Sunday, October 30, 2011

DREAM: ONLY THE FUTURE...June 29, 2011

1. At my old high school. First at a football game. But the field was very low class and backward compared to how nice it actually was. The stands were small and wooden. The crowd was sparse.  Old fashion in every way, much more than how it was. I had been assigned to be an 'encourager' to the Coffee high team. It was authorized. I was to personally focus on encouraging a red  haired boy with a pony tail who was expected to be a star player. He rejected my  presence. His father agreed that I was not a good presence for his son or the team. They more or less said to me, 'thanks but no thanks.'  So I had no choice but to leave. I was searching for my dad in the stands. I knew where he usually sat. I was aware these were not the nice high stands I was used to and I could  not find him anywhere. He was not there. I wanted some consolation from him. 

Dream 2. I was a student and it was the first day of new classes. I was not familiar with the building. It was foreign to me. I was lost. Someone directed me to an open study hall that anyone could go to. It was OK in this study hall to whisper to each other. I noticed one boy whom I had come to realize that, though we used to be friends, he was not a true friend anymore. He had begun to run with ones higher on the social ladder. So instead of humiliating myself by speaking to him and likely not being received well, I passed him up to go to my more trusted best friend. But I knew he and I had also drifted since he had become a star football player. That was now his main interest and the other players were his closest friends. But he received me. I got some help about finding classes. Then I left  and found myself in the office . I and a girl there had the same problem. We had missed a class and wanted to know if we could make it up in another session of the same class instead of taking our free time. The dream ended without our finding out if we could do that.
Coffee High School...Florence, AL

REFLECTION:  Some dreams are what I would call 'wisdom dreams'  in that they  snap us out of our conventional rational way of thinking about life and  establishes our own place in the big picture. Such dreams remind us that there is 'a higher perspective' that may seem less certain than our conventional wisdom but is far more in tune with our actual soul life. There are few if any positive emotions here.  One positive is that a real friend is reliable even if there are times that s/he has other competing values. The only other positive feeling  about this dream pair is that my 'anima' function and I are in the same boat together, and have the same goals. We have both been responsible in the past and are trying to be now. We both know when others do not properly value us even though we bring no harm and possibly good to them. We don’t kid ourselves. Nostalgia is a real trap. The past is no place to find a present foundation or anchor...whether old places that once served us well , past friends, or even our parents or the 'father.' None of the past is really there anymore, not as something applicable to the needs of the present. This is a hard and sad lesson to learn. Only the unknown but certain to come future holds what we both(and likely all present day humans) need and yearn for from our collective soul.
Our Answers Are Not Likely Found In the 'Stands.'
 And if we have missed something in that past we can always catch it in a new and different form from out of the incoming future. The debt ceiling crisis, and the world-wide overall collective financial quagmire,  our nation is experiencing has really pushed many people to see that it is not the past that can be our national foundation any longer but only a new and never lived future. Perhaps and hopefully that  new world is beginning to be imagined by some while others are making strong last ditch efforts to return to some nostalgic 'good ole days.'  I wish that future would begin to show itself to the masses of my culture. And I long that  the personal and collective future I've been holding close to my heart for decades could now be realized. Jim

Saturday, October 29, 2011

HUMILITY, SO EASILY LOST... December 20, 2010..note to Edward Fudge

Hi Edward. You are surely touching on important themes that the Christian texts support. But is it fair to claim the virtues Paul lists as superior in all respects to what others also teach, either before or since? To think Christian texts are the most superior teaching on all matters of ethics and morality is an irrational and a less than humble attitude to have about ones own religious history and perspective. You discredit Greek thought for example by implying they did not recognize and teach the importance of humility, that humility was looked on with 'embarrassment and contempt.' This is just not so. In a blog type non-technical  page of a couple on the subject of Manliness at:
http://artofmanliness.com/2008/05/25/the-virtuous-life-humility/ the writers have a very solid  essay on humility. They begin  by emphasizing and giving a very good detailed example in Greek myth on the importance of humility. They begin: 
Our popular image of manliness usually consists of a man with a cocky swagger, a rebel who blazes his own path and stands confident and ready to take on the world. “Humility” doesn’t seem to fit into this image. Humility oftentimes conjures up images of weakness, submissiveness, and fear. But this is a false idea of humility. Real humility is a sign of strength, authentic confidence, and courage. It is the mark of a true man.

The Hubris of Achilles

The ancient Greeks often wrote about the importance of humility. A reoccurring theme throughout their literature was the shameful, often fatal effects of hubris-excessive, arrogant pride. For the Greeks, hubris meant thinking you were wise when you were not. One story that drives home the importance of manly humility is Homer’s The Iliad.....the whole article: http://artofmanliness.com/2008/05/25/the-virtuous-life-humility/#ixzz19Z8UXjjN
Achilles- Hubris Was Considered A Crime In Ancient Athens
 Why do you think  many Christian writers tend to understate  the moral and ethical accomplishments of cultures and religions compared to Christianity?  Is this not often an occasion that shows lack of humility, by boasting of one's own group as  knowing and doing it better than others? One can have great caring pride in the uniqueness  and specialness of their own clan, family or religion but when they do not see that others carry EXACTLY the same appreciation of theirs, they lack essential humility. Humility involves seeing ourselves and others(who are different)  as being  co-gifted  by God in various ways as part of the really large picture of humanity's search for truth and virtue. Sometimes Paul has an insight that adds to what the Greeks generally  said but no doubt there is much in Greek philosophy and religion that adds to  and surpasses what Paul, in some instances, has to say. This attitude that is not uncommon among Christians(and others) is not an example of humility. Boasting superiority is always an act lacking humility. Humility involves being a team player in the really big game of life and human development and spiritual progress. I would venture to say that is how Jesus felt about himself compared to others and what they also contributed to him and to his life.  Most of the 'we-them' mentality of Christianity cannot be laid at the feet of Jesus but by those who quickly followed. Many others have given us just as excellent insights, and in some instances superior,  about the 'Minding The Gap between our present level of development and the goal to which God has called us.'  To be able to confidently accept that and praise God for it seems to be part of  humility, whether  it is seen in  the human mind/life of Aristotle, Jesus of Nazareth or in the timeless symbol of 'The Christ.' Blessings, Jim
Addendum:  A relative new area of knowledge regarding our Christian heritage has emerged. Beginning in the early centuries of Christian history many of the original views and interpretations of Jesus by Christians were labeled heresy by the commanding powers of developing  church authority. This resulted in many writings, some of them as old as the canonical gospels, being condemned and burned. The Nag Hammadi Library of early centuries  Christian and Gnostic writings was discovered in Egypt in 1945. Only in the last fifteen  years have these become available for the public to read and study. Hopefully Christian's today will not have the same lack of humility our forebears did in claiming a  superiority over the  books that had been humanly named  by the Church as the 'Only Word of God.'  There is much being learned about the nature of early Christianity from such discoveries. Such learning requires a good measure of humility--- to let voices speak that were once hushed by a superior attitude that lacked humility. A good place to begin seeing what these books have to say are in the writings of Christian scholar of religion  Elaine Pagles.  One of her books Beyond Belief is a study of the Gospel of Thomas believed to have been written about the same time as some of our canonical gospels in the New Testament

On Wed, 29 Dec 2010 19:17:16 -0500 "Edward Fudge" <edward@edwardfudge.com> writes:


gracEmail®
Edward Fudge
MIND THE GAP!



Click here to view any of 1100 past gracEmails on 100 popular topics.

In 1992, Sara Faye and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary with a trip to England. We still chuckle about a recording on the London "Tube" or "Underground" (subway) that admonished at each stop, "Mind the gap!" The voice was telling us to pay attention to the short empty space between the train and the platform, across which we had to step as we exited. "Mind"--a word of many uses. You have a mind that reminds you to mind authorities, to mind your business, and sometime not to mind irritations and slights real or imagined. The proper use of the mind (as well as the body) involves what have long been called the virtues. But it all begins with the mind, for the mind controls the body.
In New Testament times, philosophers, students and tradesmen alike discussed the virtues, defined by moderation and the absence of either excess or deficiency. This was part of the common conversation on the streets of Philippi. Little wonder that when Paul writes Philippian believers a letter, he says much about mindsets and outlooks, thought patterns, attitudes and frames of mind. Read through that short, four-chapter epistle sometime and mark every use of the words "mind," "-minded," "think," "attitude, and "purpose." In nearly every case, the original noun, verb, or adjective that those words translate stems from a single Greek root, "phron," referring to the mind. Summing it up, Paul encourages his friends to fill their minds with whatever is true, honorable, just and pure, reputable, excellent and worthy of praise (Phil. 4:8). Several of those words name standard Greco-Roman virtues.
Paul's language of Koine Greek was a legacy of Alexander the Great, a populist descendant of the classicists, put to good use every day by first-century philosophers. But Paul's message was not the same as the philosophers', any more than it was the message of the Jewish rabbis, although Paul's writings contain clear signs of influence by both. The goal is not the Golden Mean of a balanced life, but life lived well to the praise of God and of Jesus Christ (Phil. 2:14-16). For Paul the virtues became incarnate in Jesus (Phil. 2:5). But Jesus redefines the virtues, which still include such traits as truth, justice and beauty, but for the believer also include traits previously viewed with embarrassment or contempt, such as lowliness and humility. Now modeled by Jesus, these traits are commended in other believers and are to be imitated by all (Phil. 2:6-8; 2:19-22; 2:1-5).
Philippi was an imperial outpost--a showcase city designed to model the superior civilization of Rome. Paul borrows and applies that thought also for gospel purposes. Believers are citizens of heaven (Phil. 3:20), he says, who model that lifestyle before fellow-residents in this dark and twisted world (Phil. 2:15). Spiritually speaking, Paul reminds us to "mind the gap"--this time, the gap between our present level of development and the goal to which God has called us in Christ (Phil. 3:12-16).
_________
Copyright 2010 by Edward Fudge. Permission hereby given to reproduce and/or retransmit without financial profit and with credit given.








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Friday, October 28, 2011

DREAM: 'WINDY', EXPRESSIONS OF THE ANIMA..February 9, 2010

This dream centers on the scene of a natural beautiful deciduous forest. The scene alternates between being peaceful and quiet and being stormy and windy. Above this scene are two white plastic Clorox bottles. One of them says in large print 'windy' and the other says 'Windy'. This scene persisted through the night as if to get my attention of this 'play on words.' Then finally the words of the popular song of several decades ago began to play; Windy by The Association. The song is a playful tune about a seemingly  seductive adoring female named Windy. Here are the lyrics:
Who's peeking out from under a stairway
Calling a name that's lighter than air
Who's bending down to give me a rainbow
Everyone knows it's Windy
Who's tripping down the streets of the city
Smiling at everybody she sees
Who's reaching out to capture a moment
Everyone knows it's Windy

And Windy has stormy eyes
That flash at the sound of lies
And Windy has wings to fly
Above the clouds, above the clouds

Who's tripping down the streets of the city
Smiling at everybody she sees
Who's reaching out to capture a moment Everyone knows it's Windy


 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ijTqDohph2Y
Exuberant Anima, Like 'Windy"
 REFLECTION: This is a sneaked-in anima dream. It is a very clever way to restate the 'collective unconscious' central goal of bringing harmony and unity of the 'opposites' of the present day human experience. The forest shows the high value placed on nature and matter. The common plastic bottles shows in contrast the value of wisely used human technology. The dream uses the clever 'play on words' of 'windy' and 'Windy' to make its point. (All my life I have thought that the song name was spelled 'Wendy'. But looking it up I found it is 'Windy.'  So the dream brought that mistake to my consciousness also.)The flashing from peaceful to stormy(windy) contrasts the essential opposite aspects of nature. It is not the peaceful 'wind' in nature that is sometimes harmful to humans but the unbridled raging destructive wind that is the evidence of some unharnessed rage in the Sacred, in God. It is the hurricane, earthquake and Tsunami that kill and uproot thousands of lives in one sudden swoop that reflects some immoral dark contradiction in the unbridled power of the Godhead. Set next to this is the peaceful quiet beauty of a green canopy looking over a flower strewn forest floor. This is the psalmist's God whose ' glory is present in the heavens and whose handiwork is seen in the firmament.' The dream shows the contrasts , the opposites, so clearly manifest in nature. These contrasts show that 'good and evil' co- exist in seeming equal fashion and cry out to be united is some kind of transcendent miracle of the Spirit.

The dream goes much further to show another harmony and unity anticipated and waiting to become 
The Spirit Wind Is 'Unseen.'
conscious; that of nature and Spirit, or matter and Spirit. Also implied is the union of 'male and female.' The dream image does this by using the words 'windy' and 'Windy'. Next to the bottle 'windy'(nature and matter and uncontrolled masculinity in its destructive power) is the one marked 'Windy'(Spirit and feminine) with its accompanying female song. This is so parallel to Jesus' esoteric discussion with Nicodemus in John 4. Here the Sacred is pictured as 'like the wind' that comes and goes as it wishes. I would add that sometimes that wind is sweet and soft and traditionally  'feminine-like' and other times an unrelenting devastating 'male-like' power that takes innocent human life indiscriminately without wincing, just like a terrorist. 
The Diabolical 'Mother Nature'


The 'opposites' that must be united scream out in the tangled imagery of the 'Sacred as wind.' In the John 4 text Jesus describes such a union of Spirit and Matter or flesh as being 'born again, ' or another translation 'born from above'. The dream makes itself clearly understood to ones with 'ears to listen and eyes to see.' As always, spiritual truths can only be adequately expressed in symbol. Living symbol that effects one at an emotional visceral level, not primarily at the logical/rational level. All religion is necessarily rooted in the language of myth and symbol. It certainly cannot come first as the language of human words. Words are not themselves symbolic and seek to explain what can be 'understood' rationally. Living symbol is able to give one a 'whole' experience for it does not fully explain its content  but points to something that is far more than what one rationally is able to understand, to something that has much meaning yet also remains mystery.(In our culture the 'cross' remains a living  symbol to some  in the way I have just described, but for many it has lost his symbolic religious power for people think it is something they very well understand. But just a little reflection would likely bring the realization that when you just  let the image of the 'cross' stand before you and withhold your rational explanations, it may take on again its inherent symbolism. In doing so we'd find  we would need to release our  'orthodox' notions of it for orthodoxy seeks to explain it and thus reduce its symbolic power. 

What we moderns do need explained is the reality of symbolic language and how it is the path to our religious nature.  No living symbol  can ever  be adequately grasped and contained in words, even as 'love and God' can't be.  Both 'love' and 'God' are words that refer to  fathomless realities in a psychological/spiritual sense. We sense, when we allow ourselves to accept the autonomous presence of symbol, that it  must surely mean far more than we can begin to comprehend or ever 'wrap our mind around.' So we can never judge or be the masters of a living symbol. Jung grieved that Modern people have lost the art of experiencing symbol. When we think we do 'know' the symbol's meaning we have let ourselves kill another  living symbol.  This dream is an excellent example of  fundamental reality of symbolic language.  Dreams always speak the language of symbol. When any religious/spiritual message is reduced to human words, it quickly loses its spiritually transforming power, loses its capacity to touch the human heart at the deep places.  That has historically been the role of  how symbol affects  human inner life but  modern humans have tended to lose touch with this whole realm of experience.  Our ancient forebears lived the life of symbol, thus had a more clear natural intuition of  life's meaning(truly religious), even if they were not highly conscious of it. Modern people have a very urgent and new challenge to be in fuller touch with the living symbols of the Collective Unconscious.
 
This is not the first time this living Anima archetype as 'Windy' has been brought to my consciousness. I'm sure some years ago either in dream or daytime image this same song came and was associated with the Anima in my conscious mind. The image shows the endearing , playful , charming , even childlike aspect of the anima. She is a Spirit figure; a fairy like creature or nymph. She is that semi human/divine creature of the
A Garden Fairy
psyche who seeks to bring the world of the 'collective unconscious' into human consciousness. She is not earthbound but has 'wings to fly above the clouds.' As we describe the anima and get in touch with her as a personality it is so important to remember that she is a part of the human psyche. I am moved to a deeply amazed and appreciative emotion to know that such a 'Windy is me.' She longs to be us. 'She R Us.' This is a quality of the human person that is available and seeking to become conscious in everyone. This is so different and so much more meaningful and empowering than literally believing in fairies and nymphs(and angels) in the physical world. These kinds of personalities are truly alive potentially in our inner psyche world. This is the difference in the experience of 'God being within' and 'God being out there'. This is like Paul's 'Christ liveth in me.' Carl Jung , as I've often described, stressed that this anima can become conscious in the male adult psyche and I have come to believe that she is equally part of the Sacred reality in the female psyche as well.

'Windy' is revisiting me here on my birthday (I'm writing this a 5AM on February 10.)in this sweet adoring way. She is full of cheer and brightness 'smiling at everybody she sees'. She is so alive, always fully 'capturing the moment'. She is 'life and life abundant.' She not only experiences and expresses a 'phileo and Eros  love' for the individual but she loves the community. She 'so loves the world.' She is 'tripping down of the streets of her beloved city.'
The Timeless And Cross Culture 'Lady Justice'

But 'Windy' is no sweet pushover. She is not naive. She can create a real ruckus before you know it because this lively, giving creature also 'has stormy eyes' that 'flash at the sound of lies.' The anima is deadly serious about the importance of reality and 'truth'. She is one who is more than capable of 'tramping out the vintage where the grapes of wrath of stored'. When once the anima was teasing me I exasperatedly asked, 'Do you ever get serious?' Her answer was two very impressive images: one 'three crosses with skulls on top' and another 'a mushroom cloud'  that filled the sky. This is an example of the wide range of how the anima presents herself to human consciousness in our day.


I think I know how she must view this time in our country where government seems incapable of, or unwilling , to serve the people. Where needed decisions to meet deep, threatening and growing needs regarding health care, education, planet pollution and fiscal responsibility are stalled by small minded would-be political heroes, bent on securing their own power and small visions at the expense of the serious needs of the citizenry. In many ways now 'as goes America so goes the world.' What is going on politically in America right now is extremely important. And anyone(s) who would be using such a moment to advance personal ideology or one sided ethnic or religious views will one day be seen as attempting to hold back the necessary changes of history by spinning half-truths. My guess is her ' stormy eyes are now flashing at the lies' that underlie such smallness. This same kind of emotion is stirred in the anima at all kinds of lies and half-truth that work against needed spiritual and psychological development in our day. It was surely this 'anima' Spirit that was active in Jesus of Nazareth the day he 'drove the money changers from the temple'. No one loves and pursues the fiery justice of the O.T. prophets like this unsuspecting anima, in this dream so innocently called 'Windy.'

This surely must be the most unexpected birthday card I will be receiving. Truly she has 'bended down and given me a rainbow.' I thank her. She is precious.

DREAM(nap): TOUCH FOOTBAL AND I CHING....August 12, 2011...updated May5, 2012

I and others were playing backyard touch football. I think we were in the yard of my Alabama childhood home but it seemed like it was my present ego self participating. My team's quarterback was an oriental female. I was out for a 'Hail Mary' long pass. As the ball came nearer it turned into a small piece of chewing gum. In a last moment stretch the gum barely touched the tip of my fingers and astonishingly I was able to momentarily grasp it, as it returned to the form a football, with the other hand for a touchdown reception in the end zone.

REFLECTION: This was a pleasing and exciting dream reflecting teamwork, mutual success, completion and victory at the very last moment. It was a wonderful moment to wonder if I were going to be able to keep control of the ball until it was secure in both hands.  (Ironically  the dream works as a fulfillment of the strong but unrealized  youthful fantasy I had of being  a superb football player. That fantasy is shown being  realized in my  inner imaginal world by this dream. For my present stage of  life this shows the very rich sense of  humor  so characteristic of the  source of dreams.)   I was completely unsure of the outcome in the dream. It was a moment where confidence and doubt were evenly balanced. And I did finally gain control of the ball( Only with the use of imagination... the ball  was as a 'piece of gum.') The dream shows it was only with  seeming magical assistance I was able to make the astonishing catch.  I will be so presumptuous to believe the dream speaks positively of the efforts I have made to creatively deal with ongoing inner/outer life experiences beginning especially three decades ago. Such congratulations and victory is not even close to any outward realization- and may never be; but the dream I think points toward such possibility. This was actually the first  recalled dream I had  after starting the blog work. So I think it was requesting that I allow this to become public on my blog.  I've been so absorbed inwardly  in old dreams and essays for the blog  that nothing new has made its way to recalled consciousness. But this one is very clear and  full of  meaning and living emotion. The dream may be totally about  aspects of successful completion of inner development. But I'm enough  of an outward looking person to hold that it may also point to eventual outer accomplishments of value to others besides myself.
Football In Our Alabama Back Yard

I think the dream emphasizes three aspects to the  'teamwork' that has been going on that makes such a suggested successful completion possible.  These can be well expressed in Jungian terminology. One is my conscious ego, what we all experience as 'me.' Another, as female quarterback, is the inner female anima representing my avenue and connection to the necessary material from the Collective Unconscious(The deep basis of all that is and can be which  potentially unites  all that is.)

Also the quarterback being oriental is I think an obvious reference to the I Ching(Book Of Changes, from ancient China the oldest written document in the world.) The important role of the I Ching in assisting in the process of guiding and channeling the meaning of my inner experience is the hardest one to acknowledge. This is because it is even more likely than the 'anima' to be seen by my peers as superstitious foolishness. I've always known that my reliance upon such a resource would eventually need to be made more known. But I've always, as I do now, see it the part of this team  most likely to be negatively reported  and dismissed as 'nothing' important or reliable. The reality is far from that and this will be one of my first attempts to make that more clear.
English I Ching Translation by John Blofeld

This is not a dream I've yet been willing to  share beyond two people. Certainly not to yet post on my blog for these very reasons. I feel somewhat cowardly and unappreciative to the I Ching for not doing so for it has been a steady and meaningful resource for twenty seven years. But I know if there  is any good  to come from this mutual work the I Ching would want it to succeed as much as either the 'anima' or my personal ego would.

 I should say again, as I told my walking friend yesterday, none of this inner work is what most drives my life or is the strongest expression and goal of my living Eros. This is all something that has come indirectly and perhaps as a necessary path to the fulfillment of the goals of my highest Eros imagination. All my inner experience, including 'anima' material and the 'I Ching', has insisted that this project is about love from start to finish; love experienced at a deeper human/sacred level by individuals and as truly the driving value for  further  spiritual/psychological development  of  humanity and all of nature. More than I have ever acknowledged the I Ching has been like a personal counselor and 'wise old man' to me since the Spring of 1985. For two years I used the ancient original method of 'throwing  yarrow sticks'(pencils) to ascertain the response of the I Ching to my nearly always desperate questions of survival. More than twenty years ago I experimented with a shorter and less ritualistic method of 'coin flipping'. And at least  ten years ago I downloaded free computer software for a computer version of I Ching. I've used it quite frequently over the past decade. I have found it to be a friendly non-pushy spiritual/psychological source of extremely practical and moral wisdom. The I Ching, in my case, is able to offer up what always seems as an appropriate attitude(s) to take about any genuine concern, worry or decision making situation. It is able to assemble and present me  with appropriate archetypal scenarios on which to reflect much the same way  as I do a dream. This is as well as I am presently able to describe how it has worked so faithfully with me in this long project. I make no claim to understand how this works. I've attempted that elsewhere as did Carl Jung. I rests on some kind of psychological/spiritual phenomenon. Jung's concepts of  Synchronicity and Collective Unconscious offer some rational for  this ancient mystery that seems as alive today as ever.

 I cannot conscientiously outright encourage persons in my culture to begin using it.  I think I agree with what Carl Jung said in His introduction to the Richard Wilhelm English translation of the I Ching in 1950. He said in effect his ' good wishes are with any person into whose hands fate brings this most unappreciated ancient spiritual/psychological work.' (http://www.iging.com/intro/foreword.htm)  To the well developed oriental mind, especially of the ancient variety, likely the I Ching made total  intuitive sense but I am a fully Western person and I can only accept this amazing accomplishment as a gift that assisted me in a most friendly and respectful manner, so oriental and strange still to me.  The I Ching fell into my hands just days after a dream  implied I would be needing to use 'strange resources' to find my way through the situation I faced. As surely as the 'inner anima' and the 'outer I Ching' have made themselves of such real, undeniable, living and practical benefit to me they are likely just as strange and foreign to my questioning Western peers.

With this combination of 'oriental female' quarterbacking  and 'oriental wise old man'  anything good that would ever come from my work with and on my inner life would have been completely and utterly impossible. That is something that I know at my center continually. So I will take the dream as the dream source's effort to state this fact of my life and try to share in its confidence the positive results it portends yet to come. Jim Hibbett

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

God, Man, Woman And Love...December 12, 2010... note to Edward Fudge


Suddenly The Clouds Spoke In Clear Images



During my spiritual/emotional development the past twenty five years I was drawn to various authors along the way. Much of this reading did not leave me with details I can recite but  remain alive and influential in my conscious activity and memory. I think they had even a deeper effect on parts of me that had lain barely or not conscious for the first forty years of my life. I doubt that I am unusual in that respect but my experiences made me sensitively conscious of such things. If I felt a harmony  with the ideas that came to me in my reading they became a part of my conscious value system. At least this is how it seems to me that much of my change/development has occurred.

But more profound than my reading was the advent of a different world, that of 'dreams and visions.' No theme was more central to my 'vision' experience than that of  'man and woman loving.' I can recall being utterly spellbound and fully alert for hours as every imaginable image of man and woman loving formed in the early morning clouds over my parked car in North West Houston. The couples had expressions of ecstasy on their closed eyed faces. There was a sense of total mutuality, equality and tenderness in every image. Preceding these vivid images A large 'Adam and Eve' appeared in the sky and passed over me. The couple was holding the serpent  between them and they were exercising some restraint on it. Following the 'love images' there was a repetition of large flying eagles. From that first experience for days and into months  I was being  astounded, impressed and entertained by a near continuous flow of images formed in the 'things' of nature. The images were continuously in the clouds, any fog or smoke that was available, the trees, grasses , rocks and also human made things. All of nature and the physical landscape were alive and communicating to me. I was connected with my total surroundings. There was no division between mind and matter , between spirit and nature. It was all one and all connected.  The images were nearly always available if I had the time and solitude to attend to them. I needed to be alone to do this for I was very aware that I would appear  'strange'  to any onlooker as I gazed into a fog or  focused on the grass of a field. I managed to keep living in a normal human way and my physical health was good. My verbal and intellectual capacities seemed  significantly stronger during the months I was experiencing  this sense of  'connection.'
Adam and Eve 1192 German Art

 Fortunately  I was quite isolated  at the beginning of this time in my life so could give much attention to the images. Early on a central image was a playful feminine personality who gave me an assurance that 'she' was a reliable friend. 'She'  was much more than human and had direct influence on what was happening in every continuous detail of my life but also of all the world about me. But she was also full of playful tricks and frequently led me in 'circles' whether I was in my car driving or attempting to do some task or errand. At some point I began to look back at my life and see how 'she' was behind many of  behaviors long before I was conscious of  'her' reality as a part of me.  'She' was definitely imploring me to trust her as a guide in every detail of life. I once asked aloud to her, “ Do you ever get serious?' At that moment three crosses with skulls on top of each appeared in the clouds and before I was done contemplating  on that a mushroom cloud formed and filled the space above.Early on I asked her, 'Is Jesus the literal Son of God?'  Her answer was an image of the head of a gorilla being gently pulled, as in birth, from a human  birth canal.
The Location Of The First 'Visions' -18 Years Later
I had spent the night before the first visions occurred on the streets of downtown Houston with homeless people, myself being temporarily homeless  I was presently without a formal job and extremely aware of the difficulty that my family was experiencing without my being physically present with them. I was a man in psychological suffering as I had never experienced it. My suffering was embedded in spiritual ecstasy and the uncertain psychological landscape between  conflicting  'polarities' including  'Eros and Chaos', 'freedom and destiny', 'spirit and matter', 'female and male','individuality and community' and 'heaven and earth.'  Only as a person having such an encounter with the archetypes of the Collective Unconscious(the ' Jungian opposites')  also experiences an integrating and uniting of them within can something  genuinely beneficial be birthed. Only with such a harmonizing of the opposites with both aspects informing and completing each other can a gift be received for both the individual and the community s/he is a part of. At age 40 then I had a reasonably well developed and growing personal theology that, though greatly challenged, provided some support.  No doubt the stress of my outer situation made me more susceptible to such a revelation from the Collective Unconscious. Any one of these 'visions' left me at first  with only two words to even try to convey what was happening: 'miracle and ecstasy.'  And these words had little personal  place or  meaning in my theology at that time. But these kinds of reality  occurred time after time for many weeks, even months and years  from when it first began.

Recently a neurologist I was seeing for a neck injury asked me out of the blue if I had read the book When God Was A Woman  by Meril Stone? I told him I had just completed it. We were both struck by the important historical information it establishes. I was amazed not only that he had read it but that he asked me if I had. That motivated me to  re read the chapter specifically on sexuality. It  regards those women who lived in the Goddess temples  of nearly all Eastern pre Hebrew cultures who were referred to as  'sacred women'. They are described as being involved in sexual worship there with 'strange men.' Sometimes after some years of  work for the Goddess in the temple they later married  to  become  very good  and reliable  wives. Any children born through this temple sexual expression  kept the mother's family name and she was their parent.   There was no dishonor in those ancient cultures for these women. Quite the opposite. Children were not  bastardized or likely abandoned  or abused who came from temple births.  These women were sometimes wealthy land owners. Such  sacred sexual practice was considered just that, not irresponsible unconscious, unremembered sex for sex sake. On first becoming aware of such historical realities the modern Westerner cannot fathom it and is likely to turn away in disgust at what was once deeply held and honored religious experience. What the 'stranger men' experienced was expected to be a passage into a deeper realm of spiritual reality and  responsibility to the community. This was religious experience that honored the place of living Eros in human spiritual development. Our culture has no such way or place to honor Eros and so this living god/human power goes 'underground', becomes unconscious, to arise in the modern world as unsacred pornography and or nearly socially arranged marriages as a way to 'control' it. Religion and State have cooperated in these unsuccessful and fear based ways of relating to Eros. I think my 'vision' experience was saying loudly that Eros must be returned to our culture. I most definitely am not suggesting we return to literal temple sexual expression but that the air and spirituality of that statement of Eros find a way to live in the hearts and responsible relationships of couples and lovers in the post modern age.  Our culture has instead created an ugly and nonspiritual  model of women and men's sexuality.  Only later did commentators take the word that meant then 'sacred woman' and translate it, with very negative intent, to 'temple prostitute', thus demeaning such women and the Eros of life they helped their culture to celebrate and connect with. 

The Hebrews, and other male centered cultures,  tried to drive all this out and created the first strong patriarchies in human history. Patriarchy lineage , unlike matriarchy lineage where the parent is obvious for it is the mother, had to be 'proven and kept protected' This became a task for the religious hierarchy, the Levitical Priests and law makers, for the Hebrew nation. Thus sexuality outside of marriage, no matter how loving or committed, was described off hand as sinful, base, low life and immoral.  The Hebrew law of Moses made this punishable by death for women. The Bible clearly shows there was no such strong law against  men for  there was no need to keep men from having sex with 'strangers'  or outside marriage to protect patriarchy lineage. Any woman a man secretly impregnated simply was put death. There was a constant message from Yahweh warning the  people to stay away from the 'groves' where the ancient feminine goddesses and matriarch religion  was still alive and Eros had not been turned into something evil. Often, the Levitical priests and the Hebrew prophets called for an all out assault on the native goddess religions of this land that flowed with 'milk and honey' long  before the Hebrews attempted to make it exclusively their own.

At all times for any surviving child, it was  known who its father  was. This  is what drove  the theme of the sinful nature of a woman having unmarried sex. The Adam and Eve story blaming woman making her character suspect put this into powerful mythical language that has more than any image shaped Western  thought about Man, Woman and Sexuality. The 'sexual laws' also had much to do with economics and keeping the wealth of a male run family in tact and under male control.  This  successfully totally shifted ancient cultures   from   a Female description of God to a totally male one.  From this Yahweh of the O.T. was born. The shamefulness of female sexuality, more than any mortal sin,  and the control and demeaning of women was sold eventually to all of Western society...first through Judaism and then Christianity(not with the help of any authentic view of Jesus' view of sexuality). So there is a good reason why a woman  has never adorned  most protestant  pulpits or likely even distributed communion until recent decades, why a man committing 'adultery' is defined as a sin against the woman's husband or father even if it were non consensual by the woman ....not to mention that a woman has never been a Catholic priest  or President  of the U.S.A. I should add that there are places in the Hebrew scripture and history where the positive aspects of Eros Love are strongly supported, such as the Song Of Songs at nearly the center of the Bible.

My 'visions and dreams' regarding human sexuality are not proposing a return to temple sexuality nor is their purpose to demonize Judaism, Christianity or Islam. Such confirmed historical  information about human sexuality and images of God means we need to UNDERSTAND the human spiritual path that has been trod in leading up to our presently internalized meanings of God, man and woman, the very fundamentals of life. We must take responsibility  for the effect that these historical movements have on our present sexual identity. We need to acknowledge this all has indeed happened and shaped us.  Then we can take more responsibility for what we really value  from it all and experience that famous quotation that  'you shall know the truth and the truth will set you free..... If the son sets you free you shall be free indeed.'  Jesus did not invent these timeless truths but he surely with expanded consciousness was aware of them, believed them and no doubt experienced them as central to his human life.

This basic information of When God Was A Woman, firmly documented even by the most conservative archaeologists,  is mind boggling, and if assimilated by many Westerners would change in amazingly positive ways  what it means today to be woman and man. The most profound implication of this information is central to the very first and most indelible 'visions' I had in Houston. I do not think it likely many , if any, Western men are  close yet to loving a woman as men and women are capable of loving. The only way a man could begin to more fully love a woman is for him to have had the internal experience of 'God being woman' just as strongly as he has experienced God being male. Until that reality becomes more conscious a man cannot possibly bring  the spiritual and psychological levels of agape and certainly not phileo  and Eros to their fullness in  relating to a woman. This is most astounding  but also very encouraging. It surely would threaten and anger many men to hear this now but it brings with it the possibility of a man experiencing loving a woman in an ecstasy and  innocent intimacy that has only been a painful dream for him up to now.  He can theologically return to the Garden and be with Eve, not in dreaming innocence but with a full knowledge of good and evil(transcended as reflected in the image of the couple holding the serpent)!!   I do believe this. The historical facts I think are bearing it out. This archetype of   When God Was A Woman  has lived eternally in all our Collective Unconscious.  I wish the book by that title would receive an ever larger reading by men and women.  And it is a corollary of all this that  also women, who have not had some experience of God really being feminine, cannot fully appreciate themselves and love others, including men and children, to near their human potential. So if women and men could have a clear outer, logical fact based, and inner archetypal  experience of  God As Woman, it  would propel a level of love in a culture to a new evolutionary level. The New Testament  appeal for humans to 'love one another' would be realized to a level that has likely not happened since  Jesus, or one of his elevated consciousness,  personally loved a woman, perhaps even Mary Magdalene. To me, and I trust many others,  God is just as much woman as man.  To a significant level I've been blessed with that experience, both outwardly and inwardly. I do not know why this has been my experience but it has. I don't know if I am to be blessed or somehow burdened by it. Up to now it seems to have been both. I know I highly value it either way for I believe it is a truth sorely needed in a spiritually drifting world.  Blessings,  Jim

P.S. Some years ago I read  The Sacred Prostitute by Nancy Qualls  Corbett which I literally stumbled across. She is the wife of the late Gene Qualls.(Gene was my Birmingham Jungian therapist during the summer of '85. I  was able to get back to him three days after the 'vision' experience described above began. That was also the last time I got to meet with him. It was as if he had helped me give birth to this 'new world of oneness.' Within two weeks I was teaching Jr. High math and back at home with my family.  I'm sure my life would have shattered if I had not been able to get back to my family environment but my 'vision' experiences, though less intense, had only just begun. Being home and interacting with family kept my feet on the ground and was a continual essential reminder of the mortal person I was.)  I'm confident Nancy Qualls Corbett  must have referred to this work When God Was A Woman?  I have a hard time fathoming  how a woman steeped in the culture of  North Alabama, the same as me, could have written such an astounding chronicle on this subject. She must have had a profound  experience of God as Woman?  I wonder which was first drawn to  leaving Dr. Gene Quall's medical practice and becoming Jungian therapists, she or her husband?   I was not drawn to Jungian thought out of conscious  intellectual curiosity but out of emotional and spiritual survival as a human being. These things are not matters of interesting curiosity to me. They have been and are matters of living and dying at many levels.  Blessings, Jim Hibbett




Tuesday, October 25, 2011

WOMEN AND THE BIBLE.. October 22, 2006..note to Edward Fudge..edited May 15, 2012

I am unable to find Edward Fudge's (edward@edwardfudge.com) original article to which I was responding.But I think the reader will capture the gist of Edward's essay.

Hi Edward. I appreciate how you have shown that we are not, even by Paul's statements, to any longer live in hierarchical relationships but in mutual ones. And I can appreciate Paul and you recognizing that there are some cultural social norms and human needs that bring a 'difference' to some of the roles we are in as men and women. Certainly a parent would be irresponsible to live in all ways 'mutually' to his/her children, even though there should be a keen spiritual awareness that our children are not ours, are each their and God's very own person with a path that we as parents are not to interfere with. I can grant to  some extent being 'husband' and 'wife' may have some similar kind of cultural role appropriateness that is seen by both as healthy and respectful to each. I see your answer to him covering these realities and I thank you for not going where you know he wants you to go and where he determines to stay.

That all being said, it is a misrepresentation to indicate that scripture is not understandably   filled with sexist views and admonitions that relegate women to a second class status and to being regarded as property of men. This is the obvious history of  the Biblical Hebrew religious tradition , of Western Civilization and the church for more than 2000 years. Just a few passing examples: Genesis 3:16 “And thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.”  1 Timothy 2:12 says a woman must not teach, remain silent and must be subjugated to her man.  1 Corinthians 14:34 & 1 Peter 3:6 both say that women have limited rights and are under control of their men. Some of Paul's, and most certainly some of the letters attributed to him traditionally, have long been the foundation to support sexism in the church and Western culture. 

There are exceptions but these stand in contrast to the Biblical norm. Judges 4:4, 14-15, 5:7, Acts 2:18 & 21:9 all tell of powerful women who were not subjugated by men and  escaped  being  punished or discredited  for their authority of men. Also the Song Of Solomon at the very center of the Bible is a sound and beautiful description of  fully mutual male/female lovers. But such positive  texts have been generally abandoned, even  by the church, for building up strong cultural images of  the equality and mutuality of the sexes. 
Much Biblical Law/Story Makes Woman Inferior To Man.
 Eventually, to be honest to this kind of inquirer, these archaic and culture bound statements and admonitions have to be directly faced  and not interpreted as having meant something different by their writers and those who first read them. The OT is nearly totally and brutally sexist in its descriptions of women and there is much of it in the new testament as well. I think the gospels point to a Jesus who, far beyond his time and culture, was not sexist. But his impact in this area was quickly lost as can be seen in so many of the epistles of the New Testament. To me it seems most reasonable that the actual life, words and attitudes of Jesus of Nazareth regarding sexual equality and mutuality  did not hold up in the very early church. Only the past 75 years have great strides been made in the West in the  equality and mutuality of the sexes. 

We just have to face that reality, understand it and  not excuse Biblical sexism as being less than it actually is.  And confess that  Biblical sexism  has been the primary support of  sexism and the disenfranchising  of women in Western and American cultures. Christianity loses credibility, and it has greatly in our day, when it fails to take this honest view of our heritage. To force that these texts be correct in every issue is to ask too much of these sincere ancient writers. 

The new testament does show in numerous ways in the Gospels and in Paul that the ultimate spiritual design is for total equality and  mutuality among all persons including male and female and between wife and husband. Also, the Song Of Solomon at the very center of the Bible is a sound and beautiful description of  fully equal and mutual  lovers. But to imply to any inquirer that all or most Biblical statements regarding gender mutuality  are true to the ethical standards and justice of Jesus is to not deal honestly with these ancient texts.  It also greatly diminishes the high standard that Jesus set for  human value and dignity. That is why, in my view, it is essential if Christian teaching is to acquire and maintain integrity, the Biblical texts have to be taken and interpreted in accordance with their actual nature- creative sincere human attempts to relate a developing religious community's  experience that is beyond being fully captured by human words of any culture or time. We must give up the convenient fantasy of our Biblical texts as being  'inspired'  in the sense of being all consistent with each other, and speaking directly to all future world views and situations, and as being the result of a more or less special dictation from God. This is a great disservice to the image of the ultimate God.
 
This inquirer no doubt is not at all ready to face and benefit from these things. He is still seeking to use scripture to support his sexist views. I am not comfortable about the enduring quality and success of marriage where these non-mutual views of male/female are embraced and acted out. The recently renewed national debate, much of it among men, regarding woman not having the right to control  her own body' reproduction processes indicates just how easily the hard fought battles for  women's equality can be ignored and time turned back against her. So sexist   views, in varying measure,  are still very  alive in American Christianity and secular culture. Human sexuality is unable to be the blessing it is intended to be until the sexes are fully mutual and equal. And I am convinced  the average educated and aware person, who has not been indoctrinated in unfounded assumptions about the Bible, in our culture will not seriously  listen to the Bible until such claims and untruths are acknowledged and explained by those who teach the Bible. By insisting on an inerrant kind of inspiration we reduce the likelihood that general people of our day will see a conscientious way to the truly timeless element and application of the love story of Jesus Christ. This is what I see as a Crisis of Christianity which both conservative and progressive need to bring into clear focus to itself in order for the Christ story to survive and be a source of human transformation  for future generations.
Cordially, Jim H.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

LOVE WILL HAVE ITS WAY, EVENTUALLY ....July 6, 2010

INTRODUCTION: This is a very personal essay. It is risky for it can be easily misunderstood or erroneously interpreted. I would hope the reader would take this as a sincere  effort to relay my belief and hope in these important matters of love coming from personal experience, especially inner experiences, and my best effort to apply  intellectual capacities to them. A key matter in this essay is my belief that human life and the whole world is on a path to eventually bring into reality a 'fullness of love' . This points to a time when every human adult will become more fully conscious of  how experiencing love with another person in ways that transform life to its Soul potential and the quality of potent love will be brought more fully into the world. I see our individual lives, no matter our present situation, as part of our preparations for such eventual love. Our lives are like cauldrons where 'love making' is the primary spiritual/psychological process that is occurring. So if a person is not experiencing such an outer intimate love for years , for decades or even for a life time that does not imply that one is not on the exact right track. Preparing to give and receive such love requires many experiences and a depth of inner understanding of oneself. Every relationship we have and every interaction, including those that otherwise seem painful, failures or without meaning, are important experiences of preparations to love. 

So no one reading what I say here should feel  their life is not just as directly moving toward such love as anyone else. In fact, no doubt in many cases one who 'seems' to have arrived at a highly developed love in their outer life may actually be far less advanced on the path to fully developed love than one who 'appears' to have no 'love forming' activity in their life at all. No one can make such judgments about others. The most important thing for any of us is to be as aware, conscious and desirous of such love for ourselves and others world-wide as we are able. These attitudes and commitments are our greatest assurance that we are for sure walking our unique paths toward the love for which we and the whole world are destined.

Answer to Job, Jung's final academic work was the most difficult for him to write. He describes his resistance to state the conclusions he had reached regarding the relationship of human and God. This is where he establishes clearly the idea that the ultimate problem in the world and the cause behind human suffering is not humans alone but also the internal moral contradiction within God itself. I've expressed his ideas in my own words in other places.(See blog post 'Cooperative Suffering Of God and Human' http://jhibbett.blogspot.com/2011/08/cooperative-suffering-of-god-and-human.html) John P. Dourley is the best author I've found for explaining these concepts. The implication is that humans with their capacity for consciousness were created not from an only loving God with no stirring needs and self interests Himself. But God experienced a necessity for human consciousness as a tool to become more fully conscious and thus a more compassionate Godself. 
Depiction Of Creation Of Adam
In this way it is only in human consciousness and the suffering such a process generates that the internal contradiction of God can be first apprehended, then redeemed by the human embracing its warring opposites. This means that the Trinity Godhead is not one where warring opposites and the deep pits of anger and unrelated unregulated power have come under control and in harmony with the reasoned, light and relational aspects of being . It was promoted and needed by God that this harmonizing and thus redeeming and healing of God and human be eventually accomplished in the mutual suffering of God and, at times, 'slightly more conscious' humans. Jung sees the book of Job as presenting this situation clearly where the far less powerful but more moral Job stands in the intimidating raw power of an 'out of control' non empathic narcissistic God. All that Job can do in the end of the play is 'put his hand over his mouth' when he perceives the seeming impossible demand that has come to his doorstep.... that somehow his own small  ego consciousness  must become the teacher and moral superior needed for this God to become conscious of its own internal contradiction.( Most scholars agree that the happy ending of Job was later added to lessen the barbs regarding God's character the original author intended.)

I'm writing this little essay thinking I may have an insight that Jung did not get to(that I am aware of) but that can be consistent with what he developed regarding the cooperative and complementary relationship between the Creator and the created, the Sacred and the Human. Jung had a dream where he and his protestant pastor father were asked to kneel before Uriah. Jung said his father without hesitation knelt till his head touched the floor. Jung knelt but stopped just a fraction of an inch before his head touched the ground.
Jung Stopped Short Of His Head Being On The Ground
This implied that somehow Jung maintained his human autonomy before the religious figure, indicating that he had some question as to whether the figure deserved his complete adoration and submission. Jung found a comparison in himself kneeling before the orthodox Christian tradition, Uriah before the betraying King David, and Job before an immoral Yahweh. He saw in each case that the less powerful one had an ever so slight edge of 'moral superiority' over the one that 'should' have been , and by all tradition was, superior to the weaker. King David was even later referred to as a man  'after God's own heart.' Jung's  point is it would take much courage to not 'give in' fully to such a religious spiritual  power just as Job refused to confess his questions regarding Yahweh's character and justice. He saw his dad , in the dream, not even recognizing any moral problem and himself as barely keeping his personal integrity.(How I interpret Uriah below will give another reason to justify Jung's reluctance to bow down, one that he may not have been aware of.)

Uriah is portrayed in scripture story as the righteous soldier who refused the pleasures of bedding with his beautiful wife while his comrades were in harm's way, and where Uriah supposed he rightfully belonged. This was a setup by David to trap Uriah into thinking he was the father of his wife's developing illegitimate son. David knew he himself was the father. When this treachery by David did not work David sent Uriah into battle where he was sure to be killed and was. So the unlikely situation of 'superior morality' over the representation of God in King David is clearly felt. How does Uriah, even in his 'superior morality' say 'No' to the King of Israel? This also shows the total unbridled uncaring use of power of David over Uriah. This is power for power's sake. This is the 'use of power because one can', of using 'power without justice.' Such ravaging non relational power is the very problem that is at the heart of the Godhead and Job ends up squaring off with it. Like Uriah Job is pictured as carrying this load of ' moral superiority' in the presence of and in opposition to the outrageous power and unconsciousness of Yahweh( or of David in Uriah's situation.) Finally Jung felt he personally experienced this same kind of position with respect to arguably the most powerful religious system that has ever emerged in human history, Christianity. Unlike his father who was able 
Jung And Rev. Victor White During Their Conversations On The Faith
in 'unthinking unconscious faith' ,in Jung's view, to completely bow before the contradictions of Christian dogma, Jung was burdened with bringing essential questions to it that it could not legitimately answer. So in Answer To Job, after a life long internal wrestling with the major Christian symbols he comes forth with a view of the Godhead that appreciatively and humbly undermines, or at least reinterprets, it at its very heart.

In his appreciative undermining of substantial Christian dogma Jung appeals strongly and centrally to the symbol of the suffering and resurrecting Christ. The cross is the crux of the more 'enlightened' theology that Jung is recommending.(Jung would never admit he was practicing theology but few would now agree him.) For these images can be, instead of a one-time suffering of one god/human for the sin of all humans, a symbol of the conscious suffering of every human in the interest of furthering the healing of the incompleteness and imperfection that is contained in the Godhead. Jung insisted that it be kept in mind that this whole scenario of humans suffering willingly for/with God was at the beckoning of God who saw this as the only way out of the Sacred dilemma. And that it remains true that God also suffers cooperatively in this historical process. In other words the human and the Sacred are found to be mutually dependent and mutually needed in one another's evolutionary path to a higher consciousness, expanded empathy for all that is and a richer capacity for loving and being loved.

The additional insight that I may bring to these formulations above is the possibility that the ultimate Sacred and even the emerged Godhead as imaged in the Trinity has been pushing for something all along. There is something that humans are capable of experiencing that the Sacred is bound and determined, if not fully conscious of it Herself, for humans to discover within themselves and to experience in mortal history. Without this being discovered and it becoming a natural 'way of life' for humans, Human and Sacred are destined to the kinds of individual and community sufferings that have marked creation from its beginning. It may be that the 'weaker ones' above with their superior 'moral position', and for all the reasons they may be respected and honored, have still not yet found and experienced the thing that the ultimate God has pushed for since the beginning. So though Uriah, Job and Jung are 'right' in their smidgen of 'superior morality' they do not take the prize home from the authority they challenge. Somehow that very suspected authority, such as Yahweh over Job, or King David over Uriah, or Christianity and Uriah over Jung is rightfully insisting that something is also yet undone in the challenger. (This all demonstrates the mutuality of the growth in consciousness of any engaged powers, whether Human or Sacred. No one is perfectly and wholly right.)

What would this be that would keep God affirmed in His outrageous and unconscious power over the human who is able at times to surpass God in genuine morality? I am suggesting as I have written some years ago with respect to Uriah, there is every good reason to see that Uriah had not discovered and lived out a love for his wife of the type that humans, with what God has placed in them, are capable. The best explanation of such love that I have formulated is that it is a fully embodied love with the characteristics embedded in the Greek words Agape, Phileo and Eros. Uriah, in his great expression of 'brotherly honor' and fairness, had denigrated the meaning of love of his wife. A man who has opportunity to lie with his wife by the highest authority and does not cannot possibly value that love as an ultimate expression and gift of the Sacred in one's human life. 
David Treacherously Offers Uriah A Night With His Wife
A more spiritually developed Uriah would have reasoned that any time any couple fully loves the whole world is better off. He would have believed that out of his loving her he was most likely to find the answer to any problems he faced elsewhere. But instead he valued soldier comradary and so called 'honor among soldiers' above love for his woman. It can be imagined that David is justified in his treachery by making it clear that the real problem issue in Uriah's life is 'failure to significantly love', as it is in every human life and indeed even in the life of God. All parties need improvement and development in the quality of love. This is the primary dynamic of spiritual evolution in the universe. David's treachery makes clear, to those open to see it, the great 'unconscious sin' in humanity-- the failure to expect and to enter into when possible the mutual sharing and ecstasy of such love with one's beloved. (It is significant that the shadowed  technical, legal and religious adultery of  David and Bathsheba becomes, in the biblical narrative, a relationship eventually demonstrating a far more mature/spiritual  love than either of them  had experienced before. This is seen in David's unassuaged grief at the loss of the adulterous  couple's  love child and later the birth and rearing of the next King of Israel, Solomon. This demonstrates the consequences and complications, so common in sacred and secular story, of love and systems of conventional legality and morality.) I believe the Sacred continues to drive humans in ways beyond all expectations and predictions to discover and practice such full love, for without it God cannot be fully conscious of it either. And such an ongoing elevated consciousness of love appears to be the central purpose of creating humans from the start.

This same 'missing of the mark' of love is clearly seen in the history of Yahweh. He is represented time and again as the husband and lover of Israel. But perennially He falls into a patriarchal attitude toward his woman that is everything contrary to a balanced and mutual relationship steeped in Agape, Phileo and Eros. Over and over Yahweh refers to the 'woman, Israel,' as a whore, an adulteress and as his exclusive property.(The same value that the nation, following Yahweh's example, came to place on women and their being owned by their father or husband.) Yahweh is ragingly jealous, demanding and consistently using his unbridled power to control the relationship rather than to empower her so that mutuality is always the goal. Yes Yahweh, from his claimed moral superiority, is shown as repeatedly forgiving her for her unfaithfulness when she repents. This is the precise cycle that is seen in our culture in possessive, controlling and abusive husbands. The most exciting, and unhealthy, times for such a man in the cycle is when he experiences the return of his so called 'whoring' wife or when she forgives him (again) for his brutality. 
Under Yahweh Adulterous Women Deserved Death
In these stories and in Yahweh's story responsibility is never taken for the possessiveness, raging  jealously, and controlling attitude and behavior that inevitably drive an honest woman away from the relationship. Israel later unfortunately  took on this definition of herself and used it to interpret why God had not intervened for her. The later O.T. prophets interpret the destruction of the Temple, Jerusalem , the scattering of the people and the other sufferings of war as being 'caused by' their ' forebears being an adulterous and whoring people.' It is terribly hard and painful for the abused to own the horror of the abuser. It is much safer to blame oneself.(Reader keep in mind, my understanding is that the Yahweh image of God was that of the people at that time and place. No image of God that a human community describes can ever be a full and complete picture of the Ultimate God, the God Self that is evolving morally similarly to how humans are spiritually evolving. This development of both Sacred and Human is often in fits and starts but apparently with a final goal embedded in the ultimate Sacred and origin of all that is.)

A parallel situation to Uriah's 'moral superiority' is Job before Yahweh. Throughout the story Job is behaving 'more morally' than Yahweh and thus experiencing a very real, though terribly uncomfortable, spiritual/psychological superiority to this outrageously and undependable   powerful God. But had Job yet discovered the kind of love I am referring to with his wife or any person? The text only mentions Job having one wife but it is hard to harmonize fully developed mutual love with her telling him after his trials and losses that he should, 'Curse God and die' or lose his integrity.  It is probably unlikely that a man of Job's  wealth in his culture would  have had only one wife. Yet  the author does have Job make the statement that seems to say he did not have a roving eye to 'think upon a maid.'(Job 31:1) The text does not allow us to know just how  near Job had approached the kind or moral development of love that this essay seeks to describe. These problems may be a wink from the writer  that neither Job or his wife  had yet arrived  very near the 'love' that the Sacred is determined that all humans eventually come to.
Had Righteous Job Arrived At Mature  Love?

So as immoral and absurd as Yahweh's overpowering of  the mortal Job is, it paradoxically may push the more moral Job to discover that  his morality is not complete until  he would experience a much fuller love with a mortal beloved one. Were Job a polygamist, as was the custom in such cultures,  I may be risking making a negative  judgment on the quality of love in polygamous relationships. I must confess that I do not really know if such love can possibly be experienced for more than one person at a time. I only have my inner experience and intuition, not to mention the T.V. series about polygamous life, to make me  strongly question it.

The analogies above might be carried to Jung's own time and situation. As he experienced the burden of standing appreciatively against the perceived moral giant of the West, Christian Dogma; did he also stand as a human who had yet to find the highest value of love in his intimate relationships? Of course I cannot answer that but I would think that few if any men in that time or culture had yet experienced such a love. I'm suggesting throughout this that the drive to such intimate love has been the eternal, even if not fully conscious, goal and movement of God and human from the beginning. This is the ultimate goal of human life first urged in the very heart of the ultimate God. Only in the past hundred years has such love even been a possibility as a cultural norm for Western society. For society has lived under an unrelenting patriarchy for at least 3000 years. Such a sexist underpinning of cultural norms rules out the possibility of a mutual heterosexual love between two persons except in the rarest of cases. With the consciousness raising of the woman's movement and with its necessary over reactions, it is now more possible spiritually/psychologically for there to be a growing number of couples who can experience the life-changing spiritual experience of on-going mutual monogamous Agape, phileo and Eros existing together as a more fully developed love than has been the norm of humanity to this point.

Finally, who am I in what can sound like  a 'morally superior' position to say that even the heroes of our religious traditions had not yet likely experienced the kind of love that present day man and woman are capable of? (This naturally raises the question of whether Jesus of Nazareth ever experienced such love? My perspective would give every reason to trust that he either did as internal spiritual  experience or in relationship to a mortal human woman. I think either  would be consistent with the highest meaning of his being an incarnation of the Sacred. One documented account of a person having such an inner mystical erotic connection  was Mechthild of Magdeburg. She was a 13th century Beguine church woman who describes such an encounter with the Christ figure. Such experiences undoubtedly  have helped support the Catholic  tradition of a nun being married to Christ.)


Like Job, Uriah and Jung;  I and every person is driven by these same dynamics to question ourselves  about the place and quality of love in our own personal life. Surely that question would lead to the ultimate humility which all religious strains say is an essential spiritual virtue for every human. And unquestionably, if one feels s/he has experienced such love they recognize it as a gift of Sacred grace and not of their own creation.  Can any of us claim a perfection of love which alone could establish a genuine and sustained 'superior morality'?

I have spoken of this very personal area before. (Blog post 'Love's Trouble' http://jhibbett.blogspot.com/2011/08/dream-loves-troubleseptember-4.html) In the midst of my 'vision experiences' that began in mid August '85 I somehow entered into a spiritual/psychological state where I experienced internally what I trust it would exactly 'be like' to be engaged in such love with a woman over an adult lifetime. I think not only is it now 'like' I have had such an experience but that I also have some of the carry over effects of such love in my life. This is the dynamic that underlies my empathic view to both sides of all the opposites/polarities that confront human consciousness today. These polarities  include the world's  clashing religious/political views, good vs evil,  Agape vs Eros and Sexuality vs Spirituality.
Jung  Struggled With Christian Orthodoxy
Jung learned much from the experiences of two historic Christian mystics- Meister Eckhart and Jacob Boehme. Both of them record experiences of entering into union with the Sacred from before there was any creation and before things had separated into the energizing archetypes within the Trinity Godhead. These archetypes are determined to enter and effect human consciousness. Unfortunately they are the source of the negative attitudes and behaviors of humanity as well as the positive. In these mystics' entering into this deepest level of the Sacred origins, which has most commonly been described as the The Great Mother or The Ultimate God, they came back from it with a far 'broader' and empathic perception of reality. The experience led them to a more expanded acceptance of the forces and factors that comprise all of inner and outer reality, than they would have before been capable. (My blog post 'Individuality Can Embrace The World' describes this. http://jhibbett.blogspot.com/2011/07/individuality-can-embrace-world.html)

I can only surmise that I have been somewhat similarly affected by ' mystical-type' experiences. I come from it totally confident that the time is coming when  humans can expect to have  a natural, devoted and Erotic experience with a real human partner and that it will change the spiritual/psychological terrain of human/Sacred life. This will usher in a huge leap in spiritual evolution, I think just in time to save us from destroying each other or our present home, planet earth.

Another permanent effect of this internal experience of 'loving and being loved' is that I carry deeply and continually a 'missing of' the experience of that love. I yearn  to return to such love, preferably in this mortal life. I'm confident that such longing and yearning is at the bottom of the most positive threads of sacred text described as the 'eternal love of God.' This yearning may be somewhat similar to what many who experience 'near death' report. I hear some of them saying that they still have an insatiable yearning for the 'promised bliss' they have tasted in the attracting light.  I am seeking to describe the quality and origin of a 'yearning for mature love' that perhaps most humans have, even if  only at the edges of consciousness.