religious people spew out? He also said why do you call me lord, but do not the things I have commanded you? (Luke 6:46) I believe it’s indicative of His intent for us to practice what He preached.

If Jesus really said, “Love your enemies,” why do I find posts by people who call him Lord, Lord to the effect of “All Muslims must die!”? Or the loving signs the Westboro Baptists hold up in their pickets, depicting God as a hater of His creation.

Aside from the fact that we are offering ‘evil for evil’ and disobeying Jesus’ direct orders, we are also incorporating several innocent people into our hate, people whose only crime was being born into a particular belief structure which differs from our own. They know nothing beyond the narrow, bigoted beliefs programmed into their brains by parents, priests, and politicians.

I’d like to ask that you consider: What was Jesus referring to when he said, “Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?” It’s pretty simple; it’s the finale to ‘The Beatitudes’ – arguably one of the greatest discourses ever delivered. Although I quoted it from Luke, for our exploration of ‘The Beatitudes,’ I’d like to direct your attention to the more comprehensive version found in the gospel of Mathew.

So what did Jesus say before capping it off with, ‘Don’t bother calling me Lord unless you’re willing to do as I say’? Did He say, “You must believe I am the son of God?” Did He say, “You must be washed in my blood?” What He said, prior to this proclamation, can be studied in Matthew’s chapters 5-7; and I implore you to do so. I’m only going to hit a few important topics, which need careful consideration:

5:3) Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. (The absence of ego, pride, and arrogance – attitudes not found in heaven)

5:5) Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. (I know as Christians, we’re not interested in inheriting the earth, but it is our inheritance if we are meek. Do you suppose being meek means hating and killing people who are different from us?)

5:7) Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. (Would you like to obtain mercy for your mistakes? It’s simple: Be merciful to others. Many times you see Jesus using this ‘give and it shall be given to you’ concept.)

5:8) Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. (How shall we be entitled to see God – by the work of Calvary’s cross? Jesus says if your heart is pure, you will see God.)

5:9) Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the sons of God. (Several people asked Jesus ‘what must I do to be saved?’ and His response was never ‘simple faith’ but to do something. What must we do to be called the children of God? Be a peacemaker. Are we promoting peace and acting like children of God, or are we perpetuating hate and violence?)

5:38-42) You have heard that it was said, ‘Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.’ But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. (There is no provision made for killing our enemies.) Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you. (‘Give to the one who asks’ makes no provision for “well, I know he’s only going to blow it on booze!”)

5:43-48) You have heard that it was said, (I love when Jesus says this. He may not have come to abolish the law, but He sure did a lot of upgrading.) ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. (How can you become a Son of the Heavenly Father? By loving your enemies and praying for those who abuse you, that’s how. Again, neither a word about faith nor the blood atoning sacrifice.) If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. (Our righteousness must exceed the pagans as well as the Pharisees.)

In 7:9-14 Jesus teaches us how to pray, and I would like to focus on the last part of this prayer:

Forgive our sins, as we forgive those who have sinned against us… For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. (So, how do we obtain God’s forgiveness, by being washed in the blood? By forgiving others! And why will God withhold His forgiveness, because we have rejected His Son? Because we have not forgiven others! Jesus goes into great detail regarding this concept in Matt 18:21-35; ending it with, “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart.”)

7:1) Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. (Again this concept of what goes around comes around, or better yet; what you put out there you will receive back – ‘Give, and it shall be given to you’ works for the negative as well as the positive.)

5:21-23) Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’ (And He just spelled out the ‘will of God’ for us in ‘The Beatitudes.’)

Paul said, “We are saved by grace, and not by works,” yet it appears as though Jesus may be contradicting Paul. Everything in ‘The Beatitudes’ seems to indicate a need for our participation.

Yes, I know how difficult it is to love someone who hates you; however, it is commanded of us; and you cannot circumvent a flood by pouring more water on it. We cannot overcome the hate in this world by offering it more hate. We must strive to find ways of acting like the peacemakers Jesus expected the children of God to be.

So we can offer all the opposing views we like, but the bottom line is this: We must ask ourselves two fundamental questions. Do we, or do we not, believe Jesus said these things, and if we do, then how can we work these virtues into our lives? I recommend we pray God give us the strength to be truly Christ like.

If we are supposed to love our enemies, why have we killed so many Muslims, ‘heretics,’ atheists, various ‘dissenting believers,’ scientists, and ‘witches’?

I feel I must end with an attempt to describe the beauty and joy that come from forgiveness. As Jesus said, “As you give you will receive. Forgive and be forgiven.” Isn’t that all we really want? You may say all we want is love; however, without forgiveness, we are incapable of experiencing love. First, we must experience the forgiveness for the things which hold our mind in bondage to guilt. It is this guilt, which repels love as we cry out, “I’m not worthy!”

And all that is required to experience this forgiveness is to offer it. It’s as simple as that. As you learn to hold yourself in a state of constant forgiveness, you’ll discover a new world awaits you. One of the first things you’ll find is an easiness of mind; a lessening of the burden of anger, hate, and stress, which our souls pay a heavy tax to shoulder. You’ll also discover people respond in like manner. No, not always, but you’ll find more people willing to hold the door for you – agreeable people yielding out of politeness to you – and most importantly, a general willingness to forgive you.

As a professional driver, I can attest that as I forgive motorist for cutting me off and whatnot, I find when I make a mistake and cut someone else off, by misjudging their distance or speed, they simply go around me; I hear no honking of horns, nor do I see any fingers out the window. The world truly is as we create it.

It is not my intention to neither trample the Cross nor profane the blood of Jesus. By all means continue in your belief and worship of these things. However, I do intend to stress my conviction that we may engulf ourselves in as much of His blood as we desire, but we may find it to no avail, if we do not practice the art of forgiveness as Jesus taught in the first three Gospels. And we stand the chance of hearing “Depart from Me; I never knew you” if we stubbornly refuse.

I will end with a quote from ‘A Course in Miracles,’ lesson 122 Forgiveness offers everything I want:

“What could you want forgiveness cannot give? Do you want peace? Forgiveness offers it. Do you want happiness, a quiet mind, a certainty of purpose, and a sense of worth and beauty that transcends the world? Do you want care and safety, and the warmth of sure protection always? Do you want a quietness that cannot be disturbed, a gentleness that never can be hurt, a deep, abiding comfort, and a rest so perfect it can never be upset? All this forgiveness offers you, and more.”

Michael Blakeslee

 

Will God really destroy the wisdom of man?

I posted a comment to someone on Amazon and received this comment from a person who refers to himself as the ‘Voice of truth’:

“Look Michael, or should I say ET?? Do you also believe in UFOs and there’s a strong possibility that you idolize Stephen Hawking as well…Allowing your intelligence to lead you in matters of faith and/or spirituality is mistake number one. “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.”(Cor.1:1-19)
Bottom line, be real careful about who or what you place stock in, it’s your eternity that you are taking chances with.”

I’m not relaying my original post here, because I failed to make the correlation between my first comment and his unsolicited response. However, I do want to share my response to this post which he has failed to comment on yet.

So can you give me a rough idea of when God is going to – as the scripture indicates – “destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate?” Incidentally, did you know we’ve been living in the ‘end times’ for two thousand years? – A third of our existence. Any ways: I know the church tried to fulfill this prophecy by killing as many intelligent men as they could during the Dark Ages, any man who claimed the Earth was round and not the center of the universe. (Hmmm, I wonder why they called the era which the church dominated “the Dark Ages”)

Even after Magellan physically proved the Earth was indeed round; the church still resisted the Truth of it for another five years. Truth is truth my friend, whether you discover it by your heart or your brain. Science fought hard to bring us indoor plumbing and other means of sanitation in order to help eradicate the black plague, even though the church insisted it was the wrath of God. Now we’re building space stations and creating the big bang on an infantile scale proving the existence of the God particle, which is holding this entire thing together; so exactly when will God stop the evolution of intelligence? You make it appear as though God is against wisdom; if you do a search of the word, you’ll find it 222 times in the Bible. Knowledge shows up 169 times.

First of all, if you go look up that scripture (Isaiah 29:14), you’ll find Paul doing what so many modern people like to do: dramatizing and overemphasizing the point. It’s not a global prophecy; it’s a very specific prophecy directed at a certain city.  And Paul, what it actually says is “Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvelous work among this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder: for the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, and the understanding of their prudent men shall be hid.”

Go read I Kings chapter 3 entitled “Solomon’s prayer for wisdom” sometime.

How about Luke’s 1:17 prophecy of how John the Baptist shall make the people ready for the Lord: “And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”

Why did James 1:5 say “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraided not; and it shall be given him.”

Here is the beauty of an infallible ancient text: We can contradict each other all day long. In rebuttal to your scripture, I could quote, Luke 2:40 in reference to Jesus as a child: “And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon him.”

Luke 2:52 “And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man.”

When is God going to destroy the wisdom of Jesus as Paul has either misquoted or has been misinterpreted at some point over the last two thousand years?

And Here’s some more fun we could have: You might say Heli was the name of Jesus’ grandpa (Luke 3:23), but I would say his name was Jacob (Matt 1:16). Before you dismiss this as a simple misprint, run a name by name Bible study comparison between these two gospels. You’ll discover one list is mysteriously longer than the other, and aside from David and Joseph, there is only one other name who matches between the two.

You may say, “Big deal!” You’re right it is a very big deal. The anonymous writers of these two gospels were well aware how vital it was to trace the heritage of Jesus back to King David in order to substantiate the Messiah claim. And both did a great job of validating this important prophecy; however, since they both contradict each other, you have to wonder, which is inspired of God and, which came from His nemesis.

And if one were proven to be uninspired, would we remove it from the canon? Would they shorten it to a three-way  gospel or would they want to continue in the tradition of the early fathers who believed they had to narrow the eight gospels down to 4 on account of the four corners of the Earth, hence adding one back from the apocrypha writings?

Alternatively, with the new-found wisdom of science proving the Earth has no corners; would they narrow it down to one gospel? I think we all know which one that would be. The only one which speaks of ‘being born again’; the only one containing the one phrase, “I am the only way to the Father” – the only one where Jesus continually contradicts the other three gospels by saying believing in Him is the only way to salvation; when in the others, Jesus tells people “go sin no more, sell all you have and give to the poor, pick up your cross and follow me” as well as other requirements placed on the believer, which many today would call ‘works’.

You see; we believe there was a tree of some kind of knowledge, and the releasing of this knowledge into the world was a very bad thing. Hence, knowledge=sin=bad=going to hell. However, the interesting thing is this: The clergy, the monarchs and the politicians who have all profited from keeping us shackled to this archaic superstition have never stopped seeking knowledge and wisdom; they just don’t want us finding for it. Because on the day we do, they shall surely die. Why do you suppose the church fought so ardently to oppose translating the scriptures into the common language?

So perhaps now you can begin to understand why the clergy have pushed for unwavering and unquestioning faith for two thousand years. I’ll leave you with a quote from one of those ancient supposed religions of the devil:

Believe nothing just because a so-called wise person said it. Believe nothing just because a belief is generally held. Believe nothing just because it is said in ancient books. Believe nothing just because it is said to be of divine origin. Believe nothing just because someone else believes it. Believe only what you, yourself test and judge to be true… Buddha

Was I defending the devil? You decide:

I met an eccentric hard core Christian, who surprisingly considered dating me. But she just couldn’t get around the fact that I told her honestly; “I don’t believe Jesus is the only way.” She had agreed to go on a date with me after making this statement, but as that fateful day approached; she had a change of heart. The following is a hilarious rendition of our text messages about it. It is quite comical, please enjoy.?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

Her:      I’ve been thinking about this all day & we CANNOT date.

Me:      Ok, can we at least be friends?

Her:      We can be Friends, I Won’t Sleep With You!!! But we can hang out at the pool but as far as Dating, I just Don’t See That Happening we are Different People & It Just Wouldn’t be Right the Fact that You Don’t Believe Jesus is the Only Way Is Something We Don’t Have In common & for me that Is Something HUGE!! JESUS Should Always be #1 & you don’t see things the same way as I do.

Me:      I don’t blame you. When I was hard core like you, I was the same way. But why do you have to assure me you won’t sleep with me? Did I come across like that? Did you act like you would?

Her:      Well I am a Hardcore Christian & I Want a Solid Rock Christian Not someone who Is Lukewarm you’re either in All the Way with Jesus or you’re Not. I’m just making it Clear; I’ve been Talked into it Before & I Need to Stand My ground about it!! No Offense, just Want to remain Celibate for The One.

Me:      Good luck…

Her:      I don’t need Luck, I Know that The Right One that comes Along Won’t Push the Subject or Push me to do Something that is Not Right In Gods Eyes.

Me:      I’m sorry I meant to say good night.

(This is where it gets really juicy! I couldn’t let it rest; so I kicked it off the following day with the following)

Note for future reference: she was always referring to “the enemy” or the devil using people; she even mentioned that “the enemy used my mom to cause an issue between us.” The devil didn’t use her in his fiendish plan, only her mother.

—————————————————————————————–
Me:      Hey queenie, just so we’re clear, contrary to your narcissism; not every guy is trying to sleep with you. And just so you’re aware, if some smooth talking guy schmoozed his way into your pants once, I’m certain it’ll happen again. As for me, if “the enemy” wanted to “use” me to cause you to fornicate; don’t you think, between him as an angel of light & my past experience as a born again Bible thumping Christian, together we could have come up with all the perfect Bible phrases so “the enemy” could weasel his way into your panties again. But no, I told you the basic truth about my beliefs because like you, I am zealous about them.

Also another psychology lesson: I’m not surprised to hear you were tricked into pre-marital sex. Aside from the fact that you’re bubbling over with sexuality & I can virtually smell your pheromones – the basic fact that you have to fight so hard against it is a dead ringer. Your response to my “do you wanna be friendly” question sounded as if I asked to be fuck buddies; however, primarily what gives you away is, like I told you the other day; “whatever front someone puts up, you can be sure the opposite is lurking beneath the facade”; even more so when you work so hard to convince someone of it. So, what is the opposite of a pious, reserved, prude front? Hmmm…

Carl Jung said “What u resists persists!” When you fight something you send it energy & help it grow, when you turn your back on it & say I don’t even acknowledge it, you stop feeding it. The truth is; we’re all born with base survival & procreate drives put in our brains & who did that – not the devil? The problem lies when we act like animals over these instincts because we have something they don’t – a rational brain. This is the part that tells your primitive brain “don’t sleep around” or “I know you’re in survival mode because my job is in jeopardy, but it’s still not right to lie your way through it.”

The sooner people stop blaming the devil & start taking responsibility for their own issues, the sooner they will discover the inner strength of God to overcome their personal issues. But as long as they continue to point the finger at the devil & say he made me do it; they will forever remain a victim of circumstances outside of their control – constantly begging God to give them the strength to overcome “the enemy” out there. God bless you in your endeavors & I hope we can be friends.

(You wouldn’t think she would have the gumption to respond after that but she did and it gets even better.)

Her:      I don’t know what u want to hear Plane n Simple U don’t Believe Jesus is the Only Way & as Far as Sex goes I Do Make it Very Clear Whether or Not I Discern That The guy I’m Speaking to Has that urgency or Not!! & as far as The Enemy is Concerned He Will & Has Used People to Do Things They Shouldn’t Do & Yes We Are to Take Responsibility for Our Own actions & Of course The Enemy is Always Pointing Fingers. I’m Not Friends with the Enemy & I Hate Him!! You don’t Believe Jesus is The Only Way & Quite Honestly You’ll Have to Answer to That just like we All will Have to Answer for Our Lives & Accounts held.

Me:      I don’t understand why you keep judging & holding that against me. I never said Jesus wasn’t the way for you & countless others; I just believe this excludes a lot of people & I believe they deserve an opportunity just like those of us who were fortuitous enough to be born in a Christian nation & were programmed to be believe a certain thing before we were old enough to question it. It’s just not fair, so if I wanna believe those who are excluded have an alternative option; why should your judgmental God send me to hell for being an optimist?

I believe Christianity is good & all Christians are saved & going to heaven. I also believe it helps millions of people; it helps people be more loving, it helps drunkards put down the bottle, it’s even helping you curve your sexual addiction. But please stop judging me for your own sake. Jesus said with the same measure you judge it will be judged back on you. Besides, I could say that when a Christian sins he is crucifying the lord again & you would say; well Jesus said a righteous man falls 7xs & gets up 7xs, but then I would say Heb 10:26 says “after knowing the truth & sinning again there is no more forgiveness.” So you see; we could contradict each other all day from scripture. Why do you think there are 20000 different Christian factions, all who claim to be the only true church, while all others are destined for hell?

(She still doesn’t quit)

Her:      I’m not judging you just stating facts.

Me:      Well, let me tell you about another faction who was also just stating facts; they were called the Spanish Inquisition & God granted them the right to torture & murder thousands upon thousands for simply questioning things. People like myself who held beliefs outside of conventional views of the time & who felt the need to question those long standing views which were strangling the people. But seriously, again I never want to dissuade you from your beliefs; I truly believe God has called me to encourage people to be more accepting of others beliefs. & in all sincerity I really like you, if you don’t want to date that’s cool; but I enjoy your personality & these lovely discussions; so I would really like to remain friends.

Her:      All I’m saying, is I stand My Ground about my Belief. It Took A Man to Lay His Life Down for me & I am Forever Going to Remember Him, His Name Is Jesus!! & No one can Make Me Change How I feel about that!! & His Sacrifice, No Buddha Or Yoda or Sasquatch can Make me Feel how I feel about My Jesus And I will! And Honestly I just Can’t Wrap my Head around why you or any one would say Jesus isn’t the Only Way.

Me:      Think about this: what might your mother’s beliefs entail, had it not been for the Spanish conquest of the 16th century? (Her mother is a direct descendant of the Mayans) What would her religion be if those righteous men hadn’t crossed the ocean, murder 2 million Mexicans, stole their religious artifacts, to be melted into gold coins, burn their religious books, & force the love of Jesus upon them?

Her:      Well we live what we learn & if we walk away from what we were taught then that’s something we will have to be accountable for And Again had it Not been for God the Creator of All Things None of Us Would be here & if it weren’t For Jesus I WOULDN’T BE A FORGIVEN SINNER!! AND THIS GOES FOR ANY ONE ELSE WHO WANTS TO SAY THAT JESUS ISN’T THE ONLY WAY! JESUS WALKED ON WATER BUDDHA, YODA & MOHAMMAD ALI HAVEN’T, NOR DID THEY. I’m just letting it be known I won’t let my guard down when it Comes to My Jesus.

(Not once in this babbling did she even remotely come close to answering my question. We are all now dumber for having read this rebuttal.)

Me:      Oh I am well aware, you have been more than sufficiently clear with your proclamations. I promise I won’t take your Jesus away from you.

Her:      Were u trying to say your jobs in jeopardy? (Wow, how far back was this comment of mine; but more importantly: how did she miss the point?)

Me:      No, just an example of an unfortunate event which might provoke a person’s subconscious to enter the “fight or flight mode” causing one to freak & contemplate the idea of lying. Then it’s up to said person’s frontal lobes to rationally say “no, lying is wrong in the eyes of the Lord.” What you might call “the temptation of the devil” & the battle between darkness & light. But I would draw your attention to James 1:14-15 “each one is tempted by his OWN EVIL DESIRE (not Satan)”

Her:      Well, yes Sin is In Nature because of Our Imperfections but we are to Look out for the Enemy, Satan, he isn’t a Friend; Therefore the Enemy who is Out to Kill Steal and Destroy. I don’t know why You’re Defending Satan!! You’re either for God Or Against Him! & from the Looks of it; you want to Quote Scripture & Yet Jesus isn’t #1 in Your Life Sounds Like Pharisee to Me! I’m Being Honest & Calling It Out! Called Rebuking in Love; as we should do with each other.

Me:      I love you; you make me laugh so much.

Her:      We can’t Know what Love is Unless We Know Jesus First! I’m just saying you keep saying that it’s no big deal; but seriously it is a big deal LIVE FOR CHRIST NOT SATAN!

Me:      Ok, but seriously I will never forget being called the avenger of Satan. God love you. I think that actually made my entire year. I can’t stop giggling. Your right, we can’t date but I hope I never piss you off enough for you to ever stop rebuking me.

Her:      YOU MUST LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART ALL YOUR SOUL AND ALL YOUR STRENGTH. DEUTERONOMY 6:5 You Said You DON’T BELIEVE JESUS is The ONLY WAY!! Did you Not?!

Me:      And somehow that implies, I no longer love the lord my God with all my heart, soul & strength & that somehow I have put another god before my God?

Her:      Well Yes, I mean Why Else Would You Say Jesus Isn’t the Only Way??? We Can’t Go Thru Buddha to get to God, we Go Thru Jesus We Don’t Go Thru Yoda to Get to God. Therefore Who have you Placed before Christ Jesus Who Died For You?! If He isn’t First in your Life?!

Me:      I hate to have to recapitulate; but I said Jesus is the way for Christians, but I believe God makes other arrangements for other belief systems. It doesn’t negate the salvation offered through Jesus, nor am I saying that Buddha replaces that salvation; I just believe that for the millions of souls that were never offered a legitimate knowledge of Christ, God makes a way for them. That is of course, up to God, but it’s just something I believe now. I just refuse to have an exclusive religious mentality any longer. That’s just me & I don’t want, or expect you to agree with me. It’s my personal belief & that’s it, it’s not that I think anyone else replaces Jesus; however, if something they said makes sense, I accept it; just like you might accept something a pastor says even though he never wrote a single sentence in the bible.

Her:      As far as religion, that’s All Man Made & Yes I was Once a Catholic; but I came to Understand a True Relationship with Christ & What it Entails its Work. But I’m Not given any more than I can handle & I’m Not Trying to Change your views & if you believe what you believe then That’s Between You & Jesus.

Me:      Perfect, thank you for allowing me to have my own relationship with Jesus, that’s all I want. You don’t have to agree, just give me the space to love & worship Jesus in my own unique way. You can say what you will; but obviously there are many ways to worship Jesus. If there was only one way, there would be only one universal (catholic) Christian church; not 20,000 – 38,000 different Christian churches. Thank you so much for accepting & respecting my views.

Her:      The Point is: There is One God and One God Only! That’s what I’m saying.

Me:      And I completely agree with you; so why are we arguing?

Her:      You can’t say One Minute, I Don’t Believe Jesus is the Only Way & then turn Around & be all Like, well I do Believe Buuuuuut….. it doesn’t work that way.

Me:      Never mind!

Her:      See, Now Who’s Getting upset? I’m Just Trying to Prove a Point apparently You Don’t Get It. (Ah yeah, it’s me who doesn’t get it!)

Me:      I’m not upset. Holy shit woman, you accused me of being an attorney for Satan himself & I laughed my ass off! Most insecure, ego oriented, jack asses would’ve been outraged at you. Unfortunately, I was excited because I thought we had come to a mutual agreement to respect each others different views; but now it appears we are back at the beginning again & I must prepare for bed, so I am now a little discouraged.

Her:      I’m just stating my Views, Its That Simple You have yours I have mine one day we will find out if how we lived was Pleasing To God the Father And We are to Rebuke in Love & If Satan isn’t An Enemy What is he?! To Me he is an Enemy & Discouragement comes From The Enemy. Pray that the Lord Help You.

Me:      I’m willing to bet my soul, we are both children whom are pleasing to our same Father. Ok, I’m going to bed; but since you can’t let it rest, I’ll give you something else to get your panties into a bunch… There is absolutely no possible way I could be the attorney for the devil. It would be as if you were to defend a ‘foogle knocker’. Because you cannot defend something you believe to be fictitious. God love you my dear, I hope that doesn’t keep you up all night; but unfortunately I drive a gas truck & hundreds depend on me to get a good night sleep. Good night my friend.

Tired of Dogmatic Intolerance

Recently, a friend sent me a link (at the bottom) to ‘Biblical Meditation’; and I thought, awesome, finally someone was talking about meditation from a scriptural perspective – especially since it’s mentioned so frequently therein. However, I was very disappointed to discover the author bashing Eastern traditions. Why couldn’t he just say what he had to say without attacking someone else’s beliefs?

But OK, now he’s said it, let’s get on with it; however, no, the author couldn’t stop blaspheming Eastern traditions – in fact, he attributes Eastern meditation to the work of the devil on four occasions. You already proved meditation is scriptural, so why the extra attack on Eastern philosophy? Evidently, you must still expect to find some members of your faith bucking your novel concept, so you go the extra mile to reassure your readers it’s not the devil’s meditation from those evil Eastern philosophies. What scripture is it again where Jesus said, “Go ye into all the world and condemn every faith that differs from your own”?

If your simple-minded belief structure requires you to have an antagonist – which is no different from any Hollywood movie – in order for you to feel coerced into being good little boys and girls so Santa Claus brings you more presents, so be it; however, you needn’t project your primitive superstitions on a culture that was established over a millennium before your own.

Mr. J. Hampton Keathley, you obviously don’t know much about Eastern meditation. that’s OK, since you’ve probably never studied it; however, don’t you think it wise to do some research before you make such outlandish statements. I’m sure your answer would be, “It didn’t come from my faith, which is of the only true God; hence it must come from the devil!”

This is nothing less than the ignorant mentality of the Spanish Inquisition – which cost thousands of good people their lives – passed down as a legacy from your predecessors. I’m certain your response to this would be, “Oh; that’s the Catholic Church; I’m a narrow-minded bigot of another Christian faction!” Well, funny how much you all think alike my friend, but regardless of what you may think those are your religious ancestors.

I believe religious intolerance is just as potent today as it ever was, the only difference: The church is no longer more powerful than the government. In fact, I believe the Constitution and the principle of ‘separation of church and state’ is the core blockade preventing religious bigots from burning innocent victims at the stake again. I firmly believe there are still radical fanatics who would, if they could. It’s only been a decade since Christian Serbs established rape camps for Muslim women, and when they had Muslim men bite the testicles off of other Muslims in an attempt to commit religious genocide. Why, because I’m sure that’s what Jesus would’ve wanted, right?

When normal secure people are in possession of the best car – government – or what have you, they don’t feel the need to bad mouth someone else’s stuff just to make theirs appear superior – it simply just is. You don’t see Mathew McConaughey talking down other actors of lesser quality – there’s no need for it; it merely reveals one’s ignorance and insecurities. If you want to believe your unique branch of Christianity is the only real religion having God’s approval, then go right ahead; but please don’t do it at the expense of other’s beliefs and long standing traditions.

It’s been 2000 years since Jesus tried to teach us how to love and forgive one another, including our enemies, not withstanding, “He who is without sin may cast the first stone.” How long before we start practicing these primary principles? If you want to proselyte other faiths, that’s fine; however, please do so without belittling them. Have you ever wondered why Christianity is on the decline? It’s time to put an end to religious intolerance once and for all.

Having been born again and having studied Eastern meditation, I feel compelled to end this with some constructive information: If you practice your Biblical meditation, and only that, you will do yourself a world of good – I promise you. However, know this: Among many of the several versions of meditation found in the East, they also teach, focusing on one good moral quality – like focusing your mind on peace.  It will teach you how to master the 10,000 screaming voices in your head, which is a major culprit hindering us from hearing the voice of God. Try it sometime.

If their meditation is from the devil then where does yours come from? Especially when you consider; Christianity traces its roots to the East. Jesus wasn’t born in Mississippi, you know.

As far as other meditations, which focus on ‘clearing your mind entirely’ being a dangerous practice, opening your mind to the wiles of the devil: First of all, it’s merely an advanced stage of the meditation we’ve already been discussing – you should try it also. And, most importantly, if you – who were created in the image of God – are in possession of such a weak mind that simply clearing it will create an open invitation for the devil to move in, may I suggest you toss it out! Because that kind of concept is as ludicrous as saying, “I have to keep my garage full of junk in order to prevent my neighbors from parking in it.”

Thank you for doing a much-needed  piece on Biblical meditation; it is an exceptional piece which is very informative. However, please remove the derogatory remarks on Eastern philosophies, such as:

“In Scripture it does not mean to sit and ponder infinity or to empty the mind so some force can fill it by repeating some chant or mantra. Such is dangerous and opens the mind to demonic attack. Just as meditating in a vacuum or to empty the mind as it is done in eastern religions is dangerous and may open the mind to demonic attack”

Michael Blakeslee “Never accept limitations in an unlimited Universe”

http://bible.org/article/biblical-meditation

Drew Gerald I think his criticism was very well articulated, open-minded, mature, non-dualistic, valid, and well-deserved. I think more people should voice such opinions in a peaceful and humane way.