Religion

Everybody’s heard about Hell and has a pretty good idea what that word means, but do they KNOW for sure what the word means? . . . no. We do the same thing with the word God, and like God we have far reaching variables when it comes to the physical reality of eithers existence.

The Christian version of Hell has fire and brimstone and eternal damnation for any soul that goes there. There’s also a mini Hell for Catholics called Purgatory, that’s a place to go when we’re not quite bad enough for the real Hell or good enough for Heaven. In time it’s even possible to work one’s way out of Purgatory and into Heaven.

Heaven, being a place of perfect beauty and everlasting peace, promises that upon arrival a feast is prepared at the table where Jesus and the saints await us. Afterwards, with full bellies, we’ll walk the gold paved streets of New Jerusalem, drinking wine in a self filling cup while having eternal fellowship with the saints forever. What’s not to like about that? Truth be known, that doesn’t even appeal to me, I think I’d opt for the Islamic version where martyred believers go immediately to paradise and receive 72 virgins. That sounds like more fun.

Now I hope it’s obvious that I am just poking fun at some of our ridiculous ideas when it comes to Heaven and Hell. If anything it’s far more possible that upon our death we drop the physical body off at the morgue and revert to the same vibration (state) we originally came from, hopefully after learning something eternal during our visit.

Now, the low vibration of Hell may suit some of us, but that will be a place of our own making, a comfort zone where we will fit in with the crowd of degenerates we related to best in this life. . . so to speak. All that Dante’s Inferno stuff was created by the church to keep us fearful and in line with doctrine.

“OMG how can you say that?” you ask?

Following is my answer based upon the pretext that we are already in Hell and are too dumb to realize it.

What happened? What caused the environment, as signified in the bible as the allegorical Garden of Eden, to change into the polluted chaos we have today? Simple. We, through our own free will, created it. Singularly and corporately, we have created this hell we now live in. WHY? Because of spiritual laziness and a complete lack of understanding concerning who/what we are.

Eons ago cunning men created religion and set themselves up as intermediaries between us and God. We willingly gave up our personal connection to the Godhead and by doing so have spent eons in a slavery of our own making. The priests took control of our minds and began to teach us little more than what had already been planted within us by our creator. Forgetting the truth we grasped hold of the lie and followed it down a trail to nowhere (our present state) . . . and the rest is history.

Religion is the name of the power that has spiritually controlled us ever since the beginning when men found themselves alone and afraid in a strange new world. The place was chaos, in a moment they could be killed and eaten. Instinctively knowing there was something greater than themselves, they reached out for knowledge and security. Religion and the priesthood was there to give them a hands up.

Soon religion controlled them as well as killed them. Look around, it is so clear, so obvious, that it takes a deep set fear of retribution not to see it. I mean, really folks, religious wars abound, killing for God is the order of the day right now and nothing has really changed since the beginning of time has it? When has the entire world’s population been at peace?  I don’t know of a time. I hear a lot of promises and declarations about peace, but I also hear that we must fight, and kill, and die in order to obtain them.

That we can kill our way to peace rings hollow to me. Is that even possible? Even while engendering the law of ‘faith’ that is a huge reach, especially if you take collateral damage from drones and bombers into question. Everything I sense on this planet feels to me like we are on the pathway to Hell.

OK by now everybody’s probably convinced they are reading a freaked out atheistic viewpoint.  And further, I am on my way to Hell in a handbasket for saying this stuff. HA! Well, actually I am not an atheist. I do have a deep and abiding belief in spiritual law.

I believe in a Creator so far above our understanding that we are like fish in a bowl of water sitting on the living room table trying to figure out what goes on in the room surrounding us. Life is a mystery to us all . . . and those who desire to know that mystery or anything about the workings of our Creator by reading and studying a holy book must IMO drop it on the table beside the fishbowl and receive their knowledge by studying the natural environment surrounding them.

The artist is revealed within his works . . . not in a book. A book can only point the way towards the garden . . . it is not, nor ever can be, the garden.

Any other way to the Creator will find one pissing into the winds of religion. This is, and has always been, an individual quest, and to begin this searching one must go within themselves to find that amazing person they can become if they only open those doors to the soul they have kept locked for so long.    

The Big Question . . .

who am iWho am I anyway? What am I? What’s my purpose . . . or is there even a purpose to any of this?

These are a few of the questions I have been asking myself over the years and trying to figure out. Questions upon questions run through my mind like a junkie chasing his next fix . . . but usually the answers elude me and I have to experience a thing before I learn it’s lesson. . . . bummer . . .

Why can’t I just believe! Have faith! Listen to what they tell me! Read the good book, follow directions and queue up behind my choice of religion along with the rest of the crowd. Then I would just have to pay my tithes, listen to the pied piper and prepare for Heaven . . . or (gasp) follow this path I’m currently on and find myself on a one way trip to Hell. “That’s the choice you have Jimbo . . . get used to the idea of Hell because you ain’t good enough for Heaven! . . . even if you had 15 more lives, you wouldn’t make the grade.

I’m not really bragging, but I do have a lengthy resume when it comes to experience on this earthly plain. In short, after a dysfunctional upbringing and a regular high school education, I have been an airborne soldier…been a hippie . . . been a devout Christian (now a devout reprobate). . . been an Alaskan fisherman and off season bush rat . . . been a carpenter/home builder. I am a husband . . . a father . . . a writer . . . an amateur guitar maker . . . and most of all . . . I am a watcher.

The one great truth I have learned during all that watching is that NOBODY seemingly knows their ass from a hole in the ground when it comes to God. I’ve run into a lot of folks who have tried to verse me in their self interpreted ways of the Lord, but the only way that works for me spiritually speaking is MY way. . . . and MY way is fraught with dangers, because alongside this personal freedom dwells personal responsibility, and that word seems to be one of the scariest words in the English language. NOBODY seems to want anything to do with it. LOOK around, WATCH closely. From the president on down all you see are fingers pointing and tongues wagging. No wonder we are in such bad shape. . . bye bye, miss American pie .

In the early days (right after the crazy hippie days), I lived on a Christian commune where the religiosity was enormous and the social order was as restricted as the military unit I once served with. I did all the right stuff, said the right words, even attempted to sing on key while singing for my supper, but ultimately I had to walk out on the ‘family’ because of the religious nonsense.  Although I wore the proper uniform, I knew beneath it all I was play acting.

Now, to get to the point. There ARE rules, and spiritual rules are stronger than any physical rules. Rules that religious thought are based upon. These same rules that are taught in every religion on the planet and followed by almost no one . . . are LOVE, MERCY, and GRACE.

I’m a builder. I build homes and just about anything else from musical instruments to dog houses. One thing I fully understand is that for a house to stand the test of time it must have a proper foundation.  It is absolutely essential. The foundation must begin below the frost line, carefully built up and properly backfilled. Everybody knows in the trades that most buyers barely check the foundation and spend most of their time scrutinizing the paint job. So where does the greatest effort go on the builders part? You got it.

The main religions on this planet are all pretty much created on the same principles of love, mercy, and grace. But after that the foundation goes in and up in a heated rush, it can be crooked and out of level and ugly as hell, but no one cares after the sill plates and floor are on to cover the shoddy work. The rest of the house is hurriedly roughed in until they get to the paint job and finish trim, then it’s ‘take your time and do a good job’ time. Welcome to the large, expensive, and beautifully laid out churches of today. Joel Olsteen comes to mind. What a sham that smiley young man is fostering upon the zillions of people who believe his nonsense.

No wonder our kids are leaving the churches in droves, they are smart enough to see the degradation and want no part of it. Trouble is when they see nothing but phoney, they are losing the reality of the principles these churches were built upon. They become wandering stars with no direction, that operate in the physical sense of doing what feels good.

I know for sure that I have no desire to teach, or be a leader over anybody. I am merely a watcher. I don’t even like people all that much these days. I have just one goal in these writings and that is to reveal to YOU that WE are powerful spiritual beings that are personally responsible for ourselves. We will never know any of that power unless we build the proper structure to contain it and we build it upon a foundation of love, mercy, and grace.

So although I may have a somewhat disjointed viewpoint of religion, I have researched it, meditated upon it, and it has become my reality. Because of that, the dusty old salvation story as well as the book it is written in has evolved into a new and very exciting reality I hope to share in this medium via my personal experience of watching the goings on around me for these many years.

Religion and spirituality is only a small part of what I am going to be writing about, but this watching all took place under His eye and on His turf, so I think it only proper to first give Him center stage. I have a lot of observations that are funny as well as many that are sad and a zillion in between so stick around you’ll find something to laugh at . . . (I hope)!

Tatyana

Trouble is, when you hear people flippantly throw the nuke option around as if it is one . . . what happens to the music, the artwork, the writings, the entire culture underneath the bomb? . . . . What will happen to Tatyana?

Thought for the Day: Would You Rather Be a Cow? — Goodnight, Apollo

What a weird question. I recall saying nothing, but wondering why I had been asked this strange question – in the first place. The answer may surprise you. It surprised me. I was shown a cow, and a large pasture. It was beautiful. The cow had acres to run through, and a little creek towards […]

via Thought for the Day: Would You Rather Be a Cow? — Goodnight, Apollo

A Dog Story (repost)

Copy of raventhedog

Everybody loves a dog story . . . right? Well here’s my latest one. It happened yesterday.


I arose from my reading and looked out the front window. The sun was beginning to brighten the hilltop across the narrow country lane and Raven, who was watching my every move, knew it was walk time. I knew she was about to go into her, ‘super dance for a walk,’ routine so I calmed her with a nose bump (pitbulls like that) and got things together for the walk outside to Max’s pen.

Every morning without fail, as soon as they see each other, both dogs break the silence by yelping and barking at one another when Raven attempts to play ‘attack’ with Max. It’s no big deal though, because there are no closeby neighbors. Anyways, once lined up and moving in a straight line things get quiet again and we are on our way down the middle of the lane for our daily trip to the head of the valley and back.

I generally spend my time daydreaming and looking for herbs alongside the road while the dogs try and see how many of those herbs they can pee on before I get to them. The lane itself winds gently through heavy woods and is always scattered with various animal scents, so along with herb hunting I spend my time cajoling, pleading, and pulling at the the dog’s leashes, one in each hand like a guy driving a mule team trying to keep the whole thing going in a straight line. One more big, strong dog and I will be skating on the soles of my boots.

All is fine until I get about a half mile from the cabin when I begin to see a blood trail on the road. ‘Wow, someone must have hit a deer’, I thought at first. Then I glanced over at Max and saw that he was the guy bleeding . . . not just beeding . . .  HE WAS GUSHING BLOOD! . . . Bright red blood that was squirting from his front pad in a long thin stream.

I quickly went to my knees in the middle of the road and grabbed the foot in order to apply enough pressure to stop the bleed. As I did, Raven, probably thinking it was play time dove on Max and would not stop no matter how hard I tried or how hard I yelled. . . she went totally nuts when she smelled the blood that by this time was pooling around us. I had to stop her!  I HAD TO STOP THE BLEED! . . . I only had minutes until my beloved old Max would be dead. It was imperative that I react quickly and take charge of the situation, but how? I had absolutely nothing to work with. No phone (it’s on the table back home). No med kit ( in my room back home) No help (as there are few folks in this valley and only about ten cars a day go up this roadway).

First things first . . . I jerked Raven free, pulled her across the road and tied her leash to a tree. Went back to where Max by now was laying quietly in the road and grabbed his foot and applied pressure with one hand while taking off my boot with the other . . . I ripped out the string, tore off my sock and made up a tourniquet by wrapping the sock around the leg at the point where I thought the artery was and tied it tight with the shoe string. The arterial bleeding slowed to a trickle. In my favor, (and his) Max was very good during all this.

Back across the street, I went for Raven who was by now totally wrapped around the tree and choking on her special choke collar. Seeing the uselessness of trying to get the leash free I pulled my knife and cut it leaving just enough for me to grab hold of. Once free I began running back to the cabin with Raven in tow. My goal was to run the half mile back get Raven in the pen, get the pickup and drive back to Max and get him to the vet.

Now I’m 75 years old, and believe it or not that is a huge liability when it comes to doing stuff like this. Regardless, heart attack be damned . . . I’M SAVING THIS DOG’S LIFE! So off I go trotting up the road when I heard a vehicle slam on it’s brakes and slide in the gravel behind me. . . SHIT!! . . . Someone just hit my dog!

Looking back, I saw the red pickup of my neighbor who lives up the street coming towards me. Mike stopped, “What the hell’s going on? You need help?”

Yes! . . .Go back and get Max! . . . I need to get this damn dog (Raven ) into a pen and Max to the vet . . . she’s bleeding out if I don’t!

“OK . . . . take it easy man, your gonna have a heart attack, slow down! I’ll get Max and be right back.

Zoom . . . off he goes . . . Zoom . . . off I go. Just as I got to the house Mike pulled in with Max sitting in the bed of his truck. I gave him a hero’s welcome and a thousand thank you’s as I dove into the house, awaken my wife to call the vet, grabbed my med kit, fixed Max up proper by exchanging the sock for a pressure bandage, got him into my truck blood and all, (something good can be said about old pickups) and headed to the vet’s office.

The vet got squirted in the face and arm, but found and stitched the cut artery in time to save Max. Now he has a custom pen on my front porch where I feed him and doctor him until he gets better.

Moral of the story . . . you never know when a disaster will hit. Carry a med kit! I have enough first aid stuff for a whole platoon and yet when I needed it, it was tucked away in my bedroom and I had to rely on a dirty sock and a shoelace. You don’t need a large cumbersome pack, either. I’d suggest making your own and putting stuff in it that actually come in handy, a lot of junk you’ll never use is sold off in the pre-packaged kits. Maybe later on I will post a good small kit for a day hike or a chain sawing accident, etc. . . . . . . JW