Category Archives: God

Is There A Sense Of Transcendence Active In Your Life?

2016-10-01_ripple-1181181-1279x794Most humans will simply live out their lives playing on the field between the birth and death, end zones. Yet every one of us has within them a sense that there is more to life than this material plane of existence. Many will discover and experience one or several religious systems that claim to provide understanding and solutions that will aid them in their transcending to the next levels of existence.

Today most humans living in the western culture live in societies were obtaining their basic needs (food, water, shelter and clothing) require only a fraction of the 24 hour day cycle to obtain those needs. So why is there not more time devoted to answering our transcendent call? Could it be that our human education has convinced us that our pursuits would be more beneficial if spent elsewhere?

Even though the sense of transcendence is individualistic, we are culturally entangled with one another, and as a member of the human species, there is also a sense of limits and protocol when we attempt to inform others about our discoveries pertaining to the subject of transcendence. This attachment to our cultural groups makes escaping earth’s material hold on us very difficult to overcome. So how does an individual achieve escape velocity?

First, it takes a belief that escape and transcendence are real tangible possibilities.  Then it takes faith, first to seek out strategies, then faith to pursue the goal of transcending. Even after we grow weary on our journey, it requires courage to re-evaluate and re-tool if necessary. This journey toward transcendence moves us form the material to the spiritual plane of existence and experience. It is a lifelong endeavor that affects everyone member in the human species. We are all a part of the same whole.

For many our sense of transcendence has been reduced to the joy we get by having children and living vicariously through the next generation. Then they mature and begin to pursue their life’s journey. Quickly do we come to the understanding that only our personal journey can fulfill our heart’s desire to answer transcendence’s call?  For many this occurs during their midlife awakening, and realization.  During this period, many begin to take seriously their spiritual development and not rely on human tradition to solve their transcendent call.

Throughout our lives, the sense of transcendence continues to reverberate internal to our being. Some answer the call by doubling down on the traditions given to them at birth and others set off and explore the foreign and exotic traditions of other cultures. Regardless of how you choose to answer the call, what are the questions that arise and keep active the call?

Acknowledging that there is a process or a state called transcendence brings little comfort if our lives are not actively pursuing that state. What is the process for achieving escape velocity? Is it available to every human? Is it called by different names in different cultures? So let us say, for discussion purposes we have become born again, awakened or enlighten; am I transcending this game called life? Will the religious tradition, spiritual journey, or cultural path that I have chosen position me in achieving escape velocity?

It is very hard to measure our progress towards transcendence. Even if we compare our journey to the previous generations, we still have no way of determining the success of those generations in the afterlife.  Regardless of the path we are on, we can measure how active that sense of transcendence is in our life. Are we passionately pursuing the unknown? Do we trust in the traditions, myths and legends?

The God of the Christian bible once described Himself as “I am, that I am”. What is the nature of what we call I am? Is it awareness? Are we spiritual beings? What is that relationship to God and others?  This brings us to the question what are we transcending from? Is it our being, our relationship with God or our relationship with other humans? The questions are many and the answers are sometimes few.

Yet, for some of us we are very aware that this current life is not all there is. Many around us allow themselves to become distracted in the everyday drama of life. Many do it to deafen the sense of that internal call to transcend, thinking that if they ignore it, it will go away. Many bury themselves in religious and cultural traditions hoping that it will absolve them from a judgement that will determine if they qualify to transcend.

On my journey as a non-affiliated Disciple of Jesus, I am convinced that my awareness of love and peace within my fellow humans is paramount to experiencing a transcended existence. Quantum science also hints that the observer changes the potential of possibility, into reality. Therefore, if I want a sense of transcendence active in my life and in future human generations, then I must remain consciously aware of the transcending human potential.

Matthew 22:1-14 The Parable of the Wedding Feast

And Jesus answered and spoke to them again by parables and said:“The kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who arranged a marriage for his son, and sent out his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding; and they were not willing to come. Again, he sent out other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who are invited, “See, I have prepared my dinner; my oxen and fatted cattle are killed, and all things are ready. Come to the wedding.”’ But they made light of it and went their ways, one to his own farm, another to his business. And the rest seized his servants, treated them spitefully, and killed them. But when the king heard about it, he was furious. And he sent out his armies, destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. Therefore go into the highways, and as many as you find, invite to the wedding.’ 10 So those servants went out into the highways and gathered  together all whom they found, both bad and good. And the wedding hall was filled with guests. 11 “But when the king came in to see the guests, he saw a man there who did not have on a wedding garment. 12 So he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you come in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless. 13 Then the king said to the servants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and[a] cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ 14 “For many are called, but few are chosen.”

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National Forgiveness

 

2016-08-06_splash-3-1190007This may seem to be a crazy concept; however, God dropped it into my spirit a few weeks ago. It is staying in the forefront of my mind quite possibly because we are in this political season. As I pondered the concept, I imagined it to be a fully developed doctrine plucked out of the rubble of our current civilization by some futuristic civilization. What my mind can’t imagine is this concept ever being acted on by the human subcultures that exist in the world today.

The act of forgiveness would necessitate a clear violation of sovereignty. Rarely do we think of ourselves as sovereign or relate to other individuals as sovereign beings. The term is relegated to members of royal families and the stuff they own as part of their kingdom. Yet that is exactly what we all are, members of God’s royal family.

Notwithstanding, we live in a reality, that is defined by our awareness of secularized social authority. These various forms include authority of family, of persons over 18 year of age, religious organizations, state and local governments, and their delegated officers. When these various entities exercise their form of authority quite often they come into conflict, and we appeal to a higher authority such as the Federal Government and God.  Therefore, it is that within the reality of our social structure, violations happen and forgiveness is needed. Many judicial proceedings are held every day to keep in-check the lines of authority and to recognize the boundaries of individual rights or what could be described as personal sovereignty.

A violation of national sovereignty could rise to the level of an act of war or a simple snub in diplomatic relations between two nations. Depending on the severity of the violation, what is required is for the collective ego of the violated nation to absorbed the incursion to its sovereignty and be willing to forgive.

What this is not, is an overlooking of an accident between allies, or an act of insurgency by one of it colonized states. What I am talking about is an unprovoked unilateral attacked on the national sovereignty by a nation with lesser or equal strategic power. What makes the situations more difficult is when the offense is witnessed by other sovereign nations. This is where a national ego arises and asserts it standing among its fellow members of nation states.

The reason I cannot imagine the concept of National Forgiveness being executed at this moment in human history is because the individual collective egos (you and me) within a nation-state are very fragile. We live in a world where the love of God for us is constantly in question by every human child. In other words, every child still requires a constant demonstration by God that they are loved. In the face of a foreign sovereign nation’s violation, the collective of individuals turn to God for justification and an overt act to save face and comfort their fragile ego. God on the other hand is looking for mature individuals, people who recognize His presence within, having the strength of spirit to absorb offense and a heart willing to forgive.

The roots of the Judaeo-Christian religion has created a system of beliefs, popular today in humanity, that God chooses to love one child more than others for the benefit of all His human children. Therefore, everyone wants blessing so they can be the path through which humanity is saved.  Everyone desires to be so enriched that others around them can’t help but notice the hand of God in their lives.  If that is not reality, wars are fought to change the status quo. It is within this traditional framework that makes forgiveness between individuals very difficult and the concept of National Forgiveness a pie in the sky fairy-tale. Can this be changed? Does hope exist?

When we examine the roots of traditional scriptural interpretation and the resulting human beliefs today, we can see some areas available for re-evaluation. Again, in the Judaeo-Christian religion three early historical stories (Cain/Able, Jacob/Esau, Ishmael/Isaac) are caught up in this dynamic of who will get God’s blessing. Even the most popular parable of Jesus, the story of the lost or prodigal son has its traditional interpretation trapped in this paradigm of blessing one and not the other.

Luke 11:13 (NKJV)  If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!”

The belief that a parent chooses to love one child over another child may be an experiential reality, from the point of view of human interaction, however it is a misinterpretation of scripture and of God’s nature to think that God would bless one child over another. This definition of dysfunctional love, even though traditional, is a gross injustice and has been used to justify one group of humans mistreating another group.

Humanity is evolving by dropping outdated traditions and beliefs that tend to keep the status quo and serve only portions of humanity. Jesus died for all and scriptural interpretation is growing in the light of what “all” means today. Concepts like National Forgiveness are on the horizon for the nation states within humanity. More and more human children are learning to recognize God’s presence within “all” and His love for “all”. Therefore, as His children mature, humanity’s evolution continues to advance.

The infinite-ness of God is clearly seen in scripture. However, the human inability to contemplate the infinite-ness of God or the infinite-ness within our personal being has causes us to hoard wealth and display it like a badge of honor creating a false reality of God’s blessings. Individual human identity has shifted its roots from the relationship with God, to its relationship with wealth, traditionally interpreted as God’s blessing. Our ability to discern God’s presence is therefore limited to the wealth we perceive.

God loves us all and God is within us all, individually and collectively.  The awareness of that truth makes individual forgiveness and national forgiveness possible.

Luke 15:28-32 (NKJV) “But he was angry and would not go in. Therefore his father came out and pleaded with him. 29 So he answered and said to his father, ‘Lo, these many years I have been serving you; I never transgressed your commandment at any time; and yet you never gave me a young goat, that I might make merry with my friends. 30 But as soon as this son of yours came, who has devoured your livelihood with harlots, you killed the fatted calf for him.’ 31 “And he said to him, ‘Son, you are always with me, and all that I have is yours. 32 It was right that we should make merry and be glad, for your brother was dead and is alive again, and was lost and is found.’”

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Nature of Human Love

2016-05_rippling-waters-1370993To understand human love we must understand humans. The religious among us would argue that unless you know God you do not understand love, because love comes from God. The religious also believe Atheist are incapable of loving and acting morally but only understand the basic human need to preserve the human species. Again, many of religious people hold beliefs that God is the source of true morality and humans in their fallen condition are in capable of love and only act to escape feelings of loneliness.

To date our many human sub cultures have proven that love is easily extended people within their cultures and is withheld from people foreign to their culture.  These cultures have demonstrated that fear of outsiders is common among all cultures. Cultures with homogeneous communities display natural tendencies toward internal cooperation. Only during times when cultures share a mutual threat does cross cultural cooperation take place.

For this discussion, let us define love as the removal of separation between humans. We must also recognize that cultural identity is one of the main forces that justify the need for separation. With our world population nearing 7.5 billion people, human subcultural definitions are constantly shifting. Communications technology and transportation are just two major factors that redefine culture in today’s human experience. Probably the biggest threat to any culture is the loose of its identity.

The main reason love is more easily given to those internal to the culture has more to do with the preservation of that culture. In order to maintain a strong cultural identity there must be a balance between internal and external influences. That is why political-correctness and immigration are such flash point issues in modern culture. All healthy cultures will have forces that want to maintain the status quo and resists internal redefinition’s and the external influences from other cultures.

It has always been the tactic within human subcultures to use fear of death or the loss of identity to motivate the members within to resist change. And if you hold to the notion that true love comes from without you can see the apparent conflict between the forces of love and fear. However, there is always forces of those from within that choose to love the “others” on the outside. Sometimes they are known as sympathizers and sometimes they are called traitors.

Revelation 5:9-10 (NLT)  And they all sang a new song to the Lamb: “You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were killed, and with the blood of your death you bought people for God from every tribe, language, people, and nation. 10 You made them to be a kingdom of priests for our God, and they will rule on the earth.”

Originally, human culture extended from family relationship and birth was the entry point for most cultures.  On that rare occasion when people married outside of their culture was there a provision made to change cultures. Ultimately, when human evolution has completed its path, there will be one culture with equity and love for each individual.

After Adam and Eve, human history records the results of separated subcultural identity. Today each human individual see themselves as separate, almost a cultural island of their own making. If humanity has an evolution goal for unity between all, it is a concept far removed from the mindset most. Today however we do see the emergence of concepts such as the global citizen, but is this a true form of love?

There are two questions arising before us. The first asks, is human experience on the path to arriving at a single culture with equality for all as it relates to love? The second question ask will this love be a natural expression from within the individuals of humanity or will it be an external moral code that goes against our human nature but one that is adopted because it is the most efficient way to live and survive? Is love a product of nature or nurture?

If enough members of the human culture begin to live in the identity that they we are children of God and that they have inherited God’s loved as individuals and understand God loved all His children equally, then there will be hope for the human culture. If each human could know God’s love and entertain internally His presence of peace, then the external voices that declare fear, doubt, and lack would find limited space in the hearts of the daughters and sons of God.

Inherited by each human at a level beyond our basic understanding of DNA is the capability to exist as loving entities. Today, all the human subcultures nurture fear of other cultures and view them as a threat to their existence. As cultures grow large, they bring an appearance of stability but the cost is always at the expense of the “others”. As the “others” grow, they are forced to retaliate for their survival. If one culture is intolerant and unwilling to embrace external cultures and if the “other” culture is unwilling to compromise and merge itself into the other culture then survival dictates that only one culture can survive or the two cultures remain as enemies in a state of perpetual war.

Genesis 2:24 (NKJV) Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.

As an example of what is possible, take two family photos at or before a wedding of the immediate and extended family the two individuals getting married. Then look at a photo of that family four generations later you would see because of love the two have removed separation and become one.

At the core of our being is the true nature of who we are. God’s sending of Jesus in flesh to earth awakens the reality of a truth that God’s DNA is infused into every human. Jesus is a human who many recognize that He is both a son of man and a son of God. He is considered the first-fruit because what is true for the nature of Jesus is also true for us. Jesus is an example of what is possible when we ignore fearful tendencies and focus on the love (God) that dwells within us. Below is a list of what Jesus says is at the core of our being.

Attitudes of being human (Matthew 5:3-10)

  • Blessed are the poor in spirit
  • Blessed are the meek
  • Blessed are they who mourn
  • Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after justice
  • Blessed are the merciful
  • Blessed are the clean of heart
  • Blessed are the peacemakers
  • Blessed are they that suffer persecution for justice’ sake

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