The Truth About Health, Nutrition, Big Pharma, Wellness, NDE, Spirituality

Roberta Grimes

I hear from many disaffected Christians. Some pour out their hearts to me, telling me they have been devout and happy in the religion for their entire lives until whatever age they are right now – usually they are in their fifties or sixties – but of late, they have become disillusioned. There are too many questions that lack good answers, too much that troubles them about Christian beliefs, and they simply no longer feel comfortable about being part of any Christian denomination. Many seem to see the way I have freed myself as their welcome inspiration to make the leap themselves. Some will ask me questions that suggest they are still nervous about suffering some level of divine retribution if they actually leave the religion; but most seem to think I can address their worries. After all, I successful broke away, and look how happy I am now! How close to Jesus! How spiritually fed and joyful and fulfilled I seem to be!   

And I am indeed joyful. But it hasn’t been easy. My leaving traditional Christianity altogether was a move that I resisted for as long as I could, until in the end I really had no choice. And leaving Christianity has brought me so much closer to God in a truth-based reality that at last makes perfect sense! So I have no regrets about leaving Christianity. But I mourn the religion I have lost. I’ve made peace with my grief over the past two decades, much as you would make peace with the death of anyone very close to you. But still, at this time every year just the thought of what I have given up for Jesus feels like a small cloud of sadness in my springtime sky. Despite everything, I still love my religion!

I know from emails that this pining for Christianity after leaving it happens to others, too; and since that is true, it is past time for us to talk about what for many years felt to me like a personal failing. I converted to Catholicism at marriage, and then I came to love it so much that I held onto it long after I should have let it go. I love Jesus with everything in me! And the more I have studied His life and His words, the more convinced I have become that the religion has nothing to do with Jesus. In fact, it is impossible to follow the Lord if you let the religion remain between you.

But Christianity still displays such a comforting face! Despite all that is wrong with that old-time religion, if you ever have been at all devout you will find that the religion you abandon for Jesus is going to have its roots in your deepest heart. The longer you follow the Way of Jesus, the more He will reinforce your choice; but still, and perhaps forevermore, Christmas and Easter can make you ache for your old-time Christian life. And for the joy of singing Christmas carols! For candle-lit Christmas Eve services that always fill your heart with joy! For glorious sunrise services at dawn on every Easter morning, when you discover once again that empty tomb!

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Christianity itself is the central obstacle to the advancement of Jesus in the modern world. Jesus is an extraordinary historical figure! His is the only documented instance where an aspect of the genuine Godhead lived among us as a human being in order to better understand what it is to experience human life so He could teach us more clearly how to use our lives to achieve greater spiritual growth. The more we learn about the life of Jesus, the more gigantic that life becomes! God chose to be born as a human being. God lived among people as one of us. There never has happened, before or since, an event so extraordinary, so flat-out cosmic.

Please pause now and really think about this. As you think, you will find that worlds of amazing and empowering information about what God really is, what you and I are, and the depth and height of God’s perfect love will dawn in you, and will uplift and delight you. We aren’t talking about just some religious ideas! Jesus is a genuine historical figure. There is in fact a Collective of Perfected Beings that continuously manifests what we perceive as reality. And Jesus is of the highest aspect of that Godhead. All of this is TRUE. God chose to be born on earth out of love for each of us individually. You can sit like the Buddha in lotus position and contemplate this simple set of facts, and your heart will swell with joy. The name of Jesus has been widely known for almost two thousand years, but it is only now that we understand enough of what actually is going on to be able to start to appreciate what a truly gigantic figure He is!

But even to this day, very few people have any awareness of the genuine Jesus. He is silenced and belittled by the very people who claim to most revere Him. The Christian religion doesn’t teach what Jesus taught, except in vague and general terms; but instead, it teaches a barbaric doctrine that is the opposite of what Jesus taught, and also the opposite of everything that we now know about the Godhead. That brutal doctrine is the reason why our churches are filled with instruments of torture, why so many Christians are afraid of death, and why the most devout Christians so often seem to be truly unpleasant people, insular and judgmental of others. As Mahatma Gandhi said, “I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.”

Christian scholars refer to that despicable core Christian doctrine as “substitutionary atonement.” It is the primary teaching of the Christian religion, this notion that Jesus came to sacrifice Himself to God on a cross as a substitute for us, and His sacrifice means that if we are Christians we can escape God’s judgment and condemnation. Without the Lord’s sacrificial death, God would not forgive us even for Adam’s sin, and God certainly wouldn’t forgive us for our own sins. Incredibly, that barbaric set of beliefs is the core and heart of the religion that actually was named for Jesus! He told us two thousand years ago that the genuine God is perfect love, but even today the Christian God continues to demand that we claim participation in the torture and murder of God’s own Son or God will send us straight to hell. Please pause now and think about this. Was there ever a more petty, sadistic, and venal human-made idea than that? Was there ever any idea that more completely went against the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ than the notion that God needs to see Him murdered before God can forgive us for being human?

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Christianity is not based in the teachings of Jesus, and in fact much of modern Christianity is antithetical to the teachings of Jesus. It will therefore be impossible for us to tinker around the edge of Christianity, soften it here and firm it up there, perhaps remove some later accretions, and thereby transform it into the spiritual movement Jesus came to earth to begin. If we really intend to follow Jesus, our only option is to rescue the Lord and His Word from the false religion that has prevented His teachings from uplifting the world, and let that religion just fade away.

The way Christianity treats the Son of God like nothing more than a prop is appalling. When the Catholic church has had continuous custody of the Gospels for two thousand years, when the first Biblical translation into English dates back to the sixteenth century, and when to date the Bible has been translated into 698 different languages, how is it possible that literally no prominent modern Christian denomination gives the Lord’s teachings as they are set forth in the canonical Gospels anything more than lip-service?

We have talked here repeatedly about the differences between the Gospels and Christianity. We have demonstrated Christianity’s troubling history, shown how individual Christian teachings are bogus, and also spent time carefully reading the Gospels in modern English as we strive to ever better understand the genuine meaning and message of Jesus. But it occurs to me now that in giving you a constant fire hose of information, I really am not serving you well. I realized during the Christmas season that what you need in order for you to see how hopeless it is for us to try to fix modern-day Christianity is the clarity of pinning down the anti-Jesus teaching that is Christianity’s core message.

Jesus tells us in the Gospels that in coming to us two thousand years ago He had at least five goals in mind:

  • He Came to Abolish Our Need for Religions
  • He Came to Teach Us to be Seekers
  • He Came to Teach Us How to Relate to God on Our Own
  • He Came to Teach us How to Grow Spiritually
  • He Came to Bring the Kingdom of God on Earth

And Jesus had a sixth purpose, too, which seems more subtle to readers of the Gospels because as they are translated into modern English this core purpose is never bluntly stated. But this purpose is central to all the others! Unless we include it, we make our actually following the teachings of Jesus much more difficult:

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There are more than forty thousand versions of Christianity worldwide.  Many are the size of a single building, but a few are gigantic: the Catholic Church has 1.2 billion members, and the United Methodist Church alone has more than twelve million members worldwide. Most of the differences among denominations are minor, but they are enough to convince many devout Christians that hell yawns before many other devout Christians. And this awful fracturing continues apace! A decade ago there were about ten thousand versions of Christianity. Who can guess how many more there will be in another ten years’ time?

This endless splitting-apart of Christians over doctrinal disagreements has a long historyAmong the earliest followers of the Lord’s Way, differences of opinion about even core details were peacefully allowed, so long as the Lord’s teachings were followed. But then came the Council of Nicaea in 325, and six more councils over half a millennium, all of which codified the Lord’s Way into just one set of acceptable beliefs. This newly unified Christian religion then abolished all of what it considered to be heretical ideas, and often in horrific ways.

The most recent major rift in what Christians still call the Body of Christ occurred early in 2019. The United Methodist Church is the largest mainline protestant denomination in the United States, and it has fallen into bitter disunion over the issue of homosexuality. At a meeting meant to heal the rift, those who wanted to allow the ordination of homosexual clergy and the legalization of homosexual marriage were voted down, so now a split seems inevitable. It was delegates from developing countries who killed the idea of accepting homosexuals. Jerry Kulah, the head of the UMC Africa Initiative, was delighted to say, “I’m happy to go back to old ladies and old men in villages who received the Bible from missionaries and let them know that the Bible hasn’t changed.”

“The Bible hasn’t changed.” Once again, the Old Testament was used to beat down the Lord’s central message that God’s Law is love. To this day, devotion to the Old Testament is allowed to further split the Body of Christ, even though Jesus Himself freed us to throw the Old Testament out the window! When asked what was the greatest commandment, Jesus said, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the great and foremost commandment.  The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets” (MT 22:37-40).

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Nearly all the people now living who profess to love and follow Jesus have no awareness of who He is and why He chose to be born on earth. That fact is heartbreaking, when the truth about Jesus and His mission is so glorious! The only evidence we have now of the Lord and His mission is His genuine words as they are given in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, the four books of the Bible which are commonly referred to as the Gospels. And to be frank, I am a skeptic when it comes to strictly believing the words of someone who lived two thousand years ago and whose words were passed down orally for two generations after His death, then translated through two more very different languages before you and I first got to read them! But the greatest discovery of my life has been the fact that those that we used to think were dead uniformly confirm that the Gospel teachings of Jesus are the most essential core human truths of all.

I have shared with you what Jesus actually tells us in the Gospels, and how it is that Christianity has managed to get the Lord’s mission and message so wrongFor its first few centuries, Christianity was a movement based in the teachings of Jesus, and there were many variations on those teachings that were accepted under that movement’s broad tent. Ideas that are central to Christianity now were very much minority views for the first five centuries after He died! For example, more than six million Christian burials were conducted in the Roman catacombs up until the early fifth century C.E.; and in all that time, according to the nineteenth-century scholar John Ruskin, there is “Not a cross as a symbol in the CatacombsThe earliest Latin cross is on the tomb of the Empress Galla Placidia, 451 AD. No picture of the crucifixion until the Ninth Century, nor any portable crucifix until long after. To the early Christians Christ was living, the one agonized hour was lost in the thought of his glory and triumph. The fall of theology and Christian thought dates from the error of dwelling upon his death instead of his life.”

Jesus tells us in the Gospels that His teachings were meant to begin the arrival of the kingdom of God on earth. The fact that instead Christianity soon became a deeply fear-based religion is due to the fact that Roman Emperors adopted the Christian movement and imposed upon it their own orthodoxies to help them better control the faithful. Over the next millennium, the Roman Church stamped out more than three dozen differing interpretations of the Lord’s Gospel words at a cost of more than twenty-five million mostly brutal deathsEven worse from the long perspective of history, the religion they erected in the name of Jesus has almost nothing to do with Jesus.

Let’s look briefly at a few of the false Christian teachings that don’t have roots in the Gospels, and in fact are entirely untrue according to those that we used to think were dead:

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Nearly all the people who ask me questions are past the age of fifty. They are trying to deepen their spiritual life, and they aren’t finding ways to do that in their lifelong Christian beliefs and practices. Often they have been seeking for years, trying out different spiritual options like meditation, yoga, New Age, and various Eastern religions, but never feeling satisfied. By the time they reach out to me, many of these people are frustrated and even angry. Some have come to think that good answers to their spiritual questions will never be found.

Fortunately, I think the spiritual questions that are being asked by cradle Christians have satisfying answers, but that is primarily because they have a grounding in traditional Christianity. As is true of a bush that has become overgrown, if we can prune away the misshapen branches that are based in fear and negativity, we often can help them get back to their childhood Gospel roots. But this sort of fix will not be possible for the so-called Millennials, close to half of whom claim to have no religious affiliation. And for Generation Z, those born between 1995 and 2015, present trends suggest that when they are adults few of them will have any spiritual roots at all.

Western Europe is at least a generation ahead of the United States in losing its Christian grounding. The ultimate result of this spiritual falling-away in Europe cannot yet be assessed, but even in the United States we are seeing some pretty appalling results as the religiously affiliated percentage of this nation continues to decline toward 50%. Since Christianity is based in fear, this result seems to be counterintuitive; but fear and negativity are rising here exponentially! Whether it is political warfare, violent entertainments, or panic that every weather event will soon make this planet uninhabitable: the fact is that the United States has become dramatically more fearful and angry. It is time to step back a bit from the fray and try to understand what has gone so wrong and how we might begin to repair it.

We talked here a couple of weeks ago about the reasons that most lapsed Christians give for outright leaving the faith:

  • They can no longer believe many of Christianity’s core teachings.
  • They love the Jesus they first met as children, but they don’t find Him in the pews as adults.
  • They find many of the Christian faithful to be cliquish, judgmental, and “un-Christian.”
  • They find in modern Christianity only rules and dogmas, not spiritual food.

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Anatomically modern humans have existed for barely two hundred thousand years. For nearly all that time, we had no more awareness of why we are here or what is going on than your cat has as it purrs in your lap, so the fact that in just the past two decades our knowledge of how reality works has advanced so much is tremendous news! We now know that our species is a vehicle by means of which the vast, eternal Mind that continuously manifests this universe can grow spiritually by experiencing negativity. And with that insight, we can look back at the long sweep of human history and marvel at what we have accomplished despite the fact that we have always been clueless.

Technologically and culturally, we have advanced by light-years! But we have made almost no spiritual progress. We each have struggled toward learning to choose love over fear and anger, feeling drawn toward love but as oblivious about the reason why as are the bugs that blindly mob your back-porch light. We have advanced in stumbles through many earth-lifetimes until eventually we achieved enough spiritual growth to complete our development in what we call the afterlife. Then, after eons, those who were most successful at elevating their spiritual vibrations grew to become the perfected beings who oversee our spiritual development today.

This has been how the process of spiritual growth has worked for all of human history. Whether our technology under development was the Clovis Point or nuclear fusion; whether culturally we were creating the first alphabet or the U.S. Constitution; and whether our view of God was the Canaanites’ Moloch, the Hebrews’ Yahweh, or the modern Christian God, there was little awareness of our spiritual nature in anything that human beings ever did.

Now all of that is changing. Fast! For the first time in two hundred thousand years, living people are being given insights sufficient to help us achieve whole leaps of amazing understanding. We are being given to know not only what we are and why we are here, but also what and where “here” is; we are being handed depths and insights that the prophets of yore could only glimpse. We are told that we are being helped to achieve this sudden elevation in our awareness because our assistance is needed now to raise the spiritual vibrations of a planet that has sunk so deep into negativity that its very survival is at stake.

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I have been hearing of late from people who wonder how we can distinguish what Jesus likely said from the corruptions of His words that followed His death. Then last week we performed a bit of analysis on something I had thought He likely hadn’t said, but now it seems that He probably did say it. And that prompted even more people to ask how I ever was able to figure that out! I want to empower you as much as I can, so I am happy to share with you how I continue to seek and to find an ever better understanding of the genuine Jesus.

First, of course, I should acknowledge that I have spent considerable time in self-education:

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One of the loveliest things about humankind is our zesty adaptability, our vast creative optimism that can make crises into opportunities. A recent Seek Reality guest is a very successful woman who told us that a dozen years ago her life had seemed to be over. She had been unemployed, in a failed marriage, plagued by health problems, financially bereft, and altogether without hope. To see her now, it is impossible to imagine that she ever has been less than a star! And there are so many stories like hers. As I think back, I realize that lots of our most inspiring Seek Reality guests have shared with us tales of dead-ended lives upon which the guests had built great successes that would not have been possible if some tragedy or other hadn’t cleared their former lives away.

The poem that begins and ends this post has no attribution because it is one of several that apparently I wrote in my teens. By now, I don’t recall most of them. But I loved this one, especially the counter-intuitive wisdom of “salutary calamities” and “the reckless despair of misfortune.” I still recall it more than fifty years later. Of course, no teenager has the depth of understanding nor the breadth of experience to write something like this! I had of late become convinced that I am misremembering having written it. I assumed that instead I must have read it somewhere, but I did a search and found nothing. The only other poem from that time that I recall is even more sophisticated than this one, so I realize that if in fact I wrote them, all those poems must have been channeled. Thomas was gearing me up to undertake the future that he and I had planned.

Covid-19 could be a nothing-burger, or it could be a long-term plague. It still is impossible to know. We do know, however, that the massive worldwide effort being made to address the illness is forcing us out of our established ruts. Just as efficiently as would a serious war or a good-sized meteor hitting the earth, measures being taken to deal with the pandemic are disrupting Western civilization. So now we are living through a hinge in history. A new and much better modern world is seeking to be born from the ashes of the industrial age that is dying now before our eyes. The process of this death and rebirth is likely to vary by country, but here are eight quick U.S. examples of the creative destruction that is now underway:

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If people were nothing more than different aspects of one group consciousness, then for a significant number of us to work at raising our consciousness vibrations would be pretty much all it would take for us to start to bring the kingdom of God on earthBut in fact, each of us is a complex individual who is living as a limited aspect of a much greater eternal Mind, and we are strongly influenced by the restrictions of these material bodies. While we are on earth, we have a lot going on! That being the case, there are concepts beyond the overarching goals of gratitudeforgiveness, and love that we will need to better understand if we hope to make optimum spiritual progress in this lifetime, and if we ever hope to much improve the world. This is the first of four reflections on topics that are likely at first to seem less than crucial. Please bear with me on this. We have a world to save!

We all think we know what love is. We love our life-partners. Our children. Our friends. Our pets. We imagine that just spreading those happy feelings to others beyond our personal circle must be what Jesus means when He tells us we must love our neighbors as ourselves (MT 19:19). We assume that once we have sufficiently raised our personal consciousness vibrations, we will just naturally love everyone! Sadly, though, it is not that simple.

What we refer to as love is actually many different warm emotions. In English, and also in the Aramaic that Jesus spoke, there is just one word for love; but ancient Greek is the language into which the words of Jesus were first translated, and there we find six handy words for love:

  • Philautia means love for oneself.
  • Pragma means longstanding love.
  • Eros means sexual or romantic love.
  • Philia means deep and close friendship.
  • Ludus means light and playful affinity.
  • Agape means genuine universal love.

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Every human-made god has human flaws, and none of them has been very believable. Primitive people who had no way to understand reality would believe anything! But as we have become more sophisticated, we gradually have begun to find that reality can indeed be puzzled out. It makes sense. And Moloch, wearing cattle-horns and with a fire in his belly to burn up babies, frankly doesn’t make any sense. A Christian God with a long white beard who sits on a judgment-throne is also unbelievable. It is no wonder that traditional religions are losing their last hold on our minds.

Our felt need to find and worship gods is so ancient and so persistent that it is one of the characteristics that define humanity. And as Moloch would tell you, where there’s smoke, there’s fire! So it is no surprise that a genuine Godhead gradually is being revealed to us that makes sense and is consistent with the rest of reality. And wonderfully, God turns out to be both infinite power and perfect love. Our minds had for so long been obsessed with fearing our judgmental human-made gods that the Godhead knew that in the fullness of our eventually beginning to understand reality we would need a divine reset. Those old gods would have to be cleared away, and the Godhead would need to reveal Itself sufficiently for us to come to know and love our true Creator God.

And so it was that two thousand years ago a Member of the highest aspect of the Godhead actually was born as God on earth. We cannot know why at that particular moment in earth-time God chose to enter the human world, nor why the message that God revealed was soon thereafter imprisoned inside a religion that for the next two thousand years insisted that the Son of God had been born just so He could die as a sacrifice. The notion that a loving God could want to watch His Only Son being murdered is yet another awful human-made idea about a fallible human-like god. But at last, in this new century we have built a reasonable understanding of the reality that we think we see around us. We also have discovered and begun to understand the greater reality of which this material universe is a tiny part. And, wonderfully, we have begun to learn enough about the genuine Godhead that continuously manifests this universe that we can at last put every false god aside!

And we have been amazed to learn that Jesus is a whole lot more important than anything Christians have imagined Him to be. Jesus, born two thousand years ago, was actually born as God on earth! It may have happened only once, but in fact it did happen. There was a time when God briefly walked among us.

Perhaps a dozen Old Testament passages have been cited as predictions of the birth of Jesus. To be frank, most are vague and dubious. But one of them is amazingly a genuine prediction of the coming of Jesus and of what He will accomplish, and it was delivered almost a thousand years before the Lord was born. Jesse was the father of King David, who was Jesus’s earthly ancestor. This glorious prediction by the great Isaiah is my favorite passage in the whole Old Testament:

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A religion is a system of beliefs based in human ideas about what underlies reality. And by that definition, the most pervasive and destructive religion of all is whatever has become of mainstream science! To be frank, this is a problem so obvious, so destructive, and so central to everything that is going wrong in the modern world that the fact that we seem to be almost the only ones who are noticing it makes me feel like the little boy in the tale of the emperor’s new clothes. Academic scientists parade around in white coats with test tubes in their pockets and continue to assure us that very soon they are going to make progress on our most basic questions, even though it is ever more obvious to anyone who is paying attention that the entire profession of non-medical scientific research mostly stalled out a century ago.

Part of the problem is that the field of scientific inquiry is less hungry than it once was. There were so many world-changing breakthroughs in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries that even now, a century later, broad societal respect and abundant funds with which to generate more breakthrough discoveries continue to flow into scientific fields that at this point really are not doing much. Nothing radically new and transformative has been produced by mainstream scientific research since Max Planck won the Nobel Prize in physics in 1918 for his work in quantum mechanics, and then Albert Einstein won the same prize in 1921, essentially for being Einstein. By now, the scientific community is reduced to trumpeting “discoveries” as irrelevant as stardust older than our solar system, and “advances” as tangential as better methods of gene-editing.

Another part of the problem with modern science is mission-creep. We have come to see science as so reliably productive of an ever-better way of life that we think it would be useful to apply its processes to just about everything. A recent article in The Atlantic calls for “a new science of progress,” saying that “Progress itself is understudied. By ‘progress,’ we mean the combination of economic, technological, scientific, cultural, and organizational advancement that has transformed our lives and raised standards of living over the past couple of centuries. For a number of reasons, there is no broad-based intellectual movement focused on understanding the dynamics of progress, or targeting the deeper goal of speeding it up. We believe that it deserves a dedicated field of study. We suggest inaugurating the discipline of ‘Progress Studies.’” Boy, talk about suffering an abject loss of focus on what should be the scientific mission!

But the primary problem with science in the twenty-first century is that, like every other religion, it is intellectually frozen in time. It reminds me of Spiritualism, which is a branch of Christianity based in communicating with the dead that was on the religious cutting edge in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Spiritualism still exists, but to attend a service and sing traditional Christian hymns with altered lyrics from hundred-year-old hymnals feels like stepping back a century in time.

Science has since the early part of the twentieth century been little more than the dead-end religion of atheism. With forty thousand versions of Christianity now fostering belief in their various versions of the Christian God, it is not surprising that a religion would be trumpeting its belief in what we might call “no-God.” Not surprising at all, but still a tragic diminishment of the once-proud field of scientific inquiry.

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Those words are more than a political slogan. In truth, they are the one absolutely fundamental fact of human existence. We should recite them daily. Perhaps use them instead of just saying “hello” to greet our friends, and cross-stitch and hang them on our bedroom wall so they are the first words we will see each morning and the last we’ll see at night. “You are a powerful, eternal being. You never began, and you never will end.” My variation on those most important words is part of the signoff from my Seek Reality podcast each week. And once you have internalized the encouragement of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and its correlate truth that I share with you, the day will come when you have grown past your human tendency to manufacture fears. You will be fearless. And you will be empowered!

The fact that our egos easily manufacture fears was at one point essential to human survival. We have talked here about the fact that the ego is not part of our eternal minds, but rather it is an artifact of our material bodies whose primary purpose is to preserve our bodies’ lives. The ego is a literal furnace of fear! We were prey animals for most of the two hundred thousand years of our existence, so our ability to react with instant terror to anything that was at all unusual was crucial. We are alpha predators now, but still ghost stories and horror movies can produce in us a thrill of fight-or-flight terror. Even though there is no actual threat. And in just the same way, every fear in our lives – from financial worries through supernatural terrors – is ego-manufactured and utterly bogus. Our task now is not to fight our fears, but rather it is to teach our minds to stop reacting to the ego’s alarms. As is true of anger, fear is an ego-manufactured reaction that can be short-circuited to the point where your ego will no longer react with fear to any kind of threat. And simply avoiding being afraid is a whole lot easier than it is to keep reacting to irrational fears the same way primitive people reacted to real dangers.

Jesus told us this, although what we have preserved in the Gospels is somewhat obscure. Of course, we cannot now know all of what He said in His more than three years of public teaching, and it may well be that those who heard Him speak considered fear to be such a normal reaction that they ignored some of what He said about it. But as we read His words now, we can see that He was impatient with the people around Him who reacted with fear to anything. For example, when a storm rocked their little boat and His terrified disciples awakened Him, He said, “Why are you afraid, you men of little faith?” Then He got up and rebuked the winds and sea, and everything became perfectly peaceful (MT 8:25-27).

He also tried to help us understand that we really have nothing to fear, since we are infinitely precious to God. He said, “Are not five sparrows sold for two cents? Yet not one of them is forgotten before God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear; you are more valuable than many sparrows (LK 12:6-7). And he told us not to worry about a lack of basic things, like having clothing or enough to eat. He said, “But seek His kingdom, and these things will be added to you. Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has chosen gladly to give you the kingdom (LK 12:31-32). When we understand that fear is the opposite of love, and that it was therefore the Lord’s intention to move us away from fear so we will be empowered to love more perfectly, we can see His efforts in His Gospel words.

The Lord speaks about fear more definitively in His Introduction to A Course in MiraclesThe Course was channeled in the late nineteen-sixties by a team of advanced beings that reportedly Jesus led. Thomas tells me that since humankind had been ignoring His Gospel teachings in favor of man-made Christian dogmas, it was the Lord’s intention to give us the same message at a more advanced level. And the Course is advanced, all right! It flies so far over our heads that few people can grasp all that it has to offer unless we read it as part of a study group. Here are its profound introductory words that came to us directly from Jesus:

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The central purpose of Jesus’s ministry was His effort to teach us how to elevate the vibrations of human consciousness enough to bring the kingdom of God on earthChristians since the age of Constantine have altogether missed this point that is so obvious to anyone who reads the Lord’s words without reference to later Christian dogmas! But most of the people who have been taught to see Jesus as a human sacrifice really don’t care what He might have said. They just want that get-out-of-hell-free card. And this, despite the fact that Jesus Himself insists that we focus on His words! He says, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (JN 8:31-32).

Jesus uses the phrases “kingdom of God” or “kingdom of Heaven” some fifty times through all four Gospels. And the more closely you read Him, the more you see that almost everything He says is tied to His effort to raise the personal consciousness vibrations of all of humankind! He wants to elevate us spiritually to the point where life on earth will begin to mirror the love and joy that pervade the afterlife levels. He cannot be any more explicit about it. And a full two thousand years ago He gave us the template and tools to succeed! So now, if we only will follow Him, that much better world for which we yearn can begin.

We have just begun to learn enough that we can imagine some details of that better world. A surprising number of people have mastered the trick of raising their own consciousness vibrations, so we can now better grasp the obvious signs of spiritual elevationAnd what is more, Jesus Himself gave us the central markers of spiritual advancement! No matter where they live or what language they speak or whether they even have a religion, spiritually elevated people are:

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It is difficult for us to comprehend the kind of love that Jesus taught. He says, If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them (LK 11:32). Instead of loving so narrowly, the Lord insists that we must “Love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men (LK 6:35). We read these words, and we are sure that Jesus cannot possibly mean them literally! Oh sure, God can love God’s enemies! God can lend, and then can forgive when the crook absconds with God’s savings. But you and I are not God! How does all this flowery high-mindedness apply to us?

We have struggled in this space to try to understand the peculiar love that Jesus taught. A love that is meant to especially focus on our enemies? We have pointed out that ancient Greek, the language in which the Lord’s Aramaic words were written down and from which they were later translated into modern languages, has at least eight words for love. But if we take the Lord’s words seriously, we realize that even agape – “love for everyone” – is not a sufficiently radical concept to satisfy what the Lord is actually saying. For one thing, Jesus insists that  our loving in the way that He loves comes before every other kind of love, and even before our love for those closest to us. It is the highest and purest form of love! He says, “He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me; and he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me” (MT 10:37).

Read those last words again. If we are being honest, I think we must conclude that Jesus isn’t talking about any of the kinds of love that you and I ever have imagined. Instead, what Jesus means by “love” is the absolute transformation of our minds. When He talks about love and forgiveness, he is talking about the fruits of our minds’ transformations as we have used the Lord’s teachings to effect those transformations. Every Christian denomination tells us to try to love and forgive without first using the Lord’s teachings to transform our minds, which is something like telling us to play real piano music the first time we ever touch a keyboard. Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (JN 8:31-32). And it turns out that our following those teachings matters a great deal more than any Christian leader ever has imagined!

 A Course in Miracles calls the kinds of love we have for friends and family members “special loves.” And it tells us that “special loves” are as spiritually negative as are “special hates.” In fact, as you will see, in this earthly illusion special loves are related to fear and hatred! They give us a way to continue to hide from the real love to which the Lord is calling us. Apparently this is what Jesus was trying to say in the Gospels in just a few words, but we never really grasped what He meant. So He said it again in the nineteen-sixties, and in profound detail! I can see no way to shorten or to summarize this teaching, so I apologize for the fact that this post is longer than usual. Please read what follows with reverence. Unlike the Gospel words of Jesus, which were part of an oral history that later went through two religion-based translations, this passage from A Course in Miracles is a literal, word-for-word message from Jesus, Who is an aspect of the Godhead Itself. God is speaking here directly! And to this day, I find it impossible to read to the end of what follows without being brought to tears. The boundlessness of the pure love of God for you in particular is beyond our ability to fathom it.

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The cruelest, stupidest, and most damaging idea that any human being ever has had is the notion that if you don’t obey God’s rules, you will spend eternity burning in hell. And it will be God who puts you there! God and His angels and all the good people who never once skipped church on Sunday will enjoy looking in from time to time and hearing you screaming as you roast, because you deserve what is happening to you. There are many sadistic variations on the hell myth, the worst of which I read decades ago and it haunts me to this day. A priest late in the nineteenth century was so frosted by the fact that some parents were not immediately having their babies baptized that he wrote a pamphlet for parents that announced what happens to babies who die unbaptized. I don’t recall most of what he said, but for sure those luckless infants go right to hell. And that isn’t all. Before their condemnation is permanent, after they have been in hell for a while, they are allowed to peek into heaven and see the children who had been baptized before they died all playing and laughing in a sunlit meadow. So those poor infant souls are going to know what their parents’ negligence has deprived them of as they roast in hell forevermore.

The people most terrorized by hell tend to be the sweetest and most earnest Christians. I get heartbreaking emails from Seek Reality listeners. And I met Ineke Koedam, a Dutch expert on transitional experiences, soon after the 2015 publication of her book  In the Light of Death – Experiences on the Threshold Between Life and Death. She told me that hospice workers often say that the people most terrified as death approaches are elderly Christians who have never so much as stolen a penny from a collection plate. But they had hell drummed into them in childhood, so they are desperately worried on the threshold of death that they haven’t been quite good enough so now the fires of hell await them. I haven’t been able to forget her stories, either. And we are told that fifteen percent or so of near-death experiences are hellish. Of course, near-death experiences are in the nature of dreams, they have nothing to do with actual death, but still it is appalling to know that so many people’s minds are willing to put them in hell. If this is what practicing Christianity can do to spiritual experiencers, to good-hearted parents, and to dear well-meaning church-ladies, then we would be better off without it!

In point of fact, there is no hellThere is no devil, either.  Those that we used to think were dead consistently tell us that neither exists; and a more accurate reading of the Gospels assures us that Jesus agrees with what the dead are saying. He encounters evil beings in the Gospels, true, but those beings by their descriptions are just demonish nasties, low-vibration gremlins that have no power at all.

The notion of a fiery hell where God will put us as punishment for our sins isn’t even remotely Christian! If you don’t believe me, then perhaps you will listen to our dear, wise friend, Fr. Richard Rohr, a Franciscan priest who heads the Center for Action and Contemplation in Albuquerque, New Mexico. What I love most about dear Fr. Richard is that he tries to make traditional Catholic teachings more responsive to the actual message of Jesus. I know from experience how impossible that is. But I dearly love him for trying! Here is what Father Richard published last Sunday. I cannot improve on it:

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The worst thing about the mainstream scientific gatekeepers’ insistence that all scientific inquiry must be based in materialism is the fact that since even matter is not solid, such a dogma makes it impossible for scientists to seek real answers to our most important questions. These central questions will vary depending on the viewpoint of the one asking them, but for most of us they seem to come down to three, in ascending order of sophistication:

  • Who and what are we? The only answer from a materialist-science perspective is that we are slabs of meat, but just the fact that we have the capacity to ask the question makes that answer insufficient. Our defining characteristic is our conscious awareness, and unless we can open-mindedly study that, we really have no reliable way to learn very much about ourselves. So this question remains scientifically wide open.
  • How is it that we and this universe exist? Scientists have been hard at work seeking a matter-based answer to this question, and the Collective has created an answer for them to find that is generally called the Big Bang. But since that answer is matter-based, it begs the question of what came before it. Nothing rooted in matter and time can ever be an ultimate answer, so this question also must be seen as still open.
  • How did life begin? Akin to the question of how reality exists is the question of how life exists. What caused those first living cells to arise from some primordial soup? Traditional scientists doing what is called Origin of Life research have generated ideas about how life might have begun, but so far they have made little progress. And now materialist scientists have some aggressive rivals in this field! By far the best Origin of Life research is being done by more open-minded scientists who are focusing on what is called intelligent design, and they are pretty well demonstrating that life could not have arisen spontaneously.

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The only way for humankind to entirely fix what is wrong with this world is to make it common knowledge now that every human life is eternal. No other attempt to repair a world gone so badly wrong would even make a dent, when compared with the transformative power of that one bit of crucial information! The truth about our eternal nature is far more than just peripheral knowledge. For everyone to know the truth right now would change everything.

 I used to wonder about this. But as I said last week, now I am certain that it is true. And the reason I am so confident is that I have been widely teaching the survival of death for more than a decade now. I have heard from many people who have described the transformative difference overcoming the fear of death has made in their lives, and I have heard from others so traumatized by Calvinism and other fear-based Christian notions that they are rather hoping their death will be extinction and not eternal hellfire! I especially recall one young man who had grown up in a fire-and-brimstone church, and now he lived in an agony of fear that the God he had learned about in church might exist, and might be gunning for him now. I laid out a reading plan for that fearful young man, and I offered to answer his questions as he learned; but he simply went away. I hear from so many people that I lost track of who he was, but fortunately about two years later he emailed me as a response to that earlier emailed reading list. And he was altogether transformed! I had suggested in my email that he keep at it because becoming certain of the truth about death could take as much as two years of study, and he was pleased to report when he emailed me back that it had taken him exactly two years. He had read not just my suggested list, but a good part of my appendix booklist besides. He told me that he knows what is going on now, he looks forward with pleasure to dying someday, and meanwhile he is dating someone and getting down to the business of living. Dear God, if I can help no one else, his email has made my whole life worthwhile!

But in fact, I have watched a great many people come to realize that their lives are eternal. This is a revelation quite different from the almost mechanical process of raising our consciousness vibrations away from fear and toward ever more perfect love by applying the Gospel teachings of Jesus. And yet, the result in people’s lives and outlooks seems to be about the same. People who have learned enough about what actually is going on to become confident that death is an illusion, that God is love, and that their own lives never will end have the following characteristics:

 A Lack of Fear

It was when I lost my own fear of death that I first noticed this lovely phenomenon. Since childhood I had been afraid of the dark, to the point where I now wonder whether my fear might have begun with that sudden flash of light in my darkened bedroom at the age of eight. I recall once in college explaining my fear of the dark to some boy I was dating. I blurted to him, “There might be anything there! Or nothing there!” My fear was primitive, and it was so overwhelming that prior to my marriage I needed a night-light to sleep. Then eventually, at about age forty, I was working at my computer one evening as the room grew dark around me. I paused briefly and looked around, and I was astonished to find that the room was pitch-black but I was not afraid! After seeing this same phenomenon in others, I have come to conclude that fear of death is the mother of all fears. When you no longer fear death, you no longer fear anything.

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I believe that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., will be judged in the long course of history to have been the greatest American of the twentieth century. Of course, there were other Americans during the last century who did remarkable things! But in the fifty-one years since Dr. King’s death his stature has risen, and it continues to rise. What he did during his thirty-nine years of life continues to shine ever brighter! And as the years and the centuries roll on from here, the various statesmen, generals, scientists, and inventors who were prominent in the twentieth century will be replaced by later figures who make new conquests and discoveries that better suit their own epochs.

Since Abraham Lincoln, there has not been anyone else with the stature of Dr. King. Just as Lincoln called us back to our founding principles and made the Founders freshly relevant in his day, so Dr. King did that for the twentieth century, and he did it with intellectual and spiritual might. Very few people in history have truly lived lives for the ages! And perhaps since Jesus walked the earth there has been no one who did more for others in fewer than forty years of life than did Dr. King. He is a genuine giant.    

As would have been true of anyone who was working so hard in the nineteen-sixties to end the long tail of slavery and help this nation at last live up to its own ideals in the area of race, Dr. King had powerful enemies. The worst of these was J. Edgar Hoover, then the longtime head of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, a man who bore Dr. King such animus that he used his position to secretly record a lot of the civil rights leader’s life; then he tried to blackmail Dr. King into killing himself. All of this has long been known. But recently documents were released from the FBI’s archives that were dated only days before Dr. King’s death, and the allegations made in them seem so damaging that in our shamefully judgmental times they even are giving some King scholars pause.

But do we have the right to judge Dr. King? What might Jesus have to say about that? Perhaps you recall this famous passage from the Book of John:

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Once we have resolved to make living and sharing the Lord’s Way our priority, how should we be managing our lives so we can act in accordance with the teachings of Jesus? In a world beset by poverty and rage, plagued by malevolent state actors, and at risk of environmental disasters, terrorism, and many little wars, how does Jesus tell us we can effectively work toward giving this world a brighter future? To what extent should we act politically? How can we best help the poor? What is the Godhead calling us to do?

Better understanding and internalizing the perfect love that Jesus taught turns out to be only a good start. Once we have learned to live God’s Oneness, we still must puzzle out what to do with it!

 And fortunately, Fr. Richsrd Rohr, the Franciscan monk who is our source for the most deeply discerning and actively positive take there could be on Christianity, has answered this question definitively. He says, “In 1998, I spent three days immersed in the life, spirit, and ministries of Mother (now Saint) Teresa’s (1910‒1997) community at the motherhouse in Calcutta….. The sisters didn’t waste time fixing, controlling, or even needing to understand what is wrong with others. Instead, they put all of their time and energy into letting God change them. From that transformed place, they serve and carry the pain of the world….

“I even dared to ask one of the leaders about one of the most common criticisms of Mother Teresa: ‘Why did Mother not speak out against social injustice? Why did she not point out the evil systems and evil people that are chewing up the poor? Why did she not risk some of her moral “capital” to call the world, and even the church, to much-needed reform?’ The answer was calm, immediate, and firsthand. Mother Teresa felt that if she took sides, or played the firebrand, that she could not be what Jesus had told her to be - love to and for all. She said that if she started correcting and pointing out ‘sinners’ she could no longer be an instrument of love and reconciliation for them. Humiliated and defensive people do not change. Like her patron Thérèse of Lisieux (1873-1897), her vocation in the church was to be love. She knew that her primary message had to be her life itself, not words or arguments or accusations. She had found that ‘third something’ that is always beyond the calculating and dualistic mind.”

Please read that last paragraph a few times today. And please keep it handy so you can read it again whenever your need not to take a political side starts to frustrate you. The world can get along just fine with fewer well-intentioned firebrands! You and I and Mother Teresa have no moral capital at all that doesn’t come from the Godhead via the teachings of Jesus. The Lord tells us even more emphatically than Mother ever could how essential it is that we who have accepted His call to follow His Way must be immersed only in the Oneness of God. The degree to which He insists that we not claim primacy, that we not fight, that we submit in all things to God’s will, astonishes us as we encounter it over and over in the Gospels. Please sit with me now at the feet of Jesus as we ask Him directly how we who seek to follow His Way should manage our lives and our work for Him. Please read each of these passages thoughtfully and with reference to your own life. The Lord says:

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The first modern people date to about two hundred thousand years ago. And that is astoundingly recent! The whole of our human existence on earth is just a hundred times the number of years that have passed since Jesus was born. And for nearly all that time we have been spiritual infants and toddlers, born repeatedly and dying soon, probably learning little in each lifetime as we struggled just to survive.  But even with that, it isn’t accurate to say that the Godhead was ignoring our worship of the often-barbaric Gods that we kept creating in our own image. God’s relationship with each individual always has been intimate. Every human being ever born has had a primary spirit guide whose role was to act internally and help that person to grow spiritually; and through those primary guides we always have been directly connected with the Godhead. In any event, the most basic spiritual lessons likely were better learned without God’s even hinting while we still were spiritual babies that eventually we were going to be trying to earn our spiritual Ph.D.s!

And of course, here again we should mention that pesky concept of time. The Godhead appears to be so disconnected from time that we cannot entirely imagine the divine perspective, no matter how we try. For example, we are told that all our earth-lives are happening at once, which means that from every earliest human life lived 200,000 years ago and right on through every far-future final necessary lifetime of every being who incarnates primarily on this planet, everything is happening right now. Clearly, we who are currently limited to just our earth-minds cannot begin to imagine the Godhead’s no-time perspective! So for now, we will make our learning a little easier by taking the matter-based position that time and our earth-lives are as perfectly linear as they seem to us to be.

The Jews of the Christian Old Testament have left us a wonderful history of some of God’s earliest attempts to spiritually awaken humankind. The Godhead likely first revealed Itself in many places on earth at around the same time. Here is how it happened for the Jewish prophet Moses in about 1500 BC: The angel of the Lord appeared to him in a blazing fire from the midst of a bush; and he looked, and behold, the bush was burning with fire, yet the bush was not consumed. So Moses said, “I must turn aside now and see this marvelous sight, why the bush is not burned up.”  When the Lord saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then He said, “Do not come near here; remove your sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” He said also, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” Then Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God (Exodus 3:2-6). What Moses had that day was an experience of light, which is a powerful tool the Godhead can use to grab our attention. The same thing happened to the Apostle Paul when Jesus recruited him (Acts 9:1-9); and it also happened to me when I was eight. Go figure.

The Old Testament reads like a fear-based history shot through with cruelty and pain. There is in it, though, a consistent strain of prophets who claimed to be speaking for God.  With everything we have learned about how things work, we know that these prophets were recruited before birth, and their life-plans would have included doing this work for the Godhead. But they always had the free-will right to refuse the task at any point! I was assured by Thomas after I had tried to refuse to write Liberating Jesus Jesus that if I had not finally yielded, others were in line to take my place. There are roughly sixteen Old Testament prophets, although the count can differ depending on whether a few borderline figures are included. The prophetic period of Jewish history extends from 1450 BC until a century or so before the birth of Jesus, and for our purposes there are six main themes. Here they are, each  with an example of what the prophets claimed that God was saying to us:

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I hear from many people now who are leaving Christianity. Most are in their fifties or sixties and have lived their lives as religious Christians. They haven’t lost their faith at all, but rather they have simply outgrown Christianity’s pathetic promise of a get-out-of-hell-free card so long as we keep warming the pews. Most of them are devoted to Jesus and believe in God sincerely, no matter how they feel about the religion; but they know there has to be a lot more to God! They seek to better understand what is true. They often seem to me to be touchingly like teenagers, people who have lived their lives as spiritual children and are only now wondering how it might feel to become real spiritual adults. Perhaps they’ve found YouTubes from the period when I was making YouTubes, or they’ve found my interviews with George Noory on Gaia TV; and whatever I said made them think I held a key to the door they have been trying to open. So they write and ask me various questions that generally include their wanting reassurance that God won’t smite them for having had a few independent thoughts.

The fact that people earnestly trying to follow the Jesus of the Gospels might ever worry about God’s wrath is a sharp indictment of Christianity! We have talked here at perhaps tedious length about the pagan roots of the Christian God, the burden of humanmade Christian dogmas, and the fact that, like all fear-based religions, Christianity as it is being practiced can be spiritually counterproductive. We have talked this topic to death! But as I answer questions from Christian seekers who keep circling back to their deep-seated terrors of a God that is nothing like the genuine Godhead, I realize I still haven’t done enough to help you understand the breathtaking chasm of difference that yawns between the God of the Christians and the genuine, eternal Godhead that Jesus first introduced to us.

The Christian God is a benevolent king. What other sort of God could ancient people have invented? God is powerful, but God is fair. He expects us to submit and to toe His line, and in return He will supply our needs; but if we disobey, we will feel God’s wrath. And since He is God, that is right and just. The Christian God is a ruthless totalitarian ruler. And for millennia, most people have been glad about that. We knew we needed to be kept in line!  

But Jesus in the Gospels frankly tells us that He came to reset our image of God. He introduces to us the genuine Godhead of which He is an integral aspect. Only think about that! God entered a human body so God could personally introduce Godself. We cannot imagine any greater love! Jesus tells us that the true God is perfectly loving Spirit, and that God never judges anyone. He urges us to think of the Godhead not as a powerful king far above us in rank, but more as a Daddy who dotes on us. That is the point of His repeatedly referring to God as “Father.” Let’s look at just a sampling of the many wonderful things that Jesus says about God:

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There is no powerful evil entity in opposition to God. It doesn’t matter whether you call him Satan, Lucifer, Beelzebub, Mephistopheles, or perhaps you just call him the plain ol’ devil. Unlike the Godhead, he does not and cannot exist in any way that matters. And this is true, even despite the fact that we can trace the notion of powerful devils back as far as there are ancient gods, and Wikipedia offers us more than seventy names for the Ultimate Bad Guy.

You can have no idea of just how much I didn’t want to talk about this! I have seen too much. Ghastly possessions and hauntings. I know the power that evil entities can have over our minds if we allow them in, so emphatically I will never use a Ouija board. I won’t watch a movie about evil, nor will I casually utter Satan’s name. So when Thomas first proposed this topic, my immediate reaction was, “Hard pass on that!” Who wants to offend the devil by announcing the fact that he cannot exist? But Thomas sensibly reminded me that for us to fear evil entities only further empowers them. He insists it is time that we trust God enough to give to evil no quarter. So, here goes!

Those that we used to think were dead confirm that the Godhead has no powerful opposition. They also tell us that there is no hell beyond the gloomy outer darkness that Jesus talks about, and no judgment by anyone but ourselves. This testimony from those who really know the truth is abundant, and it is comforting; but it is only as we come to better understand what we might call the physics of the greater reality that we begin to see why this must be so. We will need a quickie physics course here if you want to understand why a powerful devil is as absurd an idea as is the notion of dry liquids or burning ice.

What we refer to as “the greater reality” is simply understood to be all that exists. It is probably not really all that exists, but it is all that we have any way to access. The simplest way to envision the greater reality is as theoretical physicists do (although they have no idea that is what they are doing!). They calculate by the motion of planets and the universe’s speed of expansion that about 27% of what exists is what they call “dark matter,” and 68% is what they call “dark energy.” It’s dark because it won’t react with photons of light, so therefore we know that it cannot be particle-based matter or its correlate energy.

Less than five percent of what exists is the traditional matter that makes up this material universe, while the rest is the non-material aspect of the greater reality. So you see, the greater reality is twenty times the size of this material universe! Yet its footprint seems to be no greater than whatever footprint the material universe occupies. It is composed of many different dimensions, just as all the hundreds of TV channels are located together in your living room and separated only by their vibratory rates. Your TV can tune to the energy of any one channel and pick up a picture; and in just the same way, the greater reality is an energy spectrum all located right where we are. Aspects of it are solid, but they are not made of particulate matter. In fact, the entire greater reality beyond this universe is both sizeless and timeless. At this moment, your mind is tuned to that body on this material level of reality. When you sleep, your mind frequently tunes to a higher vibratory rate and you travel in one of the dimensions of the non-material astral plane. When you die, your mind will tune to the Summerland levels of the afterlife portion of the astral plane, and you will be in actual heavenDo you see how the greater reality works?

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There are many people now spreading the word that we all survive the death of our bodies. A lot of them are near-death experiencers, so what they are teaching is little more than the fruit of their own mental adventures; but still, we are the first generation for which universal human survival of death feels like a strong possibility. So we also are the first generation to realize that universal human survival means that a lot of the physics developed over the last millennium has to be wrong.

I began my search for the truth about death as an open-minded skeptic. It took me years of reading century-old communications from those that we used to think were dead to be confident that there were so many consistencies in those reports – and no inconsistencies at all! – that the afterlife has to be real. But if the afterlife is real, then where the heck is it? To try to answer that question, I did a lot more research. I read books about scientific anomalies, astral travels, near-death experiences, ghosts and apparitions, psychic abilities, quantum physics, and various random phenomena. And I did that for decades before I found one book that fits with everything I had learned and sensibly explains it all.

That seminal book is Your Eternal Self by Dr. R. Craig Hogan, first published in 2008. I devoured Craig’s book with the sense that all the lights were turning on at last, not only in the room and in the house around me but also in my neighborhood and in all the world. I finally got it! I understood it all! What I had discovered in doing afterlife research and all that later research to try to figure out where the afterlife was happening actually fits together perfectly. I just had never had the vision to realize how much bigger and more complex the greater reality actually is. Craig Hogan has a vision that dwarfs my own. So I had to meet him! I sent him fan mail, I brought him to Austin and sponsored a very successful speaking engagement, and I eagerly talked with him for hours. Forever after, Craig Hogan has been my wise and beautiful mentor, and he has been my Seek Reality guest more than thirty times in eight years. To this day, whenever I have an especially stubborn question, I find that he has already thought about it and he can propose a good answer. Craig understands what is going on as does really nobody else on earth. He understands it all so completely that he can answer your stupidest questions in a way that makes you actually feel smart for having asked them. And now he is outdoing himself!

Craig Hogan has written four definitive books that together summarize his life’s work. Three of these books are already in print, and we have discussed them on Seek Reality. They are: Your Eternal Self: Science Discovers the Afterlife,which is an update of his 2008 breakthrough; Reasons for What Happens to You in Your Life and Your Afterlife: Revealed by Speakers in the Afterlifeand There is Nothing But Mind and Experiences. Craig’s easily-read summary of these three books is called Answers to Life’s Enduring Questions: From Science Discoveries and Afterlife Revelations. It will be out by the end of the year. Craig Hogan’s books are scholarly, while mine are meant for casual readers. His books are extensively sourced and end-noted, and at the same time they are entertaining and surprisingly easy to read.

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