Author: Roberta Grimes

And No Religion, Too

Imagine there’s no heaven. It’s easy if you try.
No hell below us. Above us, only sky.
Imagine all the people Livin’ for today.

Imagine there’s no countries. It isn’t hard to do.
Nothing to kill or die for. And no religion, too.
Imagine all the people, Livin’ life in peace.
You may say I’m a dreamer, But I’m not the only one.
I hope someday you’ll join us, And the world will be as one.
John Winston Lennon (1940-1980), from “Imagine” (1971)

 It amazes me to say that Jesus easily could have sat down at the piano and written “Imagine” with our dear Brother John. Well, except for the “Imagine there’s no heaven” part, although Jesus wouldn’t call where He is living now “heaven.” He would call it simply reality. Just a few days ago I was in shock about what Jesus was saying, and with no idea of what He might say next. Here is a Man who has accepted the torture and murder by Roman Christianity of millions upon millions of people in His name over seventeen hundred earth-years. And I was used to that Jesus. How clueless I was! I assumed that He simply loves people. So He welcomed, and He patiently healed all those victims, and in the process He Himself became ever more personally powerful, as would happen to anyone Who is living such constant, intense and perfect love in a reality governed by Consciousness. Then all in a moment, He didn’t just turn over all the money changers’ tables in the Temple (MT 21:12). Oh no. One day He decided to turn over and smash the entire Temple altogether. And He did it joyously!

And Jesus did all of this just as we were in the process of finishing a book and preparing a website to showcase His teachings, and all at His request. But this is not personal. Actually, I wrote that book three years ago, and it was good of my Thomas to refuse to let me publish it back then, since He knew that Jesus was about to make it obsolete. Now I can revise it and make it accurate. And I will do that, because this does make sense. It is alarming, but also exciting, and beyond anything that I ever could have expected from our Friend; but it is consistent with the four canonical Gospels. And after a couple of nightly meetings that Thomas has not allowed me to remember, but that Jesus has pushed through the essence of anyway, I get it. I do. Traditional religions – and especially all the forty-two-thousand versions of Roman Christianity – all make our spiritual growth more difficult, or they even make it impossible. So we will abandon them now, and we will follow Jesus.

The revelation that has shaken me a bit at first is that the new Christianity of Jesus must be unstructured. It can have no leaders and no rules at all. It must be based only on the four canonical Gospels, after all the parts that later were added by Nicaea have been cut away. It is a movement and not a religion; it is a set of teachings meant to transform each of us internally. And I can see now how that might possibly work. Without the distractions of churchy political nonsense to bother and befuddle our days, perhaps for the first time in two thousand years, people with even just a passing interest in Jesus might read and begin to put into practice what He taught.

The notion of building an entire movement around the four canonical Gospels will seem nonsensical to many theologians. Those Gospels were chosen, only four out of many, by the Council of Nicaea in 325, and choosing those four now leaves out some things that Jesus reportedly said. Ignoring the letters of Paul leaves out some ideas developed by the early church. There is just one reason why building an entire movement around those four Gospels makes sense. And that reason is that Jesus wants us to do it. He believes that people coming out of Roman Christianity will feel safest and most comfortable at first with just the canonical Gospels. And Jesus adds that if those who have been lifelong Roman Christians never venture beyond the canonical Gospels, they will still have enough of what He taught to achieve the kingdom of God on earth. Therefore, what they have will be sufficient. And if they want more, then they also will have the other Gospels in publication and close at hand! But to do what the Roman Christians have done, and to distort the Lord’s message with admixtures from the Old Testament and from Paul all muddling through the sacred words of Jesus as if they carried equal weight is pure foolishness and plain sacriledge.

Jesus carefully designed His teachings as a prescription for rapid spiritual growth. He undertook that earth-lifetime as Jesus two thousand years ago specifically to study people in order to figure out how to help us to achieve the most rapid spiritual growth, and He tells that story in an Appendix to The Fun of Loving Jesus. Most importantly, His teachings really do work well! They work amazingly well, but they have hardly been tried because Roman Christianity soon intervened and added its fear-based ideas and dogmas, and thereafter hardly anyone has taken the Gospel words of Jesus seriously. I write this, and then I read it, and I am freshly horrified. We have revered the Man, while never once in two millennia caring at all what Jesus actually said?  

But if the Lord’s teachings are indeed the most ideal method for achieving rapid spiritual growth, why then did He not introduce them to us sooner and insist that we take them seriously? Of course, He has an answer for that question that shames Roman Christianity to its core. During all of the past seventeen earth-centuries, Jesus has sadly had a greater priority. In an astral reality without time, Jesus has spent the past seventeen hundred earth-years in healing the hundreds of millions of victims of Roman Christianity. First there were the pogroms against the millions of Jesus’s first followers, who were murdered as Roman Christianity was being established. Then there were the Crusades and the Inquisitions,  all the ways in which many millions of people over the centuries were murdered in the name of Jesus. (And my dear friends, if you never have read Helen Ellerbe’s book, then please, for the sake of all the people that Roman Christianity has martyred, try to find the time to read it now!) And then, of course, in the twentieth century came the Holocaust, and the torture and murder of almost six million Jews and another five million others, simply for their ethnicity. And the murderers of all these people were, as we know, Roman Christian Nazis. So let’s just say that Jesus hasn’t had the time to do anything about Roman Christianity until now, because for most of the past two thousand years He has been otherwise occupied.

So now at last Jesus is witnessing the slow death of the Roman Christian usurper of His name and His rightful place. Now we might say that He can choose to take over Christianity and the use of His own name at whatever point in the history of what should have been His movement He might like, and carry it forward from there. And as I think about it, He seems to have been considering how best to do exactly that, during the  months of earth-time that I have been observing Him since I channeled Liberating Jesus for Him in early 2015. We who are living on earth assume that upper-level discarnates know everything that we know about human life. But in fact, they seem to be entirely disengaged from it. And even our spirit guides are connected to what is currently happening on earth only through us, so I am amazed to tell you that a lot of Jesus’s exploration of current conditions on the earth plane seems to have been happening through my Thomas, the being that He still refers to as His brother even six thousand years after they actually last were brothers in the flesh. And of course, my Thomas in turn is connected to the earth through me. So the three of us are basically Texans. But I realize in retrospect that Jesus has been trying to find a way to introduce His teachings without disrupting the two billion Christians that He so much loves, only to see that there really is no way to remove the fear from Christianity. Fear is baked in the cake. And since fear is the opposite of love, what you fear you cannot love, so to follow any religion at all makes spiritual advancement close to impossible.

Once Jesus had worked out all of that, it didn’t take Him long to decide that His only option was to erase Roman Christianity from His personal vision altogether, and to allow the religion to quietly die on its own. And of course, for someone who has lived as Jesus has lived for so many centuries, feeding astral fish in an astral river and communing with those astral deer while He patiently loved all those millions of victims of Christianity back into spiritual health, for Him to go right back to teaching in Galilee makes sense. So that is what His website will be: a recreation of His canonical Gospel teachings, together with instructions about how to use those teachings to achieve the kingdom of God on earth in the way that He told us that it will unfold, not out there but rather in our innermost hearts. For as Jesus told one of the Pharisees, “The kingdom of God is not coming with signs that can be observed; nor will they say, ‘Look, here it is!’ or, ‘There it is!’ For behold, the kingdom of God is within you” (LK 17:20-21). It is the very same spiritual elevation that you came to earth to achieve. And once you steep yourself in the teachings of Jesus alone, and in the right order, and you simply trust Jesus – keeping your hand always in His – then I don’t care if you are eighty years old when you begin to take the Lord’s teachings seriously, you can make this your last earth-lifetime. That is how amazingly transformative these teachings really are.

Oh my dear ones, this is so simple! And it has always been simple. The religion has only ever been in the way. When each Christian stops fearing God as a deity so lacking in love that God could actually require the blood-sacrifice to Himself of God’s own Son, and when each Christian instead realizes and truly knows in his or her deepest heart that God loves you, purely and completely, as God’s own favorite and best-beloved child, then the kingdom of God can take root in your heart. The pure Christianity that Jesus taught is entirely devoid of fear, as Jesus first told us in some of the most beautiful and comforting words ever spoken. Jesus said:

“And which of you by worrying can add a single day to his life’s span? Therefore, if you cannot do even such a very little thing, why do you worry about the other things? Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither labor nor spin; but I tell you, not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass in the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, how much more will He clothe you? You of little faith! And do not seek what you are to eat and what you are to drink, and do not keep worrying! For all these things are what the nations of the world eagerly seek; and your Father knows that you need these things. But seek His kingdom, and these things will be provided to you. Do not be afraid, little flock, because your Father has chosen to give you the kingdom!” (LK 12:25-32).

Imagine no possessions. I wonder if you can.
No need for greed or hunger. A brotherhood of man.
Imagine all the people, Sharing all the world.
You may say I’m a dreamer, But I’m not the only one.
I hope someday you’ll join us, And the world will live as one.
John Winston Lennon (1940-1980), from “Imagine” (1971)

 

The Lord’s Day Dawns

“Pray, then, in this way:

‘Father, who is in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’”
– Master Jesus, from The Bible (MT 6:9-13)

Our weekly Seek Reality podcast will be ten years old in June. And in those ten years I have received multiple thousands of emails from listeners that in retrospect have traced the long decline of Christianity. And that is surprising, given the fact that at least nominally, the reality that the podcast has been seeking has been the survival of death and the details of the afterlife. But we also have had a few Seek Reality guests with whom I have discussed the decline of traditional Christianity, so our listeners have learned that I have at least a passing interest in the religion as well. And I do invite emails from listeners. But still, so many who have emailed me have said some variant of the same three things:

  • They have been devout Christians from childhood.
  • They lately have fallen away from the religion.
  • Yet despite that, they remain devoted to Jesus.

Then they say, “So, what can I do now?” Most of these folks are in their sixties or seventies. And when I correspond with them, it is clear that they are bright, sensitive, often college-educated, and vastly troubled by their situation. Most are Catholics or mainline Protestants. And if they haven’t stopped attending church, they expect to make that decision shortly. I wish I had started years ago to keep track of the problems they each were having with the religion. But as best I can recall, these have been their complaints:

  • Churches are unwelcoming. Some of these people have moved, and the churches in their new area are cliquish. Or as they have developed concerns, there is no one able to answer their questions. Or when their former pastor died or retired or their longtime church was closed, they simply were left with no good options. But most of all, they are finding the congregations themselves to be standoffish and unwelcoming.
  • Christian teachings are unbelievable. Modern Christians in general are finding traditional Christian teachings to be less and less believable. The notion that God could demand the sacrifice to Himself of God’s own Son before God can forgive us for Adam’s sin in eating the apple seems to be the hardest belief for most modern people to swallow, but there are other problems as well. People wonder whether the wine and bread really do become the blood and flesh of Jesus. And they wonder how it is possible for a loving God to condemn some of His children to burn alive in hell forever for even what seem to be trivial sins.
  • They want a closer and deeper spiritual walk. This third problem is harder to pin down, but many Christians as they grow older find themselves wanting something more now than what is happening in modern churches of any denomination. Catholics find the homilies boring, and the Masses are just perfunctory. Even Protestants think their ministers are more and more flatly going through the motions. They want Jesus to be truly alive in the church! They want a sense of excitement and communion with the living Christ that somehow just isn’t happening for them.

So for them, and for Jesus, I am now going to try to give to my dear Friend His own Way. But apparently, Jesus no longer wants to call it His Way anymore. But instead, He wants to give it a whole new beginning. I talked last week about just how radical our beloved Friend has come to seem to me. So this fall we will publish The Fun of Loving Jesus – Embracing the Christianity That Jesus Taught. And then by the spring we hope to put the finishing touches on His planned website, called teachingsbyjesus.com. He seems just to want to walk the byways now, and teach and talk with and enjoy people. The last thing that Jesus wants to do is to start yet another religious variation! And after seventeen hundred years of Roman Christianity coming between Jesus and all the people who have been eager to know Him, He deserves the chance to speak directly with those who love Him, and in His own words to boot, without Roman Christianity any longer in His way.

 The picture that heads our post this week is a close approximation of Jesus’s face as He chooses to look today. The effect is different, and much diminished, since here you cannot feel His gorgeously silken personal energy. If you were as close to Him as you are to this picture, and if He wasn’t thinking about toning it down, you would feel a stunning and amazing power that, oddly, doesn’t seem to bother the children. But this is how He looks to His friends who are constantly coming and going by His river in the astral plane, and to all the millions of aborted children in all the children’s villages, with whom He spends a great deal of His time. And Jesus with toddlers climbing all over Him is a beautiful sight to see! Whenever possible, miscarried fetuses are reared by their own relatives, but nearly all the abortion victims grow to young adulthood in children’s villages over eight or nine years of earth-time. And since Roe v. Wade was decided in 1973 in the United States, there have been so many babies flooding into the afterlife that their villages are everywhere. The children’s villages are off-limits to all but specially trained care-givers, and in the past fifty years Jesus has made those villages His personal mission.

But is the face in that picture how Jesus actually looked two thousand years ago? He says He is happy with the picture, but when I asked Him if that is how He looked on earth, He told me just that everyone looked like that back then. And of course, He may never have seen His own face in a mirror. I should add that when modern Christians who have just arrived in the afterlife come to Him to be blessed, He transforms at once into pale church-Jesus, with blue eyes and light-brown hair to His shoulders, and He blesses them. But the picture above is Jesus as He has looked to me whenever I have been allowed to remember a meeting with Him. Now I cannot imagine Him looking any other way.

Jesus intends to have us tell His story on His website from His own perspective.  I have told Him that in that case, we ought to hire a young man to be His website’s narrator. Even maybe someone who looks like Him? But He shudders at the thought of that. Oh no. He trusts me, but that is only because Thomas can control me. He has been betrayed so often that now He trusts no one in a material body, which is a sad commentary on human nature. 

Beyond His life story as He told it to me, the only other thing that He wants on His website is His Gospel teachings. No dogmas. No rules!  Not even that we must love one another? He says No. He says that if you have rules, then you introduce the concept of Sin, which means that Fear comes next, and then you start the whole religion cycle over again. Oh lord. I am so looking forward to seeing how this goes!

It is a miracle that we have the Gospel teachings of Jesus preserved for us even as well as we have them preserved. When Jesus was in my mind for those two weeks that He channeled Liberating Jesus, He showed us how to recognize and pluck out the parts that Nicaea and others had later added to the Gospels. We will never have the words that were not preserved, but Jesus said as we were writing that book that the words that have survived are enough. And now I stop dead and I think yet again, oh my God. Why me?  

The idea of giving Jesus a website came from Thomas. Jesus doesn’t seem to know what a website even is, beyond a way to get information to people more efficiently; but then, He is always very far beyond busy. He has learned by experimenting to put only enough of Himself in my mind that it doesn’t feel as if my head is exploding, and this time I am more than just an instrument to Him. But I really doubt that He has ever been anybody’s spirit guide! He reminds me of my old law professors. For example, I said to Him in my mind, “I think you came to earth to abolish religions and teach us to relate to God directly. Am I right?” He said in response, “Hmmm. That is an interesting proposition. Can you prove it? Where do I say that?” Oy. So now I am back in law school?

But I think I actually can prove it. There are four steps.

First, You were disgusted with clergymen. For example, You said, Beware of the scribes who like to walk around in long robes, and like respectful greetings in the market places, and chief seats in the synagogues and places of honor at banquets, who devour widows’ houses, and for appearance’s sake offer long prayers; these will receive greater condemnation” (MK 12:38-40). And, “Woe to you religious lawyers! For you have taken away the key of knowledge; you yourselves did not enter, and you hindered those who were entering” (LK 11:52). And also, “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites, because you shut off the kingdom of heaven from people; for you do not enter in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in” (MT 23:13). Right?

Second, You routinely violated the Sabbath rules.  For example, you plucked grain and You healed on the Sabbath. And You said, “The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath” (MT 12:8). True?

Third, You frowned on public worship. You said, “Beware of practicing your righteousness before men to be noticed by them; otherwise you have no reward with your Father who is in heaven.When you pray, you are not to be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners so that they may be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full” (MT 6:1-5).

 And Fourth, You told us to worship God in secret. You said, “When you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you” (MT 6:6).

Oh wait, And Fifth, You wanted us to get past worshiping idols!  You said, “But a time is coming, and even now has arrived, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers.  God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth” (JN 23-24). That is also against religions.

 And you called clergymen snakes and vipers, but we don’t need to get into that. So, am I right? You came to teach us to get past all religions?  

 There was a pause. Then Jesus said, “It would be more impressive if you had all of that memorized.”

Distantly, I could hear Thomas chuckling. And Jesus has the driest sense of humor. What, so He was just teasing me?

There was a very recent time when that experience would have demoralized me. Jesus has to reduce His energies so much to be in my mind without overwhelming me that it was hard to tell, but I thought He was smiling and sending me a hug, although I could barely feel any of it. This working with Jesus feels as if I have coaxed the most exotic bird to perch on my finger, but He might at any moment fly away. I just sent Him the thought that we will get this all sorted out soon enough.

God Cannot Send You to Hell

People are often unreasonable and self-centered.
Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of ulterior motives.
Be kind anyway.
If you are honest, people may cheat you.
Be honest anyway.
If you find happiness, people may be jealous.
Be happy anyway.
The good you do today may be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.
Give the world the best you have and it may never be enough.
Give your best anyway.
For you see, in the end, it is between you and God.
It was never between you and them anyway.
– Mother Teresa of Calcutta (1910-1997), from “Do it Anyway” (Provenance Unknown)

A legal client of mine can recite today’s frame-verse from memory. She lives by it. As best I can tell via a quick Google search, these words were found on the wall of Mother Teresa’s spare little cell at the end of her life. And do you know, the more I think about them, the more they seem to be not a half-bad way to live a life of service. Whatever you do is always between you and God. And no matter how hard you work, you really cannot accomplish a blessed thing if you are worrying about what people think! Another bit of wisdom that a client shared long ago also has stuck in my mind. He said, “When you are twenty, you worry about what people think of you. When you are forty, you don’t care what people think of you. When you are sixty, you realize that nobody has been thinking about you at all.”  Liberating words to live by! Although on the other hand, someone else once told me that if you pick up a calf on the day he is born, and you continue to pick him up every day of his life, eventually you will be able to pick up a bull. I never have tried that, but intuitively it doesn’t seem to be wise. Especially as the bull gets friskier.

 But collecting aphorisms is one of the fruits of spending a lot of time with people who would like you to think they are very smart. And yet my beloved mother-in-law, who lived with us for the final decade of her life, actually gave me the greatest insight of all; short, of course, of the endless perfect wisdom that we have received from Jesus. She was forty years older than I was. And one day soon after her husband had a medical emergency that made them need to move in with us briefly – then he died soon thereafter, and she never left – she looked at me, and with an air of mild surprise she said, “You know, I don’t feel any older than you are.” I looked kindly at that dear and lovely woman who was then eighty-five years old, and who once had been a dancer so she sat and moved with dignity. But my goodness, she was eighty-five! And I smiled and thought, yeah, right!

It is only now, as I am closing in on eighty years old myself, that I realize that, you know, my dear beloved Mom was precisely right. I am no older in my mind than my own daughters are. I take walks with the daughter who lives with us. I pursue the same work-day that I did at forty, and the only concession I have made to my age is that I am more careful about avoiding injuries. I have given up horseback riding, for example, but I shrug about that, since I know it’s only temporary. And my Thomas has promised that I will ride out on Beau! So now my confident advice to forty-year-olds is to take care of your body and your mind. I may do a whole blog post of advice about that. I can see no reason why you shouldn’t live and work precisely the same way at eighty as you are living and working at forty. Because I do!

 There. That has given you a palate-cleanser, after we had a bit of turmoil in our comments section last week. And it occurs to me, too, that you might like to hear about the way that Jesus laughs. Thomas and I are meeting often now with Jesus as we talk about The Fun of Loving Jesus, which has been written and is in its revisions stage; and we also are talking about Jesus’s website, which is deep in its planning stage. I am not being allowed to remember our meetings, but I often wake up in the middle of the night with what I think of as marching orders. Have you ever known a bright and wholesome twenty-year-old? I have a grandson that age, and he reminds me of Jesus. Which is odd, when you think of it, given the rather dramatic difference in their ages, but Jesus has chosen to look and act about the same age as my grandson is now. Jesus has the most wonderful, delightful, and amazingly youthful laugh that sounds as if He is still a teenager, so His voice might crack at any moment. His laughter is loud and sweet and spontaneous, as if something had surprised and delighted Him. I woke up last night with the Lord’s laughter echoing freshly in my mind. I wish I could remember what the joke was about!

 And now, with our palates all suitably cleansed, let’s dispense forever with the thought that God might be able to condemn anyone to hell.  

First, of course, comes the plain certainty that God never judges us. Jesus tells us this simple fact in the Gospels the way He had to tell us a lot of things two thousand years ago, by breaking it into innocuous-seeming facts over days of time because He was always under observation by Temple guards. On one day He said, “For not even the Father judges anyone, but He has given all judgment to the Son, so that all will honor the Son even as they honor the Father” (JN 5:22-23). Okay, fair enough. He wasn’t arrested for saying that because at least Someone was going to judge us, right? But then, on a different day with different Temple guards, Jesus said, “If anyone hears My sayings and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world” (JN 12:47). And no Temple guard was bothered by that, either. But when we put both statements together, we hear Jesus telling us what in fact is true. There is no post-death judgment at all by any religious figure.

Instead, you yourself will be your own judge. That fact didn’t have to be mentioned in the Gospels, but I get a kick out of the fact that Jesus brings it up this way. Especially when you consider all the ears and minds and mouths and hands through which the Lord’s words had to pass in order to reach us, it truly is amazing that any of those words have survived at all, and especially with such specificity! Each of us, when we return home, will undergo a life review and get to feel how we have made everyone else in our whole lives feel. And then we will be asked to forgive everyone, which we gladly will do. Last of all, we will be asked to forgive ourselves. And that, of course, will be the problem. When you see how awful you made a few people feel in some situations that you have long forgotten, I sadly guarantee that you are going to feel pretty awful about yourself. No wonder Jesus made such a point of stressing our need to learn to forgive, no matter what. When His disciple, Peter, asked him, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven” (MT 18:21-23). And thinking of the life-review process brings to mind Jesus’s warning that we must not judge, lest we be judged. He said, “Do not judge so that you will not be judged. For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you” (MT 7:1-2). Because He knew that one day soon you were going to face this almost impossible task of having to forgive yourself.

So, now we understand that there is no post-death judgment by anyone but yourself. I think we have thoroughly made that case.

 But, is there a hell?

I wrote a blog post a year ago this weekend in which I explained how we know that there is no hell. I cannot improve on what I wrote back then, so I hope you will read it as if it were a part of this post. Please “incorporate it herein by reference,” as we lawyers like to say. And Keith Giles, my favorite modern theologian, does an effective job of demolishing the various theories that some have put forth that Jesus might ever have taught about hell.

That leaves us just a few suspiciously hellish-sounding Gospel references to something Jesus called “the outer darkness.” For example, I say to you that many will come from east and west, and recline at the table with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven; but the sons of the kingdom will be cast out into the outer darkness; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth” (MT 8:11-12). And, “For to everyone who has, more shall be given, and he will have an abundance; but from the one who does not have, even what he does have shall be taken away. Throw out the worthless slave into the outer darkness; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth” (MT 25:29-30). Oh, good grief! What is all that about?

The lowest level of the afterlife and the astral plane is cold, dark, smelly, disgusting, and exactly what Jesus called it: it’s the Outer Darkness. If we cannot forgive ourselves after death for the way we have made other people feel during our lifetime just ended, our consciousness vibration slows until eventually we will end up at that very lowest level, simply because we can fall no farther. And apparently we cannot raise our consciousness vibration unaided and manage to get out on our own. Eventually we will be rescued, but meanwhile our existence is miserable indeed.

So God cannot send you to hell because, first, there is no post-death judgment by God or by any other religious figure; and second, because there is no hell to receive you.

And meanwhile, our planning for Jesus’s website goes on. I have no memory of these apparently almost-nightly meetings that we are having with Jesus, but I can tell from my Thomas’s general mood and from the few little tidbits of memories that he lets me keep that progress is being made. But Jesus seems more and more to be thinking like a radical! I graduated from college in 1968. Smith, like most other colleges, ended classes early that year because in 1968 my generation was marching in the streets. We had seen what governments could do, drafting our high school friends to die for nothing, and we were out there trying to tear everything down. And now, insofar as I can tell, Jesus has come to feel every bit as radical about those in religious authority. My Thomas has access to the life-memories of Thomas Jefferson, who was another radical thinker who didn’t trust putting governmental power into the hands of just a few. And there my Thomas is, conspiring with Jesus, who has spent the past two thousand years healing the pain that too much power in the hands of a few caused to all those millions of martyred Christians.  

I have no idea anymore what my role in all of this is supposed to be. All I know is that, apparently, now Jesus no longer wants to call His planned new movement The Way of Jesus. He no longer wants it to have any rules, because if there are rules, then soon there are rulers. I just look at my Thomas (so to speak) and say, “Not even ‘Love your neighbor as yourself?’ What the heck kind of sense does that make?”

He is in his Jefferson mode at the moment, so he just says some of the more airheady romantic-dreamer things that Jefferson used to say in life, like calling for a revolution every twenty years. And an entirely new Constitution. He says that since Jesus will always be there, then why does His movement need to have any rules?  

“But I won’t be on earth to interpret whatever He says! How long do you expect me to live here, anyway?”

“Eat right. Then you’ve got another thirty years. Maybe more.”

Well, I have to say that at least now Jesus does seem to be a lot happier. That’s something.

Is Jesus God?

The long and winding road That leads to Your door
Will never disappear. I’ve seen that road before.
It always leads me here. Lead me to Your door!

The wild and windy night That the rain washed away
Has left a pool of tears, Crying for the day.
Why leave me standing here? Let me know the way!
– John Lennon (1940-1980) & Paul McCartney, from “The Long and Winding Road” (1970)

For years I have read the blogs and newsletters of a dozen public clergymen and theologians. They range from the highly respectable and much-beloved Father Richard Rohr of the Center for Action and Contemplation in Albuquerque, New Mexico to an unfashionable and thoroughly by-the-Book, fire-and-brimstone fellow at the other end of the range. I respect and love them all for their sincere and wholehearted devotion to God, to Jesus, and to their fellow man. Even though I am no longer practicing Roman Christianity, all of those who love and serve Jesus are my cherished brothers and sisters in Christ.

 This year is shaping up to be the most astonishing year of my entire life. Oh my goodness, I have actually met Jesus! You don’t consider such a thing to be even possible, although now Jesus really is my friend. He has a voice that I know, with a minimal accent. He has a beautiful face that I adore. He has that overwhelmingly powerful silken energy, and He has mannerisms that I fondly recognize. I think of Him smiling a little and turning away when I said something flattering to Him. Never do that. Jesus just wants to be accepted and loved as one of us.

 And now I read those daily or weekly missives from my old-friend clergymen with some amazement. They write as if my new friend, Jesus, has been sitting on a shelf for the past two thousand years with a blank stare on His face, just gathering dust. Or they even confidently write as if He is a quaint relic of some earthly Middle Eastern past. Why has it not occurred to any of them even to speculate about what He might have been doing during all that time since He last went home? Each human life is eternal, and what with the Inquisitions and the Crusades and all the rest of Roman Christian history, might it not have been worth at least a speculative blog post about Jesus’s possible subsequent involvement in the world? And perhaps the Lord’s own resulting further personal spiritual growth?

And my clergyman friends still write from within the religion! This fact astonishes me sometimes, especially with the more sophisticated of them. Max Planck’s revolutionary discoveries about consciousness are now a century old, and even though the mainstream scientific gatekeepers still are stonewalling them, his ideas by now have permeated our culture. Father Rohr is a Franciscan priest, and He actually said during one of His more recent newsletter cycles that he had thought about making some radical changes, but he had decided to “stay defiantly,” or words to that effect. Sometimes, when I am reading what these beloved clergyfolks write, I feel as if I am reading missives from some distant land that is stuck in the past and holding my dear clergyfriends prisoner. While Christianity continues to decline worldwide, they all still fret about terms and timelines and apologetics, and they fuss about modern concepts like something called “harmonial religion.” And all that I ever see them say about Jesus the Man is centered around events two thousand years in the past. Even then, their observations often involve details that were peripheral to the Lord’s life and work.

But I am so far beyond all of that now! And wow, I have got to say it: so is Jesus, pretty clearly. I don’t know who first used the term “church-Jesus,” whether He said it or I did, but Jesus seems to be just about as done with church-Jesus as I am. And at this point, Thomas no longer can effectively impede my curiosity, so this week I have dared to ask more questions. What were Thomas and Jesus fighting about? Of course, they weren’t actually fighting-fighting. And with Jesus’s permission, Thomas has been telling me about some of their experiments as they have tried to understand why Jesus can’t seem to feel anger. They have determined that He must have disabled His ability to feel anger while He was helping all those victims of Christianity.

At least, that is their present theory. Here were all those suffering people! Anyone else seeing them arriving home in that condition and in their millions would have become enraged, but Jesus felt only love and compassion for the torturers as well as the victims. Not normal. But Jesus tells Thomas now that He probably thought that if He had let Himself feel anger at what He was seeing, He might not have been able effectively to help all those victims. Still, we know that Jesus was able to feel some righteous anger during His lifetime as Jesus (See e.g. MK 7:1-23 and MT 21:11-13). So He and Thomas then together looked back even further, at their last earth-lifetime together as brothers, just as all of us can look at the records of our prior lives once we are back in our greater minds.

So what I was allowed to witness last week that led to Thomas chasing Jesus and pinning Him in the grass was a bit of their effort to recapture their lives lived within that ancient family that Thomas now tells me actually happened about 6,300 years ago. Which goes to show you that sibling rivalries can be remarkably persistent! Thomas was the oldest son in a ruling family, but Jesus was their mother’s favorite. She was lobbying to get Thomas removed as their father’s successor and Jesus installed in his place, even though Thomas was a warrior and already a successful general, and Jesus had never been willing to fight. Their youngest brother, who later lived an earth-lifetime as the Apostle John, didn’t figure into this rivalry. And later of course it all became moot when their city was wiped out in a massacre, after which Jesus became an ascended being. But Thomas and Jesus were able to get pretty deep into their memories, including recalling and using again the epithets that they had hurled at one another as boys, which Thomas translated into English. So their using those memories to try to revive Jesus’s ability to feel some level of anger was the nighttime event that Thomas had allowed me to remember. And thus they have established the curious Freudian fact that all that Jesus has to do now is to say “Butcher-Boy” to Thomas, and it puts Thomas into an immediate rage.

Now of late, Thomas and I have been discussing what more he and Jesus have been learning about how the process of spiritual growth seems to work. This question has seized Thomas’s mind, and with his current occupational limitation he mostly has just me to share it with, so he has been pulling me away from my other work to debate the question at hand. And that question for him has come down to this: Knowing what we know now, can we say that Jesus has actually, literally become God, having once been actually, literally just a human being, and in fact what my Thomas has referred to a couple of times lovingly and probably mostly in jest as his own bratty little brother? Jesus has been part of our discussion too, but since we have been talking about Him and He seems to be devoid of ego, He won’t contribute a point of view. I just have sometimes been feeling His silken energy nearby. I think He is curious. And while there probably is no clear-cut answer to this question, Thomas and I agree that the answer seems to be yes. It is yes no matter which of two different angles we take.

First: Jesus was born on earth as Jesus two thousand years ago directly from out of the Godhead. He had earned that spiritual level even back then, and His service to God and to humankind as Jesus surely has earned Him a great deal more in terms of spiritual growth. The fact that He chose not to return to and meld with the Godhead after His Ascension does not reduce any of that; but if anything, it further enhances it.

Second: The unique life of selfless love, sacrifice, and service on lowly Level Three that Jesus has been living for the past two thousand years has led to extraordinary additional spiritual growth that my Thomas witnessed as it was happening, and that amazing additional growth is obvious to me just as a visitor. But it really is impossible to quantify, in part because Jesus seems to be unwilling to test it.

Jesus has inadvertently made of Himself an experiment in extreme love and service. I cannot imagine that it ever will be replicated. If someone loves and serves hundreds of millions of people intensely, unceasingly, and for two thousand years, and so selflessly that He doesn’t allow His own spiritual development to advance by levels as it usually happens naturally, but instead He does all of this without ever leaving the third level of the astral plane, then what happens? Then you get Jesus as He is today. I find it hard to describe Him for you. It seems to be first now that He even feels free enough of fixing the mess that the Romans made of Christianity to even know who He is, Himself. This experimenting with trying to help Him feel human emotions again beyond love and sevice that He and Thomas have been doing has been helpful to Him, I think. It has helped to loosened and relax His mind. But what they have mostly learned is that at this point, Jesus is a Being unique unto Himself.

My mother was very close to death at the age of eighty-eight. After she came out of her coma, she even told me that her parents had come for her, but she had refused to go with them. So then a few days later she had a visit from a classic sixth-level being who told her that she would be given a little more time on earth. My mother had no idea what that being had been! She called it just “the big tall man.” And on that crowded hospital floor, she was the only one who saw it. Classically, sixth-level beings who appear on earth are often eight or more feet tall, very thin, and vaguely male or female but androgynous. They wear what look like angel robes with fancy belts and hats, and they glow with either a silver or a golden radiance. Or they might prefer to be simply a ball of light that you recognize as an individual being by its energy signature.

Jesus has been to the sixth level, which we are told is indescribably beautiful. But Thomas tells me that Jesus finds it boring, as of course He would. There are no regular people there. I haven’t asked Thomas whether Jesus has traveled even higher than Level Seven, which is the Godhead level, but I believe that He could indeed travel higher, if He chose to do that. Thomas is as curious as I am about how much power Jesus actually has at this point; indeed, we speculate that He is more powerful now than the entire Godhead Collective put together. Remember that even back when He resurrected His crucified body as Jesus, it has been estimated based on studying the scorch on the Shroud of Turin that He used more power to do that than we would be able to produce, even today. But not only does Jesus have no interest in testing His present power, but the whole idea of His having any kind of power that you could measure actually seems to disgust Him. Oddly, He seems to have come to equate divine power with money in some way, the lust for which He sees as having harmed so many of His human friends.

Jesus lives entirely by His own lights. In all of the whole gigantic astral plane, achieving the top of the sixth level and becoming one of those ten-foot-tall beings in angelic robes and with the flashiest belt and hat, all of it radiant with the brightest possible gold and silver and showing what a spiritual big-shot we are is everybody’s ultimate goal. And then there is Jesus. By choice, He is barely six feet tall, with short, curly hair and a regular beard and He wears just a plain astral robe that doesn’t glow at all. The only signifier of Jesus’s spiritual status is The Big One. The one that no one can hide. It is His overwhelmingly powerful and perfectly silken personal energy. And He even tries to tone that down.

Jesus innocently defies every convention of human spiritual growth that we have learned, or even that we can imagine. Thomas tells me that as Jesus has begun to think beyond His two-thousand-year detour into His need to minimize the harm that was caused on earth by Roman Christianity, some of what seems to be an endless supply of friends always coming and going are advising Him now to simply leave our astral dimension altogether. And Thomas tells me that some of Jesus’s inner circle also are advising Him to take that advice and disappear. I have had no idea about this, but Thomas tells me that Jesus, together with the Buddha and Krishna and some other great Wisdom teachers I have never heard of who were developed on earth are greatly revered in other dimensions. And I have heard Jesus say something about preparing to teach in those other realms.

So on Friday I asked my Thomas what he thinks that Jesus is going to do now. “Do you think He really will go and teach somewhere else? I think I can do a website about His teachings all on my own based on the Gospels and Liberating Jesus, if He wants to leave something of Himself here.”

Thomas said, “You know Him. What do you think that He will do?”

“I know what He should do. After we’ve just given Him two thousand years of grief!”

“But what do you expect Him to do?’

I thought about the Jesus I know. His voice. His face. I said, “He loves people. I think what would make Him happiest is staying here with us. And God knows, no one needs His teachings now more than we do, right here!”

Thomas smiled. And to the extent that it is possible for someone who is actually internal to give you a hug, I think he gave me a hug.

 

Many times I’ve been alone, And many times I’ve cried.
Anyway, You’ll never know The many ways I’ve tried.
And still they lead me back To the long winding road.
You left me standing here A long, long time ago.
Don’t leave me waiting here. Lead
me to Your door!
– John Lennon (1940-1980) & Paul McCartney, from “The Long and Winding Road” (1970)

Jesus Needs No Religion

When morning gilds the skies, My heart awaking cries:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Alike at work and prayer, To Jesus I repair;
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Does sadness fill my mind? A solace here I find,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Or fades my earthly bliss? My comfort still is this,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
The night becomes as day. When from the heart we say:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
In heav’n’s eternal bliss, The loveliest strain is this,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
– Anonymous/Unknown, from “When Morning Gilds the Skies” (ca. 1744)

Jesus does not want to be worshiped. I mean, He really does not want to be worshiped! I have experienced the sting of the Lord’s aversion to being worshiped on a personal level, so I know whereof I speak. Feminists in the nineteen-sixties used to say that a woman needs a man the way a fish needs a bicycle, and that about sums up the way Jesus feels about being worshiped. It has been nearly half a year since I sat beside Him on that astral riverbank and helped him feed His pet fish, and over and over since that night I have replayed in my mind the moment when He blurted, “Why are you so afraid of me?” He sounded genuinely hurt that night, as if I had out of the blue told Him that He had a bad smell perhaps, or even told Him that I thought His precious Gospel words were garbage. But my only confounding problem was His overwhelmingly powerful personal energy. I couldn’t even look at His face.

 Jesus had been patient and kindly that night with the Christians who had come for His blessing. They could feel His energy just as I could feel it, since in the astral plane our personal energies are impossible to hide. Among the rest of us, Jesus was God on the riverbank. It is no wonder that the tall man who was first in line to be blessed tried to fall to his knees in worship. But Jesus had been ready for that, and He had kindly helped the man to regain his feet. So, why had Jesus taken my reaction to His energy so personally?

Thomas lets me figure out most things on my own. And this has taken me quite some time. Thomas and I have met with Jesus often over the summer while my body slept, but I have not been allowed to remember those meetings. Basically, I have spent some time in the doghouse. That meeting beside the Lord’s astral river happened without Thomas’s having briefed me at all, so I seem to have flunked whatever test that was. And then Jesus tried out the possibility of doing a kind of Mikey-and-Carol thing for His upcoming website, where people would ask Jesus questions, and it turns out that I can hear Him in my mind just fine; but no way would people ever believe that I can chat with Jesus in my mind! So I have put a panicky kibosh on that idea.  

 It is easy for us to understand a human being wanting to be God. But how much harder it is for us to understand God wanting to be human! I am trying now to better understand Jesus so I can do a decent job with His website. And when I asked Thomas for the umpteenth time to tell me what we have been talking about when we have been meeting with Him all summer, he told me that he has been doing for Jesus what Jesus needs, and doing for me what I need. Which helps me not at all.

 So then on Wednesday morning, I began to get bits of a memory of what I soon came to realize we must have been doing on Tuesday night. Thomas and Jesus were sitting together on a little astral hillock beneath an orange sky, talking and gazing over Jesus’s river; and I was nearby. I didn’t have a sense of having a body. I was fascinated to realize that they seemed to be speaking in a kind of pidgin, several languages at once, so I recognized what sounded like some English words, and also French words and Spanish words, and also many words that I didn’t recognize. They were speaking softly, and their voices were rich with affection for one another. As the memory deepened, I was enjoying just listening to them. They have told us they were brothers very long ago, in Jesus’s last earth-lifetime before He ascended to the Godhead level, and you could hear that familial affection in their voices as they talked. I didn’t know what any of it meant, or the mixed languages, or whatever they were saying, but it didn’t matter. And this went on for a while. Clearly, they were happy just to be together.

Then Jesus was saying something more loudly, and standing, and dodging away from Thomas. I heard my Thomas mutter, “Brat!” as he was reaching for Jesus, but he missed Him; and then he was chasing Him into a herd of deer that happened to be nearby. I was horrified! I seemed to be very tall, or else I was rising above them so I could watch the drama of Thomas chasing Jesus among the deer. The animals were tame, so although some were spooked, most just moved out of the way and dropped their heads again to graze. I could see now that Jesus was nearly doubled over with laughter, but Thomas seemed to be genuinely angry. Jesus was dodging, watching for Thomas, but my Thomas was taller and stronger and inevitably he was going to catch Jesus. Which of course he did, and then they both went down. I didn’t want to see whatever was going to happen next, but perhaps I was supposed to see it. I rose higher. And there they were, in astral robes, my spirit guide and Jesus, the risen Lord, fighting like teenagers in the astral grass. But they weren’t really fiercely fighting. And astral bodies cannot be damaged. Thomas was holding Jesus down. I thought I heard Thomas say “Smite me, brat! Go right ahead!” and words I couldn’t recognize. Jesus’s eyes locked on mine, and there the memory ends.

By Wednesday afternoon I had resurrected that whole awful memory. And of course, I wouldn’t have it unless they both wanted me to have it. But I had to know how all of that had ended! And what had they been fighting about? Were they back on speaking terms by now? Tentatively I said to Thomas, “Will you tell me more about last night?”

“That was back in July.”

That was all that he wanted to say, but I got right in his face, so to speak. So then he sent me more in a bolus of thought.

Thomas told me almost fiercely that Jesus has not been human for thousands of years. Even as Jesus, He was born from the Godhead. So now Thomas was helping Jesus recall how it had felt to be human. And how to communicate by speaking in words, rather than sending whole ideas. And how to feel human emotions other than love and bliss.

What? So they had just been play-fighting? Thomas caught my thought. He sent me a second bolus with the further information that Jesus is incapable of feeling anger. They have learned at least that much. That is why the whole religious notion of an angry God is “hogwash.” Thomas said that word separately. “Hogwash.” He was telling me that even in the last lifetime that they had lived as brothers, Jesus had been incapable of feeling anger, just as I was sending him the mental image of a ticked-off Jesus chasing money-changers from the Temple with a whip. Thomas said, “At least, now He cannot feel anger!” as I was saying, “Are you crazy? Remember who He is! If He really did smite you, you’d go up in smoke!”

So then Thomas said, sounding bitter, “You could be of some help, you know. Instead of hovering around like a fool every night!”

I was outraged by that, and with reason. I haven’t even known what was going on! But Thomas was on a roll. He said in words, “You know He doesn’t trust people in bodies. You could help Him. Teach Him. I last died a hundred years ago! I am reminded of what it was like to be human only by guiding you! He wants to learn better English. Converse with Him in English. Just stop being so uneasy around Him!”

“Is that so He can talk on His website?

“And what if it is? Would you deny Him that?”

Well, no.

But how is it possible to explain to Someone Who has not been on earth for two thousand years that the fact that He is the most popular person on earth will not translate to popularity on His website? People expect Jesus to stay in His lane! He is God, for heaven’s sake. He is a religious figure! But Jesus’s greatest wish is to find a way to shield His personal energy enough so He can walk into some random building on earth in an astral body, and be with people again. He wants to just simply talk with people in English. In Spanish. That is all that He wants. I type these words, and my eyes fill with tears. Because He knows that He really can’t do that now. His elevated personal energy would give Him away. Or, worse, what I most worry about is that people would think He was an alien being, and they would turn on Him. But even if what He is planning now is just some kind of Second Coming on His website, that is never going to work. No one would believe such a thing could be real. But who is going to explain that to Him? 

Thomas finally realized on Thursday that I am just too thick to ever figure out why Jesus treats me differently, so he said just two words. He said, “Inner circle.” And after another half a day, I slapped my forehead. We think in terms of these little lifetimes, but Jesus has been living one continuous astral lifetime for the past two thousand years. If you are Jesus, your life is a very long game. He is used to the fact that the people closest to Him will repeatedly come and go. And I have no memory of it now, but apparently Jesus has a much-loved inner circle of friends. After I figured out the basics, Thomas filled me in. I first met Thomas at the start of the Roman pogrom against nonconforming Christians, some seventeen hundred years ago, so that was when I first met Jesus. And I became a part of this inner circle of people who are His personal friends. I have come and gone in His life through repeated incarnations as I lived seventeen lifetimes with Thomas, all of which were centered around protecting the Gospel teachings, and the last of which before this one was lived in the nineteenth century. I have no conscious memory of any of this while I am in this body, of course, but now I know it to be true. 

Thomas tells me that Jesus’s inner circle is not composed of religious figures. We are just what Americans might call His buddies, or the British might call His mates. And we are all male, or nearly all male, so the fact that in this lifetime I am female has been a source of some amusement. When we are between lives, we are in our right minds, as Thomas puts it, but when we are taking earth-lives we are living with diminished minds and amnesia issues. And beyond the fact that Jesus has more time to be social now, and He wanted to discuss with Thomas and me some details of His upcoming website, one of the reasons why He wanted to meet with me on April 6th and have me remember the meeting was that one of the Christians about to be blessed would be a mother who had died in childbirth, and who would be coming to Jesus with her baby in her arms. Jesus had thought that might be a bonding moment to help me feel more at ease with Him, since I might speak with the mother and hold the child. There seems to be something about this gender-change thing that has put me out of sync with Him. But of course, I still was so nervous to be with Jesus, and He couldn’t risk upsetting the mother, so instead Thomas took me with him down the river while Jesus blessed the mother and her child.

But at least, I finally do get it now, after having spent this whole earth-lifetime feeling awkward around Jesus. I understand why He uniquely trusts me. Why my mind syncs so easily with His that I was able to channel Liberating Jesus, and why when He wants to speak to me in my mind, I can hear His voice as clearly as if He is speaking to me on a cellphone. Thomas tells me that I have begun to give Jesus lessons in spoken English conversation at night, sitting there on the riverbank and talking with Him. Now I even will look at His face. When Jesus told me a little joke, Thomas says that I was able to smile. But I still have trouble believing that I am past being stupid about Him, so for now it seems to be just as well that I not be allowed to remember our meetings.  

Jesus the risen Christ dearly loves people! All that He has done for the past at least five thousand years, He has done for His pure, joyous love for billions of people as individuals. Jesus doesn’t want worship because worship distances people from Him. So, no, Jesus doesn’t need religion. He doesn’t want religion. And surely, after all that He has done for us, the least that we who love Him can do is to try to give Him what He actually wants.

Let earth, and sea, and sky From depth to height reply,
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Be this, while life is mine, My song of love divine:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
Sing this eternal song Through all the ages long:
May Jesus Christ be praised!
– Anonymous/Unknown, from “When Morning Gilds the Skies” (ca. 1744)

God Needs No Religion

With what shall I come to the Lord
And bow myself before the God on high?
Shall I come to Him with burnt offerings,
With yearling calves?
Does the Lord take pleasure in thousands of rams,
In ten thousand rivers of oil?
Shall I give Him my firstborn for my wrongdoings,
The fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?
He has told you, O mortal one, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you
But to do just
ice, to love kindness,
And to walk humbly with your God?

– Micah of Moresheth (c.737 BCE – c.696 BCE), from the Old Testament Book of Micah 6-8

When I was in college, God died unexpectedly. It was big news at the time. But I was thoroughly distracted in the sixties, what with finishing college and moving to Manhattan and learning to program an IBM 360 computer the size of a house that had far less power than your current cellphone. And anyway, that God-is-dead thing turned out to be a false alarm. The God that died in the sixties could not have been the genuine God. Because amazingly, things just kept on running, which would not have been the case if the God Who had died had been the Source of all Creation.

Being in contact with your spirit guide who will fairy freely answer your questions feels a bit like being able to secretly cheat on your final exams. My Thomas doesn’t know everything, but he knows considerably more than I do. And over the years, he has wanted me to figure out most things on my own. But now that I have arrived at what seem to him to be some pretty good answers, he has been helping me more along the way.

And we know now for certain that all the ancient religions have been wrong about the genuine God. Thomas has patiently blogged with me as I have been learning more about the Divine, primarily because I have been having such a hard time accepting what I now see is true. All the religions have been made by man, so they have been tainted by man’s worst impulses. Thomas has had a lot of trouble helping me to see these truths. Let’s look at some of the key elements of religions that are human-made:

  • Dogmas are all those rules and statements that each religion lays down as true, and generally tells us are dictated from on high by that religion’s God.
  • Rituals are ceremonies performed according to a prescribed order, and again are dictated or strongly suggested by that religion’s God.
  • Traditions are customs or beliefs passed on from generation to generation, and – you guessed it – often are said to be divinely mandated.
  • Laws are mandates and requirements passed on from generation to generation, and … ditto.
  • Feasts are traditional meals prepared and consumed at certain times and in certain ways, and once again the details of these meals are often said to be divinely mandated.

Thomas and I don’t express opinions about modern religions other than Christianity. But from Jesus’s perspective, it is reasonable to say that every element of Christianity is ranked below the Law of Love. Jesus beautifully summed up that central and only law when He said, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the great and foremost commandment.  The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets” (MT 22:37-40).

And now look at our frame-verse for today! The Hebrew Prophet Micah is considered to be one of the Twelve Minor Prophets because he was a contemporary of the great Isaiah, and Isaiah always gets top billing. But Micah is my favorite prophet. You can read his frustration with the old formal human-designed ways of relating to God in every word! And isn’t “Do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with your God” nothing but “Love God and love your neighbor,” but just said a bit differently? Aren’t Micah and Jesus preaching from the same book held in the Hand of the selfsame God?

Jesus seems pretty clearly to have decided either before He began His public ministry or very soon thereafter to do away with His followers’ attachments to religions altogether. This resolve would of course have been complicated by the fact that He was always under close observation by the Temple guards, and had they even suspected that He had such an idea in His mind, He could have been arrested and tried for what would have been seen as a capital thought-crime. And He would likely have ended His earthly ministry on a cross considerably before that eventually did happen.

He told us quite specifically not to blend His teachings into Judaism, which is exactly what was later done, even despite His specific direction not to do it. He said, “But no one puts a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment; for the patch pulls away from the garment, and a worse tear results.  Nor do people put new wine into old wineskins; otherwise the wineskins burst, and the wine pours out and the wineskins are ruined; but they put new wine into fresh wineskins, and both are preserved” (MT 9:16-17). “Therefore every scribe who has become a disciple of the kingdom of heaven is like a head of a household, who brings out of his treasure things new and old” (MT 13:52).

And Jesus famously had little use for clergymen!  The canonical Gospels are full of passages like these: Beware of the scribes who like to walk around in long robes, and like respectful greetings in the market places, and chief seats in the synagogues and places of honor at banquets, who devour widows’ houses, and for appearance’s sake offer long prayers; these will receive greater condemnation” (MK 12:38-40). And, “Woe to you religious lawyers! For you have taken away the key of knowledge; you yourselves did not enter, and you hindered those who were entering” (LK 11:52). He summed up His attitude toward clergymen and their religions pretty well when He said, “Rightly did Isaiah prophesy about you, ‘This people honors Me with their lips, But their heart is far away from Me. And in vain do they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men ” (MK 7:5-7). Jesus really had their number!

A strong case can be made that Jesus was not trying to build a new religion at all, but instead He wanted to abolish all religions, and to establish in their place individual ways for each of us to relate to God. How else are we to hear the following words?

“Beware of practicing your righteousness before men, to be noticed by them; otherwise you have no reward with your Father who is in heaven. So, when you give to the poor, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be honored by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. But when you give to the poor, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving will be in secret; and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.

“When you pray, you are not to be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners so that they may be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full.  But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you” (MT 6:1-6).

In fact, Jesus tells us in the Gospels that He and His disciples can rightfully and without any guilt break every Sabbath law (see generally MT 12:1-12). It may indeed be reasonable for us to say that Jesus told us two thousand years ago that for Himself and for His followers, He was abolishing the very concept of religions. Please look again at the five human-made traits of religions outlined above, of which the Way of Jesus was gloriously free for those first three hundred years! But then Constantine and his successor Roman emperors massacred in their millions the first free Christians who were following The Way of Jesus. And then the Romans built their fear-based religion as a means of mass control.  So when it is suggested that it might at last be time to separate God from religion, my immediate reaction has to be, “Heck yes!”  My goodness, Jesus would tell us it is long past time!

But just Who or What is God? God is Consciousness, within Whom we live and move and have our being. Consciousness creates reality in each micro-instant, and beyond Consciousness nothing else exists.  Credit for this discovery should long since have gone to Max Planck, who won the 1918 Nobel Prize in Physics as the father of quantum mechanics. But the mainstream scientific community is so terrified of inadvertently finding God that they have resolutely ignored Dr. Planck’s discovery, and instead of building on his breakthrough, they have effectively halted most meaningful investigative scientific progress in its tracks. For more than a century, they have pointlessly wasted billions of dollars trying to find a source of consciousness inside the human brain. Given the demonstrable primacy of Consciousness, and the abundant evidence that Consciousness easily exists apart from the brain and obviously survives the death of the brain, these ever more extreme and ridiculous scientific flounderings have become beyond-pitiful to contemplate. The more time and money scientists waste on this nonsense, the more infamy will attach to them when in fifty years, or in five hundred years, some bright young physicist wins the eventual and inevitable Nobel Prize in Physics for a Consciousness Theory of Everything. And then at last physics will return to being a productive scientific field.

But meanwhile, we who are not afraid of finding God are seeking an ever deeper understanding of Consciousness. And there are some important things to be said here!

First, of course, is a better delineation of the physics of the energy-like potentiality which is Consciousness. Love is the highest, strongest, and most powerful Consciousness vibration, while fear is the lowest and the weakest. Keep these central facts in mind. Franklin Roosevelt, with his “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself” wisdom, was quite the visionary scientific philosopher!

Second is the fact that Consciousness is continuous. There is no actual division between you and me. This fact is most obvious when we are in the astral plane, where we can read one another’s energy vibration from feet away. I found this to be most remarkable when I sat beside Jesus there in April with perhaps two feet of space between us, and I was allowed to remember that experience. I was enveloped in His amazingly silken personal energy.

Third is the fact that we enter this material universe in order to attempt to grow spiritually, and the reason why this works so well is simple. Our minds cannot easily mess with matter, as they can with the energies in our astral home. Combine that fact with willing amnesia, life-planning, and the help of a spirit guide. And you have a very useful spiritual school!

Fourth, as we go beyond what I have been able to learn on my own with Thomas’s guidance, he has told me that ours is not the only universe, but it is one of many realities. He will say no more about it now, but he admits that there is no way that we can puzzle out such information on our own. We will have the chance to learn more once we go home.

Fifth, my Thomas feels that the easiest way for us to envision God is to think of Consciousness as something like a pail, with this material reality and all of us who feel that we are separated from one another although we are not really separate at all currently living toward the bottom of it, and in reality there is no top. So materiality is at the lowest level of Consciousness of which we are aware.

Sixth, each of us while we are on earth has a spirit guide who is our spiritual conduit to the higher levels of reality. Your spirit guide is what amounts to God’s ear and hand and heart in your earthly life.

Seventh, as we advance spiritually, we can eventually become spirit guides ourselves. And with further advancement, we can become perfected beings and elect to join the Godhead Collective of many thousands of perfected beings which continuously manifests our reality. Or else we can choose to venture ever higher. There is no limit to our possible spiritual elevation.

And Eighth, Thomas tells me that, yes, above it all there is what he calls an ultimate High God. And that eternal God is happy to wait those foolish scientists out. Human scientists can dither and waste time and money for another thousand years if they like. In the end, they will find no better explanation for the existence of every reality than the Mind of God.

My Spirit Guide

The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
He leads me to lie down in green pastures.
He leads me beside quiet waters. He restores my soul.
He guides me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sale.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You have anointed my head with oil; My cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life,
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
– David (1040-970 BCE), Third King of the United Kingdom of Israel, Biblical Psalm 23

Each of us has one master spirit guide through life. It surprises me that so few people are eager to make the most of what is such an amazing personal resource! To go through your whole life never coming to closely know your spirit guide is like ignoring the fact that you have two hands and not one, simply because your non-primary hand is clumsier and your spirit guide is invisible. I am going to refer to your spirit guide as “him,” but you might well have a female guide. In fact, just anecdotally, our guides are often of the opposite gender. Your primary spirit guide is likely to be someone who has lately achieved the upper fifth level of spiritual development, and has therefore reached the point where he no longer needs to incarnate, but he can continue to grow spiritually by guiding someone on earth. Please read our beautiful frame-verse above. Much of what God does for you is lovingly done by your spirit guide, who is God’s hard-working minion under God’s close guidance. Your spirit guide is God’s hand in your life.

My dear beloved Thomas is as much a part of your life as I am. All the praise that you ever have given to me in fact belongs to him! Sometimes I can see Thomas at night, and the picture that heads this post is close to what my Thomas actually looks like. And so will all of us choose to look young, when we are again back in our eternal home. That semi-impatient look on his face is right, too, but he actually is a very nice guy. He simply is unwilling to suffer fools.

You wouldn’t have these articles each week if it were not for Thomas. I will say to him in my mind, “We need an article again,” and he will right away give me a topic and let me struggle with it for a couple of days; and then eventually he gives up and he helps me write it. Thomas always looks solemn. If I ever can get a smile from him, then that feels like a triumph! All of us meet with our guides at night while our bodies sleep. My formal meetings with Thomas mostly take place in a handsome cherry-paneled, windowless conference room in the astral plane, and usually Thomas won’t allow me to remember those meetings. Of late, we have been meeting with Jesus fairly often to talk about His planned website. And also, I suppose, to help me get over my being so in awe of the Lord.

This post is emphatically not Thomas’s idea. But I lost Monday and Tuesday of this past week because friends and clients kept calling me with birthday wishes, and also because of a small client crisis. Then it turned out that I was going to lose Wednesday and Thursday mornings to a luncheon and to a radio interview, so our usual leisurely blog-writing dance – which, frankly, I have come to enjoy – simply was not going to happen this week. We needed a topic that I could write about without much help from Thomas, and the only such topic that I could think of was… Thomas. It seemed to be past time, anyway. The only post that I could find that I had written primarily about him was written back when I was still crushing on his Thomas Jefferson lifetime, and he was irritated by my Jefferson obsession. He kept muttering, “Kid, get over it – you don’t know the half of it.”

And we know now that he was right about that! I will try not to make this all about Jesus, but they have become a close pair in my mind. The Thomas who was aligned with Jefferson, and the Jesus who was aligned with Christianity, have been replaced in my mind since the 6th of April by what irreverently, but with enough love to fill to bursting my whole heart, I have come to refer to as “The Boys.” I have actually met with my Thomas and Thomas Jefferson at the same time so I have seen that they are two different people. And the Jesus of today with olive skin, hazel eyes and dark curly hair, and often with a lighthearted smile, looks nothing at all like church-Jesus. He doesn’t talk or act like church-Jesus, either.

Now you are likely wondering whether I might have gone off the reservation. Has Thomas approved what I have written this week? What he has said, and I quote, is, “You control the hands.” Well, true. But if there were anything in this post that he disapproved of, he has ways by which he could emphatically say that.

My Thomas by Roberta GrimesI think that most of our spirit guides would prefer to work internally. But still, it is not hard to learn to recognize your guide’s separate voice. And once you can do that, you have a new best friend for life. My Thomas was entirely internal until he had to come out to me through a medium in early 2015 in order to persuade me to channel Liberating Jesus. He had to tell me then who he had been in his previous earth-lifetime as a strong-arm tactic, and for another couple of years he was willing to communicate with me through a medium, but I never got over that Jefferson connection. I am such a big Thomas Jefferson fan! I mean, the Declaration of Independence, for heaven’s sake? And in order to begin to prepare me to channel Liberating Jesus, Thomas had in 1990 channeled My Thomas, which is the finest piece of writing that I ever am going to do in my life. I really was having trouble getting past that Jefferson connection. So then one day Thomas abruptly stopped communicating through mediums altogether, and he insisted that I learn to communicate with him without any medium between us at all.  

Thomas would have much preferred to go back to meeting with me only at night, and with me never remembering those meetings except subliminally. But the cat was thoroughly out of the bag. He knew I wasn’t going to settle for anything less than direct communication. In fact, I bluntly told him so. Many people have been asking me how someone who isn’t a medium can develop the ability to recognize the voice of their own master guide, and it really is simple. In no special order, just:

  • Ask your guide for his name. Often he will simply suggest that you give him a name. Whatever name your guide gives you won’t be his real name, anyway.
  • Ask your guide to step outside of your physical body, so you can separate his voice from your thoughts. Generally your guide will move to just behind your dominant shoulder. I am left-handed, so Thomas is behind my left shoulder. Even if I am sitting against a wall or lying down.
  • Develop a habit of talking to your guide as a separate person. And always be very respectful. There is such a shortage of bodies now that in some cases – mine is an example – some remarkable beings are accepting assignments as spirit guides, so once they have completed their guidance duties they can have an avatar on earth at this crucial time that they can use for their own purposes.

Not only are you two people in one body, but in our case it is clear that Thomas is much the brighter, and also the stronger and the more powerful individual. The fact that together we present to the world as an old woman is a fake-out. Call it a bit of camouflage. This body contains an old woman and a very bright young man. Never judge a book by its cover.

I should add, too, that talking with your spirit guide isn’t like chatting with someone by phone. Thomas and I generally communicate in boluses of thought, with whole ideas sent rapidly to one another, which is the way that people communicate in the astral. And it is vastly more efficient than using words! Occasionally, though, Thomas will use words, and when he does, it is generally just one or a few distinct words. His voice sounds much older than he looks. For example, although I stopped watching television twenty-odd years ago, if I occasionally watch a longish computer video that he considers to be beneath our intelligence, I might unexpectedly hear a deep and venerable male voice say, “Stupid!”

And Jesus, when I have heard Him speak, doesn’t sound really older than He looks, but He has a mild, distinctive accent. He is still wrapping up His seventeen-hundred-year period of welcoming and healing the victims of Roman Christianity. So now He is starting to think about perhaps having a website that He can use to resurrect His Way, and He is thinking about perhaps even basing it on Liberating Jesus. Or so He said when He invited me to visit Him on April 6th. But, where did He get those ideas? It is first now that I am wondering. Since Jesus has lived without time and disconnected from the earth for the past two thousand years, I have been wondering where any of that might have come from. When I first asked Thomas, he shrugged. (And yes, I can tell when he shrugs.) But I persisted.

Together, Thomas and I have thought through the fact that Jesus knows about Liberating Jesus, of course, having channeled the book through me. And the idea for a new, simpler book first occurred to Him in the early nineteen-eighties of earth-time, when He seems to have first learned that A Course in Miracles is too challenging for most people to get their minds around. And here it becomes somewhat fascinating! Thomas tells me that they used My Thomas, which is a biography of Thomas Jefferson’s ten-year marriage that Thomas channeled through me in 1990 so they could make sure that I would be able to channel Jesus’s simplified version of The Course if He should later decide to channel a simplified version of The Course. And then for the next fifteen years, Thomas led me to do exhaustive additional research so Jesus would have in my mind a whole attic full of information to rummage through and use when He took over my mind and hands in 2015 to write Liberating Jesus. A plan which I then attempted to foil, when I tried to refuse to accept that honor.

So, is that where Jesus learned about websites? He found the concept in my mind? Thomas says that Jesus has just been dropping in with him on earth more lately, since he has a little more free time now, so He has been coming to know me a bit as well. He made the afterlife evidence that He found in my mind an Appendix to Liberating Jesus. And now here we are, doing a whole website on that subject. I don’t think that I had even opened Liberating Jesus in the past five years, but we have lately changed publishers, and I was surprised when I reviewed its new galleys to see how much Liberating Jesus follows the format of my other books. It had been Craig’s and my original thought to make discussing The Way of Jesus a part of seekreality.com, but then it seemed to us that it would be better if we took the time to give it a separate, linked website, since so many lapsed Christians of late are seeking a new spiritual home that is based in the teachings of Jesus. Thomas tells me that Jesus has been thinking about just taking over our idea Himself, and making our linked website His own.

There are downsides to being the most popular Man on earth. Every conceivable name for a website that includes the name of Jesus has already been taken. But Craig has managed to buy teachingsbyJesus.com, and we plan to go with that. We still don’t know what Jesus wants to do with His new website, and nor does Thomas really know, and Jesus has never even used a computer, so all of us will be feeling our way. All that I can think to do is to turn the teachings of Jesus into short educational videos, so I guess we will be starting with that.

But I do have one problem. Writing this post has made me think about the fact that very soon now my relationship with my beloved Thomas is going to end. My beautiful master spirit guide serves the Master, and only the Master. He has delayed his own ascension to the level of the Godhead for thousands of earth-years in order to serve Jesus. He became my spirit guide as another way to serve Jesus, just so once we had completed my spiritual earth-lessons I could be Jesus’s avatar on earth. And now once my Thomas has seen me through my life-review after I die, his service to me will honorably end. But I have fallen completely in love with my wonderful, beautiful Thomas! I cannot bear to lose him forever among a hundred billion other people in the endless astral. Take a good look at that impatient face that clearly does not suffer fools. What do you think he would say to my telling him how much I have completely fallen in love with him?

To my surprise, what he actually said was, “I know. That is what is supposed to happen.” He told me that once I am back in my greater mind, I will be male again, he and I will be close friends again, I will remember many very important things, and we will have a lot to laugh about. But meanwhile, he said I should finish this blog post.

Who Do You Say That I Am?

The church’s one foundation
Is Jesus Christ her Lord;
She is his new creation
By water and the Word.
From heaven he came and sought her
To be his holy bride;
With his own blood he bought her,
And for her life he died.
Samuel John Stone (1839-1900) from “The Church’s One Foundation” (1866)

It astonishes me to realize that no Christian reformer ever has thought to go all the way back to The Way of Jesus and start a fresh movement based upon His teachings alone. Surely the history has always been there! Those Roman Catacombs with their millions of burials entirely free of crosses have always been available to provide the evidence that a non-fear-based Christian theology was possible. And even as late as Miss Corwin’s day, and the time of those who taught Miss Corwin, there were scholars who thought as Jesus thought. But still, we have had only Protestant reformations that have tweaked, but never have very much changed the fear-based Roman religion that was built on the bloody wreckage of The Way that Jesus so hopefully began.

 My favorite modern theologian is my fellow Texan, Keith Giles, who writes an excellent blog that I follow at Patheos.com. Sometimes I will suspect that Keith and I might be on the same page on some issue, and I’ll be reading and thinking, “Preach it, Keith!” But he is a trained Christian minister, so he uses the whole Bible, while I am a tagalong of the first Apostles that Jesus charged with His Great Commission.

And so, in theory at least, I have never heard of the Apostle Paul. You know Paul, that resolute fellow who began as a persecutor of the followers of Jesus, but who saw the light (quite literally) soon after Jesus’s crucifixion? Paul was a relative latecomer who barely made it into the Christian Bible by writing all those earnest letters to the first churches planted at Corinth and elsewhere. And I am just some spiritual hobbyist that Jesus has very lately recruited when He took it into His hallowed head to go modern and teach twenty-first-century folks through an educational website.

We each meet with our own spirit guides most nights. And I have been telling my Thomas of late that I am still altogether clueless about what I am supposed to be doing with this website that he and Jesus want me to create. Thomas has been telling me that I should just do some videos based on Liberating Jesus. And, no worries. Once I get into it, Jesus will guide me. But I still feel stupid about doing this, so they have been working with me at night. A few mornings ago, I woke up with my own voice reciting in my mind what I think they mean to be the intro to Jesus’s website. I was saying something like, “Before the Crusades and the Inquisitions. Before the martyrs and the saints. Before Saint Paul and the Apostles, and before Christianity was even a religion, there was Jesus, the Man. Please join me as we sit at His feet and hear what Jesus has to say.” I thought, Hey, that sounds like a pretty good start!

For at least as long as I have been doing my Seek Reality podcast, I have been receiving emails from disaffected Christians. Nearly all of these folks were cradle-Christians who shared more or less my history. They were devout in childhood, and for much of their lives they attended churches where the pews were full. Still sincere as adults, they began to question dogmas like original sin and transubstantiation and a lot of other Christian ideas that frankly don’t make sense at all, and that have no basis in the teachings of Jesus. And as Catholics, especially, these people found that their questions weren’t getting intelligent answers. Indisputably, and despite the feeling that they were growing ever closer to the Jesus they had loved since childhood, these people – every one of them – were coming to reject the religion they had been following for their entire lives. And they were writing almost identical emails. Often literally word for word.

I have had hundreds of such emails, and I could answer them only by agreeing with the writers. I used to suggest they find Unity churches, but Unity has become more and more ossified into mostly studying the words of the Founding Fillmores and their friends, which is the last thing Charles and Myrtle Fillmore would have wanted. Of late, all I can do is to send these people PDFs of Liberating Jesus. In truth, until Jesus has a website of His own, there is no place where I can send them because every form of Christianity is, as a friend of mine disdainfully puts it, at best some form of “Paulianity.” Last Wednesday night I was interviewed by a wonderful radio host who used the same term, and who actually had just read both The Fun of Dying and Liberating Jesus. Which was a refreshing change, since most interviewers hardly bother to even open the books. I’m sure I had heard that term before, but I don’t get out much. And I do feel for Paul. Like me, he had had an experience of light. Like me, he was close to people who knew Jesus, but he was not in their inner circle. But still, he tried his best. And he did channel some wonderful passages, especially 1Cor 13. He was close, but in the end no cigar for Paul.  

I seem to be meeting with Jesus and Thomas on many nights now as the planning for the Lord’s website takes shape, although Thomas won’t allow me to remember these meetings. Jesus really does want  to tell His own story, so He can separate Himself from the Roman Christian Jesus that seems to be fixed in people’s minds. But He is willing to allow His story to be given just as a link. His teachings are to be the focus. Thomas tells me that when the Lord was on earth as Jesus, He was always keenly interested in knowing what the people were saying about Him, which is not surprising when you know His actual story. And Thomas in that lifetime was a random civilian and not an official disciple, so he could come and go anonymously as Jesus’s spy among the populace. A little of this actually made it into the canonical Gospels. For example:

“Now when Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He was asking His disciples, ‘Who do people say that the Son of Man is?’ And they said, “Some say John the Baptist; and others, Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah, or one of the other prophets.” He said to them, ‘But who do you yourselves say that I am?’ Simon Peter answered, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the living God’” (MT 16:13-16).

Two points should be made here. The first, of course, is that this is yet another reference to reincarnation that slipped past the First Nicaean Councilors’ efforts to remove all such references from the Bible as they assembled it. Clearly Jesus was talking about reincarnation, as were His disciples. And second, what follows is the most blatant piece of anachronistic nonsense that was added to the Gospels by First Nicaea. This is what the Roman church-builders would have dearly loved for Jesus to have said during His lifetime. He never said it, so they simply made it up three hundred years later:

“‘And I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven’” (MT 16:18-19).

It is clear that Jesus never said any of this. For one thing, “Petros,” would be a pun for “rock” in Greek, but Jesus spoke Aramaic. There was no idea of a “church” in Jesus’s day. Jesus never referred to “Hades,” nor to the gates of Hades. Jesus referred to the kingdom of heaven as an internal concept, and not as something physical that would have had keys. And He certainly would not have felt able to personally empower any human being to bind or to loose anything in heaven! But, so it goes. When you are a fourth-century Roman councilor, and your boss is a Roman Emperor, you try very hard to do your part.

 The teachings of Jesus are masterful in their power. One thing that we are discussing in these nightly meetings that I am not being allowed to remember beyond keeping the barest gist of some of them is the fact that Jesus’s teachings have multiple levels of depth, and this is true of even His simplest statements. On the surface, a child can understand them. Take, for example, “Why do you call me good? God alone is good” (LK 18:19). Or, “Unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven” (MT 18:3). Both are easy statements for even a child to read and to find understandable. And yet in fact, each statement is spiritually so profound that a study group could spend hours discussing each of them and never exhaust the possibilities. A lot of what Jesus says is like that, and most of His sayings are in addition interrelated. 

I have done very little studying of any religion other than Christianity, so a recent Patheos article about the Buddha’s wife caught my eye. Effectively, it suggests that enlightenment for a Buddhist comes from being closeted away from people and away from human life, which is astonishing, considering the fact that we enter these earth-lives specifically in order to experience the spiritual stresses of human life, and to use them to push against in order to grow spiritually. In fact, Jesus spent the first part of His life studying how best to use the stresses of human life to better effect our spiritual growth, and then He designed His teachings to make the best use of our everyday stressors to elevate our consciousness vibrations. Ever since I read that article, I have been thinking about that difference – meditating on it – and wondering. How is it possible that you might choose to either more deeply engage with the world, or to withdraw from it altogether, and still arrive at the same more spiritually elevated place?

When Jesus walked the earth two thousand years ago, He was such a very young man! He died away from this world at only thirty-three, and as I read over His teachings again, I am reminded of how very young in earth-years He was. And yet, how wise. For His earth-years, He was extraordinarily wise. He had studied humankind so closely and with such a specific purpose in mind that by the time He was thirty years old, He had figured out the primary role of Consciousness… or else He had learned it directly from God. And He used His knowledge of how Consciousness works to create teachings which can raise human consciousness vibrations with amazing efficiency. Had the Romans not gotten in the way, the kingdom of God would have overspread the earth long since.

But then, of course, came the stamping-out of the followers of The Way of Jesus, and then the Crusades and the Inquisitions, and millions of people were made to suffer and die for their crime of following Jesus. My Thomas has become concerned that I might want to slack off on working soon, my being on the older side after all, so he has made sure to tell me about the tortures especially, the hot irons and the slow-broken limbs, the parents made to watch their children being tortured and murdered one by one. And Jesus Himself personally tended to the most damaged of the sufferers in His rehabilitation gardens that filled the afterlife during those awful times. After death we never sleep, so there were whole centuries when Jesus quite literally did nothing else but lovingly care for screaming and suffering people. And since Thomas was His close confidante through all of that, my own spirit guide has been able to assure me that the Lord never has said a single unkind word, not even against the torturers. And Thomas has laid all of this on me just so I won’t slack off now. No, I get it. I do. Jesus abundantly deserves His own website. I am completely inadequate to the task, but since He has asked me to do it, I will try.  

Jesus came to a younger, more innocent world two thousand years ago. And since then, there can be no question that He has dealt with the very worst fruits of humankind. Toward the end of His earthly life, His followers said to Him, “‘We know that You know all things, and that You have no need for anyone to question You; this is why we believe that You came forth from God.’ ‘Do you now believe?’ Jesus replied. ‘A time is coming and in fact has come when you will be scattered, each to your own home. You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me. I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world’” (JN 16:30-33). Between the day when He spoke those words and now, Jesus has endured more personal pain in healing the awful pain of others than any of us can imagine. He has indeed overcome the world! And soon, He will return in what will be an unexpected sort of Second Coming. Although in truth, of course, He never really left.

Elect from every nation,
Yet one o’er all the earth;
Her charter of salvation,
One Lord, one faith, one birth;
One holy name she blesses,
Partakes one holy food,
And to one hope she presses,
With every grace endued.
– Samuel John Stone (1839-1900) from “The Church’s One Foundation” (1866)

Faith vs. Knowing

I wonder as I wander out under the sky,
How Jesus the Savior did come for to die.
For poor on’ry people like you and like I…
I wonder as I wander out under the sky.

When Mary birthed Jesus ’twas in a cow’s stall,
With wise men and farmers and shepherds and all.
But high from God’s heaven a star’s light did fall,
And the promise of ages it then did recall.

– John Jacob Niles (1892-1980), collected in “Songs of the Hill-Folk” (1934)

In fact, it was the Roman version of Christianity that came for to die, and it breaks my heart to say it. I have loved Christianity since I was a child! I had an experience of light when I was eight, and from that night on I refused to spend my Sunday mornings with singing and a box of crayons. After that, I wanted Reverend Turrell’s sermons, and I made sure my family never missed a Sunday. I was going to be a minister when I grew up. I majored in early Christian history in college, and it was only when I studied the First Council of Nicaea under dear Miss Corwin, a professor who looked to me back then to be old enough to have been in attendance, that I first began to question whether my beloved Christianity might actually not be the religion that Jesus began when He launched His disciples out into the world, saying, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Go, therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, teaching them to follow all that I commanded you; and behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (MT 28:18-20).

Of course, I know much better now. From the moment the Roman Emperor Constantine cast his eye upon the young and lovely Way of Jesus and chose her as his own, and then he began to remove from her and destroy every version of the Lord’s Way except for the awful Jesus-died-for-our-sins idea that Constantine thought that he could use to further his absolute power and control, the fear-based Roman remnant that remained of Christianity was doomed to die at some point. The fact that you and I are here to witness its dying is a painful coincidence of history. Nothing more.  

Having lately come to see Constantine’s seizure of Jesus’s Way more from Jesus’s perspective might give us perhaps a different view of it. My Thomas tells me that at first, from the Lord’s perspective Constantine’s takeover of Jesus’s spiritual movement produced a flood of victims. Thomas took an earth-lifetime at the start of it so He could report back to Jesus about what was happening on the ground, and it was then that Thomas insists to me that he died on a cross after two days of singing. Of course, I still insist to him that his memory is faulty because you cannot sing on a cross. You can barely breathe!

My own  view of pre-Roman Christian history through the eyes of anti-Roman Miss Corwin was of a vibrant and diverse spiritual movement. And Miss Corwin was right! There were millions of burials in the catacombs in Rome, for example, in the first four centuries after the death of Jesus, and with Jesus generally pictured in the grave-art as clean-shaven and with a baby goat around His shoulders. And with not a single depiction of a cross to be found. The Way of Jesus as He Himself taught it was based entirely in love and forgiveness. In caring for the goats as well as the sheep. But Constantine could have used none of that in his plan for ancient-world domination

And history is written by its winners. I learned from other college professors that the Romans under Constantine and his successors had “organized” early Christian beliefs in a “helpful” way at the First Council of Nicaea in 325 and at the six other first-millennium ecumenical councils, when in fact what they did was to destroy millions of the followers of Jesus so brutally that Jesus spent the next thousand years loving the followers of His Way and the victims of the various Inquisitions and Crusades back into spiritual health. At some point during those first few centuries of Christianity, my Thomas encountered an incarnation of me as a teenage boy when we died together in a Roman massacre of followers of The Way.   

My Thomas and I have talked about the coming death of Christianity. He is, shall we say, frankly unsentimental about the religion that I once loved. He tells me that at first, Jesus and those around Him found it impossible to believe that this most extreme of all possible views of the crucifixion of Jesus could become the basis of a whole religion that would lay deep roots and last for so long! And Jesus was so preoccupied by love and concern for the victims who continued to pour into His afterlife rehabilitation gardens that He had little attention to spare. And so the centuries passed, until we have come now to what is apparently the natural demise of the religion that the Romans installed seventeen centuries ago in place of The Way of Jesus. 

So I have been writing along here, and come to the place in this post that seemed to require bullet points and something about how Covid hastened the decline of Christianity in recent years. But then those bullets would of course include a lot more than Covid. As I was busily assembling them, Thomas called to my mind a vision of my childhood church on the morning of my father’s funeral.

My father died more than thirty years ago. He was much older than my mother, and he was a deacon of my childhood church. His funeral service filled every pew. I had married a Catholic and converted by then, but I gave the message, wearing red because it was my father’s favorite color, and I recall that full and vibrant church on the morning of my father’s funeral. But when my mother followed him twenty years later, and of course still well before Covid, we had a graveside service. I doubt that there were more than twenty people in attendance, even though she had been a more important figure in that church than my father ever was.   

An article about “the catastrophic decline in religious faith and what to do about it” is perhaps worth reading. It ascribes the decline during those two decades largely to cultural issues, and reading it makes me think that the solutions this article prescribes would be like shoveling pebbles against the sea.

My Thomas tells us now that this recent dramatic decline in the religion that I loved is not only about the end of Christianity. He says that the era of humanmade gods is coming to an end for all the old religions. The time when having faith alone was sufficient is passing for humankind, which means that the era of all religions and religious dogmas is coming to an end. The age is dawning now when we want to know the truth, and nothing less will satisfy us! As Jesus said, “If you hold to My teaching, you are really My disciples; then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (JN 8:31-32).

Which was an odd way for Jesus to phrase it, when you pause and think about it. But Thomas says now that The Way of Jesus which has been delayed for seventeen hundred years is actually meant to be freedom from all religions. Religious dogmas and beliefs are a poor substitute for knowing the truth about reality. Mere faith and beliefs are very thin gruel! If faith alone is to be the standard, then you might be talked into believing anything, even if it turns out to be nonsense. But the Way of Jesus was never intended to be a religion in the first place! It was Constantine and the Romans who added the dogmas and made it into a religion. The Way of Jesus is meant to be a way of thinking and living so as to more rapidly transform yourself, and then to transform the whole material world and to bring God’s kingdom on earth. As above, so below. Jesus told us all of this perfectly clearly in the Gospels. And He intends now to reiterate it in His website.

So the human need for any religions at all is ending, as we come to understand the truth about our own eternal selves. The religions were about the gods that we invented to comfort ourselves when we were powerless against the great unknown. Those old religions had fear-based dogmas, which was what made them good instruments for mass control. And the dogmas that we made up were often crazy dogmas. Take, for example, the whimsical notion that God created one man and one woman in the Garden of Eden, and then arbitrarily God told them not to eat the fruit of one particular tree. So then of course they ate that fruit anyway, and thereby they estranged all of humankind from a whimsically angry God. Until in the fullness of time, in order to reconcile humankind again to Himself, that God sent His Only Begotten Son to die as the perfect sacrifice to Himself, so now God can forgive all the rest of us for Adam’s having eaten that apple. And if there is any loving parent to whom any of that makes any sense, then I cannot imagine that parent!

These were all human ideas, of course. Every religious dogma is a human idea. None of them has anything to do with God.

And there is indeed an all-powerful God. But the genuine God at the highest aspect of consciousness will not be framed or defined by any human-made religious dogma. The genuine God will not submit to any human-made religion at all, and nor will God submit to any human idea of how God must be worshiped. God needs no human sacrifice! God will not submit to a human name, nor dwell in any human building. God said to the ancient Hebrews, “Be still, and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10). God speaks to and dwells in each of us. It is God in Whom we live and move and have our being. But if any human being ever claims to speak for God, then know that you are hearing wind.

And something has just occurred to me. I have just now said to Thomas, “But, wait a minute. Are you saying that two thousand years ago, Jesus brought us His Way to replace all religions? He intended to replace all religions, even back then?” Thomas didn’t say anything. Then he smiled.

If Jesus had wanted for any wee thing,
A star in the sky, or a bird on the wing,
Or all of God’s angels in heav’n for to sing,
He surely could have it, ’cause he was the King.

I wonder as I wander out under the sky,
How Jesus the Savior did come for to die.
For poor on’ry people like you and like I…
I wonder as I wander out under the sky.
– John Jacob Niles (1892-1980), collected in “Songs of the Hill-Folk” (1934)

Kindness

The quality of mercy is not strained;
It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven
Upon the place beneath. It is twice blest;
It blesseth him that gives and him that takes:
‘T is mightiest in the mightiest; it becomes
The throned monarch better than his crown:
His sceptre shows the force of temporal power,
The attribute to awe and majesty,
Wherein doth sit the dread and fear of kings;
But mercy is above this sceptred sway;
It is enthronèd in the hearts of kings,
It is an attribute to God himself.
– William Shakespeare (1564-1616), from “The Merchant of Venice”

What has stuck in my mind for the past three months is watching Jesus bless a much taller man who had just died. Every detail of that moment was astounding to me. I have analyzed it from every angle, and learned from it, perhaps even more than Jesus intended for me to learn from it. In the end, I have concluded that the most saintly virtue of all – the one that really sets Jesus apart – is not love after all, but it is instead a titanic but still entirely natural, a deep and instinctive and all-encompassing kindness. 

It was kindness that made the Neolithic incarnation of my spirit guide’s younger brother which Jesus was long ago feel compelled to hunt for survivors of a massacre, and then find a way to save a woman and her children from the carnage all around them. Kindness that made that same Being feel unable to bear ascending to the Godhead unless He could find a way for everyone else in the world who ever would be born also more efficiently become perfected. So He took an unprecedented earth-lifetime from out of the Godhead in order to study us and figure out a way to make that same process happen more efficiently for us all. Et voila – in due course, we have the Jesus of today.

We flatter ourselves that such extraordinary kindness must be just a natural human trait. But sadly, it is not normal at all. In fact, the opposite is true. I am currently on a business trip, and a few days ago I missed a turn on an unfamiliar road. There were a few options that I might have taken to seek a way to turn around, so I hesitated. The driver behind me blared his horn. To make sure I fully understood his displeasure, he continued to blare it until after he had passed me, when he gave a final, separate blare. And on another day, amazingly, the driver behind me began to lean on his horn the instant the light turned green, even though he could see that the road was blocked by a gigantic tractor-trailer that was halfway through making its turn. When people are riding alone in their cars and they have a chance to show who they are to people they never will see again, they enjoy using their horns in full measure.

It is odd that we think of love as more important than kindness. Since I watched Jesus demonstrate to me in April what genuine kindness actually is, I have been meditating on the differences between love and kindness. In the end, all that I can come up with is that kindness is a characteristic, while love is an emotion. The dictionary definition of kindness is “the quality of being friendly, generous, and considerate,” which makes it seem to be almost a throwaway; while love is “an intense feeling of deep affection.”  Love is big and showy! Jesus tells us to love because He had worked out by the period of his public teaching that it is emotion that governs consciousness, which is the base creative energy. And love is the highest consciousness vibration. That is why He made such a big deal of love!

But an emotion can actually be a dangerous thing. And emotions are always subjective. Think about it:

  • Emotions are personal. I know how I feel, but you can have no idea!
  • Emotions are unpredictable. Even if you can surmise that, yes indeed, I do feel love, there is no way to say what my feeling of love might move me to decide to do.
  • Emotions are fickle. I used to love, but now I find that I really don’t love so much anymore.

How many times have lovers ended up destroying the beloved? We have talked here about kinds of love, but all those conversations are unsatisfactory, because while they help us to define different kinds of love, still they don’t solve the problem of how easily love can go wrong. Love is an emotion. And emotions are ever-changing by their very nature.

Or what about someone who might be duly-elected in a country without a Constitution as sound as the one that blesses the United States, who is sure that he loves his country’s people more than anyone else ever could, and therefore he knows what is best for them? So he declares himself to be dictator for life. Then he closes all the banks for a week, and he open them again with accounts in the name of every man, woman, and child in that country, citizens and illegal aliens alike, and each account contains precisely twenty-five thousand, one hundred and thirty-eight dollars and forty-seven cents. An equal division of that nation’s liquid wealth, to the penny. Everyone from the formerly richest on down is now equal in liquid net worth. There have been more foolish, misguided, and nonsensical things done in the name of great love and at the height of passion than perhaps for any other cause.

So in the end, it is day-by-day kindness that must do all our heaviest lifting. While love is hot, kindness is cool. While love is passionate, kindness is caring. And kindness at least gives us some objective standard, a way to measure the effects that our acts have on people. The more I think about it, the more I realize that you could justify just about any barbaric and monstrous act as something that you were doing out of great love. Not enough food and no way to get more? Then you kill off all the grandparents of course, and you feed them to the children. Can’t have babies starving! Many parents who commit suicide will take their children with them, out of love. In fact, just weeks ago a woman in a Midwestern state came home to find that her husband had committed suicide. Whereupon, she drowned her children in a nearby lake and then killed herself. If great love is the standard, then even the greatest cruelties can make some kind of sense. But if kindness is the standard, then all of that is nonsensical.

Which brings us to what I witnessed on the night of April 6th. After death, we can appear to others how ever we like, and normally nowadays Jesus looks very different from what you might expect. He appears now to be a kind of universal everyman. My oldest grandchild was adopted from Colombia, and Jesus’s skin is my grandson’s beautiful reddish-golden shade. He looks to be about thirty years old, with hazel eyes, a prominent nose, curly hair, full lips, and a short, efficient beard. He is perhaps five feet, ten inches tall, and I think of His look as what you would get if you put the entire human race through a blender. I have asked Thomas if that is how He looked in His lifetime as Jesus. Thomas tells me it is more that Jesus is experimenting with looking this way for the time that He is now moving toward, when Roman Christianity at last is no more and His life will be teaching in all the realms.

So we were sitting on that astral riverbank, feeding the fish, and Jesus was talking, and unexpectedly He simply transformed into pale church-Jesus, slightly taller and with blue eyes and light-brown, shoulder-length hair. I have trouble looking at Him directly, so I was aware of His change in appearance only when He stopped talking and stood and went to greet the little group of people that was approaching us.

My first though when Jesus left Thomas and me to welcome those Christians who had just come home was that this was something private that we were not supposed to see. Now, though, I feel that perhaps He was calling on me to watch Him do this. For some reason that I cannot fathom, this Being whose perfect goodness is beyond all comprehension has decided that I am worthy of the task of telling His story to the world in a website. It feels now as if He was saying to me something like, “Watch Me do this. Learn something new.” And as I think of it now, I remind myself that there have been tens of billions of Christians who have lived and died in the past seventeen hundred years. Tens of billions. With a B. Not all of them have wanted to be blessed and healed by Jesus at the ends of their earth-lives. But if even a tiny fraction of them – say, only several million of them – have thought this would be a special moment for them, then Jesus has put off whatever else He might have done among the endless fun things that there are to do in the astral plane, suspending His own life for seventeen hundred years in order to do this for every Christian who has wanted to meet Him and receive His blessing.

The people in the group were forming a line, and the first man in line was very tall. My guess is that he was six feet, five or six inches tall, and he clearly had been someone important in life. He wore a crisp white shirt without a tie, open at the neck, with creased dark slacks and shiny shoes. He started to fall to his knees before the Lord, but Jesus said, “Peace, my son,” and He slipped His hands beneath the man’s arms at either side. He didn’t try to lift him. It was a signal, and the man regained his feet. Jesus was smiling up at his face. Thomas and I stood maybe twenty feet away and to the side, so we could observe it all. Jesus then put both His hands way up on top of the man’s head and said, “Bless you, my son!” with a bit of a giggle in his voice, and He grinned. I think He was being playful to acknowledge how tall the man was, and to put him at ease about his almost-kneeling faux-pas. And the man said, “Thank You, Sir.” Thank you not just for your blessing, but even more for treating me as an equal. And they stood smiling at one another. That man could joyously grin down at church-Jesus, and he could look Him in the eye as I still cannot, until he was the one who ended that moment and made way for the next person in line.

And that was nothing, right? But I can’t stop thinking about it. Replaying every detail of it. That Jesus the risen Lord has done all of that so sweetly and gently and made that moment so perfect for even a million people, and perhaps for billions of people over seventeen centuries defies my imagination. He could get others to dress up as church-Jesus in His place. No one would know. When I said that to Thomas, he said, “But He would know.” The “Jesus” who appears during near-death experiences and other personal dreams and visions is a presentation by our own spirit guides, who know best what we would need. Whatever “Jesus” says during your own NDE is said by your guide and not by Jesus. But if you were devoted to Jesus during your lifetime, He won’t send an imposter to meet you when you die.

I had thought that after fifty years of research, I had nothing more to learn in this field, but Jesus had this one more lesson to teach. The fruit of spiritual growth is not love at all. Love is what produces spiritual growth, by raising our personal consciousness vibrations. No, the true fruit of spiritual growth is kindness. And when you realize that, and you begin to look for it in people, you glimpse it everywhere. Yes, there are low-vibration bullies who use their auto horns to try to make our driving miserable, but most drivers are more courteous. All my clients own closely-held businesses, and I have repeatedly seen them do kindnesses here and there for needy employees. My sister’s teenage grandson is taller than I am, but still he happily plays hide-and-seek with his much younger sister, and he cooks with her because it makes her happy. When you look for them, you see these little kindnesses. And I realize now that the ultimate fruit of spiritual growth is not angelic purity. No, it is this perfect, gigantic, all-encompassing kindness that can make Jesus willing without complaint to delay the advent of His own Way on earth for almost twenty centuries while He patiently waits out Roman Christianity, and He heals every one of that religion’s victims. And my Thomas tells me that never has Jesus even privately complained.

I have been trying so hard for my entire life to ever better understand Jesus. I majored in studying Him in college. I have read the Gospels until I can recite whole sections of them by heart. I have met Jesus in person. He has told me His story, and it makes a lot more sense than the Christian version of His story ever could. Sometimes I think I really do begin to understand the genuine Jesus. But then I recall the blissful peace of His face as He smilingly welcomed home that umpteen-billionth victim of this religion that has delayed the advent of Jesus’s Way on earth for the past two thousand years. I recall the perfect joy in His face, and I see how happy He was in that moment. And I realize that I still cannot understand Jesus as a Man at all.

And earthly power doth then show likest God’s
When mercy seasons justice. Therefore, Jew,
Though justice be thy plea, consider this,
That, in the course of justice, none of us
Should see salvation: we do pray for mercy;
And that same prayer doth teach us all to render
The deeds of mercy. I have spoke thus much
To mitigate the justice of thy plea;
Which if thou follow, this strict court of Venice
Must needs give sentence ‘gainst the merchant there.

– William Shakespeare (1564-1616), from “The Merchant of Venice”