What following Jesus means to me

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Following Jesus is not the cakewalk many believe it to be.

Being love is vastly beyond what most imagine.

It is not about church, Bible reading, etc. In fact the Bible has misled many more than it ever saved.

Salvation is not about religion, faith or belief. It is LOVE.

Religions, faith, beliefs, rituals, etc. are not only divisive, but meaningless. Love is uniting.

I have always been a hawk. If they are evil, bomb the bastards. I have changed!

Jesus said, “love your enemies”. Carl Jung voiced the same truth in, “what you resist, persists”.

What if, instead of resistance, we simply said, “I love you”?

What if one raised in ghetto street violence viewed all others as privileged and was determined to get “his” by force, faced you with a gun, demanding your wallet? What if you not only handed it to him lovingly but said and really felt, “I love you” to your attacker? Let’s say he pulled the trigger, the bullet pieced your heart, you fall to the floor, and your last words are, “I….love……you”, and you’re gone. What has been the effect? You have transcended from the physical to the spiritual but what about your attacker? Has not his heart been melted? He has either been drawn toward spiritual awakening or drawn further into physical separation and deeper into hell. We could apply the same scenario to an attack by Isis.

In any case our situation has not changed, we transcended physicality either way as a result of the encounter either through love or some lacking of it, the only question is, has the other evolved or devolved?

This was precisely what Jesus did. He was the first to demonstrate what love is. Among his final words were, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do”. Jesus had realized love and at the same time realized that his attackers had a ways to go. He demonstrated for us the power of love and non-resistance and in so doing changed the world. Let’s suppose Jesus had banded an army of followers as is usually the case and had desperately fought to defend his teachings. He would then have simply been among the many who did the same in lack of love instead of the one who changed the world by simply being love.

But how many are so brave or committed or have such faith in love? Love is neither aggression or defense but pure acceptance. We will never defeat our enemies by conflict. There will always be more until we finally learn to be love.

We think we must defend our faith (belief) and of course, so do the others. But let’s suppose one side should wake up to truth, lay down their weapons and say, we love you, overrun and kill us if you wish. What would be the result? Of course, this is not likely on a national scale but will only happen on a one by one basis.

It is my belief that all needs and all acts are for lack of love and committed in a desperate search for it, although ignorant of that underlying motivation. I believe all sin is merely lack of love.

Does condemnation exists? Is it consistent with love? Is capital punishment OK? Is it love? Is abortion OK? Is it love? Does an eternal hell exist? Is it love? Cannot all questions be answered in like manner?

It is my belief that we are here to finally accept love as the key. All will eventually get it. Love would have it no other way. And yes, we are living many physical experiences in our trek to LOVE.

Our love for Jesus is based on the fact that he was the first in recorded history to actually suffer excruciating physical death in order to demonstrate what love is. But who of us are really Jesus followers?

Religious Fanatics

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Some thoughts on the recent Islamic murderers in San Bernardino, CA. We view those acts as pure evil which they surely are. However, considering this from a purely religious standpoint, some interesting observations arise. Were these two intentionally violating God’s will? Were they rejecting God in favor of their own will? Were they choosing hell instead of heaven? Certainly not, quite the opposite. They were totally convinced they were not only serving God but sacrificing their own lives in that service. How then would a loving God judge such? We who believe much differently would conclude that they were acting with great sincerity but ignorance. They had been indoctrinated in one of the beliefs of their culture with unquestioning faith. Who’s fault then is this great injustice? Are not the Muslims as sincere as any in choosing to serve God? Are they intentionally rejecting truth? Are they not as certain of their beliefs as we are ours? How are any to come to know truth without openly observing and serious questioning?

We can be quick to judge and say they should have questioned their undying faith but their devoted acceptance of their indoctrinated belief blocked any such reasoning. Does love condemn ignorance?

Religion

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In my mind, God is vastly beyond religions, beliefs, prayer, rituals, worship, accepting, doing, etc.

No one is converted to truth by argument, evangelism, point making, etc.

People may be persuaded to accept one belief or another but all such is merely vacillating physicality.

No one is dependent on another for salvation, nor are they dependent upon a belief.

In fact, beliefs, religions, etc. are divisive.  Truth is uniting into oneness and love.

There is no such thing as separation, boundaries, individuals, etc.

Truth is spirit and is only One.

Truth comes by going within and awakening to who and what we really are.

This is what Jesus was trying to teach and many including the Gnostics got the point.

The statement that got Jesus crucified was, “the father and I are one”.

After many years of deep contemplation, I now know that truth is Oneness

Those who have found truth, are not winning converts by rhetoric but by simply being what they are.

They possess a wholeness, expressed as light which attracts others by its profundity not to be found in rhetoric, religion or seeking.

In fact, there is no such thing as converts, there is only the awakened and the un-awakened

Everyone is eternally absorbed by God’s love while experiencing an illusion of separation and physicality.

Once we open to truth, it will open to us.
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What is Life?

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Is it a heart pumping blood, lungs breathing and a brain seemingly producing thoughts?

Or is it vastly beyond physicality, existing as awareness and knowing?

Are you your body and brain?

What happens to you when the body ceases to function?

Are you a physical being seeking a particular spiritual experience?

Or are you a spiritual being having a physical experience?

The answer is obvious but overlooked by the masses seeking a religious experience.

What does it mean to be whole?

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Love

To be whole is to be love. Love is oneness. A mother and father love their offspring like no other because they are one, the same sperm and egg. At birth, they begin a sojourn of separation but the oneness is forever as well as the love.

Just as a loving mother and father may be saddened at their son or daughter’s falling away, they forever love and look forward to that ones return to their loving arms. The thought of condemnation could never enter a Consciousness of love. So it is with our Creator, patiently waiting our awakening. We are the very embryo of God. His prodigal son groping his way back to his loving original sonship in the Garden of Eden.

Here in physicality, we experience an illusion of separation because we chose to experience independence, separate from our Creator. However, because our Creator is our loving father, we can never truly be separate.

We are not here to accept one belief or another but merely to awaken to love and what we really are. We are all at different way points along that pathway, some requiring more physical sojourns than others, but all will eventually find their way. In my opinion, awakening to that truth and becoming love, ends physical sojourns while failure to do so, calls forth yet another.

Belief, Faith or even Morality is not the issue

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Surprising though it may be, in the final analysis, belief, faith, doctrine or morality are not of consequence as far as ascension or salvation is concerned. They can all be swept out the door like dust from the floor. All that matters is our love capacity. Love displaces all.    Evil, bad morality, etc. only reflect a lack of love.  And that is the lesson we are here to learn.  We are not here to choose between endless beliefs, having faith and worshiping one, while considering the others wrong and even adversaries, while others, just as sincere, accept something else because they were born in a different time or culture.  And no, those “others” are not judged or condemned because of their differences.  This is not what unconditional love is and it is not what God is.  There is no judgment.  We chose to temporarily experience good and evil and are now finding our way back home, just as the prodigal son.  We are here to discover what we really are and all the rest will fall beautifully into place.

Our stumbling block is a belief in separation. Our capacity to love is greatly diminished by that belief.  Belief in separation is the root of all evil, judgment, comparisons, fear, strife, ego and all negativity. Only when we come to realize that we are one with all and all is within and not separate, can we truly know love. Only when we recognize that we are one with all can we love all of creation as ourselves, because it IS ourselves.

Straight is the way and narrow the gate that leads to truth and few there be that find it. And those who do, do not remain in physicality. Jesus realized who and what he really was and was trying to teach that we are all the same.  The Gnostics got the message and many others who were him but the majority were ingrained jews, so what resulted was a mix mash of OT and truth.  The statement that got Jesus killed was, “The father and I are one”. But the people were so ingrained in OT doctrine of an angry, jealous, judging and vengeful god they would not hear it.   There is no such god.  And along that vein, let me hurry on to say, it was obviously not Infinite love that commanded the Israelites to mercilessly slaughter the innocent Canaanites, including children and babies, nor the many other Biblical atrocities.   It was testosterone filled egos, believing in separation and devoid of love.  The religions have it all wrong, desecrating both God and love to fit their belief.  Let us not make the same mistake as those who murdered Jesus by letting ingrained belief blind us to truth.

I strongly suspect that coming to this realization brings an end to physical journeys, while failure to do so, calls forth another.

The real good news, God really IS love!

Ups and Downs

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Ups and downs

Happiness can only be achieved when one comes to the realization that life is an experience of ups and downs and the downs are as normal and to be expected as the ups.  Life is contrasts of infinite variations, long, short, good, evil, hot, cold, sick, well, birth, death, etc.  All are as common as breathing, digestion, heartbeat, growing hair, etc. and completely beyond our control. It is all simply the experience of physicality or life.

When we allow the downs to get us down and try to cling to the ups, we are failing to realize who and what we really are.  We are not physical beings.  We are not mortal beings, we are infinite spiritual beings having a limited physical experience and vastly beyond all physical or bodily sensations.

When one stops to think about it, it is rather simple.  Contentment consists of accepting “what is”.  We cannot change it in the slightest.  What is, IS.  We can kick and scream or whatever but it has absolutely no effect.  Contentment is accepting what is, knowing that some of the road we travel is smooth while just as much can be very rough, regardless our efforts to change it while realizing that this is the norm. When our happiness or pleasant attitude is dependent on things going well we are setting ourselves up for a downer.  When we can ride the waves of good and not so good, evenly, we are much closer to where we’re headed.

While it’s true that some seem to experience a smoother road than others, regardless religions, beliefs, etc., who knows what other factors, prior lives etc., may be involved.  It is simply what life is and what we are here to experience.

My turn to preach

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hellfire-brimstone-preacher-16612161

The belief is that all are judged by the freewill choices they make and it’s just that simple. But think about it. A much more powerful determinant to one’s character and choices than free will is conditioning or perhaps genetics. And conditioning or genetics have nothing to do with free will or choices. Our maturity is, by and large, a reflection of our childhood conditioning, over which we have no control. Most perverted offenders suffered some kind of mistreatment or abuse in their upbringing, which they did not freely choose. Most vile offenders come from ghettoes, broken homes or other depraved upbringings. Likewise religious views are largely determined by conditioning. If one is born in Israel, he/she will most likely be Jewish, the same with Muslims born in Islamic countries, Christians in the West, etc.

So, if our choices and beliefs are largely a result of our conditioning or genetics instead of freewill and we are not responsible for, or in control of such, what does that say about love, fairness and judgment? If judgment exists, there are endless and vastly different beliefs as to what is the standard.

The belief is that we are judged by our choices, but there are endless different views on just what constitutes that judgment with the differences largely based on each one’s acquired belief. Everyone is largely a product of their conditioning and, of course, most are quite sure and confident of their respective beliefs. If judgment exists, there are vastly different beliefs as to just what it is. As far as I’m concerned, if there are two people very sincere in wishing to serve God but cannot agree on what constitutes salvation, that in itself proves that if God is love, there is no judgment. Love would not leave something so crucial to ambiguity. Few are open enough to seriously question.

Who am I?

Suddenly I awaken from another night of sleep, I roll my head toward a pair of windows with blinds closed and notice light behind and surrounding them like it is trying to force it’s way through whatever may be interfering with its presence. I’m aware of the rumble and horn of a passing freight train not too many blocks away as it drowns out the more pleasant sounds of nature. The windows are open behind the blinds as a breeze gently moves them a bit and I catch a fragrance of the outside. The thought arises, it must be morning, maybe 5ish. I turn a bit more to see the hands on the small bedside clock as my mind and the hands on the clock confirm 5:23 AM. Other thoughts arise, how much longer shall I lie here, this position needs changing as I turn to the other side, more thoughts, what am I doing this morning, shall I have cereal or eggs, then where are these thoughts coming from, I’m obviously not choosing them. I have no idea what will be the next, they just flow but from where? The next thing I know I am again awakening, the light now is more profuse as the thought, now what time is it, arises and I again turn to the clock whose hands have relocated to the 7:42 position. Thoughts again immediately begin flowing, it’s time to get up, must take my shower, it’s Tuesday, gotta pay the utilities today, must not forget, etc. Again, the realization, I’m not creating or choosing these thoughts anymore than I’m beating my heart, breathing my lungs, digesting my food or fighting off the viruses attacking my body. It’s all just happening. Then the thought, is there actually an individual choosing to have cereal or eggs or does one or the other just happen and a mind thinks it is the doer?

I AM THAT

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I AM THAT
Dialogues of Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

That in whom reside all beings and who resides in all beings, who is the giver of grace to all, the Supreme Soul of the universe, the limitless being — I am that.
Amritbindu Upanishad

That which permeates all, which nothing transcends and which, like the universal space around us, fills everything completely from within and without, that Supreme non-dual Brahman — that thou art.
Sankaracharya

The seeker is he who is in search of himself.
Give up all questions except one: ‘Who am I?’ After all, the only fact you are sure of is that you are. The ‘I am’ is certain. The ‘I am this’ is not. Struggle to find out what you are in reality.
To know what you are, you must first investigate and know what you are not. Discover all that you are not — body, feelings thoughts, time, space, this or that — nothing, concrete or abstract, which you perceive can be you. The very act of perceiving shows that you are not what you perceive.
The clearer you understand on the level of mind you can be described in negative terms only, the quicker will you come to the end of your search and realize that you are the limitless being.

Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj

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