Cheshire Cat

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    Distinctive mischievous grin
  1. The Gods and Magic

    Which category do you belong to?
  2. The Gods and Magic

    Yes! There are plenty of Vaishnavas, Shaivas, Shaktas ... and the most famous Brahmasnavas sadhus going there everyday They all pray to Brahma!
  3. The Gods and Magic

    Orthopraxis is a technical term that defines a religion in which the "praxis" (rituals, feasts, etc...) are the elements that qualify the adherent to the faith. For example, you can find extremely divergent belief systems in India (Especially if you jump from southern india to northern India), to the point that you may think to have found different religions. But what makes them all "hindus" are their practices, their rituals, the praxis
  4. The Gods and Magic

    It's compulsory to actually read the bible in order to be able to sustain a discussion on it
  5. The Gods and Magic

    I believe that he was a man. People made him the Only begotten son of God in different stages.
  6. The Gods and Magic

    It's somehow traditional in judaism to have dozens of different opinions on a certain matter. It's significant that the Bible talks about a number of civilizations before they were actually discovered and studied by archeology... but there are also six-fingered giants, angels, flying machines,etc... So, in the story of Moses where God plays a central role and manifests a number of unexplainable phenonena (starting from the "kavod"), you're somehow forced to either take the all story literally as it is or to assume that it's a myth. A scientific researcher, when presented with a character like Moses who's tied so strongly with the supernatural that it's impossible to artificially remove the unexplainable from him, he may tend to believe that he was not a real person... and that the story was made up. But I think that he was real, along with the supernatural and the origins of monolatry. Yes... and no. In judaism, orthopraxis is certainly much more significant than in christianity. Sometimes, the love and devotion to a saint may go beyond certain limits, starting to resemble too strongly like a form of idolatry. I don't want to go into further details. Christianity (unlike hinduism) is an orthodoxy, meaning that you're requested to adhere to certain articles of faith. One of those articles attempt to define the nature of God (on a more sophisticated level than creating an idol with 3 faces)... and this single matter caused dozens of schisms in history... but on a practical level, the worshiper pray to either Jesus or to God and they have the same role and function on this practical level, like a God with two names. It's not like calling Saint Anthony for healing a disease and Saint Michael for protection. Hinduism is different. Firstly, nobody prays to Bhrama. Secondly, he's a god at the same level with the others... and thirdly, even if you expand the trinitarian concept to Vishnu, Bhrama and Shiva, you'll notice that they're not as interchangeables in worship as Jesus and God. Islam is not baha'i. There are 3 categories of beings plus God that are relevant for human beings : angels, djinns and other men. Amongst mankind there are 5 categories : messengers, prophets, believers, disbelievers and apostates. These five categories constitutes real "levels" of humanity. When I say that certain sects consider a particular messenger to be created directly from the light of God, I'm pointing out that a 4th special category of beings appears, above humans and angels... and that messenger is ascending the ranks, just like Jesus did: he was a man, then son of god, then god himself.
  7. The Gods and Magic

    ... and a fake magician has not read Darwin's book and the entities think that he's not competent enough to evolve them.
  8. The Gods and Magic

    Regarding monotheism, there are many shades. As usual, the world is not black & white. For example, although there are historians who say that the jews stepped in and out of monotheism at multiple times, we could assume that Prophet Moses established a pure monotheistic faith in the beginning and that it had to be restored many times in history, starting from the golden calf incident. There are many currents in judaism, some of them are religious. Sometimes, it's a pure monotheism... sometimes there are some devotions to saints. Apostolic christianity has a peculiar connotation: the idea (present somewhere in St. Paul literature. I can't quote atm) that christians can become like gods after the resurrection. And sometimes, even before through special merits of martyrdom. So, after an original reset of the entire pantheon and the setting of a pure monotheism in the beginning, the christians started to refill the ranks of minor gods with... saints. But these saints were originally human beings and any christian can strive to join their ranks. At the end of times, everyone will be either a saint or a damned... and there will be a pure monotheism again. Also, they constitute the "triumphant church", an assembly of elevated soul and the "militant church" can ask for their assistance. Thus, paving the way for various devotions. There are other currents in christianity that reject devotion to saints and tend to be more "monotheistic" in nature, although the idea of the Trinity might be interpreted like "a plurality of gods" from the outside. Islam tends to be more strictly monotheistic, but there are many currents that (for example) tend to elevate Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) above the state of a human being, for example teaching that he was created from the light of God and that the entire creation was made for him. In time, they'll turn him into a Jesus. Also, devotion to saints is widespread in certain areas. Again, there are many shades here as well. In conclusion, I believe that what makes those faith monotheistic is the idea of a supreme God that stands above the creation and the worship of him alone. The shades are when people pray to other beings, but when those beings are understood to be his creation and devoted to him alone, I think that the spirit of monotheism is somehow preserved.
  9. The Gods and Magic

    I generally admire people who only hold to true concepts.
  10. Post-covid sleep disorder

    Yes, people market yoga nidra on the same line... but it doesn't work for me.
  11. Post-covid sleep disorder

    It's not really about relaxation as I can relax deep enough to sleep on the ground if I want to... but not between 3 am and 5 am. Thank you
  12. Post-covid sleep disorder

  13. Post-covid sleep disorder

    I'm not sure if it's 100% related to covid, but it's more than a year that I wake up around 3 AM, can't fall asleep again until around 5 AM. I can't remember the last time that I had a full night of sleep. I think it's the time period of the lung meridian. What could I do? Thanks
  14. The Gods and Magic

    The old and traditional concept of Magic -in the West and in the middle east- used to be the one in which the magician receives the assistance of spiritual beings to accomplish various works (divination, healing, separate husband and wife, kill, change the weather, etc...). Very simple: human beings have little power while spirits are very powerfull. Seek their help, pay with various offerings and maybe some vows... and all of your Magic depends 100% on the assistance of Spiritual beings. And it was so until very recent times when yogic, tantric and psychology influences gradually changed this paradigm, but that's offtopic. BTW, the advent of monotheism faced the old concept of Magic with the new idea of worshipping God and making offerings (and requests) to Him alone. It was not acceptable to worship spirits to get magical abilities. So, magic was plainly banned in the old testament. But people are smart and they came up with a new idea: theurgy ... which is Magic performed with God's permission and power. The legend of Solomon is that of a king that was granted by God the power to control djinns: here's the trick. The idea developed trough the centuries in jewish culture and early christians were absolutely in love with the idea of controlling demons in the name of Jesus (see Celsius) either for curing sickness with exorcisms (which remained in mainstream religion) or wealth, protection, etc... but not divination as prophecy was believed to come directly from the holy spirit. See the story of Simon Magus, Simon the magician who tried to buy the power of the Holy Spirit. In time, the church banned magic again and the old practices of controlling demons in the name of Jesus were forgotten and lost. So, magicians had to either copy jewish magic or manipulate ortodhox christian practices to come up with satanic magic (like the black mass, etc...). In the islamic traditions, magic was banned as well by God in the Qu'ran. There are many interesting stories like the one of Harut and Marut, the angels of magic... the tradition of Sulayman and the divine names given to Adam, etc... Anyway, islamic magicians used the concept of theurgy as well and magic flourished. We've all heard of Al Buni, his Shem ul ma'arif, djinn magic, etc... The question is: does God allow theurgy? Or is it in the same category of the magic that he banned?
  15. The Gods and Magic

    There is only one God... and He generally forbids magic.