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How the 'Spiritual Not Religious' Gospel Has Spread


Society & Culture  (tags: activists, americans, culture, education, family, freedoms, gayrights, government, law, media, politics, religion, rights, society )

Kit
- 508 days ago - alternet.org
Much of the religious dynamism in the United States happens outside the church walls -- and has for some time now.



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Kit B. (277)
Sunday November 25, 2012, 9:27 am
( Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com/djgis)


You can call them “unaffiliated,” as in a recent Pew poll, or “nones” -- or even just “not very religious.” A new poll by the Public Religion Research Institute divides this group further (and somewhat counterintuitively) into “unattached,” “atheists/agnostics,” and “seculars.” But whatever you call them, this ever-growing cohort of unchurched Americans makes up, at 23 percent, the single largest segment of Barack Obama’s “religious coalition” (compared to the 37 percent of white evangelicals who support Mitt Romney).

While we have yet to see a “Seculars for Obama” bumper sticker, the unaffliated are clearly having a moment. Media analysis, however, has not gone very deep -- there is a story here that goes beyond names and numbers.

Recent sociological work from Courtney Bender, Christian Smith, and others does help us understand who the current crop of unaffiliated are and what they do and believe. Yet we have precious little historical understanding of this critical and growing demographic. What are their roots? What religious, cultural, economic, demographic, and political processes shaped their sensibilities, habits, and makeup?

In order to understand these still-believing “nones,” we need to understand that much of the religious dynamism in the United States happens outside the church walls, and has for some time now. The “rise of the nones” is but the latest phase in the long transformation of religion into what we now commonly call “spirituality.” In my class on “Spirituality in America” at the University of Virginia, we use Leigh Schmidt’s pathbreaking Restless Souls to trace this phenomenon over two centuries, from Ralph Waldo Emerson’s break with New England Unitarianism in the 1830s to the multibillion dollar spirituality industry of today.

Spirituality can mean many things, of course, and the language of spirituality is used by traditional religious adherents as well as the religiously unaffiliated. But only the “nones” have made it into a cliché: “spiritual but not religious.”

The history of American spirituality reveals that our commonplace understanding of spirituality—as the individual, experiential dimension of human encounter with the sacred—arose from the clash of American Protestantism with the forces of modern life in the nineteenth century. While religious conservatives fought to stem the tide, giving rise to fundamentalism, religious liberals adapted their faith to modernity, often by discarding orthodoxies in favor of Darwinism, psychology, and comparative religions.

The majority of today’s religious “nones” -- those who claim no religion but still embrace spirituality -- are engaged in the same task of renovating their faith for a new historical moment. And typically, they draw from this same liberal religious toolkit. Today’s unaffiliated, like the liberals of previous generations, typically shun dogma and creed in favor of a faith that is practical, psychologically attuned, ecumenical -- even cosmopolitan -- and ethically oriented.

This liberal spirituality, as it has evolved over time, has been deeply entwined with media-oriented consumerism. Of course Americans of all religious varieties have been deeply influenced by consumerism, but media and markets have particularly shaped the religious lives of those without formal institutional or community ties. The religiously unaffiliated might not attend services, but they “do” their religion in many other ways: they watch religion on TV and listen to it on the radio; find inspiration on the web; attend retreats, seminars, workshops, and classes; buy candles and statues, bumper stickers and yoga pants; take spiritually motivated trips; and, perhaps most significantly, buy and read books.

Since the 1920s, when the major New York trade presses first started offering nonsectarian religious books in significant numbers, books have been the most important conduit for spreading the “spiritual but not religious” gospel.

This dependency on the consumer marketplace, and especially books, has had significant consequences for the religious lives of all Americans, especially the unaffiliated. First, it has enhanced the tendencies within American religion toward a therapeutic understanding of the spiritual life. The profit-oriented commercial presses that came to dominate religious publishing naturally pursued the largest market possible for their goods, and seized on the non-creedal, nonsectarian, and psychologically modern forms of faith advanced by religious liberals as a common American religious vernacular. These trends have only accelerated from the 1920s to the present, such that now the line between religion and self-help disappears in the spirituality section of Barnes & Noble.

Second, spiritual consumerism has fostered a robust cosmopolitanism. Books allow readers entry into previously unimaginable religious worlds. Since trade presses entered the religion game with vigor, the lines of denomination and tradition have mattered less and less. The political and moral imperatives of World War II provided the greatest stimulus to such interfaith reading, and before long even the Protestant-Catholic-Jew formulation of the era could not contain American readers. What matters to the unaffiliated is not imprimatur but inspiration.

The Notre Dame sociologist Christian Smith has observed, “Liberal Protestantism’s organizational decline has been accompanied by and is in part arguably the consequence of the fact that liberal Protestantism has won a decisive, larger cultural victory.” The “cultural victory” Smith and others write about happened not because more Americans joined liberal churches, in other words, but because liberal religious values and sensibilities became more and more culturally normative. And no single cultural force has been more significant to this profound religious shift than the unabashed consumerism of the religious book business in the twentieth century.

Even as religious affiliations decline, religious books sales continue to rise, as they have steadily for more than a half century. In this ultimate spiritual marketplace, American religion displays its full shape-shifting vitality.
****

by: Matthew S. Hedstrom is assistant professor of religious studies and American studies at the University of Virginia | alternet |

**The article is reprinted with permission from Religion Dispatches.
 

Kit B. (277)
Sunday November 25, 2012, 9:29 am

Could it be that formally "traditional" religious institutions have a lesson to learn from the changing beliefs of many Americans?
 

pam w. (187)
Sunday November 25, 2012, 11:07 am
Certainly, the hypocrisy, greed and arrogance of many organized religions are driving people away.

But...could it not ALSO be that growing numbers of Americans are learning we don't need superstition to live valuable, fulfilled lives?

 

Kit B. (277)
Sunday November 25, 2012, 1:23 pm

And...it is interesting Pam that those who make a choice to live without any formal religion still care about the planet, about the needs of those who have less, give time and money to aid the poor, save animals from harm, care deeply about this country and the world, and need no organized any thing to do that. I do believe that one reason for this discontent with many religions is the realization that just too many "churches" are but another form of corporate influence in their daily lives.
 

Lin Penrose (92)
Sunday November 25, 2012, 9:38 pm
Noted and thanks Kit, I noticed that 'Americans' are most mentioned. Is is possible that religions or the interpretations of that term, are changing throughout the world? Perhaps that is a factor with increasing violence of some religious factions afraid of losing the power and controls they had/have? Although historically, religions are associated with violence, terror, power, control. Keeping humans ignorant and/or controlling the information, education, communications available, also historical intelligence and experience, created the walls for continued, over all control, and the benefits that come with those powers.

Religions and politicians (very close relatives - nearly incest) use the Carrot and the Stick applications - Heavens and Hells, with some mysteries only They - the special ones- can interpret, mixed in.

Spirituality, is a different type of awareness, regarding the individual and their respective and/or perspectives, with the smallest to the largest aspects of this earth and universe(s). The individual is the interpreter - no gods, goddess or self appointed leaders needed. Knowledge, truth and open communication of all types are good guides.
 

Frans Badenhorst (538)
Monday November 26, 2012, 2:38 am
noted......
 

Gloria picchetti (279)
Monday November 26, 2012, 2:59 am
Interesting.
 

Deb E. (0)
Monday November 26, 2012, 4:47 am
noted
 

Theodore Shayne (56)
Monday November 26, 2012, 8:11 am
Long as I don't have to go out and kill in the name of this god or that god. I'll stick with quantum physics. BTW Christian, your Jesus said that the law and the prophets could be summed up in two commandments. Those were to love your neighbor as yourself; to do unto others as you would have it done to you. Since Muslims consider Iesu a prophet they should heed his words as well. The resonance you create in turn creates the reality you will inherit. The way humanity is going now it will not be pretty.
For those Chiliastic millienialists who think some sky god or messiah or twelfth imam is going to come down; kill all the nonbelievers; correct the environmental problems and establish a theocratic government you are sorely mistaken. Please drink the Koolaid if you must but don't poison the rest of us with your myopic agenda. It's time we cleaned up our own mess rather than hoping someone else will do it for us.
 

Gene Jacobson (233)
Monday November 26, 2012, 1:33 pm
"The majority of today’s religious “nones” -- those who claim no religion but still embrace spirituality -- are engaged in the same task of renovating their faith for a new historical moment. And typically, they draw from this same liberal religious toolkit. Today’s unaffiliated, like the liberals of previous generations, typically shun dogma and creed in favor of a faith that is practical, psychologically attuned, ecumenical -- even cosmopolitan -- and ethically oriented."

Amusing. Interesting. Both and more. I was raised Swedish Lutheran, whatever that is, in a small country church that my mother's family built. I read before grade school and my first book was a large children's bible, we are talking several hundred pages, that I read over and over again. My maternal grandmother and mother were Sunday School teachers. I was the kid with the awkward questions because as I read that book things that made no sense to me just sort of popped out at me, as they do in any other reading. There were so many inconsistencies and I'd ask about them in classes. It is why I could never be a literal fundamentalist nor do I understand how anyone else could be either. Just begin at the beginning. There were Adam, Eve, Cain and Abel. Cain killed Abel and was exiled with his wife. His who? Where did SHE come from? It wasn't long before I was forbidden to ask questions in Sunday School classes. :^)

But that didn't mean the questions stopped. For one thing, there is too much "order" in the natural world for me to believe it simply an accident. I mean, how is it that pi (an infinite number) r squared ALWAYS yield the exact circumference of any size finite circle? As I grew I read the real thing, cover to cover, word for word, several times. Some great stories but they don't hold together for an inquisitive mind. But, at the same time, I always "knew" there was something more. I went through philosophy, history, astronomy but I couldn't sell atheism to myself either. I delved into New Age writings and authors, found more truth, for me, there, but still notthing that sated me, explained my own life to me. Like I said, I felt, knew there was something more. And as my page explains, I found that, not easily, but I did. Something that works for me. Maybe that is the journey we all come here to have. I've had three completely inexplicable things happen in my life that fuel the "knowing" and I've a website that explains that - it is there to find another who has experienced what I did - and in 14 years of specific searching I have yet to find even one, though it gets a ton of traffic. So I introduced myself here on my profile as "spiritual, not religious in any sense". And it turns in THAT, I am not alone. I don't think that an accident either but more of an evolution. I guess I think "religion" is evolving too. Though some, as always, are kicking up their heels and dragging their feet, the fundamentalists who think the world was formed in 6 days, 6,000 years ago and that humans and dinosaurs coexisted for example. They are a step, or several thousand, behind the truth of who we are and what we are doing here. I think.

That's the beauty of freedom though - we can all think for ourselves, formulate our own truth, our own ethos and live by the covenants we make with ourselves. Personally, I like to start with one medicine thinks it discovered, but I think existed before the Universe did, First, Do No Harm - from there we are on our own. I believe in the inherent goodness of humanity and marvel at the ease with which some selfish men, those who founded all religions and wrote the manuals as well, persuaded so many of us that only they had the truth or the ability to speak to our creator. I think life, the potential for it, is hardcoded into every particle in existence in this relative universe, we all were, in truth, first cooked in a star, every atom of our being. So, yes, I believe there is a Creator, but not one who hates, orders killings, or really does anything but give us the gift of life and then sets us free like a mama bird to find our way in this universe. I believe we have as many opportunities as we wish in an infinite existence to experience all that is possible to experience here. Happy and sad. How can we know one without knowing the other? That is one of the ideas I came across in my readings - through a couple books, the infinite is where we come from, infinity is always expressed as a triune truth, sort of that circle I guess, but here in the relative universe, we come veiled, one part of us hidden from the other two in order that we might have this experience as it is not as actors on a stage, because there is no script and we are not actors. We are spirits having a physical experience. In the relative universe we know what things are at last partially by what they are not. Hot - cold, for instance, we know the extremes and we can measure the gradients between them on a straight line, not an infinite circle, but two extremes with steps between them, love-hate, here-there, you-me. Like that. But, still I know there is more, there is a curtain behind which we cannot see from here, but behind which we go when we leave here. This satisfies my yearning, explains much of my life, and leaves me spiritual, not religious. :^)
 

Lois Jordan (55)
Monday November 26, 2012, 2:08 pm
So the "nones" are up to 23%....just a few weeks ago I read it was 20%...we seem to be growing by leaps and bounds. Yes, we are a diverse group. Not being able to count myself as either atheist or agnostic, and not believing in a "Supreme Being," but believing in an "afterlife" puts me in a group within a group. Proudly raised all my kids this way...same for grandkids. They're a bunch of happy, giving, sharing, morally upright people who know the difference between fairytales and reality. None of us are buying any of those books,either.
 

Scarlett P. (126)
Monday November 26, 2012, 2:14 pm
God is not a superstition, He is our creator... Yours and mind... without Him there would be nothing... You actually think everything started from nothing and just continued to evolve into all you see around you today... All the planets hang perfect, rotating around each other perfectly because they we created from nothing... Sun rises and sets giving us day and night, because it was created from nothing?? The ocean just comes so far on the beach because it started from nothing... Everything grows because it started from nothing.. Really Kit??? LOL... God spoke and it all came to be.. So simple yet so true and man thinks he has God figured out... Hmmm... Think again....
 

Kit B. (277)
Monday November 26, 2012, 2:41 pm

In the words of Sinclair Lewis: “When fascism comes to America, it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying the cross.”

Neither myself nor any one else has ever tried to convince you Scarlett that you are wrong. Believe as you wish, just allow that same freedom to everyone. If you bothered to be in any way familiar with science all of those questions are easy to answer. I have offered you many answers in the past, as have others. Answers that deal with solid fact, and yet do not interfere with your choice of gods.

No one said at any time that it comes from nothing. I care not to attempt to figure out your god nor reasons for belief. That is simply a choice a personal private choice. I respect your right to have that choice.
 

Joseph G. Paquette (1)
Monday November 26, 2012, 3:52 pm
Noted, signed, & twitter entry made
 

Bonita Annis (20)
Monday November 26, 2012, 3:52 pm
Liked this article Kit...Very Much...
 

Tom Edgar (56)
Monday November 26, 2012, 4:03 pm
It is impossible to convince people such as Scarlett as their minds are totally closed. She argues against the concept that the universes started from nothing then says God did just that, but can't say from whence came her particular God, not once has any theist ever produced a single piece of replicable, verifiable, evidence to support their theories that a Magician amaterialised from nowhere, then produced the billions of galaxies with their billions of suns and multi billions of planets all from nothing. Yes Scarlett, THINK AGAIN but this time think,.
 

Gloria H. (88)
Monday November 26, 2012, 4:26 pm
I consider myself spiritual and go to a metaphysical "church". Yeah, in a real old church building. I believe in Christ principles, but not consider myself "Christian" in the way of "believers" whose one way is the only way. I feel there are many paths. My ancestors were missionaries, and I am the black sheep that ran off from "the fold". And guess what? The grass is definately greener! Yum!
 

Kathleen Tyson (2)
Monday November 26, 2012, 4:52 pm
This article really hit home for me.
Having been raised in a very strict "Christian" home,I've felt guilty now and then for no longer sttending church
But I realized religiosity and spirituality are two very different things.
Who says we need a building to worship our"higher power"?
I pray while i'm walking, while i'm laying in bed,although taught that kneeling was a way of showing hunility.
I find that being in my garden,looking at nature hearing the sound of laughter or the cry of a gull flying overhead can bring me such inner peace.
All we need to is look around us to see the incredible gifts we've been given in the beauty of leaves on a tree after a rain storm,the nurturing of a mother with it's newborn, human and animal.
Thank you for this article.
 

Rose NoFWDSPLZ (264)
Monday November 26, 2012, 5:12 pm
Loved this Kit Thank you
 

Zee Kallah (39)
Monday November 26, 2012, 7:08 pm
I'm one of the "Spiritual not religious". Actually, I call myself a seeker. I seek to know Creatoras he really is and I sure don't find much of Creator in the church.

Yahshua (Jesus) was also a "Spiritual not religious". He got crucified for it. Very much an activist, standing up against the religious authorities, insulting them for their behavior, making them look like fools and don't forget, he set the temple animals free!.

Yep, the only people he criticized heartlessly were the religious leaders. He loved the "people" and they loved him.

And he got resurrected with 100s of witnesses.

Our churches today, for the most part, are as religious as they were in Yahshua's (Jesus day,) He took the whip to them. lol
 

JL A. (269)
Monday November 26, 2012, 7:47 pm
I am choosing to play devil's advocate here Kit. Your sentence with ".....it is interesting Pam that those who make a choice to live without any formal religion still care about the planet, about the needs..." I would suggest that while the statement is clearly true for some, it is not true for all who make a choice to live without any formal religion care about the planet or the needs of those who have less or take any of the actions you list.
 

Kit B. (277)
Monday November 26, 2012, 8:16 pm

True enough J L. It is also true that many Christians make the choice to not walk the path of Jesus nor attempt to love their brothers or sisters. Of those I know, few that fall into the group of non-believers are just hypocrites. Whereas, I just can not say the same for those who claim to be Christian but lack the will or deep belief to follow through by acting as they speak. Maybe the first and most important step for all of us is acceptance of those who chose to walk a separate path, whether that is a believer or those who call themselves spiritual or maybe just those who walk with no belief system. We can all be good decent humans, if we chose that.
 

JL A. (269)
Monday November 26, 2012, 8:32 pm
Cannot resist saying Amen to that Kit...and to continue devil's advocacy, the person who takes no position cannot be held accountable in the same way to one who has embraced a position or faith and thus we hesitate to call them hypocrites since they never agreed to be or do other than whatever it is we would prefer otherwise.
 

Kit B. (277)
Monday November 26, 2012, 8:40 pm

To those who take no position - I say "What a cop-out on life". Believe what you find the best way to walk through this life, but to straddle fences gains no respect.
 

Julie W. (20)
Tuesday November 27, 2012, 2:47 am
That fits me - 'spiritual but not religious'. One big difference between me and anyone who is deeply religious is that I don't make any claims to know the truth . I can only state what I believe, and keep on searching.
 

Mary Donnelly (44)
Tuesday November 27, 2012, 3:40 pm
Great post and comments Kit. I agree with Sinclair Lewis.
 

Marilyn L. (106)
Tuesday November 27, 2012, 3:51 pm
I feel there is something bigger than us all...perhaps that's our connectiveness to each other and the Universe. I know I stopped believing in a man-God in the sky about 6 years old and have never looked back.

It seems to me however that this change we are seeing is perhaps part evolution and part more understanding of quantum physics.and also the realization that people are/were believing in a God that was created thousands of years ago by men, for men and men who's knowledge of the world was minimal compared to what we know today.

BTW Scarlett P. I don't think anyone wants to take your right away to believe what you want or even convince you that you are wrong. We just want the same respect to believe something different or nothing at all. What we know for sure is religion does not make one a good person but we have seen it use for evil acts.
 

Yvonne White (232)
Tuesday November 27, 2012, 4:44 pm
You can't argue with a "true-believer", fanatics of any religion are dangerously religious...especially those whose beliefs bear little resemblence to their professed religion. I've come to believe that Religion is the root of all evil. ..but I imagine my goddess would disagree..;)
 

Zee Kallah (39)
Tuesday November 27, 2012, 7:00 pm
I agree that Religion is evil.

Individual relationships with Creator can be most beneficial but once that relationship becomes a magnet to draw people into it's INDIVIDUAL relationship values and morals, there's trouble brewing. Stakes are being prepared for the martyrdom of not agreeing with those who grabbed the religion for power and money. These entrepreneurs fleece the sheep and none of the constituents dare baaa. Or, in these modern days, they're simply treated with scorn and possibly ousted from the church. Further the belief system of that personal relationship will be so tangled and muddied, it won't be recognizable.

I think the greatest insult to Creator, who loves diversity, is to form a religion that puts all the blame on him. The churches have this thing about you MUST OBEY. For hell's sake, don't think. Did Yahshua (Jesus) never called Jesus a day in his life!, did Yahshua obey his church's authorities. Hell no. He made fools of them and gave the greatest insult those authorities could be given in that time. He called them "whited sepulchers full of dead men's bones." And the 1% could not shut him up. They tried crucifixion and that didn't work either. I'd have loved to have seen their faces when he showed up at the synagogue the next week! ROFLOL

Did Paul obey the disciples who were the authorities of the burgeoning new religion? Hell no. He bragged about "withstanding Peter to his face."

ROFLOL when I hear Christians advising others to "be like Jesus What Would Jesus Do?" Those sheepies sure better be careful where and when they act like Yahshua (Jesus). You let a young man about 30 years old walk into most churches and start giving a different interpretation of their theology and calling the pastors hypocrits, and there would be a deacon on each side of the activist walking him right out the door. Probably call the police! when they'd rather stone him like they tried to stone Yahshua.

Sometimes the religions get twined together, such as Christianity and paganism. Christmas and Easter are both pagan holidays. And do you know what the name Jesus means? His name was Yahshua not Jesus.
Jesus is Greek for son of Zeus (highest god in Greek pagan religion).

I have a personal relationship with Creator. But it's sure not like other folks "relationships". And I'd better not talk about it too much or some entrepreneur might grab it and try to make a religion out of it. Hell no!
 

Kit B. (277)
Tuesday November 27, 2012, 7:32 pm

Your goddess does agree with you, Yvonne. I should know. (personal joke) Though religions does not have to be evil, it could be a quiet personal belief, neither right nor wrong.
 

bob m. (32)
Tuesday November 27, 2012, 7:34 pm


but of course; its' all so clearly as simple as pie.... as clear as the mote in beggars eye.. of hobbits and trolls and wraiths and ringbearers ...my wonder is how it's needful at all..whilst the madding crowd moans.....trilling...Oh my aching runes tunes.
 

Kit B. (277)
Tuesday November 27, 2012, 7:37 pm

Thank you Mister Tolkin...
 

Kit B. (277)
Tuesday November 27, 2012, 7:39 pm


Tolkien
 

MJ M. (494)
Tuesday November 27, 2012, 8:39 pm
Religious faith is the one species of human ignorance that will not admit of even the possibility of correction.

We must find our way to a time when faith, without evidence, disgraces anyone who would claim it.
 

bob m. (32)
Tuesday November 27, 2012, 8:58 pm


When the flame burns blue in remembrance of you; of sorrows and tears and loves lost gains through;
then the fires burn hot and red in dying ..in fallings and failure and hopes cold cold rainbows in a january storms' eye.....I....
And the green glow ..and golden hues in wakenings ; beginnings anew ..warm embraces in watchings as young hearts bring forth .. joyful spring babes in turn...
And white hairs applenty.. cover the tips of the flowers of pleasures rekindled as the angels sing HOLY ..HOLY ..HOLY with the pure in kind Graces.. who are worshippers in the blaze....adieu.
Behold all things are made new.
 

Tom Edgar (56)
Wednesday November 28, 2012, 1:00 am
M J M Amen.
 

Sheri J. (16)
Thursday November 29, 2012, 7:57 pm
I'm spiritual, not religious, therefore, this is my kind of church!
 

Marie Therese Hanulak (30)
Friday November 30, 2012, 6:39 am
The human race is evolving.
Many of us have started to think for ourselves.
In some far away future, superstitions will have been left behind.
 

Marie Therese Hanulak (30)
Friday November 30, 2012, 6:56 am
Scarlette you're just parroting what you've been told.
If god existed we would not need faith to believe in him, we would know.
BELEIVING ISN'T KNOWING.
Just because there are forces in the universe that we don't yet understand does not make it okay to lump them all in one created identity and shove it down everyone throat.
Some of us prefer to think for ourselves.
 

Camila K. (141)
Friday November 30, 2012, 3:45 pm
I concur with you Marie T. Religion has been used to control the masses, as Karl Marx expressed so well when he called it the opiate of the masses. Maybe that's part of the reason why the Right wing cries against him so much....? I respect religious teachings that bring children to understand that there is a spiritual world we can't see (yet) and the values all religions share about goodness being better than badness, doing unto others as others do unto you, loving one another, etc. I and most of those of us who have broken away from religions have done so because of the hypocrisies within the teachings we received, as in being "born in sin" and never being enough somehow. These negative teachings are the problem for those who strive so hard to be good and find its never enough, while the teachers themselves are found abusing their stations.
The truth for me, for now, is that there is a spiritual realm that is not of this 3D reality we are all in, suffering terrible wars and egoic strivings for money and power. As I have grown in understanding, I have also experienced things that cannot be explained in 3D understandings that most are stuck within (especially the religious ones).
What is ironic is that those who most seek God through their teachings are turning in the wrong direction, waiting and struggling with details that don't matter while God is actually just outside of their peripheriphal vision, and within their own hearts.
The places where spirituality and religion blend is where the heart is. Open the heart and you will know God.

Quantum physics and mystical teachings are virtually the same by the way. There's a great little book called The Mystic and the Physicist by Lawrence Leshan. If you have a chance, its an oldie but goodie, and since then physics has gotten even more mystical. By the way, who do you think created physics and all science if it wasn't the great Creator anyway? All is Oneness, all is just God because God is just another word for Love/Truth/Beauty/plus all the other great words for the Oneness, including Music.

bob m. that's beautiful what you wrote. God is Poetry too.

Just opening to possibility without fear of sin or being guilty for enjoying LIFE will help.....but the religious are so stuck in boxes of torment, all my words are probably falling on deaf ears. Oh well, Love is compassionate. In time, all will know the Truth even if it takes eternities.

Even if there is no God, love and sharing is so much easier and sweeter, if nothing else, than hatred and warring with one another. If there is a devil, wouldn't he be laughing at all who argue and fight for a few dollars, even a trillion? What good is all the wealth that can't be taken with you when you die anyway?





 
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