BEWARE YE WHO ENTER HERE. I may be a heretic. (The original Greek sense of this word implies one who is free to choose.) But the evolved meaning is one who holds an opinion at odds with what is generally accepted. Thus, Jesus of Nazareth was a heretic who was guilty of choosing freely to oppose the mainstream religious practices at the Jerusalem Temple ; and of loving too much, getting himself crucified by those with whom he differed about how to worship — those who thought they owned the practice of worshipping “correctly.”
I hope I model myself after such contrarians as Moses, Socrates, Buddha, Jesus. But I may be very wide of the mark. It’s above my paygrade to know ; and above ours to judge. “Judge not, lest ye be judged” said Jesus. Yet so much of religion is based on the silly question of who’s in and who’s out? Who knows? Certainly not me. If you think you know, beware, for there are those who feel sent to kill the heretic. You might be drawn in to joining a murderous crowd.
Ok, about the title of my essay, The Internal God. The more common expression is eternal, forever-lasting. But most of our observations tell us that almost nothing is eternal — as even the Sun will eventually run out of energy, explode, or vanish into a black hole, whatever that is. Ah, but ideas can be both internal and eternal. — Just imagine going to the tool crib for a seven and being told they are all presently being used by other borrowers – sorry, wait your turn. “Seven” is eternally available to everyone. Your ability to grasp the concept of number, or beauty, or justice, entitles you to use it. But be careful — powerful tools often cut in two directions. For example, those who want justice when they’ve been wronged also want forgiveness when they have transgressed.
So where is this internal God? Let’s be clear — I am not God! But perhaps consciousness, the awareness of the presence of an ideal — the I AM — is God in us. This is an elusive concept. It can’t be possessed. But it can be beheld. Jesus said the kingdom of God is within you (Luke 17:20,21 see various renderings via pulldown menu). ¿ So, can you see God in me? (Probably not, if I choose not to see God in you!) Yep, words are slippery, and it’s our task to squeeze’em to get all the juice.
There’s a new book which speaks to such a broadened approach, titled THAT ALL SHALL BE SAVED: Heaven, Hell, and Universal Salvation. It is likely to draw fire from those who prefer “that old time religion” which crucified Jesus and his fellow heretics. An excerpt can be read here.