These books can't possibly compete with centuries of established history, especially when that history is endorsed by the ultimate bestseller of all time. Faukman's eyes went wide. Don't tell me Harry Potter is actually about the Holy Grail.I was referring to the Bible.Faukman cringed. I knew that.
We are creators, and yet we naively play the role of the created. We see ourselves as helpless sheep buffeted around by the God who made us. We kneel like frightened children, begging for help, for forgiveness, for good luck. But once we realize that we are truly created in the Creator's image, we will start to understand that we, too, must be Creators. When we understand this fact, the doors will burst wide open for human potential.
Truth has power. And if we all gravitate toward similar ideas, maybe we do so because those ideas are true...written deep within us. And when we hear the truth, even if we don't understand it, we feel that truth resonate within us...vibrating with our unconscious wisdom. Perhaps the truth is not learned by us, but rather, the truth is re-called...re-membered...-re-cognized...as that which is already inside us.
Whether or not you believe in God, you must believe this: when we as a species abandon our trust in a power greater than us, we abandon our sense of accountability. Faiths… all faiths… are admonitions that there is something we cannot understand, something to which we are accountable. With faith we are accountable to each other, to ourselves, and to a higher truth. Religion is flawed, but only because man is flawed. The church consists of a brotherhood of imperfect, simple souls wanting only to be a voice of compassion in a world spinning out of control.
Every faith in the world is based on fabrication. That is the definition of faith―acceptance of that which we imagine to be true, that which we cannot prove. Every religion describes God through metaphor, allegory, and exaggeration, from the early Egyptians through modern Sunday school. Metaphors are a way to help our minds process the unprocessible. The problems arise when we begin to believe literally in our own metaphors.Should we wave a flag and tell the Buddhists that we have proof the Buddha did not come from a lotus blossom? Or that Jesus was not born of a literal virgin birth? Those who truly understand their faiths understand the stories are metaphorical.
Omnipotent-benevolent simply means that God is all-powerful and well-meaning.''I understand the concept. It's just . . . there seems to be a contradiction.''Yes. The contradiction is pain. Man's starvation, war, sickness . . .''Exactly!' Chartrand knew the camerlengo would understand. 'Terrible things happen in this world. Human tragedy seems like proof that God could not possibly be both all-powerful and well-meaning. If He loves us and has the power to change our situation, He would prevent our pain, wouldn't He?'The camerlengo frowned. 'Would He?'Chartrand felt uneasy. Had he overstepped his bounds? Was this one of those religious questions you just didn't ask? 'Well . . . if God loves us, and He can protect us, He would have to. It seems He is either omnipotent and uncaring, or benevolent and powerless to help.''Do you have children, Lieutenant?'Chartrand flushed. 'No, signore.''Imagine you had an eight-year-old son . . . would you love him?''Of course.''Would you let him skateboard?'Chartrand did a double take. The camerlengo always seemed oddly in touch for a clergyman. 'Yeah, I guess,' Chartrand said. 'Sure, I'd let him skateboard, but I'd tell him to be careful.''So as this child's father, you would give him some basic, good advice and then let him go off and make his own mistakes?''I wouldn't run behind him and mollycoddle him if that's what you mean.''But what if he fell and skinned his knee?''He would learn to be more careful.'The camerlengo smiled. 'So although you have the power to interfere and prevent your child's pain, you would choose to show your love by letting him learn his own lessons?''Of course. Pain is part of growing up. It's how we learn.'The camerlengo nodded. 'Exactly.
I am not questioning God's power! It is God who gave us reason and circumspection! It is God we serve by exercising prudence!
There comes a moment in history when ignorance is no longer a forgivable offense... a moment when only wisdom has the power to absolve. - Bertrand Zobrist
When his brain died, all of the memoriesheld in his gray matter, along with all of the knowledge he had acquired, would simply evaporatein a flood of chemical reactions.
The man now retrieved a linen cloth and stuffed it deep into Katherine’s mouth. “Death,” hewhispered to her, “should be a quiet thing.
It has always been this way. Death is followed by birth. To reach paradise, man must pass through inferno. - Bertrand Zobrist
Faith is universal. Our specific methods for understanding it are arbitrary. Some of us pray to Jesus, some of us go to Mecca, some of us study subatomic particles. In the end we are all just searching for truth, that which is greater than ourselves.
Science tells me God must exist.My mind tells me I'll never understand God.My heart tells me I'm not meant to. [Vittoria Vetra]
Mr. Langdon, I did not ask if you believe what man says about God. I asked if you believed in God. There is a difference. Holy scripture is stories...legends and history of man's quest to understand his own need for meaning. I am not asking you to pass judgment on literature. I am asking if you believe in God. When you lie out under the stars, do you sense the divine? Do you feel in your gut that you are staring up at the work of God's hands?
Since the beginning of time, spirituality and religion have been called to fill in the gaps that science did not understand.
For centuries the church has stood by while science picked away at religion bit by bit. Debunking miracles. Training the mind to overcome the heart. Condemning religion as the opiate of the masses. They denounce God as a hallucination - a delusional crutch for those too weak to accept that life is meaningless. I could not stand by while science presumed to harness the power of God himself! Proof, you say? Yes, proof of science's ignorance! What is wrong with the admission that something exists beyond our understanding? The day science substantiates God in a lab is the day people stop needing faith!
Buddha had said:Each of us is a God. Each of us knows all. We need only open our minds to hear our own wisdom.
Professor Langdon,' called a young man with curly hair in the back row, 'if Masonry is not a secret society, not a corporation, and not a religion, then what is it?''Well, if you were to ask a Mason, he would offer the following definition: Masonry is a system of morality, veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols.''Sounds to me like a euphemism for freaky cult. ''Freaky, you say?''Hell yes!' the kid said, standing up. 'I heard what they do inside those secret buildings! Weird candlelight rituals with coffins, and nooses, and drinking wine out of skulls. Now that's freaky!'Langdon scanned the class. 'Does that sound freaky to anyone else?''Yes!' they all chimed in.Langdon feigned a sad sigh. 'Too bad. If that's too freaky for you, then I know you'll never want to join my cult.'Silence settled over the room. The student from the Women's Center looked uneasy. 'You're in a cult?'Langdon nodded and lowered his voice to a conspiratorial whisper. 'Don't tell anyone, but on the pagan day of the sun god Ra, I kneel at the foot of an ancient instrument of torture and consume ritualistic symbols of blood and flesh.'The class looked horrified.Langdon shrugged. 'And if any of you care to join me, come to the Harvard chapel on Sunday, kneel beneath the crucifix, and take Holy Communion.'The classroom remained silent.Langdon winked. 'Open your minds, my friends. We all fear what we do not understand.
Religion is like language or dress. We gravitate toward the practices with which we were raised. In the end, though, we are all proclaiming the same thing. That life has meaning. That we are grateful for the power that created us.
Don't tell anyone, but on the pagan day of the sun god Ra, I kneel at the foot of an ancient instrument of torture and consume ritualistic symbols of blood and flesh. ...And if any of you care to join me, come to the Harvard chapel on Sunday, kneel beneath the crucifix, and take Holy Communion.
Knowledge grows exponentially. The more we know, the greater our ability to learn, and the faster we expand our knowledge base.
…Our sunsets have been reduced to wavelengths and frequencies. The complexities of the universe have been shredded into mathematical equations. Even our self-worth as human beings has been destroyed.