Thursday, April 8, 2010

God says so ..This Too Got Me... Thinking

There are so many things where I could state my understanding as God says, … then God fills it in. Now it’s only right that people should ask, “What do you mean by “God”? What do you mean by “says”? Fair enough, times have changed so much from thousand of years ago when people were dependent on someone to speak for God. Nowadays, anyone can make some inference about God, about what is good and loving, about what is true, for himself or herself. Anyone can think it through, with so many facts, so much knowledge that is available now about the past and present, about the world, about human beings, human nature, and how human beings interact with the world and anything that might be not of this world. Who needs God?

Well it is hard to do all that without God. People come to all sorts of conclusions about what is loving and true when they try. If you look at all of that, there are parts of it where one person is irreconcilably contradicting another. Still some try to draw broad principles where many people agree, feeling secure that there is truth in consensus. Why believe that? If everyone makes the same mistake, it guarantees that the consensus will be wrong. It’s what science calls “systematic error”. Furthermore given the incredibly large universe of all possibilities for what is loving and true, what are the chances that unaided human beings are ever going to pick out the one possibility that’s real? It’s vanishingly small. Multiply by 6 billion people or 100 billion people, it’s still vanishing small that anyone is right, much less everyone is right, in his or her own way or otherwise. Still everyone gets to decide for himself or herself. It’s a free country, not just because of the Constitution, but because there is something natural about freedom, especially in our own thoughts, even if our thoughts are hopelessly tangled up in what comes to us through genetics and learning. Despite all that, we have some mechanism of choice. What should we use it for?

In ancient times, people used it to decide whom to believe about God. Could a prophet foresee the future accurately? Could a prophet demonstrate signs that show that God is with that person? I can’t do that. The closest thing I ever did to what Jesus does in the gospels is to suggest someone with hysterical weakness back to normal strength. That can be impressive, but it’s a trick, not a miracle. One might say it’s a technique rather than a trick, but trick says it better. One fools the patient into using the limbs that the hysterical part of them doesn’t want to use. It might look like a miracle, but it’s just psychophysiology and neurophysiology. It’s just science.I remember caring for the teenage niece of a local psychiatrist. She just couldn’t walk one day. Oh my God, has she had a stroke, MS, a tumor? No, in examining her she used her limbs subconsciously the way anyone with hysterical weakness does. If someone’s faking, it can be a difficult exam, but if someone is cooperative it’s easy to diagnosis hysteria. Mostly one can place a patient’s limbs in positions where you wouldn’t think it takes any strength to maintain, but it does. In someone with organic weakness, that limb falls right down. In someone with hysteria, he or she doesn’t realize what their limbs should do if they were organically weak.This teenager was interesting. Not only was it obvious that her weakness was hysterical, she was talking about how this was so unlike her. She kept talking about how hard she “strived” in school. What a strange word for a teenager. I guess her legs were sick of striving. They needed to have a talk, those parts of her that had different ideas on this point. But first she needed to walk, and any neurologist worth his or her salt knows how to do this. You examine a patient and manipulate someone’s limbs so that you can bring out the strength that is really there and then say, “Look, you’re getting stronger. You’ll recover.” If you do it right, you can suggest anyone out of the hysteria. Academic neurologists get so competitive about just how fast they can get a patient with hysterical weakness back on the street. Ah, it’s a gift, if you’re trained well. Ordinarily it’s enough to just talk a patient back into normal strength fast enough to avoid hospitalization, any further complications. Strangely hysteria is much less than it once was, less now than it was in 19th century Vienna. I wonder how much there was in 1st century Jerusalem. There’s no way to know except ask God, and His answer on that is not for the public.

I wish I had a technique to suggest people out of all their other miseries. “God says, …” has so much potential that way, yet it’s a different time, a rational time for the most part. How does one prove that it’s not a rational universe? I don’t know. I’m convinced there is a Spirit, through both secular and spiritual experiences, and the Spirit keeps showing me that there are ways to demonstrate God for people, even without tricks. They don’t work well. People have already made up their minds on so many things. Even first-hand it was hard for me to accept the truth of a being arising within my consciousness and saying, “I am God”. There had to be other things that confirmed that, and there were, but they are largely within my consciousness, not proof objectively. That’s good for me. Is there any benefit for anyone else?I’m still not sure what the main point of this is for anyone else. I don’t think it’s that everyone can experience God this way. Maybe that is the future, because if everyone has what I have here, the world’s problems would evaporate in a cloud of selflessness and efficiency. If that’s it, why not before now?

I suspect the real future is not so magical. Maybe everyone can communicate with God, but for most it’s limited. Still to know that would focus people on God instead of pride. That would be a big improvement. So how do I do that, even participate in that? Beats me, I just do what I’m told, really.

And it’s not all candy and nuts. Because I will tell you that when God tells me what He really would like to do, it’s to post some rules, tell people what horrible things will happen to them if they disobey, be God in all His glory, … Oops, tried that. That’s not the best way. Love is the best way, but how to tell that to all these dimwits! God says things like that, not me, only under extreme distress. I’m more constrained than He is. But I have the peace that comes with knowing I didn’t make any of this up, not one word. God says so, and there is more to back that up, even in the here and now, than anyone can imagine. You never would believe what I’ve seen, never. It’s easy, right up to some boundary that’s hard to cross, like trying to use words to describe all this.

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