Salvation and The Way out of Identity with Politics and Religion.

Outward political and religious education and educators use outward forms, prescriptions, practices, ideologies (theologies), and institutions to gather people whose conscious is needful of being anchored in and whose conscience is needful of being informed by outward forms

A conscious anchored in and a conscience informed by outward forms, people, and institutions is the meaning of behind the words “Worldly,” “Carnal,” “Bodily,” or “Natural Reason or Faculties”.  These terms illustrate further the nature of the phrase in italics.  

In this political season, in the United States, there will be many professors, politicians, ministers, preachers, and priests (including the Pope), theologians, and ideologues, of outward political and religious forms competing with one another to gather people whose conscious is anchored in and whose conscience is informed by outward forms into their outward prescriptions. There is a competition to bring people into identity, meaning, purpose, with these outward prescriptions so that people will act in conformity and submission to outward political and religious platforms and empower those outward forms by establishing them as the ruling forms over the people in both political (governmental) and religious institutions.

Many of us affirm a different way. This way is of a conscious anchored in and a conscience informed by the immediate experience of inward Presence itself so that identity, meaning, and purpose is in and through this direct inward experience itself. In this experience, people gather together and have identity with the inward intuitive way which is not conditioned upon identity with outward forms. In this way, unity is established in the experience itself without respect to or conformity with any outward political and religious forms, persons, or institutions.

This way is the meaning behind to the words “Heaven,” Spiritual,” and “Intuitive.”These words illustrate further the nature of the experience and clarify the meaning and significance behind the underlined phrase.

To those who are weary of the outward way of faith in and identity with outward forms, people, and institutions, there is an inward way wherein people are gathered together directly under the inward experience of Presence itself and are of a faith in and identity with the inward experience of Infinite Being itself. In this experience, Presence itself guides and rules the actions of the individual and the gathering … inwardly and without reference to outward or representational similitudes, practices, traditions, forms, people, groups, and institutions.

There is no special practice or outward form to submit to or identify with to know this grace and promise of a life unhinged from a way of being or existence bond to outward forms and aligned with an existence illuminated inwardly by the power of inward Presence itself anchored in your conscious and informing your conscience. Just take a waiting posture while living your life.Just wait upon the unfolding of Presence itself in your mind and heart and grace will come upon you, through the power of Presence itself, and you will experience the falling away of the outward nature and submission to the outward political and religious forms people strive to impose upon other people. You will experience your conscious and conscience gathered into a way of existence, a way of being, that is of a new and different nature than that of those whose conscious is anchored in and whose conscience is informed by outward forms. You will come into eternity … that is, infinity itself. A new birth into a new life; a new way of existence that is not of those who profess outward prescriptions of peace and unity in this life and on this earth.

We commit and commend to everyone that the Word is born in your heart, and thereby you may be preserved from subjection to any thing outward.

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Comment by Forrest Curo on 12th mo. 9, 2015 at 4:57pm

Not so simple. Many people express real inward spiritual connection through the language of external forms, mentally associate their own spiritual intuitions with the external forms they've been given.

It is also possible to verbally promote inward spiritual access in much the same spirit as other people recommend outward forms. (Much of Zen practice, of course, is intended to get people past exactly that kind of obstacle.)

I suspect the reality is that most everyone who knows Spirit at all receives its messages in the context of their various mental associations -- or as Erich Schiffmann said, roughly ~ Of course divinely inspired thoughts will normally seem like your own thoughts; who else's mind would you be thinking them with?

The thought that these thoughts are not yours -- or that you aren't thinking any thoughts, likewise -- can also be easily thunk, yes? (I think the important point is not to credit yourself, blame yourself, or assign said thoughts too much or too little credit. It's all a Gift.)

Comment by Keith Saylor on 12th mo. 9, 2015 at 6:03pm

I understand exactly what you are saying Forrest. However, for many of us the experience is "so simple" even though not for others, like you, who do not share that experience. I am one of those who verbally promotes inward spiritual. I do it all the time. I just do not commend outward forms. The way of outward forms has been tried throughout the history of man. There is another way. I understand you do not know or agree with that other way. However, I am not subject to your understanding. Also, yes you can thinking about thinking, however, living in the activity of thinking and thinking about thinking are two different ways of being. By the power of direct experience of Presence itself in my conscious and conscience I no longer exist in outward forms and it is mine to share that experience. It is not mine to bestow it on others. 

Comment by Forrest Curo on 12th mo. 9, 2015 at 7:08pm

Keith, I do not believe you "understand exactly what I am saying", because you seem to believe that what I do experience is different from what you experience. I think the form in which we receive what we experience may differ; you may even be more closely connected to what-it-is -- But there aren't two different 'things' of the sort to be experienced, as I'm sure you can see.

You also think I object to trying to get there without outer means. What I am trying to say is that God is present to people who do that (as well as people who think it's all a shuck) in a way that they aren't so specifically conscious of -- but which none the less will be the best way God knows to bring them closer. If you know better than God what suits others, go for it!

We are certainly agreed that the religion biz is often  like having a person offer to sell you bottles of air: "You need this stuff to breathe!!!" I'm just trying to say, if they keep breathing that'll work too...

Comment by Keith Saylor on 12th mo. 9, 2015 at 7:17pm

Thank you Forrest. I appreciate what you said about "there aren't two different things of the sort to be experienced." I'm going to spend some time with your response when I get home so I can really sink down into it and give it the attention it deserves.

Comment by Keith Saylor on 12th mo. 10, 2015 at 1:16am

Forrest, I've read and re-read your two responses and it still seems to me you and I are expressing different things. However, maybe if we talk through it a little more I will come to see I am incorrect. It is not the first time and will not be the last that I misunderstand what another is expressing. When someone tells me I have misunderstood or misrepresented what they are saying, I try hard to defer to them and not press them relative to what I think they are expressing.

I am engaging in free writing here. I am doing this to see if I can get at that "thing" which I think is different between us, although I concede maybe is not.  

You wrote that I believe what you experience is different from my experience. I am assuming the shared experience you are referring to is of a conscious anchored in and a conscience informed by the immediate experience of inward Presence itself? Is that correct?

To go further. I have written about two distinct ways of experience or being. One way, to say it in different words, is being or consciousness founded upon representations of the unrepresented and the other way is being or consciousness founded upon direct experience of the unrepresented itself. George Fox, in his "The Great Mystery ..." writes these words that are precious to me personally:

"Now notion is imagination, and that is not properly called light, ... for light is not notion, but is the thing itself that is from Christ."

The notion or representation of the unrepresented is not direct experience of the unrepresented. In other words, normally consciousness is founded upon thoughts, feelings, perceptions, sensations, etc. A conscious anchored in and a conscience informed by unmediated Presence itself is a distinct was of being.

 We can think about (represent) thoughts, we can think about (represent) the activity of thinking, however, thoughts about the activity of  thinking are not the activity of thinking itself. Once we enter into and live in the activity of thinking we are being in a distinct and different way than thinking about thinking. The thought or mediation used to reflect or mirror the activity of thinking may admittedly give a "sense" (as of seeing through stained glass), however, that sense is not the experience of  the activity of thinking itself or the unrepresented itself or infinity itself. 

The direct and unmediated experience of a conscious anchored in and a conscience informed by unrepresented Presence itself is a distinct way of being from a conscious anchored in and a conscience informed by outward forms even when those outward forms or similitudes bring individuals right up against Presence itself. To know the "thing itself" the "light itself" is the gift of Christ and is not of the nature of reflection, mediation, or forms. The forms are not the gift. 

George Fox also writes in "The Great Mystery ..."

"... as for ecclesiastical discipline [outward forms], it is got up since the days of the apostles, in the apostacy, which shuts up the kingdom of heaven against men, that which they should have believed in ; that is, the light Christ hath enlightened them withal, which is the key.

I am saying outward  forms or meditations or similitudes distract from the experience of unmediated Presence itself by their very nature. It seems to me you are saying outwards forms "work too." It may be we are in disagreement here depending on what you mean by "work."

Free thinking even more - you write:

"You also think I object to trying to get there without outer means. What I am trying to say is that God is present to people who do that (as well as people who think it's all a shuck) in a way that they aren't so specifically conscious of -- but which none the less will be the best way God knows to bring them closer. If you know better than God what suits others, go for it!"

If you are saying inward Light is present even in those whose conscious is so overshadowed with identity to outward forms that they are unaware of its working within them ... I agree. It just doesn't seem to me that is what you are meaning. One thing I can tell you is I do not pretend to know better what suits others. As I regularly say, I am sharing an experience. If people reject it that is fine with me. It is not for me to judge their conscience. 

Finally, I want to highlight that the my original post is not just about religion; it is also about politics and civil government. The message is that identity with political and religious outward forms are of a conscious anchored in and a conscience informed by reflected or refracted being and that there is another way of being the exists without regard to these religious and political outward forms and that is guided directly by the experience of the inward Light itself illuminating the conscious and informing the conscious. That experience is open to anyone just by the simple act of waiting.

Anyway, these random thoughts (it is late and I had a long day in the field) are just thrown out there for you to response as you will in hopes that we may eventually better understand one another. I look forward to deeper discussion.

Comment by Forrest Curo on 12th mo. 10, 2015 at 1:52am

Experience of what-It-Is as it Isses...

My wife Anne, our neighbor across the hall, & me were out on this old building's back walkway around sunset this evening.

We've got different ideas about what's happening to produce this experience than people from some ancient civilizations (not necessarily all!) but we're all seeing this sky with something like a colorful striped blanket stretched along the horizon. Anybody who goes outside nearby around the same time of day is also going to see that. Some people will pay attention; some will ignore it for 'more urgent' matters; some will have words in different languages for what this looks like.

Margaret used to advise a male photographer, at his request, about color settings in editing his photos ( She & Anne agree that he really screwed up a couple photos by ignoring what she told him, though I couldn't say.) Anne does the sort of paintings you could walk right into -- but since her catarct surgery she's increasingly troubled by unpredictably drifting stuff inside her eye. I can tell a fire engine from a tree; but I'm unusually insensitive to some reds (which look dark to me.) I can also see clearly in what people like Anne & Margaret would call 'the dark.' We're all agreed that it's gorgeous! I'm wearing a pair of eyeglasses because without them I'd see a blurry sunset... If either of them put my glasses on, they'd get dizzy.

There's a real 'something' out there, a pattern of different wavelengths of light getting scattered different ways by droplets of water here & there... Most people would see it a whole lot better if they got out of their houses, cars, etc. It doesn't particularly matter what you think about it -- but most people will have a thought or two, like "Okay, can we go in and eat now?" Astronomy would not enhance the experience much -- although knowing when Venus is likely to be hanging up there can be a plus...

You're talking about a real 'Some-Something'. It's impossible to be conscious at all without experiencing that reality in some form; but not everybody will experience it the same way, have the same ideas about it, believe that they do-or-don't need special practices to better focus on that...

What I keep trying to get across: The fact that people experience God in different ways and forms can't be contrary to God's intention.

This doesn't mean that the way they experience this now is the way that will always be right for them; it does mean that whatever it is should be accepted as the best each particular person can manage, for now.

I'm blathering over-late -- to bed, sorry!!!

Comment by Kirby Urner on 12th mo. 10, 2015 at 2:10am

Connecting to the William Rogers discussion / debate, I suppose what's open to investigation is, given X individuals all deeply sourced in the Spirit, fully commanded by the Inner Christ (St. Augustine:  the Teacher) or whatever, how will it look when those X individuals are committed to some Business in/of the World? 

First, is that an oxymoron, to suggest they would want to participate in the World? 

We've all heard the phrase "going in to go out" and truly it does not seem as if God is uncommitted to Creation.  God is fully engaged, and continues to reveal.  We're in his Image, caught up in the Big Dream, or whatever one calls it (Universe?).

In expectantly waiting for leadings, we're not just looking for new ways to view our own navels.  So no, it's not unlikely that those fueled by a direct experience of the eternal, will nevertheless want to wade into worldly affairs.  People who sit in full lotus for hours a day may also have management responsibilities in their temple.  The world does not run itself.  God uses us to make it happen.

I'd say there are two liberties at stake, both worth protecting. 

(A) If a Friend should feel led to "peel away" or "peel off" (a term from aviation), lets not rush to condemn this as evidence of egotistical selfishness. On the other hand,

(B) if Foxonian Friends want to glom together and build their George Fox University (which exists for real in these parts), lets not assume that this new tangle of rules and workflows is by definition the work of the less spiritually gifted.

Spiritual snobbery goes in both directions, but at bottom it's not either / or.  Both freedoms are important:  the freedom to go it alone; the freedom to join in something both complex and choreographed ("team formation").

Put another way, expressing God's glory is more than one individual with a halo.  God is not confined to that form of expression (a single person with a story). 

Institutions likewise unfold and come with stories of their own, and even though these be outward and therefore "of the dream" (part of Creation), we know God is concerned with Creation, and that means more than just hermits in caves having their epiphanies. 

If you can't find God at work in institutions, you just may not be suited by temperament for "dream team" type scenarios.  Hey, it takes all kinds.  Quakerism manifests across the full spectrum.

Comment by Forrest Curo on 12th mo. 10, 2015 at 7:44am

To clarify: I wasn't saying that 'seeing the sunset' was the same as 'seeing God' -- but that there are elements in common, that the act of seeing differs from person to person in both cases.

But since we're experiencing a some-Being, a Sentience -- SHe clearly has some influence over how SHe's seen --

so that even a 'Sighting/Siting' that's far from perfect -- must still be the work of the same Father Jesus describes and tells people to be "like": doing sincere good to all people regardless.

No matter how direct the connection -- or how divinely-aided the communication thereof -- it's still coming through filtered by human personality, human idea-making, human language.

Expression, form, thoughts and feelings about -- all varying by who/when/how experiences the experiencing of the world.

I was quite overwhelmed once by the yin Background -- of which which all the forground content is merely the content...

but there is also the yang from which all forms are continually, creatively-yet-appropriately produced --

and neither could exist except as part of one whole Some-SomeBeing that contains and provides and is our experiencing of anything whatsoever...

Comment by Forrest Curo on 12th mo. 10, 2015 at 7:46am

2nd "which" in the 6th paragraph above is a glitch, sorry.

Comment by Howard Brod on 12th mo. 10, 2015 at 12:45pm

OK Kirby, as an IT guy ponder this:

Is it possible that God, the ultimate energy and Source of all, is analogous to information technology in that at the root of all computer programs, video games, graphics, TV pictures, electronic devices, even the workings of our automobiles is simply electricity that is pulsed on or off as it fills the particular device with these pulses used to create an illusion of substance, if you will.  And these substances (full of the pulses) are embedded within themselves to produce a manifested reality for us to enjoy.

A "geek" or IT engineer at the root level will relish the understanding and experience of the Source directly - the on and off arrangement of the electric pulses - which gives the "geek" a deep understanding of everything manifested by the electric pulses that are on and off.  This deep understanding removes much of the mystery and perhaps gives the "geek" a deeper experience of the resulting manifestations from these pulses.

The average guy, however, just enjoys the forms, the manifestations of the pulses.  And he just says, "Wow, IT is great, to produce all this stuff!"  When one or several of these devices go hay-wired, however, he feels "lost" for his experienced is shattered because his experience is at the surface, involving just the forms (manifestations) of the pulses.  Whereas, the geek is experiencing the whole deal: the source, the pulses, and the manifestations.  This deeper understanding gives him "a peace that surpasses understanding" and perhaps a fuller appreciation and enjoyment of the manifestations from the Source.

Being a retired IT guy myself (not the guru that Kirby is), I often think of "the mystery" within the IT metaphor.

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