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evil’s lie

  • You can prove anything you want from a single verse or passage in the Bible. It is a dangerous document, as history has shown
  • Once you start feeling sorry for yourself, you will soon Find someone else to blame, accuse or attack–and with impunity! It settles the dust quickly, and it takes away any immediate shame, guilt or anxiety. In other words, it works–at least for a while. So for untransformed people, there is no reason to stop creating victims or playing the victim.
  • It’s hard for us religious people to hear, but the most persistent violence in human history has been sacred violence, or more accurately, “sacralized violence.”
  • If I would try to describe the evil people and evil events that I’ve encountered, they’re invariably characterized by a sense of certainty and clarity
  • Remember, the very word satan means “the accuser.” Be careful when you see yourself accusing or as Jesus says “throwing stones” (John 8:8)
  • you are never absolutely sure you’re right when you’re living in faith? That’s exactly why it’s called “faith”!
  • Goodness, however, is accompanied by peace and patience, and even “consolation” as Saint Ignatius taught his Jesuits
  • the nature of criticism
  • The unconverted ego wants one thing and one thing only: control–and it wants it now. It never wants to change, in fact, it hates change.
  • you end up with toxic religion. You have a group that cannot tolerate evaluation or criticism and always thinks criticism is coming from enemies
  • ironic thing is that many of the supposedly outside critics of Christianity apparently believe the very values and criteria that the Judeo-Christian tradition taught them! Things like justice, love, truth and fairness are preached back to us by our supposed critics
  • the mystery hidden since the foundation of the world
  • This accusing and blaming pattern begins to be revealed in the very first chapters of the Bible
  • After any real religious encounter, people are normally dangerous for a few weeks or months, because religious experience necessarily makes you think you’re the center of the world
  • So why do people do such unloving and even hateful things, and worse, why does the Bible appear to teach it, and why does God appear to condone it?
  • The text reveals both the problem and the solution
  • the scapegoat ritual
  • Jesus does not define holiness as separation from evil as much as absorption and transformation of it, wherein I pay the price instead of always asking others to pay the price
  • After all, our task is to separate from evil, isn’t it? That is the lie! Any exclusionary process of thinking, any exclusively dualistic thinking, will always create violent people on some level
  • Jesus and Stephen state the truth, then forgive, let go and are released into a transformed state, that we call “risen”
  • hebrew preparation for the lamb’s war
  • the story of Jonah is the much needed journey from ministry as mere careerism to ministry as actual vocation, from doing my work for God, to letting God do God’s work in and through me
  • paul, the first catholic
  • Paul was set up to recognize the dark side of religion, the scapegoating mechanism, the self-serving laws of small religion. He went global and that changed everything
  • jesus, forgiver
  • The only thing more dangerous than the individual ego is the group ego
  • This is Jesus’ simple message: Holiness is no longer to be found through separation from or exclusion of, but in fact, the radical inclusion (read “forgiveness”) of the supposedly contaminating element
  • “All humans are blind,” Alison says, “but where the blindness is compounded by active participation in the mechanisms of exclusion pretending to sight, this blindness is culpable”
  • “the best criticism of the bad is the practice of the better”
  • The powers that be know that nonviolent prophets are a much deeper problem, but you cannot gather public hatred toward them

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