"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.

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

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

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.

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