I felt it appropriate to share some of my thoughts about religious diversity, before jumping over into the meatier topics that I’m drooling to post about, like Cyclic Progression (Reincarnation), and the Evolution of Consciousness. Not to mention my insights on who Jesus, the Beast, and the apparently much awaited Anti-Christ really are from an esoteric (Spiritual) perspective. As is probably obvious by now, I will be exploring all of these topics from a Christian, Biblical perspective, but more importantly, from a Spiritual perspective. Unfortunately, the two are not necessarily the same thing. But, since it is primarily through the Christian prism that my own Spiritual journey unfolds, that is the language I will make use of the most. That said, this does not mean that I consider the Christian path to be superior, or inferior to any other Spiritual path, which takes us full circle to this chapter’s topic, and the following scripture.                   Do all Spiritual paths lead to the same destination? (If they are engaged spiritually, yes!)                                                                                                        

Mark 9:38-39

38  And John answered him, saying, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name, and he does not follow us: and we forbad him, because he does not follow us.

39  But Jesus said, Forbid him not: for there is no man which shall do a miracle in my name, that can lightly speak evil of me.

“But, ah..,” someone might proclaim; “although the other person spoken of was not a part of the same group as Jesus disciples, he was still using Jesus’ name, so, he was obviously Christian, right?”.

Well, it seems evident from the text that the other person spoken of had no desire to join Jesus’ group, giving rise to the disciple’s miffed attitude concerning the matter. So, one could quite safely infer from this, that the other person using Jesus name did not view Jesus in the same manner that Jesus’ disciples viewed Him. Much like the Jews, Islamists, Jehovah Witnesses, Buddhists, and others do not view Jesus the same way as modern day Christians do. But, for Jesus Himself, it was indeed, all good. Unlike many of us Christians, Jesus was well aware of where all divergent roads of enlightenment/salvation ultimately lead.

The Apostle Paul also alludes to the reality of many paths converging at the ONE destination:

Romans 2:13-14

13  For it is not the hearers of the law who are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.

14  For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature (not in Jesus name, but intuitively.) -the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves: (This “doing by nature”, speaks to the many other forms of spiritual practice which are more intuitive in nature, as oppose to scriptural, or doctrinal./Law.)

In other words, the original purpose for the world’s great Spiritual traditions was for them to be vital tools for helping humanity tap our innate (God given) Spiritual Nature. Which means that True Spirituality is not derived from Holy Books. In fact, the very thing that makes a Holy Book Sacred, is that when it is interpreted correctly (spiritually), it will invariably point, and bear witness to that which is truly Holy…OUR OWN DIVINE INNER ESSENSE!

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

19  What? Don’t you know that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which you have from God, and ye are not your own?

20  For you are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

From my own 40 years of experience on my Spiritual path, I am very familiar with the emotional and psychological hold that religious conditioning can have on a person. It is not uncommon for a devoted child of God to react defensively against anything that we have been told might contaminate, or deceive us, by drawing us away from the righteous path. Well, #1. That is just blatant fear, which is way off the spiritual path to begin with.., And #2. Let’s not forget that where the topic of God is concerned, we are all dealing with something that no one really knows a whole lot about, no matter how spiritual we may be. My point being, maybe we need to chill a bit,  step back for a moment, and ask ourselves if our defensiveness, and sensitivity could be stemming from an unconscious nudge from a more knowing place within ourselves, that is attempting to alert us to the fact that maybe…just maybe, we were already deceived from the word go! Not only does such an introspective act require great humility on our part, but attaining this space of self-awareness is not even possible, unless there is first the occurrence of a quantum shift within one’s consciousness.

Quantum, in the sense of an instantaneous event (Rapture/Changed in a twinkling of an eye), taking place within consciousness, wherein an ingrained thought pattern is instantly, and irrevocably transcended, granting one a new perspective, and the seemingly magical ability to look back upon oneself. We find that we are not the person we were a split second ago, all has been made new. My own shift from a Literal, external perspective to a Spiritual, Inward perspective took place in exactly this instantaneous fashion. In a moment, in a twinkling of an eye, I was caught up with Christ, into higher dimensions of consciousness, at the last Trump (quantum, undetectable vibration – frequency), and that which was dead (carnal), rose up. We start out seeking the Inner Kingdom, striving to apprehend the treasures within the mysteries of God, and then one day..Zap! We find ourselves apprehended by that which we were striving to apprehend. We suddenly cease in our futile efforts to find meaning for our lives outoside of our selves, because we have come into contact with the Kingdom within. This is what Conscious Evolution means, and it is the reason that we have appeared to incarnate within a material universe.

Luke 17:20-22

20 And being asked by the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come? he answered them, and said: The kingdom of God is not observable when it comes:

21 Neither shall they say: Behold here it is, or behold there it is. For lo, the kingdom of God is within you.

22 And Jesus said to his disciples: The days will come, when you shall desire to see the Son of man; and you shall not see it.

23 And they will say to you, Lo here, or Lo there; do not go, nor follow them.

24 For as the lightning shines which lightens from one end under heaven to the other end under heaven, thus shall the Son of man be in his day.

  A Quantum Event within Consciousness! Which is why the above scripture refers to the Son of man as an “IT”. If your Inner Eye has been opened, even a squint, then the Revelation of this mystery is already begun taking hold of you. You are awakening from the Matrix, and are beginning to perceive the Real World. The Middle East conflict is merely a metaphor of the forces that are at conflict within our Eternal Being. Your Inner Self is the only Holy Land that exists, and is the only place where the Divine truly resides. The Kingdom of God is never coming to the earth, except that it is already within you. It is only a matter of awakening to what it is. Behold, IT is at the door knocking..!

How can I know if I’m approaching my Spiritual Path all wrong?

“Wrong” is a relative perspective, the objective is Conscious Evolution. Am I being progressively enlightened to what is happening within my own mind while I am engaged in a given situation? Am I feeling lost, and all caught up in the drama of a situation? The key is to take the initiative to consciously shift our focus back onto what is taking place within ourselves as the scenario is playing itself out. Through this practice we begin to experience miracles, as we are less frequently swept away by negative experiences. With a commitment to this practice, stress free living is attainable. Sure, there will always be challenges that present opportunities for us to venture into dark places of consciousness, but we most certainly can, step by step, learn to shift the energy of our conscious awareness away from our ego, and the outside drama that ego is feeding upon. By feeding the ego less and less, the ego weakens and gradually fades to the background of our consciousness, till it no longer has a controlling influence over us. In Theological terms; The “Strong Man” has been bound, and we find ourselves merely taking nibbles from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good & Evil, instead of feasting upon it by the tub load. There is no “right” and “wrong” on the Path, because it is the God that is at work within us, both willing and doing His own good pleasure. Which means that what we are really dealing with on our paths are degrees of Light, or levels of Gnosis (experiential Knowledge), into what it is that is taking place within us.