Posts Tagged With: religion

If God Can’t Protect You, Buy A Gun!

With the recent surge in gun sales, mainstream media coverage, social discussions on gun rights, and legislation soon to come to address the issue of gun control; I would like to write about something I have observed regarding this matter.

I find it ironic, to say the least, that the initiating contributor of a surge in gun sales, is an act of catastrophic gun violence. Many people offer claims like “guns don’t kill people, people with guns kill people”, while making their purchase of a gun.

I understand that it was not the shooting at Sandy Hook which inspired people to purchase guns in droves. The event at Sandy Hook Elementary was merely a catalyst toward a widespread fear of coming legislation which will cause greater difficulty in future gun purchases for ordinary citizens. Citizens who wish to arm themselves for their own protection. And who is the main group of people who seem to be in such fear of tyrannical government that they should seek the gun to be their defense? Christianity, at least in my observations.

From researching articles, meeting with people, church groups, and social media research, I have found that the driving force behind the pro-gun, NRA, seems to be largely based in Christianity, at least the professed form of the religion.

It seems incredibly odd to me how the evangelical Christian force in America, seems so starkly different than the one whom they claim to follow and believe – Jesus Christ. The Prince of Peace, whose USA followers are most often the most fervent supporters of war and military engagement, also cling to their guns citing causes of liberty. However, what about the many other causes of liberty, which seem to either be ignored or unknown?

To believe in Christ, God, and the Holy Spirit, is to believe that they are the sources of all Truth and power. But to believe that in order to protect yourself from the evils of this world; tyrannical government, intruders of your property, etc., you would have to believe that you yourself is the one with power to defend yourselves; thus impugning God of all power. We either believe that love has power over hate, peace has power over violence, and compassion has power over greed; or, we believe that we ourselves can take that power into our own hands, forsaking our belief in the power of God.

So, If God can’t protect you, buy a gun!

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Categories: Politics & Government, Religion & Philosophy, Writings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

The Real Church

The real church is not found within a building, or even the people who gather within a building. The real church, if we’re really looking, is found on the streets, in the world, and wherever love is being shared with compassion for one another.

“Church” is simply a word. And we can interpret a meaning of that word in ways which get to the heart of what it should mean. For many, including myself, the initial images which come to mind when hearing the word “church” is of pastors, Christians, and everything I was taught through my religious upbringing to believe that church indeed was. It was the place I would go to on Sunday’s and Wednesday evening to see friends, play games, play music, speak or listen to a message, go to eat afterward, and then go home – that was church.

We could say that “church” itself was simply the gathering with friends, who shared the same belief I had been trained to uphold. But this, I believe lacks in truth of what church actually is. I believe that church should not be as separate from the world. What I mean is, Christians have interpreted a scripture stating “Therefore come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you.” (2 Corinthians 6:17) to mean that we should be separate, in all aspects. Relationships have divided over beliefs, both within the church and with the world. The people whom people within the church spend their time are most often those who attend the same group. Yet Jesus himself did not conduct relationships in this way. Certainly, he spent a large portion of his time with his disciples and followers, but he also spent his time dining with those considered to be “sinners”, drunkards, and the like. I do not believe he spent his time with them with an agenda to convert them to his religion, but he simply loved them for who they were. Because with that genuine humanity, filled with simple love, dwells the power and grace for people to actually change.

The real church is seen when people share friendship with compassion for one another. When a person who may be judged negatively by society, is treated with tremendous value and honor. The real church does not look to grow their numbers, attract new visitors, or create a better Sunday performance, it possesses no performance at all. There is no show, no marketing, no media, and no strategy. It is simple love being shared between human beings. That is the church I wish to see come alive and thrive in our world. The church of compassion.

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Poverty: The Greatest Crime of Humanity

We are told that poverty is a natural part of our world. We are told poverty will always exist. But my vision for life, our world, and our species call humanity, begins from a place of highest truth. Some call this place heaven, God, enlightenment, nirvana, and a slew of other terms which people throughout history have attributed to this place of peace and bliss.

I believe in the existence of this metaphysical reality, not in terms of an afterlife (nor do I disbelieve in an afterlife), but in terms of a well from which truth is drawn into the physical world. And if truth may be drawn from this realm of peace, are there any limitations on how much truth we may be able to drink and see evidenced in the earth? I believe not.

Let us consider the spiritual aspects which I believe exist in the realm of truth: peace, freedom, giving, compassion, joy, bliss, and contentment. All aspects of truth are found in the source of all things which is love. All aforementioned aspects occur from a place of simple love for one another. Love for all people and love for all of life. Can we say these words of love; peace and joy, are things which can be physically witnessed? Do we not call a tree a “tree” and a house a “house”? The words of love therefore are describing that which cannot be seen by the physical eye, but requires us to use imagination, faith, and the eye of our own heart.

We know the reality within words of love in many forms. We understand compassion when one gives of themselves for another’s well being. We are told that compassion is unnatural, however this is quite simply a lie which has become reality as it has been believed. Compassion, when known, becomes a most natural practice as it arises from our true human nature. It is believed by many that our nature is bent toward greed or “sin” as some call it, but we must reconnect with who we truly are, who we were at birth.

To know God is to understand ourselves. If we know God to be hateful, we will believe ourselves to be hateful. If we know God to be a liar, we will believe ourselves a liar. Many attempt to separate themselves from God, believing that God is good, yet we are bad. But to believe that would be to believe that a good creator would create something bad. The words of love, I believe are all that are worth attributing to God in the reality of which we live.
How do we reconnect with our true nature?

Re-connection to our true nature begins with the understanding that all questions are not only permissible, but necessary for understanding truth. Absolute truth is not found within a given answer, but in the questions we examine. When answers to questions are received they are not “end points” to our search for truth in a given subject, rather; they bring us to a new level of greater questions.

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Are We Killing Kids’ Dreams?

I firmly believe that within the heart of every child is pure, true, dream that is at the core of who that person was made to be. As kids we had things we enjoyed and were naturally adept to accomplish – and still not take it too seriously. But somewhere along the way we are given the understanding that we need to “grow up” and our lives from that point become about achieving a measure of security (I would call it false security) found in a good paying job that will provide for a comfortable life. A life that our parents can rest easy with knowing their child lives in a neighborhood with a low crime rate, “good” schools for their 2.6 children and is at least mildly successful according to the measures of success we are given by the business culture society which dominated the earthly mindset.

But what happened to that child’s dream? What happened to the time when all things were truly possible, albeit not without taking a chance and a risk. Taking chances doesn’t always workout, and can lead to being in less than what some would call “safe” places. But every chance we take has a tremendous value within in and even if taking that chance goes south, we learn so much about who we are and grow out of that with stories and experience to pass on to others.

I don’t remember exploring being a conscious goal of mine as a child, but I do remember being an explorer riding my bicycle with training wheels all over town, wishing to go beyond the confines of the city limits (“limits” is a word I don’t do well with).There have certainly been times in my life when “The American Dream” has attempted and nearly succeeded in restricting me from realizing that dream I held as a child. But all things work as they should. I encourage you to continue seeking your dreams no matter what the cost. You may be in a body right now but it is your spirit that is the real you. It is your spirit that is naturally bent toward the dreams placed within your heart. Follow that heart. Follow the spirit. Follow your dreams.

Categories: Money & Resources, Politics & Government, Religion & Philosophy, Writings | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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