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Progressive Christians and God Talk

But we keep pruning away, and as we prune, domino after domino falls, whether it be connected with revelation, the person and role of Jesus, the meaning of salvation, doctrine, worship, prayer, death and afterlife.

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The Christmas Myth is the Story of the Human Family

From Living Waters: if one is to pass beyond the childish and the external to the core of what Christmas is all about, it’s an essential step. What one has to realize first of all is that the story of the birth of Jesus is a myth. No, not a fairy tale, not a legend, not a piece of fiction to be seen through and dropped at puberty or before, but a spiritual myth-in other words, a truth so vast and so important to our human condition that it can only be told in the most profound language of all, the language of symbolism, allegory and metaphor.

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Authenticity

The way to be all that you can be is to be more yourself. I mean you right now, not after some spiritual makeover; but as you are now, without any pretence and with the layers of conditioned thinking stripped bare. When you hear an inner voice say, “Yes, I am fully myself and authentic in this moment”, then follow that voice. I’m talking about the sort of moments when your skin tingles with the goodness of life and your place in it. sbnr.org

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November 6-8, 2009: TCPC President to Lead Regional Event in Lafayette, CA

Guiding your Church through Change in Our Changing Times:Guiding congregational change requires a healthy sensitivity to the various dimensions of change that are taking place within the life of your community. Fred Plumer, TCPC President, will share a multilayered approach to guiding change within the vibrant life of your congregation that harnesses current cultural trends and the emerging spirit of Progressive Christianity.

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Seeing the Future: Can Religion Evolve and Survive in a Changing World?

Since the fall of Secularization Theory, which claimed that belief in God would slowly recede in the face of science and technology, we still must ask: Is there a future for formal, organized, institutionalized religion as we presently recognize it in rapidly globalizing, postindustrial and postmodern world? Here's what religion will have to do for humans to survive and flourish.

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Trying to String Things Together

According to the best scientists in the world, our universe is composed entirely of vibrating strings of energy. Everything from the smallest measurable particle to the largest star in our universe is made from the same kind of ingredient. Just like the strings of a cello or viola can make a multitude of sounds, quantum strings of energy create a multitude of forms. In ways we cannot understand, at least at this point, all of these strings are inter-related and interdependent. In other words, the great spiritual teachers, including Jesus, were right. We are all one interconnected whole. The universe is like one grand symphony orchestra playing beautiful music. And we are part of that music.

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A Progressive Christian Faces Death

Without an omnipotent God, and without a clear vision of an afterlife, what do I, as a progressive Christian, have for support when death draws near? The answer is simple: I find support in the same realities that have sustained me through life.

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Live Now

Savour the moments. Appreciate the day. We don't know what life will bring us. Sometimes we will be called to courage and endurance. Sometimes we will have to bear our own and others' pain. Being with a loved one through illness and death can be a trying yet profound experience. It is our experience of living that shapes us and calls from us the best that is in us

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Blinded by Belief

Humans are wondrous creatures. Even the very thought that we are conscious at all is enough to baffle the most intelligent of people. Yet it is even more amazing that this wondrous creature we call human, which has been mysteriously endowed with mind and reason, will voluntarily give up these faculties rather than use them. How? They give it up to have a book they can believe in that has all the answers spelled out for them. Then the attribute this book they know was written by humans, to the divine creator.

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Environment in Relgion

written by Vladimir Tomek

Destruction of nature, whether quick and immediate, like the slash-and-burn agricultural practices, or gradual, such as the destruction of the ozone layer, dulls our sensitivity to the presence of God in the natural world.

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The Pagan Christ: Recovering the Lost Light

A provocative argument for a mystical, rather than historical, understanding of Jesus, leading to a radical rebirth of Christianity in our time.

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From the Third Floor of the Gargage- The Story of TheOOZE

I used to be a pastor. More than that, I was a pastor at Mariners Church in Irvine, California-a bona fide mega church with a 25-acre property and a $7.8 million dollar budget. For years, I played by the rules and tried hard not to think too much about the lingering questions in my soul. Doubt, after all, was dangerous. Who knew where it might lead?

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We Cannot Avoid God’s Questions

Since it’s almost entirely poetry and “true myth,” and since we live in one of the most literal-minded cultures of all time, it’s not surĀ­prising that the Bible largely remains a closed book. Those who make the loudest claims for its veracity often see its meaning less clearly than many they judge to be total outsiders. If you treat bibliĀ­cal myths as history, you end up with either distortion or absurdity. Even worse. As Voltaire once said: “Those who believe absurdities end up committing atrocities”

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Living the Questions 2.0

To order with a 10% discount, first visit this page for the TCPC code.  LtQ2 is the completely revised and expanded version of Living the Questions, the popular DVD & internet-based small group exploration of progressive Christianity featuring premier religion voices of our day.

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Looking Around for God

Autry, writer and poet, business executive, and son and grandson of Mississippi Baptist ministers, thinks that the true message of the old spiritual is not just that God has an eye on the sparrow. It’s that God is demonstrating that if these details are worth God's attention, they are certainly worth ours. It may be that we will more readily find God in the details of this world, and of our own lives, than anywhere else. Looking Around for God, Autry’s tenth book, is in many ways his most personal, as he considers his unique life of faith and belief in a God often clouded by church convention. In assembling these personal essays, stories and poems, Autry shares how God has been revealed in many different circumstances of his life, and he offers a few ideas for how the Christian church might better serve in making God’s love and presence manifest in the world.

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Eckhart Tolle and the Christian Tradition

Although Tolle is not a Christian teacher, we must not assume that makes him an anti-Christian teacher. Today we need whatever methods or help we can receive to allow the Christian message to take us to a deeper level of transformation. Our history, and our guidance of Western history, shows this has clearly not been happening on any broad scale. This is an opportunity for us to understand our own message at deeper levels. It would be a shame if we required him to speak our language and vocabulary before we could critically hear what he is saying-that is true and helpful to our own message.

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I Learned About God There

After a couple of weeks of this thrashing, I finally calmed down enough to begin to ask myself what could I learn from this young man. What was missing in our approach to Christian teaching? What were we really teaching our children? What did this young man want that he did not find at our progressive church? What was the pedagogical model we had created, or more importantly what model did we need to create?

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