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Religion aside: Is the real spiritual quest in life to remove all forms of bondage and set ourselves free?

It can also span across political history as well. Time and time again we witness oppression trying to destroy freedom. Look at those poor people in North Korea. They are living in bondage. They are not filled with the spirit of freedom to take out that pig Kim Jong Ill.
The Protestant Reformation was a freedom movement against an absolute and oppressive Catholic Church. Over time that freedom movement became corrupted and started oppressing non-protestants.
Radical Islam is one of those movements these days that is a arch enemy of freedom. Thankfully the spirits of liberty are finally starting to grow a pair and speak out.
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100322/ap_on_re_mi_ea/ml_gulf_poetry_of_protest
These examples are on a macro level. But the struggle is as ever much alive in the micro level in our everyday lives. Whether we are dealing with corrupt cops or exploitative bosses. Mankind will continue to face the greatest evil which is bondage. Awakening will come to those who realize that we answer to no one.
“Mankind will never be free until the last king is strangled with the intestines of the last priest”
Denis Diderot-French Philosopher

6 COMMENTS

  1. Great quote at the end. One of my favorites.
    I don’t believe it is a spiritual quest, but it is a quest for humanity to be free of oppressive political and religious governments who manipulate them through fear, ignorance, and superstition.

  2. You are correct sir! Even religion not aside, that was part of the purpose that God came into our dimension in the form of Jesus, to bring us freedom from religion and the bondage of legalism. Thanks for sharing neighbor.

  3. You’re neglecting one fact: People choose to join restrictive organizations. Why? Because most people don’t really mind bondage, and many prefer it.
    Freedom may seem like something that everyone would want, but that’s an ethnocentric view. Bondage is a value in some cultures.

  4. There is no freedom without Christ
    “Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. 32Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.[…]3 4Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. 35Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. 36So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” John 8:31-36

  5. Probably wouldn’t hurt to brush up on your scholarship about the Reformation. But your point is well taken. Modern scholarship reveals that the Catholic Church was not oppressive and corrupt as often portrayed by Protestant historians of the past (not so much anymore as Christianity is oh-so-slowly melding back together through the humility and self-confessing nature of The Vatican — which is why its under attack just as Jesus was under attack by secularists). While there were pockets of corruption in Germany and Holland during the Reformation, the Catholic Church was hugely supported by the masses, which is why the Reformation failed and why there are almost 2 billion Catholics worldwide today.
    There’s lots of more modern scholarship around that reveals Reformation was a movement by learned, land-owning city-dwellers who wanted to debate the Bible and base faith on human reason, not on the mystery of the Eucharist and the other Catholic sacraments. This “reform” movement never largely impacted the word-of-mouth faith started by Jesus Christ or the examples of the largely devout thousands of priests and nuns throughout Europe. So these moldy old philosophies are now footnotes of history, trotted out by those who still seek faith through reason.
    Which brings me to the answer. If you follow Jesus Christ, if you truly have faith, you are obedient to Him. And in your obedience, you give up much of your personal, individual desires and replace desire with service to mankind (as Christ and the Apostles exemplified). So it is in losing yourself that you gain your eternal soul. Buddha couldn’t have said it better. Ghandi couldn’t have been a better witness (boy did he see the danger of fundamentalism within any faith!!!!).
    Buddha and Ghandi however didn’t have the full faith and grace of the Catholic Church. Neither does Protestant Christianity, which was formed during the Renaissance as an attempt to reform Catholicism using reason — masquerading as faith — to replace the word-of-mouth strength started by Jesus Christ. Neither does Islam, which is why it is being replaced in Africa by Catholicism. One of the great stories of the last 20 years of Church history is the growth of Catholicism by word-of-mouth, by example and by good works in Africa. We can’t keep enough Catholic priests in this country to serve everyone; they’re all going overseas.
    But all truth about the reality of Jesus Christ is manifested in the mysteries, not in the heretical rationalizations that have come about since he walked this earth. Only in the Catholic Church do you have the Living Christ continuing to shepherd the faithful and retrieve the lost. Obedience to His Sacraments is critical, but never easy in a world that seems to always want to make the mystery explainable and logical. It’s interesting that the best of the Eastern traditions like the Buddha always stress the “letting go” of reason alone. There is implicit understanding that humanity has its limits. Where Buddhism advises that you learn to live within those limits, Christianity advises that you place your trust in the divine (which means you let go, which is central to the message of Eastern traditions). Protestant developments among the highly educated city folks of Reformation Era Europe have led to a tradition within Christianity of trying to control the mystery through reason, logic, philosophy…. all of that is based on the written tradition of Catholicism, the Bible. It’s gotten to the point where you have all manner of revisionist histories from the Protestant offshoots like the Mormons and their gold tablets, the Jehovah Witnesses and their bizarre logic and Christian Identity with the twisted focus on race and genetic heritage. Fortunately, the mystery of Jesus Christ is alive and well where it started: in the Catholic Church. The difference between Protestant worship and Catholic worship is that within Catholicism, there is no effort to base faith on reason alone; that was started by the humanists like Erasmus, the nutty Luther and the governmentally-inclined Calvin. Both had the logic down pat, but they failed to appreciate the mystery. Which is why only city folks followed them, and in the countryside, Catholicism never wavered. The examples of devoted lifetimes of priests spoke much louder than any written thesis or government-imposed religion.
    Remember that priests serve. They give up worldly desires, money, in service to their fellow man. His yoke is light. Not all Catholics are asked to give up everything for Christ, but there are systemized methods of expression the mystery of faith. The basic seven Sacraments for example. You can’t make logical sense out of them (which is where Protestants get a hard-on because that gives them the opening to attack the practice with logic and reason). There are other mysterious practices like the Rosary, devotions to the Sacred Heart of Jesus or seasonal acts like Lent or Advent. All of these are designed to separate man from his personal selfishness and focus him on the community of mankind. In paying attention to that, you lose your confinement within yourself. Like the Yes song “All Good People” suggests: “Don’t surround yourself with yourself….”
    It isn’t a matter of strangling kings or denying the servitude of priests. It’s a manner of letting go of the need to control through logic and reasoning the mysteries of the divine. Did you watch the Matrix?? The whole trick for Neo was letting go of the brilliantly deceptive illusion of control given by The Matrix and realizing quite simply, “There is no spoon.” Once you BELIEVE in what you cannot sense with the receptors given to you or evolved within you — however you think you got where you are — you become part of that “divinity” and glow like Neo, expand the very universe with your every breath and transcend your living, mortal confinement.

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