Friday, July 26, 2013


This quote seems to tie in with the Christian view of humans needing to come to earth as a testing ground.  (i.e., God can't do that for us.  And, yes, that means he is NOT all powerful.)  Rats!



      Being a child of the 60's, I am no stranger to the devastation of war.  Our boyfriends, our sons, our men came home different never to be the same again.  They suffered; many, many became addicted to substances; many could never work again.  This suffering extended to family, friends, and community.  These costs of war seem to be repeating and increasing.

      Once again in 1991 we sent our young men into questionable wars!  The result?  To quote several veterans, "It stinks over there!"  

     Do you realize what kind of havoc we are creating for our next generation?  Wars maim relationships; they tear families apart.  They incur both physical and mental health problems.

      Can we blame our men and women?  Absolutely NOT.  We send them over so young, unprepared and unknowing--naive about the horror they were to experience.  

      Did their families know any better?  Most probably did not.  Even if they did, I guess many wouldn't encourage their children to "learn to become leaders" and swallow the other insideous propaganda shown in Armed Forces recruitment commercials.  (Do you really want to see the world?  You probably won't if it is replete with slaughter and deprivation of other humans.)

      I am a child of WWII veteran.  At a very young age, I sensed the effect war has on people, on men who fight and kill.  It is sick.  It makes people sick.  The sickness then extends to their families and spreads like rivers of blood into society.

      My father was raised by a father who survived WWI and a prison camp.  We can only imagine the pain and the dysfunction that is handed down from generation to generation.  If you believe in the Bible, it is handed down "unto the 3rd and 4th generations."  Maybe there is some wisdom in that.

     But now, you who are living these wars, and waiting for your loved ones to return to you, and experiencing the damage done from the tragedy and sickness of war: do you understand? 

      Do you realize how wars are weakening this country instead of strengthening it?  Use caution when swallowing what the government is feeding you.

      Here is an article that I thought was insightful and touches on realities of life and war.  May it illuminate your mind. 

      (You don't see these images on corporate TV very often, do you?)

Victims of Chemical Warfare

By Rick Nauert PhD Senior News Editor
Reviewed by John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on September 1, 2011

A new study details the challenges service members may face when returning home from an extended deployment.

Coffins from the Iraq War
According to the researchers, depressive symptoms and relationship troubles are both risks for returning service members.

In the study, Leanne Knobloch, Ph.D., suggested ways for preserving healthy relationships – with many of the ideas helpful for any individual, not just returning vets.

Returning service members are at a greater risk of both depressive symptoms and relationship distress, and research shows the two often go together, Knobloch said. That’s not a good thing, since someone suffering from depressive symptoms “really needs the support of their romantic partner.”
Returning Vets at Risk for Depression, Relationship Stress

Two consistent themes were found among vets reentering stateside life. The first was relationship uncertainty, and the second was the awareness that conflict will arise as the partner or spouse interferes with the vet’s establishment of a new routine or everyday life.

The authors believe that service members should recognize relationship uncertainty and should address the issues, rather than avoid them, and they believed vets should work to resolve issues that will inevitably develop.

In the study, these situations linked depressive symptoms and relationship distress, Knobloch said. “These may be pathways through which people’s depressive symptoms make them dissatisfied or unhappy with their relationships.”

They may help explain why depressive symptoms and relationship distress are connected, she said, “and the why is important because it suggests how to attack the problem, how to break the link.”

Knobloch emphasized that having questions or uncertainty about a relationship is not unusual for those with depressive symptoms. “People with depressive symptoms have a tendency to question everything in their lives,” she said.

Feelings of interference from a partner are also not unusual, she said, given that each person has grown accustomed to doing things on their own during the deployment.

The study’s conclusions fit with a model of relational turbulence that Knobloch and others have created to understand transitions in relationships.

The authors found that distress in the relationship was no more or less likely for couples who had been through multiple deployments versus those who had been through just one.

“Military couples often say that every deployment is different,” Knobloch said.  They did find, however, that distress was more likely among those in the latter part of their six months after return, which fits with research by others.

“Our findings are important because returning service members and their partners sometime think that the transition home is going to be a honeymoon period where everything is just romance and roses,” Knobloch said. “They can be disillusioned if they run into obstacles.”

They might be better prepared for the potential upheaval, however, “if they recognize that it’s a normal part of the process, that many couples go through it and it doesn’t mean your relationship is not good,” she said.

Depression is a really hard thing, and if people can separate their relationship problems from the depression itself, then they’re a step ahead,” Knobloch said.

     If you are suffering and having symptoms about what you saw and what you did in the war, this level of discussion probably does not go deep enough into your issues, skimming over the realities and horrible after-effects of war.  

     You can get help in healing and dealing with your issues by seeing a good therapist.  Ask for one specializing in Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Friday, July 19, 2013


"The world of religion is one where dogma trumps common sense and reality is suborned by supernatural nonsense.

"I should say much more if I were not afraid of being heard by those who are uninitiated; because men are apt to deride what they do not understand; and the ignorant, not being aware of the weakness of their minds, condemn what they ought most to Venerate."


God Behaving Badly: Is the God of the Old Testament Angry, Sexist and Racist?  (Author: David T. Lamb) is a relatively recent book about the Bible and problems associated with belief in the Bible as a book inspired from a righteous God. It also addresses God's apparent controversial behaviors throughout the ages found in the Bible.

About 15 yrs ago, I made a fervent promise to myself to re-read the entire Bible starting from Old Testament.  After a long time, with little exposure to religion since childhood, my adult senses were throttled repeatedly while reading how God allows (?) makes possible (?) initiates (?) despicable acts toward his “children!”

Someone close to me once told me, "If you have any questions about the Bible, please feel free to bring them to me and we can discuss it!  I will attempt to answer those questions!"  So, I got out paper and pencil and began making notations and writing my queries.  

It took me a very long time to get through the OT because, with almost every page, I was consumed with questions about the nature of God.  As I progressed through the book, I became more and more disgusted and shocked with what I read.  (They didn’t teach us all this stuff in Sunday School!)  

I ended up with a stack of notes and questions that almost could have become a book in itself.  Who was going to take the time and effort to explain away all, or even effectively answer most of my questions?  It became clear that there were no answers—at least no acceptable ones to my way of thinking.  Ultimately, I threw my notes away.

With my senses developed over many years, and my critical thinking skills honed, I still could not make sense out of God’s behavior.  However, the haunting refrain I remember people in church saying, “God’s wisdom is not our wisdom.”  (Or words to that effect…!) stayed with me. So I continued to use faith.

At the time I was struggling with belief in God and the Bible, I was living in Greece on an island without a computer. (Hadn’t even touched one until 1999). I became very confused and frustrated with the cognitive dissonance I experienced while reading the Old Testament.  

I believed I had nowhere to turn for answers, except for a handful of fundamentalist Christians on the island.  Of course, speaking and trying to worship with fundamentalists truly made things worse!  I railed against their dogmatic style, the intolerance to my questions, the incessant singing of hymns, and other Christian songs, and the occasional outbursts of the “speaking in tongues.” Ridiculous. This was surely not what I was seeking. 

One member offered to have a question-and-answer session with me and 3 other fundamentalists. However, I was certain they couldn't answer my questions, especially because they believe every word of the Bible to be correct!  (Really?)

I was hungry for answers and for a more spiritual connection in my life.  So, when the local women’s expatriate group organized evenings with a Buddhist monk, I took the opportunity to learn more about it.

A young French man, quiet spoken, struggling with English, headed the sessions.  He seemed knowledgeable and intelligent, however, and kind.  I liked many aspects of Buddhism.  I wasn’t sure about the no-God theory, but after reading the OT, I was open to the prospect.  At least I wouldn’t be knocking my head against the wall feeling guilty for blaming an apparently contradictory, mean, sexist, racist, and murderous God, who needed to be obeyed, worshiped and loved all the time.  (And a God who was jealous and vengeful strained credulity!)  Anyway, the godless concept gave me some relief.

Buddhists main teaching is that all sentient beings desire happiness and contentment and that the “fly in the soup” is that we suffer because of our “attachment”.  So, to overcome suffering, we must learn “unattachment”.  The Buddhists believe that with unattachment we can still care and love because we are not dependent on love for anything, any concept, or anyone.  Voila, you are then open to finding happiness!  (Basically...I think that is their creed.  Forgive me if I’ve misunderstood the very complicated concepts of this religion.)

I liked many aspects of Buddhism. It is very clearly expressed and in very psychological terms; that, especially, appealed to me.  Yet, what I witnessed, what I experienced were the many trappings of religion:  special garments, a throne, incense, repetitious prayers, hierarchies, and some other very superstitious kinds of beliefs.  

Another major Buddhist belief was at once both hopeful and disappointing:  reincarnation.  I could see the concept perhaps working for humans, but the human to animal to insect thing was too much for me to swallow. Anyway, I wouldn't want to take a chance for another life.  I'm not that much of a gambler--or masochist!

As with every religion  I have investigated since (and there have been many), I discovered each religion required a vast amount of faith, and logic was, too many times, thrown aside or at least minimized (…or put on the “back shelf” as we were instructed in Mormonism).  We didn’t need to know all the reasons for everything, and everything would be made clear and just, eventually (after death).  A comforting thought. But that is just one price we pay for believing in a fairy tale like fantasy of a loving God who will save all the good people and let them live for eternity in happiness.  (No wonder it is so difficult for people to let go of their religions!)

What I needed was to believe in a reasonable God who was logical, all-powerful (with few constraints regarding physics, as I was taught?), who loves us unconditionally, and would not allow or cause his children to suffer. Surely, he could have thought up a better plan than for us to be victims of the freewill of others!

The whole concept of prayer is another clincher.  Why grant prayer requests of some people and not others?  Yes, prayer works--in a way--it keeps hope alive, and that is important.

I also had the choice to do what 12-step programs advocate, and just assign anything, even a pencil, as God, as the higher power. (Oh, THAT makes sense…!) Or I could just hope that the Old Testament is really screwed up and that man's translations and personal, political, power interests (namely the Jews?) corrupted the Bible and left us with our 21st century mouths hanging open. That, however, sounded like an illogical, desperate and pitiful way to validate my early religious conditioning.  Surely, God would not leave us hanging in disbelief and in such a wretched state, at the mercy of the freewill of those misguided individuals!?  Nope.  Not good enough.

This whole concept of obedience and authority and mixing religion with money…ack…just feels like walking through a dangerous swamp.  My generation questions authority (or did). In addition, obeying authority without very good reasons is not even in my DNA!  I can’t help it.  I’m just not made that way!!  I hate to go against the beliefs of my childhood, and I desire to please my family, but I found too many impediments to swallowing these beliefs.

I read a debate between two very respected theologians discussing the nature of God—one of the greatest concepts that troubled me.  What I discovered was a lot of hot air, twisting, and turning, and rationalizing, and maybes!  Unsatisfying.  The same old, same old...

After researching many creeds and religions, I decided that no one really has all the answers, or knows what they are talking about, or can present any logical, reasonable grounds for believing in God and Christ, as described in the Bible.  That realization was heart-breaking for me.  I was often jarred at the thought that I had been deceived most of my life.  I felt grief at "losing my religion."

In my opinion, all religions have very few answers and rely heavily on FAITH.  However, they also rely on standard, universal moral teachings that can be found in EVERY major religion.  Somehow, THAT rings a bell.  It seems that people have learned, evolutionarily over thousands of years, that in order to live happily and peacefully together, we need to live by certain rules. (Nietzsche called it "the herd morality.")

Does that make any particular church "the only true one" because they offer more answers and more rules?  No!  The conclusion indicates that there is wisdom in many theologies and philosophies.  But, it also suggests that we may not need religion to live happily and peacefully, as many agnostics and atheists testify and demonstrate.

I tried to weed out flaws from the roots of my conditioning, always asking, "Is what I had been taught in my religion true?"

Suddenly, my eyes were opened by a YouTube video called “Zeitgeist.”  From there, I was inspired to study the books of D.M. Murdock.  And the pieces of the religion puzzle started falling into place!  It was as if a veil fell from my eyes.


The following is for your enlightenment:

"If thou trusteth to the book called the Scriptures, thou trusteth to the rotten staff of fables and falsehood." ~Thomas Paine
"Whenever we read the obscene stories, the voluptuous debaucheries, the cruel and torturous executions, the unrelenting vindictiveness, with which more than half the Bible is filled, it would be more consistent that we call it the word of a demon than the word of God." ~Thomas Paine
"If a man would follow, today, the teachings of the Old Testament, he would be a criminal. If he would follow strictly the teachings of the New, he would be insane." ~Robert Ingersoll
"If a man really believes that God once upheld slavery; that he commanded soldiers to kill women and babes; that he believed in polygamy; that he persecuted for opinion's sake; that he will punish forever, and that he hates an unbeliever, the effect in my judgment will be bad. It always has been bad. This belief built the dungeons of the Inquisition. This belief made the Puritan murder the Quaker." ~ Robert Ingersoll
"I know of no book which has been a source of brutality and sadistic conduct, both public and private, that can compare with the Bible." ~Sir James Paget
"No other work has more often been blamed for more heinous crimes by the perpetrators of such crimes. The Bible has been named as the instigating or justifying factor for many individual and mass crimes, ranging from the religious wars, inquisitions, witch burnings, and pogroms of earlier eras to systematic child abuse and ritual murders today." ~Nadine Strossen
"The God of the Bible is a moral monstrosity." ~Rev. Henry Ward Beecher
"The obscurity, incredibility and obscenity, so conspicuous in many parts of it, would justly condemn the works of a modern writer. It contains a mixture of inconsistency and contradiction; to call which the word of God, is the highest pitch of extravagance: it is to attribute to the deity that which any person of common sense would blush to confess himself the author of." ~ Elihu Palmer
"It is like most other ancient books – a mingling of falsehood and truth, of philosophy and folly – all written by men, and most of the men only partially civilized. Some of its laws are good – some infinitely barbarous. None of the miracles related were performed. . . . Take out the absurdities, the miracles, all that pertains to the supernatural – all the cruel and barbaric laws – and to the remainder I have no objection. Neither would I have for it any great admiration." ~Robert Ingersoll
"The Bible, taken as a whole, can be used to praise or condemn practically any human activity, thought, belief, or practice." ~Peter McWilliams
"Let us read the Bible without the ill-fitting colored spectacles of theology, just as we read other books, using our judgment and reason. . . ." ~ Luther Burbank
"If you really delve into the Bible you will see that it is a maze, a mass, a veritable labyrinth of contradictions, inconsistencies, inaccuracies, poor mathematics, bad science, erroneous geography, false prophecies, immoral comments, degenerate heroes, and a multitude of other problems too numerous to mention. It may be somebody's word but it certainly isn't the product of a perfect, divine being. The Bible has more holes in it than a backdoor screen. In a society dominated by the Book's influence, all freethinkers should do what Adam and Eve did when they were expelled from the Garden of Eden. They went out and raised Cain." ~C. Dennis McKinsey


DM Murdock is probably the most influential author, until recently, to have shaped my worldview of life and afterlife--otherwise called "religion". By refuting the divine existence of Christ and explaining the connection between celestial events and religion, she effectively shows the reader that religions, all religions, are basically an off-shoot of pagan worship having to do with the natural revolution of the sun, stars, and other planets.

This is important because, if it is true, she can show that religions from the beginning of time had to do with our world and our understanding of it in connection with the universe.

Through the ages, humankind has taken these beliefs and used them for their benefit to unite peoples, gather power, and gain riches.  It is a theme that repeats itself.

If you have an open mind, one that can effectively deal with fear, she will open the possibilities of other worldviews to you in such a way that will be difficult (if you are a critical thinker) to refute.
Acharya S, as she is referred to, uses many sources, both old and new, and weaves them together to create a clear and believable tapestry of the origins of religion. 

Why is this important?  Because the downfall of this world is strongly based on religious differences, prophecies, and evil beliefs that many in the world are working on to create the unnecessary "actuality of prophecies" of the Bible, among other books.  She wants, more than anything for that "train" to stop!

Consider her theses, her theories, and try to dispute them, even if you are offended or don't agree.  Please use the brain God gave you.
Acharya may sound like an atheist, but is admittedly an agnostic.  I respect her for that theological stance.  I never thought I would be persuaded by any literature or theory to consider that either Christ never lived or that he was not divine.  
Think of the impact of that statement!  Christ is not divine.  It is difficult enough to abandon the faith of your childhood, much less to realize that Christianity is just the historical repetition of many savior Gods stemming back to early Paganism.

Some believers might say, "Well, the devil helped men create those beliefs to fool us."  Or, "See how important and essential those savior beliefs have been to mankind throughout history--there must be truth to it."--as if those were solid refutations of the facts and logic behind what Acharya and other researchers have uncovered.

Think about it--really???  I am tired of religions "cherry picking" when it comes to supporting their beliefs.  If something is considered against the religion's teachings then it is Satan's influence; if it is good, then it is God working through (even the subconscious) man.  Sounds nice to the believer.  Gives them something to prop up their doubts.  However, it rails against logic and exposes prejudice!

Really, the devil influenced all those generations of thousands of years to believe in a savior to discount the "true" savior?  Does the devil have more interest or power over God's influence; or is man so weak--such a lost cause? Or, that the concept of needing a savior to exonerate us of our "sins", exists in man's soul and replays throughout history, thereby "proving" the divinity of the principle.

Or does it make more sense that, humankind has always been in awe and enamored of the celestial movements and has tried to give meaning to those phenomena? 

And why would God, who claims to love his children, make it so incredibly difficult to believe in him and his "plan" for humankind?  What kind of parent is that?  The usual response?  "It is not for us to know the ways of God; you must use faith."  Really?  Mustn't we also use our God-given intelligence--and where do you draw the line.  Most Christian churches will say you draw the line at doubt, then use faith.  (Mmmm.....very convenient.)  "In the meantime, keep giving us your money and your service to prove that you are a good person who deserves the rewards of the afterlife."

Acharya explains how religious phenomena most likely came to pass in a very logical way.  She is especially adept at showing how the early church (Catholics) used and misused the early texts of Christians and Gnostics to serve their own purposes--the capricious and political ways in which beliefs were tossed aside, kept from the scriptures.  She even quotes one the early leaders as saying that they have created a wonderful fantasy that will give them power over many.  (If I'm not mistaken, it is Bishop Eusebius.)  She has the references to back it all up.  Nothing is left to chance or to blind faith.

I urge you to use your intelligence and reach out to read some of these materials.  If you are so sure of your beliefs, then what do you have to fear?   The devil?  Is not God more powerful?  And, if the Holy Ghost is with you, surely he will keep you on the right track??? "Oh, ye of little faith..." what do you fear?  Cannot all knowledge be used for good?  "The glory of God is intelligence!"  It seems to me we should use it!

Would you rather live in sublime ignorance and belief in comforting fantasies, and one day be slapped in the face with reality for eternity?  Or would you rather open your minds now, in this world, that the world propagates these myths, allowing you to progress and ultimately be "freed"?  

Pray about it, if you must.  But know that prayer and faith create beliefs, and, while it can be powerful, it also can be deceiving because the thoughts behind the prayers and faith, in turn, create emotions--they are not witnesses of the Holy Ghost.  That is Psychology 101.  (Look up cognitive therapy.)

I wish you well and much courage on your journey! 



Here are some quotes to chew on while considering this question:

Without health, life is not life; it is only a state of langour and suffering - an image of death. ~Buddha
We shall draw from the heart of suffering itself the means of inspiration and survival. ~Winston Churchill
Human progress is neither automatic nor inevitable... Every step toward the goal of justice requires sacrifice, suffering, and struggle; the tireless exertions and passionate concern of dedicated individuals. ~Martin Luther King, Jr.
To live is to suffer, to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering. ~Friedrich Nietzsche
Rejoicing in our joy, not suffering over our suffering, makes someone a friend. ~Friedrich Nietzsche
Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars. ~Khalil Gibran
Suffering becomes beautiful when anyone bears great calamities with cheerfulness, not through insensibility but through greatness of mind. ~Aristotle
Injustice is censured because the censures are afraid of suffering, and not from any fear which they have of doing injustice. ~Plato
Absence and death are the same - only that in death there is no suffering. ~Theodore Roosevelt
Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved. ~Helen Keller
Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it. ~Helen Keller
We are never so defenseless against suffering as when we love. ~Sigmund Freud
The modern mind is in complete disarray. Knowledge has stretched itself to the point where neither the world nor our intelligence can find any foot-hold. It is a fact that we are suffering from nihilism. ~Albert Camus
Life is full of misery, loneliness, and suffering - and it's all over much too soon. ~Woody Allen
I postpone death by living, by suffering, by error, by risking, by giving, by losing. ~Anais Nin
Three passions, simple but overwhelmingly strong, have governed my life: the longing for love, the search for knowledge, and unbearable pity for the suffering of mankind. ~Bertrand Russell
Most people get a fair amount of fun out of their lives, but on balance life is suffering, and only the very young or the very foolish imagine otherwise. ~George Orwell
Do any of these quotes sound reasonable to you?  Speak to you?  Which one(s) do you like the best? 



ZOROASTRIANISM is one of the oldest and was, at one time, one of the most widely practiced religions of the ancient world. 

Zoroastrianism is probably the first, if not one of the first religions touting belief in one God (Ahura Mazda).
"In Zoroastrianism, Ahura Mazda is the beginning and the end [Alpha and Omega], the creator of everything that can and cannot be seen, the Eternal, the Pure and the only Truth.  --Wikipedia

Zarathustra is the original name of this prophet, however, due to the Greeks' difficulty pronouncing it, they changed his name to Zoroaster.  (Nope, he was not a creation of Friedrich Nietzsche, Stanley Kubrick or Richard Strauss.)

Bible scholar P.R. Ackroyd states: "the whole eschatological scheme...of the Last Judgment, rewards and punishments, etc., within which immortality is achieved, is manifestly Zoroastrian in origin and inspiration." See:  "Also Sprach Zarathustra"

What else do they believe?

When Zoroaster was 30 he went into the water of a river and emerged with a vision that was later refined into a belief in one God and his adversary (Angra Mainyu).  His vision included that all people exist to learn the difference between good and evil with the primary goal of overcoming evil.

Zoroaster developed the concepts of freewill, heaven and hell, as well as a personal and final judgment after death (determined by a person's decision to follow good or evil). He also instituted the ideas of resurrection, and, ultimately, the destruction and renovation of the world.

Zoroastrians believe a Savior will come before the end of the world who will be born of a virgin impregnated by the seed of Zoroaster. 

"It is believed that key concepts of Zoroastrian eschatology and demonology have had influence on the Abrahamic religions."--Wikipedia

"Abrahamic religions" includes Christianity. And there are many more commonalities between this "first" monotheistic belief system and Christianity...

For example, Zarathustra has been compared to Jesus more than any other religious figure in history.  They both were against the established religions of their times and, as a result, were met with anger and contempt.  They also were both considered revolutionary figures about whom very little is known.