2000 years ago we weren't ready... now we are...
I certainly believe that Jesus was an amazing prophet. A man with huge awareness and spirituality. Whether the bible is an accurate reflection of his life and times who really knows, but I am sure that he was able to achieve what would have been seen as miracles at the time.
One of the parts of Jesus's life that troubles me has always been the crucifixion. The part which I have difficulty with is the part that states "he died for us to save us from our sins, he died so that we might live, he died to prove that death is not the end".
Jesus however was going about his teachings in the most peaceful of ways. The Romans in the end were made aware of him. Although they didn't have any real problem with Jesus it was of no real consequence, small beer in a vast empire it appeared unusually disturbing for the locals. Jesus was disturbing the status quo and beginning to put a few important people's noses out of joint and his popularity was rising. He was also sharing that the religious folk and their practises were a million miles away from the truth of god (as he called it, perhaps universe to you or I). As we know from the pharisees in the temple and the money changers story, this was going down like a concrete zeppelin.
So a man (Jesus) shows up, starts causing unrest through teaching things that are contrary to how people have been conditioned to believe... of course, he would have become a target. It is amazing how much hatred must have been stirred up to besmirch and ultimately condemn a man whose only intent was to do good. Propaganda and corruption as we can see goes well back in time. Money, Greed, Manipulation, Power and Control were on the line here. The rest of the story of course we all know.
However, creating a martyr is a dangerous game. The teachings of Jesus were strangely disruptive, not in a violent way but by making people think. What if that caught on? What if people became 'free thinkers' and began to question the motives of those 'in power'... that would be very dangerous indeed. Something needed to be done, no time to lose.
So... what if the story of Jesus dying to save us from our sins isn't true. I have to admit I struggle with this, I don't get that he died to... admonish us from all the bad things we are going to do, how could that work? We make mistakes, all of us. That's how we learn. But what a massive inclusive control device, everyone sins! There is no escaping the fact that we can never be as good as Jesus, who we just murdered! 2,000 years later we're still committing the sins... the world is in a worse state, in actual fact its been a massive crutch to keep us sinning so long as we'll be forgiven, we don't need to grow our self awareness and consciousness. Just turn up on a Sunday and all will be well... no need to think about what we're doing or improve at all! ... and by building this into the very fabric of society, the control (social anxiety) is administered by community themselves. Genius really.
So the teachings of Jesus are hijacked, the christian faith is born from it, but it is warped to create god fearing people. Blasphemy, or questioning any aspect of the faith is punishable by death. Religion is set above the law... But religion is created by man. Religion is about ego, greed, manipulation, subjugation and control, but it looks nice on the outside. It does enough to convince and control, and woe betide anyone that challenges it. We are in some aspects of today's world edging ever closer to some of this thinking again. Politics has that air of we are here for you the people... but we can all see through that one.
Let's look at the facts. 2,000 years on. If we had really followed the teachings of Jesus we would not be where we are. The teachings of Jesus are about the universe, spirituality, love. How come with so much attention, with a global movement, did we achieve so little. The human race is still butchering itself, still fighting wars and yet there has been no shortage of religion and its doctrine. You can understand how people question religion when it has achieved so little. People are hungry, people are lonely, people are cold, people are homeless... What on earth happened?
Probably the greatest trick in the history of our species was pulled over our eyes. What should have been, through the teachings of Jesus, our salvation and deliverance to a better world through love, has been delayed. It has been delayed because man made religion made us fearful, we could never be good enough (sinners, with low self esteem), and were controlled by the need to make sacrifices (social anxiety & guilt). Delayed because the whole essence of it was negative and about making people feel bad about themselves not good.
But it is much worse than that, not content with what started in a small part of the world, what if we exported Christianity around the globe? Promoted it as a good thing, bringing peace, turning the pagan into civilised people (under our control). Suddenly a whole new opportunity arose... you can see the attraction.
The teachings began at an early stage too. Sunday schools and for years in education. In those highly formative years where we should be discovering things... instead we are being force fed things that serve others. Do not get me wrong, I am all for principles, ethics, values and morals, being the best human being we can be is a great goal. But this must be for the benefit of the person doing the work on themselves first and foremost. Achieve that success and everything emanates from that. It is the personal victory that must come first. Loving ourselves enables us to serve others. If we are constantly told we are 'not enough' and are following teachings that re-enforce this, how can we ever create an environment that delivers on the teachings of Jesus... if we are not love, how can we give love?
The final nail in the coffin, making sacrifices, a tool to keep us down and out? To cover up what was essentially a killing by the state, the story of the crucifixion in my view has been woven into the belief systems and turned into a positive story of the ultimate sacrifice. Jesus gave up his life so that we might be saved. The whole story manufactured, even now I struggle to understand how I could not have questioned this.
What is making sacrifices? Is it doing something you would rather not do for the benefit of others? is it paying the price now because of a previous mistake through guilt and social anxiety?
Who decided that we need to make sacrifices? I know I was taught things like 'well you've made your bed, now you've got to lay in it'. Why have I got to pay a price? Why must I be unhappy? There is so much conditioning out there that this is really like peeling the layers off an onion... There has to be a better way. A positive way of enabling people to live their lives and work towards being happy without all this punitive self harm and flagellation.
You might feel I have broken all the rules with this post. I have grown spiritually a huge amount this year, some wonderful teachers have appeared before me. I have not singled out religion to have a pop at, education, politics, health, charities many aspects of society have become woefully bent out of shape. The world is in a real pickle... we won't change it with the thinking that created it... it really is time for change.
To change we must question things. We must look for truths. Everything must be re-looked at and we must do this from a position of love, and what is good for people and the planet... not money, greed and control. I actually often refer to the teachings in the bible. Every important lesson is in there, and there is no doubt in my mind that the wisdom Jesus taught through Love is the way forward. What I question is the bit man has added, religion.
Historically though people don't give up power without a struggle. I believe this will be our biggest ever collective challenge, but... what we create through the basic teachings of Jesus - Loving unconditionally, will be something pretty amazing. It is up to us, don't doubt it... just help create it.