All this talk about the Rapture is very strange to me. I believe that when humans can love each other unconditionally — love their enemies and their neighbors as themselves — then the “Rapture” will happen. It will not be a big Broadway show; it will be a change in consciousness. This is the Second Coming. It will occur in the hearts of men. - Lydia
A man arrives at the gates of heaven. St. Peter asks, "Religion?" The man says, "Buddhist" St. Peter looks down his list, and says, "Go to room 24, but be very quiet as you pass room 8."
Another man arrives at the gates of heaven. "Religion? “Muslim.” Go to room 18, but be very quiet as you pass room 8."A third man arrives at the gates. "Religion?" "Jewish." "Go to room 11, but be very quiet as you pass room 8."
The man says, "I can understand there being different rooms for different religions, but why must I be quiet when I pass room 8?"
St. Peter tells him, "Well only Christians are in room 8, and they think they're the only ones here."
I am writing an article for The Nation about modern-day fundamentalists. I do not believe in an anthropomorphic God or devil, or in heaven as a "place" but I do believe in the law of love, the Christ Truth - which is to love our enemy and our neighbor as ourself. Our enemies can be our worst thoughts about our fellow man, and ourselves. We must realize that our thoughts create our reality. Here is an excerpt from the article:
Late in life when Gandhi was asked if he was a Hindu, he replied, “Yes I am. I am also a Christian, a Muslim, a Buddhist and a Jew.”
I hate to break the news to certain Christians who are waiting for the Rapture, but Jews, gays, Muslims, abortion doctors, and even liberals, are just as welcome in heaven as you are. God will welcome all his children, regardless of whether or not they have accepted Jesus as their savior.
A mensch like George Burns is not burning in hell on a technicality just because he’s Jewish, or just because some fundamentalist Christians say so. And can you imagine Billy Crystal, one of the nicest humans on the planet, burning in hell? Or Larry David, creator of the funniest TV series in history — going down in flames with all his Seinfeld episodes? I just thought of a line from Curb Your Enthusiasm when Larry David asks his father-in-law “Do Catholics say grace for snacks?” His father-in-law answers, “It doesn’t apply to snacks.”
I highly doubt any of these gifted funny-men are going to hell just because they weren’t raised as Christians. The Jewish people often have a better understanding of God’s will for us than the modern-day evangelicals. They believe we should make this life count by doing good deeds.
For all of those who use the LaHaye-Jenkins "Left Behind" books as their bible — the only people who are going to be “left behind” are the ones who think others will be left behind! I don’t say that to be cruel, but here’s how it works: since God is Love, and the kingdom of heaven is within you, then it’s obvious, isn’t it, that those who don’t have love in their hearts will not be “entering heaven?”
Since God is love, the people whom these militant “Christians” ostracize and judge so harshly — in other words, the pacifists, the anti-war activists, poor, the meek, the outcasts (meaning gays and liberals) and anyone who loves his enemy — will all be in heaven before the exclusionists will be. To attain heaven means filling our hearts with so much love, love is all we see.
This, by the way, is what the new bestselling book The Secret is all about. But it’s nothing new; it’s ancient metaphysics. It’s how Christ healed. He saw man through God’s eyes: as a perfect reflection of God. He saw no sickness, sin or death. Even Shakespeare knew this secret when he said, “There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” Our thoughts create our reality. God is Love and the Kingdom is within us.
There are seventy million Evangelical Christians in America right now, and many believe in the Left Behind revenge fantasy books, which hope to hurry up the end of the world in a blood bath of catastrophic proportions. These books promote the theory that good Christians will be raptured or “caught up” with Christ in heaven, leaving their eyeglasses and everyone else behind — everyone who didn't technically declare Jesus Christ as their savior. I guess that includes the unborn! This theory, believe it or not, might actually be determining America's current foreign policy in the Middle East. The Evangelical market is so big now corporate America doesn't dare ignore it. But I believe this brand of evangelism is not only severley misguided, but dangerous and sophomoric.
There is a panicky website for Dominionist Christians called RaptureReady.com. I read a comment there from a woman who her hair and nails done for the Rapture, because she had no idea when she would be ‘caught up’ to heaven and had to be ready at a moment’s notice for Christ, her bridegroom. Another woman said she had stopped giving to charity, and instead was investing all her money in the Rapture Ready website to warn others of the end of the world.
All this talk about the Rapture is very strange to me. I believe that when humans can love each other unconditionally — love their enemies and their neighbors as themselves — then the “Rapture” will happen. We will then see heaven as we “become one” with God, or love. It will not be a big Broadway show; it will be a change in consciousness. This is the Second Coming. It will occur in the hearts of men.
As the Native Americans reminded us: "No tree has branches so foolish as to fight among themselves."
I have to praise Richard Belzer for his fantastic new book "I AM NOT A COP." Belzer is scheduled to be on our radio show sometime next week. I hosted the World Travel Awards in 2005 with Belzer, Michael Imperioli (The Sopranos), Cheryl Hines (Curb Your Enthusiasm) in 2005, Greg Proops, Davy Jones (The Monkees!) and Martha & the Vandellas.
Also ran into Larry Charles, the brilliant comic director of Borat, Bill Maher's "Religulous," Seinfeld, Cheers, Curb, etc.. Larry Charles is one of the greatest comic minds of our time, and we hope to have him on our show soon with Bill Maher.
Quick note: Respected writer, friend and Progressive Democrat Linda Milazzo wrote a brilliant piece, " What I Learned at the Sarah Palin Rally Before They Threw Me Out!" I will publish the entire article later this week, but here is an excerpt:
By unleashing Sarah Palin, John McCain has reinvigorated the anti-choice/anti-woman/anti-reproductive rights fanatics, who not long ago were at the forefront of domestic terror. Interesting that Palin insinuates Obama when referring to: "terrorists who would target their own country"when it's those who share her ideology who have committed heinous domestic crimes. Let us not forget the health-care workers who were murdered by anti-choice radicals who share Palin's no exceptions for abortion beliefs. Let us not forget the women and family clinics that were bombed. Let us not forget Eric Rudolph - the anti-abortion terrorist who killed two people and injured 100 others during the Atlanta Olympics in 1996. The same Eric Rudolph who bombed abortion clinics that killed even more people. The same Eric Rudolph who sadistically attacked a gay bar. Let us not forget that the Sarah Palin wing of anti-choice fanaticism victimized America for years, committing crime after heinous crime. What John McCain has unleashed on America with his choice of Sarah Palin is an outright invitation to these cults to wreak havoc all over again.On Saturday I got a taste of this anti-choice fanaticism as Palin's zealots shouted "baby killers" at the pro-Obama activists outside.
So, Where's That ACORN 'Voter Fraud'?! It Doesn't Exist, But That Fact Won't Keep the Wingnuts From Claiming Otherwise...
-- Brad Friedman
So far, nobody's been able to offer us a single instance of voter fraud as committed by ACORN, or even by any of the 1.3 million registered by them over the past two years. You sure wouldn't know it if you listened to the crazed rightwingers...
** McCain Was ACORN Keynote Speaker in '06: (Video) Tells crowd they are "what makes America special"
* Brad at UK's Guardian: 'The Republican Voter Fraud Hoax'
* 1.3 Million Reasons for the GOP 'Dixie-Chicking' of ACORN
* IRONY ALERT: FL's 'Vote-Rigging' Feeney Alleges 'Voter Fraud'
*E-Vote Company Added 1000s of Extra Votes in D.C.
* November Surprise: 1000s Illegally Purged From Voter Rolls
So Where's the ACORN 'Voter Fraud'?
It Doesn't Exist, But That Fact Won't Keep the Wingnuts From Claiming Otherwise...
-- Brad Friedman
So where's the "voter fraud"?
Fox "News" and its Rupert Murdoch-owned print brethren, the New York Post, continue to bang the GOP's phony ACORN "voter fraud" drum, but as far as I can tell, they've failed to come up with a single incident of any actual voter fraud committed by the dastardly "left-wing extremists."
Yes, Ann Coulter has committed felony voter fraud, but neither of the Murdoch outfits has yet to note that point, even while they go wall-to-wall with misleading reports claiming that ACORN is committing massive "voter fraud" on behalf of the Democrats.
So, as it's now been revealed that John McCain himself was a keynote speaker at a 2006 ACORN rally (on immigration reform) in Florida, where he declared to the ACORN volunteers in the room that they are "What makes America special," and as I've been going back and forth with commenters on my "Republican Voter Fraud Hoax" piece at the UK's Guardian (which today has shot up to one of their most read items), still, nobody seems to be able to show me an instance of any actual voter fraud committed by ACORN, or even anybody who registered via ACORN, for that matter.
Those who wish to believe in the hoax, however, attempt to link to article after article about allegations of voter fraud carried out by ACORN. And yet, the articles themselves --- if one bothers to actually read them --- reveal that either 1) They describe allegations and investigations brought by Republican agents, with little or no evidence of any wrong doing, and certainly no "voter fraud," 2) Where voter registration fraud has occurred it has been by rogue ACORN employees, originally reported to authorities by ACORN themselves (who are the actual victims of any such fraud by their employees), or 3) Smoke and mirrors are used to cloud the fact that not a single fraudulent vote has actually been cast by anyone.
Let's take a look at just two recent, oft-linked, oft-quoted New York Post articles from today and last week to give you an idea of how the scam works, and how the rightwing suckers fall for it. Every time...
--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... BradBlog.com
The What ‘IF's’ on Obama & McCain
What if the Obamas had paraded five children across the stage, following the debate, including a three month-old infant and an unwed, pregnant teenage daughter?
What if John McCain was a former president of the Harvard Law Review?
What if Barack Obama finished fifth from the bottom of his college graduating class?
What if McCain had only married once, and Obama was divorced?
What if Obama had met his second wife in a bar and had a long affair while he was still married?
What if Michelle Obama was the wife who not only became addicted to pain killers but also acquired them illegally through her charitable organization?
What if Cindy McCain graduated from Harvard?
What if Obama had been a member of the Keating Five?(The Keating Five were five United States Senators accused of corruption in 1989, igniting a major political scandal as part of the larger Savings and Loan crisis of the late 1980s and early 1990s.)
What if Obama couldn't read from a teleprompter?
What if Obama was the one who had military experience that included discipline problems and a record of crashing seven planes?
What if Obama was the one who was known to publicly display a serious anger management problem?
What if Michelle Obama's family had made their money from beer distribution?
You could easily add to this list. If these questions reflected a reality, if the tables were turned, do you really believe the election numbers would be as close as they are? This is what racism does. It covers up, rationalizes and minimizes qualities in one candidate and emphasizes negative characteristics in another when there is a color difference.
And, think of this: the candidates' educational backgrounds:
Columbia University - B.A. Political Science with a Specialization innternational Relations.
Harvard - Juris Doctor (J.D.) Magna Cum Laude
University of Delaware - B.A. in History and B.A. in Political Science.
Syracuse University College of Law - Juris Doctor (J.D.)
United States Naval Academy - Class rank: 894 of 899
Hawaii Pacific University - 1 semester
North Idaho College - 2 semesters - general study
University of Idaho - 2 semesters - journalism
Matanuska-Susitna College - 1 semester
University of Idaho - 3 semesters - B.A. in Journalism
Education isn't everything, but this is about the two highest offices in the land as well as our standing in the world.
"At the end of life we will not be judged by how many diplomas we have received, how much money we have made, how many great things we have done. We will be judged by, 'I was hungry and you gave me to eat. I was naked and you clothed me. I was homeless and you took me in.'" - Mother Teresa
For SPIRITUAL SOLUTIONS to the world crises, along with some amazing prayer miracles in the next few weeks, please check out my other blog THE PEACEMAKERS* LIGHT OF TRUTH