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    orthodoxymoron

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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Wed Nov 03, 2010 12:26 am

    Good question, Anchor. Jesus didn't tell people to build churches - and to worship and praise him - did he? The Teachings of Jesus are really the end of the church - if followed without twisting or turning them into meaninglessness. But the churches are already built - and people seem to require some sort of gathering devoted to things eternal. I don't go to church - yet I think about things eternal - endlessly. The human sacrifice aspect of Christianity really troubles me. I doubt the necessity of the substitutionary atonement. I agree with Bernard Shaw - that it is unethical. Plus - it makes God appear to be a monster. The actual Teachings of Jesus are quite different. But who knows their real source - or how many times they have been redacted?

    Jesus taught mostly in nature. The most inspirational environment is nature! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rw5TtwJFIKU&feature=related I believe that the Holy Spirit can best get through to us when we contemplate eternal things in nature. The best place to have church is not in church! The best church is no church! And didn’t Jesus tell us, in essence, not to go to church, in Matthew 6:5,6? He told us to pray privately, didn’t He?

    Having said that, I am torn! I love architecturally and acoustically inspiring churches! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=si1CfnoRyNw&feature=related Especially while experiencing sacred music in these vast spaces! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RwRUxB8KGiw (Notice the title - "Lucis Creator"!!!!) Think long and hard about that last one - especially in light of my other threads on MOA. Veni Creator Spiritus? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tOnr5uhoPlE Lucis Trust? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g7QQ3QEHU0k The trompettes at St. John's - are Divine!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pemt2XGJYAk&feature=related Singing the great hymns of the church with congregation, choir, organ and orchestra…as the sunlight streams through the stained glass windows is truly a mountain top experience! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JUxBzAfmLiM&feature=related Notice the Babylonian God Dagon Fish-Head Headgear! I believe that artistic expression and creativity are hugely important parts of life and Christianity! They lift us up! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dcINl0zJ_YU&feature=related Speaking of being lifted up! What an absolutely stunning beauty!!! Can anyone find fault with that last video??? I can't! What about this one?? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K0DmtmmFEVo&NR=1&feature=fvwp OMG!!!!!

    However, I am often troubled by the price and the pride! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2YstlGy1Ld0 Is Jesus impressed? I sometimes imagine the stained glass Jesus with tears streaming down His face because of being ignored, despised and rejected by His professed followers! Would those in Darfur be impressed? Should we build more orphanages than churches? I once stood at the altar of a magnificent Gothic cathedral, reading the story of the rich young ruler from a large leather-bound Bible on a golden pedestal. For a moment, I thought the Word of God clashed with the House of God! Are churches sometimes places where there is a form of godliness without the power? Where people stand, sit, bend, nod, and are politely kind to God? Also, the message and music are often determined by those with the dough…not by those in the know!

    Obviously, when it's cold, dark and rainy, it's nearly impossible to have a religious service outside! I guess we need church buildings, but we don't need jeweled, gold plated shrines, bedeviled with hideous gargoyles! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fm4knZ1Bm3s We need the grand and glorious, but with sound and simple construction, so as not to become slaves to buildings and bills. Think minimalist cathedral! Was that an oxymoron? Perhaps…but sometimes I'm an oxymoron! And don't forget the soup kitchen! And please…pretty please…don’t forget to pray!

    Also, church is not for everyone! The church is not the very gate of Heaven! The Christian Church is not Salvation4Sale! At least it shouldn't be! Church may, or may not, be necessary for balanced psychology, ethics, and spirituality. Sometimes church can even make things worse! On the other hand, those who have left the church have often jumped out of the frying pan and into the fire…and had their fingers burnt right up to their arm pits!

    Finally, remember what Jesus said to the disciples when they were admiring a church building...


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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Wed Nov 03, 2010 5:55 pm

    Believe it, or not, I am presently watching 'The Passion of the Christ' for the first time - and the violence is sickening. I realize that this is the historical reality - but I find it especially sickening to watch Jesus be repeatedly misused, abused, and bloodied. Has there ever been a Hollywood movie which focused exclusively on what Jesus taught? I once spoke with Steven Spielberg's stepmother about my interest in seeing 'someone' do a proper Life of Christ movie - with all of the latest special effects - which was completely honest and accurate. I pointed her toward a Life of Christ book titled 'The Desire of Ages' by Ellen White. She was very interested in Jesus and Christianity, and was attending a Christian class, which I also attended. Obviously, nothing ever came of this. I also spoke with Walter Matthau's son (at a Whole Life Expo) about the same subject - but he was non-responsive. This all happened long before 'The Passion of the Christ' was a twinkle in the eye of Mel Gibson. I would still like this to become a reality. Anyone out there who can make this happen? Obviously - at this point - such a production should touch upon the subject of ET's. I would love to know what the Vatican REALLY knows about all of this - but it could be very disillusioning. Whatever the case - the Teachings of Jesus continue to provide inspiration and enlightenment to literally billions of people - including me. I wonder where one might end up if they read the Four Gospels, the Federalist Papers, and the Anti-Federalist Papers - over and over again - while listening to Latin Masses and Classical Sacred Music? I'm working toward this - but I'm not quite there. Might this open one's eyes and ears? Might they become an orthodoxymoron? Let's see - if I can get 100 monkeys to do this....

    I'm beginning to think that I'm in trouble with BOTH the God of This World AND the Creator God of the Universe. Sort of like when a police officer tries to break up a domestic dispute - and gets pounded by both parties - even though he or she is trying to help both parties. I have a very bad and sick feeling regarding what might be going on in the entire universe. I so hope that I'm wrong...
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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Fri Nov 05, 2010 5:03 am

    I'm considering doing an old-fashioned Bible Study on this thread - focusing upon the Teachings of Jesus. I've been doing a lot of hooting and hollering - ranting and raving - about this and that - but I haven't settled down and done an actual Bible Study. Is this inappropriate for a progressive site such as MOA? Perhaps - but I think I'm going to try it anyway - as an experiment. I think I'm going to begin with the Sermon on the Mount - in Matthew 5-7. I did an interpretive paraphrase many years ago - and I think I'll post it. I won't be able to copy and paste it - so it will take me a while to make this post. I generally like the King James Version - accurate or not - because I like the way it reads - and many think that it is one of the more accurate translations. Anyway - you have your homework kiddies!

    "The disciples' place was always next to Jesus. The people constantly pressed upon Him, yet the disciples understood that they were not to be crowded away from His presence. They sat close beside Him, that they might not lose a word of His instruction. They were attentive listeners, eager to understand the truths they were to make known to all lands and all ages.

    With a feeling that something more than usual might be expected, they now pressed about their Master. They believed that the kingdom was soon to be established, and from the events of the morning they gathered assurance that some announcement concerning it was about to be made. A feeling of expectancy pervaded the multitude also, and eager faces gave evidence of the deep interest. As the people sat upon the green hillside, awaiting the words of the divine Teacher, their hearts were filled with thoughts of future glory. There were scribes and Pharisees who looked forward to the day when they should have dominion over the hated Romans, and possess the riches and splendor of the world's great empire. The poor peasants and fishermen hoped to hear the assurance that their wretched hovels, the scanty food, the life of toil, and fear of want were to be exchanged for mansions of plenty and days of ease. In place of the one coarse garment which was their covering by day, and their blanket at night, they hoped that Christ would give them the rich and costly robes of their conquerors. All hearts thrilled with the proud hope that Israel was soon to be honored before the nations as the chosen of the Lord, and Jerusalem exalted as the head of a universal kingdom.

    Christ disappointed the hope of worldly greatness. In the Sermon on the Mount He sought to undo the work that had been wrought by false education, and to give His hearers a right conception of His kingdom and of His own character. Yet He did not make a direct attack on the errors of the people. He saw the misery of the world on account of sin, yet He did not present before them a vivid delineation of their wretchedness. He taught them of something infinitely better than they had known. Without combating their ideas of the kingdom of God, He told them the conditions of entrance therein, leaving them to draw their own conclusions as to its nature. The truths He taught are no less important to us than to the multitude that followed Him. We no less than they need to learn the foundation principles of the kingdom of God.”---The Desire of Ages by Ellen White, pages 308-309.
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    orthodoxymoron

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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Fri Nov 05, 2010 10:37 am

    Here is another what if. What if it's Gabriel vs Lucifer + Michael - with Gabriel and Lucifer being the big-guns - and Michael being highly pure, but relatively powerless compared with the other two? Might Lucifer and Michael be co-mediators between Gabriel and Humanity? Might Gabriel be God/Satan? Might Lucifer be Mary/Holy Spirit? Might Michael be Jesus? Once again - don't get mad at me - this is just more speculation. My goal is to make you face yourselves - and think. Could Gabriel have been disfunctional in Heaven (Orion?)? Could Lucifer and Michael have rebelled against Gabriel? Did Humanity aka Fallen Angels aka Nephilim aka Us - follow (fall) Lucifer and Michael to Earth? Did we steal Fire (advanced technology, hybridization genetics, and spiritual wisdom) from Gabriel? Was this the Original Sin? Are Lucifer and Michael at odds regarding how to deal with Gabriel? Is Gabriel the leader of the Incoming Annunaki? Is Lucifer the leader of the Local Annunaki? Is Michael the leader of Humanity (as we know humans to be)? I keep feeling incredible tension and looming fate - as I contemplate our situation. Earth really does seem to be a Planet in Rebellion - and it feels as though the rebellion is about to be put down - once and for all. But what if ALL parties are wrong? What if an innovative solution needs to be pursued? I keep mentioning a Namaste Constitutional Responsible Freedom Solar System aka The United States of the Solar System. I like the concept - but I am clueless regarding the details and implementation aspects. I'll just keep passively pursuing this line of reasoning - and hope that the Big Gun Gods and Goddesses call off Armageddon, Retribution, Annihilation, Damnation, Utter Destruction, etc. - and declare some sort of a conditional truce - to work things out in a reasonable, rational, and peaceful manner. Hope springs eternal - but don't hold your breath - hoping for hell to freeze over...


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    Carol
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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  Carol on Fri Nov 05, 2010 11:06 am

    Back to Anchor's question, "Why have a church at all?"

    It's all about community and sharing a sacred moment together. Oftentimes the spiritual energy of the many is far more potent then the spiritual energy of the one. And for me personally... it was the singing. The intonations gave me chicken skin.


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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Fri Nov 05, 2010 11:50 am

    Carol wrote:Back to Anchor's question, "Why have a church at all?"

    It's all about community and sharing a sacred moment together. Oftentimes the spiritual energy of the many is far more potent then the spiritual energy of the one. And for me personally... it was the singing. The intonations gave me chicken skin.

    Thank-you Carol. You make a very good point. I sometimes wonder if a service should consist of nothing but singing. You know - have the prelude and processional - and then just sing hymn after hymn - with appropriate words - and then have the recessional and postlude. I used to love to do hymn improvisations on the pipe-organ in an empty church. It was so much more fun than an actual service. I love that sort of thing! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0rig6b-jogg&feature=related A big problem is how much money it takes to run even a small church. The costs are staggering. Red Prada shoes are expensive! Then add egos, politics, skepticsim, doubt, theological controversy, stupid rules - and it takes all the fun out of it. A church intended to get the faithful into heaven - can become a hell on earth. I love the theory of church - but I dislike the reality - which is why I am looking for other options. "To live in Heaven with the saints! Oh! That will be glory! To live on Earth among the saints! Well that's another story!"


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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  Carol on Fri Nov 05, 2010 11:55 am

    Indeed it was participating in the choir that got me back to church and then a very mean-spirited choir director caught up in the politics that I left again.


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    What is life?
    It is the flash of a firefly in the night, the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset.

    With deepest respect ~ Aloha & Mahalo, Carol
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    orthodoxymoron

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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Fri Nov 05, 2010 12:00 pm

    Carol wrote:Indeed it was participating in the choir that got me back to church and then a very mean-spirited choir director caught up in the politics that I left again.

    Directors can be very strange and moody people! I've had my own bad experiences with them. Some say that Lucifer was the Minister of Music in Heaven. I tend to agree. The nicest organist/choirmaster I ever had was one of the very best in the world. Choir was genuinely fun.

    Tangentially - I'm liking combining theology, art, music, esoteric research, and science fiction. But it really is taking a lot out of me. I feel like I'm fighting all the time - and losing - but I am having fun on the way down....


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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  Carol on Fri Nov 05, 2010 12:47 pm

    Perhaps on the way down in terms of exploring your own psyche and upwards in terms of your spiritual evolution.


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    What is life?
    It is the flash of a firefly in the night, the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset.

    With deepest respect ~ Aloha & Mahalo, Carol
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    orthodoxymoron

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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:02 pm

    Carol wrote:Perhaps on the way down in terms of exploring your own psyche and upwards in terms of your spiritual evolution.

    I think I'm on the right track (in general terms) - but that there are unseen forces who wish to derail those who threaten them. There is a power structure which is currently in place which is highly problematic (for both understandable and unfathomable reasons) - and which wishes to maintain the status quo. I think people who are a threat get targeted. I just want to help build a solid foundation for future generations - even if it drives me completely insane. I state this as a warning. This is not a rehearsal. This is a live-ammo spiritual war - and there will be casualties.
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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  Carol on Fri Nov 05, 2010 9:30 pm

    OXY, you were right all along. I suspect I'll be staying here on the planet with you.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N00OfL8JnVI&feature=related

    WAKE UP CALL...


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    What is life?
    It is the flash of a firefly in the night, the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset.

    With deepest respect ~ Aloha & Mahalo, Carol
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    orthodoxymoron

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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Sat Nov 06, 2010 10:39 pm

    Carol wrote:OXY, you were right all along. I suspect I'll be staying here on the planet with you.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N00OfL8JnVI&feature=related

    WAKE UP CALL...

    Thank-you Carol. Chris Thomas is quite interesting - and I agree with a lot of what he said in the several YouTube videos I watched - but I never really know what to believe and what not to believe. I recently labled myself as a 'New Age Agnostic'. I really do think that we need to fix ourselves and this solar system before we get involved in the really neat stuff. We need to take this thing step by step. I don't doubt that we will eventually travel to the stars - but the disinformation, deception, corruption, etc. needs to be properly understood, exposed, and dealt with. This could involve a huge amount of disillusionment, pain, time, and even luck.

    I wonder where one might end up if they read the Four Gospels, the Federalist Papers, and the Anti-Federalist Papers - over and over again - while listening to Latin Masses and Classical Sacred Music? I'm working toward this - but I'm not quite there. Might this open one's eyes and ears? Might they become an orthodoxymoron? Let's see - if I can get 100 monkeys to do this....
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    orthodoxymoron

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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Fri Nov 12, 2010 2:15 pm

    The following is from http://www.chopra.com/thirdjesus

    Who is Jesus Christ? In The Third Jesus, bestselling author and spiritual leader Deepak Chopra http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deepak_Chopra provides an answer to this question that is both a challenge to current systems of belief and a fresh perspective on what Jesus can teach us all, regardless of our religious background. There is not one Jesus, Chopra writes, but three.

    First, there is the historical Jesus, the man who lived more than two thousand years ago and whose teachings are the foundation of Christian theology and thought. Next there is Jesus the Son of God, who has come to embody an institutional religion with specific dogma, a priesthood, and devout believers. And finally, there is the third Jesus, the cosmic Christ, the spiritual guide whose teaching embraces all humanity, not just the church built in his name. He speaks to the individual who wants to find God as a personal experience, to attain what some might call grace, or God-consciousness, or enlightenment.

    When we take Jesus literally, we are faced with the impossible. How can we truly “love thy neighbor as thyself”? But when we see the exhortations of Jesus as invitations to join him on a higher spiritual plane, his words suddenly make sense.

    Ultimately, Chopra argues, Christianity needs to overcome its tendency to be exclusionary and refocus on being a religion of personal insight and spiritual growth. In this way Jesus can be seen for the universal teacher he truly is–someone whose teachings of compassion, tolerance, and understanding can embrace and be embraced by all of us.

    The following is by David W. Virtue www.virtueonline.org 7/18/2006

    Definition: Chakra - One who is committed to open-minded, inclusive and compassionate Krishna Conscious News.

    Who owns Christianity cried the former leader of the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's Transcendental Meditation and New Age guru of Ayurvedic medicine programs?

    Writing in the San Francisco Chronicle last week Mr. Deepak Chopra who claims that perfect health is a matter of choice and that he can identify your dosha and its state of balance or imbalance simply by taking your pulse, and says "quantum healing" can overcome aging, railed against orthodox believers in The Episcopal Church, calling them "reactionaries" and "fundamentalists".

    He writes: "Not many people of moderate persuasion have much sway in the church any more. I was reminded why recently when the Episcopal Church did two important things: It elected a woman bishop to head the denomination, and it backtracked on appointing gay bishops. The first move seems Christian. Women deserve to hold church office as much as political office (one diocese, however, was so incensed that it voted to leave the church, and worldwide there are still Anglican movements that do not permit women to be bishops or ordained priests)."

    VOL: He is partly right. "Moderate" Episcopalians have been lead down the garden path for over 30 years by a handful of pansexualists who have brokered in sodomy in the name of "inclusivity" and "diversity" and they are happy to see their denomination destroyed, in order to maintain the phallacy that their behavior is good and right in the eyes of God, when clearly it isn't, and none of the major world religions agree with ECUSA's handful of pansexualists. Such behavior has been repudiated by the Roman Catholic Church, the great Orthodox Churches, and, among evangelicals, The Southern Baptist Convention, America's largest Protestant denomination.

    CHOPRA: The second move was an act of cowardice because it did not reflect the ideals of love in Christianity and was motivated by reactionaries in the Episcopal denomination. Countering a long tradition of laissez-faire tolerance, the reactionaries have gotten tough and threatened to form their own church if gays are promoted in the priesthood. The worldwide Anglicans are more intolerant, upholding that homosexuality is forbidden, unnatural, and wrong or an outright sin, depending on who is doing the disapproving.

    VOL: So love is never having to say you're sorry or wrong, and we should endorse buggery because Chopra says so. No sane parent believes that, and that is why many are fleeing The Episcopal Church in droves with their children in hand. It might also be why 10 million American parents home school because they believe the secular school system is endorsing sexual behaviors antithetical to their beliefs. Go figure.

    We should never be tolerant of behaviors that can potentially kill and have proven lethal in millions of cases. Furthermore the Episcopal Church and the worldwide Anglican Communion has never been "tolerant" of sexual sin. They believe it should be confessed and repented of, not endorsed. The "tolerance" of homosexual fornication is a relatively recent phenomenon, and it is the death knell of The Episcopal Church. Anglican churches in the Global South are growing by the millions because they believe in a God who demands repentance, faith and obedience to a revealed faith, history and tradition.

    CHOPRA: You'd think that someone would stand up and ask a simple question: Who are we to condemn gays if Christ didn't? In fact, who are we to condemn any sinner, since Christ didn't? Christianity is about forgiveness, and for the past two decades, as fundamentalism swept through every Protestant denomination, moderates and liberals have been driven out, and were roundly condemned as they left. Along with them went tolerance and forgiveness, not to mention love.

    VOL: Christ upheld marriage between a man and a woman as the ONLY ideal for human beings to function sexually. He never specifically mentions homosexuality because it was not on the radar screen of First Century Jews who knew the law and its condemnation of sodomy. Why state the obvious. Mr. Chopra talks about forgiveness. But who is forgiving whom? The Episcopal Church's gays and lesbians don’t want forgiveness they want ACCEPTANCE of their behavior. What is he talking about? And who is he calling "fundamentalists" - people who don't agree with him? That's choice. Slander by name calling. Why didn’t he add homophobes and all the other epithets gays love to roll out whenever anybody dares to stand up and oppose their behavior?

    CHOPRA: Did Christ teach love or is that just a liberal bias? In the current climate, it's hard to remember, but one thing is certain: Once a tight cabal of fundamentalists takes over any denomination, Christ's teachings go out the window. The reversal of Christianity from a religion of love to a religion of hate is the greatest religious tragedy of our time.

    VOL: Love is the flip side of law Mr. Chopra. And the 10 commandments have never been abrogated, not even by Christ himself, and your undefined use of the word "love" begs the question about what sort of love you are talking about : Agape, eros, philia, etc.
    And for the record, orthodox Episcopalians are not fundamentalists, either cultural or theological. We are Evangelical and Anglo-Catholics, we engage Scripture, reason and tradition with equal intensity, so please don't confuse us with Jerry Falwell; many Episcopalians are former fundamentalists and resist being called by that name.

    CHOPRA: Those of us who haven't been swept up in worldwide fundamentalism, which has corrupted Islam, Hinduism and Judaism as well, have been caught in a double bind. We can't join any sect that preaches intolerance, yet we can't fight it, either, because by definition fighting is a form of intolerance. To escape this double bind, moderates have stayed silent and stayed home. But that tactic failed. As healthy as it is to nourish your own devotion and faith, it's disastrous to allow extremists to take over the church, because the statehouse, the board of education, the Congress, and eventually the presidency are next.

    VOL: Let me talk to you about "extremists who have taken over the church." If you knew a damn thing about the Episcopal Church in the last 40 years who you would know that a small group of homoerotic fools have taken over The Episcopal Church including its seminaries, levers of power and money, twisting the seminaries in knots over sexuality, mandating such things as women's ordination, violating the consciences of thousands of sincere believing priests who believe otherwise. These priests have been ridden rough shod over by a small group of crazy, hysterical, angry lesbian women (including women bishops) who now dominate the church, and are doing their best to kick out faithful believing priests whose parishes make the money they want to spend on their agenda.

    CHOPRA: Perhaps civil society will solve the problem of religious extremism. So far it hasn't. America finds itself in the sad plight of being the world's most prominent secular society hijacked by sectarians. One can only hope that the church comes to its senses and regains its moral center. If that doesn't occur, the core teachings of Christ will be lost, for all intents and purposes, to this generation.

    VOL: America, it is said, is a land of Indians (the most religious country on earth) ruled by a handful of Swedes (the most secular country on earth). America is far from being a "secular country". It is a country dominated mostly by Christians, who are mostly very tolerant of other religions. In case you are not aware of it, your country India, has Hindus and Muslims at each others throats and were forced to separate into two countries (India and Pakistan) because they couldn't get along. America has no such problem. Dozens of religions including a whole host of shamans and New Age gurus levitate around the country selling religion like so much hocus pocus…and they do it protected by the United States Constitution. Why it even allows California Bishop William Swing to push his United Religions Initiative nonsense which is light years from what orthodox Episcopalians believe, and he even gets to keep his job!

    Says Chopra: "I in fact don't believe in the existence of time. That's one thing I have to tell you, and the other is that I don't take myself or what I am doing seriously."

    And neither does VirtueOnline, especially when Mr. Chopra knows nothing about the Episcopal Church and even less about historic Christianity.

    END



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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Sun Nov 14, 2010 5:15 pm

    As I typed the following - I once again saw a small white light pass just in front of my face, or perhaps the lights are always there - and I only am able to see them occasionally. I could only find bits and pieces of my old Jesus manuscript - but here is one sample page:

    The Pharisees saw Jesus with the disciples picking and eating grain as they walked through the fields on Saturday, the Sabbath. They asked, "Why are you breaking the Sabbath?" Jesus said, "Haven't you read that David unlawfully ate the priest's showbread when he was hungry? Haven't you read how the temple priests break the Sabbath, yet are guiltless? One greater than the temple is here, and if you understood that, 'I desire mercy, not sacrifice,' you would not condemn the righteous. The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath! I am Lord also of the Sabbath!"

    On another Saturday-Sabbath, Jesus was speaking in a synagogue, and a man with a crippled hand was there. The Pharisees asked, "Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?" Jesus asked the man to stand, and then asked the Pharisees, "Is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good, or to do evil? To save life, or to destroy it?" But they kept silent. Jesus continued, "Who of you would not help a sheep out of a pit on the Sabbath? A person is worth more than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful on the Sabbath to do good!"

    Then, looking at them with anger, because of their hard hearts, he said to the man, "Hold out your hand." The man did, and was healed, but the Pharisees conspired with the Herodians to kill Jesus. Jesus knew this, and travelled to the sea, where crowds followed, bringing the sick and demon possessed, and he healed them. Jesus had a boat ready, if the crowds became overwhelming.

    Demons spoke through some, shrieking, "You are the Son of God!!" Jesus restored the people, telling them not to spread his fame, fulfilling the words of Isaiah the prophet, "See my chosen Servant, who I love!" With the power of the Spirit, he will bring justice and hope to the nations, yet he will not boast!"

    Then Jesus prayed to God all night on a mountain, and at sunrise, he appointed the twelve disciples (also named apostles), that they might teach, heal, and rebuke demons. Their names are Simon-Peter, and Andrew (brothers), James and John (brothers), Philip, Bartholomew, Thomas, Matthew, James (son of Alphaeus), Thaddaeus, Simon (the Zealot), and Judas Iscariot.

    Then Jesus came down to a level place with some of his disciples, where the sick were waiting, and healed them all. When Jesus saw the multitude, he sat with his disciples on the mountainside, and began teaching, saying,

    "Blessed are you who have been made poor by the rich! The Kingdom of God is your home! Blessed are you who have been made hungry by the fat! You will have plenty! Blessed are you who have been crushed, and cry! You will laugh! Cursed are you who have become rich by making others poor! Your crash will be sickening! Cursed are you who have excess by hoarding necessities! You will have nothing! Cursed are you who laugh gleefully at those who are crying! You will be doing the crying! Cursed are you who tell people what they want to hear! False prophets know that trick too! Blessed are those with a balanced self-estimate. They are members of the Kingdom of Heaven. Blessed are those who mourn the evil on this earth. They will be comforted. Blessed are the gentle. They will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who desire right doing. It will be done. Blessed are those who forgive. They will be forgiven. Blessed are those who love. They will see God. Blessed are the peace promoters. They are God's family. Blessed are those who are persecuted for doing what is right. They are members of the Kingdom of Heaven. Blessed are you when people hate, slander, persecute, excommunicate, and call you a devil because of your Christlike character.

    "Shout and jump for joy, because you have a heavenly reward! These things have always happened to God's true messengers! You preserve people. If not, what good are you? You illuminate the world. If you have pure light, people need to see your goodness, and praise God. I did not come to destroy the law, but to demonstrate it. The law is immortal, and harder to destroy than the universe. Anyone who rebels against the law, and leads others into rebellion will stand with Satan. Anyone who practices and preaches the law will will stand with God. Unless you are more loving than the Pharisees, you will never enter heaven!

    "It has been taught, 'Do not murder,' or the court will pronounce you guilty. But I teach that you are pronounced guilty by your urge to kill. If you tell someone to 'go to hell!' you may end up there. When you worship, first become friends with your enemies, and then continue. Where is your discernment? Settle disputes quickly, before they become wars! It has been taught, 'Do not destroy the dignity of marriage by your immorality. But I teach that you turn a person into a thing with your immoral imagination. Destroy your unloving thoughts, before they destroy you.

    "It has been taught, 'Dispose of your mate by divorce.' But I teach that only immorality justifies divorce. It has been taught, 'Do what you have sworn to do.' But I teach you not to swear at all. Yes should mean 'yes,' and no, 'no.' It has been taught, eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.' But I teach you to not hate or retaliate! Love your enemies, and pray for your persecutors. If you only love those who love you, you do not love. Be loving as God is loving, and you will be perfect as God is perfect, and your reward will be great!

    "Pray and do good quietly. Do not show-off or let your left hand know what your right hand is doing. The hypocrites perform their prayers and 'good works' with self-aggrandizing arrogance for applause! Some are dumb enough to clap, but God is not impressed! God knows motives and needs before you ask, and rewards accordingly."


    Last edited by orthodoxymoron on Mon Nov 22, 2010 3:51 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Mon Nov 22, 2010 3:30 pm

    Does a Red Letter Christian have to attack the Episcopal Church, the Anglican Communion, and the Roman Catholic Church - or can they peacefully coexist under the same ecumenical roof? Here is a thread devoted to Grace Cathedral Episcopal Church in San Francisco, CA. http://www.themistsofavalon.net/universal-lounge-f8/grace-cathedral-t1327.htm Once again - consider studying the Four Gospels, the Federalist Papers, and the Anti-Federalist Papers - while listening to Latin Masses and Classical Sacred Music. Do you see why I call myself orthodoxymoron? I am so conflicted and confused. O wretched man that I am! What would Bishop James Pike say? What would Joseph Fletcher say? What would Bishop John Shelby Spong say? What would Bishop Gene Robinson say? What would Tony Campolo say? What would Pope Benedict say? What would Archbishop Rowan Williams say? What would Lucifer say? What would Mary say? What would Jesus say? Razzmatazz Without End. Amen Ra.
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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Tue Nov 23, 2010 2:55 pm

    Danger! Danger! Will Robinson! Danger! This will be one of the most bizarre posts I have ever made. This is merely a brainstorm. Here goes.

    1. Combine the St. Mary's Cathedral Roman Catholic Church (San Francisco, CA) congregation with the Grace Cathedral Episcopal Church (San Francisco, CA) congregation - at Grace Cathedral. Hold separate Roman Catholic and Episcopal services - as well as joint non-sacrificial, non-penetential Ecumenical Namste Latin Mass services - while maintaining separate administrations and leadership.

    2. Deconsecrate St. Mary's Cathedral - and convert it into the new headquarters for a Namaste Constitutional Responsible Freedom Solar System aka The United States of the Solar System. I believe the seating capacity is around 2,500 - so with 10,000 representatives - one in four would attend meetings - while the others would participate electronically - for logistical and security purposes. The United Nations was born in San Francisco - so why not hatch the new Solar System here as well?!

    3. Finish Grace Cathedral - ceiling, additional parking, etc. Replace the 1974 Cassavant addition to the G. Donald Harrison, Aeolian Skinner pipe-organ with the four manual Reiger pipe-organ (French Romantic tonal design) from Pacific Union College (Angwin, CA) - and move the Cassavant to P.U.C. - giving A.D.R.A. a generous ten million dollar donation - cover all moving and installation costs - and donate two million dollars to a needy-student fund at P.U.C. Don't get mad at me! Remember - this is just a brainstorm.

    There's a lot more to my proposal than one might think. St. Mary's Cathedral is really cool - but it doesn't really look like, or feel like, a church. Grace Cathedral looks and feels like a church - in the Roman Catholic and Anglican tradition. Consolidation of expenses would result in HUGE savings to both congregations. This would also be an experiment in ecumenism. I knew a ship captain, who as a young Roman Catholic student - interviewed Bishop James Pike - at Grace Cathedral. The Namaste Constitutional Responsible Freedom Solar System idea would be an experiment, as well. It would start out without a lot of authority - as sort of a dry-run, to get things up and running - and then when it was properly primed - it would go live. The organ transplant would make so much sense. A Stanford DMA organist gave me the idea. We are both tracker-backers. I think Angela is too! The P.U.C. organ is magnificent - but the building sucks! Plus, the organ sticks out like an erected organ - visually, and with reference to the original mission of the SDA church. There's a time and a place for everything. I worry about corrupt and cruel centralized secular and sacred leadership - but I really do seek the right kind of unity - without peace at any price. I love the artistic aspects of the traditional church - but theologically and politically, I think we need to move on.

    What would Harriet Crocker Alexander say? What would Monseigneur Bowe say? What would Pope John Paul I say? What would Mother Teresa say? What would the Queen of Heaven say? What would Ellen White say? What would SaLuSa say? What would Monka do? What would Jesus do?

    Any questions?
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    Raven

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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  Raven on Sat Nov 27, 2010 2:50 am





    How bout an H for Hathor
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    orthodoxymoron

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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Sun Nov 28, 2010 8:33 am

    Thank-you Raven. What if Hathor (or equivalent) wrote the Red Letters? I really am both reverent and irreverent. My insecurity makes me appear to be more flippant than I really am. I may not post as much, for the rest of the year. I'm going to do a lot of reading and reflecting. Namaste.
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    Carol
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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  Carol on Sun Nov 28, 2010 11:18 am

    It is that time of year isn't it? I was thinking something similar like putting time in for meditation and more reflection as well. It's too easy to get swept up in the whirlwind of daily life (especially these days) and lose sight of what is meaningful... our own spiritual nature.

    Would you like for me to send you some Hawaiian Christmas cookies Oxy?

    http://www.cookie-recipe-club.com/shortbread-cookie-recipe.html


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    With deepest respect ~ Aloha & Mahalo, Carol
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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  Carol on Sun Nov 28, 2010 1:45 pm

    Oxy, there are two humans I know who from the angelic realm, incarnated and living on the planet. I suspect there are more but these two I'm certain of and it has been verified. One is the man I'm married to and the other is Suriel.

    I think you may enjoy having discourse with him because he knows his stuff.

    http://www.themistsofavalon.net/alternative-esoteric-physics-f19/are-we-living-in-a-designer-universe-t865.htm#25115


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    With deepest respect ~ Aloha & Mahalo, Carol
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    Brook

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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  Brook on Sun Nov 28, 2010 1:48 pm

    Carol wrote:Oxy, there are two humans I know who from the angelic realm, incarnated and living on the planet. I suspect there are more but these two I'm certain of and it has been verified. One is the man I'm married to and the other is Suriel.

    I think you may enjoy having discourse with him because he knows his stuff.

    http://www.themistsofavalon.net/alternative-esoteric-physics-f19/are-we-living-in-a-designer-universe-t865.htm#25115

    I agree...it's so nice to see him here.....it's like an early Christmas present santa
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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Sun Nov 28, 2010 9:39 pm

    Carol wrote:It is that time of year isn't it? I was thinking something similar like putting time in for meditation and more reflection as well. It's too easy to get swept up in the whirlwind of daily life (especially these days) and lose sight of what is meaningful... our own spiritual nature.

    Would you like for me to send you some Hawaiian Christmas cookies Oxy?

    http://www.cookie-recipe-club.com/shortbread-cookie-recipe.html

    Thank-you Carol - especially for the cookie offer. I have a close relative who is a trained baker - so maybe they can bake some of these cookies for Christmas - to save on postage, shipping, and trouble. I'm also trying to be as private as possible - although I know this is impossible with all of the physical, electronic, and supernatural surveillance going on. Also - thank-you for the angelic link. I continue to be mystified by the whole subject of 'sacred people'. I continue to wonder about the subject of Responsibility - historically and presently - and I especially wonder which sacred people and sacred texts have properly promoted Responsibility. Anyway - once I recover from getting chewed-out by Raven - maybe I'll concentrate on the angelic realm while I eat Christmas cookies.
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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  Carol on Sun Nov 28, 2010 9:48 pm

    Oxy, always the gentleman. Raven fell over the edge and being chewed out by her is a reflection of who she is in the world, not you. You came out of the exchange looking like a shining knight in armor. Raven reminded me more of the whore of Babylon.

    Actually, I was really impressed by how you handled it all. Congratulations on not losing your composure. Flowers

    Meanwhile, my four planets in Libra were doing summersaults and my Aries moon took off with the lance. (sigh)


    Last edited by Carol on Tue Nov 30, 2010 1:20 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : typo)


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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  orthodoxymoron on Sun Nov 28, 2010 11:03 pm

    Thank-you Carol. I continue to be interested in the Goddess Concept - in both positive and negative ways. Could a Goddess potentially be genius/pure/idealistic/kind and insane/corrupt/reprobate/cruel at the same time? Sort of a Dr. Jekyll and Ms. Hyde? Once again - consider Anna in 'V' - and then do some extrapolation and filling in the blanks. When one contemplates the stratosphere of leadership - things might become very strange. If someone had been ruling Earth for thousands of years - knew everything about everything - had complete reincarnational recall - a 500 IQ - the equivalent of 100 PhD's - had been involved in unthinkable battles, atrocities, and power struggles, etc, etc, etc - what might they be like? "What is one to do when, in order to rule men, it is necessary to deceive them?"— Helena Blavatsky The Secret Doctrine


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    Re: Red Letter Church

    Post  Carol on Mon Nov 29, 2010 7:00 am

    Anna's character in V is an interesting one, is she not? She reminded me of the reptilian "hive mind" element that does exist. Again, as suriel said we're dealing with unintegrated beings who have developed other elements and aspects of their own species. Brilliant - yet lacking compassion on the whole and cut off from the upper spiritual dimensions. One can see in V how Anna creates the link to "hive mind." Having personally experience that once all I can say from a human perspective is that they have the ability to release serotonin in the brain and create a psuedo effect of expansion of consciousness similar to something one can experience taking drugs. It's a wonderful feeling and experience feeling connected at that level... yet it is a lower vibrational level and artificially produced. It too can have an addictive quality just as alcohol or taking crack can - where one is often seeking to have an altered experience, a high, that comes with expanded consciousness. Yet as wonderful as this experience can be it is born of external sources to help create this state of awareness and is not born from ones own inner spiritual work where these internal chemical processes are the result of genuine spiritual advancement.

    Years ago I had a kundalini experience that is still with me which was the result of years of spiritual practice, yet when it happened I was really lost as there was no teacher to help me work with the energy. You see, as the kundalini rises it also runs into all spiritual blocks created from karma that one brings into this life or created in this life. Therefore, all unresolved karma had to be worked through first.. at least or me to benefit from the higher aspects of consciousness as I was pulled back by the physical aspects (unresolved karma) to be played out first. My nervous system is different then others.. but not different from those like me who have had similar experiences of NDE. When someone has had a NDE they are free of some major ego constructs because ego does not exist in these other spiritual dimensions.

    Ego is for this 3D dimension so the soul or spirit can experience duality. It is by experiencing duality that spirt makes choices and then deals with the consequences of these choices. It is in dealing with the consequences of choices that the soul experiences all that it can experience in human form. This means one must grow in awareness beyond just how one experiences oneself at the ego level. Ego is just a construct. Think of ego like the walls of a house. Yet take away the walls and conscious awareness still exists. How cool is that?

    For example, have you ever waken up from sleep... and found your conscious awareness, that part o yourself that you experience in your head, elsewhere? I frequently have these types of experiences where I'm somewhere else. Sometimes my awareness is out over clouds above a lightening display, or outside looking up at the stars ore even in another dimension. When we are asleep, ego is set aside, yet upon waking up we can experience who we really are without ego. This also happens when one enters into the higher spiritual realms from a meditation practice or wakes up before the sides of the house pop back into place.

    Conscious awareness is an aspect of god... god is intelligent design and awareness...only so vast it includes everything (matter and non-matter). Imagine oneself as that dew drop merging into Cosmic Consciousness where one experiences the whole of existence (without walls) as one is also experiencing singularity and the ocean. This means awareness is expanded to include all that is. It is like tasting a drollop of wine from the vat... yet one's sense of individuality is in a state of awareness sans ego. The observing ego generally is in a state of shock and awe as this type of awareness is so expansive that ego recognizes it is nothing compared to spiritual reality.

    Nothing is a key word and concept here and something worth exploring because to experience ones own nothingness is what is at the heart of the discussion. Take away all construsts and what is left? Take away the buildings walls and what is left? Nothing... yet consciousnesss still exists. Awareness still exists. There is no goddess - no god in the human sense. All that exists is awareness of all that is and the primordial soup of potential before constructs ever even exist.


    Oxy, in your quest you are trying to explore a construct when focusing on the goddess and in doing so you are also exploring all the other constructs that people create to help make up the goddess. Constructs take on form. Just as you have an image of the walls in your mind so you can build a house, so do others have images in their mind of what the goddess is and thus create something out of nothing. The issue here is that you are attempting to understand a construct born out of your own and others concepts of what a goddess is. It's like trying to invent a mythical being and forgetting that this being is born of mental constructs created out of ones own need to relate to an externalized aspect of ones own conscousness. Subsequently there are goddesses who have been created this way who live in the astral realm... and they have their own existence in the astral realm.. but it is all constructs. These are different then spiritual beings born of god's own handiwork. These construsts are co-creations born of humans's need to related to something a bit more solid then just nothingness, which is the heart of god. Not the nothingness void of life, but the "nothingness" where all life originates from. Personally, I have found it almost next to impossible to describe how this works because its like describing the view from the mountain top to those who only have the experience of living in caves. However, the human spirt comes from the mountain top and knows what is real. But the ego is the cave. One must break the walls of the ego to be free to see the view from the mountain top.

    Okay, here is another example. For years one of my meditations was "Who am I?" over and over I repeated this and many hours were spent in viewing images that crossed the conscious awareness of my mind until nothing appeared. All that was left was just pure conscious awareness. One enters into a different type of awareness and is not pulled by emotion or images, or past life energy. One just is.

    The whole purpose of constructs is to experience god's expansiveness and creation in action. This is where one learns how to co-create with consciousness and with care. Our mental constructs are real things in the astral realms and when we pass over, sans our physical form, what we think is what we create. Hence, the words neti, neti, neti (not this, not this, not this) take on a whole new meaning because we are teaching ourselves to see beyond illusion (the goddess and constructs) and experience the expanded conscious awareness that exists and is born out of pure compassion. When the mystics speak of god as love...this is the experience at this level. Only constructs can prevent or hinder the fullness of this eexperience as they are like bricks between oneself and all that is.

    Anyway, I hope in my own small way to help you break through some of your constructs here so you understand that what you are seeking is a projection of your own internalized concept of your own inner divine femenine. What I see happening here is that you are working on integrating this aspect of your own beingness and haven't yet realized that your beingness is all of it. The good, the bad, the ugly, the beautiul... everything that is, is also part of god just as you are part of god, that dew drop in the shinning sea. Each of us has a sense of our own individuality and awareeness and connectedness at these higher spiritual dimensional levels because who we are is the stuff the stars are made of. Truly, Anna pales next to what the human spirit really is. As beings (Anna) at this level of existence only seek the material (construct) form and miss out on the Divine expression/experience of existence. I do not seek to live forever in a human body because my spirit is eternal. Why drag a body around when spirit can fly?


    _________________
    What is life?
    It is the flash of a firefly in the night, the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset.

    With deepest respect ~ Aloha & Mahalo, Carol

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