Appendix A: My Summary Response to Two Christian Missionaries
By Winston Wu
Note: In response to some long discussions I had with two Christian missionary friends (who do not wish to be named here), I wrote up the following summary response to them, which states their claims and my responses/objections in an attempt to narrow down our discussion to the bottom line impasse points. If you find it useful, you can send it to other Christians who are preaching to you as well, so you can get right to the bottom line issues they can’t answer. (Or you may print out or email my Anti-Evangelism Tract or Summary of Christian Circular Arguments and Assumptions Debunked) Below the outline is a response by FaithRada, a fascinating mystic I know.
Purpose: The reason I feel compelled to write this outline summary and response of our discussions because 1) I constantly get interrupted during my presentation to you two, to the point that I cannot even complete one point or argument among several that I usually have. Therefore I hope this outline will lay out my response and the problems I see to your claims point by point. 2) I hope that this outline will help us all see the big picture, and identify the core root of our differences, so we do not continue in endless fruitless debate. This outline below details 2 major areas that we’ve been discussing: 1) the testimonials of changed lives of born again Christians, and 2) huge assumptions regarding Salvation and the Bible.
Conflict of purpose of our discussion: Let me note first that one main problem I have identified in our discussions is we have a conflict of purpose. I get the impression that this is not an open discussion where we listen to each other’s arguments and ideas, and respond to them. You two do not seem interested in hearing or considering my arguments and views. I get the impression that to you, our whole discussion is all about this “truth” from the Bible, and whether I am willing to come to terms with it. You do not seem to be willing to consider that you may be wrong or that I may be correct, nor do you wish to hear and examine my reasons, arguments, and evidence. This represents a conflict of purpose, motive, perception, and mentality between us in our discussions.
I. Your claims vs. My responses and objections
A. Your claim: Testimony of changed lives – You argue that the many wonderful beautiful inspiring testimonials of changed lives of born again Christians proves the validity of their faith.
B. Related claim: Life without Christ is empty, and no non-Christian is truly happy, no matter what they have in life.
C. Related claim: Even if I got all the things I want in this world/life, it wouldn’t make me truly happy but would leave me empty.
II. Assumptions you have regarding Salvation and the Bible we are in disagreement on
A. All people are wicked sinners and destined to spend an eternity in hell unless they receive Christ as their Savior.
B. The Bible is the complete infallible inerrant word of God.
C. A is true because of B (e.g. “The Bible says so”) and everything that doesn’t fit in with the two assumptions above is false and/or of Satan.
Based on the above summary outline of your claims, my responses, objections, and identification of core problems, I conclude that the core problems I described are unanswerable and mark an impasse point in our discussions, as you two would most likely repeat the same claims in response to them. Though both of your are extremely fervent in your beliefs, I hope you can open your minds to try to understand my objections. In addition to the arguments and objections I present above, there are many more in my treatise addressing all major Christian Evangelical arguments at www.debunkingskeptics.com/DebunkingChristians/Contents.htm. Thank you for your time and attention to my summary response outline.
Mystic FaithRada Comments on My Summary Response to Two Christian Missionaries
In response to the summary response outline above, an out-of-this-world mystic on my list named FaithRada wrote this eloquent, impressive, and enlightening analysis of them and the meaning of true “Christ Consciousness”. It’s definitely worth reading and will stretch your mind to new heights!
Winston: ....( to Missionaries)
I get the impression that this is not an open discussion where we listen to each other’s arguments and ideas, and respond to them. You two do not seem interested in hearing or considering my arguments and views. I get the impression that to you, our whole discussion is all about this “truth” from the Bible, and whether I am willing to come to terms with it. You do not seem to be willing to consider that you may be wrong or that I may be correct, nor do you wish to hear and examine my reasons, arguments, and evidence. >>
Having been in this type of "deadlock" many times I finally began to look deeper .. into why some ARE so "deadlocked" in their particular chosen "Beliefs" in the first place.. So I asked "God" /. Higher Self -and this is what I got back... KARMA . People are born into or seek out whatever "religion" or belief system is needed to support one's current karma.
So.. it is not as though they have a "choice" per say.... they are literally STUCK in that belief system until their karma is done there. They WILL find out later that their "mission" was not about others.. but about themselves.
Were they able to approach others with love and respect? With humility? OR... did they have to be "RIGHT" and become arrogant in their "supposed" knowledge? Judging themselves as right and the others as wrong?
I have met Christians that were so sweet and loving.. who really tried to align with the inner Love that Jesus spoke of, and I have also met the ones who felt that their own intellectual understanding of the scriptures was "where it was at".... Ironically "God", Supreme Consciousness, does not even CARE what belief system one holds AS LONG AS ONE HAS A LOVING NATURE.
Eventually, (though probably not in this life) they will understand what it means to be REALLY "Born Again". Physical death does not bring this kind of knowledge.
*** Some really do know.. but it is NOT a normal knowing of the mind, it is something MUCH more. MOST are only talking about a surface shift, which is fine in its own right .. but NOT the ultimate KNOWING. To be truly BORN Again means to "die into" the Ultimate Reality.. to recognize that there is nothing here BUT God... and we are ALL THAT, (though in a contracted mode) This is the ONE death Jesus references and not the physical death.. which is not that big a deal, when you finally see what that is about.
Someone of a religious mind set.. (any religion, it does not matter) , who is not truly "Born Again" or, had their own dormant inner Divinity Fully Awakened by Grace, will hear this only as some blasphemous deranged statement.. not yet able to perceive what is actually being suggested here. It is NOT an intellectual knowing. If one THINKS they know.. they do not know. THINKing belongs to duality. It is a process of the finite mind. whereas "God" reveals IT's TOTAL SELF within the NON dual state.. beyond mind. To have that kind of Knowing one must BECOME one with THAT which is.
It is one thing to know there is (a) God... and that is wonderful to be sure, still, most people hold that ONLY as a belief. Yet, to many .... knowing there is God ... is what THEY mean by being "Born Again".. But ... it is quite another thing to know there is ONLY God.... everywhere... manifesting AS everything and everyone here. To have Jesus' knowledge.. to know YOU yourself ARE the Christ...and that there is ONLY The Christ (or Pure Consciousness) .... THAT is being FULLY Born Again. In that moment you REALIZE that you have never BEEN Born NOR do you EVER DIE. At that point you don't bother trying to change someone's religion because you see ALL Religions as your own SELF. Truly God does not care.. only people who still have some work to do really think the beliefs of others matters to God. But it DOES matter to us !, since it is our own limited minds that keep us from fully knowing God.. our own True SELF.
A true 'born again' would not say ANY religion or concept of God was wrong... they would only tell you that it is incomplete, as it must be to the finite mind.
Without Grace.. no shift. Jesus was not simply about heaven.. that was just an aside, for those not yet ready to really "Die" yet. Jesus' main purpose here,as with any who come in Christ Consciousness, was/is about becoming One with THAT.
Win, you could suggest that they seek out the living Christ... HERE AND NOW. It is manifest for those with the eyes to see. It has NEVER left us. It has always been closer to us than our own breath.
What one NEEDS is to have their own Divine inner energy awakened.. and then they can at least have a chance of understanding the Christ's words from the most pure perspective, with the blockages of finite mind removed. THAT is the power of Grace. But.. that takes incredibly good karma. (karma being a topic which is mostly misunderstood by the Western mind,and even many in the "Eastern" philosophies.)
In the Bible, "Thomas" had excellent karma.... Peter? ... he needed a little more work. His anger and his jealousy blocked the deeper meaning of Jesus' teachings from his mind and that is true for all humanity to this day to one degree or another.
Without LOVE ....born of humility and respect for the Divine, that exists within, and as all living beings (and also all inanimate objects), one may HEAR the words, but those words will not reveal their inner truth to them.
So.. if you listen to Peter's words with mundane ears.. you get ONLY what he got... (not enough to Die into The Supreme One totally.) if you listen to THOMAS .. the WAY Thomas listened.. then you get it all. For Peter ... Jesus became a religion. For Thomas ... he became One With Jesus, he achieved Godhood.
Think back on your own experiences with religion. You yourself were SO adamant at one point yes? BUT then, at some point you had a "shift"... you saw things differently.. WHY? Because.... that karma was done.
True, we then move on to different karma,.. but NOT until our current karma is done.
THINK we have free
choice in these matters..
but not so, not *directly anyway In
the same way .. you are going through your own karma right now by
NEED to chase "bodies" around
* ( free will is a very complex and esoteric topic. It is real yet it is not real)
Eventually one learns how to get off the roller coaster all together.. but apparently you are not ready for that yet. Sez La Vie.
Eventually they will evolve into a higher understanding.. but remember we ARE playing in eternity here. Supreme Consciousness has plenty of time to play out all the scenarios.
My suggestion? Just send them blessings and move on, because they really cannot "hear" you.
You could contemplate this though.. Most, if not all meetings are karmic in nature. So they may have something to offer you.. though it will probably NOT be what they think it is. You COULD use them as a "mirror" for your own way of being in the world right now. Different topic, different level.. but the same scenario at work. Everyone has something to teach us, if we can look deeply enough into it.
It is said that if we are continually experiencing the same kind of scenarios over and over again, it is because we have not yet learned that lesson. Once we DO learn, then that issue does not come back and we get to "move on". When you think about it, it sort of makes sense.
• The problem: The first problem is that these cases do automatically mean that all the doctrines of your faith and the Bible are all true. Nor do they erase all other similar testimonials of other religions contrary to your own.>>
FR ~ Seems only logical .. Until you see how one's karma can blocking them from that viewpoint right now.
# 2: The second problem is that I could
EASILY bring up the SAME kind evidence of changed lives and
other belief systems, religions, pop psychology fads, self-help groups,
Alcoholics Anonymous groups, New Age sects, Wiccans,
even from Atheists/Agnostics, etc. However, just because
testimonials are true and sincere does not mean each of those belief
and practices are right for everyone. The same goes for your
2. Your response: Your response to the above is that these same testimonials of changed lives in other religions/belief systems mean nothing if they are not based on the Bible, and that Satan could be behind them because he can appear as an angel of light and is the father of lies.>>
Ahhh The Satan ploy. When in doubt go find Satan to help you out :0
But again, remember.. they CANNOT yet accept what you suggest since their Karma is blocking them from what should be obvious.
When someone is working from Belief, or even from subjective knowing, as opposed to Transcendent Knowing, they will never fully grasp that there is a valid, albeit LIMITED view, to ALL perspectives.
Until we move INTO the MIND of God.. there can be no REAL Divine or transcendent Knowing,where Supreme Consciousness holds ALL perspectives as ITs own. Not judging any of it but simply enjoying that limited perspective.
One who is still contracted and has not entered the supreme "Mind of God" will only hear statements of Divine Knowledge as just some other mundane perspective of the mind.. and ASSUME the speaker is simply falling into their own trap and coming from subjective mind. But that may not be the case at all. They may have received Transcendent Knowledge. THIS is True revelation. This was the reality of the Transcendentalists such as Thoreau and Emerson and Alcott etc. NO one else can really understand them until they become ONE with THEM. It certainly IS baffling. .. but that is also a part of the Game God plays. As "HE" hides right in front of His own SELF.
Ultimately people HEAR from where THEY are, and not necessarily from the state where the speaker is. Evolution of soul is real ... the Good news is .... it's as long a journey as we chose it to be. The Bad news is..... it's as long a journey that we chose it to be.
Back to the point... it is foolish for anyone to THINK they can just read legitimate Divine Scripture from any True path and THINK they understand it. The writer MUST be Divinely inspired PLUS the READER ALSO MUST be Divinely Inspired. They must BOTH occupy the same state of Grace. It is rare that they are.
Win to Missionaries <<• The problem:
The problem and what you don’t get is that claiming that Satan is behind the testimonials of other religions/spiritual practices DOES NOT erase or invalidate them. You seem to think that claiming that Satan is behind them is some kind of a “magic eraser” that can delete all contrary evidence! Not only is it a total cop out, but it’s insulting to others as well. How would you feel and how would you like it if I used the “Satan is behind it” explanation to explain away your evidence of Christian testimonials too?>>
If we think of Satan as being that state of incredible contraction of mind, then we can say that Satan is indeed blinding them from their own Divine Inner Truth. Again.. karma. The "Christ" or pure Consciousness, through those MOST Pure Beings such as Jesus, wants all of humanity to realize their full potential.
By choosing to give "Satan" oppositional Power to "God" ... people then in fact create that reality. Now suddenly God becomes one of two powers ..... and the power play of the MIND begins.
The fact is .. there is only ONE Power in this Universe... and it is God, the ultimate reality. There is no "other" but Supreme Consciousness anywhere... choosing to manifest as ALL this. But the unawakened dualistic mind cannot deal with this so our sense of separateness from the Divine, and from each other continues as a reality for us.
The minute you KNOW God (from God's perspective) ( and not just of God) , you KNOW , beyond the finite minds' ability to know that there is no room for a "Satan" in God's ultimate reality. ... just in our own. Will "Satan" , or evil, be REAL for you if duality is all you know? Of course.. because the finite mind judges. It sees only good VS Bad where there is ULTIMATELY only total perfection everywhere.
It says.. this is Good, but that is Bad. That is all the play of the mind.
To a mind who sets itself ONLY on God, the reality of Evil cannot enter there. But first that mind must RECOGNIZE what God actually is. THAT is the problem.. and it is a HUGE one.
When Grace comes, of its own accord, you get to know.. there is only God's perfection everywhere. Until then... Satan can ruin a perfectly nice day : (
claim: Life without Christ is empty, and no
non-Christian is truly happy, no matter what they have in life.
1. My response: I can agree with your argument above to a certain point. Based on my behavior and life patterns, it can be argued that my life is empty to a point.
• The problem: The problem is that even if we conclude that my life is empty and unsatisfying, it doesn’t mean that the Christian faith is the answer that would satisfy my life, ...>>
FR ~ Your point is absolutely valid However it can only be readily known to these Fundamentalist if God decides to reveal to them that "HE" really does not care HOW you Get it .. as long as you Get it.
Grace does NOR differentiate and to believe it does is to not understand Grace OR GOD ( same thing) at all.
works BEST through a
pure and loving heart which is NOT bogged down with dogmatic belief
ANY religion. Throw it all out ..ALL but the LOVE, and you
likely discover the
That being said .. the soul still NEEDS to go through different stages of evolving as a spiritual entity Picture for a moment Einstein explaining the Theory of relativity to a chicken ... It may be true.. but it is certainly wasted on the chicken. The finite mind is a lot like that compared to Truth Absolute... only with a MUCH bigger gap. :0
So.... they are where they NEED to be.. as are you Win. The question becomes... Who is the better off????? That's easy... the ONE with the MOST LOVE in their hearts. The intellect runs a far distant second here.
The intellect LIKES to "figure it all out", to understand. But the Supreme ONE cannot BE understood by nor attained by the workings of the intellect. The minute one starts arguing scripture etc... they have lost focus on what is really important. Scripture will REMAIN DEAD..misunderstood, no matter how valid it is... for a heart that cannot GIVE and RECEIVE with the recognition that ALL is Divine.
Learn to LOVE and Supreme Consciousness WILL take care of everything else.
One who is
walks through the
2. Your response: Your response to this would be that if I had been truly born again of the Holy Spirit, I would have been happy, fulfilled and changed in a way that I could never deconvert.>>
Well, that is sort of true.. because to be Born Again" is to see ones self thought God's eyes. At that point ALL religions are seen as ONE. There is nothing to "deconvert" to... All is God. Proclaiming ones self a Christian and saying the words "I accept Jesus" means nothing until you RECOGNIZE who YOU are. The Godhead. Otherwise it is just the ego telling itself it is surrendering to its own contracted concept of God.
I was an Agnostic and God bestowed IT"s Grace on me. Awakening me to my own Divine Nature. which is the SAME in ALL. Until that moment I had no idea who Jesus REALLY was. NOR who I was. Such knowledge is truly BEYOND the mind's capacity to know, via the intellect alone.
btw.. Supreme Consciousness, That which is the ONE ... is far more than JUST "Creator". That is simply ONE of its aspects. There are more... more than finite mind can even begin to fathom.
On Surrender. Jesus would tell you ... Whatever one THINKS Surrender is... once you have finally achieved THAT you see that it was NONE of the things you EVER thought it was. That moment is saved for God and God alone and cannot be talked about, understood or experienced by the mind.
3. My response: You can say that if you wish, but I was once as fervent and zealous as you were, as were many ex-Christians. Let me give you some examples. I was so zealous that I once almost wrote Bible verses on the chalk board of my mom’s Buddhist study center. In high school, I even risked getting physically attacked by Muslim students, by attempting to witness to them. One time in an Art History class, after a lecture on Christian history, I gave the teacher some Christian gospel tracts to inform him of the true story of Jesus, to which the next day, he politely handed them back to me saying that he wasn’t the right person for me to be witnessing to. I felt embarrassed going out on a limb like that, but I thought I was doing the right thing.>>
AAhhh ... consider this.. IF you felt embarrassed AT THAT POINT IN TIME.. then you did not, for whatever reason, accept it as fully REAL.. even back then. Truth is never embarrassed. Embarrassment is the realm of the impure ego.
Anyway.. their own fervor and zealousness is their own karma playing out. You had your karma, and they have theirs. The point is to get beyond all that and simply learn to come from a place of Love... respecting the idea that God may indeed have a number of surprises in store for us on this long journey home.... to a place we NEVER left :) Bottom line here is.. Do not judge any of it... Why should you ? God doesn't. We are all simply living God's play. We are NOT in charge here. God is. So just practice loving.... in every moment see how you might add LOVE to that moment and you WILL change that experience for the better.
This earth plane is the classroom for our souls. God is NOT some harsh taskmaster , it is our own minds that beat on us. Divine Consciousness simply Loves. and the interactive ASPECT of that Divine Love guides and gives us what we need... which is rarely what we THINK we want. :( We should learn to listen for that inner voice which is always with all of us, forsaking none. It is we who forsake by not loving.
• Problem # 2: Many non-Christians who don’t share your beliefs, do claim and do have generally happy and fulfilling lives. Though you don’t believe them and deny it, that does not make these other testimonials untrue or erase them.>>
FR ~ Well think about itWinston .. What does it matter if they cannot yet recognize for themselves, that another is already walking in the full Grace of God, bathed in the Bliss of Divine Unconditional love WITHOUT the need for religion?
That is for the Awakened to KNOW and the unawakened to find out.
If one's religion can teach them about conditional love, fine, that's a good start, but more often than not religion sadly teaches fear .. the very thing that holds us in bondage!
You note I said without the need for religion, but I did not say.. without the need for GRACE. Grace is essential, but Grace has little if nothing to do with religion.. it has everything to do with the purity of one's own "heart" and God's willingness to capture our hearts and awaken us to The Supreme Reality within.... That You and God are ONE.
This is UNLIMITED Compassion. This is how God really works.
For those who believe God favors their approach over others of pure heart ... they have an amazing surprise in store. Wait until they see that Agnostics,Jews, Moslems, Buddhists, Hindus, Jains, etc. even Atheists have found a way to jump into the Heart of God.. ahead of them!!! ..... Ohh that moment will be SO humbling...and they will know. Not "in" time.. but Outside of Time. Where all TRUE Knowing takes place.
claim: Even if I got all the things I want
in this world/life, it wouldn’t make me truly happy but would
leave me empty.
1. My response: I only agree with that partially. I honestly feel that if I got all the things I wanted in life, I would be much happier than I am now. Of course, I wouldn’t be perfectly happy 24 hours a day, for life is not like that and is cyclical in nature. But the bottom line is that I would be MUCH happier in general if I got what I wanted in life, than if I didn’t.>>
Your bottom line unfortunately is totally NOT So. To get what we WANT in this life is an incredible curse. Each life is designed to give us exactly the experiences we need in order to Grow spiritually. The GOAL here is to be not just "happy" but to be in total Supreme BLISS.. all the time. You have not even glimpsed this State yet, or you would not be foolish enough to make such a statement.
In spiritual terms here... you are "selling your soul for a HOT DOG!." When one finally is able to 'TOUCH THE FACE OF GOD' .. they KNOW that everything in this mundane world is like a hell in comparison. "Stuff" just distracts us from the real goal and becomes a burden. It is only when we let EVERYTHING GO.. that we RECEIVE everything.&nbs