The Illusion of Knowledge

Here’s something to contemplate for a while. “The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance. It is the illusion of knowledge.” – D. Boorstin

We are all born ignorant, but with the potential to learn quickly – and we do. Ignorance is nothing more than an empty personal journal waiting for meaningful entries.

But the illusion of knowledge closes the mind to further thought. A new idea which has potential to carry one beyond where one is stuck in her/his current “truth” is vital for growth and development of the human being.

We were created to question, consider, learn through curiosity, and move on to whatever is better than what we had thought before. Progress is always better than the illusion that we have already arrived with the one and only answer. Illusion inhibits human development.

We fool ourselves by trusting words that come from supposed authorities, that is, people whose education level demands our respect. Red flags should appear immediately! And when they claim that such words are “holy” and that they are the very words of God, well, then you can be certain that their words hide illusion from you. “People of the Book,” as they are sometimes called, are still teaching, living, and trusting an illusion, a myth.

Their bean-counting retaliating god who supposedly rules from somewhere up yonder does not exist and never did. Their illusion has kept them from learning the historical development of ancient humans and their gods.

Not only do they refuse to listen and learn from historical records which clearly explain the origins of religions which controlled the ancients, they also refuse to consider how their own religion developed and changed.

How, where and when did the Hebrew religion develop during their history? When did the ancient Sumerian religion begin to influence Hebrew thinking? Although the seeds of Zoroastrianism were already present throughout the land of Canaan, they contaminated Hebrew thinking during their Babylonian/Persian captivity.

Pre-captivity Prophets spoke of mercy without sacrifice, kindness, and compassion especially for those in need, and an unconditionally loving God who was always present among them.

After the captivity, the Persian apocalyptic, retaliating, and judgmental god became the god of the Torah. The Greeks and Romans brought the Hebrews to their knees wishing for the coming of the apocalypse to save them from tyranny. Several self-appointed Jewish apocalyptic “Messiahs” attempted rebellions but only made matters worse.

A simple alternative message from a lowly Galilean peasant offered a merciful accepting and unconditionally loving and forgiving message during these difficult times instead of a punishing, getting even, retaliation message. His reality was similar to the messages of the pre-captivity Prophets that offered comfort and relief to oppressed people. It was a message from an unconditionally loving, forgiving, and ever-present Fatherly God whose justice for all could be seen in the reality of rainfall and providing for birds. How much more for you? But it was a message which challenged the Hebrew apocalyptic religion and its leadership. And the Galilean was soon murdered as just another upstart rebel.

His close followers scattered for their lives. Although some of his illiterate followers continued to spread his sayings orally together with his generous ways, but his message was soon discarded for the more familiar apocalyptic salvation message of a well-educated lawyer who turned the Galilean into the long-awaited apocalyptic “Messiah” foretold to save all people (not just Jews) from their sins by offering himself as a sacrifice to Zoroaster’s angry god. This was the message that spread during the years of tyranny and persecution that followed – about four centuries of it while Gentile Christians waited for the promised apocalypse to relieve them.

From that time on, Christianity received the backing of the Emperors and/or the Popes, and they soon brought their own horrible apocalypse on the Jews, the Muslims, the pagans, and other unbelievers, all in the name of their god and their confessions.

People of the Book still prefer to have their forgiveness paid for with a vengeful bloody sacrifice just because one of the writers of their Book, Paul, said it was so. And then they top that off with the threat of an everlasting punishment by a hellish fire prepared for those who have questioned their salvation mythology.

May our loving Fatherly God surround them with his patience and unconditional forgiveness such that they begin to see the Light of his accepting Presence among them and therefore have reason to grow and develop and to do unto others as God would do. – Love them. Let it be so. – May your kingdom come among us.

John Shelby Spong writes, “Ultimately, this will cause us to redefine God. – (much like the Galilean peasant did) God will no longer be understood as a supernatural being, who invades the world miraculously from somewhere outside it. God will rather be perceived as the Source of Life calling us to live fully, the Source of Love freeing us to love wastefully, and as the Ground of our Being empowering us to be all that each of us can be.”

Henry Hasse ~ May 31, 2014

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Published in: on May 31, 2014 at 6:55 pm  Leave a Comment  

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