Time to Arise

Are the following statements true or false? Moses talked with God in a burning bush. Jesus rose from the dead. Joseph Smith received many visions from an angel. Mohammed also received a vision from an angel.

In fact, each of the statements is false. These stories are myths. People nowadays understand that the Greek gods - Zeus, Venus, Neptune, et al. - were mythological; same with the Native American spirits. Why do people not also see the mythological aspects of their own religions, while often missing the main tenets of the spiritual teachings? And why do people become uncomfortable or angry if their myths are challenged?

Now, consider another statement: God wants us to obey him; if we do not, that’s a sin. This statement is not true, either. The creator does not set rules for us, and does not tell us when to pray or what kind of food to eat. These rules are set by man to create obedience. There is no sin from the perspective of the Universe. Trying to make the divine energy of all life into a being who gets angry, exacts punishment, and demands worship testifies to man’s inability to understand the complexity and enormity of the Universe. Creating an anthropomorphic image of god may be easier to grasp, but inevitably demeans the all-ness of god.

Of course, anyone can believe whatever they want. People can believe in the Easter Bunny, Santa Clause, or the Angel Gabriel. They can believe they are separate from god, or that they will go to a heaven after this life, maybe to a palace with many virgins. That’s fine, no problem.

But what people tend to ignore are the basic spiritual teachings of the various religions. Here are the most basic concepts: Love one another. Judge not. Forgive. If people devoted as much credence and allegiance to these concepts, we would have peace in our world.

Love one another. The teaching is not: love some people but not others, or love some people some of the time, or love only a few people. It means love everyone, even your enemies, all the time. Why do so many people find so many ways to condition, limit, or justify their dismissal of this most basic precept? Love one another also doesn’t mean make war on others, or abuse, hate, or rape them. How can anyone who truly loves also make war? Doesn’t killing other people fall short of love? If we simply loved one another, then we see and know the love we all share. If we give love, we receive love. The energy of the Universe - god if you like - is love and peace. And we – everything there is – are love.

Judge not. Since we are all the same in love, if we judge another, we really judge ourselves. If we make war, we make war on ourselves. Isn’t murdering one other simply humanity killing itself? Judging another person based on their race, creed, sex, sexual orientation, or even their hair style is still judgment that is based on fear and takes us away from love.

Forgive. This just means, let go. Let go of the perceived wrongs, injustices, or other fears one may have. It doesn’t mean confess your sins to a man who will forgive you on behalf of god; the Universe and god have already forgiven you. All ultimately is past and forgiven. There is no right or wrong, no evil or sin, in the Universe. Again, those are man made concepts.

So, if you assume for just a moment that these are the basic spiritual teachings, and that each person is capable of loving, not judging, and forgiving, then what’s the problem? Why do people seem so greedy, deceitful, judgmental, war-mongering, hateful, and angry?

The answer is always and only fear. People are afraid of not having that love they crave. They’re afraid of dying. They’re afraid of the future. They’re afraid of not having enough money, food, or sex. They’re afraid of what other people will do. They’re afraid of people destroying their vision of life and what god wants. People are even afraid that people will think they're afraid, but we all have fears.

Would some people, or a nation, attack another if they weren’t afraid of something? No, it simply would not happen. A person would not be angry if he or she was not afraid of something. Why would people be defensive or angry at someone who questioned a belief unless they were afraid the belief was wrong?

The key point here is not that people believe in myths. That is important to understand, of course. It’s time for people to stop rigidly structuring their lives based on falsehoods. It’s time to say the emperor has no clothes.

The key point is that all of the spiritual concepts that can lead us to a peaceful world have been taught for centuries. If we all choose to love, not judge, and forgive, peace would be ours. But we humans have a disease called fear. If we could just let go of fear and love one another the way the masters taught us, that would be all we’d need. And we wouldn’t need myths to rely on.