Friday, November 11, 2011

Reading the Bible - Reflections upon getting started

The story of Christ always made sense to me. Despite my disagreements with many Christians, and Christian views over the years, I have always stuck with Christianity because I believe that the best way to live life is to try to live the way Christ did. No other religion offers it, so I have called myself a Christian. 

Living life in servitude to others, acknowledging that nothing that you do really is done by you if you allow yourself to be truly filled with divine energy,that each of us has a divine spirit connected to God.. These things always struck home with me. I have always wanted to strive to live my life like that, free of the ties of this world -money, fame, greed- and giving back to others, equally receiving. I think that the real beauty of humanity is able to really shine through in those exchanges, and truly believe that if everyone could truly live like that, free of ego and self-absorption, living in the moment free of attachment, the way Christ lived, that the world as we know it would be so profoundly different it would be unrecognizably wonderful. And Christianity teaches all of these things in such an amazing way, and every time I pray to God or Christ with a pure heart and good intentions, my prayers are always answered. I have had too many horrible things turn out just right, with nothing else to explain it but divine intervention, to deny the existence. I am so excited now to be learning about it from a more dogmatic perspective, even though I have feared it for so long. 

But for a long time I resisted Christianity because I didn't agree with or like the way that I saw Christians. As I mentioned earlier, I resisted the Bible. So instead I turned to Buddhism, and other philosophies to learn how to live the way Christ lived. I learned so much, but always felt pulled back to Christ. There was something about Christ I couldn't let go of. It was all of those times He had revealed himself to me as my brother, and God as my Father. I knew He was real, so I yearned to come back to know Him deeper- and so I am learning more about Him through reading the Bible. 

I am encouraged to find that so much of what I have learned from my new-age studies and Buddhist studies, and most recently Taoist studies, is embedded so strongly in what I read in the Bible. After reading the 4 gospels, I felt compelled to start at the beginning to really understand. So naturally I started with Genesis, read through Exodus and am now on Leviticus. 

I have been learning so much! God in the 'old testament' of the bible is so different from how I know God today, I am interested to see how he evolves throughout the BIble. I have also gained more insight into how Judaism, Islam and Christianity separated, and even a little bit about Hindu background, it's pretty amazing. These really profound thoughts come to me as I read, and I feel like every day I am understanding the human condition more and more, and how God relates to us all. How incredibly universal His energy is, and how amazing it is that He radiates through everything, from conversations to flesh to atoms to sunsets. It's been great to bring my own self-discovery of God from the past few years, into the light of something I so fervently resisted for so long. I hated religion for so long, especially 'Christianity', and to this day there are parts of it that I strongly disagree with, and there are things about it I think are extremely weird, but I have been learning to accept that nothing is perfect, and that the very reasons I wanted to run away from Christianity are the reasons I should stay- to be the change I want to be.

I'll share more on Genesis and Exodus in separate blogs. 

Please, share your thoughts and encouragement.


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