Tag Archives: God

Humans Evolving Spiritually

2016-11-14_droplets-1384830-1598x1125Human evolution includes the development of that part of us that exist at our core. What makes this evolutionary period unique is our ability to observe on a global scale this process in real-time.   For thousands of years our developmental feedback has also evolved. Where once we were only shaped by our local tribal community, and then molded by patriotic influences of the nation-state. Today there is a global cross-pollination effecting human spiritual development.

More than anything else, religious traditions continue to provide the greatest framework for human spiritual development. They set the parameters for describing the spiritual nature of humanity. The institutions that keep and dispense the parameters are also subject to today’s global evolutionary influences. The questions proposed in this post concerns itself with the limits of human understanding as it relates to the reality of the nature of human spirituality.

Genesis 1:26-27 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.

Exodus 3:13-14 Then Moses said to God, “Indeed, when I come to the children of Israel and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they say to me, ‘What is His name?’ what shall I say to them?” 14 And God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” And He said, “Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”

John 17:22-23   And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: 23 I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.

Most, but not all religions define human spiritual nature in relationship to their understanding of God. If that God is infinite then spiritual nature tends to be infinite. Some religions derived their spiritual understanding and practice from a God that is perceived to be finite.

Religious tradition has much to say from both fronts. However, because of its slowness to adapt to the new outside global influences it is losing its ability to shape the moral consciousness of the current and therefore the next generation. Religion had been the go-to institution of society for ethical values. However, Its slowness to adapt has caused secular schools to pick up the slack in human spiritual evolution.

To counter this, there is an emergence of a global consciousness bought on by technology-based, virtual social constructs. Traditional religions are passing on an opportunity by using its resources to defend long-held traditions that they will eventually abandon as human understanding evolves. Technology based schools and technology driven social constructs are by default filling the vacuum by providing new paths to understanding human spirituality and ethical values. Internal to the major religions and yet outside of its hierarchical authority a grass-roots emergence of sorts has been taking place over the last 20 years if not longer.  This emergence has led to a growth of external movements that attempt re-transmit or re-communicate only the revelations of peace and love from the world’s main religion traditions. Members of these technology-based constructs consider themselves no longer affiliated with the traditional institutional culture of these main religious traditions.

Spirituality without judgement is not a new concept, but it flourishes in an environment where there is no requirement for group identity and membership.

Spirituality without judgement is not a new concept, but it flourishes in an environment where there is no requirement for group identity or membership. When group identity is no longer required spiritual understanding expand and evolve. If we live in a world where we change software on our phones every two years, why is it we are afraid to upgrade our beliefs and understanding concerning human spiritual nature? If God and His realm is truly infinite then there is more that we do not understand, than we do understand. Today’s traditional  models effectively binds understanding to that model.  Traditional cultures could provide a greater service to humanity if the ratio between defending beliefs and exploring human spiritual nature were reversed.

Once and individual or a group awakens to the evolutionary waves that are moving through the human species, the resistance to the waves of change decrease. As it relates to spiritual evolution, resistance is futile. However, the developmental journey needs the wisdom of the ages as we chart our unknown course into the future.

It is my hope that both traditional and these new religious social constructs will not abdicate their responsibility to human society and remain engage in the moral and ethical development of humanity’s spiritual evolution. I have no fear because like water, moral and ethical advances will find its way around any blockage and therefore peace and love will prevail. I encourage the non-affiliated technology based adherents that have escaped the limits of major and minor religious faiths of the world, to remain independent.

Our independence is evolutionary for human spiritual development on two fronts. Firstly, traditional institutions of religion are taking notice of opportunities missed when we opted out from them in pursuit of deeper spiritual understanding. Secondly, as spiritual freedom increases so does our ability as a human species to freely and lovingly respond to infinite God. This creativity will only be discovered and experienced as we shake off hierarchical relationships as the only path to seek the face of God. In an environment of pure freedom, prayer and meditation the only judgement that remains are the motivations of our heart. Are they arrogant and presuming, leaning on tradition or are they still and silent, in freedom and humility, soaking in the Presence of God. Human Spirit, locate at the heart of our being, is a manifestation of the infinite and diverse Presence of God.

Spiritual development that is free from hierarchy, doctrines, and practices is evolutionary and its awareness connects to an infinite God in ways inexperienced by the human generations before us. We must remain thankful and respectful to our ancestors who helped us to this point. However, future generations are counting on us to explore and push the spiritual envelope and evolve spiritually.  Infinite God is pure freedom.

John 4:21-24 Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father.22 You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. 24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

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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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Living Unconditional Love, Is Easier Than We Think

 

2016-04-30_water-1502135-640x480When we think about the term unconditional love, we think about God. From our human point of view, unconditional love seems impossible as a way of life. However, we as humans are also children of God and emulating our Heavenly Father is possible if we choose it as so. As sons and daughters of Adam and Eve, we can only make excuses for not living up to our potential as children of God.

God continually demonstrates unconditional love with His human children. If there is such a thing as a “God hack” for loving unconditionally here it is. Do not focus on the other person, but focus on the legal instrument of our relationship. At the core of every relationship between two persons is the will of each. Will, indicates choice and the declaration of ones will is a legally binding instrument.

The human point of view is dualistic, with our will acting as the subject and in this case, the will of the other person, acts as the object. In this scenario, what we humans usually say is that I will love you as long as you love me. We make our will to love others conditional on their will to love us. When we give love, we demand an acknowledgement and an accurate accounting of what was given. If we do not receive, the honor and thanks we believe we deserve for that gift, then we become measured and even withdrawn in our giving of love. In fact, most relationships are built on looking for evidence from the object of our love to determine if we will remain subject to our declared love.

God on the other hand (here is the God hack again) declared His love with five covenants for humanity and has never broken any of them or withdrawn any of His infinite being from us. In fact, every subsequent covenant lavishes a greater understanding to us of His desire to be one with us. God ultimately wants a state of non-duality, or unity in perfect freedom with every human.

The human point of view cannot comprehend love this intimate, so collectively and individually we test the limits of God’s love offering by exploiting, abusing, enslaving, torturing, and killing other objects of His love. We slap His cheek and in the same breathe we ask him do you still love us? What parent would not have a broken heart, if one of their children asked for the power and permission to kill their brother or sister? Yet he continues to love us.

God declared five covenants with humanity. Forget all the earthly definitions of what a covenant is. Even the best human reproduction pales in comparison to how God uses these five declarations to convince us of His unconditional love for all His children. Trust me, every earthly covenant you could study will be conditional and thus moot for this conversation. God’s five covenants as historically recorded in scripture, were made with, witness by, and named after five humans; 1) Adam, 2) Noah, 3) Abraham, 4) David, and 5) Jesus.

At the core of these covenant relationships is the will of God and the will of humanity. God declares His love focuses His action toward the legal instrument. (Are you recognizing the God hack?) In every case, we humans have walked away from our side of the covenant to pursue our personal will.

John 3:16 (NKJV) For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, ….

Romans 8:31-32 (NKJV)  What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?

We as children of God can likewise begin to love unconditionally when we recognize and focus on the legal instruments of our relationships and not on the subjective will of others. Here are a few examples of relationships:  family, boyfriend/girlfriend, marriage, citizens of communities, company employee, parent/child, citizen of a nations, citizen of humanity, and citizen of earth. For each relationship listed, has a legal instrument such as, a passport, a driver license, or a marriage license. For every legal document you possess there is a person, or ten thousand people, or millions of people on the other side of the relationship. This is the same with God’s 5 covenants.

It is easy for children of God to declare love.  This is evidenced by the many legal instruments of relationships in our material world. In the same way, loving unconditionally can be just as easy if we focus our giving toward the instruments of our relationships and not the willingness of others to respond in kind. Remember, It is only when others fail to uphold their side do we evidence unconditional love. Love is kind and does not envy. Unconditional love for a child of God simply declares itself and lives out that love through eternity.

This is what heaven on earth looks like and it is fundamental to the operation of God’s Kingdom. For any person who aspires to hold the office of ambassador with the Kingdom of God, unconditional love is the reconciling structure of the covenants our Father has established with all of humanity. Imagine a world where 10 billion people choose to demonstrate unconditional love towards each other. In this type of world people do not think more highly of themselves but remain aware of the equality of every person to freely exercise their will.

As we focus on the many instruments in our relationships and give willingly expecting nothing in return, we will begin to see what God see’s in His human children. Giving is contagious, even if our giving is rebuffed we turn the other cheek and freely give again. Especially for those who reject or mishandle our gifts we simply pray “Father, forgive them because they do not yet understand what they are doing”.   The Kingdom of God is here now, and we walk in it, as we love unconditionally. We humans are children of God and unconditionally loving our brothers and sisters is easier than we thought possible.

Matthew 26:26-29 (NKJV)  And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, “Take, eat; this is My body.” 27 Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. 28 For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. 29 But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom.”

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Love Is Simply Seeing Others as Self

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We live in a highly competitive world and yet it teaches us that we need the subjective thoughts of others to survive. This means that our subjective thoughts have a powerful effect on the survival of our fellow humans. If we were to map these thoughts to basic neurological functions, they could be grouped as thoughts of love or thoughts of fear. Thoughts of love search for solutions for the survival of the many and thoughts of fear look for the survival of the few.

Many humans believe that there is an ultimate and universal source for all life on planet earth. From this source stems true objective thought. For this discussion, I will call that source or point of view, God. True objective thought contains no fear, because from its point of view there is no separation of objects from itself. There is only one category of thought and that is of love and the nourishment of all life forms it created. Below is a scriptural account of creation, which is normally interpreted from a human point of view, and presents the world as a multiplicity of separated objects.

Genesis 1:27-31 (NLT) So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. 28Then God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it. Reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, and all the animals that scurry along the ground.” 29 Then God said, “Look! I have given you every seed-bearing plant throughout the earth and all the fruit trees for your food. 30 And I have given every green plant as food for all the wild animals, the birds in the sky, and the small animals that scurry along the ground—everything that has life.” And that is what happened. 31 Then God looked over all he had made, and he saw that it was very good!

Ultimately, thoughts of love motivate us to maximize the survival of all life forms including the human population and thus we attempt to developed equitable systems to deliver resources to the various human sub-cultures. However, when it appears, that resources are limited, fearful thoughts arise and we humans begin to manipulate and tinker with those delivery systems or go to war for the necessary resources to ensure the survival of a few. In other words, love sees resources as unlimited and seeks the survival of all, while fear, ultimately seeks the survival for the separate self.

The love that extends from God’s point of view is unlimited in thoughts of good for all and is also unlimited in resources that are needed for life to exist perpetually. In so-called “good times” humans are willing to contemplate a point of view that is good for all. However, human perception of world is in constant flux and it requires us to tune our point of view towards the source of life. Fear however, views resources as limited and creates a dissonant point of view with the source of life, which gives rise to philosophies that exalt concepts like “survival of the fittest”.

God designed and set in motion a universe that is always expanding. God also provides the resources that are needed to support an expanding universe. All life forms will experience multiple birth and death events as a function of an ever-expanding creation. Human perception of the world will produce thoughts and actions of love and fear that vary with the ebb and flow of the universe as it expands and contracts as part of its growth process.

Matthew 5:43-45 (NLT) “You have heard the law that says, ‘Love your neighbor’ and hate your enemy. 44 But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you! 45 In that way, you will be acting as true children of your Father in heaven. For he gives his sunlight to both the evil and the good, and he sends rain on the just and the unjust alike.

Matthew 24:6 (NKJV) And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.

So the question becomes, how do we shift or tune our point of view, to be in harmony with the source of all life?  We all identify with our perspective cultures and their competitive distributive systems. Some are socialist, some are market driven, and even human religious systems can be hierarchical when it comes to dispensing spiritual blessing. These systems unintentionally create beliefs that the supply of resources is becoming scarce.

Love knows no limits and fear only perceives lack, as it relates to resources. The human population is approaching 7.5 billion and already lacks the imagination for a population that is twice as large.  Even more, we humans prepare for war more than we reorganize for harmonious living. The threat of war has become a normal state of mind in these days and yet thoughts and action of love are supposed to be the characteristics of God’s children.

There are those of us that recognize that if we give into thoughts of fear, human life will de-evolve into dystopian sub-cultures. Today many segments of our popular culture echo or create visions of humanity living and coping with dysfunction. However, children of God should hold the belief that heaven is now on earth. Again, the questions haunts us, how do we love more than we fear and how do we align our point of view with the ultimate source of life?

My encouragement, is for each of us to contemplate and discover our unified relationship with the universal source of life. Somehow, many of us have become convinced that we are all separate and the only tactic available to survive is of “dog-eat-dog”. If we would define love as the dissolution of separateness between people, then maybe we could begin to envision a human community made from every tribe, tongue, and nation.

All life is an offspring of the original source and we all inherit the traits from that source. As children of the source, our Creator continues to look on us and say, “It is good”. My hope is that each of us, realize that the objective point of view, is simply love. The source of all life calls us, it’s very own and provides us unconditional love and unlimited resources. In many ways, the point of view of true love, is to, simply see others as self.

John 13:34-35 (NLT) So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. 35 Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”

Mark 12:31 (NLT) The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.”

Ephesians 5:29 (NKJV) For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church.

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The Heart of our Reality

2015-09-15_water-ripples-bubbles-1-1393338The reality we experience is very programmable. And the substance with which our reality is created comes from the core of our being. Depending on our cultural background we may use terms like, our heart or our spirit or our consciousness to describe this center or core area of our being. But what is the substance or stuff that makes up our reality? And just how flexible and programmable is our reality?

Proverbs 4:23 (NKJV) Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life.

2 Corinthians 4:18 (NKJV) While we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.

Hebrews 11:3 (NKJV) By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.

We live in a perpetual state of now, as eternal beings.  Yet because we understand ourselves to be separate beings, our minds have created dimensions of space and time to make sense of reality. These dimensions give meaning to our relationships with “other” things we believe to be separated from us. But, is this understanding of reality fundamental, or is this just a mirage that allows us to operate cooperatively?

If our reality is programmable, how do we access and lay hold of the fundamental substance of our reality? Typically religion has tried to fix the problems in reality and bring peace to our world by trying to control human behavior so that individual and collective faith can create a state of Nirvana or heaven on earth. But there seems to be these continual exceptions that appear to be outside of human control. Even when faith is placed in a big God there seems to be calamity like sickness, death, weather related incidents or big social events like war, economic discord and viral infections that randomly occur and opposed to our faith.

Science tries to increase human understanding by breaking down the individual objects and reducing them to their fundamental components. However even with the best tools developed by the human species such as the particle accelerator in CERN Switzerland, or the Hubble space telescope we continue to find the edge of our understanding. Then we have to create more theories to explain phenomena such a dark matter, and re-organize our understanding into systems such as quantum, string or unified field theories.

So let me suggest a different strategy one that does not preclude any humans from participating and one that should be compatible with existing explorations in our cultures of religion or science. I must give credit to author Melody Fletcher and her book Deliberate Receiving for suggesting some really practical ways to explore the programmable-ness of our reality. I do believe our answer lies somewhere in the combination of our beliefs about spiritual truth and our beliefs about objective truth.

Here are two simple but profound beliefs to add to our understanding and our exploration for ultimate truth?

  • Firstly that our being is not limited to this human body, its thoughts, feelings and perceptions; because the nature of our true being is infinite in scope, eternally present and consciously aware.
  • Secondly that we understand ourselves fundamentally to be unified with God and all of creation (human, animal, plant and mineral). Which could mean that our material world is not made of ideas or matter that are external; but is made of the consciousness at the core of our being?

Genesis 1:27 (NLT) So God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

John 17:22-23 (NLT) I have given them the glory you gave me, so they may be one as we are one. I am in them and you are in me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me. (Jesus praying to God about every human)

With these two simple beliefs we can begin to contemplate, pray or meditate a bout our relationship in reality. What we will begin to see is that the tens of thousands of our existing beliefs are immediately in opposition to the emerging worldview being spawned by these two simple beliefs. As we contemplate these two simple beliefs let’s not do so in a vacuum but search your current cultural traditions for existing hints of the emerging reality that is coming into focus.

Many may agree that fundamentally humanity is not evolving the way we imagined it would go. As technology increases our ethics, kindness and love for everyone including the whole of creation must also grow. The traditional concepts of space and time will not disappear but we will soon learn to operate outside of the limiting beliefs  that formed these concepts. As a disciple of Jesus I see that this deeper understanding of reality will increase our faith and enable us to feed more, heal more and love more.

Human evolution does not have to go the way of the dystopian world view. The spiritual visions of reduced suffering and greater compassion resulting in heaven on earth is a possible reality. What is needed is courage to self-reprogram from our traditional belief structures. Those that accomplish this will begin to experience the programmable-ness of our reality. We will notice that the substance of our so-called material  is not hardwired because the substance of this world’s reality is the same substance at the heart of our being.

Hebrews 11:1 (NLT) Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen: it gives us assurance about things we cannot see.

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Celebrity-ism Leads to Cultures of Religious and Secular Hierarchy

2015-08-09_small_rippleAs members of society, we are part of both spiritual and secular cultures and hopefully our desire is for every person to reach their maximum human potential. If that statement is true then you are doing your part to help human evolution. However, I sense  a negative reverberation flowing contrary to the progressive evolutionary process taking place in human society today. I could be wrong, but  I am perceiving in my global connections that there is an ever-increasing part of our human population that are feeling marginalized, losing hope, having low expectation of evolving forward and worse they have an even lower expectation for their children and the generations that will follow. I believe this reverberation is a direct reflection of the value systems with in our various cultures.

We have reached a point in America’s history where its secular and spiritual cultures are beginning to recite a mantra of thought that says to 99% of its citizens that only 1% of it people have a chance to live out the American dream. But the crazy thing is how this 1% is worshiped by the 99% and thus cultural hierarchy is formed.  In other words, 1% of our human brothers and sisters have achieved celebrity status. Our cultural systems have become so perverted  that it only values, the best actor, best musician, largest net worth, the prettiest looks, the fastest runner, the team with the most wins, the pastor with the most followers, the guy with the best job, or the coolest car, or the family with medical benefits.

Phil 2:7-8 (NLT)  Instead he gave up his privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born a human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross.

The original purpose of competition was to bring out the best in everyone. However the effects of over honoring the success of winners creates what I call celebrity-ism and results in hierarchical structures in our secular and spiritual cultures. Examples of this can be seen in reality TV and in the Mega Churches.

If the goal is to convince every human that they are in fact a Child of God then an evaluation of the outcomes needs another review. Well-meaning television shows that try to help people lose weight, dress better or fix their business, in the end only help a few and quickly move their focus to the star of the show for ratings. The same is true for ministries. Likewise, the goal of helping everyone walking through the door of the church quickly becomes all about the tithe to keep the ministry afloat.

Jesus had a way of empowering everyone He met. He was always trying to get each person to look at their life situations from the spiritual perspective as opposed to the material perspective. In Luke 15 Jesus tells three parables about the rejoicing that takes place when something that is lost becomes found. This is the true celebrating that is needed today.

The truth that every person is loved by God, is the heart of what Jesus came to reveal. Humanity perceives itself to be separated from God and so it lavishes affection on the so-called best and brightest among us. We create our celebrity’s or demigods among ourselves so we can create a feeling that we are winners.  Even our electoral process causes us to reveal our feelings openly to the point we feel we must destroy the opponents of our choice. Fixing the competition with the focus on winning and losing is missing the point. Regardless of the last victory or lost we need to recreate our cultures so that everyone enjoys trying to overcome tougher and tougher challenges as a way of life.

Celebrity-ism has become the default perspective of the materialist. Even worst the spiritual perspective that elevates the totality of humanity to a place of equality is lost to many of our spiritual cultures. In the end these hierarchical and celebrity oriented cultures can only motivate out a sense of  jealously.  Today the children of America and the world are spiraling in their need to feel love (like winners) within their own cultures. For most cultures the only way to create this feeling of love is to impart shame and ridicule on others not in their sub-culture. If ever, any love was showed to another by one’s own culture, it would be treated as an act of betrayal.

Therefore competition has become a tool for choosing of winners and losers by many secular and spiritual sub-cultures to express love on its membership.  Our spiritual and secular cultures today desperately need a renewed vision if we are to make winners of all in humanity. Our definition of winning must not remain defaulted to “not losing”, but instead the fulfillment of overcoming the obstacles set before us. Jesus rightly brings out this point in the last part of the parable of the lost son.

Luke 15:31-32  “And he said to him, ‘Son, you are always with me, and all that I have is yours. 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’”

So let us go forth and celebrate everyone equally.

 

 

 

 

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Love or Fear, which is our motivation?

2012_04-15_900410_65609984The parable told by Jesus of the seed and the sower is a favorite of mine. Today I will keep this post short with the hope of planting a single seed into each heart that reads this post. The seed is in the question. I do so, because I believe this seed has the power to change the direction concerning the spiritual path that all humans travel. This seed is all about our awareness and it can awaken us to the true reality of our spiritual walk. This seed in its infancy, it is about the awareness and use of two words. The first is “love” and the second is “sin”.

Once this seed is s sown and takes root, it allows us to listen especially when we are engaged in a spiritual conversation. It provides the awaken conscience with a tool that allows one to make a mental tally of these two words.  At that point, any human is able to discern if the words going out from them or the words coming towards them are encoded with a motivation of love or fear.

The purpose of this seed is to help us continually evaluate our spiritual transformation process as we travel on our individual journeys. All humans are involved in long-term relationships and we daily meet new people.  This seed will mature into a useful internal spiritual tool that will provide great clarity. This seed starts out as a simple counter of two words and then over time it will grow and blossom internally with a robust capability that can nuance any thought.

While we continue on our spiritual journey, we need a tool to help us discern if the people around us are helping us to reach our goal of becoming aware that we are already one with God. It is my experience that most people are well-meaning however sometimes encouragement can be motivated by fear instead love. Fearful motivation may bring temporary benefits but it cannot sustain us on the journey of a lifetime.

You might be saying to yourself, why not use both words, encourage love, and remove sin? If the use of the both words were equal, I will agree with you. My only goal is to plant this seed so that it creates a capacity of internal awareness of our spiritual motivation. These two words and the motivational thoughts that accompany them are important if we are to reach our spiritual goal in this lifetime.

I bring no judgment. My only hope is that as this spiritual capability matures each of us will be able to discern the motivation behind the messages are coming at us and going from um us.  Even now that the seed has already been sown, we are more equipped to answer the question as we read it again.

Love or fear, which is our motivation?

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