Illumination

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Good evening:

My thoughts turn today to the meaning of Jesus and I want to share my view. I hope you will share yours in the comments below. I hope to begin a thoughtful ecumenical Christmas Eve discussion in which we all share our ideas, regardless of religious belief, doubt or non belief.

All are welcome in the house tonight.

Faith matters not to me. I do not know or care whether he existed in physical form or is just a story someone dreamed up. I don’t believe in magical virgin births or raising the dead and I could care less if he walked on water. I also reject the idea that someone 2,000 years ago died for my sins. I regard the story of the resurrection to be symbolic rather than literal.

I aspire to think and act as he would think and act. In the words of Rabbi Hillel, “That which is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow. That is the whole Torah; the rest is the explanation; go and learn.”

The positive form of the idea is expressed in Matthew 7:12 NCV, “Do to others what you want them to do to you. This is the meaning of the law of Moses and the teaching of the prophets.”

It’s all about the works, not the faith.

I chose long ago to represent the poor, the marginalized and the mentally ill. To give voice to those who had no voice. To save the lives of those whom the government would kill. And I found that every person, no matter what horrors they had visited upon others, possessed a core of decency and grace.

I didn’t do it to earn salvation and eternal life in some heaven somewhere and I didn’t do it to avoid eternal fire.

I chose to live this way, regardless of the consequences, because it is the right way to live. If we all lived this way, we would realize the fabled Garden of Eden. It’s there in your heart.

Although I stumble a lot, I pick myself up, return my eye to that distant star and take another step.

No matter what happens, there is no other path for me to follow.

Love is the most powerful transforming force in the universe. It is here in this house. Feel it. Believe it and live it.

Namaste and Happy Holidays

Fred

25 Responses to Illumination

  1. girlp says:

    I agree with everything you said 🙂

  2. Two sides to a story says:

    The true nature of mind is wisdom and compassion and that’s all it takes to be a good human.

  3. MichelleO says:

    Happy Holidays, everyone!

    I imagine that the times for humans in those days were so violent and wretched, that small pockets of communities popped up to honor a more peaceful and committed way of living and doing daily business with one another. And so, these loving and peaceful communities all around the world created “religion” or “faith.”

    It was a better way of living among one another and of building trust. I can’t imagine living in such a time where war and cut-throat brutality amongst one’s own neighbors, was a regular way of living. People simply got fed up with conquerors and destroyers.

    However, like today, the 1% likes the power of war and filling up their coffers with riches of those wars. My belief, is that many of ancient “teapublicans” (who were far more educated than the “slaving masses) rewrote many of the “stories” in the Torah and Bible, so that masses would not see themselves as the free entities that Jesus was preaching was their birthright.

    The ancient republicans also did not like the idea of people being unsuspicious of one another, and living in a peace-like manner; trusting themselves instead of their “betters,” the powerfull 1%.

    So, yes. I believe in the Historical Jesus. I believe in His Words and His times. I believe that these ancient peoples found a “better” way, but that the ancient church powers and ancient State, who were better educated, had to find a way to interfere in this “self-love” movement; which they did, by tampering with both sacred books.

    • However, like today, the 1% likes the power of war and filling up their coffers with riches of those wars. My belief, is that many of ancient “teapublicans” (who were far more educated than the “slaving masses) rewrote many of the “stories” in the Torah and Bible, so that masses would not see themselves as the free entities that Jesus was preaching was their birthright.

      Down through the ages, organized religion has been the confidence scheme of choice.

  4. bronxlady1 says:

    Thank you Frederick. May you and your loved ones have a wonderful Holiday this season.

  5. bronxlady1 says:

    Let me start by saying Happy Holidays to all! So, I am “one of those” that believes. I didn’t always feel this way, but life and near death experiences changed that. I believe in a man who was sent to live as a human among the people. Who came with a message of love and died because he loved us that much, like many have after Him. A man misunderstood feared and even hated although He never hurt anyone, and as bad as He was treated forgave those who hurt Him. A man with a heart bigger than anything. I love Him dearly at the risk of being ridiculed and called names which I have been. Why? It is just something i feel in my heart.

    Happy, healthy and safe holidays and a healthy, safe, and prosperous New Year to everybody!

    • That is a beautiful description of Jesus, the gentle and peaceful warrior. The man who showed us the power of love.

      Merry Christmas!

      I believe he existed and I try to be like him manifesting his teachings.

      I know I fail a lot, but I pick myself up and keep on trying.

      It’s tough to be like him. I believe he was the most courageous man who ever lived.

  6. Malisha says:

    Although I’m (culturally, though not religiously) Jewish I have actually read and thought quite a bit about the apparent historical figure called Jesus Christ (by the Christians and most others). One of the most enlightening conversations I have had about him was with an attorney who was born in Central America and explained that some forms of Christianity there are “liberation theology” versions of the supposed histories given. Clearly, the Romans who were in (always fragile) control of the area were not eager to see a religion (Judaism) that had as its organizing feature (and dominant holiday) a slave rebellion take hold of the rest of their empire, so they were especially concerned about the possibility that some upstart “king of the Jews” would challenge them or even just make it clear to the people that the Roman way was not ultimately the permanent timeless irrevocable power — or to put it IOW, “the kingdom, the power and the glory forever.”

    That’s how I see him. He was among the greatest scholars of his time, but not properly recognized among “his own class,” possibly because of the questions about his birth and possibly because of John-the-Baptist’s “otherness” that rubbed off on Jesus.

    I kind of reject that blond, mild, Anglicized image of him but it does make for pretty paintings. ALL infants are “tender and mild” until they let loose with that cry in the middle of the night that shakes their mother’s bones!

    • Jesus was a revolutionary and visionary rabbi who believed he was living in apocalyptic times. He was not trying to start a new religion and if he were alive today, many fundie Christians would be the first to demand he be crucified.

      Regardless whether he existed, I believe in liberation theology.

    • MichelleO says:

      I admire you, because you are such a wonderful writer, Malisha. Time and children caught up with me, and I am no longer the creative and descriptive writer that you are.

    • Two sides to a story says:

      I believe Jesus was a great teacher whose message was similar to Buddha’s, though wrapped in terms familiar to Jews and surrounding cultures of the time, and now somewhat bent out of shape from centuries of Christian splintering.

  7. a2nite says:

    I hope everyone has a happy holiday!

  8. sonniq says:

    There is much I want to comment about on this post but I just look at the time and it is almost 3 AM . I think Santa Claus is supposed to be in my neighborhood real soon, so I’ve been told, so I took my valium so I could go to sleep, so I can get up early in the morning and start Christmas dinner. But I will be back!! Merry Christmas!

  9. lady2soothe says:

    Welcome back and Happy Holidays!

    Xena told me you were back up and running and a poster wanted to give some information but couldn’t remember the website.

    http://whatzenalotionbar.wordpress.com/2014/12/24/1001-police-killings/

    http://whatzenalotionbar.wordpress.com/2014/12/24/500-unarmed-victim-archive-of-law-enforcement-murders/

  10. MedicineBear says:

    What you said . . . amen to that, Brother! Amen and Aho!

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