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From The ECLECTIC CHURCH

© 1996

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Finding One's Self 

 

 

 

 


“God enters by a private door into every individual.”

(Emerson,   Essays,  1841)

 

 

The Importance of Individuation

 

     A cornerstone of the eclectic philosophy rests in the encouragement of an individual to discover, to know, and to experience one’s self.    Only in this manner can one truly have a religious experience which can relate to the Creative Force at the Source; that is, the element of the Divine within all of us.  In this experience we come to realize that we are all God’s children; and as such, what we do to each other is what we do to God.

     Jesus told us:

 

“In a little while the world will see me no longer, but you will see me; because I live, you too will live; then you will know that I AM IN MY FATHER, AND YOU IN ME and I IN YOU.

(John 14:19)

     In addition to Jesus: philosophers, artists, poets, musicians, mystics, prophets, saints and more recently psychiatrists have all made reference to this idea of a Divine or connective element in the core of the individual.  While much of Christian theology de-emphasizes this concept in favor of a more organizational approach toward God, many holy thinkers have embraced it.

 

     Through the efforts of men like Carl Jung, we have come to see that the religious ideal of the early Gnostic Christians, that God is within all men, is also a sound psychological concept.  The literalization of Sacred Scriptures, and the consequential distortion of the message of Jesus that often follows, has led us away from a truly personal elationship with the Divine.  Yet, the religious experience of God within is the only experience of the Divine that human beings can feel. 

      Jung states:

“The self or Christ is present in everybody, a “priori”, but as a rule in an unconsicious condition to begin with.  But it is a definite experience of later life, when the fact becomes conscious.  It is not really understood by teaching or suggestion.  It is only real when it happens, and it can happen only when you WITHDRAW YOUR PROJECTIONS FROM AN OUTWARD HISTORICAL OR METAPHYSICAL CHRIST and wake up this CHRIST WITHIN.  This does not mean that the unconscious self is inactive, only that we do not understand it.  The self (or Christ) cannot become conscious and real without the withdrawel of external projections.  An act of introjection is needed, i.e., the realization that the self lives in you and not in an external figure separated and different from yourself.  The self has always been, and will be, your innermost center and periphery, your “scintilla” and “punctum solis”. I is even biologically the archetype of order and --- dynamically --- the source of life.”

(C.G. Jung, “Psychology and Religion West and East”, Collected Works, Vol  11,  par 1638, c1958)

 

The simple truth Jung reveals here is that to know God we must know ourselves.   He realized the psychological  importance of what he termed “individuation”, which is the process of self discovery --- a process he deemed necessary for spiritual, mental and physical health;  He defines individuation thusly:

 

  “Individuation means becoming an ‘in-dividual’, and, in so far as ‘indivudality’ embraces our innermost, last, and incomparable uniqueness, it also implies becoming one’s own self.  We could therefore translate individuation as ‘coming to self-hood’ or, ‘self realization’.

(C.G. Jung, The Portable Jung, ed by Joseph Campbell,c1971, p121)

 

     The Gnostic Christians, and certain Eastern religious tradititions, recognize the importance of individuation for spiritual growth.  Many of our modern religious ideals have lost sight of the spiritual concept that ‘self Discovery’ is the best way to discover God.  Often, instead of leading us to God in a manner in which we can know what He/She is saying to us, religions tend to proclaim God’s Will in a blanket format for everyone.  But this doctrine fails to take into account that God created us as individuals who are diverse; would it not make sense that He/She would respond to that individuality?

   In the Eclectic Ideal there is no pope, theologian, minister, clergyman --- or any man for that matter --- who has the aithroity, or right, to declare for us what God demands of us.  We are striving to fill the need for a religion that stops pronouncing in the name f God, and encourages us to find God within one’s own self.  Our aim is to reverse the idea of preaching what God offers us and what God demands of us for faithful service; seeking instead, within our individuality, what it is we can personally do for God.  The first step in that achievement is to encourage people to look for God within their own heart and soul, so they can discover how God might be revealing Him/Herself to them.

     This coming to terms with one’s self, is a basic tool of psychology and a necessity for good mental health.  But psychology is not alone, and religion has to recognize this.  If we look to sacred literature of all faiths self discovery (Individuation) is also necessary for a healthy spirit.  Moses demonstrated this with his trip to the mountaintop.  Jesus with his forty days in the desert.  Buddha under the bodhi tree.  Each of these great men to the time, and in solitude, reached within themselves and discovered their vision of God.  From Plato and Buddha, to Jesus down to Jung, and in all the myth and sacred writings of all the great faiths, this concept of gnosis (self knowledge) is the fundament principle for spiritual growth.  Once discovered, this knowledge goes through life with us and can be drawn upon as we need it to face decisions and changes necessary in life’s course.

     Such reasoning makes sense even in practical terms.  If men did not take a stand on their own ideals and just followed everyone else, even when those ideals may not be accepted by their contemporaries, there would be no advancement of mankind.  Copernicus, Galileo, the Wright Brothers --- were all scoffed at by the main stream of their societies.  Jesus himself is a shining example of honesty about the self and living one’s life according to God’s personal directive.  When we are --- if we think --- if our faith --- if our ideas are the same as everyone elses, we wste the precious life God has given to us; for we could be missing the very purpose for which we might exist.

 

     At this point it is necessary to interject A WORD OF CAUTION before going on.  There is a fine line between individuation and becoming narcissistic or selfish.  One must become very careful one doesn’t fall into this rationalization trap.  Eclectisism does not preach a philosophy of anything goes.   Again, Jung explains it niecely:

 

“Egotist are called ‘selfish’ but this, naturally, has nothing to do with the concept of ‘self’ as I am using it here.  On the other hand, self-realization seems to stand in opposition to self-alienation.  This misunderstanding is quite general, because WE DO NOT SUFFICENTLY DISTINGUISH BETWEEN INDIVIDUALISM AND INDIVIDUATION.  INDIVIDUALISM means deliberately stressing and giving prominence to some supposed pecularity [self interest], rather than, to collective considereations and obligations [taking others into consideration].  But individuation means precisely the better and more complete fulfillment of the collective qualities of the human being, since adequate consideration of the pecularity [ the uniqueness of self as opposed to self interest] of the individual is more conducive to a better social performance then when the pecularity is neglected or surpressed… Individuation, therefore, can only mean a process of psychological development that fulfills the indivdual qualities given, in other words,it is a process by which a man becomes the definite, unique being, he in fact is.  In doing so he does not become selfish in the ordinary sense of the word, but is merely fulfilling the parcularity of his nature [in a responsible manner], and this, as we have said, is vastly different from egotism or individualism.

(Ibid, p122)     

 

      In spiritual terms we can apply Jung’s words above, thusly.  When we reach into ourselves the easiest to discover is ego, and if we stop there we can become selfish, indifferent and intolerant toward anything not compatible with our ego.  But in a state of individuation, where we can objectively look into ourselves and face the bad and the good, we recognize the Divine element  --- and in recognizing that element we are more keenly aware of its presence in all of creation.  We, each in our own unique way, are a part of the wholeness of things.  As the Trinity metaphor conveys, God is one, yet more than one.  God is God, but He/She is also creation.  That essence of God, which allows us to be unique individuals, is also a balancing tool whereby we can control ego interest for the good of the whole.  Individuation goes beyond selfishness helping us to see that whatever is good for the whole, in the end is good for the self.  It is the Divine paradox that can enable us to balance our lives.

 

     And individuation is not, as some would have us believe, a magical formula that releases hidden magical powers within us.  It will not give us riches, or fame, or power over others, and   attainment does not offer glory.  This is not to say an individuated person might not attain all these things if they work responsibily toward a particular goal.  Gnosis will not make our problems go away, nor magically remove obstacles; but it does help us to deal with the problems of life and our fellow human beings. 

     The fact is, as Jesus demonstrated, self-discovery can become a cause of personal sacrifice; that is it often makes one at odds with much of the accepted hypocrisies of our societies.  This whole idea of self-discovery revolves arount he concept that once we see and know ourselves (‘pulling the plank from our own eye’), we will be more tolerant of others because we will know at the root we are all the same (being able to gently remove the speck from our brother’s eye).   The more we come to recognize our own uniqueness, the more apt we might get at respecting the uniqueness of another.  The more we face God in our own soul, the better we will be able to recognize Him/her in another.

    And Jung was careful to point out, that this self-discovery isn’t just about discovering the positives of our personality; it is also the recognition of our weaknesses, faults and darker natures.  In recognition of these flaws we are able to begin to deal with them in a responsible manner. 

     We all have traits that are often not very likable, but we seldom acknowledge them.  In fact, very often our criticisms of others are the very traits we ourselves possess.  We don’t want to call ourselves names so we call another a name.  Sometimes even being jealous of one’s ability to deal with a flaw can create this hostility.

 

     The true reward of individuation is the realization we are part of the whole, uniquely individual, but nevertheless attached to all of being itself.  As we progress in the gnosis, our attitudes become more positive and our actions are often less self motivated.  Self knowledge may not make one rich, but it may help them endure their poverty.  Gnosis leads to acceptance and patience in life whereby we can make the most of life’s experiences good or bad.

    The Buddhist have a wonderful metaphor to describe the oneness and unique diversity of all things.

 

Legend tells us of a net owned by the great God Indra. It was unique in that it was made of highly reflective gems, and the wonderful effect of this is that when one gazed at a single unique gem, one could see the isolated stone in all of its beautiful particularity; and yet reflected in it, one could see the entire net.

(Douglas Fox, Buddism, Christianity, and the Future of Man,Westminister Press, ©1972, p48)

 

Like the net, each of us makes up the world of being, and that being is what binds us together.   Realizing it or not: when human beings suffer needlessly, when the greed of our socities exploit, when we destroy the earth needlessly and without concern --- We, in our unique individuality, pays a price!  One only need to look at the realities of our world:  the crime, the despair, the addictions, the neurosis, the wars, the financial chaos, the inequality, the bigotry, the hatred, the injustice, our own insecurities, and our fears --- are the price we pay for our indifference to the whole.

 

     Eclectisism is not striving to set itself to set itself above other religious ideals.  But we do feel, at least part of the problem, rests in the religions that set themselves up above others; religions claiming their’s is the only way to salvation, or they are the only true keepers of God’s truth.   Theologies, which claim they alone can speak God’s truth for another, are seriously flawed.  For one thing, they serve to divide us ofen creating a projection that contribute to prejudice, bigotry and the social injustices so prevalent in our world.

     In our view, God becomes bigger than any single definition.  We can see that His/Her TRUTH may vary from one individual to the next, often in proportion to the individual’s ability to understand; and, His/Her WILL might very from one individual to another, accommodating one’s unique individuality and purpose for being.  Our studies of the scriptures of many faiths, the myths (sacred stories) and all of inspiration have lead us to some wonderful universal messages:  In order to seve God, and better contribute to our world,  we must find out what God is saying to us --- In order to achieve salvation (to eclectic thinking is personal fulfillment) we must discover that which truly makes us feel responsible and part of the whole.

    Far too often, we are seeing religion as a matter of faith, when in reality; religion should be a matter of experience.  If our religious ideals are to survive, giving purpose and meaning to life as well as death, we must feel God’s love rather than merely professing it.  We must allow His/Her love to work through us; instead of projecting it outside to another such as Jesus.  In this way a mere faith is replaced with an inner knowledge that is attained by experience. 

 

     The problem with this spiritual fulfillment is that it cannot be taught, nor can one be converted to it, because this fulfillment comes from the experiencing of one’s self and the realization that we are uniquely in the Image of God.  About mere belief Jung said:

 

When people say they believe in the xistence of God, it has never impressed me in the least.  Either, I know a thing and I do not need to believe it; or, I believe it because I am not sure I know it.  I am well satisfied with the fact that I know experiences which I cannot avoid calling numinous or Divine.

(Ibid)

 

  The inspirations of God provide guidance in a wide verity of ways to achieve this fulfillment, but there are no set rules.  One not only has to be willing to find God within themselves, they often need to accept things they may otherwise not be able to accept.

      Contrary to the way it might seem, self-knowledge is not easily attainable.  It is not a simple process of knowing what we like and dislike, because very often we are in denial of what we truly like or dislike.  There are also aspects of ourselves that we just as soon not know.  But not knowing things about our inner self can often cause them to fester and manifest themselves in not so nice of way.  As the old adage goes, “Knowledge is power” and facing some of our darker aspects helps us to control them, turning negatives into positives.  Even deep darkness, such as criminal feelings might be turned into a positive (such as writing novels) when we are aware of it. 

     So this process involves a lot of hard work, a disciplined self objectivity, and a willingness to admit to our faults as well as compliment our virtues.  To Jung again:

 

To find out what is truly individual in ourselves, PROFOUND REFLECTION IS NEEDED; and suddenly we realize how UNCOMMONLY DIFFICULT THE DISCOVERY OF INDIVIDUALITY IS.

(THE PORTABLE JUNG, edited by Joseph Campbell, “Relation Between the Ego and Unconscious, p103)

 

        The human personality is a complex mechanism.  There are the obvious conscious ideals we live with and are aware of, with drives and motivations that are most often easily understandable.  The ego, which is the strongest aspect of personality, often rejects anything that is not comforting to its experiences.  Ego is self oriented.  And while ego serves a very useful and practical purpose, it can lead to narcissism and greed if we do not allow some of our deeper spiritual being to emerge. 

     And in that consicuos ego itself, we have hidden aspects which Freud called the “sub-conscious  and Jung called the “personal unconscious”.  This aspect of our consciouness is the recepticle of experiences that we have no need to actually remember consciously (or do not want to remember).  Along with a whole host of no longer useful memories and knowledge, this sub-consicous realm can carry bad experiences, guilt, and things we choose not to face --- and this too can lead to serious psychological and spiritual problems.  So in order to completely know oneself, exploring this area of intellect is a necessary component.  Such a discipline might be very difficult to follow because of the strong resistance of ego-consciousness, which can produce rationalization, projections, and actually decive ourselves.  This is what Jung termed “avoidance” and Jesus proclaimed our “plank in the eye”. 

     Avoidance thus becomes a matter of not facing things we need to face.  Thus, when we psychologically and spiritually grow, we need a certain amount of determination if we are to succeed.  These principles of facing the self are the cornerstone of psycho-analysis in its earliest forms.

 

     Jung transcends Freud’s psychology and recognizes a yet deeper level of human totality.  This, he called, “The Collective Unconscious”.   In his descriptions he elaborates that this is the force, which links us to each other, and the creation we are part of.   In a religious sense, this collective unconscious could be analogized with the soul, and at the core of this soul would be the Essence of the Creative Force that gives us being.  This soul is what mythology and the sacred writings are referring to when they point us in a direction that we are more than we perceive, made in the Image of God, or one with the universe.  This inner element becomes the ‘Divine gene’, if you will, which makes us children og God. 

     Jung tells us about this collective unconscious:

 

Hence, I prefer the term “the unconscious”, knowing that I might equally well speak of God, or “Daimon if I wish to express myself in mythical language.

(C.G. Jung, Memories Dreams And Reflections, 1961)

 

I have to admit the fact that the unconscious mind is capable, at times, of assuming an intelligence and purposiveness which ARE SUPERIOR TO ACTUAL CONSCIOUS INSIGHT.  There is hardly a doubt that this fact is a basic religious phenomenon. 

(C.G. Jung, Psychology and Religion, 1938)

 

If the theologian really believes in the Almighty power of God on the one hand, and in the validity of dogma on the other;  WHY THEN, DOES HE NOT TRUST GOD TO SPEAK IN THE SOUL?

(C. G. Jung, Psychology and Achemy,  1953)

 

     While this aspect of our totality can never be fully understood (for Jung tells us that like God Him/Herself it is unknowable), it does give purpose, direction, and helps balance ego consciousness with the collective world of which we are a part. 

     Jung speculated, and then supported his ideals with empiracle evidence, that: contents and messages continually input from this area of the personality.  In the Eclectic ideal of salvation, we must reach intot he depths of our souls to find out for what unique purpose we exist --- an answer only God can give us --- an answer that is only in our unique individuality.

   

     To provide the proper balance in one’s life, one must yield to their spiritual nature for that becomes the source of our being.  We need to feed it and care for it just as we do our physical bodies.  THIS IS NOT TO SAY THAT WE SHOULD NEGLECT, OR DENY, OUR PHYSICAL NEEDS AND DESIRES; but rather, that we strive to harmonize them with spirituality in order to exercise a self-control  instead of letting them control us. 

     As an example: there is a big difference in taking a drink because we want one; then in being addicted and having to take it.  This harmony and balance of which we speak is only possible by devoting the proper effort to finding one’s true and total self.  Ironically, it is a principle that is recognized by Alcholics Anonymous as well as other step programs, and is quite successful.

     M.L. von Franz, in writing his section of a book by Carl Jung, entitled Man And His symbols, said:

 

You yourself must become your own priest in your own inner church – in the church of your soul.

 

     This is one of the core ideals of eclectic Philosophy and Theology.  It is a philosophy of self-discovery, evolution, and growth of the individual.  We seek to encourage inner spiritual direction that is practical and has relevance in our unique daily activities; combined with, sound psychological ideas that acknowledge that man is spiritual as well as physical.  Our aim is not to present an individual with dogma, commandments, or a universal Divine edict of sort; instead, we desire to work with individuals to develop their own spirituality, with the ultimate goal being to help an individual discover the ultimate truth within themselves.

 

      Part of the problem with many present religious approaches is the tendency to be extremist about dogma, or plant unrealistic moral codes in the reality of our everyday world.  The use of fear and punishment by some faiths can be psychologically damaging to a wide variety of people, and in particular, children.

      While all religions have a similar message, many seem to loose sight of the profound truth revealed through them.  The simple reality is, in order to live the message of inspiration we must balance our lives --- relate the self to the whole. 

      Unlike some of the Buddhist’s interpretations, eclecticism does not advocate that people surrender their desires, or their pleasures.  It is not desire which weakens us, but rather, an inability to balance self-interest with the whole’s welfare.  It is not necessary to live life in self-denial, but merely to balance and control desires.  Self-discovery helps us to discover a higher purpose, which in turn gives us greater control in our lives, helping us to be more caring and responsible in our ego driven pursuits.  Religion needs to remember that ego is part of the Divine plan and cannot be ignored if one is to be healthy and happy.  Sexes, pleasure, want, are not evil things --- they are not some devious creation of the devil --- they are God’s gift to humanity.  What God really asks of us, is: to be responsible in our use of these desires, not hurting others in our pursuit of them, not being consumed by them.

If it can be said that life has a known purpose, one would have to conclude that it is the “experience” of life that must be the purpose. 

 

     Another area where many Christian faiths seem to have inverted the message is in the premise tht perfection and salvation are only attainable from something outside us --- Jesus, God, rituals etcetera.  This message becomes even more confusing when the concept that God is somehow pleased with a form of of some abstract self-denial such as celibacy is added.  At its worst, such conepts lead to a theology that embraces suffering and pain as a blessing of the Creator, and that pure pleasure is a tool of the devil and evil.  While suffering and pain are necessary experiences in life for from them we often learn; they are not any more important than joy and pleasure.  To suppress the desires that God has planted within each of us, pure pleasures that God has given us the ability to feel and experience, seems almost like it would be contrary to God’s intent of giving life.  Eclecticism disagrees with the premise that holiness is measured according to one’s self-denial.  We do not feel that a person who has chosen to give up, sex for an example, is any holier than one who has a healthy sex life.  Eclecticism sees a person’s so-called ‘holiness’ in what an individual does with the things others are claiming sinful.  To act responsibly, to be concerned with others, to be concerned with the creation around us, to be in control of one’s desires: these are the things that demonstrate a closeness to the Divine.  Very often suppression and repression only lead to neurosis.

     One only need look to the natural order God established to recognize the emphasis God has placed on balance.  Creation exists in a delicate system of balances from the galaxies to the smallest microbes.  The success of this system is dependent upon its individual aspects operating uniquely and individually and yet at the same time offering some contribution to the whole.  God built an entirely successful universe on a give and take principal from the smallest particle to the largest stars.  What convoluted reasoning could possibly see humankind as being an exception to that natural order?  The human race, itself, could not survive through the effort of a single individual no matter how hard they might try.

 

     Ou social contradictions are as profound as our religious ones.  While we talk about individual freedoms in our society, there is very little encouragement for anyone to become a true individual.  We are actually preassured by society to work and think imn a certain manner and those who do not do so are often ostracized in some manner.  The economic world strives to condition us to wear particular cloths, eat certain foods, abnd maintain a certain look.  Our educational systems indoctrinate more often than they teach individuals to think for themselves.  Entertainment is full of advertising, which is yet another way of conditioning us to respond the same to stimuli.  Our jobs, families and social and economic pressures dictate our daily lives.   Our political affiliations are put into neat little categories, seemingly forcing us to choose between the ideals of one or the other despite the dact we may have agreements or disagreements with both.  We encourage teens to dress alike, act alike, listen to the same music --- so often dictated by commercial interest.

      The eclectic ideal recognizes that certain social norms are necessary for a productive and healthy society.  And we also advocate that we take others into consideration before seeking any selfish pursuit.  But, the scales have been tipped here too.  Despite ethe fact that history, time and again, has proven that the majority may not always be “right”, we continue to declare our social order, our science, our collective intellectual opinions and our religious and economic ideologies – as being the best or the ultimate truth.  Too often people are discouraged from challenging these pronouncements being labeled abnormal, evil, cynical, anti-social, or revolutionaries.   

     But here again history teaches us an important lesson.  When individuals, who are well balanced between their individuality with a genuine concern for the whole --- the society often advances through their unconventional ideas. Yes, there have been many atrocities committed by independent thinking individuals, but most often they lack the balance to care for anyone or anything outside their own selfish agenda.  But if it were not for these brave souls who move forward with their unique dreams, ideas, and inventions we would still believe the earth was flat --- we would never see an airplane fly --- in fact, we would probably still be dwelling in caves.  Intellectual diversity is a gift God has given to man by which we have been able to reach out for the stars.  No knowledge can grow absent of individual thought, perspective, and a unique approach. 

     One of our aims in promoting self-discovery is to become a fellowship where we can encourage and share our uniqueness and diversity to benefit all.  We firmly believe that in such encouragement of individualism, combined with an ethic and responsibility toward the whole, there may be solutions to the many problems we face in our world --- new avenues of knowledge to pursue: and in that fellowship we might just be able to understand God a little better.

 

     In the Eclectic quest for some sort of Divine ideal or ethic to focus upon, in our search for some meaning for the existence of man, we have found (what we believe) to be, a manual of sorts, which can help guide us.  It is not a book of “do’s” and “don’t’s” or written edicts dictated by the Divne.  We see a universal message which exists in the personal dreams of individuals at an individual level, and at the collective level in the religions, myths, literature, art and music from human culture itself.   The core of that message goes something like this:  We must look “within”, and when we have looked deep enough we will see the “without” much clearer, realizing that it is a responsible use of our uniqueness that allows the whole to live --- and, we are part of the whole in our individual uniqueness.  All this is part of the paradox of the Divine, the singularity from which all being flows.

 

     Jung said, “It is the role of religious symbolism to give meaning to the life of a man.”  That is religious idealism at its best.  This is not achieved in magical thinking or superstition, or words, or ritual; but, only in a practical theology that relates to one’s everyday life.  In order for religious symbolism to give meaning to (this) life of men, it needs to be relative to an individual’s uniqueness --- that is one reason we have so many religions, God was keenly aware of this.    Too often when our religions talk about a “personal relationship with God” it means that we see God in the same way as everyone else sees Him/Her, but that is really not personal is it? 

     Religion should refrain from becoming yet another programming mechanism of our society.  The holy men who founded many of the religions sought to bring men closer to themselves, closer to the personal Divine; not, closer to a church!  It would seem their goal was not to issue commands that serve to control another’s life; but to present a philosophy, which would allow men to take control of their own lives.  Forgiveness, too, is the cornerstone of many of these prophets (including forgiveness of one’s self), but yet so many of our religions emphasize the judgment of God. 

 

     The Eclectic Concepts do not argue that organized religions have helped to keep our awareness of God alive in our world.  In so many ways, traditional religions have guided thousands of individuals to a higher spiritual awareness.  But on the flip side, not even the most ardent believer can deny the abuses and atrocities committed in the Name of God by religions claiming to be His/Her spokesperson.  And there lies the real danger of placing one’s faith outside the Divine.  In the Eclectic ideal, we feel, God is capable of communicating to anyone He/She chooses, and that no human being can speak with any Divine authority.   Even the Bible itself, although claimed by so many to be GOD’S WRITTEN WORD is subject to the interpretations of the reader, and not one word of it did not come from human hands.  Blake says it nicely, “Though we both read the Bible day and night, you read black where I read white.

     We readily acknowledge that the stories, scriptures, and many of the rituals of  our religions do contain the inspiration of the Divine.  But it is inspiration alone; not God’s written word; and this inspiration was never meant to serve as a means where men have the authority to speak for God. 

    God’s inspiration is in the sacred works, but it is also in each one of us.  To better understand any collective inspiration we need to experience the personal inspiration from the Divine.  God can talk to us if we are willing to listen to Him/Her. 

     The realities of God are not in the articles of faith of some church.  God’s inspiration is not to one person or one people.  God’s love does not fall upon one particular faith.  God’s reality is housed in every human being and manifested in the very creation surrounding us.  The Divine revelation is present in the complexity and diversity of creation, a creation made up of individual parts.

     A wholesome religious experience is one in which we experience the Divine for ourselves, and to reach its fullest potential we need to look within.  It is only in moving inward that we can clearly see what is around us.

    The fellowship of a church should encourage the sharing of people’s inner experiences so that others may also seek God.  Religion should seek to provide a means where an individual’s can follow God’s personal message to them, empowering them to contribute to our world in God’s chosen way.  Above all, religion should work to bring the manifestation of God’s Love into the reality of our world, for it is through the human heart, and our actions because of it, that God’s true miracles are brought into the everyday world.  It is our prayer that Eclecticism grows into such a religion!  Ask God if you might help!

 

    Let us quote Jesus in closing: “What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and suffes the loss of his soul (true self)?”

 

MAY GOD FLOWER WITHIN YOU!

 

 

ECLECTIC CHURCH FUNDAMENTAL CONCEPTS

 

 

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