As I've stated today in the general area of this board I have alot of questions and issues. Here is a very basic question ogf theology that I would like to put out there.
I believe in Christ and I follow his teachings in the tradition of the Catholic Church. However, I believe that salvation is not exclusive to a particular belief system. This is one of the main bones I have to pick with mainstream Christian thought.
Can some people please give me some input on this topic so I can get a perspective of where I stand as opposed to others here.
We have kicked that around on several threads. Our consensus would seem very similar to yours. Hope you feel welcome, and even if you don't, we can have
a snot slinging knock-down-drag-out over any number of burning issues. caritas, -mm <*))))><
As MM states, there are a number of threads here at Shalom that have addressed this issue from various sides.
You might find a kind of inverse relationship between your view that all paths are essentially the same and the degree of resistance among Catholics to an invitation for group prayer, as I've mentioned in response to your first post. This view you seem to have may also color your perception re: how spiritually inclined others in the church are.
I have a Buddhist and Hindu background, but don't find their saints and teachings to have the power and grace that Christ does, which doesn't disparage them in my mind, but is simply part of the order of things in my own experience. For instance, for many years I thought kundalini and the Holy Spirit were the same thing, which Buddhists, Hindus and perhaps Sufis will tell you is the case. Nothing could be further from the truth as I understand and experience it now. You'll find much good info. on that particular issue here at Shalom as well.
One other note:
To say that Jesus Christ was, and is, true God and true man, and unique in this way, doesn't mean that grace is witheld from other religious traditions, but that Christ's cosmic presence allows us access to Him from many angles, although not as directly as through His body's sacraments, His body being the Eucharistic church. So whereas one will find Hindus and Sufis saying that Christ is acceptable to them, orthodox Christians do view those other saints as merely human, however wise they may be.
See http://www.megspace.com/religi...f/aninclusivist.html for the three positions re. salvation and other religions.
Catholicism is pretty much in the Inclusivist group. Do a search on this site for "implcit faith" and you'll find quite a few discussions on this topic.
There inevitably comes a time when evil, the devil and matter fail as an answer to life�s problems. It seems you already know this and intuitively know that God is one and that we are all united in His pure consciousness; therefore, no one is left out of heaven, and everyone possess the inherent ability to discover God and heaven. No one needs to remain in evil and darkness, if one desires to find light and live with God. It doesn't matter what path one takes when everything is seen as God, then there is nothing evil that can oppose God or divine consciousness and all paths lead to Him. The devil cannot squelch, repeal or conceal God's light just like we cannot stop the sun from rising; nothing has the power to stop God in the individual mind so we just need to listen to God's inner voice and follow the path that he has chosen for us.
It doesn't matter what path one takes when everything is seen as God, then there is nothing evil that can oppose God or divine consciousness and all paths lead to Him.
That's a good example of the "Pluralist" viewpoint, stated with great dogmatic certainty.
Yes,the words happily sung by the Cantor are:
All will come to worship you
They will bless your holy name
And tell your righteousness in far-off places.
Nations who do not know you will come to seek you
The end of the earth will praise you.
They will say "great is YWHW"
Offer you their sacrifices
Abandon their idols and turn over their statues
And come as one to worship you.
Bless you soma. My heart is full and overflows with further praises to The Holy One.
"Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD from the heavens; praise Him in the heights! Praise Him, all His angels; praise Him, all His hosts! Praise Him, sun and moon; Praise Him, all stars of light! Praise Him, highest heavens, and the waters that are above the heavens!
"Let them praise the name of the Lord, for He commanded and they were created."
We love you Father of us all.
Freebird you sing the song of acceptance that there is one God and that He created all things. Thank you that is a conceptual truth that frees the mind to think of God all the time. You must radiate joy to all around you. Your song of praise relaxes the emotions so we can praise everything as good because it came from God.
Absolutely, we should think of God at all times, love and adore Him singing psalms and praises to His Holy Name. For He is worthy of all our love.
soma, the last sentence in your post I desire to clarify a bit with my beliefs re: Your song of praise relaxes the emotions so we can praise everything as good because it came from God. Here we must make a definite distinction. God has given humanity a free will and many children are walking in their own ways and desires being rebellious to the divine laws of righteousness which God gave to us as a guide in our moral and upright life with Him in His goodness and love for us. When we lead our lives selfishly in disobedience, there is no goodness in us, and we are not praising Him. When we give our will to God and say: Thy Will be done, we are living in righteousness and love for Our Creator and His goodness shines through us filling us with His Light and His Love.
Doing God's Will is good and we sing abundant praises in honor to Him. Following after the earthly carnal mind and froward teachings of this world does not offer the worthy praises to God.
Let us all be worthy to sing the praises to Our Beloved Lord, by our conduct and love for one another. Love to you soma
I agree when we lead our lives with selfishness and disobedience from God's pure consciousness we are hurting ourselves, are not relaxed, uptight and restless. May we all raise our voices and sing in harmony.
You are a Free........Bird.
. . . disobedience from God's pure consciousness . . .
But whatever does that mean? You seem to equate pure consciousness with God. Why?
God is beyond our mind. Why not use words that are used everyday to describe the undescribable? I don't think we should limit the words we use to talk about God. It is good to think and talk about God and we should encourage it.
Some of what you write doesn't connect well with the Christian mystical tradition, soma. I'm all for using a variety of words and concepts with regard to God, but I also think divine revelation ought to play a role in how Christians do this. See the thread "On Being a Christian" in the Morality and Theology forum for some recent reflection I've shared on this.
God as "pure consciousness." How would you distinguish that from the states of pure consciousness that the human spirit is capable of realizing?
God as "pure consciousness." How would you distinguish that from the states of pure consciousness that the human spirit is capable of realizing? Phil's question is very well put.
soma, Eastern religions equate God with an ocean of pure consciousness and they believe that once their human spirit has achieved this pure consciousness state, they liken themselves to be a drop of God's pure consciousness, being equal with God, merging into God's ocean of said pure consciousness.
Is this how you see God as just an ocean of pure consciousness that you yourself merge with in spirit having attained the pure consciousness, which you equate as being equal to God's pure consciousness state?.
A Buddhist friend also equates God as this giant being covering the whole earth and us being the cells of this giant's body.
As Christians we are one with God and also have a seperate being as Christ tells us that we shall see Him as He is because we shall be like Him. He tells us further to come and share the throne and the inheritence with Him. We are beloved children of Father God and when we see Christ as He is, He will be our Elder Brother, yet He always retains His Divinity, as The Beloved Son of the Father God as One and One with The Holy Spirit.
Together we sing praises to God, Father of us all. Bless you soma.
Freebird, soma, and others. See this new thread on God and pure consciousness. It's a timely topic in many ways, and I've opened the new discussion thread so it wouldn't get lost in this topic.
We as Christians believe in one God who created a vast universe, which is beyond our minds, but also personal enough to care for each of us. Yet, you want us to accept the idea that when we meditate or reach different states of consciousness that we should think as though God does not exist there. God is in those states guiding us also. Talking about God's pure consciousness shows that we are separated in the fact that our consciousness is not pure and I wrpte God's in the possessive case.
I don't think as Christians we should ignore what is buried deep in our consciousness, and searching our consiousness in no way takes away from our Christian belief in a personal God.
"For behold, the kingdom of God is within you."
That's the last time you pull a straw man on me, soma.
Whew! Good riddance.
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