Tuesday, September 13, 2011

I have still much to say to you

Dr. Steiner said it best when he said:
"By realizing that Christianity will bring forth from its depths an increasing flow of new and more living creations, we enhance its greatness. Those who are always saying: ‘That is not in the Bible, that is not true Christianity and those who maintain that it is, are heretics’, must be reminded that Christ also said: ‘I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now’. He did not say this in order to indicate that He wished to withhold anything from men, but that from epoch to epoch He would bring them new revelations. And this He will do through those who are willing to understand Him. Those who deny that there can be new revelations do not understand the Bible, neither do they understand Christianity. For they have no ears for what is implied in the admonition given by Christ: ‘I have still much to say to you — but prepare yourselves in order that you may be able to bear it and understand it.’
"The true Christians of the future will be those who are willing to hear what the Christians who were contemporaries of Christ were not yet able to bear. Those who allow Christ's Grace to flow into their hearts in ever increasing abundance — they will be the true Christians. The ‘hard of heart’ will resist this Grace, saying: Go back to the Bible, to the literal text of the Bible, for that alone is true. This is a disavowal of the words which in Christianity itself kindle light, words which we will take into our hearts: ‘I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.’ Good it will be for men when they can bear more and more in this sense: for thereby they prepare themselves for the ascent into the spiritual heights. And to these spiritual heights Christianity leads the way."

-Conceptions of Original Sin and Grace

Thanks Be to God, our Heavenly Father, for His Grace, that there is much to learn. May we be open to ever new insights and inspirations!

Is Life Fair?

How do we account for those who have no possibility of hearing the Gospel in this life- those in restrictive countries, those deep in the jungle, the deaf, the mentally challenged, those that die as babies? Have they no chances at all for salvation?

Christians believe that one must accept Christ in this life to be saved, but there are many who never have the opportunity through the circumstances outlined above, and many more. Is this fair? No, of course not.

Neither is it fair the way in which humans find themselves incarnated in this life. Some are born with silver spoons in their mouths, some in abject poverty, some have all opportunity, others seem to try and fail, some have congenital weaknesses, missing limbs, stupidity; others have rude good health and are wonderfully "gifted". There is inequality everywhere in this life. Is life fair? Why some with gifts and others short-changed?

Life doesn't appear to be fair at all, but our God is a God of Justice and Love- isn't there a disparity here? No, not if we understand the truth of reincarnation. Everything falls into place when we understand rebirth and karma.

Reincarnation & the Gospels

THE old Augustinian model of predestination has long had its day. As an explanation of the different circumstances human beings find themselves in at birth, it is totally haphazard and at odds with a God of Justice and Love.
"Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect." Matthew 5:48
Perfection isn't won in a day or even three score and ten years.

Here are some notes from William Judge on the matter:
"In the first place, it must be remembered that the writers of the biblical books were Jews with few exceptions, and that the founder of Christianity - Jesus - was himself a Jew...

"........The Jews then most undoubtedly believed in reincarnation. It was a commonly accepted doctrine as it is now in Hindustan, and Jesus must have been acquainted with it. This we must believe on two grounds: first, that he is claimed by the Christian to be the Son of God and full of all knowledge; and second, that he had received an education which permitted him to dispute with the doctors of divinity. The theory of reincarnation was very old at the time, and the Old Testament books show this to be so.

"Elias and many other famous men were to actually return, and all the people were from time to time expecting them. Adam was held to have reincarnated to carry on the work he began so badly, and Seth, Moses, and others were reincarnated as different great persons of subsequent epochs. ....

If readers will consult any well educated Jew who is not "reformed," they will gain much information on this national doctrine.

".........When there was brought into the presence of Jesus a man who was born blind, the disciples naturally wondered why he had thus been punished by the Almighty, and asked Jesus whether the man was thus born blind for some sin he had committed, or one done by his parents. The question was put by them with the doctrine of reincarnation fully accepted, for it is obvious the man must have lived before, in their estimation, in order to have done sin for which he was then punished. Now if the doctrine was wrong and pernicious, as the church has declared it to be by anathematizing it, Jesus must have known it to be wrong, and then was the time for him to deny the whole theory and explode it, as well as definitely putting his seal of condemnation upon it for all time. Yet he did not do so; he waived it then and said the blindness was for other reasons in that case. It was not a denial of it.

"But again when John the Baptist, who had, so to say, ordained Jesus to his ministry, was killed by the ruler of the country, the news was brought to Jesus, and he then distinctly affirmed the doctrine of reincarnation. Hence his waiving the matter in the case of the blind man is shown to have been no refusal to credit the theory. Jesus affirmed the doctrine, and also affirmed the old ideas in relation to the return to earth of the prophets by saying that the ruler had killed John not knowing that he, John, was Elias "who was for to come."

"On another occasion the same subject arose between Jesus and the disciples when they were talking about the coming of a messenger before Jesus himself. The disciples did not understand, and said that Elias was to come first as the messenger, and Jesus distinctly replied that Elias had come already in the person called John the Baptist. This time, if any, was the time for Jesus to condemn the doctrine, but, on the contrary, he boldly asserts it and teaches it, or rather shows its application to certain individuals, as was most interesting and instructive for the disciples who had not enough insight to be able to tell who any man was in his real immortal nature. But Jesus, being a seer, could look into the past and tell them just what historical character any one had been. And so he gave them details about John, and we must suppose more particulars were gone into than have come down to us in the writings naturally incomplete and confessed to be but a partial narrative of the doings and sayings of Jesus.

"........John the Revealer believed it of course, and so in his book we find the verse saying that the voice of the Almighty declared that the man who overcame should "go out no more" from heaven. This is mere rhetoric if reincarnation be denied; "

"St. Paul also gives the theory of reincarnation in his epistles where he refers to the cases of Jacob and Esau, saying that the Lord loved the one and hated the other before they were born. It is obvious that the Lord cannot love or hate a non-existing thing, and that this means that Jacob and Esau had been in their former lives respectively good and bad and therefore the Lord- or Karma loved the one and hated the other before their birth as the men known as Jacob and Esau. And Paul was here speaking of the same event that the older prophet Malachi spoke of in strict adherence to the prevalent idea. Following Paul and the disciples came the early fathers of the church, and many of them taught the same. Origen was the greatest of them. He gave the doctrine specifically, and it was because of the influence of his ideas that the Council of Constantinople 500 years [553] after Jesus, saw fit to condemn the whole thing as pernicious."

Monday, September 05, 2011

Original Sin & Grace

Karma is literally the protector of our being- as you sow, so shall you reap.

Are the conceptions of  Original Sin and Grace contradictory to Karma? This lecture may be helpful:

"Therefore to speak of the existence of Original Sin and of Grace does not denote misunderstanding of the idea of karma. For in speaking of the idea of karma we are speaking of the reincarnation of the ego in the different earth-lives. Karma is inconceivable without the presence of the ego: Original Sin and Grace, impulses which lie below the surface of karma, [are] in the astral body. We can say with truth that human karma was first brought about because man had burdened himself with Original Sin. Karma flows through the incarnations and before and after there are happenings which introduce and subsequently expurgate it. Before karma, Original Sin; and after, the victory of the Christ Impulse, the fullness of Grace."
-Rudolf Steiner