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A few further aspects may now provide,for those desiring it, in a more extended awareness of some of the religiously active ant-hills, attesting, indirectly now by contrast, the sovereign stature of the Bible soaring, pure rock, aloft (cf. pp. 972-974 supra).
All who came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they might have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep ... I know My sheep, and am known by My own ... But you do not believe because you are not of My sheep (John 10:8-11,14,26).In parallel are: John 14:6, "No man comes to the Father except by Me..." and Matthew 24:24: "For false Christs and false prophets will arise..."
These are the claims made, and these claims we have positively verified. Further, Muhammad (cf. pp. 44 ff.,73 ff.,Ch. 5, pp. 440-445, Ch. 9, pp. 842-857 supra) is simply a predicted false Christ, in the Koran daring to re-cast the character of Jesus by his own admittedly sinful, and academically unhistorical imagination, to make Him come under his own dominion; though the works of Muhammad, like his religion, involve a worldly matter of a force, that directly implicated his "God" in such evils as the muting of resistance to Muhammad's claims, by its mere use.
Religions of force at the faith level all fall by the same criteria, as already shown.
Muhammad's approach embraced force in critical regards, as we saw in Chapter 1 (pp. 50-57), and shall see (*3). This may be observed with pellucid clarity reaching in the zeal of practical conflict, to the faith level. No protestations can hide the reality of what was said and done, and is. As with the U.S.S.R., much done contradicted idealogy in detail and in lethal practice. Thus in the Koran, Surah 8:36-41, on The Spoils, and 48:13-17 (On Victory), we find (it. added):
Tell the unbelievers that if they mend their ways, their past shall be forgiven ... make war on them until idolatry shall cease and God's religion shall reign supreme ... and: Say to the desert Arabs who stayed behind: ''You shall be called upon to fight a mighty nation, unless they embrace Islam.''The ground of cessation is ACCEPTANCE, SUBMISSION TO ISLAM. What ceases is fighting; and fighting in war is force, force here concerning faith. Religious conquest allows the force to stop. Then ? ''As for those who led the way ... and those who nobly followed them, God ... has prepared for them gardens ... where they shall dwell for ever'' (Surah 9:100). He speaks (48:1) of a ''victory, so that God may forgive you your past and future sins.''
Not dissimilar talk came, it appears, from Iran's Khomeini, during the fight with Iraq our day. The concept of plastic keys to heaven, reportedly given to youngsters setting out into battle, does not seem at all contrary to this word of Muhammad .
Such glorying and exultance at the very level of spirit and eternity, of faith and of meaning, is a blasphemy so total as to defame God to the ultimate degree. If force made the difference at this level, then God, who has it all, could use it to do so, without allowing men to make such agonies for each other, and fail so often at that, or to drag each other downwards, as they often do. This denial of the very significance of freedom is the denial of the infinite purity of God.
Nor is this all. Idolaters were to be slain, and often were, or reduced to slavery, or...'convert' to the Moslem religion (Schaff, op.cit. p. 171); Jews and Christians were to be thoroughly humbled and made to pay tribute (see p. 91 supra). The code word is 'submission', the very essence of Allah; and people simply have to submit, in blood or life or thought or deed: force rules, and by force this religion swept over much of Central Asia, sub-Saharan Africa, through Turkey and India, some 5 centuries after its first onslaught (cf. Encyclopedia Britannica, 1986, Vol.2, pp. 409-410), with the Shiite variety, attesting interpretive authority over their texts, rather like the Pope in Romanist operations, also prodigious in the misuse of force.
Europe nearly paid dearly for the religion of dominance at the Battle of Tours when in 732 A.D., the armed myriads menaced such freedom as Europe had. Charles Martel however was successful in repulsing them. Leo the Isaurian similarly was able to overthrow their assaults on Constantinople in 717, 718, the more remarkable in that this was nearer to the centre of Islam geographically (H.A.L. Fisher, A Historyof Europe, p. 143).
Alas what the Saracen, Moslem invaders were then unable to do, before long the pope would be doing in his own way, using deplorable force in substitution for spiritual weapons such as would have suited his profession (II Corinthians 10:4), against Christians. (The Popes had not at that time been brought to that unholy imperialism which tended to match some of Muhammad's excesses, but came to proceed more on an individual, victim by victim basis before the more advanced involvement with the Holy Roman Empire, which would offer grand scales - *1 - of repression.)
So the untenable religions of violence at the faith level create turmoil in a globe which, to be accurate, often asks for just such appalling horrors as scimitar instead of spirit, by its hardened resistance to the claims of Christ. He Himself was far from ignoring this recalcitrance and its consequences, when on earth, or as the Word before His coming. (Cf. Matthew 13:15, 23:36-39, Luke 19:41-44, 17:25-31, Matthew 23-31-36, Amos 4:4-13, Isaiah 24:1-6, Revelation 9:18-21.) The tenderness of His pleadings sought deliverance, He coming not to condemn but to save (John 3:17), and offering Himself, to deliver; yet the grounds of His righteous government and the grounds of His government were intense, and shall be, as we have seen in Chapters 6-9 supra, and may investigate in Appendix B, dealing not least with Matthew 23:37.
Christ's majestic wonder and irrefutable authenticity (which, according to prophecy, required force to assail it, and according to the wisdom of God, blended this force into sacrifice and that into victory for sinners, as predicted also): this leaves at the personal level all comparison not merely wrong, but outrageous. Even His mercy was effective, and even His 'weakness' was triumphant. In fact, in nothing did He fail, all plans proceeding to consummation.
Not only did Christ meet the non-violence criterion (at the level of faith), He gave it precisely that majestic surplus and extraordinary facility of wonder, which we find so consistently as we test the things of the Bible... ''led as a lamb to the slaughter'' (Isaiah 53:7). How far other than this cherishing solicitude were the methods of the religions of violence! How far less are their exhibits in practice, as persons, and as violators of integrity with violence, as well!
Predicted by Christ, such false prophets as Muhammad, indeed such antichrists who would replace Him by force and not reason, by implicit libel on God, by subtlety and not truth, have nothing to predict their own coming as authentic, as He did. They know nothing of the date of their death, as He did, or the predicted nature of their work, as did Christ. In fact, they do not give in God's name, to the minds that God made, any rational ground to believed: while they provide acute evidence for their rejection.
Hence they exhibit merely an irksome irrationality. If God were the speaker of such products, He would have failed signally to identify Himself from within the maze and morass of those who can use the name, as almost any other name! Indeed there appear no even plausible grounds to believe more than such as the plundering prophet Muhammad, behind the Koran. Therefore to accept this as divine, provides only more ground of offence against the God who made evidence and reason: a blasphemy against the necessary greatness of the Sovereign Speaker of the universe, it is a arbitrary substitute for reliable grounds, as well as providing inalienable grounds for rejection in terms of force in the area of "conversion" (cf. pp. 50 ff., and 65 ff.; cf. *22, *27, Chapter 1 supra)... to name but one of those shown.
To forsake the authenticated stature of Christ, declared by Muhammad sinless, for the admittedly sinful and actually unverified and unvalidated words of Muhammad via an angel, is to forsake by an act of will the evidence God has been at pains to provide.
As noted, indeed (*2 on pp. 829-832 supra), there is the negative consideration also, that the allegedly almighty Allah does not manage1 to carry out what devotees organise in the Middle East, under the much-proclaimed massive 'provocation' of the Jews and others, and this despite the unmitigated and passionate favour for the use of force in war, to which Muhammad made commitment for his cause. The Jews' God said He would discipline them; send the Messiah; He foretold the Gospel, said it would reach the Gentiles, and told of the prolonged Jewish rejection of it, all just as we have shown in Chapter 9 supra. He told of the the Jews' return, assisted, from many nations, of their enormously successful wars against disproportionate numbers, the taking of half of Jerusalem and of the Jews being at length back in Jerusalem. It happened.
The Lord God who gives scientific method such scope said it would, and said one reason He was telling it was this: that it could be seen that it would happen. Having false and unreliable prophets receive the death penalty, all as we have seen earlier: He claimed in clearest terms that no other so-called 'god' could or would equal His own prophetic accuracy2.
Precisely as He said on that last point, it is also the case; and the Moslem 'faith' falls doubly here. First, the allegedly almighty 'god' back of it does not prevail in alleged causes of concern over the vast tracks of time; and secondly, the Jewish God, the God whom they served in the Old Covenant, foretold all the steps of the scenario to the end. The power of God is seen in this revelation; but also in the timing of this revelation; and here the Koran is one again simply not a competitor.
Thus to dump Jesus Christ for the Moslem beliefs, casts aside the revelation strongly attested as proceeding back to the Flood (see Ebla, and 3. infra, Progressing to Nowhere: Home Like No Place) and in line to earlier background, in favour of a parvenu, a religion with a Koran that arises some 600 years after Christ: not 1500 years before, or equipped with attestation consonant with a backward movement to the dawn of history, in the related records. To say no more, Muhammad is 2000 years too late, in showing the NECESSARY DIVINE REMEDY, to meet the case of sin in a world undestroyed, argued in Chapter 1. That tardiness (cf. p. 50 ff. supra) is reminiscent of Muhammad's tendency to take this and that from other religions, and excludes the Moslem 'faith' just as surely as does its lack both of remedy for sin (pp. 44 ff. supra) and of rational attestation or grounds to exhibit the divine author; while its use of violence at the faith level, with its implicitly blasphemous implications is similarly fatal.
Somewhat similar in the use of power, the Pope in a parallel but different way takes over 'Christ' (Ch.4, pp. 353-374 supra; Ch.10, pp. 1032-1086 infra) ... by changing 'Him', also 'capturing' His powers, and making the 'faithful' obedient to himself.
In the most profound discord with such a practice, Peter proclaimed Christ's own name as the only one necessary for salvation (Acts 4:12), the unique one given for the necessity of salvation; and he emphasised it categorically - ''under heaven''. The Pope however makes his own name (office, power, function) necessary. (See the Bull, Unam Sanctam and other relevant elements: supra pp. 920 ff., 950 ff., and Extension, No Other Name, pp. 1070 ff. infra; and esp. *2 and *l infra for present Section.) This fatal fascination for flat contradiction of the word of God leaves the Romanist organisation, a fertile mother of heresy and inventor of religion with, alas, no base but a mouth, not the mouth of God.
It is in fact extraordinary and remarkable, claiming our utmost attention that, while each of these leaders of major world powers in religion has used, and unlike the Church of the Lord, has principles which authorise the use of, force (*1) in the area of religion as such, and specifically in that of personal response to it, each has also changed Christ into 'manageable proportions'. One did it in narrative in the Koran, the other both in adding traditions and in 'turning' Him into an idolatrised piece of bread, despite His being statedly, according to the scripture, "reserved in heaven" (Acts 3:19-21... cf. Acts 1:7); and despite His explicit statement, in context, that the words He had spoken, dealing with sacrificial eating, were matters "of spirit":
The words that I speak to you are spirit and they are life (John 6:63)."Indeed," He declared, "it is the Spirit who gives life, the flesh profits nothing." Again, He decisively announced: "What then if you should see the Son of Man ascend where He was before ?" He is simply corporeally unavailable, by scripturally repeated announcements, for idolatrous cannibalism, or lassoing with the long lasso of 'theology'. When, indeed, the saints burned by the Roman Inquisitors, were murdered on account of unscriptural theories on the place of the body of Christ in the masses themselves, Christ was unavailable for further murder, in mass or by other means, having once died (Hebrews 9:25-28). To this, we shall return.
Each then of these false Christs, the Pope and Muhammad, in the strictest sense has been taking over Christ's role, and is an antichrist. Each has systematically used force (*1), and neither accepts the simple sufficiency of the sacrificial substitutionary offering of Christ by Himself, for salvation (Romans 3:21-24, 4:25-5:11, 8:31-39, 10:9, Titus 3:7, I John 1:7-22, 5:13, Galatians 3:10-13, 5:1-5, I John 2:20,27), to faith.
Each must add or subtract or manipulate (if it were possible) the dying or the point of it, or the corpse for it, either the dying of Christ or the record, by subtraction or by addition, until a brand new 'Christ' (II Corinthians 11:4, 13) being formed, the proponent, be he priest or prophet in this case, becomes in very deed, an antichrist. As a substitutionary 'prophet', he dispenses with the substitutionary atonement - the case of Muhammad; as a substitutionary priest whose word is final, or spiritual ruler, he sacrifices saints - the case of the Pope.
These usurpers have both counted it service to God - they and many with them in their generations - to kill (*3) the saints of God: thereby magnificently though grossly fulfilling John 16:2-3. Both together, these false Christs, these mock-up Messiahs and their followers ostensibly control, lead or propel thousands of millions of the people of this globe3. What more would one want, in terms of vigorous fulfilment of the word, the tenor and spirit of the many prophecies concerning the numerous character, popularity and performances of the antichrists to come... made in the scriptures (*3).
It follows that statistically, 'comparative religion' is, to a highly significant degree, an arithmetic exercise in terms of the specific fulfilment of prophecy. While in terms of popularity, as predicted, these may appear as challenges, they are not so in terms of either reason or truth - and though undoubtedly inimical, and even hostile to the Gospel (as many corpses show), they represent from a scriptural perspective, fulfilments of God's own challenge. This was to try and see if His prophecies could be matched (Isaiah 43; 48); and in this process, He has even indicated the strategy and the folly, the 'success' and the perspective of the operation of the 'opposition' - asif to make fools of them all.
It is rather like the case of Elijah, the man of God who repeatedly, for the honour and glory of God, told to the King of Israel the movements of the king of Syria... in advance! Small wonder that foreign king... lost patience. Such power was beyond his knowledge: he thought a spy must have done it. But in our present field, the 'spy' of predestination and divine foreknowledge has operated thousands of years in advance (cf. II Kings 6:8-23), foretelling the operations of the lost leader of this world!
In terms of this prediction of God that He will predict as none else concerning what is to be, there is the earlier focus, of course, on Christ's own murder, which preceded that of so many of His saints: "The servant'', as He said, ''is not greater than his Master." If men did it to Him, they would not spare His servants. So it is, and that too is verificatory fulfilment of prophecy. With Christ, (in view of the central importance of His murder as a sacrifice, foreseen, repeatedly predicted by Him on earth and voluntarily performed in love): there was a large time gap from the prediction's first appearance, to its performance - over one thousand years in fact, for many prophecies, and far more from the first one (Genesis 3:15).
Not only predicted, but strategically planned by God (1 Corinthians 2:6-7) in His love, power and wisdom, this set the tapestry of events, and showed the hue of divine personality for contrast with the coming antichrist system, to which Christ explicitly referred:
And now I have told you before it come to pass, that, when it is come to pass, you might believe. Hereafter I will not talk much with you; for the PRINCE OF THIS WORLD COMES, AND HAS NOTHING IN ME. But that the world may know that I love the Father, and, as the Father gave me commandment, even so I do. Arise, let us go from here (John l4:29-31).Since then the antichrists abound, they beautifully verify the scripture's quiet assurance in dealing not only with the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, but the later misuse of force and the attainment of popularity by their baneful and sometimes violent means. Thus it is that predicted, baseless 'competitors' flurry and bluster in the world in multiplied mutiny, while the one Jesus Christ leaves His words, inexorably fulfilled, in simple unity. HE is the One; they, they are the many; and they are encompassed and enveloped, in style, number and performance by His word like gnats in jars.
Thus the Gentiles (and that is a status occupied in general by England and the Arabs alike, by American sects and Arab fundamentalists in startling similarity of spiritual essence)... these, in milling millions, resist and reject what the Jews threwout physically: the Lord Jesus Christ.
The lament for the Jews is nationalised and specialised, but the world itself is that which God so loved when He sent (John 3:16) to donate salvation rather than to enforce damnation (3:18-19, 12:47). The one God however continues with explicit word and clear directions, already written down for history to follow - as it obediently does; and operative in this mêlée of modernity, let us hear some of the divine expression of love and desire, mingled with justice and determination:
For my people have committed two evils: They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, and hewn themselves cisterns - broken cisterns that can hold no water ( Jeremiah 2:13).Hear Moses in Deuteronomy 10:17:
For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality nor takes a bribe...Thus too Psalm 96:4-5 speaks:
He is to be feared above all gods: for all the gods of the peoples are idols.Singular in concern, single in number, this one God consists in a fellowship of unity, being never alone even when by Himself: and He declares the drab futility of the blasphemy of the multiplication of gods, christs, and prophets, as men - filled with desire - make foolish experiment in the domain of their Maker Himself. In this, they merely, the while, are bringing ruin to themselves and fulfilment to prophecy... Thus prophecy is continually verified even by the enemy: and that is strategy dear and near to the heart of the Christian apologist!
To revert: the Pope then is a false Christ, explicitly 'using' some of the justifying powers of Jesus Christ, bringing money into it ( Boettner, op. cit. Ch.XII ), and adding objects of worship: thereby surrounding a usurped 'Christ' who turns, from time to time, into a piece of bread in order to be worshipped on earth, though physically declared to be in heaven, and reserved there ! ... ''until the times of restoration of all things'' (Acts 3:19-21, cf. I John 3:1-3, John 6:54-55,61-63).
One of the martyrs of the Inquisition exposed more of the madness. Since we are emphatically assured (and later reassured by Vatican II), that the bread and wine are Christ, then on that basis, equally assuredly, the crucifixion never happened, 'Christ' having committed suicide at the Last Supper, thus forfeiting the office of Saviour. The scripture is quite clear in Hebrews Ch.'s 2, 9 and 10: Christ was true man and died but once, offering Himself. He dies no more, and in His Person, cannot be sacrificed (Revelation 1:18-19). Protestants rightly remember, as He instructed; but none can, except in illusion, confusion and delusion, pretend to sacrifice the unsacrificeable.
The follies and scope of the Roman heresy appear consistently, and are consistently appalling. Based on illusion, they breed illusion, and are a classic case of illusionism, as in the end, are all antichrists who, lacking truth, employ whatever is convenient, available or effective for their purposes... deceitful, deluded, or delusive; or some combination.
Elements of what we discuss here in terms of the monolithic singularity of God and the pestiferous multiplication of illusionist pretenders, we shall consider in the next Section, in terms of an excursion both more detailed and more specialised in terms of fulfilled prophecy, and the assault forces of violence at the faith level. Here our interest is more general, more comparative.
To revert to the concept of 'comparative religions' seen in the authoritative and predictive setting of Scripture, and in the perspective of the One who did the works and spoke the words that worked, Jesus Christ, we mention Judaism. It is a case of false prophets (predicted by Christ, Matthew 24:11, in terms of many of them who would deceive many: double multiplication). In the case of Judaism, the rational, revelatory record of the Old Testament, their own, concerning Christ is simply rejected by their teaching (cf. Prophecy II, Ch. 9, and pp. 53-62 supra). Of all this, even their own record (*4) predicted they would be guilty (Isaiah 29:9-14 - cf. 30:8-11, and 49:6-7, 52:13 - 53:12); and indeed on these or similar grounds, all the world stands guilty, whether physically, metaphysically or morally.
Who is this who comes... This One who is glorious in His apparel, travelling in the greatness of His strength ? I who speak in righteousness, mighty to save.Some of Protestantism - which is merely the name for the body which refuses the arrogations of power of the Pope (as an antichrist) - some even of this also falls. It kills, not with sword but with pen and spoken word. Protestantism is right to do what it must to sever from false human sovereignty (Matthew 23:10), and to do otherwise is folly and unsound; but merely to sever from one error does not ensure deliverance from others. It does not, per se, ensure that none other will supplant Christ: this refusal of that role for the Pope (cf. Ezekiel 21:27). Some Protestants have themselves followed false prophets; and indeed, this in general is the century par excellence for the practice, both with exotic sects and with esoteric theologians (pp. 71 ff., 125-128, 132-133, 150-158, 119-123, 179 ff., 440 ff., Ch. 9, Section 4B - pp. 842ff. supra, and Daniel File, Section 5, pp. 911ff. supra).
Indeed, our century has abounded with these false teachers with unique profusion, and so fulfilled Peter's predictions and that direction set by Christ, for the development towards the end of the Age, as we have seen; so that not to notice is to be wilfully blind:
When these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draws near (Luke 21:28).It is all covered, from the profusion to the confusion, to the dilation of diction, the arrant oratory as we have already seen. Yet here we see the acceleration of the degradation (*5), which is in itself not merely predicted, but a sign of the nearer approach of the end of this particular phase, stage and test, before the coming of Jesus Christ to wind up the segment and assume more obvious stage direction:
This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men will be lovers of their own selves...without natural affection... traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God...these... also resist the truth, men of depraved mind, reprobate concerning the faith... Evil men and seducers shall become worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived (II Timothy 3:1-13).The NEW AGE movement (Ch. 9, pp. 867-874 supra) is particularly useful in attestation of the truth of God's prophetic forefinger. The Lord through its misdirected deeds, which fit with such harmony into the predictions, is warning us with more and more facts... data, reason, evidence... in a woeful world, which even complains of the results of its own delusions. These too are clearly predicted from the Incomparable Monolith, the Rock:
The day of the Lord...shall not come, except there come the falling away first... for the mystery of iniquity does already work; only He who now hinders will continue to hinder until He be taken out of the way. And then shall that wicked one be revealed... whose coming is... with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth that they might be saved. And FOR THIS CAUSE GOD SHALL SEND THEM AN ACTIVE DELUSION THAT THEY MIGHT BELIEVE THE LIE, that they might all be judged, who did not believe the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness ( II Thessalonians 2:1-12 - cf. I Kings 22:13-36).Not merely do we find the confusion and delusion, but the moral ground and the judicial consequence; and if we paused further, the purpose also, in this segment of scripture.
God in the scripture has for the church both denounced the "new gods coming newly up" (cf. pp. 303-307 supra and 11 Timothy 3:16) and forbidden the use of force (*6) as a means of operation for His church (John 18:36-37 and supra; also cf. *l,*2, this Section infra). As God, He has something to say, and what does not speak as God is not even relevant to the issue of revelation from the infinite God. Perhaps the 'man of sin' (II Thessalonians 2:3 in our above quoted scriptural context) who lavishly does the job of antichrist in really workmanlike style, will bear this in mind as he speaks as God, as we have seen is predicted. (Cf. II Thessalonians 2:4 ... "He, as God, sits in the temple of God showing himself that he is God'; Daniel 7:8, 25; and notice Daniel 11:36-37, for the "time of the end": "The king... shall not regard any god; for he shall magnify himself above all.")
The NEW AGE movement has much in common with Eastern Mysticism (New Age, Extension, loc.cit., supra, cf. Zwartz, op.cit. pp. 97-101); and its use of the name of Christ, like the plashy procedures of some culinary Pied Piper, is being spread thin, like lemon butter on bread, so that it can relay its prestige or power or popularity or comely credentials to any sort of 'faith' or person or feeling or thing or inwardness or movement or religious fiesta or fiasco, whilst stressing dynamism, inwardness and other interesting grounds of appeal. The inward antichrist, amidst Eastern meditation, contemplative surveys and at least peripheral attachment to the sites of departure, whether in Christendom or in the East, brings inbuilt provision for any christs or gods or figures which may appeal, so that all being acceptable, Jesus Christ sheds the exclusivism and becomes... a new creation of the New Age!
And that, of course, is an antichrist, since any creation of God is a rather advanced form of confusion (*7) - as well as of idolatry.
This merger with mystic miasma is redolent of Eastern mysticism; and Hinduism in particular, one of the 'benefactors'... as also beneficiaries of the New Age movement, does not rise significantly above it. (See supra pp. 107 ff., 59 ff., 199-204, 91-96, 3-10 and Chapter 3.) The eternal, almighty God not being the speaker, the religion is demonstrated irrelevant; and failure on the other hand, even to acknowledge the Creator-creature distinction renders it doubly bankrupt, and as noted, fails the religion as a possible proponent of truth. Its many 'gods', again, violate the systematic needs shown, whilst its variable perspectives and celestial players mark it a product of human imagination, by nature as incapable of psychoanalysing God, as of measuring out a reliable picture. (See supra Ch. l, pp. l ff., 41-47, 36 ff..)
Hinduism thus has no claim on our attention and its deficiencies render it perhaps more like a cavity than an ant-hill in the presence of the Rock. As Vos puts it in his Christian Introduction to the Religions of the World, p. 37:
Amongst other things, HINDUISM is lacking in:
i. A belief in a personal, almighty God, creator and ruler of all things, who is himself distinct from the universe.
ii. A belief in the doctrine of creation, which is basic to any true understanding of the universe.
Trusting in a 'state of consciousness' of ancient purveyors who saw things 'clearly', as it is felt, they represent merely an odyssey of gods that are no God and a philosophising towards the allegedly 'unknowable' basis of all things, which, as with all such attempts, successfully ensures no logical validity to their declaration, rendering the religion not merely bankrupt, but disbanded and dispersed relative to any positive relation to the truth. (See Chapter 3 supra.)
With the 'unknowable' also inarticulate to man (cf. pp. 43 ff., 88-89 supra), the Hindu religion founders not least on its own inability to know even this, from any basis which could grant validity to such defining prowess about this unknowable; and it falls just where Kant did (cf. pp. 424 ff. supra, and my Predestination And Freewill ... Appendix on Kant).
What cannot be conceived, continues unable to be conceived, and is not available for discussion. It is in fact always marvellous just how much can be said about what statedly 'cannot be known'! After all, the Taitinya Upanishad, as cited by McDowell and Stewart in their Understanding the Non-Christian Religions, p. 23, has this to say:
Brahman is he whom speech cannot express, and from whom the mind, unable to find him, comes away baffled.Concerning Brahman, they also cite the 'sage' Yajnavalkya: It is
... without anything inside or outside.Vos, op.cit., p. 34, on the Upanishads connotes the answer to the query as there given: What is reality ? 'The answer given to these questions is that the... reality is... Brahma... regarded as impersonal... self-existent, infinite, omnipresent... The possibility of absorption' into what is called Brahman is regarded as an auspicious one.
We noted how marvellous it is what can be said about what is not known (a fortiori about what 'cannot' be known). It is more marvellous what can be said on the basis of what cannot be known: about what really is... ! For example, what shall be said of all the above divulgements on Brahman ? It has this or that potential relative to absorption, incorporates these and those persons, things, is self-existent. Why we are highly informed in completely articulated categories! All this, when you come to think about it, is an astonishingly clear-cut structure of intellectual concepts: which thing at once violates the pretensions of unknowability.
You cannot have it both ways. (See also Extension 1, Buddhism, The Clashing Clangour of Contradiction. Alas that intended 'correction' appears possibly worse than the sickness it addresses, 'doctor' and 'patient' religions awry and amiss.)
Again, the principle of freedom may be contradicted, in the affairs of State and religion, whilst those who do not agree... are deemed guilty of error: something quite impossible without liberty. The principle of guilt may be contradicted, whilst those who disagree... are deemed guilty of avoiding the issue, or other sundry guilts, for which - for example in erstwhile Russia or current China - they may be called upon, amidst 'moral' and indignant investigation - to part mind from body! The effort to contradict absolute creation, on the part of oriental mysticism, while quite as ludicrous, and for the same reason as that applicable to Western philosophy, has sorrows of its own.
Imagine, just imagine removing every aspect of something so that it has a nice 'doughy' aspect, then proceeding as follows: Knead well, put in hot oven, and behold - the 'one' is there, only it is not there; for 'it' is utter void, we read, is 'roaring silence' or Kant-wise, it is unknowable: although such and such knowable things like self-existence are, as we see, fearlessly if not cheerfully affirmed of it. A party game? on the zany side ? No alas, not a game at all! Further, the 'it' is so well known that it may accurately be declared that it cannot be known: and to know that, you need a great, a vast knowledge of your subject, to be knowledgeable about the unknowable.
To know that it is not known is one thing; but to reach this summit of assertion, that it cannot be known, how knowledgeable must you be !
In short, to undo creation is not to explain it; and to deny its every known phase in a search of some hapless mysticism, all you do is abstract from what you can know and talk in self-contradiction about the unexpressed, whilst blithely and necessarily defining it sufficiently to characterise the jaunt.
In religion, here is THE QUINTESSENTIAL RETREAT FROM REALITY.
Of particular whimsicality is the notion of reincarnation. With spiritual... engineering systems held at the ready for the great processing into new form and format, here comes the re-usable, non-throw-away soul. (It is, after all, quite a change to re-use a pre-used soul that once, for example, was non-analytical, but now must proceed to the level of acting as an analytical being.) The it-is-not-there divinity that lacks, meanwhile, works night and day making adjustments for re-entry of the re-usable soul to the terrestrial sphere, richly operative in conceptual and constructive principles; for the whatever-it-is soul must be manoeuvred back to earth without damage to its sensitive reconstruction, which allows it its new field and scope of operation. Here we have at work, a sort of spiritual space-station, that is not there.
Even if, however, 'it' itself were there in the Eastern mysticisms, it would have to have design capacity powers and precision, managerial ability, understanding, be adept at data cognition and and so forth. Rather, however, than having a non-creator that is not there creating things, so that logically they may exist, and then, without being there, processing things in metempsychotic transition (i.e. re-incarnatable souls, awash from the earth): logically one must face the fact... All this is illegitimate irrationality.
This fey fiasco operates as an avoidance technique of a DIVINE CAUSE. It is surreptitiously used with very knowable characteristics all along: dethroned, de-named, the dextrously diced deity is very much used, whilst being denied. The Gentiles, this way and that, certainly have their own version of the Jews, who crucified Christ, in collision with truth. These Gentiles crucify the very concept of God!
It is rather like having a parent, and concentrating on not quite knowing that authority is there... "Is it really my daddy who is there ? After all," says the sophisticated child, "what do we really know about this being ? Is it not enough just to be sharing in his underlying... consciousness ? We do not know what he is like, so we just allow our consciousness to be anti-differentiated, and relax into the knowledge (gained contrary to alleged possibility, in the quasi-religious case) that he is love. Indeed, shall we not just allow the consciousness in us all, to be over us all, and without possibility of knowing anything, lose all knowledge, except the part that we feel would be good to insert into this kind of thing before it gets us down."
They would be clever children, if illogical; and one would entertain the utmost concern for their ... upbringing. They could virtually ... do as they please.
ii) 'Consciousness' - an escape clause, in a word ?
Is 'it' a consciousness then, as some followers for example in the Hindu religion would like to conceive ?
Can what has no mind, be conscious ? Therefore "it" has a mind. Can a mind fail to activate into any actual thought ? Yes, if asleep, doped or wholly confused. Do we, if words mean anything (even if they don't, the floor is free from verbal prostitution in that case, and from confusion posing as thought - the religion could not even be formulated), then refer in such a case, to a being whose mind is arrested in development, operation or in competence ? Such a being however is incapable of the brilliant technology of our bodies and brains, and of being the basis for the brains that make their own technology. (See 'vacuity', pp. 1009 ff. infra.) Such an approach, contra-causal in character and anti-operator4, is excluded as so often seen in these pages, its miserable 'champion' merely steeped with us in a series of systems and laws through which it exists. It is derivative, not deriving, and serves for nothing to the point.
Since, then, this 'it' is not causally relevant, productively involved or processively particular, it is irrelevant to the origin and operation of the observable nature of the universe, of all indeed that is before us; and is a construction, partly through mere negation of the particular, in a vain search for the underlying or general principle; and partly for its hoped for... rest. In confusion, however, there is no ground for rest.
If it is not a mere fairy-tale, a grave kind of fairy-tale 'for older children', then it is a psychological device which shudders at logic, yet uses thought; one which denies categories, but yet is awash with them; a production of human thought that accounts for nothing, but is felt - shall we say - lyrically desirable, existentially noteworthy... (How new is existentialism, after all!)
Restful to the de-activated personality ? there lies its hoped for boon: it is a sort of Lord of the Rings effusion of pent-up imagination that fails to take seriously what is before us, whilst there is 'constructed' an embodiment of negativity. This may be, however, for all that, entirely and gratuitously able to be replete with such un-negative things as love or other desiderata as, from time to time, it may seem good to have 'there'; whilst retaining - even though not 'itself' ...there! ability to communicate such features to its slumberers.
Surely Kant may be Western in his inconsistencies; but the East knew the glories of rejecting the reason with which they reason while still reasoning, long before him. (On relevant dating: see Part C3, PROGRESSING TO NOWHERE, HOME LIKE NO PLACE, infra.) Short-cut gods (*7) like this, then, are a projection of desire, an endeavour to synthesise thoughts and sensations, with unspeakable logical lapse: while reason is used, yet it must accommodate to the denial of its simplest requirements of consistency and grounds.
This provides us one more god arising from the ground, one more of the genus of gods 'newly come up' (to go back to the defiant dabbling even in the times of Moses), an early psychological heresy with none of the discipline of historical involvement, a partial extrapolation of consciousness with none of the burden of meeting the evidence, upon it. Its authority is the authority of hope and its hope is the authority of experience; but untested and merely savoured experience, in which man, not God is of the essence; for there is, in this religion, no one actually 'there' to 'tell' him, so the finite has to come to terms with an ultimately speechless infinite, which of course has nothing to say, though men may chatter.
In fact, it is an aborted residue of thought that went only to sensations and experiences and desire, and failing to follow where reason and evidence led, it abides a half-made and half-demolished vacancy, where unrepentant sinners may hide in the metaphysical misery of unspeakable principles, that are yet spoken, and unverbalisable essences, that are yet available complete with instruction hand-books of 'holy' writings, as to how to make the best use of them. In practice, it is merely an aborted partial use of logic that denies the Lord in the polluted aspirations of human experience. Man is NOT good at making God, as this demonstrates.
It thus lapses and collapses in the end into entire inconsistency. Filled with self-contradiction, it is a testimonial to the depth of man's alienation from God, a love-affair with a shadow and a negative into which the odd desirables are poured from time to time, with perfect complacency, from the world of sense and observation: a world, however, whose evidence is left, and whose wishes are kept in an actuality-annihilator. This is allowed to be, just so far, not to talk, only to be spoken about: required to be unthinkable (as is appropriate for negation), it is a base, identity and entity of much accumulated verbiage. Thus, what is required by reason is bypassed, and what is desired by experience is inserted into a mock-up being that can have no logical existence, a happy harbour for religious sentiment, wholly unable to express its non-self, where religious ships do have the waves of rest lap upon them in the harbour which is not there.
It will now the more clearly be understood why this Section is dealing with confusion, delusion, illusion and diffusion: man in a twist, in a mist, with no gist (pp. 972, 976 supra). How truly, of the religions based on man, as on individuals, it is said:
All we like sheep have gone astray. we have turned every one to his own way (Isaiah 53:6).
Man, and the religions he makes, are no fit ground for worship. Man must come to the God who created him, not seek to create the god that suits him.
Page 1001 continued in the next section
1. Koran, Surah 48:22 notes: ''If the unbelievers join battle with you, they shall be put to flight. They shall find none to protect or help them.'' See *3. This is falsified, not verified over hundreds of years with precision. This is merely emphasised by the fact that in the Middle-East, the exact opposite has become routine! Israeli victories rocked the world
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2. Even in a weak, chosen format, He prevailed (I Corinthians 1:21-25).
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3. 'Operation World' statistics source book, noted New Life, Melbourne, 7th. October 1993, gives for 1990, combined world percentage: 35.5.
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4. EAST WEST,
GOD'S BEST At this point, there are undoubted similarities between
this Eastern religion, and the Western dreamtime of evolutionism.
On the latter philosophy, questions not dissimiliar to those used here,
may be asked. (Cf. pp. 88, ,
Thus, we enquire of it:
give birth to cytological OR intellectual language,
will Chance form concepts,
or ascertain its own 'Nature'!
Such an idea
is merely a mystic miasma of smuggled and unnamed spirituality,
if not indeed the very heart of a baudy seraglio of illicit mental lust,
an imbroglio of the mind!
And all of this, what does it rest on ?
On Mr Matter, we may call him in such a construction, for 'he' then has all of the habiliments of personality: Matter! which itself is only a theory of mind...
It is remarkable what can be done when logic is captive to language and language to lust.
Children of consciousness, including man, are the spawn of this dream; but daydreams do not account for the birth of the earth and all that is in it. They merely emphasize the gap between raving and reality.
Designers know the value of imagination, indeed, the wonder of moving in a world of thought; but they also know that the translation into the world of reality, of that dream, involves labour, effort, understanding of operations outside the mind: a hard task that requires a very sufficient cause to fulfil! It is time people ceased worshipping the 'paper' on which the language of life is written, and addressed themselves to its writer.
West and East,
each in its own way, turn to myths, fables as was predicted for it all
(cf. p. 1025 infra).
It is such a lapse - one both ignominous and unconscionable - to avoid such a brilliant star: yes He made the stars, though men in billions prefer for themselves, a certain dimness! That God in His brilliance has suffered this to be so is part of His immeasurable depth, the creation of personality.
That He has provided
freely for escape from this dimness is profound love.
Man has been created with labour, in a real world; and in reality he must repent of his unrealism and his misuse of all that has been divinely accorded him.
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