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Posts Tagged ‘freedom’

Christian Tribes

Christian Tribes

My  previous, wee post about socio-religio tribes has caused a wee bit of a stir among some of my Christian friends. I completely understand where they are coming from, having been a signed up member of their church-based mindset for most of my early adult life.

Simply put, their reservations run something like this:

‘Yes, freedom is a wonderful thing but doesn’t Christ ( The Nazarene) love his church and therefore it’s not a good idea to raise any criticism of its psycho-spiritual effects upon its members.’ 

‘Aren’t we wired for community and, in particular, for the community of God i.e. church.’

‘Isn’t it spiritually dangerous to be an ‘independent’ Christian, for there is safety in numbers.’

‘My church is wonderful and nothing like you describe.’

Let me try to briefly give a reply to each of these reactions, but before that I once again re-iterate that I’d rather write about Divine Love than faith group social dynamics. I have no vendetta against religious groups, their leaders or their members. We are free to choose our path of spiritual discovery; we are all human  and Loved by Divine Love no matter how we perceive these issues. I write for those damaged by their involvement in religious or spiritual groups and those still involved who are pondering their future involvement.  So here goes.

‘Yes, freedom is a wonderful thing but doesn’t Christ ( The Nazarene) love his church and therefore it’s not a good idea to raise any criticism of its psycho-spiritual effects upon its members.’ 

I believe that the church or ecclesia is simply those who follow the spiritual Way of Yeshua the Nazarene; those who through an awakening experience have touched the Transcendent as channeled by the words and life of the Galilean prophet. I do not believed that those who have awakened are any more loved by Divine Love than those who haven’t. All are born from Spirit Source and all will eventually come to a realisation of this, albeit for many, after the transition, known as death.

Yeshua himself spoke freely, using Jewish humour to expose the anomalies of the religious mindset and practices of his day. He spoke out of egoless Love but he did see Judaism as something that needed mollycoddled and left to its own devices.

The concern of the Nazarene was the Divine connection between his listeners and a welcoming God. Where religious or social taboos broke this connection he didn’t hold back in bringing such issues to light.

‘Aren’t we wired for community and, in particular, for the community of God i.e. church.’

For me community is the relational space whereby we share our mutual brokenness and Divine life flow. My community is constantly changing as folk touch my life and move on. I see it more as a river than a reservoir. A running exchange of Life flow rather than an institution that tries to keep the Divine Energy locked in its deep organisational wells. Of course some folk will become close friends, at least for a time. I see these as the Two or Three gathered into Yeshua’s name, a micro-community with a heart open to life and the changes that Spirit breath brings.

‘Isn’t it spiritually dangerous to be an ‘independent’ Christian, for there is safety in numbers.’

Safety from what? I no longer see the spiritual Way of Yeshua as a warfare with its ever-present prospect of being defeated by an external enemy. The only danger to our connection with Divine Love is our fractured psyche-soul or ego that attempts to inject fear and a strong sense of shame and rejection into our inner world. Divine Love is not fearful but confident of its Own Being. As with the Divine, so too with those realigned to its overwhelming Reality. Unfortunately, in my experience, religious groups may be the stage on which our fear driven ego does its thing, as it attempts to impress both God and man. The perceived place of ‘safety’ may in fact be more injurious to our psycho-spiritual health than the outer world of the non-believers.

No Christian, nor indeed any other spiritual adherent is truly independent. We are attached to one another at the level of mutual desire and indeed, if connected to Divine Love, we are automatically connected to others who carry the same Life Flow. We can sense this mutual belonging when we meet a fellow spiritual pilgrim on the Journey through life.

‘My church is wonderful and nothing like you describe.’

I cannot really say what your church is like. All our views are perceptions. Two folk may pick up completely different vibes whilst attending a faith gathering. Acceptance and welcome are a powerful drug, one that often clouds one’s judgement, at least until the social-spiritual cracks begin to appear. Desire transfer is by its very nature taking place at the level of the subconscious, promising relief to our childhood hurts and rejections. It can lead us towards Divine Love or to a dedication to the group identity, a pseudo-replica of true community. If you’re happy in your church, may your happiness continue. Based on my own experience, I reckon all things must pass in order for the new to come. But then again, maybe that’s just me and my unusual, Irish, psycho-spiritual wiring.

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The Flow

The Flow

For many people life is just one big long struggle. If that’s true then is it the way it was meant to be? Is such a struggle inevitable, even for those who claim to have contact with the Divine Source, the Creator of the whole human show? Are all our ups and downs self-generated or part of the Divine blueprint for our lives. In other words, is all vanity of vanities as the supposedly wise writer of Ecclesiastes claimed.

Well yes and no.

There are certainly levels of frustration experienced within our space-time existence. Yet are they necessary to the extent that we usually experience them? I believe not.

For many of our difficulties arise from our psychological attachments to things, people, and, dare I say it, beliefs. Let me explain.

The psyche-soul, our somewhat dysfunctional interface with the temporal world of form, is a very insecure little beast. Having believed itself to be detached from Divine Source and its Unconditional Love it isn’t a happy bunny. It’s an anxiety junkie that needs a regular fix of pseudo-security, a sense that it is not alone.

To the rescue come along the apparent life savers of material goods, social position, group identity and every so often, ideological belief. The immediate effect is pretty potent as a new sense of safety surrounds us from the nakedness of our internal being. The only trouble though is that in return, such attachments demand our loyalty; once welcomed into our psyche-soul they set up camp for good.

All growth is change and unsurprisingly attachments are not great fans of change. They have taken up a subliminally controlling stake in our sense of well-being and when the issue of letting them go is raised, they fight back with all the fury of a lover spurned. Only when we attempt to move on from our dependency on them do our attachments reveal themselves for what they really are. They are not after all our friends and allies but our masters, those who pull our psychic strings.

The Nazarene talked often of death and dying as a prerequisite to life. Like the Buddha before Him, Yeshua bar Yosef told it like it was. To enter the Queendom of God, that quality of life that we were destined to enjoy, a death was first required, namely the death of our psychological attachments. For the rich young ruler it was his  store of cash. For the bed ridden man at the pool of  Bethesda it was his paralysis. For the Scribes and Pharisees it was their religious expertise and its accompanying power plays. For Mary it was Yeshua Himself.

The letting go of such attachments is extremely painful but ultimately the greatest break for freedom that we can experience in this maze of psychological props. For on the other side of our screaming ego lies a Self, one designed to live free and secure in the River of Divine Love. Once we have passed through these mini Dark Nights Of The Soul, we discover life in all its fullness and flow.

A new buoyancy floods into the inner tanks of our being, lifting and carrying us through this inherent but ultimately unreal vale of tears. A new ease begins to oil the joints of our existence as we travel through life free of its glittering attachments, and their sure-fire promises of psychological protection.

As we journey through life Divine Love will bring us face to face with each of our secret attachments. One by one we have the opportunity to let go and find a new spiritual surge flood our being. In doing so we shall ditch many of our frustrations and self-created sufferings.

 

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The Nazarene

The Nazarene

People wonder why after all my experiences, both good and bad within evangelical Christianity that I don’t ditch the Nazarene for good and just become a deist or theist. Some suggest that I should become a Buddhist, Hindu or New Age guru and have done with it.

I must admit that some days, having just encountered the harshness and judgement of a supposed Jesus fan, I do consider taking such an existential leap. It’s very difficult at times hanging in there with a somewhat dysfunctional gang of folk who’re toxic to one’s psyche-soul. And yet when I’m about to jump, Yeshua usually pops into view, in the hidden caverns of my mind. One also alone and wounded by the religious barbs of believers in the God of Israel, the Nazarene stands and calls me aside.

‘Now you understand my brother, now you understand’.

I can’t leave one who has been so misunderstood and misrepresented by the tribe who go by his name. Thankfully the Galilean isn’t franchised to those dysfunctional expressions of the Christian faith that kill through their words and pseudo-superiority. Yeshua bar Yosef isn’t contained in a belief system, no matter what the guardians of cultural and theological boxes tell us.

No, the Nazarene is free and offers his followers freedom from ego that many haven’t yet taken him up on. The ‘taking up of his cross’ isn’t some macabre act or death wish but a rapturous call to freedom. Only ego suffers. As we  let it fall into the ground and die, we shall find a new Self step forward to take its place. The hidden treasure that’s lain buried under the topsoil of ego and its fearful ways.

The Galilean is seen by many as a quality controller, a ‘Lord’ who sits on high and keeps a beady eye on our religious observances. Nothing could be further from the truth. The Spirit Breath of the back to life Jewish rabbi is dancing among the sons and daughters of man. A liberator here to liberate, even from the oppressive power of his supposed religion, and all others to boot.

For many within Christendom, Yeshua is the blood sacrifice that paid for our sinly dysfunction. This in my earlier Evangelical incarnation was my raison d’être. I owed ‘this bleeding saviour’ the haunted one who looked at me suffering and sad, hanging on his Roman gibbet. ‘It should have been me up there,’ I reasoned, following the standard Evangelical line in disciple motivation. Claiming to victoriously deal with guilt my take on the Nazarene’s brutal demise would only increase guilt in the hidden depths of my being, driving me to ever increasing levels of religious ego devotion and zeal.

Today I no longer follow such a path, the one that leads to a debt paid Calvary. Instead I see the Nazarene teaching the masses on the flower filled hills of the Galilee. ‘You’ve heard it said, but I say unto you….’ brings me hope and new life. I guess the Nazarene is still speaking these words to his followers but who is listening, in our modern sermon saturated marketplace of seminars and DVDs. In short, I still identify with this Jewish son of Yosef, son of God, mainly because of his authentic spirituality, one that pierces through the ego defenses of my religious and social self.

Certainly the death of the Nazarene is radically important in its declaration of what God is not. Not a violent Supreme Being, one obsessed by blood and back payments, but One who has experienced mankind’s scapegoat experience as the wounded Lamb of Innocence. The bloody Roman execution of Yeshua shocks us out of our cultural God view and into a new, upside-down awareness that our morality systems are really killers in disguise.

For many of my friends within Mind, Body, Spirit circles may I respectively and humbly suggest that Yeshua is something more than an ascended avatar of the Divine. A manifestation of Divine Love and Wisdom for sure, but one who uniquely revealed the hidden nature of our righteous violence and its religio-politico networks. One roused from the grave in a way that no other spiritual Master appears to have been; a resurrection authentication by Divine Love of his character and message, one that would explode the lie of morality for all time.

So, in following the Nazarene may I suggest that we don’t follow a belief system, but a Living Presence, one that longs to walk with us along the psycho-spiritual lanes of life’s highway. Boxless and free Yeshua bar Yosef can well and truly look after himself without our help. He needs neither security cover nor fervent crusades to spread his touch of psycho-spiritual liberation and wholeness. All that’s required is an honest an open heart and even that’s given. Such hearts are often found in the most unusual of places.

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Spiritual Abuse ~ The Great Escape

Spiritual Abuse ~ The Great Escape

In my previous posts I looked at how we enter into spiritual abuse and how we are locked into it, through a desire matrix and its covering narrative. Today I want to look at how we get out from under such abuse and its controlling mindset.

Let’s face it; it’s not easy to pull off The Great Escape; many of us remain in such abuse environments for decades of our precious space-time existence before finally leaving. What I wish to do is look at the dynamics of our departure and help explain our sudden shift into freedom.

In theory our Will or free Will should help us break away from both the spiritual abuser and his abusive group. In this ideal world we just decide to walk away having coolly examined the facts of our emotional imprisonment. Yet in practice this is far from the case. We are puppets pulled by the subliminal desire strings of the abuser and their metaphysical vision. In such a closeted setting our will appears to miss the point completely, having come into subjugation to the feel good factor of belonging to such a committed group of fellow believers.

Let me suggest that our awakening to the reality of our religious involvement can come in only one of two ways.

1) Expulsion

2) Transpersonal Crisis

Expulsion

The psychic hold that operates through desire transference between Model and Disciple is an extremely strong bond, giving us a sense of social belonging and involvement in a higher purpose. It works well for a time, producing the illusion that we are bang in the center of the Divine Will; a garden of metaphysical pleasure where the religious roses seem to be permanently in bloom. However, as we press into our Model and their infectious desire, a strange metamorphosis begins to take place. Birthed by sincerity and mimetic imitation we gradually become clones of  our chosen Model. Unity within the group is initially strengthened by such a process but eventually our Model begins to take fright, alerted to the fact that they are now surrounded by mirror images of their inner Self.

Such reflex fear leads to a psychic distancing from the Disciples in question. No longer seen as aids to their hidden narcissism, the follower clones are now perceived as rivals for the position of spiritual top dog. In often hasty but subtle defensive measures the Disciple who felt so wanted by their Model now begin to sense an undercurrent of emotional rejection. Believing themselves to have done something to displease the Model the sensitive disciple redoubles their efforts to be like their leader idol. Such a response leads to a further withdrawal of affection or acceptance by the Model who on the surface keeps up the charade of loving all within their care. And so, the spiraling scene is set, that will eventually lead to the expulsion of either Disciple or Model from the group or family in question.

Usually, it is the devoted Disciple who leaves the group, finally realizing that they are no longer wanted. Immediate disillusionment sets in as they gain a glimpse of  what has been going on in the subliminal realm of desire control and conscious group myth. Often anger bursts forth, maintaining the rivalry from afar or from the vantage point of a new group built around a new Model. Such an opportunity for awakening from the religious dream is often delayed as the Disciple replaces one Desire Model for another. Unfortunately history will repeat itself until the Disciple comes to a realization that the religious desire game is the same the world over, morphing itself to the cultural shape of each new group joined.

Yet this psychic expulsion from one’s historical group provides a great opportunity to sit back and examine the process that one has been involved in. Religious ego will want to wage a scapegoating guerrilla war against one’s ex-Model and their flock, but it is a waste of the little psychic energy remaining in one’s emotional tank. A cold turkey phase of withdrawal has kicked in, one which will need much compassion and non judgement for recovery to take place. The battlefield of religious dogma and ideology is not the place we want to find ourselves. Rather we need to step away from all things religious and let reality kick in no matter how painful it is.

Only in facing up to our own woundedness and analyzing our group desire journey can we begin to make sense of it all, a prerequisite to permanent healing and wholeness. So simply put, best not to jump back into a religious pot of metaphysical desire having been thrown out of a spiritually abusive frying pan! Rather be compassionate to your Self and let the dust of God desire settle; avoid religious desire transmitters for a while and enjoy being outside the psycho-spiritual desire field of flock membership. Remember, faith groups do not hold a franchise on the Divine Presence; Spirit Source is all too willing to begin the healing process in the so-called desert of non church attendance!

In my next post I will look at how a Transpersonal Crisis can surprisingly lead to our Great Escape from the abusive world of model driven religion.

Dylan’s Author page ~ https://www.amazon.com/author/dylanmorrison

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Hang-gliding To Heaven

Hang-gliding To Heaven

They’ve arrived. The swallows that is, all the way from South Africa to the supposedly summer climes of rural Lincolnshire, England. As I look out over the nearby lagoon at their dramatic acrobatic flight display I’ve got to admit that I’m just a little jealous.

Why?

Well frankly, I wouldn’t have minded being a bird, permanently in flight, twisting and turning my way through the lower heavens towards my next snack of unsuspecting flies. The slight adjustment of  wing with its resulting daredevil feats seem to shout one thing at me ‘I was born to fly, to be carried on the wind currents of my earth free world’.

Yes, I’ve flown in a plane, both large and small but it’s not the same; pretty boring in fact. Best to fall asleep and wake up at the inevitable bumpy landing. No, I think the only way to get close to the swallow thing is to take up hang gliding, surely one of the craziest but most exhilarating leisure pursuits to have entered into the heart of man. If I wasn’t such a coward I might give it a go. Nothing up there but me and the wide blue heavens. The wind whirling around my little flightsuit as I hang on for grim death – well rather to avoid an extremely grim death.

Just me up there and no-one to dictate to me unless an F-16 flies by with pilot thumbs urgently pointing to earth. What a life! Where will the wind carry me next? The fusion of man will and nature’s element. True Oneness.

OK, so a 56-year-old Irishman like me isn’t really going to get up there. Yet my heart yearns for the freedom of flight. Why? Has something been wired into my Being by a Creator who didn’t give me wings. Is it just a Divine tease or can I fly in some way unknown to conventional wisdom?

I believe so. We were created to fly, not in the space-time material world but in the invisible, but none the less real, realm of Spirit. Spirit, Breath, Wind, all descriptions of that part of the Divine than seems to permeate and overlap this world of things and stuff. An unseen Presence to the unenlightened eye but to one ‘born from above’ a heaven of God-ness granted for us to soar through, like excited angels on their day off.

Many would love to fly but fearful decide to stay rooted on seemingly solid ground looking enviously up at those gliding towards the mid-day Sun. Yeshua promised to fill our beings with Spirit, the same Wind Presence that enabled Him to soar during His earthly sojourn. If ever a man flew high it was Him, close to the Father’s heart, the very reflection of Divine Love. Yet it was Spirit who carried Him there! The same Spirit that’s supposedly fear free and ready to go!

Should I stay on the ground and be a good little religious boy or should I let Him carry me where He wills? Many of us, believing ourselves to be free flying, cheat by taking a flight on Church Airways, where the trusty pastor pilots have had few crashes and a safety record, second to none! How much easier to let the organization take care of my flight desires, by buckling me into my economy pew and reassuring me of my chosen destination. A few inspiring captain updates and Bob’s your uncle – flying Home without risk.

What a travesty of the Spirit filled life. Me, Spirit and God’s high heaven. That sounds more like Yeshua’s take on things. Who knows, we might even bump into the odd frequent flyer up there too. Where two or three are hang gliding there I am in the midst!

Now where did I put that helmet?

Dylan’s author page: http://www.amazon.com/author/dylanmorrison

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