Thursday, August 02, 2007

The Metaphorical Language of Heaven and Hell.

I was thinking about this God-thing this morning. I was thinking about the difference between what religion states about the unknowable and what the unknowable states about itself through the sheer force of its being (to those inclined to feel it) and the archetypes it presents itself through; white light refracting through a prism into the natural world of color and dimension, of sight and sound. Then I passed through a forum where a particular aspect of this enormous mental construct was under discussion. Remember that this subject behind the behind is a pinpoint of essence, no matter how pervasive or absent it may be or appear to be.

For the sake of easier conversation let us refer to this subject as Truth, instead of God. The word ‘God’ makes some people uneasy, principally because of religion. Religion is a blind man dressed up in huge and cumbersome ornamental robes that touch the uneven ground over which actual life travels. It’s a vehicle of sorts. It’s a cover of sorts. It’s something that tells us there is an origin, an end and a dance of circumstance between. It’s a playbook for the game of life. Unfortunately there are a number of playbooks and they contradict each other. They compete against each other and become businesses that depend on the drama of gain and loss, independent of the thing they represent. Since the thing they represent is indifferent to these concerns, one could posit that they don’t represent it. One could say that religion is a cloudy mirror.

Religion creates argument. It’s an argument that can’t be won because it takes place in the phenomenal world. It is like arguing about the qualities of an orange tree without considering the mystery of the soil. Something happens in the soil. We don’t see it happen. That doesn’t stop it from happening. Some process is also happening that informs the soil and causes it to go about its business. We know this is true because we can hold that orange in our hand; even if we have no idea how the orange got there. You don’t always have to know how something works to profit from it.

It comes down to this; do you want to argue about it or do you want to understand it? Truth is like the sun. Sometimes the weather obscures it but it is always shining. When it sets at night or, more accurately, when the Earth rotates beyond its rays, it is still shining. This accounts for that so-called ‘dark night of the soul’ if you ‘think’ about it. Truth is there whether we perceive it or not and that is the basis of faith. Everything in the natural world and the manufactured world is a metaphor for something inside of us; is an example of the ongoing struggle for understanding. If you want to understand that is one thing. If you don’t want to understand, or you want existence to mirror your mindset, that is something else. We can convince ourselves of anything and logic and the other tools of the mind will accommodate our efforts. It will look just the way we want it to, even if the world itself conflicts with it at every turn while conflicting with itself.

Given what we have seen historically there is every reason to be a skeptic. However; do you want to understand or do you want to argue about it? This is the key. This is what “seek and ye shall find” means.

Let’s digress for a moment. The English drive on the left. Where else does this happen where it wasn’t a former colony? Why does a tiny country like England have such power over the world’s money supply? Does it? How can this tiny country with no natural resources have the strongest currency in the world?

Hebrew is written from right to left. What other language uses this motif? How does Israel, one of the tiniest countries in the world with one of the world’s smallest populations, exert so much influence in the world at so many levels? I have presented these examples of unusual diversion for one reason. I want you to think about it and watch what your mind does while you do. I’m making no judgment about anything and I’m not implying anything. This has nothing to do with whatever it may mean. This has to do with anomalies and effects and what your mind does when you consider them- or does not consider them, or reacts against them, or forms some opinion. What does it mean?

Occult forces express themselves through language and gestures and symbols. Money is a symbol. Let us consider gestures. Many of you know that America was founded by Masons. You may also know that judges in courtrooms use Masonic gestures to communicate things to other members of the court. Some of you know that government and corporate logos and icons represent force in a particular application. But what does it mean? What does it mean?

Hebrew is taken directly from the Chaldean flame alphabet. No one just materialized a Hebrew language out of thin air. Who made the Jews the chosen people? The Jews did. Who made the Muslims possessors of the true way and everyone else infidels? The Muslims did. Who guarantees Christians entré to Heaven and sends everyone else to Hell? The Christians did. Truth, God, did not do these things. These are the fruit of religion. If you reject truth because of religion you throw the baby out with the bathwater.

Religion and business and government are all in bed together. It’s always been that way, even when they appear to be in conflict with each other. The point is to wonder, to inquire, to explore. Do you want to argue or do you want to understand? Good and evil, what are they? They change places in regular fashion. They are exactly opposite in one land as compared to another in respect of certain things.

I believe there is one commander who cannot be opposed. It is. It animates and contains you. Knowing this I have nothing to worry about in the long run, in the short run or in the chicken run. Does this mean I won’t get smacked in the ear (metaphorically speaking) now and then? ...of course not. It means that I am being smacked in order to direct me back on to the track just as the reins will inform a horse where it should go. Someone once said, “When God comes to awaken you he gently shakes your shoulder. If you do not respond, he shakes you harder. If you still do not respond, he picks up a two by four.” Like one of my uncles used to say when I was being a disobedient sprout, “Those who cannot hear must feel.”

When you know the truth or possess some part of the truth then you are immediately protected from the consequences of lies concerning it. You have information and knowledge. If you know how to operate a sailboat then you are much better off than one who does not in the same stormy circumstances. If you know how to counteract it, you are in a much better position to defend yourself against a punch than if you do not; but if you are not paying attention the whole situation changes. Paying attention is probably the most important thing you can do. Knowing what to pay attention to is highly important, just think about the sailboat on stormy seas. Then there is the higher knowledge of knowing when to go and when not to go out upon the ocean in the first place. You might get that information from the weather bureau. You might have a ‘weather eye’ and you might have an internal weather report. Which of these has more value?

There are languages and symbols and signs that have particular power. Some apply to the physical world and some apply in other theaters. There is both currency and power in every realm. Some people want to control things here and some people want to go somewhere else. But while you are here there are conditions that, however much they change, will always be the same. Caesar has one power and Truth has another, or so it seems. Is that actually so? Is it not the same power applied to different ends? Does it not all lead to the same end, no matter where you may think you are headed? I could set out for Kansas City while traveling the entire world on my way, or I could go directly to Kansas City. I’m still going to get to Kansas City. It will take a lot longer, depending on whether we want to argue or understand.

Somewhere in the Bible, Jesus is recorded as saying something to the effect that he comes to bring a sword, to set brother against brother; basically implying conflict although he is known as the Prince of Peace. People find it hard to understand what he is saying but it is quite simple. The truth doesn’t have friends and family. The truth doesn’t compromise and make deals. The truth just is. If Jesus is the truth and the way and the light then that means he is counter to all of the world’s machinations and allurements. If you cleave to the truth then surely the world will be in conflict with you and you with your brother and your family. Hence, “Pick up your cross and follow me.” Hence, “Let the dead bury the dead.” Hence, “crucify him!” Hence this and hence that.

I’m not a Christian. I don’t see any difference between Christ and Krishna (note the similarity). I don’t have any use for religions. But I’m not going to throw the baby out with the bathwater. If you have inquired within yourself, relentlessly and with passionate ardor, if you have closed yourself into a room for 3 days without food or distraction and you have earnestly sought to the center of your being and found nothing then you may be on to something. Then again, if you persist and you persist, I declare you will find something. But if you have not done this then what have you found? If you have not looked then what have you found? If you have not explored the phenomena of language and signs and symbols and seen that they are mechanisms of crowd control then what do you know? If you cannot see the population of the world herded over wide highways and if you have not considered what those who pursue another path have said, then on what do you base the argument for what you believe and do not believe? If you have not walked the walk then how would you know where it leads? All of the contradictions and seemingly absurd statements make sense if you have taken the trouble to analyze them with an open mind and to pursue their hidden meaning but, Do you want to argue or do you want to understand? You can’t force a rose to open; all things in their time. You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink. It’s up to the horse.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ahhhh, bee-you-tee-full :)

know thy self... only then can you know (all) others

heal thyself?

= healthy self

knowing thy self leads to truth...being (becoming) set free? feels like... and the truth (of your self/selves) will surely set you free :)

Fabulous essay mister. Grazie mille, am

Anonymous said...

Do you want to argue about it or do you want to understand?
Ref: Sixth comment down
'Anonymous said...
I practiced law...'

Tony

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I really got a lot out of this article.

I'm curious, is your wikipedia entry accurate? Did you really do all those things and meet all those people?

Is there anywhere where I can read more about your life? It sounds fascinating.

Thanks

Visible said...

Yes, those things happened. When they contacted me about this they wanted input from me. I decided against that because it feels wierd to get involved in that sort of thing.

Someone interviewed people and researched newspaper articles. I guess there is stuff on the net but I don't really know about where it would be. I try not to get into that side of it.

I find that things they didn't mention were far more remarkable than whatever is there. Lots of people have met many more people than me. It doesn't mean much in terms of who you are.

Somewhere in the archives of this blog is a six part series I did on my life but I can't tell you where it is.

I appreciate the interest but I wouldn't know where to send you to read up on me.

Lady Jane said...

"It comes down to this; do you want to argue about it or do you want to understand it?"

You have hit the nail on the head.

Only to take the nail out and inflict something pretty untrue onto the muslims. This whole group-think ideology about muslims declaring Islam to be the supreme religion and whatever that entails for whomever hears it.

You know....the Quran states very clearly what is the superior way.

Not the muslims. Sorry...to "argue" as oppose to what you infer is "understanding". Understanding is nothing more than individual perception and no one can know what another percieves including what the definition of understanding is as it relates to argumentation.

You started well with this but then I see through my own perception of Islam that you feel this need to apologize for something.

Allah states quite clearly in the Quran that he will make Islam superior to all religions. It's in the text my friend. There is no need to apologize either for the text or how "muslims" put it into practice.

Not in my estimation anyway. I am also very sure that all non muslims are uncomfortable with it and that is why you have Sura 109 which eliminates any responsibility a muslim has in terms of the discomfort of nonmuslims in general regarding the "truth".

Salaam wa alaikum wa rahmattulah.

Visible said...

LJ, that's only dogma to me. I'm not interested in religions, too much harm comes from them with each of them considering themselves superior to the other. God is God period. I've met God and God didn't say become a Muslim because that is the only way I will have you... or anything else like that.

I hope you gain strength from what you follow and I wish you well. To my mind though, religion is like lined paper in grammer school, once you have learned to write you don't need lined paper any more.

Lady Jane said...

Ah well...dogma. Who taught you that word, dogma?

Either you are a muslim or you aren't. It is a literalist 'tradition' (for lack of a better word) you know. Which has become confused with fundamentalism. Either you believe the Quran is the "word" of Allah or you don't. If you do then you take it "as is". That doesn't mean you have to beat anyone over the head with it (all the time) but in my estimation..many people want to know exactly what we muslims thing about right now. Absolutely.

What you think is quite wonderful and you have a great talent for expressing yourself which tells me that you know where you are going.

Why bother then explaining that to anyone? ? Well. Exactly. I'm a poet you know and that urge to talk about things artistically is in some of us. Perhaps all of us.

There is quietude and there is quietude if you know what I mean.

Right now...because of Iraq, Lebanon, Palestine, etc....there isn't such a thing as quietude anymore. Everyone is talking about this and it isn't my fault that I am a muslim anymore than it is my doing that 9/11 happened in order to call everyone's attention to their "soul" and the direction their soul will eventually take: death.

Not my fault and not yours. What I do think however is that sometimes muslims are lying to others in order to spare their feelings. And that ends up being that they misrepresent what the Quran actually says.

Dogma. I'd suggest you avoid labeling Islam as an Ideology because it is not one. That is what you've been told to say and believe.

If someone tells you to go jump off a cliff (or blow yourself up in a terrorist attack)...do you do it just because they told you to?

Of course not..or I hope not anyway.

Stick to the text and realize not many people will like it right now...but that number is increasing and will increase further.

That is why the Quran says to be patient, not angry and most of all:

steadfast.

That is why Sayed Nasrallah, the secretary general of Hezbollah constantly reiterates that message:

we are steadfast.

All my best and don't be angry. Don't be angry.

Visible said...

One of my constant subjects (Smoking Mirrors) is the perfidious influence of Zionism and I am (consider myself to be) a friend of Nasrullah; whom I consider a great warrior and Hezbollah and Hamas.

I lived with and studied with Bawa Muhaiyadeen for two years in Philadelphia. He was a Sufi saint and well over a hundred years old when I met him. The power in this dimunitive man was incredible. He was not 5 feet tall and weighed less that 80 pounds. He seldom ate or slept. I loved, do love him.

However, those around him were another story; dogmatic, inflexible and the rest. There were a number of wonderful people but then there were the rest.

I think often of going to see the Sheik on Cyprus- I am drawn to those who are close to God and I just don't concern myself with the vehicle they use; Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism... I only consider their words. There is a place where all religions meet and that is where I am comfortable outside of texts and rules and threats of punishment. God has given me none of these sensations.

I do respect people's religions and know that some do find the author; others spill blood and enslave others.

I'm not angry at the moment and seldom if at all. Pretty much I just am and there's not much more than that. I write here because I am compelled to. I don't think it has anything to do with me except in passing through.

I don't assume it is all the truth. It is merely what I have found and a subject for consideration or to be discarded. Soon enough I will be on my way and this will be gone. Whatever happens in between is just what is necessary for me to drop my illusions and embrace the light. That's it for me.

Anonymous said...

Very difficult to explain Visible.
Religion, A set of beliefs, values, and practices based on the teachings of a spiritual leader.
Religion, Belief in and reverence for a supernatural power or powers regarded as creator and governor of the universe.
Men make religions and write books on how those religions should be followed.
Men interpret those writings as to how to apply those writings to our personal life.
Beyond how we live our daily life is the fact that the universe has its own set of rules. Rules whether we believe they exist or not influence every moment of our lives.
No one god or prophet is the author of those rules, the universe supplies them automatically as part of its being. What man calls gods/prophets tap into this power and present it as ‘theirs’. If there is a creator of this wonderful place, the universe and beyond, it is the sole author and sustainer or those rules, both spiritual and physical.
Well, there you go.
Tony

Caryl said...

Hi Les,
Greetings from Philadelphia. I am enjoying all of your blogs.
Religion is a difficult topic to discuss fairly - I thought you did a pretty good job on the whole.
May I suggest looking at it from the point of view of Robert Pirsig's distinction between "dynamic" and "static" quality. Everything that exists needs to develop a structure whereby it can attain the level it has attained without deteriorating - this is "static" quality. Religion, social manners, marriage, the rule of law - these are all examples of "static" quality. Pirsig argues that what has happened in modern societies is that the elite, the intellectuals, withdrew their support from the structures of static quality. So we are looking at a deterioration of society across the board - leaving people very vulnerable and manipulable by entities of the State, money and power and the incessant fanning of the flames of appetite and desire. Dynamic quality is something else again - sometimes it can take place in the ambience of religion and sometimes not.
Anyhow, I find his ideas a better handle to get a grasp of what religion is about.
Thank you again for your interesting thoughts.

Anonymous said...

I am only a layman when it comes to religions but it seems to me that the Quran, Bible etc. are 'How to use' manuals for us humans.
All very good instructional manuals. All written by man. All interpreted by the current generations. (And by default – all fallible).
And by all appearances, Islam is what Christianity should be.
But as Visible says, what happens when you look beyond all of this.
Tony