Tuesday, May 1, 2018

A Great Spiritual Teacher, For the Spiritual But Not Religious?

“I’m spiritual, but not religious.”  You’ve probably heard that before.  Maybe you’ve even said it yourself.  If that’s true of you, then it’s undeniable that sooner or later, you’re going to have to deal with Jesus.  He is, after all, one of the most “spiritual” people who ever lived.  He was, by most people’s standards, a good man.  In fact, many “spiritual” people want to “just get back to the teachings of Jesus.”  That’s probably what most of us mean by saying “I’m spiritual, but not religious.”  “I don’t want to get caught up in all that religious mumbo-jumbo, all the rituals and doctrines--Church attendance, sacraments, pot-lucks, “stand-up, sit down,” sing a song, say a prayer, wash, rinse, repeat—"Just tell me what Jesus said, and if we all took his teachings to heart, the world would be a much better place.”  Of course, we would also want to look at the teachings of Mohammed and the Dali Lama, and spiritual teachers who have come and gone.  But for some reason, most “spiritual” people keep coming back around to Jesus.  After all, he did teach many good things.  But if you were asked, “what was the main thing that Jesus taught,” what would you say?  What was at the very center of everything Jesus said and did?  Maybe you would cite the golden rule, “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”  Or maybe you would guess that Jesus’ teaching was mainly about love.  Or perhaps it was about God.  Would it surprise you to know that, although Jesus spoke about all those things, none of them were at the center of what he came to teach?  “So why does that matter” you may ask?  “Why is what Jesus taught that important, to me or anyone else?”  Well, if you want to be “spiritual” then knowing what one of the greatest spiritual teachers taught would be important.  And what if the heart of what he taught indicated that he EXPECTED something of us, of you?  Wouldn’t you want to know what that was?  While there are lots of answers to why it’s important, the most significant one is this:  ALL of life’s biggest questions; why am I here, what is the meaning of life, how can I be truly happy, they all hinge upon getting the answer to that first question right— “what was the main thing that Jesus came to teach?”  The answer will shock you.

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