The God pill

Sherman said:
It wasn’t until the protestant reformation that ordinary people were able to read the Bible.
The Bible had been translated in full into Slavonic, Czech, Greek, Aramaic, English, Hungarian, and Latin; as well as portions of it into various other languages by the time the Reformation started. Although given the difficulty of printing most people were unable to obtain a copy.

Sherman said:
I think at the deepest level the two approaches are pointing to the same unknowable truth using language which is always extremely inadequate to explain the ultimate concern. Words are not the truth. Words are pointers to the truth.

It's very true that words are merely pointers to the truth, but there are large differences between the teachings of Christianity and Buddhism that are more than just words. While there are many moral and philosophical similarities, there are serious dogmatic differences. To a Christian, there is nothing in our faith deeper than the triune God, which is not part of the Buddhist religion.
 

NoMoreTO

Hummingbird
Catholic
Buddhism actually came up in a conversation, I think that

Buddha learned about suffering in a natural law way, and it is a universal truth.
In Christianity, our view of suffering is physical and real, provided by Jesus Christs' divine presence in coming to the Earth as a Man.

The greeks were able to reach the Existence of God through logic alone. The three wise men knew there was a saviour coming, even within their non Judaic religions by the stars I suppose. In Christianity our view of God is much more enhanced and in the form of the Trinity. Inspired by Divine revelation.

Budhism in my mind revealed a Truth, as best as could be understood in that epoch. There were also other Truth seekers before Christ, and people who are able to obtain some level of Truth via philosophy, meditation, natural phenomena such as stars etc.
 

Kid Twist

 
Banned
There are seeds of truth in many things around the world, and (right, proper, correct) they can point to the Truth about the universe: A person, who we call Jesus of Nazareth.

By the way, it should be noted that we suffer because of our condition of being descendants of Adam and being born into a created/material world where we tend to do things (sin) that also increase our suffering. But Christ's suffering was voluntary.
 
Kid Twist said:
By the way, it should be noted that we suffer because of our condition of being descendants of Adam and being born into a created/material world where we tend to do things (sin) that also increase our suffering. But Christ's suffering was voluntary.

I wish I could remember what lecture it was in, but I remember seeing a Jordan Peterson video a while back where he said something like, "As humans we suffer constantly. If you or someone you know isn't suffering horribly in the next five years, you're extraordinarily lucky. The Christian God displayed his love for man by choosing to become one of us and voluntarily suffering the cruelest torments imaginable. Is it any wonder that's who our society has chosen to worship?"

Of course he was looking at as just a mythological fairy tale, but like Tolkien we know that it's true mythology. Our God didn't just create us and watch from above; he showed us he was willing to endure life as a human, even the worst kind of suffering. No way Zeus or Appolo or Adonis would've done that.
 

Kid Twist

 
Banned
Indeed, and it is precisely that He shows us that this suffering is part the path that ends in defeating the final enemy, death.

St. Basil said it wonderfully in his liturgy,

"Descending into Hades through the cross, that He might fill all things with Himself, He loosed the bonds of death. He rose on the third day, having opened a path for all flesh to the resurrection from the dead, since it was not possible that the Author of life would be dominated by corruption. So He became the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep, the first born of the dead, that He might be Himself the first in all things."
 

Diocletian

Woodpecker
Catholic
Vladimir Poontang said:
Church isn't for me, and the bible is way too complicated. I'm not going to confuse myself or get involved in organized religion.

As for doing something, I'm all out of ideas. I've got nothing. Honestly nothing at all. I'm as stuck as anyone can be.

There are thousands of resources freely available online that can help you understand the Old and New Testament.

Organized religion helps precisely because it is organized. It gives you a community, a sense of belonging, and other people you can turn to when you need help or guidance. That sense of belonging and fellowship is what a lot of people search for to provide meaning to their lives. These organized religions can also help your understanding of the Bible because you have other people to discuss it with.

What problems are you trying to solve? You might try breaking down what exactly it is you need to fix about yourself and initially focus on the easier things and as you start making gains work on the others.
 

NoMoreTO

Hummingbird
Catholic
I had never thought of an Angel like this, but I suppose I had thought of an angel sometimes as a ball of light so to speak. So perhaps this presentation is out there too.

I know sometimes there are people amongst us who are angels. But this is different. Thoughts as to accuracy? Can both hold true ?

 

Tail Gunner

Hummingbird
Gold Member
NoMoreTO said:
I had never thought of an Angel like this, but I suppose I had thought of an angel sometimes as a ball of light so to speak. So perhaps this presentation is out there too.

I know sometimes there are people amongst us who are angels. But this is different. Thoughts as to accuracy? Can both hold true ?

Ezekiel 1 discusses "living creatures," not angels. A number of people in the Bible beheld angels, which were an awe-inspiring sight. They did not look like this description. Gee whiz, just sit down and read Ezekiel 1, instead of reading what other people are saying about it.
 

infowarrior1

Peacock
Protestant
NoMoreTO said:
I had never thought of an Angel like this, but I suppose I had thought of an angel sometimes as a ball of light so to speak. So perhaps this presentation is out there too.

I know sometimes there are people amongst us who are angels. But this is different. Thoughts as to accuracy? Can both hold true ?




Daniel 10:4-14
4On the twenty-fourth day of the first month, as I was standing on the bank of the great river, the Tigris, 5I lifted up my eyes, and behold, there was a certain man dressed in linen, with a belt of fine gold from Uphaz around his waist. 6His body was like beryl, his face like the brilliance of lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of polished bronze, and his voice like the sound of a multitude.

7Only I, Daniel, saw the vision; the men with me did not see it, but a great terror fell upon them, and they ran and hid themselves.

8So I was left alone, gazing at this great vision. No strength remained in me; my face grew deathly pale, and I was powerless. 9I heard the sound of his words, and as I listened, I fell into a deep sleep, with my face to the ground.

10Suddenly, a hand touched me and set me trembling on my hands and knees. 11He said to me, “Daniel, you are a man who is highly precious. Consider carefully the words that I am about to say to you. Stand up, for I have now been sent to you.”

And when he had said this to me, I stood up trembling.

12“Do not be afraid, Daniel,” he said, “for from the first day that you purposed to understand and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them. 13However, the prince of the kingdom of Persia opposed me for twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I had been left there with the kings of Persia. 14Now I have come to explain to you what will happen to your people in the latter days, for the vision concerns those days.”

Some people think this is the Angel of the LORD as in the pre-incarnate Christ. But God wouldn't have any trouble opposing the angelic powers of the earth such that he would require the help of Michael the Chief Prince.

Therefore this is a powerful angel delivering the message from God yet weaker than Michael.


So a real angel will probably have a body of bronze. And eyes that glow like lights. And he will be bright like lightning like the Angels at Jesus' Tomb. And he doesn't appear to have any wings either.

If one really wants an accurate description of Angels in terms of description.
 
Orthodox iconography sometimes depicts angels in a similar manner:
ophanim-_johnbaptist_church_kratovo_macedona.jpg


Each choir of angels is painted differently; these are Thrones.

Edit: This article shows the different types.
 

Sherman

Ostrich
Orthodox Inquirer
I have been meditating since the 1990s, and have had some insights from my meditations into the nature of reality, science and religion.

We are limited by what we know about the world which we can only see through our five senses. It is like we are looking through a straw. We can barely sense the world, but what we sense is enough to keep us alive. By extension, science is also limited by the five senses, and can only come to conclusions based on this limited input. The senses are magnified by instruments, but still of the same quality and having the same limitations.

Furthermore, science ultimately only comes to conclusions about abstractions, and not reality itself. Physics, for example, is numerical equations where variables are defined and numbers assigned. Science means that there is an ability to predict ahead of time the number of a variable based on the inputs from instruments (magnified senses). Even, an atom is ultimately an abstraction. Kant was right. We never see reality itself.

Science is the best source of true knowledge within the realm of the five senses. However, as humans, we are conscious. Consciousness appears to have the ability to sense aspects of reality not available to the five external senses. Science is objective. Religion is a subjective science. Truths are obtained through the study of consciousness itself.

Why can’t scientists perceive the legitimacy of religion? Because they are disassociated from their feelings. Dissociation is a psychological defense mechanism where a person becomes emotionally detached from their feelings . This is the typical defense of the intellectual who is always in his head. It is a defense against suffering. But the path to true spiritual awakening only comes through the experience of suffering and searching for a solution. Dissociation is a defense mechanism that guards the ego from suffering. A scientist, trapped in his thoughts and disconnected from his feelings, can make life tolerable enough to avoid the intense suffering that leads to awakening.
 

Rigsby

Pelican
Gold Member
I went and sat on that seat again and honoured the dead at my local Church.

Big building.

Crescent Moon.

Made me realise how far I'd come.

Still not that much closer to God, but reaching out.

Very calm being among the dead. Wondering about their life.

Most of them so old now that no one is even still alive that would remember them. Truly gone.

Can't even see the date they died because the rain has washed it off their stone.

It will be nearly two years now, very soon...

How time passes...
 

Glaucon

Ostrich
Gold Member
Victor Pride aka Bold and determined just went all in:

https://boldanddetermined.com/let-it-be-known/

Let it be known that I, Nickolas, a reformed sinner, and bondservant of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, have been saved by the blood of our blessed Lord Jesus. Let it be known that I do hereby declare that I will no longer operate in commerce under the nom de guerre Victor Pride. Let it be known that from this date forward I use my Christian name alone. Let it be known that I renounce any article, podcast, or video et al which has blasphemed God. Let it be known that I renounce any such material which does not glorify our Lord and Savior. Let it be known that I do hereby repent all transgressions against God. Let it be known that I, Nickolas, do hereby announce that I am a living sacrifice for the Lord Jesus Christ and I renounce my own will and declare to do only the perfect will of the Lord. Let it be known that Jesus Christ is Lord. Let it be known, now and forever, that Jesus Christ loves us, died for us, and brought us everlasting life. Written and declared at Asuncion on the twenty-ninth day of February, in the year of the incarnation of our Lord two thousand and twenty. Signed in the blood of Jesus Christ.

-Nickolas


I wish him the best.
 

Enhanced Eddie

Pelican
Orthodox Inquirer
Gold Member
Roosh said:
Discussing meditation or other secular strategies does not belong in this thread.

Isn't Buddhist meditation spiritual (as opposed to the secular "transcendental meditation" for example)?

And isn't it in principle the same thing as the Christian "prayer of quiet", which is particularly common in the Orthodox Church?

JLP taught it on youtube a while back:


From "The Science of Enlightenment" by Shinzen Young (inb4 yeah he's a tractor... but is the following factually inaccurate?)

Most Christians don’t have a clue that members of their religious tradition actively cultivated meditative states at some point in the past. If you were to ask even well-informed Christians the technical term within their religion for a state wherein the mind becomes highly focused, most wouldn’t know what to tell you. But these terms do exist and reflect what was once a rich tradition of cultivated concentration.

According to the Catholic Church, there are two kinds of prayer. The first type of prayer is what most people today usually think about when they hear the word “prayer”: creating words and images in the mind, and feelings in the body about God. We talk to God, we think about God, we feel an emotional connection to God. This type of prayer is known technically as discursive prayer, meaning prayer in the nature of a discourse or a conversation. The second type of prayer is called nondiscursive prayer or the prayer of quiet. In this type of prayer, we go into a state of very deep peace and high concentration that is without words. Prayer of quiet (hesychia in Greek) is, roughly speaking, the Christian term for samadhi.

Another term for high concentration in Christianity is recollection. This word does not mean “to remember” as it does in modern English. Rather, it means “to gather back together,” in other words, to become concentrated. We gather the scattered mind; we “re-collect” it. In fact, a Catholic priest is required to become recollected for at least one moment, even if he can’t be recollected in his daily life. That moment is when he consecrates the host. In former times, great numbers of Christians wanted not just sporadic moments of recollection but to be able to live their entire lives in the recollected state. That led to the development of monasteries.

If you’re familiar with European history, you probably know that at one time monasteries dominated the landscape of Europe. Only a fraction of those have survived. Most were destroyed by wars and revolutions. What were those monasteries used for? In essence, they were the meditation centers of the medieval world. The monastic system of Europe was founded by Saint Benedict. According to the Benedictine tradition, the main reason for entering the monastery is to attain a habitually concentrated state (recollectio) and to use that to radically transform one’s self (conversio). A monastery is like a giant feedback mechanism where a person’s life is simplified, and there is nothing to do but concentration-building activities like simple physical labor, chanting, prayer, and so on. Before the Counter-Reformation (in the sixteenth century), obtaining the prayer of quiet was deemed central to European Christian life. It’s still central in the Eastern Orthodox form of Christianity.

There are perhaps three works that best exemplify the Christian meditative tradition. The Interior Castle of Saint Teresa of Avila, who was a Spanish Carmelite nun, is useful because she analyzes the prayer of quiet into a series of well-defined levels. It makes it easy to see the different benchmarks along that continuum and how they rather roughly line up with the standard Buddhist system of eight or nine “absorptions.” Another book is called the Cloud of Unknowing, by an anonymous fourteenth-century English author, which gives a very beautiful poetic description of the meditative process. Finally, there are the writings of Meister Eckhart, a thirteenth-century Dominican. Eckhart’s writings went unnoticed for many centuries, but he is now appreciated as among the greatest Christian mystics.
 

NoMoreTO

Hummingbird
Catholic
Enhanced Eddie said:
Roosh said:
Discussing meditation or other secular strategies does not belong in this thread.

Isn't Buddhist meditation spiritual (as opposed to the secular "transcendental meditation" for example)?

And isn't it in principle the same thing as the Christian "prayer of quiet", which is particularly common in the Orthodox Church?

Buddhists empty themselves out for its' own sake. Just to be empty of noise.

....Its half way there...

Christians empty themselves and ask to be filled with Christs' love and his will.

This is my understanding of silent prayer, it is to be silent to hear the voice of God or to be close to God. Not to simply relish the silence.
 

Wutang

Hummingbird
Gold Member
I don't think it's a coincidence that a lot of the biggest promoters of the sort of mediation that Sherman is talking about tend to be people who are not only secular but actively hostile against Christianity.
 
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