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Showing posts from August, 2018

God - My Imaginary Friend

I hold the Lion's Paw Whenever I dance. I know the ecstasy of the falcon's wings When they make love against the sky, And the sun and the moon Sometimes argue over Who will tuck me in at night. If you think I am having more fun Than anyone on this planet You are absolutely correct. But Hafiz Is willing to share all his secrets About how to befriend God. Indeed, dear ones, Hafiz is so very willing To share all his secrets About how to know the Beautiful One. I hold the Lion's Paw whenever I dance. The psychologist Eileen Kennedy Moore tells the story of a friend of hers who was backing out of her drive one day, with her three children in the car, when one of them cried out “STOP!!” She hit the brakes and looked around wondering if she was about to hit, or be hit, by something. “What?” she asked, “You’re about to run over Boopsie!” was her child’s reply. Boopise was the child’s imaginary friend. I’ve noticed over the

Edward Carpenter - Prophet of Body and Soul

(This a reflection of mine from a few years ago) “Do I contract myself? Very well then I contract myself, (I am large, I contain multitudes.)” Walt Whitman, “Song of Myself”   Imagine yourself in vast museum or art gallery in the pitch black dead of night. You have one torch which shines a narrow beam of light in front of you. You can view the objects and images all around you, but only one at a time by shining your light. Now imagine that each picture in the gallery shows an experience of your life. One picture shows your first day at school, another your first kiss, your wedding day, or when you had children, or the thousand million other individual moments that make up your life. Which picture truly represents who you are? Which experience defines you? Or, do all of the images, all of the experiences, make up who you are? Or is the true “you” the one who carries the torch and who gazes on all these experiences from some other level of existence? This is an image that is

The Politics of Baptism

(This is a reflection of mine from a few years ago) In December 2011 David Cameron gave a speech in Oxford commemorating the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible. In that speech he said very clearly “we are a Christian country.” What he meant by that, he said, was, “the Bible has helped to give Britain a set of values and morals which make Britain what it is today.”[1] It was a pretty reasonably speech, its tone was not extreme, but David Cameron was nevertheless, wrong. I don’t think this country has ever been a Christian country, in the sense that it has never been run according to the teaching of Jesus of Nazareth, of any true spiritual teacher. To understand this we have to understand a bit more history than David Cameron does. When the Emperor Constantine made Christianity the favoured religion of the Roman Empire Christianity lost any chance of remaining true to its radical roots. Christianity became more and more defined by creeds, and less and less as a radical way o

What is Christian Universalism?

I've been thinking today about how I would express a contemporary understanding of Universalism. Something like this: Universalism means believing in the universal and unconditional love of God. God loves every person and everything in the universe. God loves everyone regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. God loves everyone regardless of their religion. God does not say you have to believe any particular doctrine to know the love of God. God loves everyone in life and death. There is no such thing as hell - that is a nasty lie. God is in love with you. God desires a love relationship with you. This faith is about loving God and loving neighbour - that's all that's needed. But it's not easy. It means becoming a disciple of love - letting love transform the way we live our lives - pursuing compassion and justice. Jesus is the prophet of love. He is the teacher of the way of love. Our faith is in the love of God, the oneness of humanity, and discip