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brooklyn_born wrote:
It would be a cool topic to discuss. I think it was broached here several months ago. I'd have to comb through the archive to find it. If I find it, I will resurrect the thread, otherwise be on the lookout for a new thread on the topic. I am a bit busy so it may take a while though.


Alright. Looking forward to it. Thanks.


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Yes, again, you are right Katro. But I think that I have seen and experienced mercy for myself. I admire greatly when people choose to help another worker to pay off his debts, and set on the path of acquiring tools & capital for his own purposes. I see you are right about patronage being a precedent, but in and of itself not constituting this high ideal of what the authors call mercy. But it really helps when you can see that a person really wants to build wealth. A person must learn to ask for good things, to ask for supervision when necessary. However, even in realising the opportunities that one already has, I know and remember how others have been merciful to me.

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SEla_Kelly wrote:
Yes, again, you are right Katro. But I think that I have seen and experienced mercy for myself. I admire greatly when people choose to help another worker to pay off his debts, and set on the path of acquiring tools & capital for his own purposes. I see you are right about patronage being a precedent, but in and of itself not constituting this high ideal of what the authors call mercy. But it really helps when you can see that a person really wants to build wealth. A person must learn to ask for good things, to ask for supervision when necessary. However, even in realising the opportunities that one already has, I know and remember how others have been merciful to me.


I'm not sure patronage is a precedent to mercy. According to the reference patronage is false mercy, a second cousin to it. But I do believe there are some folks who are capable of mercy, those who have grown spiritually through the required steps outlined. The reference is clear that one cannot exhibit mercy in and of itself without having traversed the four preceding steps in the order specified: being just, being fair, being patient, and being kind. Mercy is a gift. It can't be earned, but it can be learned. Like you, some of my most cherished memories are of those individuals in my life who were just, fair, patient and kind to me. There have been only a few who really shine and they made an enormous impact on me and the course of my life. So I agree, it's important to remember these things, to hold onto them and make every effort to have the same positive impact on others. It clearly makes a huge difference.

References for mercy being a gift: (314.6) 28:6.7; (1639.3) 146:2.8 7; (1903.4) 174:5.7


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SEla_Kelly wrote:
But grace is not an emotional status, but one that can only be experienced in an active growth state wherein the human is focused on loving others, and naturally the experience of grace can be felt when the ascender is engaged in the activities of doing God's will. It occurs when a human individual himself has the opportunity to be merciful, through his encounters with other individuals, and this experience of grace can be felt while the human mind is in the mode of work/prayer.


I agree, and again, I think this experience centers around selflessness. It appears that the ability to show mercy is dependent upon the attainment of a level of selflessness, which I think can be called a "state of grace".

(1573.7) 140:5.5 He first talked about those who were poor in spirit, hungered after righteousness, endured meekness, and who were pure in heart. Such spirit-discerning mortals could be expected to attain such levels of divine selflessness as to be able to attempt the amazing exercise of fatherly affection; that even as mourners they would be empowered to show mercy, promote peace, and endure persecutions, and throughout all of these trying situations to love even unlovely mankind with a fatherly love. A father’s affection can attain levels of devotion that immeasurably transcend a brother’s affection.

It's interesting that the Spirit of Truth is also called a "bestowal of selflessness". I interpret this to mean the Spirit of Truth is a gift of grace. The acceptance of the Spirit of Truth within the heart and soul undoubtedly augments, or is "freely admixed" with the four faith attitudes expressed in the reference above.

(2065.7) 194:3.19 The coming of the Spirit of Truth purifies the human heart and leads the recipient to formulate a life purpose single to the will of God and the welfare of men. The material spirit of selfishness has been swallowed up in this new spiritual bestowal of selflessness.


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Continuing on the idea of selflessness. It seems to me in the references below Jesus is drawing a clear distinction between selfishness and unselfishness in his comments about the parable of the talents. Unselfishness is about giving back, about giving the “truth of heaven” which also increases the light of "saving grace". I think it is safe to make this link between grace and unselfishness, even selflessness. I venture to also make a link between unselfishness and salvation, as in "saving grace".

(1918.2) 176:3.9 And how much like all selfish mortals was this unfaithful servant with the one talent in that he blamed his slothfulness directly upon his lord. How prone is man, when he is confronted with the failures of his own making, to put the blame upon others, oftentimes upon those who least deserve it!

1918.3) 176:3.10 Said Jesus that night as they went to their rest: “Freely have you received; therefore freely should you give of the truth of heaven, and in the giving will this truth multiply and show forth the increasing light of saving grace, even as you minister it.”


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