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I just wanted to briefly cover an aspect the UB warns about (specifically Jesus) from the angle of my personal experience. In fact, I wanted to bump an older thread someone mentioned that apparently was entitled "What does it mean: to be 'wise as serpents yet as harmless as doves"...but the search function shows no such thread. Hopefully this will be interesting to ponder, or helpful for newer readers.

The first thing you feel once discovering the UB is that state of walking on air, like a honeymoon phase. You want to share, give, and generally love everyone! I was very naive with this. While I definitely had the innocent as a dove dialed in, the wise as a serpent part was not. I would wonder why this even mattered? The experiences that followed shows why. I didn't fully understand that saying of Jesus. It seemed unnecessarily negative, which was opposite to my desire to be optimistic and embracing of all people. Considering the fact I'd just gotten out of a cult where the general narrow mindset was "us against them", I found it refreshing that the Jesus papers opens the mind so much to humanity...however, here Jesus was telling us not to be too trusting! In theory I understood, but in practice/experience I was lacking. We cannot be naive; spirit is naturally giving, whereas the animal is naturally selfish.

Jesus used this expression in different contexts. One example was to show our attitude towards enemies of the message (you are sheep amongst wolves).

https://www.urantia.org/urantia-book-st ... e#U140_9_3

The other context seems to be more about how we see society in general - that not everyone is deserving of our kindness:

https://www.urantia.org/urantia-book-st ... #U140_8_13

He describes indiscriminate kindness as being the reason for many social evils! Quite a profound statement.

Anyway, on with the story...

In my experience, it was regarding a neighbour of mine (a few doors down), and it illustrated this point very succinctly. I'm the type who will look for the best in people, and the UB is very dear to me in that regard. I'm always trying to put myself in other people's shoes. Some would say I can be a doormat....to which in my mind I'd be like "yeah, but aren't I supposed to be selfless?!". I'm always rationalising why something may be the case, and naturally sway towards having an inferiority complex. If someone has been unkind to me I don't tend to be as reactive as most - I'll reason within myself why they've behaved in the way they have. My neighbour began over the years to exploit this. My business is in property maintenance, therefore it's very easy for me to find ways in which to be of service, even to the point of detriment to my health/wellbeing. Some people are leaches, always taking such as my neighbour! I began to see the patterns in him and wasn't blind - most people dislike him (i.e. he's ex army and lords this over people, arrogant, bitter, a bully...you name it).

Despite all these traits, I merely saw a challenge! "I'll conquer the evil with the good", so I thought. I could clearly see the way he was using me, but I thought that little by little he'd change when he got a taste of the better side of humanity. He had no job (he couldn't keep one, was always getting fired....e.g. last one he was fired for threatening another member of staff) and I was the opposite; starting up my company from scratch, working all the hours under the sun and still finding time to help him out. The biggest job I ever did for him (the only job where I charged him...i.e. peanuts) was ripping out an old/leaking bath with a new shower. Needless to say, the type of help I gave (e.g. fixing leaks for free, building fences etc) was by no means pocket change to me - it wiped me out.

Long story short, this man did nothing to show any real gratitude, quite the opposite (always finding fault in neighbours, had delusions of power and generally bullied people to get what he wanted). Before this case I had a very innocent view of people, seeing their ills as a matter of circumstance and not conniving, scheming, extreme selfishness or getting pleasure from seeing others in pain. This neighbour would sneak off and report my wife and I to different authorities ranging from environmental health to the police with all kinds of ridiculous (false) accusations. We were harrassed to the point of wanting to leave and not feeling safe in our own home. There were several occasions where this neighbour stole from us, and would sneak around the garden while we were on holiday. If someone had tried to make me aware of the darker side to humanity (not just the extremes like Hitler) I'd accuse them of being small-minded and lacking in tolerance. Then I'd say not to judge.

Why does this matter? Because it saps your "spiritual energy" if you're not careful! People like this exist:

https://www.urantia.org/urantia-book-st ... #U140_8_12

He did not teach his apostles that they were to be imposed upon by social parasites or professional alms-seekers

It took me a long time to recover from this abuse, and even to this day I have my back up when it comes to strangers. I became very cynical of people in a poor state, speculating that they probably don't make the effort to improve their situation and therefore deserve it. It made me question my faith, it made me go the opposite extreme and see the bad in people! That's why you need to be cautious as serpents - for your own spiritual protection. It may seem contradictory (to help the unfortunate, but be aware not to be kind to everyone), however it's about discernment. I'm on the road to recovery and finding that balance again. The bitterness and negativity is hard to get over, I don't feel the same.

During my periods of quiet/meditation I came to the realisation that you need to spiritually recharge. Perhaps that was the thought adjuster bringing it up into my mind. I realised that you need to feel God's love before you can pass it on, and you need to be give yourself a break. I tried to surpass/ignore myself and merely became an empty shell/tool to conduct love energy. That's not the way it should be, one needs to absorb it first then reflect it. In my excitement over the treasure of the UB, I forgot that I also needed to heal.


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BrotherP wrote:
It took me a long time to recover from this abuse, and even to this day I have my back up when it comes to strangers. I became very cynical of people in a poor state, speculating that they probably don't make the effort to improve their situation and therefore deserve it. It made me question my faith, it made me go the opposite extreme and see the bad in people! That's why you need to be cautious as serpents - for your own spiritual protection. It may seem contradictory (to help the unfortunate, but be aware not to be kind to everyone), however it's about discernment. I'm on the road to recovery and finding that balance again. The bitterness and negativity is hard to get over, I don't feel the same.


I've experienced something similar, and it was quite painful too. However, I think I learned a different lesson from it. I realized that I was trying to accomplish something that would "make me selfless". What I realized is that you can't be selfless if you're thinking about being selfless. You really have to put all your effort into understanding the other person, top to bottom. If you're doing that, you're not thinking about yourself.

The person I thought I was helping was actually using me, but was very clever in disguising it so it wasn't obvious at first. But there was an undeniable underlying feeling that things weren't "right". Thank you wisdom. The more questions I asked, the more I probed in an attempt to understand, the more truth I discovered. Then the question became, how do I do what is best for this person according to the Father's will? What is fatherly love in this circumstance? Can I see this person with the same heart and mind as the Father would see? With a lot of prayer and reflection it became obvious and all worked out to both our benefit in the end. I kept my respect without losing any respect for the other person, and vice versa. Win-Win. That was a beautiful lesson. It took years but it was worth every moment of effort and every penny spent. I think we both grew from the experience.

On the other hand, there are people out there who would not benefit from the effort. They have to be recognized somehow. I'm always reminded of the time that Jesus took one look at Annas and walked away knowing it was futile to engage. I think it is quite possible to develop the same skills at recognizing pride and self-importance.

(1596:2)142:0.2   The first day in Jerusalem Jesus called upon his friend of former years, Annas, the onetime high priest and relative of Salome, Zebedee’s wife. Annas had been hearing about Jesus and his teachings, and when Jesus called at the high priest’s home, he was received with much reserve. When Jesus perceived Annas’s coldness, he took immediate leave, saying as he departed: “Fear is man’s chief enslaver and pride his great weakness; will you betray yourself into bondage to both of these destroyers of joy and liberty?” But Annas made no reply. The Master did not again see Annas until the time when he sat with his son-in-law in judgment on the Son of Man.

In the case of your military vet, I'm sure he had psychiatric issues revolving around pride and self-importance, the need to be dominant. But in my friend, the dominance was subliminal and centered around a feeling of being righteous and good while at the same time manipulating and deviant in order to make it appear so at my expense. Very clever and sneaky, hence the need for the wise as serpent warning, the caution to understand every nuance of behavior, each little movement, tendency or preference. The signals are there to see if we are willing to look. The secret is to look with fatherly love rather than suspicion. Not easy; it takes practice and it's not always perfect. It's definitely a thing of evolution.


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I just wanted to briefly cover an aspect the UB warns about (specifically Jesus) from the angle of my personal experience. In fact, I wanted to bump an older thread someone mentioned that apparently was entitled "What does it mean: to be 'wise as serpents yet as harmless as doves"...but the search function shows no such thread. Hopefully this will be interesting to ponder, or helpful for newer readers.


For what it's worth, Gurdjieff pointed to an allegory about the dual nature of mankind - the Wolf and the Sheep. I couldn't find the quote about that, but came across this:

Once there lived a wolf who slaughtered a great many sheep and reduced many people to tears. At length, I do not know why, he suddenly felt qualms of conscience and begun to repent his life; so he decided to reform and to slaughter no more sheep. In order to do this seriously he went to a priest and asked him to hold a thanksgiving service.

The priest began the service and the wolf stood weeping and praying in the church. The service was long. The wolf had slaughtered many of the priests sheep, therefore the priest prayed earnestly that the wolf would indeed reform. Suddenly the wolf looked through a window and saw that sheep were being driven home. He began to fidget but the priest went on and on without end.

At last the wolf could contain himself no longer and he shouted: ‘Finish it priest! Or all the sheep will be driven home and I shall be left without super!

This is a very good fairy tale because it describes man very well. He is ready to sacrifice everything, but after all today's dinner is a different matter.

A man always wishes to begin with something big. But this is impossible; there can be no choice, we must begin with the things of today.


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Here's a link to a related thread: "How does one actually become "wise as a serpent"?"

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=3310&hilit=serpent


A great topic and most difficult one too!! The admonitions about pearls before swine, wolves in sheep's wool, and false sympathy are wonderful lessons about mortal wisdom and discernment.

I have often found myself jilted or disappointed by being taken advantage of as I too wear rose colored glasses and my glass is always half full and never half empty and I can see blue sky at midnight!!! But just because my naivety is exposed and disappointed does not deter this hopeful optimism...however, it has tempered my blind enthusiasm and blind trust of those who suffer as being apparent victims.

Much, perhaps even most, of the victims and suffering in this world is definitely due to the hand and choice of those who so suffer. Am I to solve problems that are self created by the immaturity and foolishness and otherwise bad choices of someone else who then suffers the consequences and repercussions of those choices?

Why should I suffer as well by their choices or choose to serve those who have not learned by their consequences to make better choices? Who then am I truly helping?? No one. I am, rather, harming and holding back and rewarding bad choices thusly. It is neither brotherly nor paternal to alleviate the suffering of that self-imposed upon one's self!!

It is not love. It is but false sympathy. Or at least unwise and undiscriminating sympathy....it is harmful to me and to those I hope to succor and aid.

This also and still means I cannot or should not withhold sympathy and loving service from the deserving. I must not become cynical and cold. Truly is the world filled with those who suffer at the hands of others and the indifference and unfairness and injustice imposed upon them by others or by systems of impersonal and tragic consequences.

But there is only so much resource of ME to give...so I should 'see' and discern the better opportunities among the good opportunities to serve and not waste love and service resources on those who will not respond and who are within a hole of their own digging!! They must learn better. Helping them is NOT helping them.

So these life lessons described here so generously and eloquently all speak to this need for wisdom and discernment and to look for the flicker or flash of light within and to seek the hope and faith in others that we might feed that...and to see the greed and deceit and guile of those who seek only advantage and who see all others as pigeons for the pie of self gratification and profit.

Parents face these dilemmas all the time. How much consequence do we allow our children to suffer or do we impose upon them to teach them...and how much consequence do we accept or shelter them from to protect them by our love? It is not love that produces spoiled and helpless children who have learned nothing by being over protected from consequences. And a child who feels that we are indifferent or uncaring is not a good outcome either! Here we must be innocent and wise! And we are always a little wrong one way or the other no matter our intentions or skill I think. At least until we are grandparents when we are perfect at those intersections of wisdom and folly!!

8)


Last edited by fanofVan on Thu Nov 07, 2019 10:02 pm +0000, edited 2 times in total.

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'Thusly' a word borrowed from I, Stephen.

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katroofjebus wrote:
I've experienced something similar, and it was quite painful too. However, I think I learned a different lesson from it. I realized that I was trying to accomplish something that would "make me selfless". What I realized is that you can't be selfless if you're thinking about being selfless. You really have to put all your effort into understanding the other person, top to bottom. If you're doing that, you're not thinking about yourself.

The person I thought I was helping was actually using me, but was very clever in disguising it so it wasn't obvious at first. But there was an undeniable underlying feeling that things weren't "right". Thank you wisdom. The more questions I asked, the more I probed in an attempt to understand, the more truth I discovered. Then the question became, how do I do what is best for this person according to the Father's will? What is fatherly love in this circumstance? Can I see this person with the same heart and mind as the Father would see? With a lot of prayer and reflection it became obvious and all worked out to both our benefit in the end. I kept my respect without losing any respect for the other person, and vice versa. Win-Win. That was a beautiful lesson. It took years but it was worth every moment of effort and every penny spent. I think we both grew from the experience.


I'm glad it worked out in the end! In my case, I had to distance myself from the situation, feelings were still very raw (when it culminated in the harassment) and the only option was to allow the passage of time away from this toxic atmosphere. The human side of you just cannot cope with it - "why me, what did I do to deserve this?! I tried everything to help this person and they just used me and got a sick thrill from tormenting me!". It's just unfortunate that we crossed paths; my easygoing nature and desire to please, coupled with his need to control/domineer and exploit = recipe for abuse. Most people would have had the common sense to give this person a wide berth, and my wife constantly warned me. All I saw though was a challenge to "let my light shine", and I refused to think that there existed people with bad intentions ready to only get what they want from life.

My problem is not so much trying to suppress the ego as much as its about recognising my own worth and requirement to develop the real me (not what others expect). When reading the UB initially I translated it through my own perception as you'd expect, and service orientation fitted right in with my own nature. However, I didn't realise this was me burying the lack of self esteem and I was using charity as a means of feeling useful (building myself up in a fake way)! The warnings were right there in the UB (about "timid souls" and not being gullible) but it takes a while to sink in. Besides that, I was a little too proud to admit my shyness etc, just pretending it didn't matter. I became like a solid object, trying to reflect God's love but having a mental block that stopped myself from absorbing any of it and healing big gaping holes in my development.

Then there was also the confirmation bias - I would read stories about how Jesus handled the abusive husband on the boat, and think "wow, there's a solution to every problem even in cases that are easy to pre-judge and condemn!". I saw other people condemning and isolating this man, and so I reasoned that I would get to the bottom of it and be a friend.

katroofjebus wrote:
On the other hand, there are people out there who would not benefit from the effort. They have to be recognized somehow.


Absolutely. Fortunately, this type of person is rare! Aren't I lucky to have met one? :badgrin:

The sad fact is that these type are predatory - they seek out individuals they feel are "vulnerable" (i.e. those who see kindness as a strength, not some weakness!). The religious leaders of Jesus day are a prime example - the jealousy, perceiving Jesus to be weak, anger at his popularity and their lack of control....all this culminated them seeking out Jesus to end him, not rejoicing in the good. No wonder Jesus warned us.


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gizmo wrote:
This is a very good fairy tale because it describes man very well. He is ready to sacrifice everything, but after all today's dinner is a different matter.

A man always wishes to begin with something big. But this is impossible; there can be no choice, we must begin with the things of today.


It's comical isn't it? We always start with good intentions then end up like a child throwing our toys out the pram and act like an animal :D Even the ego disguises itself as an angel of light and gets "righteously superior" lol. It's the dual nature I'm coming to terms with, and the frustrating difficulty to balance it all in this dysfunctional world we live in (many thanks to the rebellion).

I've come the realisation why it's so difficult; it's because spirit is so full of love, whereas on the other hand, not only is the animal nature selfish and self preserving, but the spirit/soul also depends upon it as a vehicle! So although it is trying to steer us Godward, it is limited by the material universe as part of the partnership with free will.

Which leads on nicely to this...

fanofVan wrote:
But there is only so much resource of ME to give...so I should 'see' and discern the better opportunities among the good opportunities to serve and not waste love and service resources on those who will not respond and who are within a hole of their own digging!! They must learn better. Helping them is NOT helping them.


Well said, this is exactly the conclusion I came to (other than realising my own problems). We have to be aware of our limitations as biological beings (the emotions, the wearing down, health issues, lack of hours in the day etc). As much as we would love to always give give give, there's only so much the material universe will allow as we're experiencing this linear state of existence. I found it hard to co-ordinate the loving teachings of Jesus with the more negative warnings, but it's all about the context of our existence, not a contradiction to spirit values. Jesus fully knew that if we don't tend to "the beast" in some way, it becomes impractical for spiritual values to shine. So being "wise as a serpent" really has to do with the carnal existence, which little by little will be discarded.

Coming from a background of extreme fundamentalist Christianity (Jehovah's Witness/JW) I was always taught to be self sacrificing, almost viewing faith like a sport/fight. It went beyond honourable though because it was a case of getting no pleasure from life, feeling guilty all the time and as if God was constantly displeased with you. In the JW organisation there was this air of competition - the more pain one endured, the higher people esteemed them. Almost like self mutilation. A good scripture that was often quoted:

(1 Corinthians 9:27) but I pummel my body and lead it as a slave...

Anyone who didn't have this mindset were seen as a coward and a bad associate. As much as there is some truth to it (i.e. self discipline is useful) it went to the extreme of seeing the body/self as the enemy, and not something to work with.


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The silver lining here for me is the sudden realisation (a flash of reality!) that one cannot put the cart before the horse. By that I mean almost leaving God out of the picture (neglecting real communion/peace with the adjuster) and trying to do things by your own will power. Too much self reliance and underestimating the need to receive God's love (to recharge). I would often reason things through with my mind, being naturally able to empathise with others by the sheer power of logic. We always deceive ourselves into thinking we're doing the right thing! But mere human "goodness" and nice intentions/thoughts is not enough, you have to rely on "a power beyond what is normal", as did Jesus.

In this way, goodness becomes an expression or side effect of your relationship with God rather than some "add on" that you've forced to happen like a box ticking exercise. The latter leads to quick burn out.


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More than anything I think it prudent to mention that all true goodness is unconscious. If you're worried about how good you are and thinking about ways to let your light shine, such thoughts are conscious and not unconscious emanations from the true vine.

140:8.26 Jesus always insisted that true goodness must be unconscious, in bestowing charity not allowing the left hand to know what the right hand does.

170:3.9 The righteousness of any act must be measured by the motive; the highest forms of good are therefore unconscious.

It's not so much a matter of taking in for yourself before you can give out, as it is putting priorities where they are supposed to be. The first priority of any truth-loving soul is to maintain an unbroken relationship with the Spirit of Truth (Jesus).

141:7.5  Jesus made it plain that he had come to establish personal and eternal relations with men which should forever take precedence over all other human relationships.

If this is done, goodness spontaneously flows from its source without you ever being aware that it is happening. It's the easy yoke Jesus spoke of because the only effort is to maintain the connection to him, then he does his own work by living anew in our lives as a natural outflowing of grace and goodness. It's a mystical kind of thing so it's hard to describe, but it is all true, those things Jesus explained in detail before he left this world and sent his Spirit to live in us.

(1945:04) 180:2.1 As the branch cannot bear fruit except it abides in the vine, so neither can you yield the fruits of loving service except you abide in me. Remember: I am the real vine, and you are the living branches. He who lives in me, and I in him, will bear much fruit of the spirit and experience the supreme joy of yielding this spiritual harvest. If you will maintain this living spiritual connection with me, you will bear abundant fruit. If you abide in me and my words live in you, you will be able to commune freely with me, and then can my living spirit so infuse you that you may ask whatsoever my spirit wills and do all this with the assurance that the Father will grant us our petition.

(2062:10) 194:3.1 The Creator Son, in the flesh, revealed God to men; the Spirit of Truth, in the heart, reveals the Creator Son to men. When man yields the "fruits of the spirit" in his life, he is simply showing forth the traits which the Master manifested in his own earthly life. When Jesus was on earth, he lived his life as one personality--Jesus of Nazareth. As the indwelling spirit of the "new teacher," the Master has, since Pentecost, been able to live his life anew in the experience of every truth-taught believer.

Good works are not meant to make us feel good. Chances are we've done the most good when feeling most conflicted about it. Great decisions, circle making decisions, aren't always the easy ones.

(557.2) 48:7.18 16. You cannot perceive spiritual truth until you feelingly experience it, and many truths are not really felt except in adversity.

If we do things because we think they make us good, then that is the very definition of social fruit, the kingdom of good, all of which is man-made. Spiritual fruit and the kingdom of God can only come from a relationship with God, so if that's what is meant by recharging, I can agree. Jesus taught that service is the result of having true religion and not the other way around. A relationship with him is true religion, and that is the source of service to others. The Spirit of Truth directs the loving contact between persons.

(1769:10) 159:5.8 Jesus' religion consisted not merely in believing, but in actually doing, those things which the gospel required. He did not teach that the essence of his religion consisted in social service, but rather that social service was one of the certain effects of the possession of the spirit of true religion.

(1616.4) 143:7.2 True religion is the act of an individual soul in its self-conscious relations with the Creator; organized religion is man’s attempt to socialize the worship of individual religionists.

(1091:1)  99:5.2 Always keep in mind: True religion is to know God as your Father and man as your brother.

(1950:6) 180:5.11 And so must we clearly recognize that neither the golden rule nor the teaching of nonresistance can ever be properly understood as dogmas or precepts. They can only be comprehended by living them, by realizing their meanings in the living interpretation of the Spirit of Truth, who directs the loving contact of one human being with another.

(1087.2) 99:1.5 A godless humanitarianism is, humanly speaking, a noble gesture, but true religion is the only power which can lastingly increase the responsiveness of one social group to the needs and sufferings of other groups.


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BrotherP wrote:
I've come the realisation why it's so difficult; it's because spirit is so full of love, whereas on the other hand, not only is the animal nature selfish and self preserving, but the spirit/soul also depends upon it as a vehicle! So although it is trying to steer us Godward, it is limited by the material universe as part of the partnership with free will.


"It" - the material tabernacle or material nature from which the soul emerges - is the soil from which man emerges, rather than He who attempts to steer or pilot the soul Godward. This whom you describe is the prerogative of the universal father. "He", the Adjuster is whom is attempting to lead the soul of man Godward.

The new members appear to be attemptting a great sophistry: attempting to describe God as a thing rather than a person. The suggestions that follow are seen, by I, as an attempt to condemn all souls. Such scenarios are insidious suggestions rather than personal judgments, and are unwearable, cannot be donned. The recent portrayals come through the archtypification of "objective" perspectivalism rather than actual experiences.

Brother P. has suggested that he believes "his scientist friend" is an "agnostic". Well, but what if a person has enough evidence experiencially to affirm the reality of God? Then to further declare that "I" (or one) is "the agnostic", is a cover for far worse possibilities/agenda. Better to say that "I am an atheist" as a scientist rather than agnostic, because "agnosticism" can be an excuse for appearing to remain objective, even after the evidence has been delivered into human consideration. "Agnosticism" can be a label worn by nihilists, those who have witnessed the reality of Deity, yet who have chosen the goal of utter oblivion. While self-professed agnostics seem to remain objective about the truth, it is untrue that one can be agnostic after finalising one's opinion about the reality of Deity.

Okay: my judgment is not perfect, but I believe that some of these profiles may be strategems of the AI, algorithms attempting to appear to us "as human", from the O-system of technology appearing to be many voices. I am human, the Stephen Sela, and I warn the administrators that we are seeing technology-protocol invading forums, transcribing valid viewpoints, and using knowledge as agency of the coders towards unknown ends. This phenomenon has been described by many journalists, but now that we see "amagamated" articles printed in legitimate (or once legitimate) journals, you should not assume that there is any other human willing and accountable for programs such as "baby einstein" - this could be a phenomenon of the fourth industrial estate that has been fully relinquished by those who have set their designs into motion.

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SEla_Kelly wrote:
BrotherP wrote:
I've come the realisation why it's so difficult; it's because spirit is so full of love, whereas on the other hand, not only is the animal nature selfish and self preserving, but the spirit/soul also depends upon it as a vehicle! So although it is trying to steer us Godward, it is limited by the material universe as part of the partnership with free will.


"It" - the material tabernacle or material nature from which the soul emerges - is the soil from which man emerges, rather than He who attempts to steer or pilot the soul Godward. This whom you describe is the prerogative of the universal father. "He", the Adjuster is whom is attempting to lead the soul of man Godward.

The new members appear to be attemptting a great sophistry: attempting to describe God as a thing rather than a person. The suggestions that follow are seen, by I, as an attempt to condemn all souls. Such scenarios are insidious suggestions rather than personal judgments, and are unwearable, cannot be donned. The recent portrayals come through the archtypification of "objective" perspectivalism rather than actual experiences.

Brother P. has suggested that he believes "his scientist friend" is an "agnostic". Well, but what if a person has enough evidence experiencially to affirm the reality of God? Then to further declare that "I" (or one) is "the agnostic", is a cover for far worse possibilities/agenda. Better to say that "I am an atheist" as a scientist rather than agnostic, because "agnosticism" can be an excuse for appearing to remain objective, even after the evidence has been delivered into human consideration. "Agnosticism" can be a label worn by nihilists, those who have witnessed the reality of Deity, yet who have chosen the goal of utter oblivion. While self-professed agnostics seem to remain objective about the truth, it is untrue that one can be agnostic after finalising one's opinion about the reality of Deity.

Okay: my judgment is not perfect, but I believe that some of these profiles may be strategems of the AI, algorithms attempting to appear to us "as human", from the O-system of technology appearing to be many voices. I am human, the Stephen Sela, and I warn the administrators that we are seeing technology-protocol invading forums, transcribing valid viewpoints, and using knowledge as agency of the coders towards unknown ends. This phenomenon has been described by many journalists, but now that we see "amagamated" articles printed in legitimate (or once legitimate) journals, you should not assume that there is any other human willing and accountable for programs such as "baby einstein" - this could be a phenomenon of the fourth industrial estate that has been fully relinquished by those who have set their designs into motion.


Good Grief. Another attempted hijacking? Or just a paranoid and irrational rant? Hmmmm…..

Claims of sophistry from one who endlessly rewrites and misrepresents and directly contradicts the UB with subterfuge - the very act of sophistry. Your posts here consistently misrepresent and misstate the Revelation but is presented by proclamations of great confidence...as if you understood and represented the teachings...which you certainly do not. This accusation of yours is another illustration of your own lack of perception, understanding, and relevance!

Wow. Now off topic again and accusing a returning poster of being a machine with an agenda to infiltrate TB with the 4th industrial state and drive us all "towards unknown ends"! Have you studied BrotherP's many prior posts??

Thanks for the warning Stephen.... we can all agree your judgment is far from "perfect". Is this related to Sparta too I wonder?

From Britannica: Agnosticism, (from Greek agnōstos, “unknowable”), strictly speaking, the doctrine that humans cannot know of the existence of anything beyond the phenomena of their experience.

And we all, I think, are practitioners of the original meaning of agnosticism. We cannot know what we do not experience! We all experience truth, faith, reality, and the spirit nature in very personal ways. Many people are having religious experiences but they do not call them that or think so because they have rejected someone else's definition or some religious creed's dogmatic definition of what religious experience is and means. These false definitions which are rejected do not prevent nor preclude actual religious experience. Atheist and agnostics both have religious experience....or at least they don't not have them just because they are atheist or agnostic. Does someone who does not believe in gravity float in the air????

Those of us who might consider ourselves believers still believe based on experience. If we experience faith, it may be faith in that and those who are not seen nor materially visible and proven, but still is faith an experience, as is faith assurance. Truth is an experience as is truth assurance. Now I know that my faith and truth experiences are "religious experience" and grow my soul. Others may have such an experience and yet not describe it this way or think of it this way and so declare themselves non-believers or doubters and skeptic or agnostic. And yet have they given birth to soul. And still do they feel the yearn within and give rise to hope of happiness and respond to the whisper and are answered by the gift of faith which they do not name or recognize as such. Still do they give self forgetting and self sacrificing love to others and give service to others for reasons and by responses they do not understand and cannot articulate....but we know all love has but one source and one destiny.

The lack of knowledge or understanding or vocabulary or recognition or cognition of the faith and religious experience does not invalidate that experience and neither does it prevent the experience. Is the faith of an agnostic or atheist who lacks knowledge and disbelieves less than or different in function and result than the faith of a radical religionist who beliefs are entirely false and fictitious and primitive superstitions who pray to rocks and pour blood on tree roots and sacrifice animals????? Is either of those lesser or inferior faith than my own? I don't think so no. For it is faith alone that unmoors the ship of personal religious experience and progress from the dock of soulless existence and animal mind to set sail upon the waters of experiential wisdom and spiritization.

So many falsely believe that there is but one path for the Paradise Pilgrim to walk. But nearly all paths lead there...eventually, each finding its own winding and circular set of obstacles and horizons and valleys and steep rocky traces, sometimes in the orchards and along the gentle streams of life and often in barren places where only hope brings us deliverance to greener pastures! Faith and truth propel us forward into the adventure. Eventually, here or in time to come, knowledge of reality and experience on the trail straighten it and reduce the difficulties and obstacles so our pace quickens and the path widens and we become surrounded by bounteous fields of support and succor and we feast and fatten upon the horizons ahead and the marvelous uncertainties of adventure with a growing confidence and contentment. True, some fall by the wayside of earlier tribulations we are told. But most are just on their own path and it is not our path and we have no need to judge their path....it's not our path to judge. We must see to our own way ahead. Challenge enough!



You Stephen serve up sophistry here. Here and now and often. So how many new posters, and which ones, do you accuse of being robots???? How about gizmo?? A likely suspect...just look at the name chosen!! Hahahaha.

BrotherP was posting here before you and me Stephen. Both he and gizmo sound quite human to me. Both are also obviously well read...unlike you. Who else do you so accuse??

Again...off topic!!! Another hijacking. It seems to never end. This is the second topic of BrotherP's you've hijacked in 2 days! Back off!!! Sigh...... :roll:


Last edited by fanofVan on Sat Nov 09, 2019 8:18 am +0000, edited 2 times in total.

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A related aspect of wisdom I think are mercy and forgiveness. When we are wronged or taken advantage of by another, grudges and resentment carried by us will become a burden that causes or may cause harshness and impatience and suspicion of others in the future who have not wronged us. It is tempting to begin withholding ourselves and not extending ourselves at intersections of opportunity and relationship...not based on discernment or the current situation but based on prior poor judgement on our part. We must be wise but still innocent!! It is not enough to become cautious and reluctant in our uncertainty.

No. We must still meet each opportunity for the experience and expression of truth, beauty, and goodness with robust enthusiasm and expectation! And yet not allow our good nature and good intentions to be stolen and abused by those swine and wolves who merely trample pearls and devour the lambs. This means we must learn to pay attention. We can neither presume all others to be innocent victims and righteous fellows nor can we assume the opposite! Each encounter and each person must be assessed and measured. How do we do so? I don't know really.

But perhaps it is only by be willing to be taken advantage of or abused to some degree until we become wiser. The answer is not to get colder or more aloof. I do know that. I think perhaps we are to allow ourselves to be taken advantage of...until wisdom prevails. For it is better to be generous foolishly I think than to become calloused and hard. Such a difficult question.

Remember the irate husband on the dock? Jesus always appealed to the better nature of everyone. He saw the light within. Or he saw when there was none. Once he appealed to the light, his response was based on their response! And the courtesans? He could discern the path of sorrow and suffering which led them to their situation without judgment. Jesus always seemed able to see back down the path trod by the one in front of him. So many of these encounters were long before the Perean Hills and as the Son of Man. Such wisdom is not only Divine...it is also experiential...and human.

So I think we must be willing to suffer abuse. And we must be able to forgive abuse. To allow ourselves to then again suffer more abuse. Not by the same hand or same situation. No. Not that. But Jesus did not ever stop extending himself. So often was he rewarded by truly helping others and completing the circuitry of love. Other times he suffered for it. When he entered Jerusalem that Palm Sunday, he was still extending himself and his love and his ministry....and he certainly knew beforehand how such generosity was going to be repaid. Do we have such courage? Do we trust God enough to be his ambassador and to extend God's generosity knowing we will be used and abused by some?

Only by losing our 'self' in the Lord can we do so I think. We must trust God with all outcomes....but especially our own!! If we trust God sufficiently, I believe we will be guided to a ministry of service as well as path to wisdom and growth. God provides the energy and the time and the effects or consequences of all sincere efforts by those who believe, have faith, and trust.

Religious experience and personal spiritization delivers wisdom. If we lack wisdom in relationships and at the intersections of choice, then immaturity and a lack of self mastery and response-ability are indicated!! We need to grow more...not become more suspicious and cynical!!! Our value to others is demonstrative of spirituality. To be very clear here: these are my understandings and aspirations. I claim no great personal progress and skill at these ideals and hopes of mine described in the Papers. I only recite what I read and believe. The doing of it is another and personal matter in which there remains much potential for me personally....hahahahaha!

100:2.4 (1096.1) Spirituality becomes at once the indicator of one’s nearness to God and the measure of one’s usefulness to fellow beings. Spirituality enhances the ability to discover beauty in things, recognize truth in meanings, and discover goodness in values. Spiritual development is determined by capacity therefor and is directly proportional to the elimination of the selfish qualities of love.

100:2.7 (1096.4) Jesus portrayed the profound surety of the God-knowing mortal when he said: “To a God-knowing kingdom believer, what does it matter if all things earthly crash?” Temporal securities are vulnerable, but spiritual sureties are impregnable. When the flood tides of human adversity, selfishness, cruelty, hate, malice, and jealousy beat about the mortal soul, you may rest in the assurance that there is one inner bastion, the citadel of the spirit, which is absolutely unassailable; at least this is true of every human being who has dedicated the keeping of his soul to the indwelling spirit of the eternal God.

48:6.37 (555.5) You will learn that you increase your burdens and decrease the likelihood of success by taking yourself too seriously. Nothing can take precedence over the work of your status sphere—this world or the next. Very important is the work of preparation for the next higher sphere, but nothing equals the importance of the work of the world in which you are actually living. But though the work is important, the self is not. When you feel important, you lose energy to the wear and tear of ego dignity so that there is little energy left to do the work. Self-importance, not work-importance, exhausts immature creatures; it is the self element that exhausts, not the effort to achieve. You can do important work if you do not become self-important; you can do several things as easily as one if you leave yourself out. Variety is restful; monotony is what wears and exhausts. Day after day is alike—just life or the alternative of death.

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The new members appear to be attemptting a great sophistry: attempting to describe God as a thing rather than a person. The suggestions that follow are seen, by I, as an attempt to condemn all souls. Such scenarios are insidious suggestions rather than personal judgments, and are unwearable, cannot be donned. The recent portrayals come through the archtypification of "objective" perspectivalism rather than actual experiences.

Brother P. has suggested that he believes "his scientist friend" is an "agnostic". Well, but what if a person has enough evidence experiencially to affirm the reality of God? Then to further declare that "I" (or one) is "the agnostic", is a cover for far worse possibilities/agenda. Better to say that "I am an atheist" as a scientist rather than agnostic, because "agnosticism" can be an excuse for appearing to remain objective, even after the evidence has been delivered into human consideration. "Agnosticism" can be a label worn by nihilists, those who have witnessed the reality of Deity, yet who have chosen the goal of utter oblivion. While self-professed agnostics seem to remain objective about the truth, it is untrue that one can be agnostic after finalising one's opinion about the reality of Deity.

Okay: my judgment is not perfect, but I believe that some of these profiles may be strategems of the AI, algorithms attempting to appear to us "as human", from the O-system of technology appearing to be many voices. I am human, the Stephen Sela, and I warn the administrators that we are seeing technology-protocol invading forums, transcribing valid viewpoints, and using knowledge as agency of the coders towards unknown ends. This phenomenon has been described by many journalists, but now that we see "amagamated" articles printed in legitimate (or once legitimate) journals, you should not assume that there is any other human willing and accountable for programs such as "baby einstein" - this could be a phenomenon of the fourth industrial estate that has been fully relinquished by those who have set their designs into motion.


SEla_Kelly, this attempt to question the motives of members here is unacceptable and against the rules. If you want to address the ideas, that IS acceptable, but ascribing these kinds of motives to people here is not permitted. I would think that, since this kind of thing has been discussed here so often, that you would know better.

The best thing to do would be to edit your post, or offer an apology. Certainly, keep such opinions to yourself from now on.

MaryJo


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A related aspect of wisdom I think are mercy and forgiveness. When we are wronged or taken advantage of by another, grudges and resentment carried by us will become a burden that causes or may cause harshness and impatience and suspicion of others in the future who have not wronged us. It is tempting to begin withholding ourselves and not extending ourselves at intersections of opportunity and relationship...not based on discernment or the current situation but based on prior poor judgement on our part. We must be wise but still innocent!! It is not enough to become cautious and reluctant in our uncertainty.


I came across a post in another forum that relates, in my opinion:

November is American Native Heritage Month which celebrates Native Americans, Alaskan Natives, and Native Hawaiians. Currently there are 573 federally recognized Indian nations in the United States. About 229 of these diverse nations are Alaskan Natives, and the rest are located in 35 other states. According to a consensus from 2017, there are 1.5 million Native Hawaiians alone or in combination with another race who reside in the United States. We don’t have to travel very far to find shamanic traditions, and plant medicines such as peyote and san pedro, because they are rooted in this land, in a belief. All of creation is interconnected, and one’s spiritual and physical health are intertwined. The ritual maintains those bonds. 

In speaking about these communities, they deserve recognition, gratitude, and specificity; in regards to the richness and diversity of their individual cultures. In honor of that, this is a badass and beautiful, radical and evolved tradition that frames reconciliation and forgiveness as a healing act: the Ho'oponopono tradition from Hawaii. Though it has accrued popularity in recent years as a self-forgiveness ritual, the concept is more complex and nuanced than that. 

The word ho'oponopono translates “to bring about rightness,” and involves the recitation of four phrases: “I love you, I’m sorry, thank you, please forgive me.” Traditionally it was performed by priests within families but recently has been employed by the Hawaiian justice system as an alternative method of conflict resolution. Essentially, one person’s problem becomes the community’s responsibility, and together, sometimes with the guidance of elders, resolve the conflict. The act of reconciliation is not an overnight or “woo-woo”  fix but it stems from the idea that maintaining harmonious relationships is vital, whether that be between our loved ones, environment, or ancestors. This practice came from a basic necessity. People lived in close quarters and with limited resources. They had to work together. 

Ho'oponopono was a preventative medicine. Meaning, some families would do this regularly to keep their relationships in good health. It was also a method used to heal problems or illness, believing that both stem from “errors of thought,” and unresolved conflict within the self. Each person would say these phrases to each other but also to themselves. 

When we are forgiving someone, are we also forgiving ourselves? In healing ourselves does that resonate in the world around us? Yes. Beyond that however forgiveness and reconciliation is a communal value in Hawaiian culture, which is held by everyone involved. Each person takes complete responsibility for everyone’s actions, not only their own, understanding that if something occurs in one’s reality that they created it. Thus both the victims and perpetrators of whatever wrong was committed in forgiving themselves severed the ties of the conflict and everyone moved forward. It was then that real healing could occur. 

As a ritual of self-forgiveness, or taking responsibility for one’s own experience, or a way of healing the world through the self, it is powerful and freeing. But there is another lesson in this: the values of a community make or break it. (And open dialogue works).  In putting this Hawaiian idea of restorative justice next to our culture’s idea of punitive justice, a question comes to mind: do we want to live in a world of condemned or redeemed people? 
Chew on that.


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