June 29, 2007
July 2, 2007

June 30-July 1, 2007, weekend

AN OLIVE BRANCH FOR THE CHINESE

The pope, trying to mend the relationship between the Vatican and Chinese Catholics, released a letter Saturday that calls for reconciliation. I suspect this one will take plenty of time to heal.

* * *

A ONE-ARMED DIVINE PAPER HANGER WITH HIVES?

God certainly is busy intervening in the affairs of humanity, if various testimonies are to be believed. The latest is from Fidel Castro, who says God has protected him from assassination attempts ordered by U.S. authorities. With so much to do on the political front, I wonder how God has time to damn everything people routinely request. What a job. God can keep it.

* * *

DEBATING THE TRINITY, PART II

A couple of weeks ago, I posted an entry in which I talked about aspects of the Christian doctrine of the Trinity.

Trinity5As I at least hinted at the time, trinitarian theology can take a lifetime to unpack, though I contend that it's not as mysterious and confusing as a lot of people make it out to be. Still, if the General Semanticists are right that one can never say all about anything (and they arae), the Trinity is a subject about which that is true in spades.

So today I briefly want to return to the Trinity to pass along a few thoughts from participants in the current debate on the subject going on in my own denomination, the Presbyterian Church (USA). Last year our church's highest national governing body, the General Assembly, received (without approving it) a report on a lengthy study of trinitarian doctrine.

It was called "The Trinity: God's Love Overflowing," and it received some pointed criticism for suggesting it would be useful to find new language to speak about the Trinity beyond the traditional formulation of Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The report said that traditional language should have priority but it also said it wouldn't hurt, on occasion, to use such other wording. The one that evoked the most protest was "compassionate mother, beloved child, life-giving womb."

In a recent issue of Presbyterian Outlook, an independent publication that covers the PCUSA, one of my favorite contemporary theologians, Daniel Migliore, who teaches at Princeton Theological Seminary, defended the report on the Trinity, suggesting that it properly focuses "on the good news that this doctrine enshrines. . ." (You have to be a subscriber to read the whole piece. The link will give you just a few sentences of Migliore's piece.)

Migliore called the report a reminder "that we are not to think that God can be brought under our control or captured once for all by any of our words and concepts."

An opposing view came from Inkyu Park, pastor of the University Presbyterian Church in Akron, Ohio, who suggested the report "is too fatally flawed to serve as a base for study and worship materials for the church to use in the interest of church growth and world evangelization." (Same note about this link not giving you the whole piece.)

Well, whatever you think of the PCUSA report on the Trinity, I think it's a sign of health and vigor when a church can debate aspects of its doctrine -- as long as the debate does not keep members of the church from doing the ministry they're called on to do, such as comforting the bereaved, sheltering the homeless and caring for souls.

What is your own faith community debating? And is it a healthy discussion or simply more divisiveness?

To read my latest Kansas City Star work, click here.

P.S.: Rabbi Jacques Cukierkorn and I will speak at 9 a.m. Sunday at my church, Second Presbyterian, and talk about our Holocaust book project. Come on by. It's at 55th and Oak in Kansas City, Mo. Ask for the Witherspoon class. For more information on our book, click the "Check this out" item on the right of this page. UPDATE: We spoke to a full house and had fun doing it.

Today's religious holidays: Guru Purnima (Hinduism, 30th); Asala Puja Day (Buddhism).

Comments

Dolores Lear

As you all know, I accept a High Tech translation of the Christian Bible, and Myth.
Since the Noah/Atlantis Flood, Scripture and Myth Humans could not translate the supernatural happenings, in all Scripture and Myth.
The Trinity revealed for me, is: the Source Of Life of the Universes is the One GOD, along with the Atom/Matter the Son, and the Electro-magnetic Force the Holy Spirit. This is the Trinity that makes 'Life' as we know it, seen and unseen.
All Trinity religions before Christianity, had a Father, Mother and Son as the Godhead. The Early Christians who had contact with Jesus were exposed to the fact that the Trinity was a Father, Son and Holy Spirit, none of them with physical bodies. This was translated in time as a real Father, Son, but not a real Holy Spirit body, which used to be the Mother.

"Jeus of Nazareth" by Pope Benedict XVI.
"Our Father Who art In Heaven", pg. 139, 140.
"Although this use of lanaguage derived from man's bodiliness inscribes motherly love into the image of God, it is nonetheless also true that God is never named or addressed as mother, either in the Old or in the New Testament. "Mother" in the Bible is an image but not a title for God. Why Not? We can only tentatively seek to understand. Of course, God is neither a man nor a woman, but simply God, the Creator of man and woman. The mother-deities that completely surrounded the people of Israel and the New Testament Church create a picture of the relation between God and the world that is completelly opposed to the biblical image of God. These deities always, and probably inevitably, imply some form of pantheism in which the difference between Creator and creature disappears. Looked at in these terms, the being of things and of people cannot help looking like an emanation from the maternal womb of being, which, in entering time, takes shape in the multiplicity of existing things. By contrast, the image of the Father was and is apt and for expressing the otherness of Creator and creature and the sovereignty of his creative act. Only by exclluding the mother-deities could the Old Testament bring its image of God, the pure transcendence of God, to maturity.

"But even if we cannot provide any absolutely compelling arguments, the prayer language of the entire Bible remains normative for us, in which, as we have seen, while there are some fine images of maternal love, "mother" is not used as a title or a form of address for God. We make our petitions in the way that Jesus, with Holy Scripture in the background, taught us to pray, and not as we happen to think or want. Only thus do we pray properly."


Pope: "Of course, God is neither a man nor a woman, but simply God, the Creator of man and woman."

The Pope helped me to explain the Trinity and I also say this: the God in Genesis, that walked and talked with Humans, and made Adam and then Eve from Adam's rib was our High Tech Ancestors that Created/Colonized Life on Earth as we know it, made of Atoms and the Electro-Magnetic Force, with the Source of Life/Father, made Christan Trinity of LIFE.

When the High Tech Humans, the Original Colony on Earth, Sinned they lost their High Tech Knowledge and recorded all this information, translated as supernatural. High Tech is 'super'natural. At Jesus' time the Original Trinity of the Universes was again understood, but again without the High Tech, was mistranslated Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

The High Tech Trinity of all physical Life as we know it is the Source of Life/Father, the Atom/Son and the Holy Spirit/Electro-Magenetic Force of High Tech Physcial Humans made of these elements. Where Humans 'evolved' to High Tech, I do not know, but they did and Colonized Earth 'in the beginning'.
What type of Life After Death there is, I do not know. It is not the Physical realm that Humans can stay in Forever.
With Balanced Elements, and Equal Sharing, in all things necessary for Eternal High Tech Physical Life After Birth, it is possible for the Crew on Spaceship Earth, and in spaceships. The Same Equal Sharing Lifestyle as the Human Crew has in spaeships, should also be Lived on Space Earth.
What would happen to the Crew, in a spaceship with the Sexual activity and Mis-bred Birth and killing, that is on our Home Planet? Would this Crew survive?

It is time before we blow up our Home Planet with nuclear bombs, to understand the new Trinity, given at Jesus' time. He is up in Space, in a Pure-bred Physical body, with our Pur-bred High Tech Ancestors, and will return at the Judgement Day with them, to Save them as Scripture promises.

What is ahead of Physical Life on Earth, Eternal Physical Life on a new Planet, or Complete Death of our Polluted Home Planet?

Patricia

"Looked at in these terms, the being of things and of people cannot help looking like an emanation from the maternal womb of being, which, in entering time, takes shape in the multiplicity of existing things. By contrast, the image of the Father was and is apt and for expressing the otherness of Creator and creature and the sovereignty of his creative act."

So. The flip of the world being seen in the inferior, pantheistic, terms of emanating from a womb, would be the world seen as emanating from........a penis. Funny, but the traditional association for creation and creativity is a womb. Or phallic combined with womb creating child.

The Pope seems to be positing a new and "creative" kind of phallus-centric theory. The world as "sovereign" masturbation.

Just Thinking

The Presbyterian can put anything out there to consider. They can always take it back later. At least they don't have a delusional leader who believes that they are infalliable in doctrinal issues and, so, they can dare to be human. If they're wrong, then they can admit that they made an error and back down.

Not admitting fallibility has lead to situations where people believe that babies are created guilty of sin! As though God turns his head away from the lump of clay as He squishes it to purposefully make filthy little babies. He squints His eyes really hard, and creates filth. Hahahaha!

Unfortunately that kind of sickness cannot be corrected when you cannot admit doctrinal fallibility, and it's still playing out with long strings of fairy tales to fix the error, resulting in the latest one that some belief God sometimes does water Baptisms after people die to clean them! I wonder if God does windows, too.

Patricia

I want to know that it is only George Bush's God that protects him from assassination. Bush's God happens to be something of a major screw-up. He also really blew it in Iraq.

Patricia

Should read: I want Fidel to know that it is only George Bush's God that protects him from assassination. Bush's God happens to be something of a major screw-up. He also really blew it in Iraq.

Jeff

Well, this is a really constructive conversation... NOT.

Dolores Lear

Patricia and All.

The male penis 'was' the Original Sin of the Pure-bred Adam and Eve, male and female Equal Genetic Clone Helpmeets, as described in Genesis of the Christian Bible. They were not mates, in the beginning of Physical Life on Earth.
When Adam's penis' seed combined with the Eve's overy seed in her female womb; they created Inbred Cain and Abel and many more Inbred children, from whom we are descended, which gave us our Inherited Genetic Mis-bred Bodies.
The Adam and Eve Colony were not created in the female womb, but the High Tech Womb as we are trying to make with our High Tech today. The egg and sperm seeds were cleaned of impurities before they were made in Human form. The only Way for Humans to be Pure is through High Tech Reproduction. There is alot of keeping Pure, but it is impossible with Body reproduction.

We do join the egg and sperm in a dish, and correct some Genetic diseases, before the fetus is put into the female womb. So the sex act is not needed for reproduction on Earth any more, that gives all the Lusts of the Flesh we have in our genetic makeup today.
No one made by Body Birth is guilty of the Original Sin, except to keep on reproducing Mis-bred Bodies that Kill our Brothes/Sisters of Life, and make Nuclear bombs, and weapons of massive destruction, to our Eco System and All Life on Earth. When we understand what started Mis-breeding and that the Killing of the All Life put on Earth, was what the Original Sin was 'in the beginning', we will understand the past supernatural writings on religion and myth on our Home plant.

Are we ready to accept that Humans are responsible for All the Killing of Life on Earth, not the Peace God that Colonized Earth? Thou shalt not Kill. What does that mean? That God should not destroy the Life on Earth, or that Humans should not?
The next step with our High Tech is the High Tech Womb, and then Birth damage and Misbred Genetic flaws and diseases, will be abolished. We can 'regenerate' all Mis-bred Humans to Pure-bred Physical Bodies that do not die, but Live Forever as long as they do not reproduce by Body Birth.
The Humans that made Adam and Eve are in their 'image', are our High Tech Ancestors from Space that do Colonize other Planets, in the Universes. Our scientists also know how to start colonizing a planet.
So the two mysteries of how we were made, and how we got here, can be explained by High Tech.
High Tech can also explain the Noah/Atlantis Planetary Flood, a combination of writings in religion and myth, in Genesis also.

It is Time to accept High Tech Life may have evolved somewhere in Space, but Life on Earth was colonized by Perfect Pure-bred High Tech Humans, it did not 'evolve' up to our High Tech today. Our High Tech Ancestors with Jesus, will return to Earth, before we blow up our Home Planet.

The Pope's book is a very good read, especially for me. He has a lot of good information about Jesus, and more to come.

corbin

Patricia,
I think the reason BXVI is using such imagery is to explain the identification with the Creator as an 'other' and for individuals to understand themselves as distinct beings which somewhat opposes the area panthesitic pagan goddess-worship of the ancient world. God as purely transcendent relates to Fatherhood more than Motherhood despite the fact that God is neither male nor female. So, the flip side is not creation as emanation at all but rather is understood as a purely transcendant act where God, by speaking, creates. "In the beginning was the Word." This seems to be a mere point on human psychology, as I am sure one could make concerning your posts and your obsession with genitals. I reserve my judgment. You can call your god 'Mother' if you want, but such imagery relates poorly both to judeo-Christian tradition and the human institutions such as family, Church, and state that formulate for us our understanding of the meaning of those terms. It isn't sexual Ms. Freud, it is familial.

Joe Barone

All faith is an opinion. I used to teach students that any prediction of the future (even the local weather person's) is an opinion. It doesn't become a fact until it happens.

The same is true with God, the Trinity, and all the rest. We'll only know about all that farther along. Meanwhile, we're entitled to our opinions.

corbin

JT,
You never did your homework on papal infallability did you. Tsk tsk young man. Shots in the dark don't work in grown-up world and you might not get to go to college if you don't shape up. I am going to send weekly reports to your mom so she can know that you aren't doing anything but causing trouble for other students who want a good future.

Joe Barone

God as a one-armed paperhanger? Bill, I agree with you, but I struggle desperately with the other side of that coin--my desire to have a God I can influence with my prayers. Sometimes I think our prayer is God's attempt to influence us.

Dolores Lear

When did Physical Life become Spiritual Life? Is there Eternal Spiritual Life, except for High Tech Pure-bred Physical Life made from Atoms and the Spirit/Electro-magnetic Force, that can Live Forever after High Tech Birth? Is Spiritual Life for Eternal Life After Death? Or, is Spiritual Life really the lost knowledge of Pure-bred Eternal Physical Life After Birth?

"God's Daily Promise" 6/30/07.
"Why is obediance important to my spiritual life?"
"Today I am giving you the choice between a blessing and a curse. You will be blessed if you obey the commands of the Lord your God that I am giving you today. You will receive a curse if you reject the commands of the Lord your God and turn away from his way by worshipping foreign gods!" Deuteronomy 11:26-28. NLT.
"If you will obey me and keep my covenant, you will be my own special treasure from among all nations of the earth; for all the earth belongs to me. Exodus 19:5. NLT.

These two verses, and more, were said by Moses to the Children of Israel in the Wilderness. Who was this Lord God?
What were the spiritual commands given by the Lord your God, up on the mountain? Rules for physical Life?
Was this Lord God the Peace God that Colonized Earth, that flew up in the air, and out into space?
Or the High Tech Noah/Atlantis Society that also flew up in the air like we do, and landed on the mountain, with smoke, fire, and thunder? As we fly up in the air today, with our High Tech shuttles with smoke, fire, and thunder also. Is the light brighter than the Sun, that we see when the shuttle launches, the glory light of the Noah/Atlantis Lord?
Our High Tech Ancestors use the Electro-Magnetic Force for space travel, and do not need the smoke, fire and thunder to land on mountains.
I do not think the Lord that Jesus was with, had a spaceship with smoke, fire, and thunder.

Is God, the Lord of our planet today, the USA president that is trying to lead the people in Iraq, to a better Life if they obey his commands?

This is an informational idea, not intended to put down our president or offend the Lord God in the Wilderness.
I accept that the Christian Bible needs a new High Tech translation today to help us understand and accept that there is Eternal Human Life After Birth on Planets, and in spaceships.

Patricia

Just as the Pope must appropriate the Creation function of a womb and make it male, in order to justify paternalism through a Father-God, so follows the appropriation of the "word".

In fact, what we now know about biology and have always observed in children, is that the "word" is a female area of superiority and domination. Mother God, here we come.

It makes no logical sense to argue that God has no sex BUT that HE exhibits the attributes of Father. Unless you can say that (S)He has the attributes of Mother and Father or that there are simply Other attributes(which makes no sense), then you are choosing to assign male status.

As for the argument that this is in some way familial......what kind of family can possibly be defined by the absence of Mother? And what Benedict is arguing is very much the absence of Mother.

Dolores, the churches don't have those spires on them as homage to rocket ships. According to Benedict's philosophy, they would clearly be homage to sovereign masturbation. No women allowed in the philosophy or the hierarchy.

Dolores Lear

Patrica.

Thanks for the information on phallus. I still think our spires resemble space rockets taking off. The bombs we make look more like a Phallic symbol, and are just as deadly, since they reproduce a Killer Human instead of a Caretaker Human, made by High Tech reproduction.

corbin

Patricia,

Sorry about the pronoun, "God exhibits attributes of Fatherhood."

I don't get your "word" discussion with motherhood really nor did I ascribe a male status to "word." (Though all guys basically do is make stuff and name it.) My point was about creation not being an emanation of self but rather a creative act.

The Mother is Mary, Queen of Angels, Queen of Heaven. Meditate on the person of Mary and Benedict's position makes more sense, and so would the meaning of womanhood.

Dolores Lear

Corbin.
Many Christians think the Word is Jesus a male.

The Creation of Life on Earth 'was'
a Creative/Colonization act of our High Tech Human Ancestors.

corbin

The Word is God. Jesus is the incarnate Word. Jesus was male, but the Word has no gender, as God has no gender.

Dolores Lear

Corbin.

Why the usage of He Him and His then, when talking about God, that has no 'Being'. GOD is not a supernatural Higher 'Being'. GOD is not a Spirit 'Being', a Supreme 'Being or any of the other 'Be'ing attributes given to the He God. This 'He' God was our Human High Tech Ancestors.

The GOD of the Universes is not a Human, but did make all the Universes and Life as we know it. How? I do not know, but the Bible does inform us of 'Higher' Beings that did Create Life on Earth in the same Human form that we have. We are in the likeness of God, but are Lower 'Beings' because of Body Birth.
And today we know how to Colonize planets and reproduce Humans by High Tech, like the God/Lord in the Bible, but I do not think Humans will ever know the GOD of the Universes.

To 'Be' or not to 'Be' is the question facing Fallen Humans today with the pollution on land and sea and enough nuclear bombs to blow up our Home Planet.

Just Thinking

Yep, right, Corbin. Jesus is the Son of God. No gender there. Where do you get this crap? From your newadvent wiki? Or is that how the priests try to make their sexual sins against children sound okay: everybody is one sex, man, woman, boy, girl, male infants, female infants? Do the teach that to them the 'hard way' in semen-ary?

Dolores Lear

No gender means Asexual or Pure-bred for Humans. We have not had Asexual Humans since the Colonization of the Adam and Eve Colony, and Jesus who was Celibate was made Asexual before he went up into space with our High Tech Asexual Ancestors. Maybe some others in the Bible were made Asexual, that God our High Tech Ancetors worked with when they were here, in the Old Testament.
Adam and Eve were Asexual Twin male and female Humans, and should not have reproduced by Body.

The whole colony of Asexual Twins did reproduce by Body, and what you see today, is what Mis-bred Genetics you get you, when Asexual Twins reproduce by Body Birth. A mixture of Heterosexual, Bisexual, Heterosexual, Transsexual, Pedophiles, Child and Spouse Abusers, Fornicators, Adulterers, Pornography, Disease, Killing, War and Death.

I sure wish I knew why Asexual male and female Twins 'fell' to Body Reproduction. The ones saved at Judgement Day, would benefit from this information when they go to a new Planet.

There is a wonderful world out there where Humans evolved up to compatable Male and Female Clone Helpmeets, where Peace and Equal Sharing, like in a spaceship is the Lifestyle, and there is none of the problems on Earth, with all the Unequal examples of Humans and the wages of Sin.

corbin

Nice JT,

You young man have some class. I don't know anyone so easy to goad into vile rants. Maybe we should just ignore each other. We will both die someday, and the Catholic Church will still be around so maybe there isnt much of a point in pushing your buttons anymore. Maybe that is what Jesus would do. Maybe he did just that before he established papal supremacy. Who knows really? Have a good night.

Patricia

I made it through about a third of the article on Trinity, which rendered the meat and the controversy. I think what I skimmed was just the ritual.

I just love it when theologians insist that God has no sex but should be called "Father". It is simply dishonest. A lie. Same with Christ as Son. If you don't want to imply a "sex", then you don't CHOOSE words that bring to mind a sexual connotation.

The most offensive part of this human-male constructed nonsense goes beyond the exclusion of all "female" referents. It is the fact that there are great somersaults turned to appropriate the best of female qualities. Then make them God given or possessed by the Father, but don't go thinkin' that the Father is male.......Give me a break!!!

It makes sense to call God, Mother-Father, is much more intellectually honest, and reforms terms created by archaic social constructs.

As for Mary being made a Queen Mother of God.......you might as well give her a corsage and gift card to Bloomingdales and tell her what an irrelevant old woman she is, Corbin. Here's the basic underlying message, "Let Father have his way with you and we will throw up a few statues, use you as a role model for virginity and motherhood (two important means to control women) while completely excluding you from the power structure of the organization or the key philosophy.

Is that a church spire in your pocket and on your head, big boy, or are you just so enamored of your male referents that you can only create sovereign masturbation?

corbin

Here is a good article on why Catholics call God Father

http://www.catholic.net/RCC/Periodicals/Faith/Jul-Aug99/God2.html

Your comments on our Blessed Mother illustrate your ignorance of her place in Catholic Spirituality. She is the Queen of Heaven, the Ark of the Covenant, the House of Gold. Sorry if virginity and motherhood are virtues for us that all women are called to but that is part of being a created being in the image and likeness of God, you have a calling. (All men are called to fatherhood, like God is). St. Louis De Montfort has a good book on her that will enrich your human life experience. Get to know Mary, and maybe she'll help you get over your genital obsessed politics.

Patricia

Convenient to call me genital obsessed when it is Benedict that would reduce the role of woman to a pantheistic womb. And the article that you linked argues that God is MASCULINE. M-A-S-C-U-L-I-N-E. And YOU argue that all men are called to fatherhood, like God. How much more penis-centric can you get? Except, perhaps, to wear a miter and robe that turns your entire body into one big phallic symbol.

Dolores Lear

Presbyterian Church (USA)
A report referral above.
Line 52. The Trinity: God's Love Overflowing.
Line 305. Speaking of the Triune God.
Page 7. Line 347 - Line 356.
"Simarly, trinitarian language has been used to support the idea that God is male an that men are superior to women. For this and other distortions of trinitarian doctrine we repent. God is not male. - No, only Creatures who have bodies can be male or female. But God is a Spirit and has no body. A trinitarian understnding of God makes it clear that the Creator of gender is not subject to it. - Therefore, we must always be guided by the words of scripture and creed that speak of God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit."

Me.
So, the Father is a Spirit without a male or female body. The Holy Spirit is without a male or female body. Is there a mistake to say a Human is the Son of the Spirit Trinity?
How about the High Tech Knowledge Spirit Trinity: God the Source of the Atom and Electro-magnetic Force, the three elements that make up Physical Life as we know it, that is visible.
This Son and Holy Spirit do flow from the Father, none of them visible, but when combined, do make visible Life.

Since the Christian Trinity has an invisible Father, Source of Life, and Holy Spirit that is invisible, it should not be too difficult to understand that the Atom is also an invisible part of the Holy Trinity. Why give the invisible Atom a gender and call it the Son?

How did the Christian Trinity end up being called "Three 'Persons' in One Godhead?"
Because of the loss of High Tech Knowledge?
If the Presbyterians now say the Father is Spirit, and we know the Holy Spirit is Spirit, it will be interesting to see if they also make the Son of the Trinity, Spirit also. Or, if Jesus a Human will still be part of the three 'persons' in one.
Jesus did go up into Space with the 'Father' in physical form, and sat beside him. So if the Father is Spirit, maybe the Son is male and the Holy Spirit is female, like the past Trinity religions of Father, Mother and Son.

I like the High Tech Invisible Trinity of the Source of Life, of the Atom and the Electro-Magnetic Force. We should do away with mouth worship, in pagan temples, and start being the Caretakers of the Life made by the High Tech Trinity, instead of being the Killers of the Religous Trinity.
The visible 'Father' was our High Tech Ancestors that Colonized Life on Planet Earth.
Pure-bred Male and female Clones they made them, and they are male and female Clones also.
We should not worship our High Tech Clone Brothers/Sisters of Life. This race of Humans, called Gods by Fallen Humans, do travel in spaceships and live on planets, in Equality and Peace. They colonize Life like themselves, on other planets like Earth. We are in their image.
They do have Eternal Physical Life because they have the High Tech to keep their Physical Bodies Pure-bred and can escape a planet when their Sun dies.
That is why they appeared to Fallen Man as Humans, they 'were' High Tech Humans, that supernaturally flew up in the air, and out into Space, like we do today.

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