Friday, May 27, 2016

Choose To Be Saved

The notion of being "saved" is a bedrock tenet of the Christian faith. The church fathers struggled to make sense of mankind's relationship with God. Still today, many interpret the saving message of scripture as God bestowing favor on one who submits to the Provider's will. One might, however, choose another interpretation, a perspective of unity - creator with creation. From this vantage point being "saved" is not so much anticipating a gift offered by a supreme benefactor as it is awakening to the truth of the human condition. The gift is already bestowed - you are one with creation and one with the source. To be "saved" you need only choose to recognize and accept the truth. Being "saved" is knowing life anew. If you accept the truth: you are one with all that is, enduring and without need - you are "saved" then and there, here and now. Embracing the truth allows you to live from an unlimited, timeless point of view, safe and secure in the faith that no matter what happens in the world of form you exist beyond form complete and whole fulfilled and at peace. Wisdom has found its place. From this perspective you, an individual, on a journey through time and space, travel with surety knowing that all that is, is good. The New Testament reveals that early Christians struggled with how it is that one is "saved". Some contended salvation is through works and is therefore under an individual's control. Others asserted that salvation is through grace, a gift from God beyond an individual's influence. The disparity in these views does not demand an "either or" - they are both possibilities. Different paths to salvation by way of works or grace are possible, are necessary, are real, in this dream. Through the centuries organized religions, dominated by the interests of ego, embraced the idea that life is form and that somehow human beings can and must buy their way out of form. People suffer in this life to pay a debt. They redeem themselves by means of penance. This belief shackles the individual - lost in form, disconnected from the source - to a power beyond form. Here people rely on a benevolent, external power to connect them to the source - to save. They wait earnestly and patiently for salvation. The tragedy is, these people never realize they possess the gift they seek. The gift of grace, accessible to everyone, is the soul-freeing realization that the world of form is not "it". What we see is not all there is. Our physical senses do not allow a complete picture. Grace is a gift of awakening to accept, believe, live, knowing life is more than material surroundings and a series of events in time and space. Grace is the recognition that you are enduring, complete and unified not in appearance but in purpose, in being, in spirit. An essential point of the debate "works versus grace" is coming to grips with the notion that the intellect doesn't matter. Being saved through works is living the unity of the whole by choosing fulfilling experiences - activities of sharing, of charity, of love. Similarly, you can live within nature, a life connected to spirit, at peace with form, accepting what is and influencing what becomes. You are "saved". You don't need an intellectual rationalization, just an enduring, connected, vibrant faith. Don't live apparently disconnected from the source lost in everyday activities, seemingly alone and scared. It is then grace extends her hand, she whispers, guides, implores - never resting or sitting idly by. Wisdom beckons, truth calls, grace whispers. The will to choose is your gift. Choose wisely - choose to be saved.

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