Judaism and the Mystical Christ

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Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Thu May 28, 2015 2:14 pm

Hey everyone! I know I haven't been on here much lately. But in the past, I know a lot of people around here were reading and enjoying my blog - and I just finished the first part of a project that I have put more work into than anything else I've ever written. So I thought I'd share!

In this post, I write about how a paradigm shift is necessary in order to understand mysticism, and I talk about the concept of repentance.

Judaism and the Mystical Christ, Ch. 1: On Paradigm Shifts
- Geoff
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Fri May 29, 2015 10:29 am

I've published the second "chapter" of my new blog series. This post deals with communication theory, biblical interpretation, and how Jews read the Bible.

Judaism and the Mystical Christ, Ch. 2: The Bible and Communication Theory
- Geoff
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Sat May 30, 2015 4:28 am

In this section of the series, I explore the problems with the "paradigm of idea-priority" - I ask what faith really entails, and what place "works" have in the Christian faith. And I frame this within the question of what Mysticism is.

Judaism and the Mystical Christ, Ch. 3: What is Christian Mysticism?
- Geoff
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Mon Jun 01, 2015 2:52 am

In this post I explore the following: what exactly is fundamentalism? How is mysticism different? What does this have to do with Judaism? And why should we care about Judaism?

Judaism and the Mystical Christ, Ch. 4: Mysticism, Fundamentalism, and Judaism
- Geoff
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Tue Jun 02, 2015 2:42 am

- Geoff
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Wed Jun 03, 2015 3:41 am

In this post, I begin to explore the symbolic meaning within the Genesis Creation stories:

Judaism and the Mystical Christ, Ch. 6: Creation
- Geoff
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Thu Jun 04, 2015 3:36 am

In this post, I continue my meditation on the Genesis creation stories by focusing on the nature of God that is revealed within:

Judaism and the Mystical Christ, Ch. 7: Beginning
- Geoff
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Fri Jun 05, 2015 9:05 am

Next post is up - here I meditate on the meaning of the Biblical phrase: the image of God. Who is made in God's image, and what does that mean? What does it mean to be made in the image of God?

Judaism and the Mystical Christ, Ch. 8: The Image of God
- Geoff
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Sat Jun 06, 2015 5:29 am

In this post, I explore some of the connections between a mystical view of Christianity and modern science - especially in the area of Quantum Physics.

http://fatherlearningtolove.blogspot.com/2015/06/judaism-and-mystical-christ-ch-9-let.html
- Geoff
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Sun Jun 07, 2015 4:43 am

I went ahead and published the last two sections of "Book I" of my series: Judaism and the Mystical Christ, for anyone who is following along.

Judaism and the Mystical Christ, Ch. 10: The Tree of Life

Judaism and the Mystical Christ, Ch. 11: Concluding Thoughts for "Book I"
- Geoff
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Sun Jun 07, 2015 10:36 am

By the way, I'd love to hear feedback....
- Geoff
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Eaglesway » Sun Jun 07, 2015 11:39 am

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Last edited by Eaglesway on Tue Jun 09, 2015 5:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Sun Jun 07, 2015 11:47 am

I think you may be on the right wave-length, there, Eaglesway. I'd love to hear your thoughts as you read other posts, if you do. :D
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Eaglesway » Sun Jun 07, 2015 4:31 pm

I will gladly do that, and I intend to read them all :o)......but I would like to know if kabbala is the baseline of your presentation, and what place Jesus has - as the unique Son, in your paradigm. If you prefer to discuss that here or in PM or e-mail, I would like to hear what you have to say. :)
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Eaglesway » Sun Jun 07, 2015 4:37 pm

Of course that may become apparent to me as I continue to read, but I fgured I would just ask, and engage as I read your pages.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Eaglesway » Sun Jun 07, 2015 5:15 pm

I enjoyed Paradigm Shift. Having started at the end (chpters 9, 10, 11) and now starting from the beginning. I will just share my thoughts as I read further chapters.

The corruption of words in Christianity and the fear of questions and looking outside the locally approved paradigm is definitely the antithesis of true spirituality.

Christians words have been corrupted and then made into "hot buttons" which either shut down conversation and exploration, or enflame negative reactions and threats of damnation, exclusion, etc. This is common in science and religion. Inherent power structure maintenance procedures.

Any discussion can be approprate for someone with nothing to fear, considering however that such a person will have foundations from former paradigms as well, some of which are still valid and part of the new paradigm shift. I am only using those words in keeping with the terminology of the writing.

I see it as simply, "the renewing of the mind"

Yet we do speak wisdom among those who are mature; a wisdom, however, not of this age nor of the rulers of this age, who are passing away; 7 but we speak God’s wisdom in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God predestined before the ages to our glory; 8 the wisdom which none of the rulers of this age has understood; for if they had understood it they would not have crucified the Lord of glory; 9 but just as it is written,

“Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard,
And which have not entered the heart of man,
All that God has prepared for those who love Him.”

For to us God revealed them through the Spirit; for the Spirit searches all things, even the depths of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so the thoughts of God no one knows except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things freely given to us by God, which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, combining spiritual thoughts with spiritual words.


I like the idea that when looking at a tree, fully developed, bearing fruit in season- there is nothing of it that was not fully there in the seed, in the shoot, in the sapling-

At any given point in time it may not look like the same thing, especially if viewed out of context- like your photo analogy of the background versus the context- but everything is there in the seed.

In our case, the seed being Jesus Christ, in whom are hid all the treasures of the wisdom and knowledge of God- we may think something is of the seed that is not.This can restrict or mutate growth. Or we may be unwilling to have the chaff broken in order to experience growth at the cost of a form we are comforatble in- but even so all that is needed is in the seed- all the requisite raw material is there.

So when Peter says, "You were begotten from above unto a fervent love of the brethren by the incorruptible seed of the word(logos) of God"- then the seed within us is Jesus, "The radiance of the Father's glory and exact representation of His nature". The true self, the light that lights every person who comes into the world. Thats why I also like the concept of "remembering the divine nature".

If the seed is allowed to reach maturity, we will have been conformed to the image of Christ the image of God, an emanation of YHWH.....but to the seed the full grown tree may look like a space alien or a giant monster so we defer to the comforters who tells us, "There is no need to go under the earth, or to the threshing floor, you may remain a seed forever- and WE PREFER IT THAT WAY".

But when we look at the Son of God in all His awesome wonder, expressed in such simple splendor of human frailty and humility- we ought to recognize that there is going to have to be something major transpire in us if we are to become anything like He was in the earth- which is what the earth needs and why we are enlisted in priestly service, unless just knowing something as become enough for us(shame, shame :lol: )

"Until we all attain to the unity of the faith, unto a mature man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ. Then we will no longer be as children, tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine, but speaking the truth in love, the body will be edified through the proper working of each individual part"(something like that in Eph 4)

But first- Eph 3 "strengthened with might by His Spirit in your inner man, that being rooted and grounded in love you might know whith all saints what is the height and breadth and depth of the love of Christ and be filled up to all the fulness of God.

and before that eph 1 "That He would give you a spirit of wisom and revelation in the knowledge of God, that you may kno what is the hope of your calling, the riches of His inheritance in the saints, and the surpassing greatness of His power towards us who believe"

Whole lotta paradigms gotta fall before we get anywhere near there. Whole lotta principality and power gotta, "Let my people go"!

The hope of our calling is that we would be conformed to the image of Jesus the Son (for all who He foreknew He predestined to be conformed to the image of the son of God.)

The riches of His inheritance in the saints is that all of what Jesus is, is in us, in the incorruptible seed- Christ in you the hope of glory.

The surpassing power towards us who believed is that Spirit within us by which, if we are willing, the seed can become the tree, fully formed in the image of Christ, bearing fruit in season.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Eaglesway » Sun Jun 07, 2015 7:13 pm

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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Wed Jun 10, 2015 4:34 am

You have some great thoughts in those comments - thank you.

To this:

Eaglesway wrote:I will gladly do that, and I intend to read them all :o)......but I would like to know if kabbala is the baseline of your presentation, and what place Jesus has - as the unique Son, in your paradigm. If you prefer to discuss that here or in PM or e-mail, I would like to hear what you have to say. :)


I am first and foremost a Christian. I cannot get away from this - even if I were to decide to turn my back on Christianity (I tried that once - agnosticism just didn't work out for me), wherever I went from there, I think it would be obvious to people that I was interpreting their religion through a Christian lens.

As someone who believes that God loves all, intends to save all, can save all, and...and...believes that the Holy Spirit's communication is not limited to "Christians" (as if God were limited and could not communicate through, say, a Buddhist), I feel that it is helpful to cross borders and to get a look at myself through Kabbalah. I think that Judaism is particularly a good lens look at Christianity through, since Christianity ought to be seen as a Jewish reform movement (Jesus, Paul, Peter, James, etc. were not Christians - they were Jews, and they considered Jesus to be the fulfillment of Jewish values, not someone who had established a new religion).

As to Jesus being the "unique Son" - Jesus is certainly unique. But I think we need to be very careful about how we talk about Jesus. The Evangelical paradigm has far to casually placed a flat equal sign between Jesus and God. But the Bible never equates Jesus with God - rather, it presents Jesus as revelation. Colossians 1:15 says that "[t]he Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation." John 6:46 says "No one has seen the Father except the one who is from God; only he has seen the Father." And perhaps most fascinating of all, Hebrews 1:3 says "The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven." Note how "flat equal sign" does not work well with these verses - the Hebrews one in particular.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Eaglesway » Sat Jun 13, 2015 12:46 am

I am not one who believes in the flat = sign. But I do believe God has spoken to us in His son, pre-eminently. While the terminology of kaballah is from early Judaism and the language of the prophets, the schools of the prophets and generations of rabbi's midrash, and provides some wonderful insights into the processes of truth...."Let there be light", "Light out of darkness" etc, the conclusions are varied and so they can lead to confusion or delusion even as the scriptures can for be formless and void for those who do not have the Spirit.....the veil remains. The veil is taken away in Christ, so the place where all of these early influences diverge from recognizing the pre-eminence of Jesus, not as the flat equal but as the "radiance of the Father's glory and the exact representation of His nature", is the place where they begin to slide into deception.

While God can speak through a Buddhist, He is not speaking through Buddhism, per say- because the conclusions reached, even where the processes have truth in them, are not enlightened to the revelation of Jesus Christ. I do agree tho that the revelation of Jesus transcends the religion and biblical miscommunication about "Christianity" that is so rampant today.

I believe the discernment of God towards man, that which divides soul and spirit, bone and marrow, begins with this...

For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

and ends with this...

For when Gentiles who do not have the Law do instinctively the things of the Law, these, not having the Law, are a law to themselves, 15 in that they show the work of the Law written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness and their thoughts alternately accusing or else defending them, 16 on the day when, according to my gospel, God will judge the secrets of men through Christ Jesus.

So that individual judgment is by standards to deep for us to comprehend, quantify and codify the way we love to..... but the true revelation of Jesus as the "radiance of the father's glory and the exact representation of His nature" is the light that shines out of darkness to remove all the veils until the "light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ" is the only naked truth that remains, all the mists of philosophy, religion, vaporised by the face shining like the sun in its strength- which is knowing Him, which is the universal destiny.

Of course as you have thoroughly and I think correctly pointed out, the current paradigm of Western evangelicalism hasnt entered that, having forsaken most of the mystic reality of Christ in the spirit for a sort of stone tablet 2 dimensional rendering(my opnion). But i think Jesus and Peter and Paul brought much more than a reform movement. They brought a new creation that swallowed up the old and buried it in the one new man, "Behold I am making all things new".

Of course we take that to mean , "Behold He is making everything like we want to see it" LOLOL, but nevertheless, the roots of the new creation are SO Hebrew because the identity(I AM) of the Messiah transcends all of the former voices, absorbs and fulfills them and reposts them invigorated in a paradigm as new and different as a giant oak tree looks to the acorn that fell to the ground or the three year old sapling that wavered in the wind, so that identity is more in the spirit of the seeking and the direction, as you put it, of the scatter plot of history- seen as a trajectory that begins with subjecting the creation to futility and ends with God becoming all in all, after every veil has been vaporized, and every adversary won by love through the revlation of Christ crucified(Savior) and Christ raised(Lord) and Christ ascended(Messiah).
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Sat Jun 13, 2015 5:28 am

Eaglesway wrote:I do believe God has spoken to us in His son, pre-eminently.


As do I.

Eaglesway wrote:While God can speak through a Buddhist, He is not speaking through Buddhism, per say- because the conclusions reached, even where the processes have truth in them, are not enlightened to the revelation of Jesus Christ.


Suggestion: read Jesus and Buddha: The Parallel Sayings. And then, if you enjoy that and want more, check out Jesus, Buddha, Krishna, and Lao Tzu: The Parallel Sayings. It's really quite amazing - there are these sayings within Christian and Buddhist literature that parallel each other so closely as to almost be a quote. For the longest time, I thought that the theory that Buddhism had influenced Jesus had absolutely no basis in fact, but later on, when I recognized just how closely some of these sayings parallel each other, I wasn't so sure. And then I read about Buddhist missionary efforts, long before Jesus, and how certain areas of the Roman empire where Christianity seems to have bloomed in the early years were areas where many religious philosophies were present - possibly even Buddhism. So I would have to disagree with you - I think God did speak through Buddhism.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Eaglesway » Sat Jun 13, 2015 8:03 am

I didnt say God "didn t" speak through Buddhism, which came before Christ, I said He "doesnt". All truth emanates from the fountain, Jesus the son of man and the son of God. The conclusions that wisdom approaches are the measure of whether God is speaking in them, and there is only one name under heaven whereby men can receive healing and deliverance from sin.

God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, 2 in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world. 3 And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, 4 having become as much better than the angels, as He has inherited a more excellent name than they.

These four things, incarnation, emmanation, articulation and redemption converge perfectly in Jesus(imo) -from the beginning as the wisdom and power of God.

The idea that Jesus was influenced by Buddhism is (imo)contrary to His being the incarnation of the wisdom of God, it is more likely the Buddha was influenced by observations from the spirit of Wisdom emanating from YHWH throughout creation since the beginning, the logos. Jesus was not in the world and Judaism was limited in reach, so as the ancients meditated on God they received wisdom that cries out in the streets. Someone else made a religion out of those observations later. Buddha was just practising and articulating them, within the limitations of the available light.

I think that where there are parrallels in the wisdom of the ancients, they are explained in Romans 1, which I posted earlier....20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.

But since Jesus made purification of sins and sat down at the right hand, their is only one name, to which every knee must bow and every tongue confess- one word(logos) into which all words(wisdom) are being subsumed in this age and the next, so while there is wisdom in certain elements of Buddhism and Hinduism, and parallel statements, the destination of their pathway is in error, as well as, in part the path itself as they seek to achieve a state of grace that can only be received through the blood of Jesus, so their veils remain intact, the same as with the Jews who do not see Messiah, and Christians who only see Him through the stained glass of systematic theology and western cultural expression of religious Christianity.

But I am sure you have had this conversation ad infintum and I am probably not adding anything new to what you have already heard.

In other words, it is not just the parallel sayings that are important, but the contrary ones as well, and the ultimate destinations of their pathway.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Holy-Fool-P-Zombie » Sat Jun 13, 2015 8:58 am

fatherlearningtolove wrote:
Suggestion: read Jesus and Buddha: The Parallel Sayings. And then, if you enjoy that and want more, check out Jesus, Buddha, Krishna, and Lao Tzu: The Parallel Sayings.


Some footnotes here, regarding the dialogue between Father Learning to Love and Eagles Way.

Actually, I read Jesus and Buddha: The Parallel Sayings, many years ago. I find it interesting - for example - that both have teachings involving a mustard seed. But I really like the book by Zen Buddhist Thich Nhat Hanh entitled Living Buddha, Living Christ.

I'm in accord with the Roman Catholic position from Vatican II:
"the Church rejects nothing that is true and holy in these religions"


I'll even go so far to agreed with Catholic writer Wayne Teasdale in The Mystic Heart: Discovering a Universal Spirituality in the World's Religions. Or the Perennial Tradition points by Roman Catholic priest Father Richard:

The Perennial Tradition encompasses the recurring themes in all of the world’s religions and philosophies that continue to say:

    There is a Divine Reality underneath and inherent in the world of things,
    There is in the human soul a natural capacity, similarity, and longing for this Divine Reality, and
    The final goal of existence is union with this Divine Reality.


Having said all that, Christ to me, is the glue guiding and holding everything together. Now Christ can be the external belief of the exclusive Christian, the Logos in the gospel of John (filling the whole cosmos), the inner light of the Quakers, the Christ consciousness of certain yoga and new through Christian groups, etc. I feel Christ guides and helps people, in all these ways - and much more!

As far as the Judaism goes, the Roman Catholic Church since Vatican II, feels they still have a valid covenant with God. In the ‘Jewish Covenant with God,’ According to Pope Francis, it says:
We hold the Jewish people in special regard because their covenant with God has never been revoked…”


I can't really say I disagree with that position.

Buddhism is classified as a religion, but it is also a system of psychology and/or religious psychology. Psychologists and scientists - for example - have taken elements like Insight Meditation, and used it successfully for therapy, stress reduction, etc. We also need to look at the scientific elements and research, deemed from the systematic teachings. Just read the Wiki - Buddhism and psychology article on the topic. So it's entirely possible, in the case of Buddhism, to extract elements from religion and transpose them to the realm of science.

And regarding created in the image and likeness of God. The Eastern Orthodox position "Image Is Everything" is what I follow.

Speaking of Kabbalah. Did you know there is a Christian Kabbalah tradition?

As far as mysticism goes, my favorite writer on Christian mysticism is Evelyn Underhill. The book Mysticism by Evelyn Underhill is a classic on the subject. Your local US public library, inter-library loan program (and similar programs in other countries), should be able to obtain a copy. I also like The Big Book of Christian Mysticism: The Essential Guide to Contemplative Spirituality by Carl McColman. I was browsing through it in a bookshop a few days ago. It's really good and easy to read.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Sun Jun 14, 2015 4:47 am

randylkemp wrote:But I really like the book by Zen Buddhist Thich Nhat Hanh entitled Living Buddha, Living Christ.

I love that book. Right before I discovered Universalism, I had read a book called "Who Is This Man?: The Unpredictable Impact of the Inescapable Jesus" that had a profound impact on me. In one of my favorite chapters of the book, the author (John Ortberg) had emphasized the point that when Jesus said "love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind", the last part ("with all your mind") was an addition to the original command. Ortberg then draws out through historical examples how - while most cultures would destroy the literature of other competing cultures - Christianity would preserve it. So Ortberg makes the point that Christians are not supposed to ignore and destroy the intellectual efforts of other cultures, but to engage them. And if we find truth, that's great! As Augustine says: "all truth is God's truth."

Shortly after reading this book, I discovered Universalism, and spent months researching that topic. It meshed very well with Ortberg's point, outlined above. I had a friend from Japan who was a Jōdo Shinshū Buddhist. I decided I should know more about my friend's beliefs, so I did a little research after asking him about it, and that lead to me writing one of my first blog posts about comparisons between this version of Buddhism and Christianity here. Shortly after this, I found out another one of my friends was a Buddhist, and after talking to him about that, he lent me his copy of "Living Buddha, Living Christ". You know, I don't think I ever really understood the Holy Spirit until I read the way Thich Nhat Hanh talked about the subject. It was a profound and moving experience for me, and had a deep impact. I'll never be the same.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Holy-Fool-P-Zombie » Sun Jun 14, 2015 5:27 am

Another book I liked and read is entitled Without Buddha I Could Not Be a Christian by Paul F. Knitter. He is a Roman Catholic, professor of Catholic theology; a former Roman Catholic priest and a practicing Zen Buddhist.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Sun Jun 14, 2015 10:19 am

randylkemp wrote:Another book I liked and read is entitled Without Buddha I Could Not Be a Christian by Paul F. Knitter. He is a Roman Catholic, professor of Catholic theology; a former Roman Catholic priest and a practicing Zen Buddhist.


Yup - that's a good one too! I need to eventually read Introducing Theologies of Religion by the same author.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Eaglesway » Sun Jun 14, 2015 2:35 pm

Quote from Parallel Sayings.....

"We know somewhat more about the words of the historical Jesus, but not nearly as much as most Christians think. Jesus and his original followers spoke Aramaic, (the New Testament was written entirely in Greek by Greek–speaking Christians) and they left no writings at all. Many of the words attributed to Jesus were actually the words of the anonymous authors who, unlike Jesus, were Christians. Neither were any of these men eye-witnesses to the life and teachings of Jesus."

Lots of assumptions are presented in the opening pages of The Parallel Sayings, which I don't mind if they are presented as theory, but they are presented as settled facts.

It is not known for certain that there were never any Aramaic writings. Their are widespread disagreements among eminent scholars about the statements rendered as definite facts in this introduction, I assume because it furthers the case of the writer. The archeological evidence does not go back that far, but certainly Peter was an eye witness of Jesus' life and teaching, and John's gospel is cnsidered by many eminent scholars to have been written by John.

Since the book presents Krisha as an avatar(incarnation of a deity) almost right off and uses the hypothesis of the four major religions as four pathways to the same point- it is clear to me that Jesus as the Only Begotten Son and His virgin birth are considered mythical developements by the devotees of later generations. So this is clealry a universalist presentation, which is not offensive to me... I just think it is easier when people come right out and say where they are coming from, regardless what reactions they anticipate, because it just furthers communication so effectively.

Avatarism is, in my opinion, a teaching that undercuts the unique position of Jesus as having the name above every name. I was a student of metaphysics when I became a Christian through a sovereign revelation of Jesus much like Pauls. For me, Jesus is the only avatar, by virgin birth. I believe in the virgin birth, perfect life, death, burial, resurrection of Jesus Christ, ascended Messiah of earth and Lord of the Universe.

As to avatarism, Jesus said, "I come in my Father's name and you do not receive me. Another will come in His own name and Him you will receive."

I believe that the teaching of avatarism will prepare the way for one who will come as an avatar, but will not be an avatar of YHWH. I know, sounds kind of alarmist- but I'd rather just come right up front and say what I believe.

Because teaching that all four major religions are slightly different pathways to the same destination is not the benign simple interpretational presentation it can seem to be at first.

It begins forthwith describing the scriptures as degenerations from the truths of the original teacher, who was one of many such teachers all of whom were mystics who had a claim to experiencing ultimate reality as their mystical pedigree.

The acceptance of the suppositions that are required to go there( I am not condemning them, let every man be convinced in his own heart- it will all come out in the wash) create a substantially(to say the least) different faith, which in my opinion is a mutation not a shoot off the root- but then I see Jesus in that archaic way, as Paul presented Him in these four points as the unique son exalted above all heavens in Colossians 1 and Heb 1, concluding at Phil 2 and Rev5:13


Col 1
15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. 17 He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. 18 He is also head of the body, the church; and He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that He Himself will come to have first place in everything. 19 For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, 20 and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven.

Jesus is before all, over all, and will be in all. He was in the Father before creation and all creation came through Him. He alone is the reconciler of all by His atoning sacrifice- AS WELL AS BEING THE TEACHER AND THE MASTER.

God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, 2 in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world. 3 And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, 4 having become as much better than the angels, as He has inherited a more excellent name than they.

5 For to which of the angels did He ever say,

“You are My Son,
Today I have begotten You”?
And again,

“I will be a Father to Him
And He shall be a Son to Me”?
6 And when He again brings the firstborn into the world, He says,

“And let all the angels of God worship Him.”
7 And of the angels He says,

“Who makes His angels winds,
And His ministers a flame of fire.”
8 But of the Son He says,

“Your throne, O God, is forever and ever,
And the righteous scepter is the scepter of [h]His kingdom.
9 “You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness;
Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You
With the oil of gladness above Your companions.”
10 And,

“You, Lord, in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth,
And the heavens are the works of Your hands;
11 They will perish, but You remain;
And they all will become old like a garment,
12 And like a mantle You will roll them up;
Like a garment they will also be changed.
But You are the same,
And Your years will not come to an end.”
13 But to which of the angels has He ever said,

“Sit at My right hand,
Until I make Your enemies
A footstool for Your feet


Jesus is THE radiance of the Father's glory. He alone possesses that unique triumph over sin. Yes, the cross is a WAY. But it is also the means by which Jesus as the only begotten accomplished a victory no other in history could, and as the result He has been EXALTED AND ENTHRONED OVER ALL, having received a better name and a higher seat- in the bosom of the Father/Creator YHWH.

5 Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, 6 who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. 8 Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. 9 For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.


These statements about Jesus in the scriptures are either myth and hyperbole surrounding the secret message of the way that all four religions espouse(supposedly) in the same way, or else,they are true statements about the exact nature of who Jesus is in character(upon which we agree) but also in His estate within the cosmos of God's creation(upon which we probably disagree). Right hand of God. Word(expressed thought) of God. Name above every name. Ruler of all until all rule and power and authority are done away. The name of the person unto whom every knee shall bow and which every tongue will confess as the adversaries are rendered advocates is the name of Jesus Christ Lord of lords, King of kings.

Only then will God become all in all. This is an extremely important foundation. Without it what you have left is not the faith of Jesus and the apostles.

Rev 5

11 Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne and the living creatures and the elders; and the number of them was myriads of myriads, and thousands of thousands, 12 saying with a loud voice,

“Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.”

13 And every created thing which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all things in them, I heard saying,

“To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.”

14 And the four living creatures kept saying, “Amen.” And the elders fell down and worshiped.

In this vision- the fulfillment of Phil 2 above, we see the prophetic alpha of Christ's preeminence displayed before the entire universe.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Sun Jun 14, 2015 5:51 pm

Eaglesway wrote:Lots of assumptions are presented in the opening pages of The Parallel Sayings, which I don't mind if they are presented as theory, but they are presented as settled facts.

I'd press you to challenge whether or not you're the one making assumptions. Let me put it another way - many Christians have been taught - quite dogmatically - to make other assumptions. Assumptions which - in the face of the evidence we have - are simply not reasonable to make.

Eaglesway wrote:certainly Peter was an eye witness of Jesus' life and teaching, and John's gospel is cnsidered by many eminent scholars to have been written by John.

What you will find if you enter into the world of scholarship is that it is nearly unanimous among scholarship that neither 1 and 2 Peter were written by Peter, nor John written by John. Do me a favor and look at the number of references on the wikipedia article that says that the author of John is anonymous. Note also that you'll find a similar statement about the Petrine epistles in this article.

Since you spent a lot of time talking about the virgin birth, I thought I would pass along something I wrote about that subject.

As to individual statements which seem to be exclusive - we need to put them into their literary and historical context to understand what was being said. We need to understand just how blasphemous Rome was about its Caesars and then see how quite often, phrases that were used to talk about the Caesars were redirected by the Christian authors to talk about Jesus - a poor nobody who was executed by the authorities of his day. And thus, the purpose of these statements is not to change the radically inclusive Jesus into an exclusive bouncer, but to overturn the exclusivity of empire.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Eaglesway » Sun Jun 14, 2015 8:42 pm

fatherlearningtolove wrote:
Eaglesway wrote:Lots of assumptions are presented in the opening pages of The Parallel Sayings, which I don't mind if they are presented as theory, but they are presented as settled facts.

I'd press you to challenge whether or not you're the one making assumptions. Let me put it another way - many Christians have been taught - quite dogmatically - to make other assumptions. Assumptions which - in the face of the evidence we have - are simply not reasonable to make.

Eaglesway wrote:certainly Peter was an eye witness of Jesus' life and teaching, and John's gospel is cnsidered by many eminent scholars to have been written by John.

What you will find if you enter into the world of scholarship is that it is nearly unanimous among scholarship that neither 1 and 2 Peter were written by Peter, nor John written by John. Do me a favor and look at the number of references on the wikipedia article that says that the author of John is anonymous. Note also that you'll find a similar statement about the Petrine epistles in this article.

Since you spent a lot of time talking about the virgin birth, I thought I would pass along something I wrote about that subject.

As to individual statements which seem to be exclusive - we need to put them into their literary and historical context to understand what was being said. We need to understand just how blasphemous Rome was about its Caesars and then see how quite often, phrases that were used to talk about the Caesars were redirected by the Christian authors to talk about Jesus - a poor nobody who was executed by the authorities of his day. And thus, the purpose of these statements is not to change the radically inclusive Jesus into an exclusive bouncer, but to overturn the exclusivity of empire.


When disputes arise in the sciences, the proponents of various positions refer to the sources that support their assertions. Philosphers and religionists are no different in that(imo).

I would not want to debate these issues, I just wanted to see where you were coming from- because you have a lot of interesting and true wisdom, but I wasnt sure where you stood in regards to who Jesus is compared to the pantheon of dieties and mystics and wise men of the ages. Only time will tell- for all flesh will see the glory of God together. It will all come out in the wash :)

As far as pseudography is concerned, I have read all the material you posted and more- before there was an internet. Wikepedia is not in itself a reliable source, and most people dont realize anybody can write a Wikipedia entry according to their position, displaying their preferred resources as if they were the only authorities on the matter.

The fact that the scholars who would support apostolic authorship are in the minority is not an authoritative indicator that the majority view is the correct one.

The link you posted for me about the virgn birth was the Wiki on pseudography of Peter 1 & 2, and contained nothing on the virgin birth.

I have come to different conclusions, for reasons I dont want to write a book about here. If you do not believe the scriptures are reliable, and yu don't belive in the virgin birth of Jesus, Do you believe in His death burial and resurrection?

I can conceive of no reason why anyone would accept the scripture concerning His death and resurrection and ascension and reject the testimony of His virgin birth.

I believe that all will be ultimately reconciled to YHWH through the Lord Jesus Christ, His teaching, His Way, and His life, to the glory of God the Father.



I believe Jesus will reign, and that only His name breaks the chains that bind us, and only His blood redeems, by reason of His unique incarnation, the only begotten of the Father- and what that made Him in the way of being set apart from all men.

No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him. John 1:18

I never saw Jesus as an exclusive bouncer. "If I be lifted up I will draw all men unto me."
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Eaglesway » Sun Jun 14, 2015 9:34 pm

One other brief comment.

Jesus Himself implies that much wisdom is self evident. Paul says this in Romans 1 as well,"because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.

and he speaks to the issue of how God judges men outside of the faith in Romans 2.

For when Gentiles who do not have the Law do instinctively the things of the Law, these, not having the Law, are a law to themselves, 15 in that they show the work of the Law written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness and their thoughts alternately accusing or else defending them, 16 on the day when, according to my gospel, God will judge the secrets of men through Christ Jesus. "The foundation of God bears this engraving, 'God knows those that are His' "

So I want to make it clear that I am not saying every unbeliever is going to suffer some kind of punitive judgment(Jesus is not an exclusive bouncer). Wisdom justifies her children and God knows the secrets of each heart and the consciences of men are the books that will be read, revealing their thoughts motives and deeds in the light of the Day- which is the face(presence) of Jesus Christ, the Lamp that searches the minds and hearts.

But I do believe that evry eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him, and every heart will be opened by Him because, "nothing is hidden that will not be brought to light" and "all creatures are open to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do".

The sword that divides asunder soul and spirit making manifest the thoughts and intentionsof the heart is the word that comes from His mouth, which is the testimony of who He is(the singular and supreme emanation of God's love) and will reduce every stronghold and tower, pierce evry veil, until all behold His love without distortion, and embrace it unfetterred because of the love His inevitable revelation brings- the glorious liberty of the children of God. nBecause of this He will gather everything into one in Himself and deliver all to the Father, at which time there will be no more need for rule, power, or authority because God will be all in all, through the overwhelming superiority of His love- a river into which every drop of water will fall, and flow in unrestrained joy and union.

So I don't see God or Jesus as an exclusive judge, but as the singular gem, the I AM, drawing all into union as the Behold Him, as the veils are torn. Paul makes this clear in Acts 17......

I also found an altar with this inscription, ‘TO AN UNKNOWN GOD.’ Therefore what you worship in ignorance, this I proclaim to you. 24 The God who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands; 25 nor is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all things; 26 and He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation, 27 that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; 28 for in Him we live and move and exist, as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we also are His children.

In the course of this groping, of which Paul speaks, for that which gives life and breath to all and surrounds all- both wisdom and foolishness have come forth. But all of it is subsumed into the wonderous beauty of Jesus Christ once He is Beheld.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Holy-Fool-P-Zombie » Mon Jun 15, 2015 4:12 am

Eaglesway wrote:
I would not want to debate these issues, I just wanted to see where you were coming from- because you have a lot of interesting and true wisdom, but I wasnt sure where you stood in regards to who Jesus is compared to the pantheon of dieties and mystics and wise men of the ages. Only time will tell- for all flesh will see the glory of God together. It will all come out in the wash :)


I'm curious, also, where he is coming from. So let me ask a question, to determine where he is NOT coming from.

But first, a word on quotes. Since most religious figures teach some form of ethics, it's possible to have variations on similar themes. Like take the Golden Rule, for instance. Each major faith tradition has a variation of it somewhere. But it doesn't prove everyone is teaching the same thing. You know, let's suppose that the novel Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand was akin to the whole of all recorded religious ethical teachings. And suppose all of us read it. What percentage of the many words and chapters would comprise what we are familiar with? If a group of monkeys (or a computer program, with true randomness from atmospheric noise, liked that used at Random) were to go through the religious books and pick quotes at random, it's probably within a statistical likelihood they can pick similar meaning quotes. But certain parts of say Atlas Struggled might be more likely to create an impression. How impressed would be be with John Galt making a 60 page philosophical speech? How much more would we remember all the lights going off in New York city? The lights going out would probably create a more lasting impression. It's highly probable we could choose quotes at random and get them all within a similar meaning context. It's more probably that some parts leave a more lasting impression on us - therefore, we might quote them. But it only proves that similar meaning quotes can be randomly picked and matched - solely on the basis of probability and statistics alone.

Let's put a twist on this question. Suppose I am taking ethical quotes from famous philosophers. And suppose I found similar ethical quotes from a collection of quotes, like that found at Ethics quotes. Suppose that Aristotle, Friedrich Nietzsche and Immanuel Kant said something similar in ethics. Would we conclude they taught the same philosophy - even in the branch of ethics?

Now to my question regarding what something is not. Are you advocating a form of religious pluralism, as defined by Wiki - Religious pluralism or Got Questions: Question: "What is religious pluralism?"?

Since Wiki gives many definitions, let's run with the Got Questions definition:

Religious pluralism generally refers to the belief in two or more religious worldviews as being equally valid or acceptable
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Eaglesway » Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:26 am

The Parallel Sayings is definitely advocating pluralism.

I believe many people of other religions will be given eternal life at the Great White Throne, but not because of those religions. The parable of the good Samaritan, and the verses in Romans 2 that I quoted earlier cover that. Also in Acts 17 Paul says "God overlooked the times of ignorance", so He is not condemning people who grew up in a Budhist land, or a Hindu land- and never received the witness of the gospel. Their conscience will excuse them or condemn them on the day God opens the secrets of mens hearts through Jesus Christ and many so-called Christians will be saved "but as through fire"

But no one is going to meet Krishna on that day, nor will his name be glorified in the eons to come- as I see it.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Holy-Fool-P-Zombie » Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:40 am

Eaglesway wrote:The Parallel Sayings is definitely advocating pluralism.

I'm sure the book is. But is Father Learning To Love advocating pluralism? That's what I like to know from him.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Mon Jun 15, 2015 11:50 am

Eaglesway wrote:I wasnt sure where you stood in regards to who Jesus is compared to the pantheon of dieties and mystics and wise men of the ages.

For me, Jesus is the revelation of God. Ironically, Buddhism helped me see that in a way I never could have if I hadn't listened to the wisdom of Buddhism - and thus I will always have a fondness for Buddhism.

Jesus is also "the fully Human one" (a phrase that plays well off of the oft used "Son of Man" moniker). I think we miss this in Christianity all too often when we emphasize Jesus' divinity to a point that it is no longer really possible to call him human (example: if we believe God is "omniscient", or all knowing, and we say Jesus is God, then how is it possible that Jesus was tempted? Temptation is not really possible if one knows everything.)

Eaglesway wrote:Only time will tell- for all flesh will see the glory of God together. It will all come out in the wash :)

Agreed.

Eaglesway wrote:As far as pseudography is concerned, I have read all the material you posted and more- before there was an internet. Wikepedia is not in itself a reliable source, and most people dont realize anybody can write a Wikipedia entry according to their position, displaying their preferred resources as if they were the only authorities on the matter.

Not sure you understand how Wikipedia works - it is just as easy for you to go to one of those articles and dispute them. This is very important for recognizing just how reliable Wikipedia actually is. When there is an article with a long history of modifications - and articles like the ones I posted fit this bill - you are getting a pretty good representation of the modern consensus view. Of course, if I have caught your attention, I'd rather send you book recommendations that argue these points further and with much more detail. But for an internet discussion, it is more important to summarize, and hence, a Wikipedia article is adequate to introduce the concept, it seems to me.

Eaglesway wrote:The fact that the scholars who would support apostolic authorship are in the minority is not an authoritative indicator that the majority view is the correct one.

Certainly. But we should take a majority like this seriously, and engage with their evidence and reasoning. Simply denying that they could be right about anything is...well, it's denial. And that's not healthy.

I do not think that it is impossible to be a Christian or to have faith and at the same time be realistic about the authorship of these books.

One thing to consider - while I do not believe John was written by an apostle named John, I do think it's reasonable to assume that this gospel came out of a community that was founded by such an apostle - and perhaps the material that made up the book began with this apostle's teachings. This is how an oral tradition works, and we need to keep in mind that the apostles were likely all (with perhaps the exception of Matthew) illiterate.

Eaglesway wrote:The link you posted for me about the virgn birth was the Wiki on pseudography of Peter 1 & 2, and contained nothing on the virgin birth.

Must have fudged that - apologies. Let me try again - here is the article I wrote about the Nativity stories.

Eaglesway wrote:If you do not believe the scriptures are reliable

Not an accurate way of describing the way I think about the scriptures. I have written at great length on how I do think about the scriptures on my blog - especially in the series I've been linking in this thread.

Eaglesway wrote:Do you believe in His death burial and resurrection?

Certainly. The way I think of this - particularly resurrection - may not match the way you do, but I absolutely believe in resurrection. I plan to write at length on the subject in "Book 2" of "Judaism and the Mystical Christ", but for now: I believe that Jesus was resurrected into God. I believe that his disciples experienced his presence afterwards. Negatively: I think that when many Christians say "resurrection", what they really mean is "resuscitation", and I think these views impoverish the reality of resurrection.

Eaglesway wrote:I believe that all will be ultimately reconciled to YHWH through the Lord Jesus Christ, His teaching, His Way, and His life, to the glory of God the Father.

Not a bad thing to believe in - and one a belief I have much hope in as well.

To the "bouncer" comment - I would say, to clarify, that I think it is possible that some are being drawn to Jesus without even knowing Jesus' name. In other words - it's not salvation by syllables. It's salvation through the person.

Don't have time to read the other two comments at the moment, but wanted to get to the last comment:
randylkemp wrote:But is Father Learning To Love advocating pluralism? That's what I like to know from him.

It really depends on what you mean by "pluralism". We have to define the term. So, in short, yes - I'm all for pluralism. Now, do I mean that I think "all religions are the same"? Certainly not. Try to think of it this way: would you say that all languages are the same? It is certainly true that all languages have basic structures that are similar to each other, that quite often there are words that are nearly the same between langauge (parallel words, we might say), and that they are all capable of communicating the same ideas if we know how to translate well. But quite often, different languages draw out different nuances. And quite often, trying to translate a concept between languages results in things being "lost in translation".

I find that Buddhism has helped me to think about consciousness in a way that Christianity never really did. I find that Buddhism has helped me to think about how important it is to "know thyself" - and to understand how I shape what I see, and I need to be aware of this so that I will not continue to block out things I do not want to see. And Buddhism has helped me to see things about Jesus that I never really saw before, as I mentioned before. But Buddhism and Christianity are certainly not the same. I will always be Christian - to suggest that I could be anything else would be as silly as pretending that I could somehow remove my "American-ness". Can I grow through Buddhism in a way that many of my old Christian friends would not recognize me, in a sense? Yes - but I'm sure that if I were to begin to hang out exclusively in Buddhist circles (something I do not wish to do - though I love Buddhists and want to spend more time with them), they would "smell the Christian on me", as it were.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Holy-Fool-P-Zombie » Mon Jun 15, 2015 11:58 am

If you go back to my original question, I said this:

Since Wiki gives many definitions, let's run with the Got Questions definition:

"Religious pluralism generally refers to the belief in two or more religious worldviews as being equally valid or acceptable"


Let me put my question this way. If Christ never lived, died and was resurrected, in the body of the man Jesus...or if the man Jesus was never born, died and resurrected...would we all reach the same spiritual end - regardless of what religion - or lack of religion - we followed?
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Mon Jun 15, 2015 1:01 pm

randylkemp wrote:If you go back to my original question, I said this:

Since Wiki gives many definitions, let's run with the Got Questions definition:

"Religious pluralism generally refers to the belief in two or more religious worldviews as being equally valid or acceptable"


Let me put my question this way. If Christ never lived, died and was resurrected, in the body of the man Jesus...or if the man Jesus was never born, died and resurrected...would we all reach the same spiritual end - regardless of what religion - or lack of religion - we followed?

I feel almost like I have to respond to this with another question: did Jesus have to die? (More specifically, in the form of an execution, as opposed to from old age.)

If you're curious, I've presented my own views on the atonement here.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Holy-Fool-P-Zombie » Mon Jun 15, 2015 1:18 pm

Well, here's my problem here. Suppose I go to Patheos, which is a good site on faith. They do interview Christian authors, on books they have written. Now I have read many book interviews there, along with the questions and answers. None has ever said things like:

    "Let me ask this question, in regards to your question."
    "It depends on what you mean..."
    "read my article here for the answer to..."
    Etc.

The author probably wouldn't have the interview published, nor would they be invited back to Patheos, for any future interviews. And probably the same would happen in other Christian and secular sites, interviewing Christian authors. So I'll leave things like this. If you ever get your book available on Amazon and get at least 31 people to rate it and write reviews (i.e. the minimum number for statistical relevance), I'll read through the reviews and see what the collective rating is. If it gets 4 out of 5 stars in ratings and I like the reviews - I might then order it.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Mon Jun 15, 2015 2:56 pm

randylkemp wrote:Well, here's my problem here. Suppose I go to Patheos, which is a good site on faith. They do interview Christian authors, on books they have written. Now I have read many book interviews there, along with the questions and answers. None has ever said things like:

    "Let me ask this question, in regards to your question."
    "It depends on what you mean..."
    "read my article here for the answer to..."
    Etc.

Not good logic. It is certainly necessary to define terms when language has been so confused as in our day. And Jesus certainly answered questions with questions. And if I have written at great length on a subject, do you expect me to do all that work all over again when I can link to it?
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Holy-Fool-P-Zombie » Mon Jun 15, 2015 3:05 pm

It is good logic. I only have so much time in a day. I'm actually looking for short and to the point summary answers. You know. The Reader's Digest or Cliff Notes variety. The kind authors being interviewed give. Or the tape recording, telling Jim of Mission Impossible, what the next hour of the original TV show is about.



My time I devote to important things, like

    Studying languages (i.e. French, Spanish, Portuguese and German)
    Reading a good comic book (i.e. Marvel and DC)
    Watching the BBC News
    Watching some classic comedy (i.e. Laurel and Hardy, the Three Stooges, and the Marx Brothers)

All these things are more important to me, then following links of an unknown author. So for an unknown author to grab my attention, he or she must first grab others attention. Hence, my minimum requirement. I must see it on Amazon, with 31+ reviews and ratings, and an overall favorable rating (of course, the author could get that many friends and relatives to rate something and write reviews).
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Eaglesway » Mon Jun 15, 2015 4:30 pm

In Parallel Sayings Richard Hooper usesnthe words "most" or "many" when tied to "scholars" as if inherently authoritative. Take this example....

Many New Testament scholars, for instance, believe the apostle Paul's out of body experiences were brought on by epileptic seizures- which, in turn, were brought on bychemical shifts within the brain, William James pointed out a century ago that even alcohol can induce mystical seizures".... and then goes on to explain brain chemical reactions in the brain..... as if such absolute speculation could have any weight. It is more likely Paul was just intensely and intimately involved with the Ultimate Reality, the Lord Jesus, but in any case- what scholarship is there to confirm such an outrageous statement? None.

In another place he states that "Certain groups of scholars, such as the Jesus Seminar, suggest that as few as 18% of all the words attributed to Jesus in the canonical Gospels came from him, and even these are not in their original form." The list of these kinds of assertions is long already, and mostly just as vague and unsupportable.

Over the next few chapters, however, the author bulds a pretty intricate Budhist/Hindu perspective using the sayings of Jesus (which are only 18% certified ;o)

I have only read about 100 pages so far, but the book is making what I consider to be a polite but blatant attempt to disembowel the gospel and interpret it through a Gnostic perspective that mytholizes(? :D ) every supernatural foundation of Christian belief and re-interprets the words of Jesus(the ones out of the 18% that work for him I suppose) into a Budhist/Hindu concept.

While I agree that Jesus' words do need to be looked at from an mystical mind-set, I found Hooper making generalized statements about Jesus that I thought revealed an intellectual prejudice that went beyong objectivity- but resembled the same kind of attitude that westerners have in reverse. Jesus is neither western or eastern. He is unique. :)

It appears( he says so at least) that a major influence in his turn from Christianity was an experience where he asked a pastor, as a seminary student, if he really believed an Indian person who grew up Hindu and never heard of Jesus would go to hell. When answered in the affirmative- he made a huge turn towards eastern mystics- WHICH I TOTALLY UNDERSTAND. Too bad he wasnot introduced to the true gospel at some point.

Primarily, I just disagree with his conclusions and definitely feel they presented in a strongly slanted way, not just in a pluralist direction, but essentially reducing all mysticism to a Hindu spirituality carrying a Budhist ethic. The book is an outright debunk of western Christian religion-WHICH I HAVE NO PROBLEM WITH ( :lol: )- but it is also an antithetical presentation to what any believer in the risen Christ believes, including many of what I consider the intrinsicly true foundations of the teachings of Jesus Christ. At such a point the pluralism disappates into an outright assault on the fundamental faith of "Christ crucified" (imo).

Hooper does not believe in the virgin birth or the resurrection, nor even a shadow of integrity in the histories or epistles contained in the Bible. It is all parabolic mythology or outright junk. In my opinion it is an anti-Christian piece of literature.

Of course, I am not saying this is your view, fatherlearningtolove, in toto, and I have enjoyed many aspects of the 6 chapters of your blog I have read and will continue to read..... but you recommended the book, and it is an answer to some things I was wondering reading the blog. That's why I asked where you were coming from regarding Jesus as Lord of All....... I had no desire to offend or go on the offensive, just to clarify.

I think certain aspects of budhism are beautiful. As wisdom, there is much in it to be gained and I have always seen the similarities in areas because I studied Budhism and Krishna consciousness before I had my meeting with the ultimate reality and He revealed Himself as Christ crucified and called me to follow. Not everyone gets to experience that, but I did.

But I do see the cross as a WAY. That is how He revealed Himself to me. His way of self denial and the mystical aspects of His being the I AM- radiance of the Father's glory and exact representation of His nature, as well as the work of spiritual seeking and growing- have been largely cut out of western Christianity and I have said for many years Jesus was probably more like a guru than any contemporary preacher or teacher I have seen- and definitely a mystic(for me, THE mystic)- but even with all of that, the core difference for me is His death, resurrection and ascenscion above all heavens, bearing the name above every name is undeniable to me- being, during my meeting with ultimate reality, integrated within the cells of my being so to speak.

Of course I would not expect anyone to take my word for that, but I do say it is true.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Tue Jun 16, 2015 10:18 am

randylkemp wrote:I only have so much time in a day.

Me too. Why is your time more important than mine? I've already given much of my time to you....

randylkemp wrote:I'm actually looking for short and to the point summary answers. You know. The Reader's Digest or Cliff Notes variety. The kind authors being interviewed give. Or the tape recording, telling Jim of Mission Impossible, what the next hour of the original TV show is about.

I've pretty much done this with you already - if you want more, read my blog. But your questioning began to smell more and more like heresy hunting, and that's when I decide to use evasive maneuvers - because I realize that it takes time to understand what I'm trying to explain, and to try to give short summaries would be selling it short already. But if you're going to condemn me based on a short summary, I might as well simply leave you scratching your head.

I have other important things to use my time for as well. Yes, I have spent quite a big deal of my time working on writings - writings I have not received a single penny for, by the way, and really not much more than heartburn (with an occasional compliment) in the way of reaction from readers. But I have 4 children and a lovely wife, I read quite a bit, watch a lot of documentaries, and occasionally "waste" time watching entertainment or reading comic books as well. So it seems a bit arrogant of you to pretend that your list is more important than mine.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Holy-Fool-P-Zombie » Tue Jun 16, 2015 1:39 pm

If you want to be a writer, you need to follow the rules and conventions that writers, publishers, marketers, etc., follow. For books on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, etc., it means self publishing or getting a publisher. And a agent - if possible. But you know what? From the book description and writer bio on Amazon, I know exactly where they are coming from. Same goes for author interviews. The interviewer asks direct questions and the author answers them. Or an author goes on a speaking tour and gives talks. And the author answers audience questions. You have to market yourself. And if you wish folks to read your blog, then you need to provide relevant and meaningful content, share stuff on social media, work with SEO, etc.

I'm just a mere consumer. But a consumer with advertisers, social media, other media (i.e. TV, movie, radio, magazine), etc., competing like they do, for my attention. So if you wish to reach me and other consumers, you need to do what other authors do. Answer questions like they do, give summaries like they do - let everyone know where you are "really" coming from. It's all very simple, really. It's sometimes hard to implement.

If you embrace a form of pluralism, I won't condemn you. Or any other ism you might follow. Since I hung around for years in academia, taking literature and philosophy courses, I have encountered just about every ism under the sun. But I always knew where the literature writers and philosophers were "really" coming from. And I have hung around for years with folks from the Ute, Ojibwa, and Lakota tribes. I have gone where few white folks have traveled. I've participated in their ceremonies. I hung around their medicine men and women. I've hung around "real" holy people from India - not the kind that "advertise" or charge money. I never condemned them for heresy or anything else. And they never refused me hospitality or joining their spiritual endeavors.
Last edited by Holy-Fool-P-Zombie on Tue Jun 16, 2015 3:33 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Gabe Grinstead » Tue Jun 16, 2015 2:31 pm

If I may interject... I don't think Randy is being abrasive, but trying to provide you with insight to increase your readership, if you so desire.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Holy-Fool-P-Zombie » Tue Jun 16, 2015 3:01 pm

Gabe Grinstead wrote:If I may interject... I don't think Randy is being abrasive, but trying to provide you with insight to increase your readership, if you so desire.

That is correct, Gabe. Here's another thing I never revealed. I live about five minutes away from the National Headquarters of the Theosophical Society. I have a lifetime membership and have been a member for years. Not because I believe in their teachings or philosophy. But because they have the best library on religion and philosophy around. Whenever I watched a speaker - live or by video on the web - I knew exactly where they were coming from. The society doesn't sponsor or permit debates during the presentations - only asking questions. And to be a member, you just need to state you are in accord with their 3 objects:

    To form a nucleus of the universal brotherhood of humanity, without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste or color.
    To encourage the comparative study of religion, philosophy and science.
    To investigate unexplained laws of nature and the powers latent in humanity.

The first 2 are easy to embrace. The third one I can also side with, as long as scientific methodology, double blind studies and statistical analysis, are used. And folks can see current webcasts and recorded webcasts free. Now folks in the Christian churches might condemn me for heresy for joining them - even if my reasons are to use their extensive library collection.

And for examples of spiritual writings on Amazon, look at:


I know these authors personally and they are good friends of mine. I have been in ceremony with Quentin. I have hung around Dhyanyogi, while he was still living. And Shuddhaanandaa's work with the poor in India, would rival that of Mother Theresa.

Hanging around academia (i.e. College of DuPage) and the Theosophical Society, has exposed me to all kinds of isms. For Theosophists, they usually advocate some form of esotericism. And if they embrace the Christian tradition, it's usually some form of esotericism or gnosticism. As a former academic, I'm more concerned whether any position is logically coherent and can be logically defended. In the forum here, there are rules of engagement. Folks are protected to some degree, by those rules and the admins and moderators. I personally follow those set up in academia. But if someone didn't want any flack or heat, then they really shouldn't open a thread up, in the first place. Or to state a popular saying:
If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Wed Jun 17, 2015 5:46 am

Listen - my problem here is that internet critics are some of the most demanding and lazy people out there. I put so much work into my writing already, and have gotten nothing back from it. Not a dime. Occasionally I get a compliment, but more often I get people who want to argue. I'm so, so tired of arguing. And if I smell a heresy hunt, I'm not going to even try to lure you in to read my work - you're not worth the time, if you're a heresy hunter. That's a headache I don't need in my life - and I know because I've had too many of them already. I think I've given plenty in this thread - don't like it, don't read. Or if it makes you curious, go read.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Wed Jun 17, 2015 5:55 am

The problem I see in internet discussion groups is that all too often, people only participate in them because they like to argue. It gives them some sort of sick twisted sadistic pleasure. So they go around looking for things to disagree with - and this causes them no pain (at least none that is immediately visible) because they are arguing with "anonymous" strangers. So they don't lose friendships over this addiction. And it's a consumer mentality - they don't really care to try to understand where anyone is coming from, they just want to disagree and "prove" themselves to be right. I can't tell you how much heartburn this mentality has caused me. It's so, so hard to build up a readership base these days, because publishing companies only care about people who have already done so. You have to do all the work yourself. And let's be honest - I am not a salesman. I have never been a good salesman - I actually tried it one summer when I was in college, and I was terrible at it. It's because I actually take no for an answer. But I'm good at writing. If I had other people who were my salesmen - people who liked my writing enough to promote it for me - I could have a good readership base. But right now I have to self-promote, and it sucks. Especially because all anyone wants to do is argue with me. I've had it. I'm not arguing any more. It's too much trouble. Go read my blog, or don't - it's up to you. But I will not be drawn into an argument.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Holy-Fool-P-Zombie » Wed Jun 17, 2015 5:56 am

fatherlearningtolove wrote:Listen - my problem here is that internet critics are some of the most demanding and lazy people out there. I put so much work into my writing already, and have gotten nothing back from it. Not a dime. Occasionally I get a compliment, but more often I get people who want to argue. I'm so, so tired of arguing. And if I smell a heresy hunt, I'm not going to even try to lure you in to read my work - you're not worth the time, if you're a heresy hunter. That's a headache I don't need in my life - and I know because I've had too many of them already. I think I've given plenty in this thread - don't like it, don't read. Or if it makes you curious, go read.

No, I won't read it. And that would go for many folks, if you don't tell them where you are coming from. And it all depends on what you mean by heresy and who's on the other side. For Christians embracing exclusivism and traditional hell teachings,folks here would be embracing heresy - by embracing universalism. As far as arguments go, I usually refrain - unless someone attacks me first. It's the martial arts philosophy of aikido and jujitsu. And I can guarantee that you won't be presenting any position here, that I haven't already encountered in academia or at the Theosophical Society.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Wed Jun 17, 2015 6:09 am

randylkemp wrote:No, I won't read it.

That's absolutely fine with me. But don't try to manipulatively guilt me into walking into what smells like a trap to me.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Holy-Fool-P-Zombie » Wed Jun 17, 2015 6:14 am

fatherlearningtolove wrote:
randylkemp wrote:No, I won't read it.

That's absolutely fine with me. But don't try to manipulatively guilt me into walking into what smells like a trap to me.

It sounds more like delusions or paranoia to me. If you want to know how Eagles Way, myself or others respond, then study how we engage folks in other discussions. It's called profiling. If you do it well, then you can almost predict how someone will respond. It's just the science of psychology.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby fatherlearningtolove » Wed Jun 17, 2015 6:30 am

randylkemp wrote:It sounds more like delusions or paranoia to me.

Have you ever written a blog and tried to promote it - specifically a blog about controversial religious subjects? If you had, you'd know what it's like to constantly be hounded by OCD types who want to prove to the world that they are right and you are wrong. It's not paranoia - it's what I've lived.
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Re: Judaism and the Mystical Christ

Postby Holy-Fool-P-Zombie » Wed Jun 17, 2015 6:35 am

fatherlearningtolove wrote:
randylkemp wrote:It sounds more like delusions or paranoia to me.

Have you ever written a blog and tried to promote it - specifically a blog about controversial religious subjects? If you had, you'd know what it's like to constantly be hounded by OCD types who want to prove to the world that they are right and you are wrong. It's not paranoia - it's what I've lived.

If you look at my profile and click About, it will show you the blog I have written for years. Normally I write about technology and social media. But I have also written about spiritual topics - some controversial. But you notice that each post is tagged with keywords,for folks to find them via SEO. And I promote them on social media channels (i.e. Twitter with about 30 K followers right now). And the best way to prove you are right is to take literature and philosophy courses, at your local, in-district junior college. After a few literature and philosophy positional papers under your belt, you can hand most naysayers.
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