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Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...

 
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 333404
United States
11/30/2007 09:14 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
Can you?

Positive, negative, neutral, political, belief-wise, statistically, figures and so forth can you fine comparisons between any Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life/etc?

This includes, but is not limited to:

Baha’i
Buddhism
Cao Dai
Christianity
Christian Science
Confucianism
Hinduism
Islam
Jainism
Juche
Judaism
Magic
Mysticism
Native American Belief Systems
New-Ager or New Thought
Neo-Paganism
Open-Minded Thought
Paganism
Rastafarianism
Science of Mind
Scientology
Shinto
Sikhism
Spiritualism
Taoism
Tenrikyo
The Satanic Lifestyle
Traditional Chinese Religion
Unitarian-Universalism
Wiccan
Zoroastrianism

Feel free to extend the list.

hf
 Quoting: :)(:



Christianity is the only Valid religion

The others have been created out of paganism
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 274946
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11/30/2007 09:15 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
even christianity was created out of paganism
thanks to Constantine
Don't Taze Me , Bro.
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11/30/2007 09:26 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
bahai love Jesus
so, i'm down with that
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 274946



Baha'i love EVERYBODY! hf
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 218297
United States
11/30/2007 09:31 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
Can you?

Positive, negative, neutral, political, belief-wise, statistically, figures and so forth can you fine comparisons between any Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life/etc?

This includes, but is not limited to:

Baha’i
Buddhism
Cao Dai
Christianity
Christian Science
Confucianism
Hinduism
Islam
Jainism
Juche
Judaism
Magic
Mysticism
Native American Belief Systems
New-Ager or New Thought
Neo-Paganism
Open-Minded Thought
Paganism
Rastafarianism
Science of Mind
Scientology
Shinto
Sikhism
Spiritualism
Taoism
Tenrikyo
The Satanic Lifestyle
Traditional Chinese Religion
Unitarian-Universalism
Wiccan
Zoroastrianism

Feel free to extend the list.

hf
 Quoting: :)(:



I believe a lot of those listed stemmed from one truth so in some ways they are comparable.

And some of the others I am not familiar with - but some are (satanic) in nature. As Satan is the great pretender and tries to copy (and twist) whatever God does.
Anonymous Coward
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11/30/2007 09:36 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
even christianity was created out of paganism
thanks to Constantine
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 274946


The Catholic Church did not create Christianity, they only paganized it. Christianity is found in the Word of God.
:)(:  (OP)

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11/30/2007 09:42 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
Christianity is the only Valid religion

The others have been created out of paganism
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 333404

Why do you feel this way? Why isn't paganism valid in your eyes?

bahai love Jesus
so, i'm down with that

Baha'i love EVERYBODY! hf
 Quoting: Don't Taze Me , Bro. 333928

Can you tell me a little bit more about Baha'i?

I believe a lot of those listed stemmed from one truth so in some ways they are comparable.

And some of the others I am not familiar with - but some are (satanic) in nature. As Satan is the great pretender and tries to copy (and twist) whatever God does.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 218297

I have spoken to some very hateful Satanists just as I have spoken to some very loving practitioners of the Satanic Lifestyle. Neither of these people worship Satan, but rather use "Satan" as a symbol. It is not my faith, but it is interesting to me just as they all are.
“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself,” ~ Alan Alda
---
"Conscious breathing of the universe creates a symphony where we receive life like a gift and release it like a present." ~ Akiane

O!
Don't Taze Me , Bro.
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11/30/2007 09:48 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
Can you tell me a little bit more about Baha'i?


 Quoting: :)(:


[link to www.no_spam]

[link to en.wikipedia.org]

[link to www.bahai.us]
:)(:  (OP)

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11/30/2007 09:51 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
 Quoting: Don't Taze Me , Bro. 333928

Wonderful! Thank you :D!
“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself,” ~ Alan Alda
---
"Conscious breathing of the universe creates a symphony where we receive life like a gift and release it like a present." ~ Akiane

O!
Anonymous Coward
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11/30/2007 10:05 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
Christianity is the only Valid religion

The others have been created out of paganism

Why do you feel this way? Why isn't paganism valid in your eyes?
 Quoting: :)(:



Many reasons centering around truth, including the pagan "science" of evolution.
Anonymous Coward
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11/30/2007 10:06 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
This is an enormous and wonderful subject!

In every system of religion, it is accepted that God is the Supreme Creator of all living entities. Any religion that does not accept the Supreme Creator as Absolute is a cheating religion. Only an atheist does not accept the Omnipotent Supreme Creator.

We are many, and God is one. So if we accept one God, then where is the chance of different religious system? People claim to follow a certain type of religion, saying formally, "I am Hindu," "I am Muslim," "I am Christian," "I am this or that," but almost no one follows the principles enunciated in religious scriptures. This is the disease of this age.
Here are a few fundamental lines of demarcation:

1. Personalist or Impersonalist

All religions are either personalist or impersonalist – they either believe that God is a unique personality, or they believe that God is not a unique personality. The latter believe God/Goddess is 'energy'… light, sound, universal form, "the universe", consciousness, etc. They don't accept that God is an independent personality.

In general, Christians, Hindus/Vaisnavas, Jews, Sikhs, and Muslims are all personalists. Buddhism and Zen are atheistic (no God).

Most of the earth religions and many of the esotericists (e.g. Theosophists) are impersonalists. Some call God "she" and assign a specific personality to the Goddess, considering her one with, or essentially the same as, Nature. They simultaneously recognize various personalities as also being Goddesses, but don't clearly differentiate between these personalities (i.e., which Goddess is THE Goddess, and by virtue of what qualities/characteristics?). Indigenous native traditions are also generally impersonalist, again because they consider the Great Spirit to be a universal energy embodied in nature.

Amongst all the personalists, only the Hindus/Vaisnavas have sastra (scripture) that very explicitly describes who God is as a unique personality: what He likes/dislikes, what his Form, Opulences, Pastimes, Paraphernalia and Associates are, etc. While some may believe that God is one and God is great, they can't explain just HOW God is great… other than to describe God in somewhat ambiguous terms like omniscient, omnipresent, etc.

2. Karma or no karma

Essentially all Hindus and Sikhs believe in reincarnation. When it comes to Muslims, Jews and Christians, some do and some don't. Many believe that scriptures were "adjusted" to eliminate reincarnation so as to give greater power to the living spiritual leaders. Buddhist also believe in reincarnation.

3. Serve or Be Served

One of the 'functional' divisions between religions has to do with the service/seva mentality. Are you the servant of God, or is God the servant of you? Do you offer your daily bread to God, or ask God to give you your daily bread? Do you pray to God to help you, save you, keep you healthy, make you happy? Or do you pray to God by only glorifying Him, never asking for anything and only offering to Him?

4. Time, place and circumstance

Religions also differentiate themselves in terms of when they believe creation started… in measurable or immeasurable time. Most Christians are locked into the 6,000 year garden of eden creationist approach, while Hindus/Vaisnavas understand time in cycles that are immeasurable, and millennially old. "Place and circumstance" refers to where the creation takes place – only in the universe we can perceive around us? Only on planet Earth? Or in a vast creation of innumerable universes beyond understanding.

5. Sastra (Scripture)

What books of authority a religion accepts, who they believe authored those books, and how they believe the Absolute Truth was passed down as pure, unadulterated knowledge has a great deal to do with how religions actually function, and how they compare to one another.

6. God's Pure Representatives

Another major differentiator is what religions believe about who/how/when God has sent His pure representatives to save humanity by mercifully bringing them the Absolute Truth. Christians believe that Jesus is the only Son, which fits nicely with their non-belief (at least scripturally) in reincarnation. Most other religions believe that God can't be limited in such a way… you can't tell God that He can only have one son. Rather, most religions believe that God sends his pure sons/representatives over and over, as needed, to re-establish the Absolute Truth when it has been lost to humanity. And sometimes God comes Himself rather than sending a representative. These major, personal manifestations are what we know of as God as the head of the major religions: Krsna, Allah, Jehovah, Buddha.
:)(:  (OP)

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11/30/2007 10:55 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
Many reasons centering around truth, including the pagan "science" of evolution.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 333404

Please elaborate :).
“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself,” ~ Alan Alda
---
"Conscious breathing of the universe creates a symphony where we receive life like a gift and release it like a present." ~ Akiane

O!
Anonymous Coward
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11/30/2007 10:57 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
It's all about Jesus!
:)(:  (OP)

User ID: 331394
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11/30/2007 10:58 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
This is an enormous and wonderful subject!

In every system of religion, it is accepted that God is the Supreme Creator of all living entities. Any religion that does not accept the Supreme Creator as Absolute is a cheating religion. Only an atheist does not accept the Omnipotent Supreme Creator.

We are many, and God is one. So if we accept one God, then where is the chance of different religious system? People claim to follow a certain type of religion, saying formally, "I am Hindu," "I am Muslim," "I am Christian," "I am this or that," but almost no one follows the principles enunciated in religious scriptures. This is the disease of this age.
Here are a few fundamental lines of demarcation:

1. Personalist or Impersonalist

All religions are either personalist or impersonalist – they either believe that God is a unique personality, or they believe that God is not a unique personality. The latter believe God/Goddess is 'energy'… light, sound, universal form, "the universe", consciousness, etc. They don't accept that God is an independent personality.

In general, Christians, Hindus/Vaisnavas, Jews, Sikhs, and Muslims are all personalists. Buddhism and Zen are atheistic (no God).

Most of the earth religions and many of the esotericists (e.g. Theosophists) are impersonalists. Some call God "she" and assign a specific personality to the Goddess, considering her one with, or essentially the same as, Nature. They simultaneously recognize various personalities as also being Goddesses, but don't clearly differentiate between these personalities (i.e., which Goddess is THE Goddess, and by virtue of what qualities/characteristics?). Indigenous native traditions are also generally impersonalist, again because they consider the Great Spirit to be a universal energy embodied in nature.

Amongst all the personalists, only the Hindus/Vaisnavas have sastra (scripture) that very explicitly describes who God is as a unique personality: what He likes/dislikes, what his Form, Opulences, Pastimes, Paraphernalia and Associates are, etc. While some may believe that God is one and God is great, they can't explain just HOW God is great… other than to describe God in somewhat ambiguous terms like omniscient, omnipresent, etc.

2. Karma or no karma

Essentially all Hindus and Sikhs believe in reincarnation. When it comes to Muslims, Jews and Christians, some do and some don't. Many believe that scriptures were "adjusted" to eliminate reincarnation so as to give greater power to the living spiritual leaders. Buddhist also believe in reincarnation.

3. Serve or Be Served

One of the 'functional' divisions between religions has to do with the service/seva mentality. Are you the servant of God, or is God the servant of you? Do you offer your daily bread to God, or ask God to give you your daily bread? Do you pray to God to help you, save you, keep you healthy, make you happy? Or do you pray to God by only glorifying Him, never asking for anything and only offering to Him?

4. Time, place and circumstance

Religions also differentiate themselves in terms of when they believe creation started… in measurable or immeasurable time. Most Christians are locked into the 6,000 year garden of eden creationist approach, while Hindus/Vaisnavas understand time in cycles that are immeasurable, and millennially old. "Place and circumstance" refers to where the creation takes place – only in the universe we can perceive around us? Only on planet Earth? Or in a vast creation of innumerable universes beyond understanding.

5. Sastra (Scripture)

What books of authority a religion accepts, who they believe authored those books, and how they believe the Absolute Truth was passed down as pure, unadulterated knowledge has a great deal to do with how religions actually function, and how they compare to one another.

6. God's Pure Representatives

Another major differentiator is what religions believe about who/how/when God has sent His pure representatives to save humanity by mercifully bringing them the Absolute Truth. Christians believe that Jesus is the only Son, which fits nicely with their non-belief (at least scripturally) in reincarnation. Most other religions believe that God can't be limited in such a way… you can't tell God that He can only have one son. Rather, most religions believe that God sends his pure sons/representatives over and over, as needed, to re-establish the Absolute Truth when it has been lost to humanity. And sometimes God comes Himself rather than sending a representative. These major, personal manifestations are what we know of as God as the head of the major religions: Krsna, Allah, Jehovah, Buddha.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 313297

Thank you so much! Those were beautiful and so absolutly enlightening :D! I appreciate this greatly hf!!!

May I ask what you believe as well? It's okay if you find this irrelevant and don't wish to respond :).
“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself,” ~ Alan Alda
---
"Conscious breathing of the universe creates a symphony where we receive life like a gift and release it like a present." ~ Akiane

O!
:)(:  (OP)

User ID: 331394
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11/30/2007 10:59 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
It's all about Jesus!
 Quoting: Phoenix 2012

Hehehe, hey Phoenix! How so?
“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself,” ~ Alan Alda
---
"Conscious breathing of the universe creates a symphony where we receive life like a gift and release it like a present." ~ Akiane

O!
Anonymous Coward
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11/30/2007 11:14 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
It's all about Jesus!

Hehehe, hey Phoenix! How so?
 Quoting: :)(:


Hello there! In my personal life I have experienced miracles through prayer to Jesus Christ, also he is certainly a fine example of the golden rule. I tried doing it on my own without much success. Now I trust God.

Much love my friend!
:)(:  (OP)

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11/30/2007 11:16 PM
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Hello there! In my personal life I have experienced miracles through prayer to Jesus Christ, also he is certainly a fine example of the golden rule. I tried doing it on my own without much success. Now I trust God.

Much love my friend!

 Quoting: Phoenix 2012

P ~

What about the friend you healed? Do you remember who I am speaking of?

God, I AM, or God, Supreme Being (Singular)? Do you attend Church again?

Is this a form of "Be Still"?

Loving you,

~ A
“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself,” ~ Alan Alda
---
"Conscious breathing of the universe creates a symphony where we receive life like a gift and release it like a present." ~ Akiane

O!
Anonymous Coward
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11/30/2007 11:18 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
Hello there! In my personal life I have experienced miracles through prayer to Jesus Christ, also he is certainly a fine example of the golden rule. I tried doing it on my own without much success. Now I trust God.

Much love my friend!


P ~

What about the friend you healed? Do you remember who I am speaking of?

God, I AM, or God, Supreme Being (Singular)? Do you attend Church again?

Is this a form of "Be Still"?

Loving you,

~ A
 Quoting: :)(:


I prayed, and God healed through the gift of the Son. It is a beautiful thing. Yes, I will be attending the house of my father soon.

Big hugs to you!
:)(:  (OP)

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11/30/2007 11:21 PM
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I prayed, and God healed through the gift of the Son. It is a beautiful thing. Yes, I will be attending the house of my father soon.
 Quoting: Phoenix 2012

Hmmm... has someone hacked your account? I mean, it is perfectly fine if you feel this way. Beautiful, it is, but, well, I guess it's so opposite to what you have shared before.

Do you mean your son or Jesus Christ?

When did you change your mind?

Loving you, friend.
“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself,” ~ Alan Alda
---
"Conscious breathing of the universe creates a symphony where we receive life like a gift and release it like a present." ~ Akiane

O!
Anonymous Coward
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11/30/2007 11:27 PM
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I prayed, and God healed through the gift of the Son. It is a beautiful thing. Yes, I will be attending the house of my father soon.

Hmmm... has someone hacked your account? I mean, it is perfectly fine if you feel this way. Beautiful, it is, but, well, I guess it's so opposite to what you have shared before.

Do you mean your son or Jesus Christ?

When did you change your mind?

Loving you, friend.
 Quoting: :)(:


No it's me! lol. Jesus Christ never left my heart, while I explored the thoughts in my mind. We can attach labels to our belief systems but the bottom line is always the same. Love, Jesus Christ taught love. He fought against the very tyranny we are all fighting today and died for us in the process.

Have I lost anything? I don't think so :)

Peace,
Jdd

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11/30/2007 11:27 PM
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Greetings, :)(:

Glad you found my posting helpful. (Sorry, I lost my avatar on the last post... must have timed out.)

I'm one of the personalists -- a Vaisnava. I'm a monotheist (there's only one God), I believe that God is a unique personality, that He comes again and again to re-establish the Absolute Truth each time humanity looses it, and that sometimes He sends his pure devotee representatives (avatars, incarnations, sons.

I believe in all the manifestations of God worshipped by major religions, Allah, Jehovah, Buddha, but personally I choose to worship God in what I believe to be his original Form, Krsna. I accept the teachings of the avatars/sons, including Christ.

While I accept the philosophical fundamentals of most of the major religions (and I don't see them as being in great contradiction to one another… they're mostly just badly practiced), I think most current religions suffer from the fact that their sastra (scripture) has been adulterated over time. I believe that the Vedas are the most complete and perfect scripture available on the planet, and that the methodology of parampara (disciplic succession/lineage), which is a very exacting science, allows us even today to have access to the unadulterated Absolute Truth.

I believe the Absolute Truth is sound vibration, and when we hear it, we know it (although we may reject it in order to keep trying to enjoy our senses). I believe that one finds a spiritual master/teacher/guru by recognizing his/her purity, by hearing the unadulterated sound vibration of the pure surrendered servant of God.

I believe that God is the Supreme Personality and all the living entities are God's servants. I strive to serve rather than be served. I mostly fail at that, but keep trying.

I believe that the best way to engage in spiritual life, gaining knowledge and realization, is to keep a peaceful, simple regulated life. My practice includes celibacy, no meat eating, intoxication or gambling. My practice of worship includes hearing and chanting… chanting japa (mantra… reciting the Holy Names of God) and devotional singing (bhajans and kirtan), reading sastra, and generally trying to think about God as much as possible… His glories, His name, fame and pastimes, etc.

In another recent GLP thread entitled "When We Die And Our Souls Go Somewhere Else Then...", I wrote:

The spirit soul (jivatma) is eternal. It was created by God and empowered with free will, so it can choose to remain in the spiritual realm serving God in pure loving relationship, or it can fall into the material realm as a result of wanting to be God. Jivatmas who have become fallen conditioned souls are 'conditioned' by the mind, senses and false ego. They "want to be God" in the sense that they want to control the material energy and the other living entities in order to enjoy sense gratification.

The jivatma is a part and parcel of God… inconceivably, simultaneously one and different. The individual living entity is qualitatively the same as God, but quantitatively different (lesser than). Everything that exists came from God, including the jivatmas. But being conditioned, they are like a perverted reflection of the Supreme Creator, who is also a personality.

While the jivatma may become separated from God, it is not complete separation. The Lord is always present in the heart of the jivatma, in the form of Supersoul (paramatma). This is like two birds in a tree… one is the Lord as Paramatma, and one is the jivatma. The Lord is present, observing, and when the jivatma 'wakes up' enough to the Lord's presence, greater interaction begins to occur. By His presence as Paramatma, the Lord fulfills the desires of the living entity… good, bad, or indifferent.

The jivatmas who have fallen into the material condition have become embodied so that they can "enjoy" through the mind and senses. But of course they can't really enjoy. All they really do is suffer the endless repetitions of birth, death, disease and old age. Meanwhile, they think their temporary sense enjoyment is real. Actually, it's just a temporary cessation of suffering. They continue cycling through until they become God-conscious (self-realized), and go back home to God.

In the meantime, while they struggle to regain their spiritual sense, they cycle through bodies, one after another. This is called transmigration of the soul (reincarnation). Basically, here's how it works:

The jivatma never leaves the body until his next body has already been identified. This next body is determined based entirely upon the jivatmas's own desire nature. This is often referred to as karma, but that's a simplistic view. Karma is actually a consequence of the desire nature. It's not that you're "punished" for your past deeds, so much as that you take a new body that's appropriate to fulfilling your free will, i.e., your desire nature, as expressed by your past actions.

Throughout his lifetime, the jivatma's aggregate desires are stored up in the subtle mind. These desires, along with karmic reaction, create the living entity's next body. So the jivatma dies after it has been decided what form of body he will have in the next life. Higher authorities, not the living entity himself, make this decision. According to our activities in this life, we either rise or sink. This life is a preparation for the next life. If we can prepare in this life to get promotion to the kingdom of God, then surely after quitting this material body, we will attain a spiritual body. If not, we take another material body and continue suffering, to the degree that we aren't yet fully God-conscious. We never lose whatever spiritual progress we've made. In whatever condition one quits his present body, in his next life he will attain to that state of being without fail.

If the living entity has attained perfection, he can select the time and place for leaving this material world. But if he is not so perfect, then he has to leave at nature's will. What is of most importance is that at the time of death, the jivatma's mind and heart are firmly fixed on God. In that state, one can also return home to God, regardless of past karma and desires. For that reason, engaging in spiritual activities throughout life is critically important. It conditions us to meditate upon, and constantly glorify God. That way, it's much easier to fix one's consciousness on God at the time of death, thereby escaping the misery of this conditioned material life, cycling constantly through birth and death.



Thank you so much! Those were beautiful and so absolutly enlightening :D! I appreciate this greatly hf!!!

May I ask what you believe as well? It's okay if you find this irrelevant and don't wish to respond :).
 Quoting: :)(:
:)(:  (OP)

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11/30/2007 11:33 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
No it's me! lol. Jesus Christ never left my heart, while I explored the thoughts in my mind. We can attach labels to our belief systems but the bottom line is always the same. Love, Jesus Christ taught love. He fought against the very tyranny we are all fighting today and died for us in the process.

Have I lost anything? I don't think so :)

Peace,

 Quoting: Phoenix 2012

Okay :). I feel you there. I just thought you didn't believe in the Church[b/](of any kind). That's where I got confused.

Peace and Love!
“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself,” ~ Alan Alda
---
"Conscious breathing of the universe creates a symphony where we receive life like a gift and release it like a present." ~ Akiane

O!
Anonymous Coward
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11/30/2007 11:37 PM
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No it's me! lol. Jesus Christ never left my heart, while I explored the thoughts in my mind. We can attach labels to our belief systems but the bottom line is always the same. Love, Jesus Christ taught love. He fought against the very tyranny we are all fighting today and died for us in the process.

Have I lost anything? I don't think so :)

Peace,


Okay :). I feel you there. I just thought you didn't believe in the Church[b/](of any kind). That's where I got confused.

Peace and Love!
 Quoting: :)(:


I have really never to tried to be judgemental to anyone as you well know. I was hardest in my fight against the bible as I feel it is often mis-represented. As I journey through life with a open mind and a loving heart, I have come to the conclusion none of us are really that different. Where to next?
:)(:  (OP)

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11/30/2007 11:38 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
Greetings, :)(:

I believe the Absolute Truth is sound vibration, and when we hear it, we know it (although we may reject it in order to keep trying to enjoy our senses). I believe that one finds a spiritual master/teacher/guru by recognizing his/her purity, by hearing the unadulterated sound vibration of the pure surrendered servant of God.

I believe that God is the Supreme Personality and all the living entities are God's servants. I strive to serve rather than be served. I mostly fail at that, but keep trying.

I believe that the best way to engage in spiritual life, gaining knowledge and realization, is to keep a peaceful, simple regulated life. My practice includes celibacy, no meat eating, intoxication or gambling. My practice of worship includes hearing and chanting… chanting japa (mantra… reciting the Holy Names of God) and devotional singing (bhajans and kirtan), reading sastra, and generally trying to think about God as much as possible… His glories, His name, fame and pastimes, etc.

In another recent GLP thread entitled "When We Die And Our Souls Go Somewhere Else Then...", I wrote:

The spirit soul (jivatma) is eternal. It was created by God and empowered with free will, so it can choose to remain in the spiritual realm serving God in pure loving relationship, or it can fall into the material realm as a result of wanting to be God. Jivatmas who have become fallen conditioned souls are 'conditioned' by the mind, senses and false ego. They "want to be God" in the sense that they want to control the material energy and the other living entities in order to enjoy sense gratification.

The jivatma is a part and parcel of God… inconceivably, simultaneously one and different. The individual living entity is qualitatively the same as God, but quantitatively different (lesser than). Everything that exists came from God, including the jivatmas. But being conditioned, they are like a perverted reflection of the Supreme Creator, who is also a personality.

While the jivatma may become separated from God, it is not complete separation. The Lord is always present in the heart of the jivatma, in the form of Supersoul (paramatma). This is like two birds in a tree… one is the Lord as Paramatma, and one is the jivatma. The Lord is present, observing, and when the jivatma 'wakes up' enough to the Lord's presence, greater interaction begins to occur. By His presence as Paramatma, the Lord fulfills the desires of the living entity… good, bad, or indifferent.

The jivatmas who have fallen into the material condition have become embodied so that they can "enjoy" through the mind and senses. But of course they can't really enjoy. All they really do is suffer the endless repetitions of birth, death, disease and old age. Meanwhile, they think their temporary sense enjoyment is real. Actually, it's just a temporary cessation of suffering. They continue cycling through until they become God-conscious (self-realized), and go back home to God.

In the meantime, while they struggle to regain their spiritual sense, they cycle through bodies, one after another. This is called transmigration of the soul (reincarnation). Basically, here's how it works:

The jivatma never leaves the body until his next body has already been identified. This next body is determined based entirely upon the jivatmas's own desire nature. This is often referred to as karma, but that's a simplistic view. Karma is actually a consequence of the desire nature. It's not that you're "punished" for your past deeds, so much as that you take a new body that's appropriate to fulfilling your free will, i.e., your desire nature, as expressed by your past actions.

Throughout his lifetime, the jivatma's aggregate desires are stored up in the subtle mind. These desires, along with karmic reaction, create the living entity's next body. So the jivatma dies after it has been decided what form of body he will have in the next life. Higher authorities, not the living entity himself, make this decision. According to our activities in this life, we either rise or sink. This life is a preparation for the next life. If we can prepare in this life to get promotion to the kingdom of God, then surely after quitting this material body, we will attain a spiritual body. If not, we take another material body and continue suffering, to the degree that we aren't yet fully God-conscious. We never lose whatever spiritual progress we've made. In whatever condition one quits his present body, in his next life he will attain to that state of being without fail.

If the living entity has attained perfection, he can select the time and place for leaving this material world. But if he is not so perfect, then he has to leave at nature's will. What is of most importance is that at the time of death, the jivatma's mind and heart are firmly fixed on God. In that state, one can also return home to God, regardless of past karma and desires. For that reason, engaging in spiritual activities throughout life is critically important. It conditions us to meditate upon, and constantly glorify God. That way, it's much easier to fix one's consciousness on God at the time of death, thereby escaping the misery of this conditioned material life, cycling constantly through birth and death.
 Quoting: Jdd

:)! How exciting! I've never heard of "Vaisnava" before :D!

I like that definition of the God Force being Pure Sound Vibration. I feel I have felt this before. Do you think/know that this might be felt by all the senses rather than just heard?

If all things are God then why is it miserable to be living in "the flesh" and experiencing reincarantion? Couldn't this be seen as a gift as well? Perhaps I missed this answer?

All in all, I really, really enjoyed this definition. I love learning new things. I'm honored by your gift!
“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself,” ~ Alan Alda
---
"Conscious breathing of the universe creates a symphony where we receive life like a gift and release it like a present." ~ Akiane

O!
:)(:  (OP)

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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
I have really never to tried to be judgemental to anyone as you well know. I was hardest in my fight against the bible as I feel it is often mis-represented. As I journey through life with a open mind and a loving heart, I have come to the conclusion none of us are really that different. Where to next?
 Quoting: Phoenix 2012

Amen, Phoenix!

Where to? Well I'm working on defining, combining and simplifying with others. Focus: Open-minded understanding. If I can achieve it fully for myself, that is enough. If others walk with me in this, that is enough.

;D!

LOVING you!
“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself,” ~ Alan Alda
---
"Conscious breathing of the universe creates a symphony where we receive life like a gift and release it like a present." ~ Akiane

O!
Anonymous Coward
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11/30/2007 11:44 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
I have really never to tried to be judgemental to anyone as you well know. I was hardest in my fight against the bible as I feel it is often mis-represented. As I journey through life with a open mind and a loving heart, I have come to the conclusion none of us are really that different. Where to next?

Amen, Phoenix!

Where to? Well I'm working on defining, combining and simplifying with others. Focus: Open-minded understanding. If I can achieve it fully for myself, that is enough. If others walk with me in this, that is enough.

;D!

LOVING you!
 Quoting: :)(:


Loving you too! We are definitely on the same quest. It's full of great discoveries and thoughts. If anyone is by your side in the search I am. But like I stated I think everyone is. We are looking for that all encompassing key that just makes everything right.
:)(:  (OP)

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11/30/2007 11:49 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
Loving you too! We are definitely on the same quest. It's full of great discoveries and thoughts. If anyone is by your side in the search I am. But like I stated I think everyone is. We are looking for that all encompassing key that just makes everything right.
 Quoting: Phoenix 2012

Ah... what joy I feel now. Thank you, friend. Truly, thank you! Okay, I am off to bed and meditation now :). What a gift. I needed this joyful note and uplift!

Goodnow!

More soon...
“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself,” ~ Alan Alda
---
"Conscious breathing of the universe creates a symphony where we receive life like a gift and release it like a present." ~ Akiane

O!
Anonymous Coward
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11/30/2007 11:49 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
Bible religions most violent, eastern religions most peaceful.
Don't Taze Me , Bro.
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
Bible religions most violent, eastern religions most peaceful.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 277386


Christianity, islam, judaism, baha'i...all originated in the middle east, all "people of the book".
Jdd

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12/03/2007 02:04 AM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
Yes, I think that the mind, intelligence, false ego and all senses are capable of 'hearing' the sound vibration of Absolute Truth.

The reason it's miserable to be living "in the flesh" is because when you're embodied in a material 'cage', you are forced by nature to suffer the pain of repeated birth, death, old age and disease. You are guaranteed to have to suffer these things -- there's no getting around it. Even if you skip what we call disease (like cancer) in a particular lifetime, your material body is still constantly degenerating as you move towards eventual death. None of these miseries are pleasant. If you can get 'off the wheel', and escape your material conditioning, and instead return to having a spiritual body, then you no longer have to suffer. You go back to the spiritual world and experience sat-cit-ananda – eternity, knowledge and bliss. This is what all souls yearn for, at the deepest level.

So to the degree that reincarnation means you're a soul "in process", sure, it's all good. But don't hang around in your material skinbag just for grins. It's far more pleasurable to enjoy your spiritual senses by being in direct personal relationship with God than it is to stay stuck in a suffering material body just so you can enjoy (supposedly) your material senses… and that enjoyment is really only a temporary cessation of suffering.


:)! How exciting! I've never heard of "Vaisnava" before :D!

I like that definition of the God Force being Pure Sound Vibration. I feel I have felt this before. Do you think/know that this might be felt by all the senses rather than just heard?

If all things are God then why is it miserable to be living in "the flesh" and experiencing reincarantion? Couldn't this be seen as a gift as well? Perhaps I missed this answer?

All in all, I really, really enjoyed this definition. I love learning new things. I'm honored by your gift!
 Quoting: :)(:
:)(:  (OP)

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12/03/2007 05:46 PM
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Re: Compare Religions/Spiritualities/Ways-of-Life...
Yes, I think that the mind, intelligence, false ego and all senses are capable of 'hearing' the sound vibration of Absolute Truth.

The reason it's miserable to be living "in the flesh" is because when you're embodied in a material 'cage', you are forced by nature to suffer the pain of repeated birth, death, old age and disease. You are guaranteed to have to suffer these things -- there's no getting around it. Even if you skip what we call disease (like cancer) in a particular lifetime, your material body is still constantly degenerating as you move towards eventual death. None of these miseries are pleasant. If you can get 'off the wheel', and escape your material conditioning, and instead return to having a spiritual body, then you no longer have to suffer. You go back to the spiritual world and experience sat-cit-ananda – eternity, knowledge and bliss. This is what all souls yearn for, at the deepest level.

So to the degree that reincarnation means you're a soul "in process", sure, it's all good. But don't hang around in your material skinbag just for grins. It's far more pleasurable to enjoy your spiritual senses by being in direct personal relationship with God than it is to stay stuck in a suffering material body just so you can enjoy (supposedly) your material senses… and that enjoyment is really only a temporary cessation of suffering.
 Quoting: Jdd

JDD ~

Interesting. What is the "false ego"? Does that, in your opinion, mean there is also a "true ego" or are you communicating that you feel the ego is naturally false?

I hear what you are saying. Personally, I feel that every state of existence is a blessing. Still, yes, in meditation and surrender I have experienced sensations of amazing, full-body Love. A faster vibration and a complete sense of Joy.

Still, I do feel we are here to enjoy the experiences here as well in freedom of choice. In fact, I personally feel we never leave. That it's all connected. Always. For a very important reason.

Still, these are simply my personal beliefs and, as always, they are in the process as I grow. And I do enjoy the process of growing.

I very much enjoy and respect your beliefs :D!!! I feel the same as you do in quite a few ways. I also feel different in some ways, but it is more important to me that in some ways I can deeply relate ;D!
“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover is yourself,” ~ Alan Alda
---
"Conscious breathing of the universe creates a symphony where we receive life like a gift and release it like a present." ~ Akiane

O!





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