“Spirituality vs. Religion” by Joshua Guild

Below is an illuminating post written by Joshua Guild about how we all have equal access to spiritual enlightenment. Enjoy reading and be blessed. 🙂

“We all have equal access to spiritual enlightenment. Many have and many will come in the form of the truth incarnate… known as spiritual enlightenment. Deity exists in everything… Jesus said those who seek shall find. Jesus is God and yet God is in everything. Spiritual enlightenment in general is God… Why? Because truth, reality and fully living in the present moment is experiencing God. God is all. Can we worship a tree or an animal? Of course not because a tree and an animal are a part of the greater whole… We can only worship what this moment holds because all we hold is this moment. God is one and the entire universe is His reflection. I have seen religion lead people deep into depression… even suicide in a few cases. Religion is man’s attempt to control God. Religion is man’s attempt to herd people like cattle. Walking away from religion makes life better in every sense. Life inside a box is very limiting. Leaving the box of religion will add more life to your marriage; it will improve your income, deepen your friendships and increase your personal feeling of well being. When I stopped attending church I became more at peace then ever before in my life. My own personal reality has become evidence that leaving religion was the best decision I’d ever made. When I thought I had God all figured out it became a great obstacle to my spiritual growth. When I subscribed to teachers who thought they had God all figured out I lived inside their box. The true evidence of ones spiritual practice is their life. When you see the paradox of suffering and joy working together to grow a person then you have witnessed something truly spiritual. When you witness the paradox of love and facing fear working in unison to free a person you have seen something spiritual.

What did spirituality look like before religion? When you can answer that question then you have found true spirituality. Hinduism alone out dates Judaism by thousands of years. What did spirituality look like before Judaism? What did spirituality look like before Hinduism? How did native mankind… including Native Americans connect with God before religion? Answering the above questions takes courage, but the answers lead to true spirituality. What did spirituality look like before the Bible, or church buildings or temples? Remember that the truth unites. All truth is one. After studying the words of Buddha it became apparent that Jesus and Buddha taught identical messages. Buddha taught the same truths as Jesus, only Buddha existed around 500 years before Jesus existed. Now honestly I am not a Buddhist… in fact I will never be apart of any ism or anity ever again. I will never subscribe to any elitist systems. I will never attend heartless meetings or isolate myself to any particular group or category of people. I will never practice cold rituals or follow empty traditions… A man who is truly free will refuse to identify with or to be defined by any system or any person. A free man doesn’t tie his income to his spirituality lest he become a hypocrite or cause his family to live in poverty. A free man isn’t required to warn people he doesn’t know of that which he cannot say for sure. What does spirituality look like… you ask? It looks like a life lived in freedom.

Here is truth… Love leads… while fear threatens… Love gives… while fear takes… Love frees… while fear attempts to gain control. Even Jesus said “those who seek will find”. I don’t live in fear so my words are not polluted by fear. I don’t even believe in the existence of “a healthy fear”. A wise man replaces fear with a form of commonsense that can only be obtained through love. Those who refuse to be lead by love create their own enslavement to fear. The new testament of the Bible defines this as the law vs. grace. The law destroys while grace brings life. We are not under the law, but some choose to place themselves under the law. The law is symbolic of religion… and religion is man’s attempt to control God. Mankind has always sought to control that which he fears. At the heart of religion is a fearful attempt to control, but at the heart of grace is a loving attempt to free. Love and fear are the Yin and Yang of the universe. Life is a scale between love and fear. Love opens our eyes, but fear blinds us. Love is light, but fear is darkness. Love is hot, but fear is cold. Fear crushes people… and love puts them back together. Fear leaves people blind, naked, cold, hungry, thirsty, wounded and alone on a road awaiting the Good Samaritan, but all too often religion gets to them first. Religion exploits the weak and vulnerable. Religion blinds, enslaves and robs people enslaved by fear. Fear comes in many flavors which include guilt, insecurity, jealousy, greed and egotistical behavior all these are forms of fear. Many cultures are built upon fear including religions, governments and corporate cultures. Many Psychological dysfunctions are built upon fear. All the wars in our world are centered on fear. When fear is done away with all become one. The only evil in the world is the fear that veils the fact that all are one.”

– Joshua Guild

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