MUSINGS ON MY NEW BOOK “BUILDING HEAVEN ON EARTH: CLAIMING OUR HUMAN SPIRIT”

I HAVE KNOWN THAT WRITING ABOUT OUR HUMAN SPIRIT WOULD BE A BIT UNSETTLING FOR MANY PEOPLE WHOSE SPIRITUALITY IS INEXTRICABLY BONDED WITH THEIR RELIGIONS.  BUT THE MORE I WROTE ABOUT CLAIMING OUR SPIRITUALITY APART FROM RELIGION, THE MORE CLEAR IT BECAME THAT THERE WAS MUCH TO CRITICIZE ABOUT THERE UNQUESTIONED TRADITIONS AND THE HOLD THEY HAVE WITHIN THEIR RESPECTIVE CULTURES.

I WAS TRESPASSING THIS UNSPOKEN TABOO AND REALIZING THAT THESE RIGID AND ARCHAIC TRADITIONS OF SUPERNATURAL BELIEFS WERE KEEPING US STUCK IN OUR OWN PASSIVE COMPLIANCE. WE HAVE BEEN CONDITIONED TO ZIP OUR LIPS AND NOT CONTRADICT THE OUTWORN AND IRRELEVANT DOCTRINES BURIED IN THEIR ANCIENT SCRIPTURES.  THE HISTORY OF THESE CULTURAL NORMS IS ROOTED IN OUR LOYALTY TO THE VALUES OF OUR FAMILIES AND COMMUNITIES, AND TO CHALLENGE THESE IS TO INVITE BECOMING AN OUTCAST.

BUT I BELIEVE WE ARE BEGINNING TO SEE AND TO UNDERSTAND THE HISTORICAL PATTERNS THAT RELIGIONS PLAY IN KEEPING US FROM BUILDING PEACEFUL BRIDGES WITH OTHER CULTURES.  UNLESS WE FIND AND BUILD THESE BRIDGES, AND DISCARD OUR BLIND AND UNQUESTIONED LOYALTY, WE WILL KEEP THE GATES OPEN TO UNENDING WARS.

BELIEVING IN A GOD THAT IS SUPERNATURAL, IN HUMAN FORM, AND LIVING IN A HEAVEN IN THE SKY, CONTRADICTS ALL THAT WE CAN OBSERVE AND KNOW. THE BELIEF THAT WE WILL HAVE AN AFTERLIFE IN THAT HEAVEN IS A DEGRADATION TO THE AMAZING FACT OF BEING ALIVE AND FULLY PRESENT ON OUR MAGNIFICENT PLANET RIGHT NOW.  EVERYTHING THAT IS SACRED IS ALREADY HERE.  WE DO NEED SUPERNATURAL STORIES OF VIRGIN BIRTHS, WALKING ON WATER, RAISING THE DEAD, AND ANGELS SINGING IN THE HEAVENS ABOVE IN ORDER TO DISCOVER OUR SPIRITUALITY.  GOD DOES NOT BELONG TO RELIGION!

FOR TOO LONG, WE HAVE YIELDED MATTERS OF OUR HUMAN SPIRIT WITHIN TO OUR RELIGIOUS INSTITUTIONS.  I HOPE YOU WILL FOLLOW  MY BLOGS IN THE FOLLOWING WEEKS TO EXPLORE AND DISCUSS THE  RICHNESS OF A NATURAL FORCE OF GOD WITHIN, AND THE TREASURE OF DISCOVERING THE WISDOM OF YOUR OWN SOUL.

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