Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Bob » Sat Apr 02, 2022 11:58 am

Ichthus77 wrote:The Jewish scribes were too particular about making perfect copies for your claims about losing their knowledge to hold any weight (plus compare with your inversion with the bit on what philologists would say on original words—words you claim to say we need, have lost, then instead you choose late distortions!!). Any discrepancies among early copies don’t effect doctrine. Applying that standard to other historical texts would toss a lot of history. The best way to keep history real is to not rewrite it. Difficult enough as humans are its authors… why accept late distortions??

I’m afraid you are off on a tangent, Biblical Hebrew is a reconstructed language, or a language representing what medieval grammarians thought it had sounded like some two millennia before their time. From about the 6th century BCE until the Middle Ages, many Jews spoke a related Semitic language, Aramaic. Several dialects of Aramaic are still spoken today. It subsequently branched into several Neo-Aramaic languages that are more widely spoken in modern times. From the 2nd century CE until the revival of Hebrew as a spoken language circa 1880, Hebrew served as a literary and official language and as the Judaic language of prayer. The Aramaic languages are now considered endangered, since several dialects are used mainly by the older generations.

My philologist friend points out that reading is one thing, which is a slow process in comparison, and when the words are spoken in a colloquial manner, it is another thing altogether. If you travel to a foreign country having taken a certain language in school, you notice certain words, but it is the context and the colloquial meaning that gives a statement its true meaning with all of its nuances that flow with it. Even when speaking normally, there are at least 4 levels of communication: The factual level, which is dedicated to the factual content; what is being informed about. The self-revelation level, which is dedicated to what the sender reveals about himself. The relationship level, which conveys the relationship; and the appeal level, which serves to prompt someone to do something. These levels take some getting used to when learning to use a language properly. We tend to blend this all out when reading narrative or conversation in scripture.

Ichthus77 wrote:The contradiction you accept (gnostic antichrist) isn’t a matter of best translation. This is like believing Abraham Lincoln did not physically sign a physical copy of the emancipation proclamation on an actual day in actual history, and that it did not go into actual effect (though at first a small one). What would drive such a distorted view of history? What would motivate one to rewrite history?

The Bible isn’t history in the way we use the word today, but “enhanced” stories, based on fact, which is similar to legend, but used to build a “family tree” to give Israel and identity. As I say, it is quite sophisticated, but Abraham Lincoln died in 1865, that is a mere 157 years ago. The New Testament ends about 2000 years ago. The Old Testament is probably put together around 539 BCE, and the flood (which is a real event) is probably the result of the end of the younger dryas and the end of the last great ice-age, which was around 11,600 years ago.

You see, taking the evidence that geology and archaeology have found, we are constructing a more reliable historical record, but in the course of this, everything is growing older. This is also in keeping with the megalithic structures we are finding all over the world, some under water now, but during the ice age above water. There is so much history in the world, that the small section of “history” that the Bible offers shows much of it to be legend. This isn’t a problem as long as one accepts it, but the spiritual message is between the lines, not in dates and figures. So, your accusation of me “rewriting history” is a little off centre, to put it politely.

What you have also done, which many do, is that you have adopted the interpretation of some Church authorities of Gnosticism and simply called it "anti-Christian" without examining the evidence. Mysticism did not die out when the Church tried to eradicate it, and throughout Church history some views have been revised, so that some supposed heretics have been restored and are revered today. Keep in mind that some evangelical Christians reject the Catholic Church but refer to the writings of the Catholic Fathers to condemn aspects of Christianity they consider heretical. Most of the time they have not even read these works but have heard from others what they need to know. There is much to consider in 2000 years of church history that we know was not all good. It was not until 1517 that the Reformation led to the division of the Roman Catholic Church in Europe into different denominations. This means that there were 1500 years of church history before there were the Protestants and much later the Evangelicals (19th century).

The last 500 years have seen religious wars between Catholics and Protestants and against Islam. In the 17th century, Protestant-Catholic tensions increased, especially in Germany, leading to the Thirty Years' War from 1618 to 1648, in which much of central Europe was destroyed and much of the continent was divided along Catholic and Protestant lines. Swedes, Danes, and French were all involved. The war culminated in the Peace of Westphalia (1648), which gave Calvinists and Lutherans the same rights as Catholics. This was preceded by the Huguenot Wars in France in the 16th century, and the Reformation led to the division of society into two religious camps: Catholics and Protestants (also known as Huguenots). This mutual intolerance led to a French civil war, which took place between 1562 and 1598 and resulted in 8 other conflicts. In 1871, the Protestant rulers of Germany launched a program known as the Kulturkampf, which involved the suppression of German Catholicism and lasted until after World War II.

The reason I am telling you all this is because I have often had cause to talk about history to Christians, predominantly protestants, and found their awareness of events somewhat lacking. You only have to buy one of these big picture book of church history to realise how much has been going on, if you then look into each episode, you can fill a library (or in my case, a computer).

Ichthus77 wrote:I don’t have my copy of Richardson’s book on hand, or a pristine memory, but he addresses whether or not each of the various cultures had ever been exposed to other cultures, or if it was first contact—he discusses the difference between a correct understanding & a distortion (as gnosticism is—though you are oddly still fine with that) & isn’t ignorant as you assume (though you are seemingly not ignorant & yet are still okay with distortion??). Suuuper interesting stuff.

There is genetic evidence for two major historical lineages on New Guinea and neighbouring islands. A first wave from the Malay Archipelago about 50,000 years ago, when New Guinea and Australia were a single landmass called Sahul. Much later, there was a wave of Austronesian people from the north who introduced Austronesian languages and pigs about 3,500 years ago, leaving a small but significant genetic trace in many coastal Papuan peoples (only a minority of Austronesian-speaking Papuans can be shown to have Austronesian ancestors). Certain tribes of the Amazon rainforest are closely related to Australian Aborigines and to Melanesians from Papua New Guinea. This extraordinary, unexpected and extremely ancient DNA signal is only present in South America and is completely absent in North America and Mesoamerica.

Ichthus77 wrote:The “all peoples” promises given to Abraham have had to be repeated and preserved because of going off track throughout history — or, rather — of God getting things back on track. This culminates like labor pains to the present track. Like a broken record. Almost as if we …prefer… broken records. What is driving it?

The broken promises are a matter of interpretation and academic speculation. We need to get back down to simple life and follow the lead that the sermon on the mount gives. We need grass roots spirituality, and less of the exclusivist, militant, tribal propaganda that has been passed as religion.
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
When you are out of touch with reality you will easily embrace a delusion, and equally put in doubt the most basic elements of existence. If this reminds you of the mindset of the present day materialist science and philosophy establishments, as well as of the loudest voices in the socio-political debate, we should not be particularly surprised, since they show all the signs of attending with the left hemisphere alone. I live in the hope that that may soon change: for without a change we are lost.
McGilchrist, Iain . The Matter With Things: Our Brains, Our Delusions and the Unmaking of the World (S.562). Perspectiva Press. Kindle-Version.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Ichthus77 » Sun Apr 03, 2022 5:36 am

John himself called it antichristian. Your sources are late distortions. Multiplying words is a time consuming smoke screen lacking substance.
Fall semester ends 12/16/22. Apologies if I do not reply immediately.

“In choosing myself, I choose the other.”
- A marriage of Sartre & Levinas

“ Gloria Dei est vivens homo. “
Trans.: The glory of God is man fully alive.
- Irenaeus
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Bob » Sun Apr 03, 2022 5:39 am

Ichthus77 wrote:John himself called it antichristian. Your sources are late distortions. Multiplying words is a time consuming smoke screen lacking substance.

You could name the chapter and verse ...
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
When you are out of touch with reality you will easily embrace a delusion, and equally put in doubt the most basic elements of existence. If this reminds you of the mindset of the present day materialist science and philosophy establishments, as well as of the loudest voices in the socio-political debate, we should not be particularly surprised, since they show all the signs of attending with the left hemisphere alone. I live in the hope that that may soon change: for without a change we are lost.
McGilchrist, Iain . The Matter With Things: Our Brains, Our Delusions and the Unmaking of the World (S.562). Perspectiva Press. Kindle-Version.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Ichthus77 » Sun Apr 03, 2022 5:47 am

Fall semester ends 12/16/22. Apologies if I do not reply immediately.

“In choosing myself, I choose the other.”
- A marriage of Sartre & Levinas

“ Gloria Dei est vivens homo. “
Trans.: The glory of God is man fully alive.
- Irenaeus
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Bob » Sun Apr 03, 2022 6:16 am

Ichthus77 wrote:https://biblehub.com/1_john/4-3.htm#study

https://biblehub.com/commentaries/1_john/4-3.htm

Despite the fact that there is no scholarly consensus as to the authorship of the Johannine works and most scholars believe is not the same as John the Apostle, I’ll accept the Epistle, but point out that the terminology, “does not confess Jesus is not from God” is not what I’m about. The more positive “does confess Jesus is from God” is interpretable. What does it mean to say that Jesus is from God?

I believe that Jesus is from God because he acted out what the Prophets said in his actions and words and embodied the spirit of their words. This doesn’t mean that thinking that his message is deeper and more mystical than generally accepted denies that he is “from God.” In fact, I am saying that the depth of his understanding of Hebrew scripture went over and above the scribes and the pharisees, because he knew that knowledge (da’ath or gnosis) means an interaction with God, along with wisdom and understanding, which is why he told people to look out their “chamber”, their inmost room (often interpreted as the pantry), shut the door and interact with God. That chamber is their inmost being.

The Lord gives wisdom [ħokhma] (sophia), from his face come knowledge [da'ath] (gnosis) and understanding [tevuna] (synesis)" — Proverbs 2.6
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
When you are out of touch with reality you will easily embrace a delusion, and equally put in doubt the most basic elements of existence. If this reminds you of the mindset of the present day materialist science and philosophy establishments, as well as of the loudest voices in the socio-political debate, we should not be particularly surprised, since they show all the signs of attending with the left hemisphere alone. I live in the hope that that may soon change: for without a change we are lost.
McGilchrist, Iain . The Matter With Things: Our Brains, Our Delusions and the Unmaking of the World (S.562). Perspectiva Press. Kindle-Version.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Ichthus77 » Sun Apr 03, 2022 6:24 am

You should try to clearly distinguish yourself from the gnostics John is confronting. Resist confusion.

Scholarly consensus is about as meaningful as academic freedom these days.
Fall semester ends 12/16/22. Apologies if I do not reply immediately.

“In choosing myself, I choose the other.”
- A marriage of Sartre & Levinas

“ Gloria Dei est vivens homo. “
Trans.: The glory of God is man fully alive.
- Irenaeus
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Bob » Sun Apr 03, 2022 6:50 am

Ichthus77 wrote:You should try to clearly distinguish yourself from the gnostics John is confronting. Resist confusion.

Scholarly consensus is about as meaningful as academic freedom these days.

Who is confused? I'm not and I'm trying to show that many biases come from lack of differentiating, jumping on words as if they only meant one thing. It is a reductionist attitude that may have simplification as its goal, but in the end, it prevents a deeper understanding of what was going on.

We have done this in the past when meeting up with indigenous people, declaring their daimons to be evil, and not understood how their cultural differences have created concepts that are primarily different on the surface, but in practise have similarities. The bond with nature has, even as late as the 18th Century, often been associated with evil and led to the witch-hunts, but "The Earth is the Lord's and all it contains..." and it was God that said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees on the earth bearing fruit after their kind with seed in them.”

Just think about the struggles of people trying to understand the human body, and their medicines were said to be "from the devil". It is this kind of prejudice that we have to overcome, especially since Jesus was accused of driving out demons with the authority of Satan as well.
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
When you are out of touch with reality you will easily embrace a delusion, and equally put in doubt the most basic elements of existence. If this reminds you of the mindset of the present day materialist science and philosophy establishments, as well as of the loudest voices in the socio-political debate, we should not be particularly surprised, since they show all the signs of attending with the left hemisphere alone. I live in the hope that that may soon change: for without a change we are lost.
McGilchrist, Iain . The Matter With Things: Our Brains, Our Delusions and the Unmaking of the World (S.562). Perspectiva Press. Kindle-Version.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Ichthus77 » Sun Apr 03, 2022 1:33 pm

Meno_ is doing the work to prevent equivocation. S/He shared this with me:
https://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/cong ... eo_en.html
Fall semester ends 12/16/22. Apologies if I do not reply immediately.

“In choosing myself, I choose the other.”
- A marriage of Sartre & Levinas

“ Gloria Dei est vivens homo. “
Trans.: The glory of God is man fully alive.
- Irenaeus
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Bob » Sun Apr 03, 2022 4:07 pm

Ichthus77 wrote:Meno_ is doing the work to prevent equivocation. S/He shared this with me:
https://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/cong ... eo_en.html

Thank you for the document, to which there is a lot to say.

I. Introduction
1. If we take Christ to be the incarnation of the divine word, so that “man might in the Holy Spirit have access to the Father and come to share in the divine nature,” we have an indication of the Unity to which we should, by the will of God, return. The role of the church is to turn “toward all persons with a maternal love, to announce to them the plan of the Covenant of the Father,” which some of those serving in the church over the millennia, have done. However, we know that many have not, and have turned towards all persons in a vengeful spirit, far from a maternal love, and sought to dominate and subjugate, rather than announce the plan of the covenant. It is “difficult to understand” because of the recent revelations of abuse of trust, and sexual degradation under which young people, entrusted into the care of the church, where subject to.

II. The effect of current cultural changes on the meaning of Christian salvation

2. It is difficult for the contemporary world to perceive the confession of the Christian faith, precisely because of the betrayal of trust, and the exclusivity of the teaching, which was not preached in a maternal caring sense, but oppressively. Some of us can sort the human failure from the teaching of the Gospel, and discern the message of salvation, by which humanity is encouraged to start again under the cross, and live new lives. Others, especially the victims of abuse and those horrified by it, have difficulties. Admittedly, the current influence of individualism is a problem that few people can fathom, and it is this that is splitting society at all levels, and I believe too, that “the figure of Christ appears as a model that inspires generous actions,” as he has in my life. The reconciliatory aspect of the Gospel has been of great importance, where a maternal, caring attitude has prevailed. “The need to accept, heal and renew our relationships with others and with the created world” is especially apparent today, where so much animosity is witnessed.

3. I wouldn’t have referred to a mindset “in which the individual, understood to be radically autonomous, presumes to save oneself,” as a new form of Pelagianism, since most people will not be familiar with the old form. However, if that is how the Pope wants to call it, then okay. The “new form of Gnosticism puts forward a model of salvation that is merely interior, closed off in its own subjectivism,” isn’t really what I’m about, since I see the terminology referring to a knowing that is intimate and interactive, and encourage this personal devotion as preparation for church services. It is also related to a deepening of the understanding of scripture, reaching back to the language of Jesus and that of the Prophets. This has not been the line of Catholic teaching, rather it has been the intermediary role of the priest that has dominated, and the trust in that role which has been betrayed.

4. The “disregard of the body” is a strange place to start, considering that in the Gospels, Jesus refers to dying to self. He said, “whoever finds his life will lose it, whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.” Losing one’s life normally means that the body dies. However, if we accept that the teachings and vocabulary of the New Testament are actually expressions of what we call non-duality, we can see that Jesus was speaking figuratively, and it is about losing the concept of self. The Apostle Paul also uses different terms to describe the two selves, he talks about the “old self” and the “new self”, some translations will use the terms “old man” and “new man”. He says in his letter to the Romans, that the old self was crucified and died so that the new self might live to Christ and live in God. At one stage, he cries out, “wretched man that I am, who will deliver me from this body of death?” So, it isn’t difficult to understand that people get the wrong impression, not knowing that the word he is using is “sarx”, translated often as flesh, but for clarity in other translations as “sinful nature”. Considering the methods of chastening that have been practised in Catholicism, a disregard for the body is understandable.
For further confusion, look at how the word body is used in this statement: “thanks to the gift of his Spirit, […] we are able to unite ourselves to the Father as sons in the Son, and become one body in the “firstborn among many brothers” (Rom 8:29).”

III. The human desire for salvation

5. It is true that human beings see themselves as a mystery, and we go through phases of life in which the struggle is more obvious than in others, and some are more successful than others. The external signs of wellbeing being as they may, it is the “need for interior peace and for a peaceful coexistence with one’s neighbour” that has the largest effect. I wouldn’t have seen “a commitment toward a greater good, [which] also maintains the character of endurance and of overcoming pain” as connected to the question of salvation.

6. However, rejecting the attempts of self-realization as merely futile, vain, or insubstantial, is a criticism that grates considering the lack of example. To say that only God makes it possible suggests that he makes other things impossible. It is also a rejection of devotion that isn’t mediated by the church, which is the point being made. Agreed that my aspirations can be out of a narcissistic mindset, but who is going to guarantee that the priests are above that?

7. The biggest damage that can be done to me is what I do to myself, really. Tell that to the broken people who were sexually abused as children by Priests who were supposed to care for them! There is “missing the mark” and then there is damaging people, and we all can identify with the former, and we know that if it goes unchecked it can become the latter. I am encouraged by the fact that the priests that I have known, which were not many, have been gentle spirits. I have known individuals, however, who were good at damaging people.

IV. Christ, Savior and Salvation

8. What is clear here is that the reference to “all humanity” is the known humanity of the Biblical tradition, whereas we know that human beings were spread about the globe tens of thousands of years before the Bible was composed, and consequently had no knowledge of Noah or Abraham. I see the story of God choosing a people, which then goes on to break apart until a remnant is left, and ultimately only one person, as a story of human failure, and the final sacrifice through Jesus, proclaimed as an act of salvation, as a turnaround in spite of that failure. But it is a new beginning for those who look upon the cross as a remedy for the poison in their “body of death”, giving life a “new horizon and a decisive direction.”

9. There is “the healing dimension of salvation, by which Christ redeems us from sin,” and “the elevating dimension” by “the One who divinizes and justifies man.” It is quite normal for people who are in the position to speculate on the nature of existence to ask themselves, what this elevation actually means. There are some that regard this as the return to the cosmic consciousness that manifested this universe, and a re-joining of the glimmering wick with the flame, of the divine breath (nephesh) with its source.

10. The text at least acknowledges that salvation also occurs in an interior manner, but the church wants its role as mediator of salvation. This is what a lot of this fuss is about, and why the church is concerned. Through its tolerating scandals in its ranks, as well as its own “missing the mark”, it has lost the trust it might have had as a mediator. That is a serious catastrophe. The threats it has spoken out in the past, when scaring the living daylights out of people, must surely be the consequences of its own behaviour. Jesus warned the Scribes and the Pharisees, that the devout are the first to be judged.

11. If Christ had come in the way the church has shown itself, he wouldn’t have just said “I am the Way”, follow me, he would have threatened the whole world, and failed. Because all those who sought to rule in that way have passed, and grass has grown over their graves. What we need is a church that is truly and demonstrably maternal and caring, which considering the “men only” leadership, is a little difficult. The pomp and the grandeur would make way for humility, compassion and benevolence, and speak out against the hypocrisy of the world, and grace would move enough people to follow Christ’s way.

V. Salvation in the Church, Body of Christ

12. This movement of humility, compassion, and benevolence, moving as a wave across the land, would become a church of healing and wholeness, where the words of the Gospel could be experienced, where unity could improvise, where the sacred has a place, where life vibrates, and the awareness of possibilities would spread. Diversity would be embraced, “know thyself” would have priority, people would be baptised, communion would be celebrated, and people would praise the source of life.

13. It is the fault of the church, that this has not happened. Its concern with power and it’s wielding its might through the centuries has undermined its message, which I still find compelling. It already has difficulty finding enough priests. If the church now warns against other ways in which people have sought to find meaning, although people gather around the story of Christ, seeking ways to follow his word, then it puts itself on the wrong side, and is still only concerned with it’s power.
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
When you are out of touch with reality you will easily embrace a delusion, and equally put in doubt the most basic elements of existence. If this reminds you of the mindset of the present day materialist science and philosophy establishments, as well as of the loudest voices in the socio-political debate, we should not be particularly surprised, since they show all the signs of attending with the left hemisphere alone. I live in the hope that that may soon change: for without a change we are lost.
McGilchrist, Iain . The Matter With Things: Our Brains, Our Delusions and the Unmaking of the World (S.562). Perspectiva Press. Kindle-Version.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Bob » Mon Apr 11, 2022 12:36 pm

I believe that the essential unity of everything is real, whereas duality and plurality are phenomenal illusions, and that matter, as materialized energy, is the temporal manifestation of an intangible, spiritual, eternal essence that is the innermost self of all things, which may be identifiable as a cosmic consciousness. This is, of course, a doctrine of classical Brahmanism, but essentially in most religions in some form. In Neoplatonism everything is derived from The One, and Perennial philosophy has its roots in the Renaissance interest in Neo-Platonism and its idea of The One.

This is primarily found in a mystical view of God and of Christ, which the church tried to banish first of all under Constantine, but also later in church history, wherever it reappeared, there was opposition and many people suffered and died for it. The language of “the court”, of rulers, which is integrated into Roman Catholic Christianity, is far removed from the itinerant preacher Jesus of Nazareth, and this becomes very clear when one reads the Gospels in Aramaic, as they have been preserved by Syriac Christians. It is there that the nondual aspects of his teaching become very clear.

Assyrian Christian writer Abraham Rihbany (1869-1944) wrote: “As is well known to church historians, the Syrian Christians of the Semitic stock have had very little to do with the development of the "creeds of Christendom." Theological organization has been as foreign to the minds of the Eastern Christians as political organization. They have always been worshippers rather than theologians, believers rather than systematic thinkers … … The Christian Church had its simple origin with a group of Jewish followers of Jesus Christ in Palestine … The creed of the theologians consists of many “articles”; the creed of Christ only two: “Love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and thy neighbour as thyself.”
Rihbany, Abraham Mitrie. The Syrian Christ (S.239). Good Press. Kindle-Version.

Rihbany praises the Gospels “unrestrained effusiveness of expression; its vivid, almost flashy and fantastic imagery; it’s naïve narrations; the rugged unstudied simplicity of its parables; its unconventional (and to the more modest West rather unseemly) portrayal of certain human relations; as well as its all-permeating spiritual mysticism…” (S.8 )

I am thankful to Neil Douglas-Klotz for mentioning another Aramaic Christian scholar, George Lamsa, who “pointed out the irony that most Christians in Europe were not allowed to read the scriptures until well after the advent of the printing press in the Middle Ages; until that time only priests were allowed to see the scriptures. Even the possession of a translation of the Gospels in a vernacular language was punishable by death. On the other hand, a thousand years earlier, Aramaic-speaking Christians had copies of the Gospel in Aramaic in their homes and for open use.”
Douglas-Klotz, Neil. The Hidden Gospel (S.17) Quest Books.

As both of these authors note, the mind of a Semitic language speaker inherently divides and makes sense of reality differently than that of a Greek or Latin speaker. I find it unfortunate that we are not aware of that when we read the Gospel – nor can we without help. Even more unfortunate is the fact that where help is offered, it is often rejected. Rihbany relates in his autobiography, how he was presented as a forty-day old child to the priest, much like Mary took the infant Jesus to Simeon, to be presented at the altar. The continuance of tradition shows how no new rites had to be introduced, because the source had been in their hands for over a thousand years.

You cannot understand Jesus fully from the outside, and the tradition of the Western church has been deeply dualistic in its approach to existence, as against the non-dualistic, mystical approach that Aramaic people took for granted in the Gospels. We have taken from the pictures that our translations have suggested, as though taking a snapshot as a tourist, but haven’t grasped what it means to have lived in Palestine in those times. Some of us are, as Rihbany writes, “hasty tourists” who immediately interpret observed situations into our own reality, which means we take two “steps” back, distancing ourselves from the meaning of the Gospels: in language and culture.

In some ways we have discovered some practises for our own lives. The pilgrimage for example, which in biblical times (and in Syria of 1914) could be undertaken for many reasons, seeking either to be healed of a certain ailment, to atone for a sin, or to be divinely helped in some other way. It wasn’t unusual to be undertaken by women for the purpose of securing the blessing of fertility, or consecrating an approaching issue of wedlock to God, or to the patron saint of the visited sanctuary.

The happy journey is often made on foot, the parties most concerned walking all the way "on the flesh of their feet"; that is, with neither shoes nor sandals on. This great sacrifice is made as a mark of sincere humility which is deemed to be pleasing to God and his holy saints. However, the wearing of shoes and even the use of mounts is not considered a sinful practice on such occasions, and is indulged in by many of the well-to-do families. The state of the heart is, of course, the chief thing to be considered.
Rihbany, Abraham Mitrie. The Syrian Christ (S.13). Good Press. Kindle-Version.

What I read here, and in many more pages of Rihbany’s book is that many of the rites and rituals are undertaken physically, and in accordance with age old traditions that have proved their worth, even if we deem them “superstitious” in some cases. Modern rationalism is challenged by such rituals, also the words of the Bible, that describe such rituals – but not only here, the whole Gospel story is troubling rationally spoken, but infused with meaning that goes beyond the superficial. Alone the opening of what we call the “Our Father” or “Lord’s prayer” has a mystical sound to it in Aramaic: “Abwoon d’bashmaya” can be interpreted in many ways, as Semitic languages are, gleaning meaning from each syllable, let alone from each word.

Language is metaphorical by nature, but our modern languages cannot compete with the Semitic languages in this sense. By comparison, Douglas-Klotz says that our translations “are like fruit juice that has been strained through a very fine filter and heated, leaving all the valuable vitamins, minerals, trace elements, and pulp behind.” (S.20) Only the person who appreciates the meaning of each syllable, which flows with the superficial sense that is usually correctly translated, can grasp the feeling with which these words are spoken. We usually have to list the diversity of meanings to get a feeling for it.

Another aspect of Semitic tradition is that interpretations of texts are right in the context of the moment. Tomorrow another emphasis may be made, which is then right for tomorrow. “In this tradition of translation and interpretation, the words of a prophet or mystic – stories, prayers, and visionary statements – challenge listeners to understand them according to their own life experience.” (S.21)

The presence of nonduality in the Aramaic translation of the Gospel can be found in many sayings, but I won’t be able to hold your interest for that long, so let it suffice for the moment to read from Matth. 5:8, which according to KJV reads: “Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.” Translated from the Aramaic, we read: “Ripe are the consistent in heart; they shall see Sacred Unity everywhere!” Alaha is the Aramaic word for God, but it also means Sacred Unity, Oneness, the All, the Ultimate Power/Potential, the One …
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
When you are out of touch with reality you will easily embrace a delusion, and equally put in doubt the most basic elements of existence. If this reminds you of the mindset of the present day materialist science and philosophy establishments, as well as of the loudest voices in the socio-political debate, we should not be particularly surprised, since they show all the signs of attending with the left hemisphere alone. I live in the hope that that may soon change: for without a change we are lost.
McGilchrist, Iain . The Matter With Things: Our Brains, Our Delusions and the Unmaking of the World (S.562). Perspectiva Press. Kindle-Version.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby MagsJ » Mon Apr 11, 2022 3:21 pm

_
Interesting last post, and thread, Bob.. I’ll read, and comment back, later.
The possibility of anything we can imagine existing is endless and infinite.. ~MagsJ

I haven't got the time to spend the time reading something that is telling me nothing, as I will never be able to get back that time, and I may need it for something important at some point in time.. Huh!? ~MagsJ

You’re suggestions and I just simply don’t mix.. like oil on water, or a very bad DJ ~MagsJ

Examine what is said, not him who speaks ~Arab proverb

aes Sanātana Dharma Pali: the eternal way ~it should not be rigid, but inclusive of the best of all knowledge for the sake of Ṛta.. which is endless.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby felix dakat » Mon Apr 11, 2022 7:18 pm

Bob Thank you for your arguments in support of a nondual view of Christianity. You continue to help me clear a way on that path.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Bob » Tue Apr 12, 2022 10:03 am

“The Oriental does not try to meet an assault upon his belief in miracles by seeking to establish the historicity of concrete reports of miracles. His poetical, mystical temperament seeks its ends in another way. Relying upon his fundamental faith in the omnipotence of God, he throws the burden of proof upon his assailant by challenging him to substantiate his denial of the miracles. So did Paul (in the twenty-sixth chapter of the Book of Acts) put his opponents at a great disadvantage by asking, "Why should it be thought a thing incredible with you, that God should raise the dead?"”
Rihbany, Abraham Mitrie. The Syrian Christ (S.17). Good Press. Kindle-Version.


The poetical, mystical, and romantic reading of the Bible is about hope and optimism, for “pessimism cannot sing, for it has no song, and cannot pray, for it has no faith,” as Rihbany says. The Bible is always speaking about optimism and hope, attempting to lead God’s people towards their potential. The whole list of rites and rituals that Rihbany describes is directed towards this goal, as in the acceptance of a child (as the child) into the church, similar to rites of the Jewish temple. Of course, this is still very much a patriarchal vision (1916), but women are not without their calling and have an important role to play. Today, this role, which has much to do with childbirth, is played down, and the joy of these societies that is experienced around the announcement of pregnancy and of a healthy child, is weighed against the disappointment of failed pregnancies, and bias towards male children. However, the stories around the birth of Jesus must be understood in this oriental setting.

Today we praise ourselves as "modern" because we are able to postpone pregnancy indefinitely, albeit often with side effects, and by making great efforts to defer the biological facts of life. Everything we do against biology has a disruptive effect on natural life, even if we seem to overcome this psychologically - at least temporarily. We resist with our rational minds the possibility that we are changing our destiny in harmful ways and with unknown consequences. But whether in agriculture, in preserving habitats and wildlife, in keeping waters clean, or in preventing pandemics, we have seen that our mastery of biology is limited. We have had to develop technologies to combat the problems we ourselves created. This may explain why traditional societies were seemingly "superstitious" about altering the natural flow of life and considered nature sacred. In this sense we could ask, “"Why should it be thought a thing incredible with you, that God grants one thing and doesn’t grant another?”
“To Eastern peoples, especially the Semites, reproduction in all the world of life is profoundly sacred. It is God's life reproducing itself in the life of man and in the living world below man; therefore the evidences of this reproduction should be looked upon and spoken of with rejoicing … I count as among the most precious memories of my childhood my going with my father to the vineyard, just as the vines began to "come out," and hearing him say as he touched the swelling buds, "Blessed be the Creator. He is the Supreme Giver. May He protect the blessed increase." Of this I almost always think when I read the words of the psalmist, "The earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof!"”
Rihbany, Abraham Mitrie. The Syrian Christ (S.19-20). Good Press. Kindle-Version.

We have lost sight of many aspects of natural life and have even mocked those with a “common sense” that were orientated towards nature and the cosmos. In talking about the story of the Magi following a star to Jesus, Rihbany says …
How natural to the thought of the East the story of the "star of Bethlehem" is! To the Orientals "the heavens declare the glory of God," and the stars reveal many wondrous things to men. They are the messengers of good and evil, and objects of the loftiest idealization, as well as of the crudest superstitions. Those who have gazed upon the stars in the deep, clear Syrian heavens can find no difficulty in entering into the spirit of the majestic strains of the writer of the eighth Psalm. "When I consider thy heavens," says this ancient singer, "the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; what is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?" Deeps beyond deeps are revealed through that dry, soft, and clear atmosphere of the "land of promise," yet the constellations seem as near to the beholder as parlor lamps. "My soul longeth" for the vision of the heavens from the heights of my native Lebanon, and the hills of Palestine. It is no wonder to me that my people have always considered the stars as guides and companions, and as awe-inspiring manifestations of the Creator's power, wisdom, and glory. "The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech and night unto night sheweth knowledge.”” (S.23-24).

The sight of the stars in a Syrian night has become metaphor in the Arab language, as it was in the Aramaic, spoken by their ancestors. This metaphorical language must be taken into account, as we see in the Old and New Testament, when allusions of the influence of the stars on human lives are spoken of. Of course, all too great a reliance upon the “star-gazers” or “star-arresters” is criticised in the Bible, but Rihbany says, “Beyond all such crudities, however, lies the sublime and sustaining belief that the stars are alive with God” as we see in the Songbook of the Bible, the Psalms.

For Rhibany, it is clear that “the mystic accents of the ancient seers […] expressed in the rich narratives of the New Testament the deepest and dearest hopes of the soul.” … “And I believe that both as a Christian and as an Oriental, I have a perfect right to be a mystic, after the wholesome New Testament fashion.” (S.29). He sees the narrative of the nativity presented “in a most exquisite poetical form” and as “the expression of a sublime and passionate desire of the soul for the divine companionship and for infinite peace.” The story of the educated Magi and the uneducated shepherds visiting the Christ Child in the manger is so inclusive that it is an encouragement to all, rich or poor, educated or illiterate.

"There is no great and no small
To the soul that maketh all:
And where it cometh, all things are;
And it cometh everywhere."
Rihbany, Abraham Mitrie. The Syrian Christ (S.31). Good Press. Kindle-Version.
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
When you are out of touch with reality you will easily embrace a delusion, and equally put in doubt the most basic elements of existence. If this reminds you of the mindset of the present day materialist science and philosophy establishments, as well as of the loudest voices in the socio-political debate, we should not be particularly surprised, since they show all the signs of attending with the left hemisphere alone. I live in the hope that that may soon change: for without a change we are lost.
McGilchrist, Iain . The Matter With Things: Our Brains, Our Delusions and the Unmaking of the World (S.562). Perspectiva Press. Kindle-Version.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby felix dakat » Tue Apr 12, 2022 2:47 pm

Bob wrote:
“The Oriental does not try to meet an assault upon his belief in miracles by seeking to establish the historicity of concrete reports of miracles. His poetical, mystical temperament seeks its ends in another way. Relying upon his fundamental faith in the omnipotence of God, he throws the burden of proof upon his assailant by challenging him to substantiate his denial of the miracles. So did Paul (in the twenty-sixth chapter of the Book of Acts) put his opponents at a great disadvantage by asking, "Why should it be thought a thing incredible with you, that God should raise the dead?"”
Rihbany, Abraham Mitrie. The Syrian Christ (S.17). Good Press. Kindle-Version.


The poetical, mystical, and romantic reading of the Bible is about hope and optimism, for “pessimism cannot sing, for it has no song, and cannot pray, for it has no faith,” as Rihbany says. The Bible is always speaking about optimism and hope, attempting to lead God’s people towards their potential. The whole list of rites and rituals that Rihbany describes is directed towards this goal, as in the acceptance of a child (as the child) into the church, similar to rites of the Jewish temple. Of course, this is still very much a patriarchal vision (1916), but women are not without their calling and have an important role to play. Today, this role, which has much to do with childbirth, is played down, and the joy of these societies that is experienced around the announcement of pregnancy and of a healthy child, is weighed against the disappointment of failed pregnancies, and bias towards male children. However, the stories around the birth of Jesus must be understood in this oriental setting.

Today we praise ourselves as "modern" because we are able to postpone pregnancy indefinitely, albeit often with side effects, and by making great efforts to defer the biological facts of life. Everything we do against biology has a disruptive effect on natural life, even if we seem to overcome this psychologically - at least temporarily. We resist with our rational minds the possibility that we are changing our destiny in harmful ways and with unknown consequences. But whether in agriculture, in preserving habitats and wildlife, in keeping waters clean, or in preventing pandemics, we have seen that our mastery of biology is limited. We have had to develop technologies to combat the problems we ourselves created. This may explain why traditional societies were seemingly "superstitious" about altering the natural flow of life and considered nature sacred. In this sense we could ask, “"Why should it be thought a thing incredible with you, that God grants one thing and doesn’t grant another?”
“To Eastern peoples, especially the Semites, reproduction in all the world of life is profoundly sacred. It is God's life reproducing itself in the life of man and in the living world below man; therefore the evidences of this reproduction should be looked upon and spoken of with rejoicing … I count as among the most precious memories of my childhood my going with my father to the vineyard, just as the vines began to "come out," and hearing him say as he touched the swelling buds, "Blessed be the Creator. He is the Supreme Giver. May He protect the blessed increase." Of this I almost always think when I read the words of the psalmist, "The earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof!"”
Rihbany, Abraham Mitrie. The Syrian Christ (S.19-20). Good Press. Kindle-Version.

We have lost sight of many aspects of natural life and have even mocked those with a “common sense” that were orientated towards nature and the cosmos. In talking about the story of the Magi following a star to Jesus, Rihbany says …
How natural to the thought of the East the story of the "star of Bethlehem" is! To the Orientals "the heavens declare the glory of God," and the stars reveal many wondrous things to men. They are the messengers of good and evil, and objects of the loftiest idealization, as well as of the crudest superstitions. Those who have gazed upon the stars in the deep, clear Syrian heavens can find no difficulty in entering into the spirit of the majestic strains of the writer of the eighth Psalm. "When I consider thy heavens," says this ancient singer, "the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; what is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?" Deeps beyond deeps are revealed through that dry, soft, and clear atmosphere of the "land of promise," yet the constellations seem as near to the beholder as parlor lamps. "My soul longeth" for the vision of the heavens from the heights of my native Lebanon, and the hills of Palestine. It is no wonder to me that my people have always considered the stars as guides and companions, and as awe-inspiring manifestations of the Creator's power, wisdom, and glory. "The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech and night unto night sheweth knowledge.”” (S.23-24).

The sight of the stars in a Syrian night has become metaphor in the Arab language, as it was in the Aramaic, spoken by their ancestors. This metaphorical language must be taken into account, as we see in the Old and New Testament, when allusions of the influence of the stars on human lives are spoken of. Of course, all too great a reliance upon the “star-gazers” or “star-arresters” is criticised in the Bible, but Rihbany says, “Beyond all such crudities, however, lies the sublime and sustaining belief that the stars are alive with God” as we see in the Songbook of the Bible, the Psalms.

For Rhibany, it is clear that “the mystic accents of the ancient seers […] expressed in the rich narratives of the New Testament the deepest and dearest hopes of the soul.” … “And I believe that both as a Christian and as an Oriental, I have a perfect right to be a mystic, after the wholesome New Testament fashion.” (S.29). He sees the narrative of the nativity presented “in a most exquisite poetical form” and as “the expression of a sublime and passionate desire of the soul for the divine companionship and for infinite peace.” The story of the educated Magi and the uneducated shepherds visiting the Christ Child in the manger is so inclusive that it is an encouragement to all, rich or poor, educated or illiterate.

"There is no great and no small
To the soul that maketh all:
And where it cometh, all things are;
And it cometh everywhere."
Rihbany, Abraham Mitrie. The Syrian Christ (S.31). Good Press. Kindle-Version.


Is it less incredible now that thousands people are being resusitated and reporting NDEs? Of course it's not the same thing. Which raises (pun acknowledged) the question: What ever happened to Lazurus who Christ raised? Of course, that question misses Rihbany's point. At the moment one asks for the historical origin of the myth, one is missing the mythic meaning of the story.

The Christmas story points us to the divine light within us. Read the story in that light and you have its essence!
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Bob » Wed Apr 13, 2022 8:44 am

Neil Douglas-Klotz made reference to the fact that the Hebrew-Aramaic texts in the Bible point to an understanding of existence that has a bearing on metaphysical idealism, or the nonduality of the New Testament.

Faces of light: Vibration and Guidance
The first face of light we consider is the Aramaic word usually translated “name” [as in “hallowed be thy name”] … The root of this family, shem, can mean light, word, sound, reputation, name, and atmosphere. The roots themselves indicate the space or movement extending from a point (Sh) that defines some specific form of existence (M). What unifies these meanings is the idea of vibration: everything that vibrates its way into existence as a seemingly separate being carries its own unique shem … all individual name-light-vibrations return in various ways to the one sacred shem of the divine, which is beyond human words or names. All vibration is a part of the whole vibration of the universe. In fact, one of the words for “universe” or “cosmos” in Hebrew-Aramaic consists of the root shem along with the ending -aya, which indicates that the divine name-light-vibration is in every particle of existence. Some of these additional senses usually translated as “heaven” informed my renditions [in English] of the first line of the prayer of Jesus in chapter one.

Abwoon d’bashmaya

O Thou, the One from whom
Breath enters being in
All radiant forms.

O Parent of the universe, from your
Deep interior comes the next wave
Of shining life.

O fruitful, nurturing Life-giver!
Your sound rings everywhere
Throughout the cosmos.

Father-Mother who births Unity,
You vibrate life into form
In each new instant.”
Douglas-Klotz, Neil. The Hidden Gospel (S.69-70 & S.20)

Of course, for us Westerners, this sounds far stretched, because we are used to the narrow definition that our language offers us and the incorporation of Greek dualism in Christian teaching. But, as we have discussed before, there still are indications of this in the NT, even in our translations.
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
When you are out of touch with reality you will easily embrace a delusion, and equally put in doubt the most basic elements of existence. If this reminds you of the mindset of the present day materialist science and philosophy establishments, as well as of the loudest voices in the socio-political debate, we should not be particularly surprised, since they show all the signs of attending with the left hemisphere alone. I live in the hope that that may soon change: for without a change we are lost.
McGilchrist, Iain . The Matter With Things: Our Brains, Our Delusions and the Unmaking of the World (S.562). Perspectiva Press. Kindle-Version.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby felix dakat » Thu Apr 14, 2022 6:07 pm

Douglas-Klotz's interpretations of Matthew 6:9 [usually translated "Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name."] are unitive. He also seems to have string theory of particle physics in mind. I suppose that to verify correctness of interpretation independently I would have to learn Aramaic. The same kind of problem occurs when reading the many disparate translations of the Tao Te Ching in English. Whatever we would have taken away from the teachings of Jesus had we been present as native speakers of Aramaic when he gave those talks, we have the text in the Koine that the authors used. The Jesus they presented was [obviously?] their version of Jesus. And can we be certain that the "dualism" that people read in the original Greek manuscripts and subsequent translations of the New Testament are being read from it not rather being read into it? These questions will be in mind as I read translations now.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Bob » Tue Apr 19, 2022 6:59 am

Easter according to William Blake. Resurrection is neither miracle nor mystery

Mark Vernon
Just what the death and resurrection of Jesus means, just what happened, has been debated from the earliest times which is why I think in the gospels there are very different accounts of what was seen, what was experienced. Some seem like resuscitated bodies, others seem like a different kind of body that Jesus had, and so could pass through walls or be not recognized, and then recognized. Clearly, it's not simply about taking a picture, as if with a mobile phone, and recording what happened as a fact. And in fact, when the resurrection is presented as literal the disciples find it terrifying or bemusing. The literal clearly veils what this might mean, and so I think it's pushing for a transformation. Easter is nothing if it's not participating in the death and resurrection. Seeing the world in a completely different light. And this is why William Blake is quite clear that the death and resurrection of Jesus, Easter, is neither about a miracle nor is it a mystery.

The second thought there, that it's not a mystery, is perhaps even more interesting than the first. But first of all, it's not a miracle because that makes the resurrection a dead fact. I recently heard the Archbishop of Canterbury talking about the resurrection and saying that if the body of Jesus was found, then he would have to cease being a Christian. I thought how tragic that is. This is reducing Christianity to a kind of science, makes it very fragile, as if you can't know anything about resurrection life. First you have to prove that somehow it happened once 2000 years ago and then grip on, hold on to it. But if it's not a miracle, a one-off in history, that subsequent Christians are somehow supposed to cling on to for dear life, it's not a mystery either Blake thinks.

And by mystery he means in the more straightforward sense of mystery that which seems obscure, opaque, difficult to believe. You have to hold on to the resurrection as mystery in a parallel way to the resurrection as miracle, just hoping against hope that somehow it makes sense. Not understanding, but just gripping onto its presumed promise. Miracle and mystery both lead to the same need to possess it, to try to prove what happened. I think in a way it's why the crusaders wanted to seize the empty tomb, the presumed site of the empty tomb, from the Muslims, and today why, in Jerusalem, there are squabbles about who owns the site. It's actually the opposite of knowing divine life. It completely secularizes and makes worldly the story of Jesus’s death and resurrection, rather than it being seen as a pivotal moment, into the kingdom of God that's within you. That's here but often overlooked.

You see the effects of these two models of easter, particularly in the confusion amongst preachers and theologians today about the nature of the resurrection of the body, because it makes it a sort of conjuring trick with bones. As if somehow, in some way, that which we call flesh now is going to have to be brought back from the soil, or back from the air if we're cremated. It makes a mockery of the resurrection, to my way of thinking. It's also quite clearly, I think, against Paul, the earliest writer on Easter, who's clear that what he calls the ensouled body, the animated body, the instinctive body, that we do know most immediately now, how that's going to give way to what he calls a spiritual body. But that can also be felt within us now, as we'll come back to.

So, what did William Blake have to say about all this? How can he illuminate a better sense of Easter for today? Well first of all, he nails what's mistaken. For example, he talks about how the church has nailed Jesus on the tree of mystery, and this is the rational scientific heuristics, as he would put it, account of the resurrection. Calling it a miracle, calling it a mystery, with the problem that it just lacks vision, and he writes:

“The Ashes of Mystery began to animate they calld it Deism
And Natural Religion as of old so now anew began
Babylon again in Infancy Calld Natural Religion.”

(111: 22-24, E 386)

This is the effort to try and understand the resurrection through scientific means, or as a strange intervention by God that's just got to be held onto by blind faith, rather than revealing the divine reality now. Natural religion is belief in an objective account of Christianity, rather than one that's subjective and first most intimately known. And that's fallen. It makes the vision just strange and mysterious because it doesn't know the eternal in human form. It doesn't know that God is all in all. It prevents the world being seen in a grain of sand or heaven in a wildflower. It also turns the resurrection into a kind of power play, particularly for priests.

In his picture “24 elders cast their crowns before the throne” Blake shows how the gospel depicted in the four creatures that symbolize Mark, Matthew, Luke, and John becoming coloured like a deathly pallor and the lamb who's been sacrificed almost disappears in this image. You have to look quite hard to see the lamb before the throne and of course on the throne is Blake's image of heurism the deistic God with the ominous seven seals threatening humanity. Not welcoming humanity into divine life.

When the vegetable body, as Blake puts it, is all that's known, the spiritual body can't be seen and so Christianity becomes just another version of worldly secular life. It leads to what he calls deceitful religion, saying that what Christianity does is bridge the gulf between God and humanity, rather than showing that there is no gulf. It leads to a fear of death, and it also leads to what he calls religion “hid in war.” When Christianity in particular blesses conflict between human beings, as we're seeing now in the Russian war in Ukraine, and as Blake knew in his own time, when he lived in another European war, the Napoleonic wars, it makes Christianity as bad or even terrifying news, rather than seeing God. It says that your future is precarious, shaped by suffering, threatened by hell, and so as he writes in Vala The Four Zoas:

The church sings:
“O thou poor human form O thou poor child of woe
Why dost thou wander away from Tirzah why me compell to bind thee
If thou dost go away from me I shall consume upon the rocks
These fibres of thine eyes that used to wander in distant heavens
Away from me I have bound down with a hot iron
These nostrils that Expanded with delight in morning skies
I have bent downward with lead molten in my roaring furnaces
My soul is seven furnaces incessant roars the bellows
Upon my terribly flaming heart the molten metal runs
In channels thro my fiery limbs O love O pity O pain
O the pangs the bitter pangs of love forsaken”


This is a lack of vision and the mention there of Tirzah will remind us of the poem from the Songs of Innocence and of Experience called To Terzah, where Jesus sees through this threatening suffering bad news and says precisely the opposite,

“The death of Jesus set me free:
Then what have I to do with thee?”

So, he offers a vision a sense of compassion and forgiveness and conveys the presence of eternity, that enables a different way of engaging with easter. Not as an intervention, but as an unveiling of reality. Not as a mystery, but as a vision. Blake is quite clear that he's a visionary. He sees and he aims to help us to see, to know, to participate in divine life. That being the true Jesus, the divine human in which eternal life includes the reality of death, though now known as a giving, as a kindness, as a letting go of what's deluded. Not as an ending that is otherwise somehow put off or transcended.

This in one way is known in nature. Nature as the return to life, which is why easter and spring are associated. Blake can see Eve awakening and the eternal garden, Eden, blooming again. In Vala, The Four Zoas, Enion or eros, passion, that up-thrust of life, calls out “fear not” because she personified desire. Enion can see the bridegroom coming, she can see that the grave is where the Lamb of God rends the veil of mystery. We're like seeds, she says, looking for flower and fruit, the product of our life and we can know hope in the universe, and we can experience the gift of life.

Blake writes, “A voice came in the night a midnight cry upon the mountains
Awake the bridegroom cometh I awoke to sleep no more
But an Eternal Consummation is dark Enion
The watry Grave …
The Lamb of God has rent the Veil of Mystery soon to return
In Clouds & Fires around the rock & the Mysterious tree
As the seed waits Eagerly watching for its flower & fruit …
The Eternal Man is seen is heard is felt
And all his Sorrows till he reassumes his ancient bliss”


It's a change of consciousness for we humans much as it's a reaching for life amongst other creatures and beings. It's a cleansing of our perception, this awakening, and you see it particularly portrayed by Blake in his reflections on the relationship between Mary Magdalene and Jesus.

The picture of the Magdalen at the sepulchre is one of Blake’s images of the moment of resurrection, and it's very fascinating that he painted it with Mary in the sepulchre looking back at the resurrected Jesus behind her. The usual way to portray this moment is to paint Mary in the garden reaching out to Jesus with Jesus saying “noli me tangere” – “do not touch me,” but instead Blake paints Mary in a moment of uncertainty still, but it's a moment of bewilderment that's also a moment of transformation, hence Jesus’s hands are open beckoning. They're not preventing as they are in the traditional portrayals of the “do not touch me” moment. He's outside the tomb she is inside, but inside the tomb it's full of light from the angels from the very atmosphere as well as from Jesus, so this is not a single source, but is a visionary radiance that Mary is experiencing in the tomb. The presence of different consciousness and when Jesus asks her “why are you weeping?” she becomes conscious of her sorrow and is able to turn to Jesus, so that the energy of her sorrow is transformed into the energy of awakening.

I think that Blake chooses not to portray the “do not touch me” moment, because he wants to stress that Mary doesn't confuse Jesus with a resuscitated corpse, as if it's a strange mystery or a miraculous moment. Precisely the opposite. She is turning from the sepulchre, which is the church's version of this religion of death. Jesus is fulfilling in fact what he promised earlier in John's Gospel

“I will leave you not comfortless, I will come to you yet in a little while. The world sees me no more, yet you see me because I live. You also shall live, and, on that day, you shall know that I am in the father, and you in me, and I in you. He that loves me shall be loved of my father, and I will love him, and I will manifest myself to him.”

This is to say that, whilst Jesus leads, Mary is in the same transitional state as Jesus. She's participating in this moment, in the resurrection. She's been changed from glory to glory, and you see a similar recognition, visionary experience of the encounter with Jesus, in another image that probably shows Mary Magdalene again.

In Blake’s mind the women woman caught in adultery she is in a transitional moment too she stands upright with her breasts showing but strikingly not ashamed in her face although she's also bound with her hands tied behind her back. The figures who brought her to Jesus and tried to condemn her have already walked away, they've felt the condemnation in Jesus’s words, the one without sin cast the first stone, and so this is the moment in which Mary, the woman caught in adultery, is freed from earthly condemnation and awaiting what that might mean.

It's shown so strikingly because Jesus also doesn't condemn her but in Blake’s image actually bows to her in a way, when she might be the one bowing to him. He is recognizing the human form divine in her, and that recognition awakens the realization within her. So Blake can show how that which is condemned in shame is now released in light, as he puts it in the Everlasting Gospel, another poem that reflects in part on the encounter with Mary Magdalene,

That they may call a shame and sin
Love’s temple that God dwelleth in,
And hide in secret hidden shrine
The naked Human Form Divine,


The resurrection is when that is hidden no more. When it can't be called sin anymore, but known as “love's temple that god dwelleth in.

Another really interesting feature about Blake’s image of the woman caught in adultery is that Jesus is writing in in the dust, as the biblical account recalls, but writing in the dust after the condemners have turned away, rather than while they're still present, as if he's musing. And I think that Blake puts it this way around because he writes for us. Jesus’s pause before he writes in the dust, which is the moment caught in Blake’s picture, is for our imaginations to write or not in the dust. We're invited into the moment of transition too. What is going to be written? Asks us to consider in ourselves what realization is awakening for us. Maybe there'll be nothing written, because there are no written codes anymore to condemn, which the woman Mary sees and so realizes not just that she has the human form divine too but is free with that recognition and so the phrase “go sin no more,” it's not, as it's often interpreted, go and obey the rules that you've broken in the past, it's precisely the opposite. It's an explosion of imaginative possibility. Forget that whole business about sin. Step into the new life that's released now, because she can start to see a new way to live, a new place to go. The eternal life that she has had highlighted within her in this encounter.

So, if that's prefiguring the resurrection during the life of Jesus, then in between comes the crucifixion and Blake presents the crucifixion as the pivotal moment in which this kind of transformation, this kind of awakening, this visionary experience happens. He presents the crucifixion always with light emanating from the body of Jesus, particularly the head and the outspread arms. The cross is often presented as a tree, with apples and life on it, and the figures that stand before the crucified Jesus often have their arms outspread too, when they recognize what's going on, on the cross. It’s because they are human figures mirroring the divine figure before them, but also awakening the divine figure within them. In Jerusalem, the emanation of the giant Albion Los, the figure of imagination or divine vision, becomes Jesus. Imagination is transfigured, nature is awoken, nature is resurrection. This is about seeing something, not struggling to prove it. It's about seeing what John in his gospel calls the moment of Jesus being glorified, as the moment when Jesus is on the cross. I think it's also why, when Jesus looks down from the cross and says to Mary and John “behold thy mother, behold thy son,” this is not just a touching detail, although it is that, it's also saying, behold, step into this new way of life, that's right before you right now. As Blake puts it in one of his lovely summaries of how we might live in this resurrected life,

“It is right it should be so; Man was made for joy and woe; And when this we rightly know, Thro' the world we safely go. Joy and woe are woven fine, A clothing for the soul divine. “

We experience joy, we experience woe in life, but when we rightly know of our experience, because we're rooted in our true nature, our true self, which is the divine nature, the divine self, we can safely navigate a way through life, regardless of whether joy or woe comes to us, because we're not identified with the experience, but know our true awareness, the true presence of god that's within us. The kingdom of God that's within. It's such a different perception of life from secular living, worldly living. In another way, when the soldiers cast their lots for Jesus’s gown, the greediness of this world is shown even before the cross, that might present a different light. It's the desire again to prove and to possess, and yet Blake paints it paling alongside the transcendent light of the cross, coming from the crucifixion. You can almost see the crucifixion in this moment as manifesting for us a kind of dream state, when our true nature is forgotten, that imagines death is somehow the enemy, imagines that a miracle is needed, or else just pausing before a mystery, and the crucifixion is dreamy, because when you see that you're in a dream, that's the moment you wake up. You start to see not with the eyes, as if the vegetable life was all that was real, but through the eyes to the eternal life, that is shining radiant and present in all of life.

Jesus then embraces the Magdalene as Blake describes in Jerusalem the emanation of the giant Albion, when Jerusalem the divine spirit within us is a one identified with Mary Magdalene in fact and she says “art thou alive and live us down forevermore, or are thou not but a delusive shadow?” A thought that liveth not, she's tussling in this moment with her transformation, but it is a moment of her evolution, because she looks again and then says she can hear the truth of what Jesus is saying. When he says “I am the resurrection and the life” as Blake glosses that, Jesus says “I die and pass the limits of possibility.” That's the invitation that the resurrection presents to us. That's the heart of easter according to William Blake, and so this pattern starts to appear in other ways in Blake’s imagery.

For example, his image of David delivered out of many waters, with David in the waters beneath, bound down choruses of angels appearing, and then Jesus coming down from the sky with arms outstretched in cruciform form, displays the crucifix again as a moment of eternal vision. Because David in the waters has his arms outstretched, which he thought was, because he was bound, but now sees, as he sees his true life mirrored in the figure of the resurrected Jesus, has eternal life. It's a play in Blake’s image on psalm 18 which was originally a psalm, in which king David sings of his military victory, because he was righteous and so had Yahweh on his side Blake’s saying, no, no, this isn't really about some secular militaristic moment of triumph, it's a recognition that the soul is indeed righteous, that the human form divine does indeed dwell within us, and so we're with Christ already, when Easter is experienced in this visionary sense.

It leads to a glorious experience of the resurrection and the crucifixion, leading as much to apocalypse as anything else. Apocalypse in the true sense, the unveiling of the truth. Although again, apocalypse has all these negative connotations now, I think because the visionary sense of it is not probably understood. It leads instead to what Blake calls a horrible fear of the future, which is heuristics, this scientific approach to divine reality, the attempt to see say things through symbols, or to interpret the times, and then the prophecies become condemnations of what's going on. Rules return and moral law is imposed by the church, by Christianity, and attempts to try and control the future to shape it through rules and threats. The fires of hell never far from this. What gets lost in all this dark apocalypse is the true unveiling as a vision of the truth, and for Blake it's quite clear, it's a universal salvation. All are saved, although even putting it by that is not quite right, rather all will come to know, as they are known. They'll realize that creation is already full in the presence of God and what we're experiencing is the realization of that eternal sense in time. And it's not just about all human beings be saved, for Blake, it's also about the whole of the created order, knowing its divine life, as he writes in another part of Vala The Four Zoas,

“The Sun has left his blackness & has found a fresher morning
And the mild moon rejoices in the clear & cloudless night
And Man walks forth from midst of the fires the evil is all consumd
His eyes behold the Angelic spheres arising night & day
The stars consumd like a lamp blown out & in their stead behold
The Expanding Eyes of Man behold the depths of wondrous worlds
One Earth one sea beneath nor Erring Globes wander but Stars
Of fire rise up nightly from the Ocean & one Sun
Each morning like a New born Man issues with songs & Joy”


This is Blake showing how humanity has a pivotal place to play, because our consciousness of these things, presages the whole of creation becoming conscious of the divine light, and so the stars are blown out as mere physical objects, and instead become like the eyes of humanity. Wondrous worlds, the expanse of the cosmos, as seen, not as a dark nihilistic void, but as the expanse of the divine life, and so this changes as well the sense of the resurrection of the body.

The body comes to be known as a clothing of the divine form as we experience it now, as a kind of veil, a fallen vision of mental reality, though of course the funny thing about a veil, or the body, is that whilst it conceals, or also simultaneously reveals, something of the true form, you know like clothing both covers rendering opaque, but also promising beauty beneath the clothing. And this is Blake saying that even in fall and mistaken appropriations of easter life, the divine life still pushes through. You see it, in a way, in what happens with Jesus’s clothing on the cross, and how the soldiers greedily gamble for the clothing of the Christ thinking they might use it themselves, but then the clothing is abandoned in the tomb, as the radiant spiritual body appears. A true experience of the body reveals our souls, as Wittgenstein said, we don't approach each other as mere bodies, but as souls communicating, say when making love, and inwardly we know our bodies not as objects, but as the sight of our most intimate subjectivity, the place where we can say I am, and so the body becomes the place where the divine I AM might be detected as well. Resurrection as vision, as unveiling, in this way is contagious, Blake says. He tries to spread it by giving us a golden thread to wind into a ball, by saying behold, and the point about this is that when you start to see this vision, a kind of virtuous spiral of beholding can take hold of us. The upward power and thrust of the resurrection, what we behold, shapes who we become, Blake observes.

Which has a negative moment, when the resurrection is seen in the miraculous or mysterious way, we can get trapped in the scramble to prove it somehow happened, or to peer through its darkness, but positively of course, when you behold the vision, it draws you more and more into it, putting on Christ becomes possible. Originally a theatrical metaphor, like putting on a character, and so immersing in Christ is to become united with Christ in the resurrection, and as Blake says so many times, it's about a mental fight to awaken. It's about realizing something from within, and then seeing it manifest, without. It's a fight that doesn't have enemies, because it's not about contending for life, it's about sharing life. It's not about a victory, in which someone else gets defeated, even death, but instead is about forgiveness, when the arts that seemed deathly, are recognized as arts of life, and so Blake says to the Christians in Jerusalem the emanation of the giant Albion,

What is mortality but the things related to the body, which dies?
What is immortality but the things relating to the spirit, which lives eternally?
What is the joy of heaven but improvement in the things of the spirit?
What are the pains of hell but ignorance, bodily lust, idleness, and devastation of the things of the spirit?

This, he identified, as the risk of the way. Easter tends to be talked about it can lead to a devastation of the things of the spirit. It can lead to a mistaken notion of immortality, rather than an improvement in the things of the spirit, leading to the joy of heaven. And so, he concludes to the Christians on easter:

For hell is opened to heaven,
thine eyes beheld the dungeons burst and the prisoners set free
England awake, awake, awake!
Jerusalem, thy sister calls, why wilt thou sleep the sleep of death
and closer from thy ancient walls by hills and valleys
felt her feet gently upon their bosoms move
thy gates beheld sweet Zion’s ways
then was a time of joy and love and now the time returns again
o souls exalt and London’s towers receive the lamb of God
to dwell in England’s green and pleasant bowers


Last edited by Bob on Tue Apr 19, 2022 9:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
When you are out of touch with reality you will easily embrace a delusion, and equally put in doubt the most basic elements of existence. If this reminds you of the mindset of the present day materialist science and philosophy establishments, as well as of the loudest voices in the socio-political debate, we should not be particularly surprised, since they show all the signs of attending with the left hemisphere alone. I live in the hope that that may soon change: for without a change we are lost.
McGilchrist, Iain . The Matter With Things: Our Brains, Our Delusions and the Unmaking of the World (S.562). Perspectiva Press. Kindle-Version.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Bob » Tue Apr 19, 2022 9:14 am

felix dakat wrote:Douglas-Klotz's interpretations of Matthew 6:9 [usually translated "Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name."] are unitive. He also seems to have string theory of particle physics in mind. I suppose that to verify correctness of interpretation independently I would have to learn Aramaic. The same kind of problem occurs when reading the many disparate translations of the Tao Te Ching in English. Whatever we would have taken away from the teachings of Jesus had we been present as native speakers of Aramaic when he gave those talks, we have the text in the Koine that the authors used. The Jesus they presented was [obviously?] their version of Jesus. And can we be certain that the "dualism" that people read in the original Greek manuscripts and subsequent translations of the New Testament are being read from it not rather being read into it? These questions will be in mind as I read translations now.

I resonated with Douglas-Klotz because I read his book shortly after a series of talks with my friend, Raimund the Philologist, who I also invited to a meeting at my home with several young people from evangelical churches. Those talks were eye-opening, and I think they also imparted a bit of the fascination I had, although I doubt that it remained long.

Since then, reading Mark Vernon’s “A Secret History of Christianity” I came across this, talking about the development of the Greek language and thought, which wasn’t accepted at first, as we see in Socrates and other Philosophers who were condemned for heresy, he says that Greek also holds much to be unveiled:
In order to reclaim Plato’s inner music, it’s necessary to think carefully about the key words the ancient philosophers used so as to regain a sense of what his earlier reciprocal consciousness was driving at. One would be the word logos, and its derivatives. These are often translated as “word” or “reason” or “arguments.” But, as Barfield writes, “Reason is quite inadequate to convey to a twentieth-century imagination the cosmic process which Plato must have felt to be taking place – as much out in the world and among the stars as ‘within’ his own mind.” That’s one reason why the Logos was such a crucial realization. Similarly, nous is often translated as “mind” or “intellect,” words that easily erase what Plato evoked. For him, nous is a receptive capacity, a seat of awareness, as much associated with the heart as the head. It’s why love is such an essential capacity for the philosopher because philosophy is about feeling as well as thinking. Nous responds as much to beauty as logic. “Poetry is the cradle of philosophy,” averred John of Salisbury in this spirit. The training that Plato designed similarly incorporated an education in mathematics, dialectic and reason in order to develop the commensurate facilities of analogy, intuition and discernment. With that, you could learn of the relationship between life and death by contemplating the relationship between hot and cold. Barfield went so far as to advise that, nowadays, it is better at first to assume you’ve not understood what Plato meant by such words. Modern thought will probably have changed the meaning so radically that the first task is to “unthink” what you know ….

“It is not just a question of translating words,” Barfield continues, but of feeling “the way in which they came into being.” Plato treated words as if they might unveil reality. Their secret life could bring felt qualities to awareness. He, too, was a poet, and became very exercised when other poets squandered their gift.
Vernon, Mark. A Secret History of Christianity (S.71-73). John Hunt Publishing. Kindle-Version.

I have a growing feeling that we are overlooking much of what was implied by the words spoken by people two thousand and more years ago, and that the theological “order” that was created in the church has covered over much that would make more sense to us if we knew it. This comes out every time someone with knowledge of the ancient languages, or a different approach, takes the trouble to explain things.
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
When you are out of touch with reality you will easily embrace a delusion, and equally put in doubt the most basic elements of existence. If this reminds you of the mindset of the present day materialist science and philosophy establishments, as well as of the loudest voices in the socio-political debate, we should not be particularly surprised, since they show all the signs of attending with the left hemisphere alone. I live in the hope that that may soon change: for without a change we are lost.
McGilchrist, Iain . The Matter With Things: Our Brains, Our Delusions and the Unmaking of the World (S.562). Perspectiva Press. Kindle-Version.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby MagsJ » Wed Apr 27, 2022 8:34 pm

_
Well-worth the watch, plus.. it will have you laughing, in places. :)

Video, courtesy of KTS: https://odysee.com/emj-debate-720:4e772 ... ?src=embed
The possibility of anything we can imagine existing is endless and infinite.. ~MagsJ

I haven't got the time to spend the time reading something that is telling me nothing, as I will never be able to get back that time, and I may need it for something important at some point in time.. Huh!? ~MagsJ

You’re suggestions and I just simply don’t mix.. like oil on water, or a very bad DJ ~MagsJ

Examine what is said, not him who speaks ~Arab proverb

aes Sanātana Dharma Pali: the eternal way ~it should not be rigid, but inclusive of the best of all knowledge for the sake of Ṛta.. which is endless.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Bob » Thu Apr 28, 2022 9:32 am

MagsJ wrote:_
Well-worth the watch, plus.. it will have you laughing, in places. :)

Video, courtesy of KTS: https://odysee.com/emj-debate-720:4e772 ... ?src=embed

Thanks for you contribution, and yes, we must also address such theories if we want to do the job properly.

One big problem I have with such theories is that the outcome is assumed to have been the intention that was developed hundreds of years before. The single-minded determination that would have been necessary for such a plot to be pursued over centuries hasn’t been found anywhere, and in fact the contributions from surrounding traditions are unmissable.

Another is the fact that the people criticising these traditions are mostly by far not so sophisticated as the traditions themselves are. I think I have shown that there is indeed a Jewish root, specifically in the Aramaic/Hebrew that was superseded by Greek, but the depth of the original language was always suggested by Paul and John, who supposedly knew both languages. The degree to which the ideas were developed may have been blurred by the church under Constantine, when developing mainline Christianity, but it always pops up in archaeological finds throughout the last few hundred years. Certainly, later the Church diversified beyond what Adam Green has assumed.

Besides which, Green is a materialist and literalist, who has absolutely no concept of mythology and allegorical writings, poetry and fable seem to confuse him, his reading of the “signs” of the Bible is primitive and paradigm changes that progress throughout Judaism and Christianity is completely left out of the picture. I’m not a friend of Dr E Michael Jones either, a traditionalist Catholic theologian who holds a litany of antisemitic and misogynistic views. So, in the end, I wasn’t laughing but rather wincing at these two people, who tended to remain by the conflict between Christianity and Judaism, rather than develop a conversation on the deeper sophistication of both traditions.

They met on a ground that I feel extremely uneasy with, because it is a blinkered view of humanity, leaving out the deep traditions of the rest of the world, especially of India and China, but also numerous others, as though the biblical tradition that concentrates on the middle east was a comprehensive account of the human development in the world.
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
When you are out of touch with reality you will easily embrace a delusion, and equally put in doubt the most basic elements of existence. If this reminds you of the mindset of the present day materialist science and philosophy establishments, as well as of the loudest voices in the socio-political debate, we should not be particularly surprised, since they show all the signs of attending with the left hemisphere alone. I live in the hope that that may soon change: for without a change we are lost.
McGilchrist, Iain . The Matter With Things: Our Brains, Our Delusions and the Unmaking of the World (S.562). Perspectiva Press. Kindle-Version.
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Re: Approaching an Analysis of Jesus of Nazareth

Postby Bob » Sun May 08, 2022 11:38 am

Luther “… failed to make Paul’s move and come to welcome his weaknesses as reminders of God’s strength and instead grew intensely suspicious of any presumed divine intimacy. He desired a relationship with God that was not about reciprocity and union but utter dependency, secured not from within but without. He found that security in the pages of the Bible, read not imaginatively but literally. Sola scriptura became his cry. Only scripture could shine with “a spiritual light far clearer than the sun,” he insisted.” Vernon, Mark. A Secret History of Christianity (S.152). John Hunt Publishing. Kindle-Version.


At this point, Mark Vernon summarizes the main error that I believe separates the Protestant church from the New Testament mindset and refutes the statement that "… the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life." (2 Corinthians 3:6)

By asserting "sola scriptura," he (perhaps unwittingly) made the New Testament narratives a law that had to be obeyed, causing the rise of fundamentalist thinking that struggles between the spirit of love and the letter of the Word, regularly neglecting the former. Spiritual intimacy is equally suspect to Protestants today, though to varying degrees. Instead, it became important to see the historicity of the Bible in a new sense and to accept its reliability, which, however, disintegrated after thorough examination in the following centuries. Later, the Historical-Critical Method discovered the compositional character of the Bible, which in itself is not a problem unless one relies on its chronological credibility.

Of course, it is difficult to overlook the secular developments that began in parallel with the Reformation and gave us the scientific revolution that forms the basis of our modern society. However, this was also a clear turn toward materialism and machinery that led people to view everything as a series of "cogs and wheels" and to see the enchanted world of the past as archaic and in need of replacement. This was further emphasized in the course of historical criticism, and the later "revivals" were a Christian version of the later Islamic revolutions, designed to protect the fundamentalist views Luther had invoked.

Today, struggling to reclaim the sacred, we are disillusioned with the materialist version of the world, disenchanted and bereft of our mythological narratives, pitied for our ritual re-enactments of a transcendental journey, and ridiculed for our belief in the spiritual that underlies all reality. The awareness of a truth between the lines, the mystical perception of a presence in which we "live and move and have our being," the magic of poetry and music - all these are moments of the "in-between," where the Spirit remains elusive but leaves a trace where it touches us. This was also an experience of the early Christians and a motivation to accept oppression in the awareness that they are part of a kingdom that is not easily seen or experienced except through grace.

Mark Vernon points out that it was …
“Paul’s contemporary, Seneca, [who] wrote: “God is near you, he is with you, he is within you ... God comes into men.” Their sages stressed that all people are God’s offspring, God’s kin, because God is the one “in whom we live and move and have our being.” A Secret History of Christianity (S.135). John Hunt Publishing. Kindle-Version.


This shows me that the world of thought was already changing to encompass a “reciprocal participation,” the Barfield expression that Vernon quotes, describing the mindset of Jesus and his followers. It is this transformation by the “renewal of [our] mind,” [Romans 12:2) and a change of perspective, as against the immediacy of feeling caught up in a drama, like the way people thought up until then, that I feel we need to return. We have the benefit of all the developments of the modern world, but risk losing it all if we fail to regain a reciprocal participation with existence.
The only wisdom we can hope to acquire
Is the wisdom of humility: humility is endless.
TS Eliot
When you are out of touch with reality you will easily embrace a delusion, and equally put in doubt the most basic elements of existence. If this reminds you of the mindset of the present day materialist science and philosophy establishments, as well as of the loudest voices in the socio-political debate, we should not be particularly surprised, since they show all the signs of attending with the left hemisphere alone. I live in the hope that that may soon change: for without a change we are lost.
McGilchrist, Iain . The Matter With Things: Our Brains, Our Delusions and the Unmaking of the World (S.562). Perspectiva Press. Kindle-Version.
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