Reading Suggestions

(john davis) #41

I have already done this exercise, Frederich, and imagine a dose of aesthetics could be more interesting than watching the posturing of a handful of academic, professional materialists vs the rest of humanity. This has been going on for several decades and even with a knock out punch by Nagels they seem to want to stagger, like a drunk on steroids, and do the same damn debate, all over again. I think we already know what the new atheists are up to, and they get a lot of free press. The Deluezians ,as much as I admire them, are a tad bit delusional so I suggest that the antidote to all this weary, postmodern disenchantment, could be reflecting as a group upon a good movie.

I think you already know that, Marco, and we already have rather limited attention spans. I wonder if there is another way of doing discourse without the debate style dominating everyone? Can we sing this tune in a different key?

Mine, oh thou Lord of Life, send my roots rain!

(john davis) #42

What about Graham Harmon’s book on Dante? He is a hip philosopher, hyper aware of the new materialists and promoting a speculative realism. He is doing lit theory with Purgatorio. It is short and non technical book with clear explanations of what phenomenology is up to . I know the burning hell of the Inferno but have never read the Purgatorio, probably because that is where I have spent most of my adult life.

Dante with a Hammer: The Ethics, Aesthetics, and Metaphysics of Love by Graham Harmon.

I think we should do something wierd on the New Occult movements that arising with Trump. There are lots of Gnostic Voices that are trying to be heard. Some of it is lunatic but some of it is probably pretty good. Gary Lachman is a good guide for this kind of tour.

(Marco V Morelli) #43

I think there is room for a revival of materialism in a different key. This is mixing domains, I know, since materialism in metaphysics is different than materialism in ethics or economics—but they are not unrelated.

I keep getting reminded that at root, the words “material” and “matter” are related to “mother.” I believe this is why there are esoteric potentials within materialism, despite the materialists.

Here is a chapter from Charles Eisenstein’s Sacred Economics:

I share this just to give context to what I was (admittedly, vaguely) getting at, but I think the question, “What is matter?” (which I think is related to “What matters?”) is worth meditating on. Maybe matter is not what materialism has been telling us it is?

(john davis) #44

Perhaps most materialists are asking the wrong question? Rather than asserting without much evidence that consciousness arises from matter,and that you are mere ephiphenomena, they asked what is matter that consciousness can arise from it? This is, I imagine, how Sri Aurobindo works with this aspect of our human dilemma. The materialists who are working this way, however, start to look a little quesy, for there is no clear way to put forward a promissory note that with world enough and time science will prove they are right. This is a basic faith based claim they criticize the fundamentalist religionists with. It could be interesting if they would stop trying to redo the Scopes trial. Matter is a hard to figure out. It makes little sense as we start zooming into string theory. It makes no sense to reduce something as complex as mind to something as inexplicable as matter. With dark matter making up 95% of the universe the materialist have a lot of explaining to do. Whatever we study please lets avoid more crash courses in physics. I think it is a dead end.

How about a Post religious study of Jesus? I just started a new book. It is dense but it is short and to the point.

Future Christ: A Lesson in Heresy by Francoise Laurelle

(Katina Press) #45

Nowwww, you’re tawlkin’, Bros!

I could definitely benefit from some intellectual hygiene. And a study in materialism or “physicality” would be great! I have been held up by the ankles and doused head first into the world of anti-materialism in both my spiritual and intellectual life (since youth). Consequently, materialism is my Achilles’ Heel and I need to develop a more balanced appreciation of this metaphysical underdog.

Before I embrace this new post-materialist era of scientific inquiry, I need to broaden my understanding of what materialism entails. In addition, I need more understanding and insight into my role and responsibility as a subjective being and how to utilize this role to complement the objectivity of my experience, rather than to undermine it.

Sometimes, (like recently) I’ll take brief (all too brief) vows of silence and cease to transmit any ideas or thoughts and instead, try to focus my receptive energies in isolative, quiet reflection. During this time, I reflected on some of your posts (esp. Marco’s mini-epic poem) and great films. Then, when I start to perceive that certain phenomena are coalescing from varied sources, I’ll resume communication with the “outside” world with a renewed sense of gratitude. As I am grateful for all of you. :blush:

(Katina Press) #46

Yeah, JohnnyD54, how ‘bout that! I have always been apprehensive about Christian mysticism, yet, Christ was, indeed, the OG East Coast / West Coast Gansgsta’ when it comes to uniting the spirit world with that of the material world. One of Christ’s greatest disappointments was the Shemites’ tragic misinterpretation of the “Kingdom” as something to be compared with the earthly power structures of Caesar. It was only after Christ’s resurrection that His Apostles and only a few of His disciples broached the subject of the spiritual manifestation of the “God Spell” (I.e., John 14:20; I John 3:24).

Paul, in particular, is one of my heroes of the faith whom courageously extended the Gospel beyond that of its material application (Esp. in his letters to the Ephesians, Colossians and Galatians - to name a few).

The Evangelical church of the current age is making the exact same mistake as the Pharisaic Tribes advocating for Christ’s crucifixion ante-1st century anno domini. And I truly believe that, if Christ were to return in our current age, He would suffer the exact same fate from the 21st century Evangelical church.

And I say this as one of His very blessed disciples of the 21st century, yet in no ways a member of the “Evangelical church.”

Can you blame God for concealing 95% of His Glory from human perception? Over 2,000 years ago, we got a glimpse of it (and many other times throughout the planet’s history, as God has sent beacons of Light to expose humankind to the unified relationship shared between the metaphysics of matter and spirit) and our response (no, reaction) is to crucify it out of the history books.

I would love to embark upon a …I was about to write “non-controversial” study, but no, instead, I invite the controversy, as it is a sure sign that Truth is harboring in the midst… a study of the Christ - centered mysticism promoted in the gospel. Yet, I am afraid that many who share this interest, may not have given the gospels, nor the OT a thorough exposition or even a complete reading of the texts nor context of the scriptures which fully reveal the spiritual aspects of Christianity.

(Katina Press) #47

Between the years of 2009 and 2012, I completed / authored a manuscript of Bible Exposition covering the OT and NT. It is a two page summary of the main points, historical contexts, maps, etc. of each and every book of the Bible. It was quite a journey and I cherish this expositional summary, as 90% of the notes I took (as I studied the Word verse by verse, utilizing concordances and reputable, trusted commentaries) were the source of revealed , interpretative truth. Their is no way that an amateur academe, such as myself, could possibly capture the essential exposed truths of each of the 66 books in 1 to 4 pages each. Sometimes, I will reread it with absolute astonishment over the time, energy and intricate study I invested in persistently completing this project. It is in the format of a leather-bound binder with a divider for each book each book catalogued into sections:

The OT books are catalogued into five sections:
(I) The Pentateuch
(II) The History
(III) Poetry and Wisdom
(IV) Major Prophets
(V) Minor Prophets

Then, there is a midsection Epilogue called, “The 400 Silent Years”, which includes a 3.5 page summary of notes on the nation of Israel under the historical power shifts of Medo-Persia (first 200 years before the NT, as history exits the Old Testament) and Ancient Rome (final 200 years before Christ’s birth, as history enters the New Testament). This midsection epilogue concludes 63 years before the birth of Christ, when Rome betrayed the Asmonian Jews by perpetuating their rift with the Syrians, and creating a secret pact with the King of Syria (descendant of Esau?!?), to facilitate Rome’s capture of Jerusalem. (Very rough summary, yet thoroughly explained in less than four pages of hand-written notes).

The NT portion of my summative manuscript is catalogued as follows:

(I) The Gospels
(II) Acts of the Apostles
(III) Paul’s Epistles (12)
(IV) Hebrews
(V) James’ Letter (1)
(VI) Peter’s Letters (2)
(VII) John’s Letters (3)
(VIII) Jude’s Letter (1)
(IX) Revelation of John

I only wish to publish this extensive summative volume of the scriptures to create a more user-friendly, truncated, “Cliff Notes” style of the scriptures and to make them more accessible to critics who have yet, to study the entirety of the Bible for themselves. It links all 66 books together in historical context, with simple, colorful maps to connect the history and action with geography. If one were to forever lose access to an actual Bible, this Binder (in which, I have entitled “The Book of the Lion and the Lamb”) would not only explain the entire contents of the 66 Books, but also make perfect sense out of it. This exhaustive work, (along with individual, color-coded, folders of more detailed notes pertaining to each OT book) follows me wherever I go. I hope to clean it up and publish it (E. g., convert the hand-written, expository notes of each book to a typed format with a more reader-friendly background template, incl. an Appendix for maps, timelines, and a citation section referencing the commentaries, concordances and contributions from the various Bible Expositors I relied upon to guide the interpretative and summative process etc.).

Perhaps, I should start dusting this manuscript off and begin polishing it up for publication as a side project. I just need to find an audience of appreciative readers to review my notes throughout the editing process. My exposure to IC has inspired me to resurrect this manuscript and put it out there for public use.

Any takers?!? Yeah, right…dream on, Katina!

The Book of the Lion and the Lamb - a Biblical exposition manuscript
(Katina Press) #48

Nevertheless, I apologize for the lack of brevity regarding the previous tangent. I was only trying to explain how undergoing the process of this 3 to 4 year bible exposition project ignited my understanding and appreciation of scripture to a degree which makes Christian mysticism a comfortable discourse for me (but not necessarily for others). And the degree of preparation and exposure to the scriptures, it would take to facilitate a fruitful, ongoing discussion.

(Marco V Morelli) #49

“The Book of the Lion and the Lamb” sounds like an amazing works of scholarship, Katina. I hope you don’t despair over finding some early readers for your work. Although she hasn’t participated here in the forum yet, I will mention @joannahoyt as a potential reader or connector. Her fictional piece, “Come Again” in Metapsychosis is exactly about this idea which you share:

On her website, Joanna thanked Metapsychosis for our “willingness to publish something which might be too Christian for the mainstream and too challenging for the Christians, and also for their offering an open forum for discussion.”

@marythaler might also be interested in this theme.

That said, I personally would not be going into a conversation about Christian mysticism (or theology, or ethics…) as a “believer” or self-identifying Christian. I grew up Catholic and have read large parts of both the OT and NT, but I am no biblical scholar. I imagine others who would be interested in this topic wouldn’t necessarily be Jesus die-hards, but still might have a lot to offer (and receive) from such a convo. Would you be up for a mixed dialogue like this?

I’ve been reading Francis Spufford’s Unapologetic: Why, Despite Everything, Christianity Can Still Make Surprising Emotional Sense, which @fmdolan mentioned above, and have the book on loan for another three weeks. I am not enamoured with it—some of his polemic misses the mark for me—but it could be a good edge from which to start a dialogue. I haven’t yet checked out Future Christ, but that sounds interesting too.

Could we pick something to read, and schedule a meeting for a few weeks out, maybe late October after the Gebser conference, and see where things go from there?

Should I take a preference poll? Any other suggestions?

(john davis) #50

Before we take a preference poll, I would like to know where our options are coming from? I am not sure anyone has yet made a strong case for any direction.

(Marco V Morelli) #51


Dear God,
let me learn patience,
as quickly as possible!

(john davis) #52

I am wondering if we can do two short texts in tandem? A strong book that is post-religion spiritual such as Future Christ with a review of a pro-religion spirituality such as Katina’s study? It could be a mess but it would not demand that readers take sides and then advocate for one book.

Aren’t we sort of trying to concretize a new phase in consciousness? Start a new chapter?

I recall that Gebser and Aurobindo came out of that Integral impulse. Maybe something wierd like Rudolf Steiner? An Outline to the Occult Science is such a wierd work. I think we would then be in a very good place to make a case for or against an Integral Age happening.

We may have missed the boat…or maybe it’s just around the corner?

(Ed Mahood) #53

That would get my attention, especially since it is one of Steiner’s books that I haven’t read. What is more, Steiner was a kind of hyper-Christian, but certainly not one in line with orthodoxy of any well-known historical flavor.

(Mary Thaler) #54

@KPr2204, I’m always happy to help out with reading manuscripts! I was the proofreader for a friend’s theology dissertation, so it’s a role I’ve filled before. I’ve got a pretty good grounding in what I’d call North American liberal protestantism, but I enjoy encountering other perspectives. Let me know how I can help.

(Marco V Morelli) #55

Dream on, Katina! Don’t stop now… :smile:

(Katina Press) #56

Thank you Mary and Marco for your offer of support and encouragement. What confuses me is how the intelligentsia is so eager to engage in explorative, occult practices and beliefs, yet, as soon as one offers up Christian mysticism as relevant course of study - we all get our heckles up and the talons come out. All of a sudden, it’s Salem all over again. Geesh!

I maintain that there is an innate human response of fear and trembling towards anything Christ - because of what little it allows the human conscience to get away with. I can understand this fear, as I struggled with it most of my life…until NOW! Now, that I’ve actually read and studied the scriptures with my own eyes and not based on atheistic blogs and meme commentaries.

When I say “Christian Mysticism”, I’m not talking about the Gnostics, Nicolatians (sp) or any other tried and falsified heretical groups. I’m speaking of the “Spirit” the Holy Spirit which Christ refers to many times throughout the NT and in the incarnate form of the OT.

(Ed Mahood) #57

Three questions (for clarity’s sake):

  1. What about the recognized, acknowledged, and accepted mystics in the Christian tradition, such as Teresa of Avila, St. John of the Cross, or Meister Eckhart? What role do/can/may/should they play in the scheme of things? Are they speaking about the same “Spirit” of which you speak? I’m not clear on the spirit-mysticism connection.

  2. “Tried and falsified” by whom?

  3. What is the “incarnate form of the OT”? (That notionality is new to me.)

Many thanks in advance.

(Katina Press) #58

Of course, I don’t mean the above-named individual saints whom actually embodied the Holy Spirit. I am referring to the cults and sects arising form pre - 4th century A.D. to today, incl. Arianism, Montanism, Simonians, Marcionites, Carpocratieans, etc. They all proclaimed some back door, secret knowledge of the Holy Spirit and /or bizarre expression of Christ’s identity.

I’d like to open a dialogue about the supernatural aspects (esp. the transformative power and as it relates to the material world) of the Holy Spirit according to Christ’s descriptions and examples (as well as his contemporaries who exemplified this power.)

That’s all. Don’t complicate it, Ed!

(Marco V Morelli) #59

10 posts were merged into an existing topic: The Book of the Lion and the Lamb - A Bible exposition manuscript

(Katina Press) #61


The incarnate form of Christ’s presence in the OT (not the Holy Spirit). There are several examples throughout the OT, incl. , the narrative of Genesis 14 telling how Abram returns from defeating king Chedorlaomer and meets with Bera the king of Sodom, at which point, Melchizedek High Priest and King of Salem (Salem means “PEace”) brought out bread and wine: and he was [is] the priest of the most high God.