An Easter Acclamation, Cosmic and Evolutionary

After searching for an opening Easter Acclamation that is progressive and cosmic in nature, and finding nothing that went where I’d like to take the congregation, I decided I’d just have to write one.

This acclamation/invocation draws on themes found in the Gospel of Thomas, Meister Eckhart, Hildegard von Bingen, Teilhard de Chardin, and Thomas Berry. I also hope is has some of the poetic flare of that great earth mystic, Saint John (Muir) of the Mountains.

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Becoming Part of The Teleological Argument

Occasionally I meet someone and they say to me; I am an Atheist. I think to myself:

What exactly do you mean by that? How can you be so sure of what you disbelieve? You my friend need a better word and a better “A -” with more definition. In today’s quantum world such a statement as yours is “passé.” Theism, Atheism and Deism are word descriptions from the prescientific past.

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A Joyful Path, Year One, Lesson 6: Remembering God’s Presence

Nathan Leaves Home

Remembering that God is within us and a part of everything that ever was and ever will be is one of the most important things we can do.

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A Joyful Path, Year One, Lesson 27: Forgiving and Healing

There is abundant love within each of us, but even when we try to act as messengers of love in the world, we often mess up the message. Like the old game of telephone, where a message is passed along and completely mixed up by the time it reaches the end of the line, we mix up divine love with our own desires, confusions, and misunderstandings and end up hurting one another. Then we must forgive.
Getting children to say the words, “I forgive you,” is not enough. True forgiveness is inward and will actually remove the hurts we have from our hearts, like pulling weeds in a beautiful garden. Forgiving is not simply a gift we give someone who has wronged us, either; it is a step in our own spiritual growth that will enable our hearts to blossom as intended.

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Worship Materials: Celebrating the Cosmic Processes

From the Celebrating Mystery collection

“I GREET THAT OF THE COSMOS WITHIN YOU”

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Mindful Christianity: On Being Jesus’ Twin

This is an excerpt from a book Jim Burklo is writing this summer: MINDFUL CHRISTIANITY. The research he’s doing for this project has taken him deep into the history of Christian spirituality. According to Jim: “The more I learn, the more I have to learn!”

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Conscience and Consciousness

A Spiritual Path for Personal Transformation

An aging Vietnam vet suffering from PTSD returns to Da Nang after 50 years in order to try to do something for those still afflicted generations later by the lingering toxic affects of Agent Orange. His nagging conscience leads to a redemptive act of self-healing and a common good.

Spirituality is often an amorphous and bandied about term that too often connotes the merely religious type, as somehow distinct from those who are not. Instead, I appreciate something as equally shared as it is often neglected, namely the human conscience and our sometimes-belated conscious awareness of it.

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Our Nag Hammadi Predicament

How can we achieve the sense of cosmic multidimensionality expressed in the Gospel of Thomas found at Nag Hammadi in 1945? For each of us in our 21st century world this is our predicament. What is expressed …

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A New Approach to Reading and Interpreting the New Testament

  A famous poet, William Wordsworth defined poetry as “emotion recollected in tranquility.” I wonder if it might be productive to apply that notion to our interpretation of the New Testament. This approach, this perhaps at-first-alarming approach, …

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Je Suis Jésus

Satire and Blasphemy in the Teachings of a Galilean Sage

Radical religious extremists with a distorted view of Islam commit horrific acts of terror, executing the staff of a small satirical French publication. The satirists had dared to depict the Prophet Mohammed in cartoon caricature; all the while lampooning those misbegotten adherents who in turn regard such irreverent acts as blasphemous.

The Western world reacts with outrage and defiance to such an affront. World leaders join a million person protest and unity march through the streets of Paris, chanting “Je Suis Charlie,” in defense of freedom of speech, and on behalf of the publication’s name.

While a clear distinction might be drawn between the use of words and the vehement reactions they may incite, more profound underlying questions remain. While anti-blasphemy laws are common in Muslim countries, countless other “secular” countries have laws against the defamation of religion, as well. Once the dust settles and more thoughtful discussion ensues, one might ask what constitutes the differences between hate speech and freedom of expression?

This commentary consider s esus’ use of what was deemed blasphemous satire, it’s intended purpose, and well-known consequences.

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An Interview with Elaine Pagels

Westar

In this one-on-one interview, bestselling author and MacArthur Prize recipient Elaine Pagels tells a wide-ranging story. She explains how Billy Graham’s preaching sparked her interest in religion, and talks of her early encounters with Gnostic texts and with Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead. Through the interconnections between the personal and professional, Pagels addresses the problem of how we are to define Christianity meaningfully in ancient and modern times.

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The Case for a New Christianity

This paper addresses recent discoveries of previously unknown Christian scriptures which predate the orthodox canonical gospels of Mathew, Mark, Luke and John. Surprisingly, these earlier writings reveal a totally different kind of Christianity – one which could very well speak to the needs of the lost Christians of today.

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