Showing posts with label Truth. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Truth. Show all posts

Saturday, May 16, 2020

Who can you accept as an authority figure?

Jeff, you wrote >>  In general, how is one supposed to distinguish an acceptable authority figure form those we are are to reject? <<.

Interestingly, Jesus has an answer when asked the same question. Jesus said, "By their fruit you will know them."

Or as I like to say, quoting my own authority, "The proof is in the pudding."

Another  quote you can take to the bank is "How is that working for ya?"

Unitarian Univeralists covenant together to affirm and promote seven principles the fourth of which is "the free and responsible search for truth and meaning."

The ultimate authority is, of course, one's own conscience assuming one's conscience is "informed" and authentic. People we have learned from cognitive science are subject to "confimation bias." So doubt is the spice of life even doubt of your own beliefs.

So when I suggest questioning authority, I am including one's own, but as Plutonius says in Shakespeare's play, Hamlet, "above all esle to thine own self be true."

As Socrates said, the hallmark of a wise person is knowing what they don't know. So, another one of my guiding principles is "Don't believe your own bullshit because it paves the well to hell."


Sunday, November 24, 2019

Sunday Sermon - The Truth will set you free.

Luke 23:35-43 The Message (MSG)

34-35 Jesus prayed, “Father, forgive them; they don’t know what they’re doing.”
Dividing up his clothes, they threw dice for them. The people stood there staring at Jesus, and the ringleaders made faces, taunting, “He saved others. Let’s see him save himself! The Messiah of God—ha! The Chosen—ha!”
36-37 The soldiers also came up and poked fun at him, making a game of it. They toasted him with sour wine: “So you’re King of the Jews! Save yourself!”
38 Printed over him was a sign: this is the king of the jews.
39 One of the criminals hanging alongside cursed him: “Some Messiah you are! Save yourself! Save us!”
40-41 But the other one made him shut up: “Have you no fear of God? You’re getting the same as him. We deserve this, but not him—he did nothing to deserve this.”
42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you enter your kingdom.”
43 He said, “Don’t worry, I will. Today you will join me in paradise.”
Today's gospel reminds me of Donald Trump putting down and smearing the truth tellers at the impeachment hearings.
Trump's Republican defenders join in the sneering with Nunes and Jordon being the worst, but all the Republicans got in their licks.
Adam Schiff and many others, trying to get to the bottom of things for the American people, get attacked, mocked, villified, bullied, and made fun of.
The Repubicans and their supporters have no fear of God, or maybe deep down they fear punishment and vengeance, otherwise why would they behave as they do?
The impeachment hearings have become a major morality play being performed in the front of the American people and the world. And in light of today's gospel WWJD, What would Jesus do?
Jesus would calmly take it all in and not judge and nor condemn. Jesus would forgive and for those who acknowledge their sins, and accept forgiveness, they would join him in paradise. But for those who don't and continue to be bitter, resentful, scared, and attack, they are already in their own hell and it will continue until they chose otherwise.
The story of the crucifixion is not about a man being murdered by the State as much as the Truth being butchered, mocked, belittled, subject to extinguishing by the powers that be. But the Truth cannot die because the Truth is that which is. The Truth can be ignored, defamed, distorted, denied, but it cannot be killed. You might think that we humans would have learned this lesson by now. However we are too self serving, too self deceptive, too arrogant, to acknowledge the Truth even when it is apparent before us.
The lesson of Jesus' crucifixion is not about blood sacrifice as so many Christians insist. As the Universalists know, God does not require nor want sacrifice. What God wants is the acknowledgement of Truth for without it we are consigned to hell and with it we enter into heaven.
The Truth will set us free, the whole Truth, and nothing but the Truth, but there are those who are afraid of the Truth and they create a living hell in our midst. Jesus shows us that the way to deal with deceit and injustice is to forgive for Jesus is quoted as saying, "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do."
This Thanksgiving as families gather there will be plenty of forgiveness opportunities. There is no need to defend and argue for the Truth for if you have accepted Truth into  your heart, you will already be free.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Are you ready for the Truth?

Unitarian Universalists covenant together to affirm and promote the free and responsible search for truth and meaning. The question for UUs is that the truth with a small t or a capital T?

We are all called to be teachers of God. Whether we are aware of it or not, we are all constantly teaching by how we behave not by what we say. Stephen Gaskin said that, in the last analysis, all we have to offer another human being is our own state of being. So what state of being is your being in?

The Truth with a capital T will set us free. We are so easily enamored with our truths, small T, that we often don't become aware of the Truth with a capital T. For those of us who are aware of the Truth with a capital T, it is incumbent on us to share it. As Pope John Paul II said, "Never impose, always propose."

And so it is up to us, the Truth tellers, to propose the Truth with enthusiasm, energy, and joy. The Truth of Existence is always fun, enlightening, invigorating, and generous.

It is up to Truth to change the world, not the world to change the Truth. Many small truths don't make things right. Truth is found in right mindedness and truths are found in wrong mindedness.

Often, my truth is not the same as the Truth. The Truth is to be found on the path of the spirit which means we have to leave the path of the ego. Jesus tells the rich young man that if he would enter the Kingdom he would need to sell all his possessions, give the money to the poor, and come follow Him. It was too  much for the young man. He became sad and walked away. He, unfortunately, was not yet ready for the Truth.

Truth which is everything and when we are in our right mind costs us nothing. It is free for the asking and taking. However in our wrong mind, the Truth appears to be very, very costly.

The Truth does not change or disappear. It is always there waiting for us to recognize it and accept it. When will be the time for you?

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Has secular noise overwhelmed the silence of sanity?

Unitarian Universalists covenant together to affirm and promote the free and responsible search for truth and meaning. Unfortunately, they focus all too often on the truth with a small t instead of the Truth with a capital T.

Robert Barron says, "The secular establishment always prefers Christians who are vacillating, unsure, divided, and altogether eager to privatize their religion. That's the kind of Christianity the regular culture likes:utterly privatized, hidden away, harmless." p.107, To Light A Fire On The Earth.

In our contemporary culture, postmodernist philosophy teaches that truth is a social construction. Truth, small t, is a social construction, relative, situational, a figment of human beings creations on the path of the ego. However, Truth, capital T is about spiritual laws and this Truth is absolute and not of the making of human beings. One truth is found on the path of wrong-mindedness, and the Truth is found on the path of right mindedness.

In our secular world, no distinction is made between truth and Truth. This distinction requires a level of wisdom and understanding that most modern people don't understand. This lack of understanding generates much anxiety and fear. It is written in A Course In Miracles, "You have every reason to feel afraid as you perceive yourself. This is why you cannot escape from fear until you realize that you did not and could not create yourself." T-3.IV.3:8-9

The spiritual path is not about intelligence, knowledge, creeds, belief systems, etc. Spirituality is not cognitive. In order to ascend on the spiritual path one must "lose one's mind." As St. Paul writes, we have to become "fools" for Christ. True spirituality is a return to child-like innocence wondering at the Oneness of existence.

People on the  path of the ego don't want to hear about the Truth. It scares them. It means they would have to detach from the things that they think will make them happy. This is too much. The young man asks Jesus how to get to the kingdom and Jesus tells him to sell all he has, give the money to the poor, and come follow me, and the young man walks away sad.

People on the path of the ego who worship all kinds of idols don't want to hear about the Truth, they just want the Truth tellers to go away, shut their mouths, and keep their understandings to themselves. Unfortunately, they has happened more and more as the secular noise overwhelms the silence of sanity.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

What do you find most true, most beautiful, most good?

Roman Catholicism has described truth, beauty, and goodness as the "transcendentals." Unitarian Universalism often relies on the transcendentalists as prophetic women and men who have contributed to the living tradition of UU. In the pursuit of truth and meaning, paths into the true, beautiful, and good have provided sustenance for the search and journey.

Psychotherapists focus on the three aspects of the human personality: thoughts, feelings, and behavior. In the world of values we name truth, beauty, and goodness as the pivotal touchstones of our consciousnesses. These values correspond to the aspects of the personality: our thoughts desire truth, our feelings desire beauty, and our behavior desires goodness.

When we apply this trinity to the spiritual life we can wonder: what is truth, what is beauty, and what is goodness? What are the circumstances and factors that contribute to experiencing these three qualities?

It is the pursuit of the truth, beauty, and goodness that comprises the spiritual life and the life worth living. Wherein do these three qualities lie?

In my life, my truth is found in _____________________________.

In my life, beauty is most intensely experienced in ____________________________.

In my life, goodness is found in ________________________________.

In other words, what is the most important truth for you? What is the most beautiful for you? What is the most good that you appreciate most?

Saturday, June 16, 2018

What is the Truth?

Unitarian Universalists covenant together to affirm and promote the free and responsible search for truth and meaning.Where does the sought for Truth lie? Where is it to be found? Like love, perhaps UU in looking in all the wrong places.

Osho says that the Truth can't be divided into fragments. Either you get the whole of it or nothing. There is no little bit or only part of it.

The whole, as Aristotle said, is greater than the sum of the parts. That's the Truth.

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