Sunday, September 27, 2015


38Pilate said to Him, "What is truth?" And when he had said this, he went out again to the Jews and said to them, "I find no guilt in Him.: John 18:38

This particular bible verse has always resonated with me.  No matter what your view of truth is this is an ironic moment and a very human moment. A man, a human being who has temporarily been given fallen into or whatever a position of "authority" has just asked one of the most important questions a human can ask. Depending on your own world view he has at the least just asked the wisest most devout and holy Jewish Rabbi/teacher a question that has cosmic implications. At the most he has just asked the very manifestation of all that is love, being, wisdom, life the very image of "God" the most important question a human could ask. But, what does he do? He turns away and walks back out to the crowd. So very sad and so very human. He really wasn't looking for the truth. He was looking for his own political and personal absolution of responsibility. In other words he was just doing what "we" do.

"You can't handle the truth." ....A Few Good Men

That one has fallen into the great American quote book.But, the thing is the character was having a melt down. He had "his" truth and it should have been self evident to all the "idiots" he was talking to at that time. Again, it's what we do. We talk at each other not with each other. 

"Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth."...Albert Einstein 

So many people give away their power and their soul to political agendas and religious teachers and pop scientists masquerading as philosophers. I see so many facebook quotes of people yelling at each other. Calling names and saying "Well, Bush, Clinton, Obama, Nixon and on and on and on" did it first. So What? Does that mean you give your "team" a free pass? That's a dangerous road folks. Hold em all accountable. I have a secret for you. Anybody of any party that has ascended to high state or national office is indebted to some other power, money or group. So, stop acting like they are angels sent from the forces of holiness and hold em all accountable. But, I digress. Often. :-)

I have a secret that some of my brothers and sisters in Christ or the church that I grew up with will find heretical. Now, I'm not one of those former Christians that became an angry atheist. I'm not angry or atheist. But, I have to tell ya something that some of us "formerly fundi" folks think. At least I do. The angry god that you worship? The one who is a meglo maniac and burns poor sinners in hell forever? The one who can't even look at the creation "he made" and the one who is always smiting enemies and cursing people and making you bow and scrape? He's not someone that I would want to spend eternity groveling in front of. 

I thought of this when I think of my son. If I made my son come to me and say "Father, I am but a worm in thy site. Deserving of eternal pain and torment. Filthy and wicked and unworthy of thy love. Please accept my undying worship and love" What do ya think would happen? He would either hate me and wish he could just tell the truth or some where down the line DHR would be called. 

I'll tell some of my "science" minded friends this. A world where the only goal is to procreate and head to personal oblivion isn't a world I would ever want to be born into. You can use jargon and high sounding words. But, if you put lipstick on a pig you still have a pig.

So, what is truth? I find truth in being honest and open in my own meditations. That doesn't mean taking a guru or making a fourth person of the "godhead" out of the bible. I find truth in looking at the night sky. Not, in the myth of it all being a chemical reaction in my brain. 

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things....Philippians 4:8

So, if you find the bible to be inerrant then I'm fine with that. Just understand that I don't take your judgements or interpretation of the bible as having any authority over my mind or life at all. If you think Carl Sagan or Richard Dawkins are all wise on all things outside their own narrow field of expertise then I'm fine with that. Just know that I don't share that bleak and narrow worldview for my own soul. If you think Obama is a Kenyan and Bush was a patriot for flying planes from Texas to Alabama during Vietnam. But, Kerry was a coward although he went to Vietnam then I'm fine with that. But, I don't share your worldview about what makes a brave American. If you think everyone who disagrees with the president is a racist backwoods hick then I'm fine with that. But, I don't share such a stereotypical worldview.

So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets: Matthew 7:12 ESV

That's my truth. That's my religion these days. I often fall short. I often treat people the way they treat me. Which isn't the same thing. :-)



Monday, September 14, 2015

What Dreams May Come.

  When you are old and gray and full of sleep,
    And nodding by the fire, take down this book,
    And slowly read, and dream of the soft look
    Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep;

I fell in love with this poem years ago due to a episode of the "New Twilight Zone."  1985 or so. From what I can remember a scientist in a lab is working on some sort of holographic projector. Somehow a human fetus is captured and grows though the stages of child, girl, woman, and old age. The woman says she is from the early part of the 20th century. It turns out that she died in childbirth and the scientist is the reincarnation of her husband who never forgave himself. Yeats, the author of "When You Are Old" is featured in their discussions. This particular poem is quoted at the close of the show. As the woman is dying she somehow uses a message to send the scientist back to his wife without the guilt and ready to continue this lifetime. Anyway, it stayed with me. I have heard this poem described as sad but I don't think it is.

    How many loved your moments of glad grace,
    And loved your beauty with love false or true,
    But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,
    And loved the sorrows of your changing face;

Somehow to me it has always spoken of eternal relationship and the continuance of love and relationship.

And bending down beside the glowing bars,
    Murmur, a little sadly, how Love fled
    And paced upon the mountains overhead
    And hid his face among a crowd of stars.

I look up at the night sky from time to time. I'm always awed and wonder how anybody would prefer a street light or neon pollution to the majesty of that sky. But, sadly, floodlights come on out here in the country where I live and so I have to find a place where the stars can be seen.
Another thing about the night sky. I've heard people say it makes them feel small and insignificant. It has the opposite effect on me. I feel like I fill the whole universe. That if I could just get quiet and "see" that I am part of and belong to infinity.
It's the feeling I get when I get into that rare "sweet spot" when I pray or meditate. If I could just not have to pee for a blooming minute. :-)
Ahh, the joys of growing older. It's really not for sissies.

 But, somehow if I and you can just see it. There's still stars to see and roads to travel. I think one of the things that started me this evening was thinking about old friends and classmates and family members who have gone on. I look sadly at the lined faces and even at my own crows feet and graying hair. But, on the other hand I think it's all part of a journey and not a destination.
I have had some dreams where I knew I was dreaming but that was okay. I saw a quote the other day. "What if we are dreaming and when we die. We wake up!"
I have my faith and some would cringe and call it heretical. Some would call it pie in the sky. I have learned a few things in my 58 year journey on this planet. One of those things is that God loves the truth. So, I can be honest about my thoughts. I had a wise woman say to me once. "Steve, don't tell anybody, everything except God." I find that to be true.
To Sleep: Perchance to dream ay, there's the rub.
Revelation 3:12 makes reference of being a pillar in the temple of God and not having to leave it anymore. I'm not going to tell you or try to persuade you of any theology. I just love the verse. It resonates with me.

 There will come a time and place and I will be home. But, right now? I'm still on the journey. Once I'm finished with this leg of it? I await with Shakespeare to see "What Dreams May Come."