Wine for kosher needs: 7-1-09
A lovely mission church: 7-3-09

East and West afterlifes: 7-2-09

Venpier-2

VENTURA, Calif. -- Sometimes I'm asked about the difference in the way Western and Eastern religions think about the afterlife. (I distrust Wikipedia, but click here for its entry on the subject of Eastern religions.)

The Ventura Pier (pictured here from my 9th floor window in the Crowne Plaza Hotel) offers a good illustration of Eastern thinking, though keep in mind that I'm speaking in broad terms.

Imagine the pier is the path of your life. (No doubt your life began after this pier's life did. The pier was built in 1872 and measured then 1,958 feet. It was renovated in 1993 and the original length -- shortened by various storms and whatnot over the years -- was restored. But on Dec. 13, 1995, a huge storm damaged 400 feet of the pier. It then was repaired, but not to its original length.)

At any rate, if the pier is your life, what happens is that you live it to the end and then you drop off and disappear into the ocean, which is to say you merge with the oneness and universality of God, you lose yourself in some kind of mysterious universal consciousness. That would be one way of putting the Eastern approach, though it doesn't quite account for belief in reincarnation, which some Eastern religions teach.

As this description says of Hinduism, the afterlife "usually means the dissolving of all personality into the unimaginable abyss of Brahman."

By constrast, in Western religion (Christianity, Judaism, Islam), when you get to the end of the pier and drop off, you aren't just one drop of water dissolving into a sea. Rather, you are rescued, saved, redeemed, and you retain your individuality -- whether in mercy or judgment. In some sense, you wind up standing alone before God, though as part of a faith community.

In many ways, that's what the Christian doctrine of the "Resurrection of the Body" is all about. It's a way of saying that whatever your core essence is, that can be resurrected by God's grace. That doctrine does not -- unlike Greek philosophy -- presume we have immortal souls. Only God is immortal. If we are to achieve immortality it is only by God's grace. But we are granted immortality as individuals, and we don't lose ourselves in the ocean.

When I walked the length of the pier the other evening with my wife and a couple of friends, I found it reassuring that I didn't have to drop off the end and test either Western or Eastern theology. Rather, I could turn around and go back to the hotel. Which I did, cheating death once more.

* * *

IS OBAMA STILL UNCHURCHED?

Has President Obama chosen a church to attend yet? The politics blog of Christianity Today says not yet, but that he may make the chapel at Camp David his church. Please notice the wide variety of comments on the CT piece. Yikes. (You recall that Obama quit his Chicago church after all the controversy over its former pastor, Jeremiah Wright.)

* * *

P.S.: You can follow me now on Twitter at http://twitter.com/BillTammeus

Comments

Will Graham

Bill, I wouldn't worry too much about the comments on the CT article, since probably few people actually read them or pay attention. Iggy, for example, points out that some 300 people a day read your blog, but then makes the mistakes of assuming that they are also reading HIS COMMENTS...when the site meter indicates that, according to time spent, that is probably not even close to the case.

I do note that SUSAN said to IGGY last night that "it seems like you don't really believe in free speech for everyone".

REALLY?! You are just noticing that SUSAN? Iggys has been telling Christians for a YEAR AND A HALF to SHUT UP and KEEP THEIR BELEIFS TO THEMSELVES. And he means it! That is what he was taught growing up, and if he could enforce it legally, he would.

That is, by the way, where the new atheists are going by trying to label religious educaton by parents CHILD ABUSE...Dawkins, Harris, Hitchens, ad nauseum, they all call for it.

But IGGY's DEMAND...you notice he keeps telling CHRISTIANS what they MUST DO...comes in the wake of his failure.

His organization did not grow to the hundreds and hundreds he bragged about to the Community of Reason, the Atheist Relief Fund never materialized, the Post Card Campaign never got off the ground, the atheist blood drive was a pittance compared to local churches, etc. etc.

He has admitted this by his actions in dropping our of the meetups and leaving Cole and others holding the bag.

The meetups are not longer important enough. His cause is not great enough. It is now HIS BUSINESS that he BRAGS about being in cities all over the MIDWEST...an ANONYMOUS BUSINESSS by the way, LOL!...that is important.

His ACTIONS show us the results of his bragging...although his words remain the same.

Will Graham

I want everyone to note that IGGY does not go to atheist meetings anymore, just ocassional breakfasts and movies!

You see, HIS TIME is too valuable for just "Bulls...ing" as he puts it. (His words)

So I guess the rest of you who do go are just poor saps with time on your hands and nothing better to do.

Your admission said much more than you realize, Igor Dybal.

Dolores Lear

Bill:
"In many ways, that's what the Christian doctrine of the "Resurrection of the Body" is all about. It's a way of saying that whatever your core essence is, that can be resurrected by God's grace. That doctrine does not -- unlike Greek philosophy -- presume we have immortal souls. Only God is immortal. If we are to achieve immortality it is only by God's grace. But we are granted immortality as individuals, and we don't lose ourselves in the ocean."

Me:
The Ocean is like the Universe of Elements, Seen and Unseen. GOD, not a Human, is the Maker of these Elements.

The God/Us in Genesis, were High Tech Humans, with Eternal Physical Life After Birth, on Planets and in Spaceships.

Today, we give Humans Face Lifts, and Body Regeneration Operations that extend our Lifespans.

But until we Reproduce High Tech Humans in the lab, and have High Tech Spaceships to escape our Planet when it Dies, we cannot have Eternal Physical Life After Birth on Planets.

The Male and Female Clones in Genesis, lost this High Tech, when they Reproduced Defective Children by Heterosexual Body Birth.

Eternal Physical Life After Birth, is for Purebred Male and Female Clone Helpmeets, not for Defective Children.

High Tech Humans today, still have a Way to go, with our High Tech Science, to Learn this type of Human Reproduction, for Eternal Physical Life After Birth on Planets and in Spaceships.

Body Birth Humans resulted in Division, Disease, and Generation Birth, Death, and Rebirth, with Earth's Elements.

What do we do now, with our High Tech Nuclear Bombs on Land and Sea?

In Revelation, some Virgin Males will be Saved, by our Human Ancestors to be taken to a New Planet, like Adam, to start over Again.

Will they Fall like the Adam and Eve Generation? Or keep their Eternal Physical Male and Female Clone Life, After Birth, with Balanced High Tech Science like our Human Ancestors?

Will Graham

A British Member of Parliament, George Galloway, who excuses terrorists, is speaking tonight at the Overland Park Marriot.

This local article from the KC Jewish Chronicle shows that he is sponsored by local Muslim and Arab groups.

http://www.kcjc.com/200906268567/news/local-groups-to-host-brit-who-justifies-terror.html

Dolores Lear

Why do most Humans call their God a He? Or a One God. Or a Father, Mother, and Son Trinity God? Or a Father, Son, Holy Spirit a Trinity God? Or a God in many forms?

Many Religions accept Genesis, as part of their Religious Writings.

Genesis 1:1. KJV. "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters."

With High Tech Knowledge, this is describing the Colonization of a Planet with a Water atmosphere like Venus. Not the Universe, with Galaxies and Solar Systems.

Genesis then records the Colonization of Planet Earth. God Created an Atmosphere/Firmament on Earth, Supernaturally with High Tech Science, to separate the Watery Atmosphere.

How can a Human He, in our Image, Create the Elements of the Universe, and Life as we Know it, made from these Elements? No Human Knows how the Universes began.

In Genesis 1, the Water Atmosphere was separated, the Atmosphere on Earth was set up, and the Species were added.

Genesis 1:26a. "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness."

Genesis 2:7. " And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life: and man became a living soul."

Genesis 2:19a. "And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air:"

The beasts were made the same way as man. By High Tech Science on Earth.

Genesis 2:21,22. "And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man."

God/Us, the LORD God is in our Human Image/Likeness, Male and Female, not a Spirit.

Continue.

Dolores Lear

Continued.

God/Us is Male and Female. God the High Tech Human Father and Mother, of Life on Earth, Created/Colonized Life on Earth. They were not a He God/Spirit.

God is also called, a Spirit 'Being' and a Higher 'Being'.

The Higher 'Beings' were High Tech Human Males and Females, not just a He. What is a Spirit 'Being'? Natural Born Human' description, of High Tech Humans?

With Human Body Birth, High Tech Science Knowledge was lost. In Religion and Myth, many Gods were Father, Mother and Son. So why was 'He' used for God?

After Jesus became God, Equal to the Father and 'Holy Spirit', were they a He God? But where was the Mother in the Christian Trinity, like the many Man-Made Trinity Religions?

Today, Humans have the High Tech Science, of Humans flying in Space, and Reproducing a Human Fetus in the Lab, and Cloning Animals. Supernaturally?

And putting Humans into a deep sleep for operations. This is like the writings, of Natural Humans with 'Supernatural' Gods in our Image.

These Religious Writings and Myths, of Supernatural Gods, Goddesses and Angels, can be translated as High Tech Science Humans.

Some Writings are about the Peace Gods, the LORD God in Genesis, and some are about the Killer Gods like the Noah/Atlantis Society, who were like the High Tech Killer Humans today. The LORD God Human Species of Genesis 1, 2, does not Kill.

Who or What is the Supernatural He God, and the Supernatural Trinity Gods, and all Man-Made Gods, Seen and Unseen, of Humans on Earth? Why do Humans build Temples with their Hands, and put rocket-shaped steeples on them?

Memories of the the Peace 'Gods' Spaceships, or the Noah/Atlantis Killer God Weapons and Shuttles like ours today?

IGGY - www.KCFreeThinkers.org

Susan,

In short - I respect people as individuals REGARDLESS of what they believe when it comes to religious beliefs they hold. However, some ifs and buts...

I respect beliefs of religious people when it comes to RELIGION the same way I respect views of astrologers, alchemists, fortune tellers, card/palm readers and the likes of Sylvia Brown, etc. If you believe in a green leprechaun, we have some talking to do. Religous people in my book are classifed according to their contribution to the world.

I RESPECT PEOPLE but not the ideas they may hold. I know it's tough to understand how this can be, but I don't RESPECT people for being a golfer, or biker, or becaue they like red cars - does this make sense?

I respect people for the PRACTICAL IDEAS THEY HOLD TO MAKE THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE. E.g. I don't have a problem with a Xian who is going on an education/medical mission for the sake of their god (in their hearts and brains) AS LONG AS THEY KEEP THE SPACE ALIEN out of it and not pollute the minds of people they are interacting with it. The moment they use UNSUBSTANTIATED FABLES/FAIRY TALES to do something, this is where I draw the line.

I don't have a problem with religoius conversations and freedom of speech of the religous people - what I have a problem with is RELIGOUS INFLUENCE ON EVERY DAY LIFE - i.e. 'PRACTICAL IMPRACTICALITIES" religion imposes on the world, stifles creative thinking and DEMANS RESPECT FOR IT.

I don't need personally any resepct for my views, I don't ask for it, I don't demand it - I systematically dismantle what I accept (not on faith) to be a "ridiculous" INFLUENCE of religious faith on the world. I don't have a problem with the faith per se, as long as it is kept at bay with the demons that Jesus drove out of a herd of pigs and then drowned them poor animals in a see.

(Continued)

memberofKCFreeThinkers.org

Beautiful photo, but if I was to compare a pier to life I would prefer the Santa Monica Pier. http://www.santamonicapier.org/ It’s not as old (built in 1922) but is more with my philosophy of life: a lot of fun.

Bill, I like cheating death, too. As far as all the other wishful thinking I live in the natural world more like Santa Monica Pier. I miss it. I have some extra tickets. Maybe I’ll fly out soon.

Jdmahurin: How Jesus really lived? It is doubtful, in my opinion, jesus as a historical character, ever truly lived at all. I don’t believe he was even a person much less the messiah. Not much in history to show he lived…

I’m not sure what you are talking about. Who are you addressing? Who is Darrel? Darrel Ray does not post here. In your post yesterday you are unclear, who you are claiming, are calling people stupid. I have sent you my email address. We can discuss this in words before we meet. Just you and me. Sound fair?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T69TOuqaqXI

Peace For the Sake of Goodness Cole

memberofKCFreeThinkers.org

Will Said, “Your admission said much more than you realize, Igor Dybal.

Will, you are delusional. Reality has escaped you. The supernatural fits you perfectly.

There are bigger issues than Obama choosing a church. I think he should choose the Santa Monica pier for his religion.

I've Converted To EVERY Religion (Just In Case)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PqJpZOljjG8&feature=related

Peace For the Sake of Goodness Cole

adam harrison

AS to Obama choosing a church, who cares? He joined the church in the first place for its community organizing advantages, as he admits in his book.

When he got all he needed, he quit. Meanwhile, the war goes on, the debt increases, and he proposes grand plans that can't work out without inducing massive inflation.

AS to IGGY, it is hilarious that he no longer go the Meetups, because his TIME IS TOO VALUABLE.

The rest of you losers, with time on your hands, can keep going, however...he might show up for breakfast or a movie though! Hahahahahahahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!!!

AS to respect, I systematically dismantle what I don't accept; irrational claims like the "Big Bang" (which Stephen Hawking admits we don't know a damn thing about) and the development of intelligence from inanimate matter, none of which can be demonstrated, even in principle.

IN the meantime, you have people like Cole who rely on YOU TUBE and Wikipedia scholarship making claims that Jesus didn't exist and other baseless accusations. And if you disagree Cole you mail e mail me, and so can anyone else, at Jeremy7@nycmail.com

I suspect you won't, as you seem to confuse intellectual engagement and FACTS with insults and ridicule.

I can just imagine what kind of "facilitator" you are, Cole! LOL!

adam harrison

Cole Morgan, since you rely on Wikipedia so much, here is the Wikipedia entry on the existence of Jesus.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Historicity_of_Jesus

With few exceptions, the article points out, scholars accept Jesus as an historical figure. Your claim that there is not much in history to show that he lived is baseless, and amounts to little more than a servicing of your agenda.

Who ya kiddin, sport?

jdmahurin

Cole - my apologies to you and IGGY. I miscredited my response, it was IGGY I was speaking to. I posted a response late last night but for some reason it was not added.

Not to create or extend an argument - but historians agree almost unanimously as to the existence of a Jewish man (Yeshua) who lived approx 4 B.C. to 30 A.D., was baptized by John the Baptist, and was executed (crucified)by the Roman government for political dissent. To deny his relevance in history is debatable - to deny his existence is not.

My post last night was simply this. To insult a person's intellect or views is paramount to disrespect. You cannot, as you say, respect the person and disrespect his views. They are not compatible. To truly respect someone IS to respect their opinions. Don't confuse respect with compliance - they are not the same. But "free thinking" is impossible without dissenting thougt. To insult another's viewpoint would discredit my own, not lend it credence.

RichB

Life and death in Christ are contradictory, paradoxical ideas. Death leads to life, as well as the other way around. In the Orthodox Christian tradition, we talk more about death at baptisms than at funerals. Baptism depicts our new life by putting on the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ. Death reminds us of our hope in the resurrection.

IGGY - www.KCFreeThinkers.org

jdmahurin wrote>>>>.To insult a person's intellect or views is paramount to disrespect. You cannot, as you say, respect the person and disrespect his views. They are not compatible. To truly respect someone IS to respect their opinions. Don't confuse respect with compliance - they are not the same.

****CHRISTIAN LOONEY ALERT FOR JDMAHURIN*****

Jesus must have not been disrespectful and NOT INSULTING other Jews intelligence when he went on the table overturning rampage in the temple and brought a whip with lead balls on the leather straps (instrument of torture, or let's say equivalent of AK-47 to church to day?)

What the hell did the space alien's child display?

Did Jesus respect their views? You must be delusional, my friend. He called them "vipers" and used the word "raka?" - something like today for a black person "Nigger?"

Aren't you Xians a bit too old to have an imaginary friend and a book of fiction as a guiding light for your life? Go for it, just don't demand respect for ridiculous ideas based on "absolute obsoletes" of the Bronze Age.

Piggy Diabolical

Will Graham

No contradiction, Rich...if God exists. If God did not exist, the paradox would be on why there should be any coherent abstract mental concepts whatsoever, since life does not arise from non life, and inanimate matter does not give rise to intelligence.

This is irrefutable. even by insult and innuendo! LOL!

Red Biddy

Bill, you might very well say "Yikes" to some of the comments on the Christianity To-day piece about President Obama's reluctance to choose a church to take his family too ! It's unbelievable that some people still think he's a Moslem.
I've been checking up on the religious affiliation of past US Presidents. There's a good web site for this research - not Wikipedia ! Easy to find under "Religious Affiliation of U.S. Presidents.
It's kind of interesting to note which religions have never been represented. i.e. no Lutherans, no Jews, no Latter-day Saints, no Pentecostals, no Muslims, no Eastern Orthodox, no Churches of Christ and of course no Buddhists, Hindus, Taosts.
I think Abraham Lincoln - the greatest President of all in my opinion, had it right by not going to any church at all !

Dolores Lear

adamh:
"I don't accept; irrational claims like...the development of intelligence from inanimate matter, none of which can be demonstrated, even in principle."

Me:
With High Tech Science, Humans do Know more about Life, than Natural Humans did.

In Genesis 1, with a High Tech translation, it records the Colonization of a null and void Planet with a water atmosphere, not the Start of the Universe we live in. The Supernatural God/Us were High Tech Humans.

As far as we Know, Everything that we see visible and invisible, including Humans are made from the same Basic Elements.

Whether we call them Atoms and ElectroMagentic Force, or any other of the Elements High Tech Science identifies, All Life is made from Elements, called Inanimate/Invisible or Visible Living Life?

Natural Humans cannot Know this Inanimate information. But with High Tech Translations, of Religious Writings and Myths, we can Prove High Tech Humans were on Planet Earth, two different times in our Natural Human History before the 1900s.

'In the beginning' at Colonization of Planet Earth, and during the High Tech Noah/Atlantis Society before the Planetary Flood.

That High Tech Planetary Society, Killers like Humans are today, was destroyed, during the time the whole Planet was Flooded, and the Axis was Changed.

Their High Tech Building Remains are still on, and buried in, our New Top Strata.

Humans need to Understand our Past, Stop Over reproducing, and Quit Killing Each Other, so Humans can 'Evolve' to the 'Peace' Equal High Tech Science, like the Humans God/Us, that Colonized Earth.

There is a High Tech Human Peace Species with Eternal Physical Life After Birth, on Planets and in Spaceships, recorded in Scripture, that does Know about Inanimate Elements.

jdmahurin

Iggy-
I find it interesting that you in one post deny the very existence of Jesus and in the following speak of his actions to prove a point. The problem with your argument is this - I was speaking of respecting someones opinion - not their actions. Someone is welcome to think as they wish regarding my children and I will sit idly by. Let that same person take action to threaten/endanger/humiliate my children and that person now has crossed a grave threshold.

Jesus showed repeatedly - as do many people who share your views - that you can respect anothers opinion. His reaction was in response to their ACTIONS - not their opinions. Likewise, you have mentioned the "crazies" who preach their rhetoric at you in attempt to prove you wrong or change you. I wouldn't condone that type of behavior. Would I speak with someone about my past who had genuine interest? Of course, but it is not my habit to inject my beliefs where they are not welcome.

I take offense not at your worldview - but at your insistance that anyone who does not share it is somehow a lesser intellect. As far as I can see, your rants reflect an immaturity (insecurity?) that would suggest otherwise.

IGGY - www.KCFreeThinkers.org

****YOUR NONSENSICAL QUOTE FROM THE BIBLE FOR THE DAY****

1 Peter 2:13
Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man.

Romans 13:1-2
Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.

OK, so Xian crazies are fighting the losing battle against abortion becasue it's god's will. First off we know there is god's plan for abotion ("I knew you in the womb"), second you have to accept that ALL POWERS (legal, executive, legislative) is from the space alien Yahwheh (aka god, father of Jesus).

So, ABORTIONS BEING LEGAL IN THE U.S. are OF GOD! Yes, god has by sheer "blessing" of powers blesses abortions by "default".

Ouch... Christians, aren't you a bit too old to have an imaginary friend?

P.S. I've stopped reading John a couple of weeks ago, so I'll pick it up over the 4th of July weekend and will "bless" you folks with some more nonsensical Biblical quotes.

May Hannibal Lector, be peace upon him, clone you all new brains.

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