The aim of this blog is not to undermine anyone’s faith or their specific religious belief. Nor should it be viewed as an attempt to diminish or destroy some of the worlds’ organized religions. Religions have and continue to contribute much to benefit humankinds spiritual growth and understanding of our common Creator. However, it seems to me that this understanding is very much a dynamic and must undergo various evolutionary changes that will finally bring about the promised salvation and peace to our planet and indeed the entire universe.
As adults we cannot continue to depend on a childlike faith. Similarly we cannot continue to depend on old fashioned ideas or concepts that alienate people from each other and from their Creator. A new age is dawning. A new way of seeing is necessary. Where once we sought a false and enforced form of unity we must now find ways to learn through each other’s religious diversity.
I am learning that one of the key factors that prevents us from ‘seeing’ is our inability to see with our heart rather than the ego or the False Self. On the other hand the True Self is simply seeing or recognizing the ‘God within’ ourselves and all others.
Perhaps no where else is this better expressed than by Dr. David R. Hawkins, in his book ‘From Which Nothing is Hidden, (2001) as follows:
Religion As A Source of Spiritual Error
There are two sources of error stemming from traditional 'true' religions. The first is simply misunderstanding or misinterpretation of the specific teachings of the original great teacher. Because the original listeners, or followers, were not themselves enlightened, the original teachings were contaminated by their ego’s. This then became magnified by subsequent translators and scribes down through the generations. The warp often is due to the fact that the ego has a tendency to be literal in its hearing of the word rather than the spirit or essence of a teaching. Any translation that teaches anything other than peace or love is in error. This is a basic rule and easy to spot.
The second and more prevalent gross distortions are spiritual teachings which arise from what is usually referred to as 'church doctrine.' These regulations, often in the form of guilt-provoking prohibitions, were actually totally made up by church officials and supposed authorities who, in reality, had no claim to authority at all but instead had acquired political power in the structure of the institutions at the time.
There is no authentic or plausible reason to modify the precise teaching of an original great teacher for some ostensible gain. As obvious as it may seem, it has not been clear through the centuries that to be a Christian, for example, means simply to exactly follow Christ's teachings. All the great teachers teach nonviolence, non-condemnation, and unconditional love. It is hard to see how any alleged ecclesiastic authority could violate these basic truisms supposedly for 'the good of the faith', or 'the good of the church', or the 'elimination of infidelities,' or 'just' wars.
There are many subjects not addressed in original spiritual teachings, thus creating the opportunity for fallacious religious elaborations. All kinds of 'sins' have been invented over the centuries, with elaborate explanations and rationalizations which can only be described clinically as rather sick manipulations of natural human affairs. The harm that resulted was not only spiritual error but also psychological cruelty and the blanket guilt of humanity. This focus on guilt and sin further condemns human consciousness by reinforcing the dilemma of the opposites and the duality of perception. This latter destructive effect on human consciousness takes man farther away from God and creates a barrier that is transcended only by the very few who have to be almost spiritual geniuses in order to succeed in escaping the coercive trap of elaborate fallacies.
A further destructive effect of the promulgations of some religious doctrine is that it creates the very basis for terrible wars and persecutions. These are always based on religious differences which are exaggerated in importance in order to justify religiously sanctioned mayhem. These misinterpretations and deviations are especially notable in the murky religious meddling with sexuality, procreation, child-rearing, diet, details of daily living, customs, dress, and political power.
Wearing different kinds of clothing, hats, or facial hair is enough to fuel religious persecution or war. Circumcision, not eating meat on Fridays, saying grace before meals, and dates and details of religious holidays all become ammunition. Whether the Sabbath is Saturday or Sunday becomes more important than the truth. Whether wearing a hat or no hat shows respect for God becomes an hoary issue.
By exploiting trivialities at the cost of ignoring the main thrust of spiritual truth, religions contribute to their own downfall and that of all humanity. Much that is revered as church doctrine is really the product of the ego. If it is true, as Jesus said, that evil is in the eye of the beholder, then those who see sin and evil everywhere are themselves the problem. In Victorian times, even the leg of a table was considered to be a temptation and had to be discretely covered with a drape.
Much of what has traditionally been described as sin is really the guilt-ridden exaggerations held in the mind of some emotionally disturbed church authority. Adherence to the admonition, "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone," would silence all these misappropriations of spiritual truth.
Collectively, these distortions of spiritual truth have paradoxically condemned both God and human nature in the name of "Divinity." To usurp that authority and make pronouncements in the name of God seems rather grandiose and delusional. No one who had ever experienced the absolute reality of the presence of God could ever make such distorted statements.