A spare thought or two regarding religion and faith

I haven't self-identified as a Christian for some time now, a couple of years. I've explored a variety of spiritual perspectives in that time. Now it seems I have less need to do any seeking of an outward nature. I try to focus on simply listening to what I'm being told personally by the circumstances and daily events of my life, by synchronicities and dreams. I observe silence and beauty. I dig into my thoughts, feelings and motivations, try to discern the true from the false with the sword of awareness, to understand where I've gone wrong, and attempt to forgive all my many deviations from the way of Life. Forgiveness is often the most difficult phase, but it is crucial. Without forgiveness, there is only a hell of guilt, a legion of incriminating voices crying "not good enough!"

To withhold forgiveness, from oneself or from others, is to deny the Love with which we are created, to obstruct the flow of Life that streams unending from the infinite source of all things. And when we are thus negatively disposed to that all-encompassing flow, we find that it becomes a rain of arrows, bringing anguish and pain. Instead of letting go and transforming our pain into Love, we too often simply opt to build thicker and thicker walls around our hearts. The result being that we are increasingly cut off from the Source. We descend deeper and deeper into separation, into a realm where illusion, deception, manipulation, distortion, and corruption appear to rule. Struggle replaces ease, fear and anxiety and anger replace love and trust and harmony.

Christianity holds that forgiveness is only possible because of the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus, a "perfect sacrificial lamb" who took the sins of the world upon his shoulders, descended into hell, and defeated Satan's power so that whoever believes and accepts his redemption work can be saved and go to heaven. This is the storybook version. I know a lot of people believe it literally, and they're welcome to it. For me, it doesn't hold water as such. As far as I do accept it, I take it as an archetypal myth that both conceals and reveals the actual spiritual truth behind it, depending upon whether we have eyes to see and ears to hear.

Jesus was a spiritual master, prepared from even before his birth for the role he was to play on this earthly stage. He went through some process of initiation into the ancient esoteric mysteries, probably in both Egypt and India. He came to a full awakening of the Christ consciousness, which is a balanced and perfect consciousness, the Ain Soph Aur, the white light of the Trinity. In this sense he most definitely was an Avatar of God.

The Bible is a tough book to read if you're looking for truth but don't know what to look for. After all, it was written and edited by all sorts of people with all sorts of motivations. And canonized, mind you, by a particular group of people with particular motivations. I mean, of course, the Council of Nicea. That's when they made the sausage. When the modern, processed, pre-packaged, adulterated, sterile version of Christianity was born. To serve the needs of the very powers-that-be from under whose oppression the real teachings of Jesus would have delivered all people, had they been taken to heart.

If you question nothing, you get only what you're given. True faith in God will withstand any revelation and any trial, because it is flexible and open to new information, and rests upon the true source of all strength and hope and insight. Of course, our faith is weak. We stumble and stray. But this is the work of God in us. Every error and failing brings us closer to learning how not to fail. We learn what makes us suffer, and what the antidote to our suffering is. The answer is to seek to perceive God in all things, even to perceive as God. Through the eyes of Love and ever higher awareness....