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Found 12 results

  1. Hello everyone! I am a new forum member but have been a minister with ULC since 2010. My ministry is a healing one. I became a Reiki practitioner and found that even though Reiki itself is not a religion, it became a very deep connection to Spirit for me. I work with my Loving Angels and those of my clients to channel the unconditional healing Love of Spirit (the Universe) which is all around us to clear blocks that build up within us during our daily lives. Stress, anger and negativity all contribute to our not receiving this healing energy automatically. Lack of this energy is what causes us to become ill, feel alone and unLoved. In the Love of Spirit (the Universe) we are all One. Kind of a very long way to say that I became a minister because I felt that I could better learn to share my belief that simply LOVE is the answer. It is the one thing that is included in almost every currently established religion. I try to make it simple. Just be LOVE and all else falls into place. In Love we find peace, in Love we find healing, in Love we become ONE. Thanks for this forum where we can share our beliefs without fear of ridicule from negativity. Be Blessed, Be LOVE ♥ Joannie
  2. This post is about the Master of Chaplaincy Lesson #16 on "The Soul-Friend." Life provides us many opportunities to help us help others, sometimes stretching beyond what we sometimes think is possible. The following is a post that I put on my website 2 days ago, but is pertinent for this lesson. Jesus operated without a church. Yes, he taught in the Temple, but he also taught wherever people were. Taking this example, I was asked by my friend, who has since died, if I could give her dying sister energy work and counseling sessions. I went to the sister's house for her sessions, when she could no long come to my office. She knew she was dying of cancer, yet this woman remains one of the most positive, emotionally and spiritually stable people I have ever met. She asked for reflexology. I looked up at her angelic face, which radiated with a beautiful smile. One day my friend called me and told me her sister was calling everyone she wanted to say good-bye to, and asked me if I could come to her sister one last time. I should mention I never went out to house calls in my professional work. But this case was different. On this day, I showed up for the last reflexology session, greeted by her incredible smile of joy. At the end of the reflexology session, she looked so peaceful and was grateful I had come. I didn't want to leave the room, feeling like if I didn't leave the room, she would not die. We talked, but finally I had to leave. She said, "Good bye," smiling and at peace. I edged out of the room, graced by that beautiful smile of hers. What could make her so positive, so joyous, so at peace at a time like this? Her belief in a loving God and the eternal promises of the after life impressed upon my heart. The next thing I knew my friend who had ignored her own health, had cancer. I would drive the two and one-half hours one way to pick her up and bring her to my house for the weekend, after I had retired from work, giving her a break. I treasured these visits. In the end, I got a call from her family, asking me to come down so she could say good-bye to me too. A smile also graced her lips. The common thread between my friend and her sister were the incredible lives they lived, which included much struggle and strife, more than many other lives I have witnessed, even to this day. How they overcame such odds against them, while retaining their serenity and peace, is a tremendous lesson in love, on a life well lived, and an indelible model of integrity when at the end of life. Jesus operated without a church. That is what I am doing. This lesson asked if anyone had reached out to us as a soul-friend. Both of these women I mention sought me not just for human friendship and fun. They were seeking a God connection, a prayer connection and a healing connection. These women had a great love for each other, but they also had a beautiful belief in life after death, in a God who loves them. I felt honored to help these women in this way.
  3. There are times in life when it is important to stop, take a moment, and say THANK YOU with a heart full of gratitude. This is one of those times. I have been away from the ULC for three years, and am very glad to be back. The Universal Life Church was here, as if waiting for me with open arms, to finish classes in the Seminary which I had begun. Everyone has their own lives, their own ministries, all with time constraints. Yet Rev. Amy Long and Brother Kevin, filled with patience and guidance, welcomed me back, right where I left off. I am also grateful for the institution of the ULC in the first place. What a vision and a creation, including and allowing all of us to participate. This does not happen in isolation. During these past three years, I have felt isolated without the ULC in my life. I have missed the fellowship with you, my brother and sister ministers, sharing in the forum, and posting my classes, getting your feedback and sharing as well. It's soul affirming to be among the love, joy and heart of all of you. It's good to be back.
  4. I just adore my friend who so eloquently wrote this.... Having accepted that social media is mostly absurd, I use FB to keep up with old friends, and share short stories from my life that I think might lighten your day. This will be neither short nor light. Many of you know that I was raised in a church. That it was, in fact, very important to me. If you knew me then, I probably gave you communion, or taught your children, or prayed and sang alongside you every Sunday. I've become mostly a holiday churchgoer these days, but my faith isn't held in those walls, and I'm nothing but thankful for my time there. Many of you know that I'm gay. This is also very important to me. I have the somewhat unique experience of not struggling between my faith and my sexuality. I've always been gay. I've always believed in God. In my own church I never heard hate. I came out to my pastor before I did to my parents. I certainly never heard bigotry at home. I knew it was out there, but, like anything scary, I tucked it away until I was stronger. Regarding the CA ballot intiative, Sodomite Suppression Act, which states: "Seeing that it is better that offenders should die rather than that all of us should be killed by God's just wrath against us for the folly of tolerating-wickedness in our midst, the People of California wisely command, in the fear of God, that any person who willingly touches another person of the same gender for purposes of sexual gratification be put to death by bullets to the head or by any other convenient method." And, Family Research Council president Tony Perkin's veiled call for violence if the Supreme Court clears the way for national marriage equality. I have this to say: Get out of the way. I can read these things, as an adult, and know that there will never be a law that allows you to kill a group of people who have found their voice. I know, as a married man, that society doesn't fall apart when we pay our taxes, and save for the future, and dream for our daughter. Kids hear these things though, and don't have the tools yet to figure that out. They look to you for guidance. If you choose to stand firmly on the shaky ground of Leviticus, have you ever read a bit further? Because in with me and my lot, you'll have to put the blind, people with acne, and dwarves. And women, oh my. Unclean seems to sum it up. So who will be left? After the cotton/poly blend wearers, anyone who has touched a real football, or eaten a shrimp, who's around. You? Awesome. Get a move on. If you believe that gay people are worse than terrorists. That we are the base of all that's wrong in this One Nation Under God. That we control the weather. If you believe that in our humanness we're any different from heterosexuals, then your faith has been handed to you. It hasn't been lived. Jesus, having never said a single word about homosexuality, never set out on a road that leads to hate. Humans did that. For narcissism, power, and wealth. Not for God, and certainly not for you. If you think he did, my guess is a bigoted parent, self righteous preacher, or Klan member taught you that. Could you be wrong? Would the world end if you were? Could you finally learn what forgiveness feels like? There are amazing Christians that are working for equality and inclusion. There are atheists that lift up and support their neighbor. There are buddhists that work for peace and love around the world. There are gays who work for justice, and some straight people are arm in arm with them. If you can't see the value in that. If you can't see Christ in that. Then get out of the way. The rest of us have work to do.
  5. So love is the most powerful force/energy in the universe, and the universe is also the most powerful force in the universe(greatest energy and most complexity), then the universe is just the concept and/or expression of love. And given the fractal nature of everything i can perceive, I almost have to think that our universe IS the concept of love or perhaps the actual expression of it in another universe or the multiverse? And it seems to follow that to mathmatically model the concept of love, you have to model our universe, including alllllll those parts most of us never see. Including not only itself..., but other concepts... which would seem to be their own universes. On top of that, it's conciousness divided into a myriad of patterns formed into ever more complex systems. So all is one, every consciousness is its own reincarnation when viewed from outside time. We arent different people being reincarnated... we are one consciousness living through all consciousnesses, its just silly to think of reincarnation as following linear time. My next incarnation I might exist last week for a tiny fraction of a second. Or 100,000 years from now I might exist for thousands of years. Am I certain? never.. and of course, I maintain true faith and true disbelief in synergetic harmony to the best of my abilites. I wouldn't mind a bit of feedback though. I still feel my words inadequate for describing what intuit.
  6. Presented by a Catholic Priest sermon, be love, mercy and forgiveness. I think love and forgiveness are the same and mercy needs to be changed to educate, mercy implies I got something over on you - not equal. The Catholic Priest thought mercy means be nice. Are you nice?
  7. Enjoy, try Sacrament!!! Play All... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ri-obaBZr9I http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WEyMd4qK_Nc It's Christmas time, for Clergy, in Waipahu. ...
  8. I like being a first, seems I made it here, no other Christmas 'wraps'... our first Christmas together, what do my Satanic associates say? Oh yeah, the Wise (Wo)Men!!! Merry Christmas or not... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FHNhcG9BhMw http://freethoughtblogs.com/lousycanuck/files/2012/01/BenettonJesusDevil.jpg - See any mistletoe? Christmas Carol - Jesus, from, see here... Proof - http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-as_DYauo8Mw/Tee8zhiED6I/AAAAAAAAFqU/hdsytVw-aIY/s1600/alien+jesus.jpg http://wbbh.images.worldnow.com/images/16379520_BG1.jpg
  9. The uncertainties of life and the vicissitudes of existence do not in any manner contradict the concept of the universal sovereignty of God. All evolutionary creature life is beset by certain inevitabilities. Consider the following: 1. Is courage — strength of character — desirable? Then must man be reared in an environment which necessitates grappling with hardships and reacting to disappointments. 2. Is altruism — service of one’s fellows — desirable? Then must life experience provide for encountering situations of social inequality. 3. Is hope — the grandeur of trust — desirable? Then human existence must constantly be confronted with insecurities and recurrent uncertainties. 4. Is faith — the supreme assertion of human thought — desirable? Then must the mind of man find itself in that troublesome predicament where it ever knows less than it can believe. 5. Is the love of truth and the willingness to go wherever it leads, desirable? Then must man grow up in a world where error is present and falsehood always possible. 6. Is idealism — the approaching concept of the divine — desirable? Then must man struggle in an environment of relative goodness and beauty, surroundings stimulative of the irrepressible reach for better things. 7. Is loyalty — devotion to highest duty — desirable? Then must man carry on amid the possibilities of betrayal and desertion. The valor of devotion to duty consists in the implied danger of default. 8. Is unselfishness — the spirit of self-forgetfulness — desirable? Then must mortal man live face to face with the incessant clamoring of an inescapable self for recognition and honor. Man could not dynamically choose the divine life if there were no self-life to forsake. Man could never lay saving hold on righteousness if there were no potential evil to exalt and differentiate the good by contrast. 9. Is pleasure — the satisfaction of happiness — desirable? Then must man live in a world where the alternative of pain and the likelihood of suffering are ever-present experiential possibilities. Rev. Bill
  10. "Death added nothing to the intellectual possession or to the spiritual endowment, but it did add to the experiential status the consciousness of survival."1 A Personal Philosophy of Religion An idea is only a theoretical plan for action, while a positive decision is a validated plan of action. A stereotype is a plan of action accepted without validation. The materials out of which to build a personal philosophy of religion are derived from both the inner and the environmental experience of the individual. The social status, economic conditions, educational opportunities, moral trends, institutional influences, political developments, racial tendencies, and the religious teachings of one’s time and place all become factors in the formulation of a personal philosophy of religion. Even the inherent temperament and intellectual bent markedly determine the pattern of religious philosophy. Vocation, marriage, and kindred all influence the evolution of one’s personal standards of life. A philosophy of religion evolves out of a basic growth of ideas plus experimental living as both are modified by the tendency to imitate associates. The soundness of philosophic conclusions depends on keen, honest, and discriminating thinking in connection with sensitivity to meanings and accuracy of evaluation. Moral cowards never achieve high planes of philosophic thinking; it requires courage to invade new levels of experience and to attempt the exploration of unknown realms of intellectual living. Presently new systems of values come into existence; new formulations of principles and standards are achieved; habits and ideals are reshaped; some idea of a personal God is attained, followed by enlarging concepts of relationship thereto. The great difference between a religious and a nonreligious philosophy of living consists in the nature and level of recognized values and in the object of loyalties. There are four phases in the evolution of religious philosophy: Such an experience may become merely conformative, resigned to submission to tradition and authority. Or it may be satisfied with slight attainments, just enough to stabilize the daily living, and therefore becomes early arrested on such an adventitious level. Such mortals believe in letting well enough alone. A third group progress to the level of logical intellectuality but there stagnate in consequence of cultural slavery. It is indeed pitiful to behold giant intellects held so securely within the cruel grasp of cultural bondage. It is equally pathetic to observe those who trade their cultural bondage for the materialistic fetters of a science, falsely so called. The fourth level of philosophy attains freedom from all conventional and traditional handicaps and dares to think, act, and live honestly, loyally, fearlessly, and truthfully. The acid test for any religious philosophy consists in whether or not it distinguishes between the realities of the material and the spiritual worlds while at the same moment recognizing their unification in intellectual striving and in social serving. A sound religious philosophy does not confound the things of God with the things of Caesar. Neither does it recognize the aesthetic cult of pure wonder as a substitute for religion. Philosophy transforms that primitive religion which was largely a fairy tale of conscience into a living experience in the ascending values of cosmic reality.2 I would be delighted for you to share your personal philosophy of religion/living. Peace,Rev. Bill 1 From Morontia Mota [ HERE ] 2 An excerpt from The Urantia Book. See it in its original context [ HERE ]Important: The Urantia Book is in the public domain, and the original holder of the copyright, The Urantia Foundation, has granted permission to reproduce or copy the standardized English text without permission. TIN: UF-ENG-001-World-2009-0.19.SRT
  11. Shamanism — Medicine Men and PriestsThe evolution of religious observances progressed from placation, avoidance, exorcism, coercion, conciliation, and propitiation to sacrifice, atonement, and redemption. The technique of religious ritual passed from the forms of the primitive cult through fetishes to magic and miracles; and as ritual became more complex in response to man’s increasingly complex concept of the supermaterial realms, it was inevitably dominated by medicine men, shamans, and priests. In the advancing concepts of primitive man the spirit world was eventually regarded as being unresponsive to the ordinary mortal. Only the exceptional among humans could catch the ear of the gods; only the extraordinary man or woman would be heard by the spirits. Religion thus enters upon a new phase, a stage wherein it gradually becomes secondhanded; always does a medicine man, a shaman, or a priest intervene between the religionist and the object of worship. And today most of our systems of organized religious belief are passing through this level of evolutionary development. Evolutionary religion is born of a simple and all-powerful fear, the fear which surges through the human mind when confronted with the unknown, the inexplicable, and the incomprehensible. Religion eventually achieves the profoundly simple realization of an all-powerful love, the love which sweeps irresistibly through the human soul when awakened to the conception of the limitless affection of the Universal Father for the sons of the universe. But in between the beginning and the consummation of religious evolution, there intervene the long ages of the shamans, who presume to stand between man and God as intermediaries, interpreters, and intercessors. How does your belief system include or exclude the medicine man, shaman, or priest? Should religion be secondhanded? In your belief system, is there someone who acts as an intermediary, interpreter, and/or intercessor? What about intercessory prayer??? Does the God of your belief system need to be coaxed into loving and helping you and/or others??? In your opinion, did the Judeo-Christian God of Love really NEED Jesus of Nazareth to be crucified as a SACRIFICE to convince him not to PUNISH humanity for the SINS of Adam and Eve, or is the typical Christian position/teaching regarding the reasons for the betrayal and execution of Christ a misunderstanding and misinterpretation of God and His will??? What do YOU think??? Peace, Rev. Bill
  12. So for Halloween I participated in a blog party. Our mission was to create a short story. I decided on a dragon love story for my entry. You can read it on my blog. I hope you enjoy! Dragon Love