Friday, July 30, 2004

John Kerry, Theosophist & Monad.

In last night’s speech, Kerry said, "She [his mother] gave me her passion for the environment. She taught me to see trees as the cathedrals of nature."

The complete and correct quote is: "I believe in the cosmos. All of us are linked to the cosmos. Look at the sun: If there is no sun, then we cannot exist. So nature is my god. To me, nature is sacred; trees are my temples and forests are my cathedrals. Being at one with nature." ---- Mikhail Gorbachev (1990)

I guess with John just discovering his Jewish roots during the primary season, he can be forgiven for using "temple" and "cathedral" interchangeably.

John Muir also spoke of trees and cathedrals, but in a slightly more arrogant sense. Muir held that forests were God’s places of sanctuary, and with trees getting cut down to build cathedrals, it should be no surprise that we were becoming a nation further and further from God. Kinda undercuts the whole "man being granted dominion" theme of the first couple of chapters of Genesis.

On one end of generally recognized (and recognizable) religion, Pantheism is often grouped with Hinduism – an amalgamation of Gods leading us towards peaceful coexistence (read – the French are our friends (insert mantra here). Pantheism also equates God with nature. It is Panentheism that states that God is greater than nature.

On the other end is the Liberal Catholic Church, a group that bases it form of Christianity on theosophy. 'Theosophy' refers to a body of belief which holds that all religions are attempts by man to ascertain "the Divine," and as such each religion has a portion of the truth.

This is consistent with a man who at once believes life begins at conception, yet allows woman to choose to end that life up until the moment the child has been delivered. It is consistent with a man who can vote for and against the same thing at the same time. Theosophy, then, is a religion that allows the nuances of Kerry to be glorified.

To explore theosophy further, and thereby to better understand Kerry, here are a couple of tenets of the faith: Reincarnation, Karma, and Universal Brotherhood.

Universal Brotherhood? Every thing of whatever kind is from one divine source. All things are 'monads' in reality. All monads potentially possess the same principles and their forms and natures are an expression of their present consciousness level.

We are all one with everything – our fellow humans, our cats, that tree in the back yard (Woody Allen said that only God can make a tree because it is so hard to get the bark on), and that former tree now in the fireplace (now I understand why I get warmed by fire (empathy) and often stare at the flames (car-wreck effect)).

Liberals. Theosophists. Monads. It all makes sense now.

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