(Contemporary cross cultural spiritual guide) Faith in truth rather than faith in religion
Religion or spirituality has never been about following Jesus, Buddha,or Allah , etc . . It has always been about becoming an enlightened master. It is about walking the same path as those masterful ones who have walked before us, but in our own way. They said "What I have done, you can do also and greater things." They did not say “follow ME blindly”. They were saying: “wake up and do as I did, so you can be free!” …Why do you place your faith in what man created, and not the God within you? Man created religion, the churches, the dogmas, the spiritual technique; not God. Your religion should be following the calling of your Heart Temple within. It is as simple as that.
Any religion that actively recruits members is suspect. If a religion actively recruits and enforces its view as the one and only truth . . . run away as fast as you can. Blind faith in religion is ultimately insecurity in one’s own personal truth that leads to a feeling of not being able to save oneself. Religion takes your personal power away, and gives it to an organization run by men, not God. Religion is mass mind control that contributes to mass narrow mindedness. World religions play upon your insecurities like your fear of death, or fear of hell.
Jesus, Buddha, etc… didn't need, organize or incorporate a religion. They just spoke their truth to those who had the ears to hear. Religion is what came out of their teachings. Organized religion attempts to control or own this truth, so they can control and own you. You can't own truth, and no one can own you.
A multitude of commonalities between religions exist. Truth is truth no matter what name it goes under or what title we give it. The idea that one is right and another is wrong is dualistic thinking. This dualism is the catalyst for simple arguments all the way down to outright war. There is nothing holy about arguing or imposing one's ideas on another; nor is there anything holy or righteous about a war. I don't think God would be pleased at all with the arguing or judgments separating people by using his name.
We need to look beyond the superficial differences we seem to have and remember that in God's eyes, all life, all people are precious. We have so far to go, yet we are so close to realizing that everyone under the sun is on the same path. When we can have unity in all our diversities, we will have peace. We will have Heaven on Earth. Maintaining separations and superficial differences takes so much of the energy God gives you. No wonder you're all exhausted. Humanity is a tree and each of us are a branch in which our fruit ripens in its own time, in its own way. Our diversities are the gift we offer the world. Let go and love all your brothers and sisters as you love yourself, no matter what race, or religion, or culture you were born into.
*See Internet Aluna Joy Yaxkin
The truth-validity-usefulness triad: these three ways of measuring
Truth is an attribute of statements about the world, and not of the world itself. Rainfall is a process in the world — it is neither true nor false. It just is. But a human statement about rain, such as “It is raining” can be either true or false. How do we assess the truth of a statement? There is no foolproof formula or algorithm. The truth of statements about directly observable events is determined by corroboration. But as soon as we get to unobservable events, the trouble begins. Without the ability to confirm statements using our own senses, we are at the mercy of other people. The truth of a statement is often established using an appeal to authority. Validity means logical consistency. We often conflate validity with truth. Many true statements also happen to be valid, in that they are consistent with other truths, and can be related to them using the algorithmic processes of logic. The third leg of our tripod is usefulness. Statements (and systems of statements) are not merely true or valid. They can also be useful. You might argue that the power of science comes from its truth. But we must also admit to ourselves that there are powerful, world-changing statements that are not true, or whose truth has not yet been definitively assessed. Questionable beliefs and superstitions have power in that they influence the way people behave. Many of the statements born out of religious and spiritual tradition do not hold up to scientific standards of truth and validity, but even scientists are capable of recognizing the power of allegedly false beliefs in helping people cope with pain, anxiety, and poor health — and also in spreading hatred, conflict and ignorance. But even truth and validity do not always co-occur.
With these three ways of measuring, we can perhaps resolve the apparent dichotomy between theory and application. Truth and validity have their uses. And perhaps usefulness is a truth of its own. Each aspect supports the other, but they can and do exist independently of each other. Usefulness can breathe life into truth and validity. Truth can shine a light on the workings of power, and confer meaning to validity. And validity gives us a way to be cautious about alleged truths or attributions of usefulness. The truth-validity-usefulness triad gives us a kind of Instrumental Reason with which to explore the world and ourselves.
*See internet Yohan J.John
(Contemporary American pastor)
No claim of Eternal truth can be made for OUR (human) doctrines
Some years ago the evangelical movement of modern ecumenism proceeded under the slogan "service unites but doctrine divides." But this is one of the most dangerous movements there is today for all sincere Christians, and this is why we must address this word "Doctrine”. Those that want to lead us from truth do not make the distinction between true doctrine and false doctrine.
Although it may not be true in all cases, many people tend to use the word "Doctrine" in one way, which is "Doctrine equals Truth". We have not only heard the word doctrine used, but many of us have used it to define our confidence in the truth of our faith. But what is doctrine, and does it always equal Truth?
Let’s start out by looking at the word "Doctrine" so we can get a better understanding of the true meaning. The definition of "Doctrine" is something that is taught. A body or system of teaching relating to a particular subject such as the "doctrine of a Church". Doctrine is the precept of any teachings true or false, sound (valid) or irrational (invalid)..
Let’s read what the apostle Paul admonished in Eph 4:14-15, "That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:" Does the apostle mean that any doctrine is false ?
Here is a quote from a minister who stated that doctrine was not truth and we can see by his quote here where he meant. Quote: "Doctrine is not ‘the Truth’. Doctrine is our best approximation of the truth. It is what we have decided to teach and therefore doctrine is man made. No human being, nor any church, can claim to have discovered perfect truth. As long as we are human, we can make mistakes, and it is patently wrong not to acknowledge our fallibility in our doctrines. The number of changes we have had to make in our teachings over time is witness to our imperfection and fallibility in doctrine."
For Youngblood this minister came to the wrong conclusion that all doctrine is man made because he and those he has known have taught what they decided to teach. He may not realize it, but he is talking about man’s doctrine not God’s. When men try to interpret the doctrines of God they will never come to understand the truth, but as long as we get ourselves out of the way and let the Holy Spirit interpret the doctrines we will always have and understand true doctrine.
Doctrine that is not of God is false doctrine, and when men state that doctrine divides without truthfully stating that false doctrine is what divides; these men are without understanding, They ignore Jesus’words "My doctrine is not Mine, but His who sent Me. If anyone wants to do His will, he shall know concerning the doctrine, whether it is from God or whether I speak on My own authority."
Do we want to teach the doctrine that comes from God that’s given by His Spirit, or do we want to teach our own doctrines? Those who teach that doctrine is not truth are themselves not of the truth and needs to be exposed so they can’t deceive. They break down all true teaching on true doctrine because they are not making the distinction between the doctrines of God or the doctrines of man, and demons. Their statements that no claim of Eternal truth is made for OUR doctrines is true only when speaking of man’s doctrines. By not making a distinction they are reducing the true doctrines of God down to mere policy of men for the purpose of governing the church.
See Internet Youngbllood Timothy
(Contemporary American Baptist theologian)
God’s Truth versus man’s ideology
Truth embraces reality as it is. Ideology projects an image by which to gain power. Every time we step to pulpit or podium to proclaim the Truth of God’s Word, we do well to consider whether what we proclaim is God’s Truth or man’s ideology. Do we proclaim God’s message or our own? Are we promoting glory to God, or to ourselves? It is important for Christian teachers and preachers to know the difference from the inside out.
1) When we embrace Truth, we search Scripture to learn what God says and means, in context, and in accordance with the whole counsel of God. When we embrace a particular biblical ideology, we search Scripture for prooftexts to reinforce personal interpretations and viewpoints.
2) If we are interested in Truth, we will be willing to change our minds – to give up our own faulty or distorted views — when we see God’s Truth more clearly. If we are captured by ideology, we reject or re-interpret new discoveries to maintain what we already know.
3) Ideologs do not give up their ideology despite clear evidence that their ideology is untrue. Indeed, ideologs fight for their ideology when they see a competing view, denigrating both the messenger and the message. Truth-seekers embrace the Truth whereever they find it.
4) Ideologs see their ideology as Truth. When reality forces ideologs to change their ideology, they re-boot their modified ideology as Truth without recognising the contradiction between eternal Truth and changing views.
5) Biblical ideologs reject the notion that “Scripture” and “my interpretation of Scripture” are two very different things. Truth-seekers recognise the difference between the two, and seek always to discover what the Scripture itself says, in historical and textual context.
6) Biblical ideologs reject the idea that their view of the Bible is fallible because human beings are fallible. Truth-seekers understand the fallibility of their own views, and seek to improve the correspondence between their views of God’s message and God’s message itself.
Truth-seekers are open to accommodation, willing to change the way they see God and His message as a result of “rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Tim 2:15). They never crystalize their view into an unchanging ideology, but remain flexible to grow in their understanding of God as He reveals Himself through Scripture.
Biblical ideologs assimilate (i.e., reject or modify) ideas different from their own crystallized views. They “divide the word of truth” according to their own established views of truth, which they hold as True and Eternal. Truth-seekers hold their own views of God’s Truth lightly, and are willing to change their views in light of His Truth.
*See Internet Yount Rick