Archive for religion

Faith vs Reality

Posted in belief, enlightenment, faith, life, logic, random, religion, secularism, theology, thoughts with tags , , on February 1, 2016 by chouck017894

Reality–the everyday problems which are experienced in this dimension of limited energy which we call life–is not being well served when believers are assured that Creation’s laws can be set aside if only you believe in a certain belief system manner. The universe would implode into nothingness if exceptions were allowed for a certain chosen or saved few to bypass Creation’s laws.  Scientific truth is being ignored when such egocentric beliefs are being marketed as ego stimulants, for the higher truth is that every identity within Creation stands accountable for itself.  The creative laws responsible for the universe cannot be sidestepped or patched over by man-invented rites and ritual or ceremony.  The Heaven and Paradise so fervently yearned for by faith system seekers can never be gained by practicing disrespect for the diversity and variety of other life forms or life styles which share this temporary passage through this limited energy field we speak of as matter.

Faith, the kind that does not rest on logic or open to acceptance of studies of powers invisible to us, is pretty much an inherited thing passed down from the parents and/or society, and it habitually lumbers under the mantle of some faith system which has evolved while its promoters have unethically pursued worldly ambitions.  Unfortunately their drive is to prove to the world that some man-contrived institutionalized faith system is the only way that a person can storm the Creator’s Heaven: That only signals that the bottom line for that promoted faith system rests entirely in this world, not in any higher realm.

Pretending that cosmic powers aid only some particular man-made faith system in extending control over this material world’s tribulations is tragically misleading.  Why would an omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent deity whom they claim to represent be directly dependent upon militant actions of mere man to fulfill that all-powerful deity’s wishes?  That illogical assertion is not consistent with the all-inclusive capabilities claimed for that imagined deity.  The escape propaganda used to get around this theological flaw is the claim that such strong arm devotional indulgences are necessary to “test” the believers’ devotion.  That really answers nothing, for why would an omniscient (all knowing) being ever find it necessary to “test” anything that he/she/it had created?  The only reason for such a hot air claim rests in the ego-driven greed of the “spiritual shepherds: for exercising authority, not to provide any genuine spiritual enlightenment for seekers.

The three highly organized major faith systems of the western world’s cultures–faith systems which are all fragmented by schisms–have each been structured by priest or prophet authors upon a not too subtle prejudice against the bearing principle (considered feminine) that is within the Source which is necessary for life multiplication.  This self-serving and cowardly propaganda has been set in place to “put the blame on woman” in an attempt to absolve the engendering principle within Source (considered male) from all the error and sin in the world.  This propaganda that the creative action which is necessary for bearing forth of matter form is somehow the cause of man’s woes is glaringly antagonistic with the man-is-superior assertion that the male authors penned. It is “holy” guidance such as this of godly approval of inequity that has contributed heavily to mankind’s seemingly endless wars and atrocities.

If the Omniscient power, personified and characterized as a male deity, finds that he/she/it must “test” his/her/its creations for worthiness that divine inclination for questioning any created object or event should be fully acceptable as a human characteristic if we are, as claimed, made in his image.  It is peculiar, therefore, that man-fashioned faith systems tend to abhor questions–especially so in regard to any question concerning their claims of divine authority.  To seriously question the powers-that-be of that faith system can make for some disquieting  conclusions.  One logical conclusion is that only con artists write religious rituals and rites and ceremonies.  That is provable because no one else like you or I really need such crafted public theatrical indulgences to experience personal connection to the all-embracing power in which we exist.  Rites and  ritual and ceremony serve the spiritual pretenders, however, as a means of exercising authority through inflicting a kind of intellectual tyranny which asserts that they and they alone represent what can only be imagined as some Divine Avenger.  That implied avenger conjures up what can only be called superstition which is fleshed out with liberal doses of the supernatural.  This is the intentional crucifixion of rationality nailed upon duplicity.  In that methodology reason is intentionally dishonored for the benefit of theologies.

Despite their implied intimacy with the Creator, true spiritual instruction remains mysteriously nebulous within the tons of man-authored texts which dare to pretend to teach spiritual qualification.  With these texts seekers are taught to reject the varieties and diversities of life expressions, to dismiss any differing way of expressing spiritual consciousness, and to install within themselves a devotion to man-crafted prejudices, bigotry, hatreds, and their religious inspired massacres and wars.  The unifying power that underlies the entire universe and its diversity is totally ignored for the self-imposed illusion fashioned by EGO for imagined exclusiveness with the Creator of that diversity.



Number Games in Holy Texts

Posted in Atheist, belief, Bible, faith, Hebrew scripture, prehistory, random, religion, scriptures, theology with tags , , , , , , , , on November 13, 2014 by chouck017894

In scriptural tales, when numbers were included in the texts, they invariably relayed hidden meaning to those trained in the art of sacred language. In ancient cultures, long before the rise of Judaism among the Hebrew tribes, numbers were considered to carry mystical significance. Virtually ignored by believers today is the fact that precise calculations were vital for many ancient observations and constructions which required several steps of computation which had to include and combine spherical geometry and trigonometry. As obvious as this should seem, the common opinion of the ancients has been that they understood only fundamental mathematics. Any fascination of mathematical exercise in prehistory cultures is thought to hold little implication. The number of persons such as is claimed within each of the Israelite tribes, however, do hold hidden significance for those trained in sacred language technique. Consider some other examples.

The number six, as in the six days of Creation, was regarded in ancient cultures as a balanced number, a “perfect” number, for 6 was seen as representative of Creation’s bearing principle–or the feminine aspect within Creation activity. Influenced by prehistory Creation lessons which had been given using various constellation illustrations, 6 was regarded as the first feminine number, for it represents the energy involvement out of Source which will “go forth and multiply.” In zodiac depictions we should note that the astrological sign Virgo is the sixth from Aries and tradition says Aries represents the head; also note that Virgo is the only female illustration in major zodiac signs. In the Genesis myth we are told that all Creation was whipped up in just six days. The number six was thus considered by the 8th century BCE priest-authors in Jerusalem as the number of God. And the sixth day of Creation was held as especial because man, considered as God’s highest achievement, was created on the sixth day. (The number 6, some have noted, holds the outline of a fetus in gestation.) Not so coincidently in Christian lore Jesus has credited to him as his sixth miracle his own transfiguration. This just happens to correspond to the sixth plane of energy involvement in prehistory Creation lessons which were in regard to primal energies moving into development as matter.

Interestingly, the ancient regard for the number six was eventually explained by the Greek philosopher-mathematician Pythagoras (c.582?-500 BCE). The number six was the first number among several that the followers of Pythagoras were taught as expressing the perfection upon which all that exists is anchored. It was their belief that numbers express the true nature of things. A number was regarded as “perfect” if it is equal to the sum of its proper divisors. A proper divisor is a number which divides another number exactly, and the number six, for example, equals 1+2+3. Other numbers regarded as “perfect” are 28, 496, 8128, and 33440336.

Augustine, the Christian saint, expounded upon the mathematical endowment of the number six (never mentioning Pythagoras) saying, “Six is the number perfect in itself, and not because God created all things in six days: rather the inverse is true; God created all things in six days because this number is perfect. And it would remain perfect even if the work of six days did not exist.”

Another number from prehistory Creation accounts is the number four (4). In prehistory Creation lessons the fourth stage involvement of primal elements concerned creative energy as it flowed toward manifestation as defined matter. In scriptural versions this fourth elemental energy involvement was commonly disguised with a zero added. Examples: 40 days of rain in the Noah account, the 40 years of wandering in the Moses epic, and in each case they attained their destiny after passing through four elementary energy developmental stages. This is also the coded meaning in the account of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead after Lazarus had “…lain in the grave four days already” (John 11). It is not accidental that there are four canonized Gospels either, each providing developmental phases of the Life Principle, personified as Jesus, who represents the universality of all life. Nor is it accidental that the supposed authors of those Gospels are symbolized with the four deliberately jumbled divisional signs from the zodiac. Matthew is signified with the Ox (Taurus), Mark is symbolized with the Lion (Leo), Luke is represents with Man (Aquarius), and John is represented with the eagle, which in Jewish astrology symbolized Scorpio. And in Christian accounts there are the four horsemen of the Apocalypse (Revelations 6:1-8), which were deliberately jumbled by color descriptions to disguise the symbolism borrowed from prehistory lessons on Creation’s elementary involvement.

In Genesis 32:14, where the dishonesty of Jacob is celebrated, other numbers convey disguised meaning. Jacob is portrayed as indulging in a schemed peace-making deal with his brother Esau from whom he had earlier stolen the “birthright” blessing of their father. As a peace-offering Jacob is portrayed as giving Esau “…two hundred she-goats and twenty-two he-goats” as a token of his good will. That number 220 happens to be the first among particular numbers which were regarded by Pythagoras to be charged with “friendly” vibrations. The reason for this respect was that certain numbers, such as 220 and 284, are each equal to the sum of the proper divisors of the other. [The proper divisors of 220 are: 1, 2, 4, 5, 10, 11, 20, 44, 55, and 110. These are numbers which divide evenly into a number, including 1, but excluding the number itself.]

We today tend to forget that many ancient cultures were highly sophisticated and were well acquainted with mathematics, medicinal, scientific, geometric, astronomical and psychological principles. The principle known in mathematics as pi is commonly thought to be of rather recent understanding. But it is interesting to note that ancient Babylonian and Egyptian mathematicians were quite familiar with the fact that the ratio of the circumference to the diameter of a circle is a constant, or what we know as pi. And they understood also that pi is no ordinary constant, for its precise value can never be known, and thus the constant holds the special status of being transcendental. This is so because not only is it a decimal that does not repeat, but neither does it terminate.

The prehistory mathematicians were well aware also of other numbers which shared the baffling properties of pi. As an example, the ratio of the diagonal to the side of a square is also a decimal that neither repeats nor ends. And a diagonal line drawn through a square results in two right triangles whose hypotenuse is the diagonal with the sides of the square which act as the sides of the two triangles. Such a diagonal division of space within a square which is symbolized in this manner is therefore mathematically equivalent to the division of light from darkness in Genesis 1:4, the division of waters from waters in Genesis 1:6, and even the provisional division as male and female in Genesis 1:27. And the ratio of two intergers[1] is calculated by a decimal which neither repeats itself nor ends, and it is this “irrational number” which can be said to be representative of God in the seemingly irrational scriptural storytelling. [1 An integer is any number or a set of positive whole numbers, such as 1, 2, 3 and zero.] Major “prophets”–Elijah for example–are portrayed as parting waters, and multiplying life essentials (bread, fish, oil, etc.), each in a one-time-only creation deal. This represents the division of energy for positive/negative exchange which makes for multiplication of creative energies.

Persons who are prone to regard biblical tales as having been written by or dictated by God become a bit upset when the authors of holy word seem to get tripped up by principles of mathematics. The account of the resplendent temple allegedly erected by King Solomon (1 Kings 7:23), for example, falls a wee bit short in the calculations of the “molten sea”–a huge circular tank which is said to have held water for religious ceremonies. That holy holding pool is described as being “…ten cubits from one brim to the other…and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about.” This would mean that the value of pi is casually rounded off as three–somewhat at odds with the true value of 3.14159+. The contention presented in this tale thus exposes the fraudulent claim that direct divine wisdom was being relayed to seekers, for it is impossible to make a circle which has a diameter of ten cubits and a circumference of an even thirty.

Not surprisingly the obsession of using numbers as an indication of divine purpose was carried over by the Roman Empire authors of the New Testament as another technique aimed to attract Jewish converts. It is not exactly coincidence therefore that Jesus is depicted as having been crucified on the 6th day of the week. And there is the miracle of Jesus multiplying five loaves of bread and two fishes (Pisces) to feed followers (Matthew 14:19), which, we should remember, occurred after he had improved upon the miracle of parting waters by walking upon them. Speaking of fish consider, in the book of John 21:11 (written c. 105-106 CE), the number of fish allegedly caught by disciples at the Sea of Tiberius (better known as the Sea of Galilee) was 153. This happening is depicted as having taken place after Jesus had shown himself for the third time after his crucifixion. The peculiar number 153 in this professed happening is another which happens to be mathematically special. It is known as a triangular (three-sided) number, for it is equal to the sum of the integers from 1 to 17. In other words, if a triangle was a diagram with figures of fish, and the triangle measured 17x17x17, it would contain exactly 153 same-sized fish. Nothing miraculous here, nothing supernatural–just a mathematical exercise used in storytelling to imply their faith systems’ divine power over natural forces. From such as this we are indebted to “revealed” sacred truth.

A Jealous God

Posted in Atheist, belief, Bible, faith, Hebrew scripture, random, religion, scriptures, theology with tags , , , , , , , on October 11, 2014 by chouck017894

According to the old priest-written Hebrew Scriptures any villany or atrocity could be indulged in and excused as long as you believed that a judgmental, prejudiced, reclusive god offered you his protection (at a price of obedience to some self-appointed mouthpieces). The personality of the aloof creator-god was openly stated in some versions of the second Commandment, “…for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God.” And in Exodus 34:14 seekers were further reminded, “For thou shalt worship no other god: for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous god.” That godly characteristic of jealousy allowed, in turn, the associated holy flaws such as belligerence, intolerance, vindictiveness, violence, pugnacity, warmongering, and a raft of similar niceties. In truth those imagined godly characteristics were unconsciously crafted upon the priest-author’s own ambitions for material control, and their own personal flaws of character were subconsciously tacked onto that imagined being. The faith system that was thus crafted in holy book form pointedly revolved around a never seen deity who can be characterized only as their faith system’s indestructible defender. This holy avenger angle was a lucrative promotional tactic which would also be utilized in the founding and crafting of a couple of other by-the-book faith systems which now dominate western cultures.

However, nowhere in those many volumes of holy writ is it ever explained why an omniscient (all-knowing), omnipotent (all-powerful), omnipresent (present everywhere) Creator should be racked with such a pathetic human frailty as jealousy. There have, however, been many attempts to get around this apparent weakness–primarily by trying to reinterpret the Hebrew word ganna, which is traditionally translated as “jealous.” Considering that an ultimate power created everything, what could there possibly exist that would cause “him” to suffer the pangs of jealousy? Jealousy is a form of covetousness. Such an idea of godly psychosis only serves to weaken a seeker’s trust. Jealousy is intolerant of rivalry, an emotional weakness that flounders in insecurity, a fear of being supplanted, a distress of possessiveness, an apprehension of ownership–in short, a neurosis.

Nonetheless, Exodus 20:5 portrays the Lord God confessing, “…for I, the Lord thy God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them…” Let’s face it, that is excessively neurotic. Then in Deuteronomy 4:24 we are told, “For the Lord thy God is a consuming fire, even a jealous God.” And this gets reinforced in Deuteronomy 5:9 where it again relates, “…for I, the Lord thy God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the…” etc. As noted, this supposedly jealous disposition of the Creator Lord conveniently flings the doors wide open for mankind (especially the faith system believers) to practice all the other flaws which habitually accompany jealousy. This is even admitted in Proverbs 6:34, which reminds us, “For rage of a man is jealousy; therefore he will not spare in the day of vengeance.” This is further typified in-depth in the later book of the visionary Ezekiel 5+, the whole chapter of which pretty much extends holy justification for murderous indulgences by the faithful who, in their egoism, believe they are the “chosen” favorites of the jealous Creator.

Through millennia there have been countless apologists who have attempted to counter the negativity held in the emotion of jealousy which is attributed to God in holy writ. And the fancy sidestepping they have indulged in has been something like watching hip-hop dancers who can seem somewhat gracefully disjointed but awesome in their own right. God’s jealousy has been often likened by apologists to the Lord being zealous (which sounds a lot like jealous), or that god waxes enthusiastic or ardent or fervent in “his” commitment for intelligent life. (Perhaps concern for the intelligent part should be stressed more to the unquestioning believers.) In this way the apologists may then split hairs and say, as did the Reverend C. H. Spurgeon in 1863, that, “…there is such a thing as virtuous jealousy.” He also asserted in a sermons that “…jealousy, like anger, is not evil in itself, or it could never be ascribed to God; his jealousy is ever pure and holy.” If that sounds somewhat incongruous it is the stuff that blind faith thrives on. On the other hand, who among us is familiar with the subtleties that are waterlogged within the fountainhead of Creation? Still and all, it is unlikely in that distant timeframe that the priest-authors of the Old Testament would have couched their implications with such iffy phraseology. Those devious priest-authors aggressively sought to exercise authority and control, so it is not exactly in error that the Hebrew word ganna wound up being translated as Jealous, or that this emotional instability can be identified through human indulgence which typically leans toward intolerance and fearfulness of being supplanted.

The aforementioned Reverend Spurgeon may be forgiven his pulpit jockeying over the Lord’s jealousy back in the 1860s for the word does happen to be derived from the medieval Latin word zelosus (no, that is not misspelled, it is Latin). The Latin zelosus, from the Greek zelus, does mean zeal, and a zealous Lord sounds so much more respectful than a jealous one. Or does it? Zeal is an ardent self-commitment to something–a cause, ideal, goal–an enthusiasm and/or devotion in the pursuit of some emotional reassurance. Zeal and fanaticism happen to be unquestionably interchangeable, as history repeatedly demonstrates. Back in the Roman Empire timeframe the members of the Jewish sect which resisted Roman rule in Palestine were referred to a zealots. They feared being supplanted. Thus to this day, inspired by priest-written scriptural lore, the incongruity over God’s alleged jealousy remains. And we are left to ponder why should the all-powerful Creator-Lord of everything be either jealous or zealous about anything he/she/it created?

Desert Reality and Divine Delusions

Posted in Atheist, belief, faith, random, religion with tags , , , , , , on August 23, 2014 by chouck017894

The prophet Mohammad was probably born c 560 CE; this is the most likely date out of eight dates that have been given in various accounts of his life. In the days of his boyhood there was no central authority to weld nomadic tribes with any social consciousness. Rather, each tribe existed as a single and separate entity that was in constant competition with other tribes for the essentials of life. Under such conditions personal retaliation was the only “law” that they understood when loss was experienced due to another tribe or person. “Justice” was therefore understood as imposing an extortion of payment; in other words, indulgence in vendetta. That is a feature which still erupts from the background of Islam, for that tribal retaliation mindset remains the heart and soul of Muslim conduct with all whom they choose to judge to be “infidels.” The natural outcome of the vendetta mindset was a state of perpetual warlike conditions among the tribes, for each retaliation necessitated in turn the opponents’ retaliation. Such ongoing irrational indignities were brought to a standstill among the tribes only during the mutually agreed upon times of religious observances at Mecca. Mohammad, however, grandiosely claimed to be counseled by Allah and thus chose not to respect such rationality. (The recognition of Allah was derived from an earlier tribal designation al-Lah, meaning High God in a pantheon of earlier Arab gods.)

The Arabs up to the general timeframe of Mohammad’s youth had long observed a custom of addressing the planet Venus as al-Uzza, meaning “The Mighty One,” and it was by that name that Mohammad had worshipped it as a youth. The Sabeans (Sabaeans), the ancient inhabitants of the kingdom of Saba (Sheba), regarded the Moon as the visible symbol of their principal deity. The birth festival associated with this deity occurred in the tenth month by Arab reckoning (which equals the 24th of December in western cultures), with the birth of the “Lord Moon” being celebrated on that night. This provides the reason for the emblem of Islam being the crescent new Moon and a single star. The true relationship of Earth circling the sun occurring at that time of year was not recognized as important for they regarded the sun as feminine.

During his merchant travels Mohammad had plenty of opportunity to listen to Jewish and Christian merchants speak of their faiths. Gradually Mohammad apparently grew to understand that his youthful adoration of al-Uzza (Venus), as one of three bannat al-Lab, or “Daughters of God,” had been focused upon the symbol of past celestial turmoil. The other two “Daughters of God” were known as al-Lat, “the goddess,” and Manat, “the Fateful One.” These three deities were of especial importance to the Arabs of the Hejaz in the time of Mohammad’s youth. (Within Hejaz in NW Arabia are Mecca and Medina, the holy places of Islam.) Influenced by Jewish and Christian tales Mohammad apparently concluded that those revered stones could not rightfully represent the Sustainer out of which the legendary events had occurred.

The implied kinship, “Daughters of God,” and also the reference to the three “sisters” as bannat al-dabr, meaning “daughters of fate,” seemed to hint of past tribulations and woe for Earth.* Further indication that these “daughters” were linked to past Venus-Earth turmoil is the fact that the three deities had been represented with large standing stones, not as comprehensible feminine forms. Thus in the Quran (53:19-26) the question is raised in regard to having formerly worshipped al Uzza, al-Lat, and Manat, calling them “…nothing but empty names which you have invented–you and your forefathers–for which God has bestowed no warrant from on high.” Nonetheless, a meteorite stone, which probably hurtled to Earth during one of the encounters with the planet-sized comet which had disturbed the orbits of both Earth and Mars became the cornerstone of the Muslim shrine Kaaba.

The association of al Uzza, al-Lat and Manat in Arabic culture is thus far older than Mohammad. The legends and folklore among the Arab tribes concerning past celestial terrors associated with Venus would naturally color Mohammad’s interpretation of a divine being. This background of star-associated legends gives added dimension to the romanticized picturing of Mohammad meditating under the crescent moon — and perhaps concentrating on the planet Venus.

It is said that Mohammad, during his youth, had traveled widely with his tradesman uncle, and he continued to travel widely after he had become a prosperous merchant himself. This traveling merchant connection has led some scholars to speculate that his wide-ranging journeys provided abundant opportunity to hear the religious claims of both the Jews and Christians. The theory is that the stories that he heard from members of each faith as they read from their holy books inspired him, and this, they say, is evident in the use of biblical characters in his later dictations. The muddle of these recited tales must have seemed bewildering to the prophet. Somewhere amid all this, possibly as he meditated upon the planet Venus under a crescent new moon while on Mount Hira, Mohammad is claimed to have had a “vision.”

Islam’s origins, even though well within the framework of verifiable history, is strangely imprecise. Islam’s traditions of a desert prophet passing along angelic revelations to a ragtag band of followers, although colorful and inspiring, is rejected by main scholars. The underlying reason is the historically verifiable rapid politcal success of the movement, which indicates that something much more secular was at work than patient heaven customarily sponsors. An omniscient Creator would find it creatively impractical to promote the self-contradictory term “holy war” as a devotional duty: worldly conquest can hardly be an obsession for an omniscient, omnipotent, omnipresent Creator.

Mohammad died unexpectedly in 632. Strangely, the prophet had provided no instruction as to who was to carry on his holy work, for he left no male heir to continue the prophetic lineage. This lack of foresight regarding future leadership naturally resulted in confusion and uncertainty concerning Allah’s desires on how the Arab people were to conduct themselves. That question of entitlement over who was intended to represent Mohammad’s spiritual vision is still violently contested between the Sunni and Shia to this day in continuous tribal-style conflicts.

Abushing Spirit

Posted in Atheist, belief, Bible, faith, Hebrew scripture, random, religion, scriptures with tags , , , , , , on June 15, 2014 by chouck017894

All scriptural texts of man’s contrivance have a lot of hatred enshrined throughout their many pages. The Bible, the “good book,” for example, is correctly speaking a library of books, all of which were purely man-conceived and designed to provide those authors with bogus authority over the people who might seek spiritual enlightenment. Instilling a sense of guilt is underhandedly injected from the very first book, Genesis, with Eve and Adam allegedly being tossed out of Eden for having “fallen” from god’s favor; the catch 22 allusion of original sin in this plotline was thus established early on, which allowed the priest class a chokehold on all subsequent generations.

Man-concocted faith systems have the tendency to exalt themselves by routinely focusing on the differences and the dissimilar features and characteristics that give life its radiant and diverse range. The creative, unifying force in which life is expressed is too often imagined in “sacred” accounts to be mainly concerned with the dilemmas of only one narrow selection of human species in one small region on planet Earth, and which just happens to represent that particular faith system. Such a narrow understanding of life and spirit’s significance in relation to the rest of the universe has resulted in many carefully cultivated hatreds which have for centuries set the stage for persistent and unnecessary conflicts.

Reason and knowledge are seriously constrained when self-serving faith systems labor to impose preconceptions of any kind to hover over people’s interactions with others. In man-structured faith systems, for example, seekers are indoctrinated and continuously conditioned with claims that it is only through their particular dreamed-up rites and rituals that they can attain the favoritism of the Creative Life Principle, which is personified as a humanlike “God.” But the universe and nature do not reflect that severely restrictive disposition in which the diversity and variety of life is continually formulated and made manifest by the Life Principle.

Promoting the idea of godly hatred toward anything which is made manifest within Creation is the greatest act of blasphemy that can be indulged in by any organized faith system. An organized, highly structured hierarchial faith system inflicts orderliness, methodology, regulation, systematization, inflexible rules, and narrow interpretations, most of which pretty much fly in the face of universal tolerance for variety and diversity within life experience. But these man-contrived faith systems take advantage of the fact that even their despicable posturing is tolerated in the democratic flexibility of Creation.

When the Creative Life Principle is imagined to be in man’s image, there is left scant room for any believer to ever attain their highest potential. Since all man-concocted faith systems have long histories of indulging in each and every one of the indulgences said to be hated by god, the followers should remember that a spiritually wise man questions every extreme of passion–especially in those professing to be spiritual guides. After all, the creative Life Principle installed a brain within man with the expectation that man would practice rationality so man could establish his own relationship with that creative power. It is alarming, therefore, that our personal connection to the Life Principle is so often negatively approached in so many “holy” books such as in (OT) Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Deuteronomy, Ezra, Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and hatreds are expressed in (NT) Matthew, Luke, Ephesians, Romans, Titus, 1 John, Hebrews, and Revelation. And in the Quran there are well over one hundred verses of outright murderous hatred encouraged!

Samples of alleged godly hatred: Proverbs 6:16 lists “…six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination to him.” The “things” that are subsequently listed by the priest-author certainly cannot be assessed as ethical conduct, and so the list of god’s alleged hatreds are actually extreme negative social interaction practices. To frighten followers into ethical conduct the priest-authors therefore asserted that the Creator turns livid over: 1) a proud look, 2) a lying tongue, 3) hands that shed innocent blood, 4) a heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, 5) feet that be swift in running to mischief, 6) a false witness that speaketh lies, and 7) he that soweth discord among brethren.* (There is not a faith system in existence that has not indulged in every one of these.) In Ecclesiastes 3, pretended holy insight has it that everything has its appointed time and even lists “a time to kill (3), and “a time to hate (8). (*It was from the Proverbs list that Pope Gregory I, “the great”, 590-604, elaborated upon the “seven deadly sins,” which a lower priest had commented upon years earlier but received no credit.)

In the New Testament, Luke 14:26, even has Jesus avowing, “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother and wife and children and bothers and sisters, yes, and even his own soul, he cannot be my disciple.” That is rather strong validation that what is recorded in those tales is not divine disclosure which was relayed from an omniscient being to a few favored priest-scribes. The words put into Jesus’ mouth by the interpreters are the very principles which are routinely untilized in cults promoting their faith system practices.

And in the Quran there are, as noted, well over one hundred verses which actually summon Muslims to indulge in violent hatred and outright murder. Indeed, the verses which implant murderous hatred as expressed in the Quran exceed all the expressions of hatred which appear in the combined Old and New Testaments. As a “spiritual” guidebook it is certainly something of an oxymoron for Muslims to claim the Quran guides a religion of peace. Mohammad’s constant “message” is the contention that everyone is an enemy to his spiritual tribe. For example: in the Quran 8:65 it is averred, “O Prophet, exhort the believers to fight.” No Islamist dares ask why, if Allah knows all and created all, he should have to relay his maintenance directives through a caravan merchant when he, Allah, could directly instill in every brain whatever information he desired. The overused excuse is that Allah, who knows all, found it necessary to use a prophet or messenger as a means to test everyone. This echoes the same “test” that was supposedly imposed upon Abraham who, it is claimed, was instructed by God to sacrifice his only son Isaac as a test of faith. An omniscient (all-knowing) god would have absolutely no reason to “test” anything.

Islam is not a faith system which reflects any genuine enlightenment value of tolerance toward the Creator’s use of diversity and variety in life expressions. That failing is not an exclusive trait of their faith, for as we have recounted here all man-concocted faith systems were built and function under the premise of submit and obey the faith systems’ manipulative procedures.

To the credit of humankind, however, that which is assessed as “spirit” is evolving among the broader masses. The allegations that the Life Principle, personified as God or Allah, would hold hatred toward any of the diverse and varied manifestations of life are slowly evaporating under the pursuit of true enlightenment. Unfortunately old tribal distrusts which habitually flavored so much of all man-written “holy” texts still pollute “spirit” like malignant cancer cells.

Sacred Hints on Sin-Dodging

Posted in Atheist, belief, Christianity, faith, Hebrew scripture, history, life, random, religion, scriptures, theology with tags , , , , , , , on December 19, 2013 by chouck017894

Sin, the alleged estrangement from God due to transgressing what is claimed to be God’s “known will,” is the age-old whip of faith system chieftains. The superstition that offending some god, directly or inadvertently, brings about disastrous consequences seemed plausible in the hostile conditions of primal forests or in the depths of gloomy caves. That trait, born of fear of the unknown, is cast into the DNA of animate life as a self-preserving attribute. That natural preservation trait, unfortunately, can be mined like a vein of gold by crafty schemers for their means of control.

By chapter three of Genesis, after the compressed account of Creation is dispensed with, the plot jumps rapidly into the introduction of sin with Eve nibbling fruit from the do-not-touch Tree of Knowledge. For this alleged sinful incident not only was Eve, Adam and the serpent given a death sentence, but all life forms were condemned to experience God’s endless indulgence in vengeance! Sin is then installed as a vicious circle in Genesis 4:7 with God allegedly saying to Adam and Eve’s son, Cain, “If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door.” Cain, not understanding the concept of “sin,”–perhaps because mom Eve had already tainted all life with “original sin”–by the very next verse (8) he kills his brother Abel. Now that is divine speed-plotting. But God’s earlier condemning judgment upon sin is then shown to be amendable in his setting a protective mark upon Cain’s head so he can avoid consequences. Thus did “sin” become the meal ticket for the CEOs of any western faith system.

The great pivotal moment in sacred “history,” according to 8th century BCE priest-authored accounts, hinges upon the Lord’s alleged call for Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac as a burnt offering to receive special blessings. The Jews celebrate that alleged irrational incident of Abraham’s unquestioning obedience (Rosh Hashanah) as representative of their faith system’s especial characteristic–this despite the fact that in the Genesis timeframe Judaism was not yet an organized faith system. Was Isaac to be a sin offering? It is never said precisely why God would have asked for such a depraved act. Some suggest that it was a test of Abraham’s devotion, but if God is omniscient (all-knowing) as claimed, what could he possibly be uncertain about? As the story is depicted (by the priest authors), neither God nor Abraham inspire any spiritual admiration. And why would Isaac be such a spineless wimp? For some spiritual cowards, however, Isaac is held to be the first Jewish martyr (although Judaism was then far from its 8th century BCE invention as an organized faith system). Functionally, there can be only one purpose for this tale: since God, the personification of the Life Principle, would never condone such child abuse, the story purpose in the priest-written texts is aimed at encouraging submission and obedience to the priest-manufactured faith system.

In the later priest-written book of Leviticus (18:7), jammed between Exodus and Numbers, this priestly lust for ugly showmanship is highlighted in a shift-the-guilt rite–allegedly with God’s okay–from the guilty party to some hapless victim. The alleged God-approved instructions read, “And he shall take the two goats and set them before the Lord at the door of the tent of meeting. And Aaron shall cast lots upon the two goats; one lot for the Lord, and the other for Azazel.” We should note here that the word “tent” was commonly used as an occult reference to the primordial energy planes out of which Creation is made manifest, which is why it is referred to as the “tent of meeting.” To retain their authority the arrogant priests indulged themselves in the slaughter of one goat on the Temple altar, and sent the other hapless goat out into the wilds to be torn apart by predators. Or, depending upon location, the other goat was hurled by priests from a cliff to be cruelly dashed upon the jagged rocks below. Supposedly Azazel was imprisoned beneath the mount.

Nowhere is it ever explained in Hebrew or Jewish myths why the “Lord”–a self-admitted jealous god–would ever sanction such a custom of equal offerings, for by presenting identical offerings it is openly admitted that Azazel was considered to be the equal to God. Consider also that the name Azazel is said to mean “God strengthens,” so the implication seems to be that one aspect of the creative Source, active as the Life Principle, cannot be honored without the other. What this tale inadvertently reveals is that the Source power cannot create and bring all things into existence except through an interactive process of positive/negative energy exchange and interaction.

Even in this twenty-first century of space flights and instantaneous communications around the planet there are still Orthodox Jews who practice the ancient bloody ritual of slaughtering hapless animal life (such as chickens) in an appeal to God for personal forgiveness. In Los Angeles, California, for example, there are Orthodox Jews seeking to save themselves from sin through such indulgence in animal abuse.

The Roman “fathers” and “saints” of Christianity (such as Paul, Jerome, Augustine, etc.) enthusiastically took up the sin entrapment tactic along with the submit-and-obey features of the faith by asserting how Jesus was sacrificed for the sins of the world. On that occasion, however, God did not see any reason to substitute a ram or goat (or whatever) for the spectacle. What is the reason for such spiritual injustice? Allegedly because God so loved the world that he would allow mankind to sidestep responsibility for its sins by letting his “only begotten son” be sacrificed!

Why should this alleged God-approved torture and homicide of his own “beloved” and “only begotten” son inspire the world with any spiritual love or trust? Such a concept hinges upon pre-Christian societies of the Near and Mid East in which no rite was seen to hold more august power than the sacrifice of the king or the king’s son for the redemption of the king’s people. That was impressed upon Roman awareness around 60 BCE when the Roman general Pompey captured Jerusalem, which was then weakened due to the power struggle between the two sons of King Aristobulus. Pompey installed one son, Hyreau, as high priest, and took the other brother, Antigonus (along with his sons), to Rome as displays of triumph. Eventually, however, it was Antigonus who became priest-king of Jerusalem and in his short reign before being taken by Marc Antony in 37 BCE he had slain his own two sons–presumably as sacrifice for the welfare of the people. The whole mystery ritual of redemption seemed to the Jews to be played out once again for them when Antigonus himself was scourged, then bound to the stake, and then beheaded. The Jews chose to see in this his sacrifice to redeem his people.

As noted, exploiting scapegoats, as promoted in Leviticus, was always subtly promoted in Hebrew Scriptures. Unfortunately, the only standard that such alleged godly allowance for subjecting a substitute for the guilty is that it encourages the faithful to always look for ways to sidestep responsibility for themselves. All they need do in either Judaism or Christian practice is pass the buck or find a scapegoat–then they will be free to ascend to Heaven on a comfortable mattress of lies. The rest of God’s creations can go to hell.

Three Crosses, Earthquakes and Darkened Skies

Posted in Atheist, belief, Christianity, faith, life, prehistory, random, religion, scriptures, theology with tags , , , , , on October 24, 2013 by chouck017894

Christian faith became symbolized by a severe cross only after the 300 CE timeframe. Before that general timeframe the cult from which a corporate-style church would be founded had represented themselves by two arced lines which resembled a fish. This was partially due to an understanding that Earth’s full entry into the Age of Pisces had occurred c. 60 BCE. It was seen as an auspicious time for a gentler faith than had been represented in the previous zodiacal ages of bull sacrifice (Age of Taurus) and ram (lamb) sacrifice (Age of Aries).

In the events that allegedly led up to the crucifixion, there is the token offering allegedly made by Pontius Pilate to the Jews in honor of their feast day (Passover) giving amnesty for a criminal: Jews were to choose between Jesus and another criminal to be pardoned from execution. The name of the pardoned man is given as Barabbas, which happens to mean “son of the father.” Something is implied here, for that name would seem to be more appropriate reference to Jesus if he was, as claimed, the “only begotten son of God.”

We should remember that two thousand years ago the sentence of crucifixion was the punishment handed out to persons of the Roman Empire who had been involved in some traitorous or violent antigovernment activity. Ordinary thieves, for example, did not merit that sadistic punishment of political crimes. So the dramatic touch of three crosses on the apex of a hill with Jesus, the personification of the Life Principle, in the center carried coded meaning to those who shared secret ancient teachings; the alleged scene did not adhere to standard procedures.

In the passion drama of the Christian crucifixion it is related that Jesus was crucified between two thieves. The book of Matthew 27:38 relates, “Then there were two thieves crucified with him, one on the right hand, and another on the left.” In the later book of Saint John 19:18 it is explained, “Where they crucified him, and two others, with him, on either side one, and Jesus in the midst…” Note: The two are called “thieves” here. In Greek texts, we should note, the men on each side of Jesus were described as lestai, which means “thugs” or “brigands”—or what we might think of as resistance fighters. This certainly makes it sound more politically authentic, but despite the more plot-worthy Greek version the fact remains that no official records of such a happening have ever been found. On the other hand, official record offices were often burned down in the many Jewish rebellions.

As the drama is traditionally accepted, the question of who was really responsible for the execution of Jesus hangs uncertainly between the Romans and the Jews. Crucifixion was the Roman method of disposing of political rebels, but Pontius Pilate washed his hands of the setup. The argument is put forth by some that Jesus was associated with Zealots who rejected Roman rule: the Zealots were indeed most emphatic that they did not recognize the legitimacy of Herod-appointed priests serving in the Temple of Solomon. So the blame for the death sentence is (conveniently) a toss-up. And where did the tradition of three crosses at one specific hilltop on Earth originate? Gospel accounts of Mark, Matthew and John provide differing and very few details much like a passion play formula, and, as pointed out, two common thieves (or even lestai) would not be crucified, which was primarily the punishment for political activists against the Roman government. There was in these sparse story elements an extremely important message to those who had privileged access to knowledge taught in mystery schools of that timeframe which explained the involving energy processes of Creation. Knowing the ancient teachings that were once given with constellation illustrations explains why Jesus, the Life Principle, was portrayed as telling only one of the “thieves” that he would enter Heaven with him. Luke 23:43 tells us that Jesus told the thief on his right, “This day shalt thou be with me in Paradise.”

In this Christianized version refashioned from prehistory teachings, Jesus personifies the Life Principle; thus the “thief” on his left represents the involving primal elements which amass into defined energy-as-matter-form, and the “thief” on the right represents the transcendence of those creative energies into higher frequency dimensions: hence the “thief” on his right would “enter Heaven.” This is the Life Principle speaking to the evolutionary side of the Creation process. If this is not true then it means that the savior was guilty of dispensing conditional love, and that is not considered to be a divine attribute! From this manufactured holy account, however, the faith system acquired another “saint,” and the so-called “good thief” is addressed as “Saint Dismas.”

In the book of Matthew, the second Gospel to be written, in verse 27 referring to the crucifixion it is elaborated, “And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom, and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent…” Then it is alleged in Luke 23 that following the crucifixion there was “…a darkness over all the earth”, which is claimed to have lasted from the sixth hour to the ninth hour. Oddly, the first written Gospel, Mark, said nothing of such traumatizing happenings. And strangely, these unusual and frightening events were never mentioned in any contemporary records or chronicles. This despite the fact that Roman officials (such as Pontius Pilate) kept some of the most detailed records of events of any era. Nor did any noted Roman historian ever report on such abnormal happenings. The reason for these claims of supernatural happenings, which are not recorded in any legitimate chronicle, is that the whole episode, as with the three crosses, is drawn upon ancient teachings of elementary energies as source of Creation which were once explained using constellations as their illustration. These lesson divisions are represented even today with the zodiac signs, a clock-like diagram, so the “hours between six and nine” refer to the lessons which covered the span of self-aware matter-life that were given with the signs Leo, Virgo and Libra. (In those ancient Creation-cosmology lessons, Aquarius, the water sign, was at the twelve o’clock position—and represent the same waters of Creation spoken of in Genesis.) These lessons, “the sixth to ninth hour,” concerned Creation’s energies at the developmental stage where defined physical matter-forms with self-awareness are made manifest. In other words, the darkening (or congealing) of energy into matter (as “all the earth” referred to in Luke.)

The next prehistory lesson that followed the matter signs was presented with constellation Scorpio, which concerned transfiguration. The “veil of the temple” which Matthew said was rent apart refers to the further division of Creation energies—the primal energies of undefined prototypal matter formation (spoken of as Involution) being transformed with aware-consciousness which is to be tempered and refined in limited matter form from which it is to transcend. Essentially this energy dimension continues the same process which was allegorically depicted with God parting the waters in Genesis when Creation was activated.

This point also clarifies a curious story element found in Luke 23:34 where Jesus allegedly said from the cross, “Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do.” Even as divine as Jesus is declared to be, the physical agony endured in crucifixion makes it unlikely that he could have spoken lucidly. Furthermore, the distance from the noisy milling crowd would have made such a speech virtually inaudible. But the alleged words do adhere to the ancient teachings, for here is depicted the Life Principle suspended upon a symbol of matter forgiving the primal circumstances that delivers aware-consciousness into its evolutionary potential. The forgiveness expressed in this incident is therefore from the perspective of divine indifference, which is to say there is nothing in these evolving energy processes that is to be condemned.

But that non-condemning aspect of those ancient teachings provided no faith system career opportunities.

More details on prehistory teachings are available in the books The Shiny Herd (Ancient Secrets Hidden in the Sky), and in The Celestial Scriptures (Keys to the Suppressed Wisdom of the Ancient), both by this author.

When Mediterranean Cultures Discovered Judaism

Posted in Atheist, belief, Bible, faith, Hebrew scripture, history, prehistory, random, religion, scriptures with tags , , , , , , on September 14, 2013 by chouck017894

After the conquest of the Near East by Alexander the Great, c. 332 BCE, there was a gradual and steady increase of awareness and recognition among the Mediterranean cultures in regard to the Judeans. In this 300 BCE timeframe the Etruscans had submitted to Rome, and the Etruscan influence would contribute significantly to Roman culture in matters of ritual and religion. And it was around 300 BCE, in the Hellenistic period, that foreign observers began to investigate about the laws, traditions and customs of the Jewish people. In this general timeframe the Torah, purportedly giving a continuous narrative of the Creation of the world to the death of Moses, had been canonized (by priest-authors) as God’s official word. Strangely, God never showed up to testify personally, so the priestly verdict was all based on circumstantial necessities for retaining authority.

The Greek skeptic, historian and philosopher Hecataeus of Abdera (4th century BCE) recorded observations of Jewish life in his work Peri Hyperborean. Hecataeus noted with some wonderment the Jewish traditions which in that timeframe lavished their conspiring priests with highest prestige, and he pondered over the tribal laws given in the books of Leviticus and Deuteronomy which prevailed over Jewish social legislation. Indeed, the Jewish monarchy which had crystallized with King Josiah (died 608? BCE), was the same timeframe in which Deuteronomy had been conveniently discovered—in the walls of the Temple no less. But by this later 300 BCE timeframe, royalty had become completely overshadowed: kingship had given way once again to priestly authority.

Jews, Hecataeus noted, were more fanatically devoted to their God than were most Pagan cultures that he had encountered. That Jewish devotion to an unseen being was more strangling than Pagan spirituality which retained a closer affiliation with Nature in which the Pagan recognized the interlocking energy aspects that were eternally at work. The Pagans respected those creative energy aspects as godlike in their displayed energy attractions. The Jews, on the other hand, long dominated by priest-transmitted commandments, had been conditioned for generations through use of priestly writings from the time of King Josiah and so shared the belief in the God-led “history” as composed by the priests of Yahweh which starred Abram/Abraham as their God-blessed progenitor. According to priestly accounts, God had no interest in regard to the rest of the world.

The priest written “holy” history asserted that from the time of Abram/Abraham a whole string of alleged Israelite ancestors could be claimed by them, all of whom had allegedly spoken directly with God. The history, as presented in Exodus, for example, asserted that God had promised that his “chosen ones” would inherit the land of Canaan–which, inexplicably, was not virgin territory but just happened to have been long inhabited by other people! It was this invented priestly “history” which provided the elements for a shared identity among the Jewish tribespeople in a psychological manner that the mythologies of other cultures could not. Thus conditioned for generations, the Jews shared priest-written law codes attributed to Moses–a whole battery of 613 laws–which, strangely had not been found until the time of young King Josiah (see related post, A Priest’s Convenient Discovery, December 2011). The unity of the Judean people was anchored upon the priest-written holy account and their allusion of their faith’s historic past.

The book of Leviticus was supposedly a testament regarding the Levite people, but that book-heading seemed intentionally deceiving to Hecataeus, for the primary focus remained on claims of priestly authority and offered precious little concerning any actual Levite persons. Foreigners puzzled, therefore, over why Leviticus seemed to have been unceremoniously jammed into the migration narrative between the books of Exodus and Numbers, which interrupted the intriguing story flow with the insertions of ceremonial laws! To foreign investigators such as Hectaeus, it seemed that to be properly explained the priestly code really extended from Genesis through the book of Joshua, which made for a literary whole. Why, then, was Joshua omitted and only the five books, with Leviticus jammed in, promoted as being most holy? Only these five books had been canonized c. 400 BCE (Pentateuch).

Unquestionably, the priests of Yahweh were accomplished story tellers who liberally borrowed inspiration from prehistory astronomy-cosmological lessons which had once taught of Creations’ energies. Those interacting creative energies from the ancient lessons were then personified by the authors as Israelites and presented as having been living historic ancestors. Mesopotamian and Persian religious epics, for example, had offered the same ancient astronomy secrets also, but those creative principles given with those lessons were not presented in a manner which seemed to be directly linked to a certain people’s special history. Neither did the epic sagas of other cultures particularly inspire any principles of moral responsibility or ethics. And the Greek myths of deities and their epics of gods and heroes, as another example, were presented in metaphorical style, which were simply meant to inspire people with a personal sense of purpose, perseverance and strength through larger-than-life examples.

By the second century BCE there had evolved a questioning spirit among the Judean people themselves, which resulted from their association with Syrian and Greek cultures after Syria was conquered by Antiochus III, the Great. Antiochus reigned from 223 to 187 BCE, and he had obtained possession of all of Palestine and Coeli-Syria by 198 BCE. But the excesses of Antiochus’ son, Antiochus IV, eventually triggered what is known as the Maccabean revolt (166 BCE). Antiochus IV had captured Jerusalem and prohibited Judaism; he sought instead to establish the worship of Greek gods. Events would eventually bring Syria (and the Jews) under Roman control (64 BCE). The world was, in this timeframe, at the entrance into the Age of Pisces (c. 60 BCE), which would bring with it the construction of two faith systems that, in their turn, would reinterpret the Jewish formula of faith for their own purpose.

Pre-Christian Jesus Cult

Posted in Atheist, belief, faith, Hebrew scripture, history, random, religion, scriptures with tags , , , , , , on September 1, 2013 by chouck017894

Belief in a soon-to-come messiah was deep-seated among the Jews after the time of the Maccabean revolt (144 BCE), and the fervor of that belief virtually elevated that expected savior into a secondary god. The book of 1 Enoch,* for example, reveals that entrenched veneration saying, “Before the sun and the signs (constellations) were created, before the stars of heaven were made, his name was called before the Lord of Spirits.”** In this glorification of the expected messiah there is found the influence of Babylonian myth. And in this veneration there is also found the seed from which Christianity would evolve. (*If you are unfamiliar with the book 1 Enoch it is because it was one of many quasi-religious Jewish writings that was not included as part of the Old Testament because it did not contribute to the idea of church authority. Consider the reference to astronomy/zodiacal influence. **It is from this passage in 1 Enoch also which inspired the claim that Jesus of the New Testament Gospels is the “Word” in the fourth Gospel According to John.)

The Jews yearned-for messiah was fashioned upon the legendary Israelite deliverer Joshua (Jeschu, from which the name Jesus was derived), and Jewish literature such as Proverbs, Ecclesiastics and Enoch reflect a background of centuries of polytheistic ideas among the Hebrews. Hellenism became an influencing factor upon tribal Jewish faith, causing mounting dissatisfaction with Judaism among the Jews of the Dispersion (Diaspora) before the destruction of the temple in the sixth century BCE. Ceremonial “law” and endless taboos, sacrifices and superstitions provided individuals little inspiration to act virtuously. Almost in defiance of these prohibitive characteristics there developed an association of Joshua with the Greek Logos, and that association as son or god or messiah is present in the Pentateuch. Thus the name Jesus, derived from Jeschu/Joshua, became revered among some factions of Judaism long before Christianity developed in the Roman Empire. This claim is strengthened in the fact that about a century before the death of Herod (4 BCE, there is recorded the stoning and the hanging upon a tree of a man named Jesus. The name given for this ritually executed man was Jesus ben Pandira, and it occurred in the reign of the Hasmonean king Alexander Jannaeus.

There are ancient documents which show that the early Jewish cult of Jesus, in rivalry with Judaism, was attracting converts among the Jews of the Dispersion. In the oldest document of this cult the central feature was the Eucharist–the sacrament in which bread and wine (or water) are consecrated, then consumed in memory of the revered deity (a deity who was customarily sacrificed). This rite was common in many faith practices of the region in this timeframe, but was practiced in secret among the Jews who were becoming discontented with the futility of tribal ceremonial law. The point is that this places familiarity with the name Jesus as messiah nearly a century before the Roman authors of Mark and Matthew introduced the character of Jesus to the Roman public. On the whole, therefore, those texts were written and designed originally to attract those discontented Jews who wanted a more moralizing and unifying form of faith. To satisfy the messianic yearnings of the discontented the character of quasi-rebel Jesus was declared in the evolving Gospels to have descended through the royal line of David. Elsewhere in Gospel, however, an insertion has Jesus repudiating that assertion, but both versions remain in Gospel and continue to contribute to confusion.

The original character of Jeschu/Joshua in Hebrew scripture had several attributes which were always associated with Pagan sun gods–the alleged power of halting the course of the sun, for example. But in the Yahweh priests’ version the starring character was reduced to human status who happened to have god-blessed powers. This sun god relationship became echoed in Christian scriptures with Joshua’s namesake, Jesus, allegedly declaring of himself, “I am the light of the world” (John 8:23). It is thus from this sun god association that most Christian sects proclaim their faith on Sunday, the day of the sun. (The day for holy observance among the Jews is Saturday, the day of Saturn.)

In the year 60 BCE Jerusalem was captured by Rome; in 06 of present calendar notation (CE) Judea was annexed by Rome; by 55 CE the proportion of Jews in the Roman Empire was over twenty percent. In 66 CE the constant antagonism of the Jews flamed into a rebellion under the leadership of the zealot named Menahem. Briefly put, there was continuous hostility from the Jewish portion of the Empire.

The Jewish Jesus cult had not gone unobserved by the Roman aristocrats and literati. By the time that Emperor Augustus died in 39 BCE the Roman populace had become fascinated by the exotic character of cults and rituals such as Mithras (Persian), Isis (Egyptian), and Cybele (Phrygian). Their acceptance within Rome made for easier transitions with these conquered regions. When Octavian became sole master of the Roman world in 29 BCE, his empire spread from Africa, Asia, Gaul, Spain and Dalmatia, so preserving order within the Empire was vital for its continuance. But the Empire still continued to be constantly troubled with Jewish haughtiness. Thus around 50-55 CE, as the more hard-line Jews kept being fanned into periodic insurrections, a few Roman aristocrats began to toy with the idea that it could be politically advantageous to nurture that digression regarding Jesus within Jewish culture. So is it simply coincidence that it was in this general timeframe that the first version of Mark and then Matthew happened to make their appearance in the Roman Empire?

And isn’t it strange that later New Testament books appeared either during or shortly after other periods of conflict with the Jews? There was war in Judea in 69 CE, and Jerusalem fell in 70 The revisions of Mark and Matthew occurred between 70 and 80, or during the troubles that led to the destruction of the last three outposts of the Jewish resistance at Machaerus, Herodian, and Masada. After another long siege in 79 Jerusalem was captured. The book of Acts of the Apostles dates from c. 84-90 CE.

Continuing acts of civil disobedience throughout Jewish centers of the Empire necessitated constant monitoring, and in this general timeframe, 94-100 CE, the books of 1 Corinthians, Galatians and Ephesians were composed. Also in this timeframe the Pharisees declared that Italy, and especially Rome was “unclean.” The composition of the book of Romans just happened to occur c. 100; then 2 Corinthians, the re-editing of Ephesians came about c. 103-105: the books Timothy and Titus c. 103-105: Colossians, and 2 Timothy, 105-107. The second great revolt by the Jews began c. 115, and one million Jews took over Alexandria, Egypt and held it for nearly a year. By 116 there were also Jewish uprisings in Parthia and other places. Coincidently, the books 2 Peter, John and Jude all date c. 110-115.

Another great Jewish revolt began in 131 CE under the leadership of Bar Cocheba, and Roman troops were sent then to restore order but suffered a surprising defeat. Roman patience was running thin. The violence of the rebellion in Jerusalem lasted for four years and was climaxed by Emperor Hadrian having Jerusalem destroyed and forbidding any Jew, God’s alleged “chosen people,” from setting foot on the site. It is not exactly coincidence that the book of Revelation was written c. 135-138. But the book of Hebrews was actually the last NT book to be written, c. 135-140. In that book, 8:6-13, there is professed a new “covenant” for the Jewish people. Even at that late date the Roman rule was not out to destroy Jewish culture; Rome sought only to soften the Jewish obsessive pretense of godly favoritism.

The world would not again see a nation called Israel until 1948–one thousand eight hundred and seventy-eight years later. In that time and up to the present not much in the way of “faith” has evolved, unfortunately.

An Ungodly Fixation, Fundamentalism

Posted in Atheist, belief, Christianity, faith, history, humanity, religion, scriptures, Social, thoughts with tags , , , , on August 21, 2013 by chouck017894

Back in the Middle Ages the Crusades became the big religious pastime in European circles. Christians were called by Catholic fundamentalists to mount an offensive against the “evil Moors,” and the unquestioning believers dutifully sallied forth to slay hundreds of thousands of “heretics” for the glory of the “Prince of Peace.” The bulk of the victims across Europe over the centuries of the Inquisition were not Moors, but simply people who sought spiritual alliance with the Source in their own way. Later, in the 1800s the popular sport of the British Protestant fundamentalists was to indulge in terrorism against the Irish Catholics in Northern Ireland. More recently, when Iran was taken over by Muslim fundamentalists in the Islamic Revolution of 1979, thousands of “non-believers” were heartlessly slaughtered. In India on October 31, 1984, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, a Hindu of the Adi Dharma Brahmic religion, was shot to death by a Sikh fundamentalist. The Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin was shot to death in 1995 by a Jewish fundamentalist. And in our present day epidemic of fundamentalist mental affliction, one brand of Muslim fundamentalists continue to indulge themselves in the hit-or-miss slaughtering anywhere of anyone whom they judge to be infidels.

In the United States today the fever of Christian fundamentalists has managed (since 1996) to infect and pervert the workings of true democracy. As usual with any fundamentalist, the delusions of righteousness and holy exclusiveness from which they suffer is detectable by their addiction to unclean hatreds. In the affliction of fundamentalism it is not really their specific narrow faith that is at fault: it is the delusion that they and they alone know what is true and right in the sight of God. In their spiritual fever they fail to recognize that the “truths” they credit to God are actually nothing other than their own ego judgments fashioned by man’s fear of the unknown. Ego does not like any contrariness, and once ego fashions an emotional fortress (faith) it will rarely respond to rational examination.

Karl Marx made the insightful observation that religion is the opium of the masses. As with drug addiction, the quest of the religious fundies is the pursuit of the feel-good high they get from their indulgence. And they will defend without scruples their indulgence of “faith” against any rational examination. The lust for God’s imagined favoritism commonly drives them into unholy behavior such as name-calling, half-truths, outright lies, and even killing anyone considered to be a threat to their imagined superior spiritual status. So contaminated are they that they cannot see their spiritual insincerity when they judge other people to be “lost,” or a “devil’s advocate,” or “demon possessed” as they themselves go about disrupting every facet of social structure for the majority. They never explain why God, if “he” is omniscient,” has to rely on their pathetically limited abilities to clean up the spiritual confusion in regard to himself.

Fundamentalist Christians hold that the Bible is man’s sole authority. This is stridently avowed despite the many contradictions that the “holy texts” hold. There is a fact that would be amusing if it were not so tragic, but the average fundamentalists have not and do not actually read the Bible themselves—it is so much easier to listen to some overzealous interpreter who cherry picks verses from the “good book” to inflame others with their slanted concepts. The common response to weaving some out-of-context verses into emotional rhetoric is to focus on some imagined revulsion that God supposedly finds within his creation of variety and diversity of life. Hatred for the superficial differences which make up life expressions is very easy to arouse, and accusations that others indulge in sin are so easy to assert—especially if any of those “sins” happen not to be one of the favorites of the fundamentalists.

Such pretense of possessing the only upright “faith” may give each other within their little faith system clique a sense of exclusivity, but it does not fool the ultimate power which creates in endless variety and diversity. And that fundamentalist attitude that everyone else is wrong certainly was not a message in the alleged teachings of Jesus. Indeed, Jesus was depicted as actually standing up to the Jewish fundamentalists of his day; he was radical in that he praised compassion, forgiveness, and being non-judgmental. In the book of Matthew 23:27 Jesus is even depicted as having commented on the shallow spirituality of fundamentalists. It might be wise, therefore, if the fundamentalists of today would get down off their self-constructed pedestals and actually read the book they claim to live by. Concerning the fundamentalists, Jesus is quoted as referring to them as “…whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness.”

Yikes! Does that Gospel truth mean that all fundamentalists are actually—zombies?