A Stream in the Desert:

"May Adonai bless you and protect you! May Adonai deal kindly and graciously with you! May Adonai lift up his countenance upon you and grant you peace!" (Torah, Numbers 6:24-26) And Jesus said, "Allow the little children to come unto me. Forbid them not, for of such is the Kingdom of God. Truly, I say unto you, unless you receive the Kingdom of God as a little child does, you shall not enter therein." (New Testament, Mark 10:14-16)

Sojourning at an Oasis Paradise

My purpose for living this life, and for writing this blog, is to understand the faith that links us to God. I wish to explore and discuss the reality at the heart of all of the world's religions. This is an immense task, but I know that God also has faith in us, trusting that we do desire the truth, as well as freedom, love and wisdom. Thus, as always, He meets us halfway. Even as God has given us individual souls, so we must each of us trace out an individual pathway to God. Whether we reside in the cities of orthodox religion, or wend our solitary ways through the barren wastelands, God watches over us and offers us guidance and sustenance for the journey.

Most of what you will see here is the result of extensive personal study, combined with some careful speculation. Occasionally, I may simply offer some Scripture or an inspirational text. I am a wide reader, and the connection of some topics and ideas to matters of faith and religion may not seem immediately obvious, but perhaps I may spell it out in the end... or maybe, you will decide that it was just a tangent. Anyway, I hope that you will find my meanderings to be spiritually enlightening, intellectually stimulating, or at least somewhat entertaining.

In the coming weeks and months, I intend to transcribe a series of essays that I wrote about 20 years ago in the hope that I might get them published. They represent the nucleus of my spiritual life and the focal point around which my wanderings revolve like an electron in an atom. I hope that they might eventually serve as a springboard for discussions about the common spiritual heritage of humanity. May we come together and embrace each other in peace.


Saturday, April 2, 2016

We were made for Eden.

We were made for paradise, like deer in the forest ...

Perhaps now we are left the task to heal the planet,
since we were originally given the job to be stewards.
It seems likely that we were "cast out" of Eden because
we were failing that. Now, perhaps, we may try to
rebuild Eden according to our own best ecological
designs.

1. Heal the planet. We need to stop and repair the
damage we are doing now, and reverse the process
to find a more natural balance similar to the way
the world worked before our civilization began
fouling it.

2. Rebuild ecological Eden.
We will need to use the all-encompassing ideas
that guide the philosophy of "deep ecology,"
including as many species in our calculations as
we can, and observing their interactions. Every
species has its place, even some that we might
find inconvenient or undesirable, but another more
important one may be dependent on them. They
survived and evolved, so they have an inherent
right to be here. Only those that are primarily
parasitic or disease vectors, and don't irreplace-
ably support another species may be considered
for elimination.

Our intent is to create the best world possible.
One with the greatest variety and number of
species that we can preserve, from the level of
the bacteria to that of the whales, and everything
in between. Once we have done this, we are fit to
ascend the heavens and design the paradise we
truly desire.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Truth in Religion.

How can you tell a "true" religion
from spurious ones?

1. A true religion must bring out the
best in people, in both personal virtue
and social cohesion, and respect for
individuality.

2. It must offer the highest imaginable
 ideals and morality, preventing the
abuse of the weak, without prescribing
 onerous detail.

3. It must value all people, for their
spiritual potential, and offer opportun-
ities for reformation of character and
growth in virtue.

4. It must not be amenable to manipu-
lation for personal favor, material gain
or exceptional permission.

5. It must allow, without contradiction,
for scientific theory, investigation and
discovery.

6. It must offer a satisfying meaning
for existence and an adaptable way
of life.

7. It must respect the natural balance
and ecology of habitats and home
planets and act with stewardship
and reverence for life.

8. It must not use coercion or oppres-
sion to dominate others, nor allow
violence or captivity as punishment.

In short, a true religion will hold up the
four ideals: truth, freedom, love and
wisdom, as sacred values to be pursued
and expanded to their fullest practical
extent, and seek to eliminate all uses of
threats, lies, slavery and oppression.

God will understand, and if He does not
understand then He is not God.