Matthew 5:21b-22 (from the Sermon on the Mount): You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘You shall not murder,[a] and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment
How, as spiritual people, may we circulate positive models of peace and justice, to counteract the dreadful images of violence that saturate our society and media?
An unbalanced guy posts on social media pictures of himself in military garb. He makes use, indiscriminately, of Islamic extremist slogans. Some reports (rumors or reality) say that he has ties to white supremacist organizations. He boasts in a Youtube comment that he is going to become a school shooter. (See article link below).
Alienated and angry, the twisted mind will feed upon images of supposed glory, as if hatching the plot to become a superhero. These poisonous images involve guns and slaughter. The specter of violence, and glory through shooting, latches onto one’s aggressive impulses. Full-blown fantasies gather steam. The mind rehearses scenarios of punishment against enemies; the slaughtered attest to one’s triumph. The imagination, twisted by violence, styles one as a hero who crusades against wrongdoing.
Activists may take to the streets to get guns out of the hands of reckless people; the US contains 4% of the global population and 40% or so of all guns. Others may reflect on how to develop role models for a peaceful society and counter-images to exhibit just ways of life.
Our religious and spiritual traditions could offer us a rich repository of such images and role models. If we do not find them in our holy books and traditions, let’s create them ourselves. Or let’s create them regardless. Such positive images and stories, of peaceful and honest ways, may operate like medicines to dissolve anger and fear, and to counteract the poison that enters the human imagination, when alienated people feed on violence and fantasies that associate glory with guns.
See this article: Florida Shooting Article NY Times
An essential attribute of the lightworker, quite often, is a willingness to explore and a commitment to trust one’s own direct access to spiritual intuition or knowledge. The phenomenon of channeling — which is repudiated by some Christians, as being untrustworthy or even of the devil– is embraced by others. (For more on this, see: Lightworker : Definition, Controversies and Historical Jesus – Lightworker).
Some channels claim to channel Jesus himself. Others call upon Jesus for protection, while they channel.
I came across an interesting reference to channeling in the name of Jesus Christ, during a recent interview with Jim McCarty. McCarty was one of the circle responsible for channeling the Law of One, also known as the Ra Material. Kevin Moore, of the Moore Show, is putting on a documentary about channeling. His interview with McCarty is thought provoking. (See: Moore Show).
Alongside Jim McCarty, another in the channeling circle, responsible for the Ra Material, was Carla L. Rueckert, who had been married to Jim until she passed away a couple of years ago.
According to Jim McCarty, in this interview, Carla held that it is quite easy to channel, since many spiritual entities are willing to make contact and to establish communication with a person who is open and receptive. However, not all entities or spirits are trustworthy. In order to test the spirits, Carla used to ask three times, “Do you come in the name of Jesus Christ?”. If a spirit could pass muster by this test, she would make herself receptive to the spiritual message.
For Carla, as reported by her husband Jim, the name of Jesus Christ signified her highest spiritual commitment and ideals; he speaks about this topic, in the interview with Kevin Moore, from minute 19:30 to 22:15–see link below. Jesus Christ embodies a spiritual ideal and example, for which the disciple is willing to live or to die. Thus, as a channel and Christian disciple, Carla maintained her faith in Jesus Christ and even solicited the approval, as to channelled contents, from clergy of the Episcopal Church to which she belonged.
Interestingly, the test to which Carla put the spirits, by asking whether they come in the name of Jesus Christ, is reminiscent of the prayer and spiritual practices of the Desert Fathers and Mothers in late antiquity. In their asceticism and solitary prayer, they would confront various spirits and test them in the name of Jesus Christ. It was the name of Jesus Christ which could banish even the devil.
See, for instance, the Life of St. Antony the Great by Athanasius, ch. 40: “Once a demon exceeding high appeared with pomp, and dared to say, “I am the power of God and I am Providence, what dost thou wish that I shall give thee?” But I then so much the more breathed upon him, and spoke the name of Christ, and set about to smite him. And I seemed to have smitten him, and forthwith he, big as he was, together with all his demons, disappeared at the name of Christ.” (You may find the Life of St Antony the Great in PDF: Life of St Antony).
Channeling, for some channels, is not so different from ancient mystical prayer.
Here is a copy of Book One of the Ra Material: The Law of One : Book One.
Gospel of John #38 : John 6: 52b-53; “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” 53 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you.John 6: 60-64 60 When many of his disciples heard it, they said, “This teaching is difficult; who can accept it?” 61 But Jesus, being aware that his disciples were complaining about it, said to them, “Does this offend you? 62 Then what if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? 63 It is the spirit that gives life; the flesh is useless. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. 64 But among you there are some who do not believe.”
Who can accept that Jesus (infused with the Spirit of God) should die and his flesh and blood be ingested by the disciples? Or that we, in imitation of Jesus, must “die” to the flesh, ourselves, in order to be reborn in the Spirit? How may we understand this death and rebirth, a doctrine that lies at the center of Christian spirituality?
I will discuss this death/rebirth dynamic, first, as it pertains to our spiritual lives and secondly, as it pertains to the life of Jesus, who models the way to God.
Death and Rebirth in our Spiritual Lives
Our own death to the self can be experienced as a rebirth into joy and wellbeing, particularly if the self that needs to die is constructed of painful tendencies and destructive personality dynamics.
Many are consumed by self-criticism, for instance, which leads to depression. We seek that “perfect” life and a fully meritorious way of being in the world. The vulnerability of Life seems like a rude error. Denying the prospect of suffering, failure, injustice, or struggle, we desperately try to create a facade of perfection, which becomes a counterfeit self, a false identity. (See this article: Perfectionism and Depression)
The false self– which is enslaved to counterfeit values (such as criticism and perfectionism)– can lead to death. Where there’s excessive criticism, which is neither constructive nor conducive to growth, how can we love? Once we are impeded in love, we lose joy and well-being –which, in turn, can make us sick and die in the soul. The soul’s death leads to disease in the body.
If we are courageous enough to allow the false self to die– and its perfectionism and criticism to be demolished– we may enter more fully into the life of God (who is Life and Love). The death of the false self may hurt; one may even mourn this imposter once he or she is gone. New Life takes the place of death, however, a LIFE that is without boundaries. We then honor LIFE itself in whatever guise that Life takes and in whatever form that Life shows up. In short, the death of the false self liberates our lives so that we may be taken up in Spirit–in a kind of ascension of our own–to experience life in God.
The Death of Jesus
As this passage in John indicates, to accept the difficult teaching (that Jesus must die and be consumed) is to honor the Son of Man, while the one who does not believe (namely, Judas) betrays him.
Difficult teaching: Jesus Christ claims that one must ingest his very body as bread and drink his blood, in order to discover the life of God within oneself. This suggestion of cannibalism (see previous post in this series #37) is offensive to his audience. Death is implied as a preliminary to this feast.
If Jesus is merely a human being, then he commits blasphemy (as his accusers suppose) for his claim of being not just a prophet (like Moses whose people received bread in the desert) but instead of the same substance as the Father God, i.e. “the heavenly bread”. Jesus claims union with God which would be offensive for a mere mortal (according to his accusers).
If Jesus is in fact divine, then it is difficult to understand how the divine (who is Spirit) must die like a human being in order for his flesh to be consumed. What a bizarre notion! That one should feed on the body of God and drink his blood. Gods do not normally have bodies.
Death of God as a Model for our own Spiritual Death and Rebirth
Consider, though, what we gain when we ingest the body and blood of Christ. The false self having fallen away, we feed upon an expanded awareness of divine Life as a spiritual reality, beyond the boundaries of the flesh or the ego (the false self).
As Rumi the poet says, the thing that seems most bizarre and difficult may be a guide from beyond to be welcomed, the Messenger who brings a gift to the guest house. In the guesthouse, which is our hearts, we relish the joy of Life however Life shows up. Such is Life in the Spirit: abundant and omnipresent.
The Guest House
This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice.
meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.
Be grateful for whatever comes.
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
— Jellaludin Rumi,
Here is a guest post from Pablo, who may be reached at: email@example.com — on the theme of: being a Lightworker in the Spirit of Jesus. If you would like to contribute your own post on this theme, please contact me. Thanks!
Hello fellow lightworker!
My name is Pablo. I’d like to tell you a bit about myself!
I have risen above difficult circumstances, having responded to my calling as a lightworker!
I am 22 now (a late bloomer). I have awoken later than most. Through the power and will of the Holy Ghost, I have been taught many lessons. I have learned many things about both light working and the darker sides of life. Through faith and love, I practice light working, and I try to connect and manifest the will of the Holy Ghost in my life.
For a long time, I first hand experienced much suffering, due to trauma. I was victim to dissociation and twisted patterns of thought. It took many attempts to exit the darkness that enshrouded me.
First, I cried out to Christ for deliverance to save me. Then, after a period of practicing faith, I decided to take things into my own hands. I ended up becoming a spiritual warrior for the light and what was once darkness catapulted me into the light art that is called light-working. Lightworking chose me, which freed me from the difficulties I knew.
The Holy Ghost, in my eyes, is an orb of pure energy that divinely guides us. Since all gifts are given according to the good for all concerned, some are given the gift of discernment between light and dark energies. I was given a keen sense of such discernment. I am able to tell if people align themselves with the light side or the dark.
The best gifts of all come from the Spirit. Just as the hand helps the foot, so one person’s gift will help another’s. Since Christ cannot be divided and all gifts come from Him, when we all use our gifts rightly, we create a transparent fine-tuned platform. Using the gifts and supernatural abilities that the Christ gave us, we move into a telepathic realm filled with the good news and impenetrable Christ light.
Through love, faith and lightworking, assisted by the Holy Ghost, we can uplift the world and His name and, as a consequence, solve social problems in harmony with Yahweh God. Once we band together and walk in the Holy Ghost, keeping His commandments, we will expand the kingdom of God naturally, and His will in turn will be done on this earth.
Do not despair, if you are going through difficult times. Join in light-working – through good deeds – and like me, you will come out of despair and trauma and into the light of love.
Gospel of John #37 : Text of passage (6:60-71) is reproduced below
After Jesus claims in John 6 that his own body (flesh) and his blood must be ingested, in order for people to gain eternal life, many are aghast at this claim. John’s Gospel likely reflects the charges, against early Christians, of human sacrifice, combined with cannibalism.
(Reproduced below is an excerpt from an article about this stereotyped accusation, which was directed against Christians in the early period. The counter-accusation, in turn, alleged the same vulgarity of pagans in their religious rituals. You will find, too, a link to the entire article by J. Rives, a Roman historian. See also the link to a contemporary article about religious rituals and cannibalism).
The Gospel counters this charge by the suggestion that the life of God is Spirit not flesh (v.63). Thus, cannibalism does not pertain to God. Because Jesus embodies God, he will not die but instead ascend (v. 62). Furthermore, those who believe that Jesus is the Son of God, based on his works (e.g. miracles) and teachings, will ascertain the truth of his words, which are filled with spirit and life (v.63).
Only a few can understand this strange claim about Jesus’s stature and mission, which (to outsiders) entails cannibalism. Those who do understand that Jesus’s life is divine, and his mission bestowed directly by God, continue to follow him. For, as Peter recognizes, “You have the words of eternal life” (v.68b).
The idea that a man’s own body must be eaten — as flesh and blood — does sound bizarre and repulsive. It is only if we accept the theological claim of the Gospel of John that the idea may become palatable. For by “eating” the bread of heaven, and drinking the blood of God, we do not eat human flesh like cannibals. Instead, we partake directly in God’s Spirit, which offers freedom, eternal life, and Love.
Question: If you were among the original audience for this speech, what would your reaction have been?
Early Christians accused of human sacrifice and cannibalism
HUMAN SACRIFICE AMONG PAGANS AND CHRISTIANS By J. RIVES
(excerpt, introduction for complete article see: Human Sacrifice Pagans and Early Christians through JSTOR — copy may be downloaded for free through public library databases)
In Minucius Felix’ dialogue on the value of Christianity, written in the late second or early third century C.E.,1 the character Caecilius, who presents the anti-Christian arguments, recounts a story about their initiations, ‘a story as loathsome as it is well known’: after the initiate has struck a baby concealed under a covering of flour, those present drink the blood from its wounds and so seal their union (Oct. 9.5). Later in the dialogue, Octavius, the defender of Christianity, refutes this slander. The alleged crime, he argues, is so terrible that ‘no one could believe it except the sort of person who would attempt it’. He goes on to point out that pagans, not Christians, are the ones who practise actual human sacrifice. He supports his claim by citing specific examples: the Africans who used to sacrifice their children to Saturn, the Taurians and the Egyptian Busiris who sacrificed foreigners, the Gauls, and lastly the Romans themselves, who in the past would bury alive two Greeks and two Gauls and who in his own day sacrifice men to Jupiter Latiaris (Oct. 30. I) .
Although Caecilius describes the story he tells about the Christians as a notafabula, it is somewhat difficult to determine exactly how widely known it was. Virtually every Christian apologist between i so and 200 C.E. refers to the charge, but the evidence from the pagan side is much less extensive.2 After investigating the activities of Christians in Bithynia, the younger Pliny notes in his report to Trajan that they gather together ‘to take food, food that is ordinary enough and harmless’ (Ep. X.96.7). The appended qualification suggests that in the i iOS Pliny had already heard some version of these stories, and took them seriously enough to make inquiries.3 Some years later, Fronto had heard enough about the charges to elaborate on them in a speech.4 Later still, the citizens of Lugdunum who instituted a persecution of local Christians in I77 C.E. were apparently convinced of their truth, since they tried thro torture to make one woman confess to such deeds (Eus., HE v. I.26). although the evidence is scanty, there is enough to suggest that at least some pagans both knew and believed these stories.
See Link: Cargo Cults Accused of Cannibalism
John 6: 60- 71
60 When many of his disciples heard it, they said, “This teaching is difficult; who can accept it?” 61 But Jesus, being aware that his disciples were complaining about it, said to them, “Does this offend you? 62 Then what if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? 63 It is the spirit that gives life; the flesh is useless. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. 64 But among you there are some who do not believe.” For Jesus knew from the first who were the ones that did not believe, and who was the one that would betray him. 65 And he said, “For this reason I have told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted by the Father.”
66 Because of this many of his disciples turned back and no longer went about with him. 67 So Jesus asked the twelve, “Do you also wish to go away?” 68 Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom can we go? You have the words of eternal life. 69 We have come to believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.” 70 Jesus answered them, “Did I not choose you, the twelve? Yet one of you is a devil.” 71 He was speaking of Judas son of Simon Iscariot, for he, though one of the twelve, was going to betray him.
We, the Arcturians offers an interpretation of Psalm 23, which I will summarize here. (For the full explanation, see the book: We, the Arcturians Book Amazon). As I see it, the interpretation is mild, fairly adaptable to conventional pieties, though with a few new flavors.
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want: This shepherd takes us into the Light.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: The color green represents the heart chakra. We are to open our hearts to love.
He leadeth me beside the still waters: Our hearts become still in love.
He restoreth my soul: Karmic debets are released. We move toward the Light.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: Our lower consciousness causes us to fear death. With God’s protection, we understand that death is an illusion; once fear is transcended, we live according to a deeper and more expansive new Life.
Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: The enemies eat with us because we no longer fear them. God’s generosity extends towards all.
Thou anointest my head with oil: The anointing is the sign that we are children of God who belong to the Risen savior.
My cup runneth over: Abundance is promised, after our initiation along the paths of God. Since our consciousness has shifted, we no longer experience the world as a place of deprivation; rather, the world overflows like a cup of prosperity.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: Peace and joy are our birthright, which we discover through this anointing.
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever: There are many mansions in God’s house. All of us have the chance to live there in peace and joy.
This Acturian interpretation of Psalm 23 ends with the the following salutation:
“Adonai, our beloved children of Light. We, the Arcturians, do bid you farewell from the northwest quadrant of the universe, and from the Most Radiant One.”