Mark Booth, Secret History Includes Angels and Demons |396|

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Mark Booth, Secret History Includes Angels and Demons |396|
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Mark Booth’s view of our secret history looks way beyond churchy Christianity.


photo by: Skeptiko
Alex Tsakiris:
Today we welcome Mark Booth to Skeptiko. Mark is probably best known as the author of The Secret History of the World, an international bestseller from 2008, that really changed the way we think and talk about esoteric wisdom, secret societies, mystery schools, and it was also a book, I think, that has played a part in weakening the grip of this kind of soul-crushing, scientific materialism that we talk about so much on this show.

Mark, it’s great to have you here, thank so much for joining me.

Mark Booth: I’m so pleased to be on your show, I admire it enormously and I admire your cast of mind. You’re curious about everything, but you don’t want to be stupid, and I think, if there is a God, he doesn’t want us to be stupid. So, that’s a very sensible attitude to take.

Alex Tsakiris: Right-on to that, and in that spirit, I really want to have, what I like to call a level-3 kind of discussion here because level-1 is, as our culture would say, “Why would you listen to Mark Booth? I mean, that’s just ridiculous, don’t even pay any attention.” Then, level-2 is the people who just admire and so greatly are inspired by your work, as they should be, and say, “Yes, we must believe everything that Mark says.” Then, it’s level-3, that we don’t have enough of, where it says, “Gee, this a wonderful dialogue to engage in.”

Here is someone I truly believe is a hero, to have stepped forward and fought these tremendous cultural forces that you just have stacked yourself against, but let’s dig into it a little bit further. That’s my speech, that’s where we’re going to go, so if any time you think I’m poking you too hard, let me know. We need to have that next level of discussion.
 
#2
Alex's question at the end of the podcast:

Does Mark Booth get the big picture right (good vs evil, angels vs demons)? What's the counter argument? Who would you like to see come on the show to put that argument?
 
#3
Does Mark Booth get the big picture right (good vs evil, angels vs demons)? What's the counter argument? Who would you like to see come on the show to put that argument?

I don't really know what Mark Booth's viewpoint is because I haven't read any of his books and this interview could do no more than very sketchily cover it. Hence no point discussing what he has to say because he didn't have time to say much, and what he did say is open to interpretation based on my own current viewpoint.

So unless I read some of his material, I can't muster a counter argument (if indeed I would want to counter it), and I don't really have an idea who could counter him.

I don't know if this interview could have gone differently and been given a lot more time than it was. Maybe Alex was pushed for time, or they'd agreed in advance how much time to spend, but whatever, it wasn't enough for me to make informed comments at this point. Which is a pity, because Booth sounds like an interesting fellow and I'd have liked to have gotten more to grips with his view.

I guess my first step will be to download the Kindle sampler of his previous, non-illustrated version of The Secret History of the World and decide whether it's worthwhile buying it. I may post more after I've read the sampler.
 
#4
Oh, and by the way, I was a little puzzled that Booth spoke approvingly of Pete Townshend and his spirituality, when the latter was placed on the British sex offenders register for five years for downloading child pornography, claiming he did it "to prove that British banks were complicit in channelling the profits from pedophile rings".

I'm glad to hear that Booth disapproves of child abuse, but what's with the Pete Townshend thing? Who knows, maybe he believes Townshend, but it does kind of make me a little circumspect.
 
#5
Look forward to listening to the show.

In the mean time.....

I don't really know what Mark Booth's viewpoint is because I haven't read any of his books and this interview could do no more than very sketchily cover it. Hence no point discussing what he has to say because he didn't have time to say much, and what he did say is open to interpretation based on my own current viewpoint.
Well, philosophically Mr. Booth has stated he's an idealist. As for the rest, I think he feels history has been shaped by non-physical forces engaged in something of a power struggle and that this struggle is broadly a part of the unfolding of existence. It strikes me as somewhat biblical in a way.

The Secret History is history (going back to creation) as seen through the views of various esoteric schools of thought (freemasonry, rosicrucianism, etc.).

His follow-up book, The Sacred History, is an examination of non-physical beings' interventions in history, starting with myth and moving on to Plato's daemon, messages from angels, and other historically significant contacts with the non-physical (in situations ranging from war to science).

Personally, I preferred the Sacred History, and it's the book I suggest people read.

Perhaps we could summarise his view thus: The non-physical (as in beings) has had a huge effect on the course of human history.

But I haven't read either book for a while..... so, I hope I'm not drastically misrepresenting things.

On the Townsend issue: I know Mr. Booth has edited a number of celebrity autobiographies, so, maybe he met Townsend in a professional capacity, got to know him, and takes his story, for whatever reason, at face value. Of course, I have no idea, obviously.
 
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#6
Does Mark Booth get the big picture right (good vs evil, angels vs demons)? What's the counter argument? Who would you like to see come on the show to put that argument?
I want Mark Booth back, because he scarcely said a damned thing. Alex, this chat drove me nuts. I have had enough exposure to know that he has a decent enough POV. I am not sure there is a counter argument that is worth bothering with - for the very simple reason that either you know about this stuff or you don't.

You can quibble about terminology - what is 'good' and what is 'evil' (that's a discussion worth having). You can demand to know what an angel is and what demon is. But the ecology of the divine really isn't subject to any serious debate among those who 'know'. Ergo, for me, a 'counter argument' is a waste of time. Yes, I get the idea that we should be open to other POVs. But here? No.

I thought Mark made a telling point about 'magicians' engaged in practice for self-interest. I have just finished reading The Coddling of the American Mind in which Solzhenitsyn was quoted, saying (word to the effect) that the line between good and evil runs through the centre of the human heart. On what side of the line are we on? How do we know when we cross it? Answers to those questions are not as self-evident as we like to think (the world would be a very different place if they were). Dom we need a counter argument here? I don't think so.

Are there angels and demons? How the hell can you have an opinion on that question? Either you know they are, or you have no opinion worth listening to. You can't know they are not. The only options are (1) They are or (2) I don't know.

Here's my reasoning for this. For the most part we are not aware of angles or demons, and good thing too. Most humans will never encounter them. Of the few that do, even fewer will say they have. Of course there are those who haven't but believe they have (and that's because they have a system of belief that says all X are angels and all Y are demons) - and you have no use for those POVs, if you are smart.

I have encountered agents whose natures have been inimical and benign, and I have no desire to engage with either again. Even the benign can be terrible and dangerous. There agents are nothing like the Hollywood fantasies. They are not human, and never have been human. Mark mentioned a friend who is contact with angels. Maybe so, but my frank preference is to say they are agents who are thought to be angels. But, I suppose, we haven't decided on what we mean by angels, so who knows.

Mark said stuff I thought was very interesting, and I wished he had gone deeper. I am not being critical of Alex here. This kind of material was my bread and butter for about 20 years. I was intrigued that Mark had written a book that maybe pulled together some useful and new insights. I was keen to buy. But - can buy a hardcopy, which I don't want (I have a disability which now makes reading paper books very difficult). The kindle version is "unavailable" for sale in Australia. Why? The Audible version is available free if I sign up for a new membership, but impossible to buy otherwise. WTF?

Evidently some invisible power is intent on frustrating me. But angel or demon? No idea.

I think the good/evil and angel/demon model is useful, as a background structure (you don't want to get too serious), but what matters more than some potentially misleading and confusing counter proposition is how to make such ideas work. How do we profit from them?
 
#7
I want Mark Booth back, because he scarcely said a damned thing. Alex, this chat drove me nuts. I have had enough exposure to know that he has a decent enough POV. I am not sure there is a counter argument that is worth bothering with - for the very simple reason that either you know about this stuff or you don't.
I know exactly what you mean!

I think Alex has studied all this far more deeply than most of us, and perhaps he slips into the assumption that we all start from the same point.


These podcasts (not just the latest one) seem to have become analogous to eating a Chinese meal - you think you are listening to something interesting, but afterwards you don't feel intellectually nourished!

Take for example, the suggestion that Christ came as a sort of half way event in the history of humanity, with every BC event being mirrored by an AD event. Alex asked Mark if he believed this, and he said he did, but what the hell is it supposed to mean, and how would it relate to Mark's assertion that other religions have played a part in the development of humanity - is humanity's timeline also reflected through the birth of Mohamed, and all the other major prophets? I suppose any point in history can be postulated as a point of symmetry if you don't specify exactly how you compare later events with earlier ones!

I also wonder what it means to say that history has been shaped by secret forces. As Professor Peter Woit said about String Theory, "It is not even wrong!" - i.e. the proposition is sufficiently vague, that it can't even be proved or disproved! (I think the quote was originally applied to something else in physics - he did not invent it).

David
 
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#8
When I was a Christian I was quite obsessed with demonology for several years. I read a lot of books on the topic and swallowed up as many accounts of encounters as I could. There’s really no doubt that people experience what they call “demons.” If you study “demonology” in the same way you study UFO experiencers (ie-you listen to account after account, I prefer to hear people tell their stories on camera so I can decide if I believe them or not) certain patterns emerge. Patterns which are similar to the NDE data in that cultural background or expectation may play a role in your experience. When you hear enough accounts, it’s clear that negative entities come at people in Western socieities using an “anti-Jesus” angle. Repeating patterns include knockings on the wall which come in 3’s, or scratches on the skin which come in 3 marks. There are others examples, but I’ll stick with this one for my point rather than going into other commonalities. But if you start reading or watching enough accounts, you’ll see what I mean. This hasn’t gone unnoticed by Christian demonologists who surmise that this “comes in threes” is “a direct mockery of the “Holy Trinity.”

If you move to a different culture and study peoples experiences with negative entities, you’ll find this “comes in threes” thing to be totally absent. Is our consciousness shaping these experiences? Or are negative entities masquerading as the dark forces of our cultural beliefs in order to sufficiently terrify us? It’s the same sort of question I have with regards to cultural differences during NDEs.

I’m also convinced that spirit possession is real, and that Christian exorcism works. But here’s the rub, other religious and spiritual ceremonies also work for the same purpose, unsurprisingly. If you want to see what is probably the best attested (with regards to eye-witness testimony) case of demonic infestation and possession on record, i reccomend this case. No less than 10 people were witnesses to these bizarre events, including 3 police officers, a prison guard, a warden, a restaurant owner, and 4 other people who had the gentlemen from prison stay at their house while he was on leave from prison for a funeral. This man was tormented and essentially became possessed. There’s no mistaking the testimony of these people. It happened. They witnessed scratches appearing from nowhere on the victim, saw him levitate, and (most bizarrely) witnessed the man create rain in the house, rain in a restaurant, and rain in the prison. These raindrops went in all directions, including from the ground to the ceiling, and from wall to wall. The video below is a retelling/reincactment with actors, but the witnesses tell their story between the scenes. It’s great.

 
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#9
I think Alex has studied all this far more deeply than most of us, and perhaps he slips into the assumption that we all start from the same point.
I don't agree. I would like Alex to respond here. I don't agree because I trained in what is called the Western Mystery Tradition and Alex seems to be way more yoga guy.

Take for example, the suggestion that Christ came as a sort of half way event in the history of humanity, with every BC event being mirrored by an AD event.

This makes sense to me. I am not saying I agree with it, just that I understand it. Alex's point about Christians 'believing' is pertinent. But Mark did emphasise the mythic dimension - and 'believing' in an 'historic' event in a mythic way takes a bit of explanation. There are a bunch of myths that are believed to be history - and so long as the believers are faithful to the myth that does not matter. But when believers pervert the myth as history for political purposes it becomes problematic.

Let me see if I can make this sensible. The Gospel stories of Jesus are mythic fiction. The essence of lived reality is the moral dimension and not the rational linear one. Our memories, for example, distort objective fact in order to convey a moral message. That is why, because we hold to the moral (from our perspective) and not the 'factual', what we believe to be a memory will be laughed at by another person at the same event, with a different moral (and existential) imperative. All 'historic' reality 'degrades' to myth. Myth endures because it retains the essential seeds of human experience - the moral and the mystical. In cultures that could not record 'history' what they had to preserve was the moral message of an event. We remember myth because we remember stories with a moral message better than we remember 'facts' of history.

So Jesus is 'real' as myth, and that is way more potent than Jesus as history (Mark observed that the 'facts' of Jesus are repeated via other sacred heroes). The luxury (or delusion) of separating history from myth is technological. It is not natural to the human psyche. We are story tellers. Myth is our natural domain. When we liberate our minds from materialism we can recover that. Whether something exists in history is irrelevant. History is the sum of all human experience and yet we allocate significance only to selected events that have meaning to us - and that meaning is mostly moral. We talk about events 'making history' but that is only code for events that we attribute significance to.We can and do contest significance, and history is often a contest of significances. As a republican I do not regard a Royal Wedding as 'historic', but mere trivia for the gullible., In effect, history is bunk. Myth rules.

The 'real' Jesus, as spiritual being is more essentially mythic. Whether he has a historic foundation to his reality is unimportant (and actually detrimental). He is 'real' as a mythic character, the more so as a mythic sacred character. Think Hamlet. We know he is authored as a fictional character. But we can deal with him only if we treat him as historic - as if he has an historic presence. Mark understands this, because it is part of his learning. Its not part of Alex's, so he is still locked into the historically real versus fictionally mythic dichotomy.

In certain respects Angels and Demons fit in the same category - and it is way better we encounter them through myth than in history. Good and evil is another matter (almost). A different filter is needed.
 
#10
There’s really no doubt that people experience what they call “demons.” If you study “demonology” in the same way you study UFO experiencers (ie-you listen to account after account, I prefer to hear people tell their stories on camera so I can decide if I believe them or not) certain patterns emerge.
Exactly. There are experiences people have that are attributed to demonic influence, and may well be. If you examine them in a systematic manner there will be sufficient evidence to conclude that real stuff is happening. But caused by demons? That's a matter of definition. It is possible to study demonology, but why would you? It may be sufficient to know that some folk are afflicted by very nasty (but still human) influences - but not demons.

I am still haunted by Malachi Martin's Hostage to the Devil. I read it back in the late 1970s and wouldn't sleep without a light on for a week. Evil wasn't any kind of nastiness we imagine. It was an utter disregard for any human value or virtue as meaningless and irrelevant to the intruding agent. This was a powerful point. Evil isn't the opposite of good (we can deal with that because we can imagine it). Its the absence of good (not as a denial but because it is inconceivable to the agent) and we cannot imagine that.

I think we call a lot of stuff 'evil' that is just humans behaving in badly screwed up ways. That allows us to be self-righteous and talk a lot of complete blustering bullshit. That ain't evil. The real stuff will scare the crap out of you. You need to know its there, and then forget you do.
 
#11
I am still haunted by Malachi Martin's Hostage to the Devil. I read it back in the late 1970s and wouldn't sleep without a light on for a week. Evil wasn't any kind of nastiness we imagine. It was an utter disregard for any human value or virtue as meaningless and irrelevant to the intruding agent. This was a powerful point. Evil isn't the opposite of good (we can deal with that because we can imagine it). Its the absence of good (not as a denial but because it is inconceivable to the agent) and we cannot imagine that.
You’re right, that was one of the most disturbing and frightening books I’ve ever read. For everybody else, this book closely covers (I think it was 5) possessions and exorcisms of contemporary Americans. The author, Father Malachi Martin, himself an exorcist, went into detail on five exorcisms which he did not partake in, but had the audio tapes of the exorcism sessions and was able to interview the participants including, at least in most of the cases, the afflicted.

The modus operandi of these “demons” was to totally devalue all sense of decency and virtue, particularly love, as Michael pointed out. Their behavior is wildly disgusting with regards to the things they say and the things they do. Disgusting and terrifying. Very effective. And they have a way of knowing things about you, particularly things you are ashamed of, and using them to exploit you, make yourself doubt yourself and everything good, and show this doubt and fear to everybody else in the room.
 
#12
I thought Mark made a telling point about 'magicians' engaged in practice for self-interest.
I disagree. this is just the kind of off-the-cuff, neo-new-age sounding bullshit the pisses me off. kinda like Mark saying that Jesus' birth was THE most pivotal point in history -- well, ok, good enough... now, prove it.

re the above, what's an example of someone seeking spiritual assistance/intervention that isn't self-interested?
 
#13
Take for example, the suggestion that Christ came as a sort of half way event in the history of humanity, with every BC event being mirrored by an AD event. Alex asked Mark if he believed this, and he said he did, but what the hell is it supposed to mean, and how would it relate to Mark's assertion that other religions have played a part in the development of humanity - is humanity's timeline also reflected through the birth of Mohamed, and all the other major prophets? I suppose any point in history can be postulated as a point of symmetry if you don't specify exactly how you compare later events with earlier ones!

I also wonder what it means to say that history has been shaped by secret forces. As Professor Peter Woit said about String Theory, "It is not even wrong!" - i.e. the proposition is sufficiently vague, that it can't even be proved or disproved! (I think the quote was originally applied to something else in physics - he did not invent it).

David
sounds like you got a very good meal -- quit complaining! :)
 
#14
I think Mark is fantastic and I really appreciate/value/awe-struck by his contribution, but I think yr giving him a free pass:

Take for example, the suggestion that Christ came as a sort of half way event in the history of humanity, with every BC event being mirrored by an AD event.

This makes sense to me. I am not saying I agree with it, just that I understand it.
only if he means it in the purely mythical way yr talking about... clearly, it's more than that to Mark.

Like most Christians Mark doesn't seem to be able to fully deprogram himself from his cultural conditioning re the primacy of the Christian story. This seems like another form of backdoor-quasi-materialism... i.e. consciousness over matter... well, except for this one specific instance with this one Jesus guy in which case everything is different/special/unique.
 
#15
Greetings to all. As a practicing Sufi Muslim for more than 40 years, I would take exception to the point that Mark Booth made about Jesus being the only figure to open the path of the interior. Islamic mystical literature is a vast ocean virtually unknown in the West, beside a few generally (usually poorly understood) poems of Rumi. I’m closer to Joe Atwill’s understanding of Jesus. My own spiritual master used to say that,”Jesus is/was not an historical character. The only place his position becomes clear is in the Quran!” I believe that Jesus existed, and that people may have a genuine spiritual encounter with that reality, but what was perpetrated in his name by the Romans and others who came after him has only served to obscure the authentic teachings. There is, in fact, a prophetic tradition, attributed to Muhammad, peace be upon him, to the effect that this effacing of the foundational teachings is the fate of EVERY religious nation. And he didn’t exclude his own followers, by the way!
 
#16
You dare question The Mighty Booth! :)
this is just the kind of off-the-cuff, neo-new-age sounding bullshit the pisses me off.
Well, this is a very old concept (magic for selfish ends leading to a bad place), and can also be found in some of the anthropological literature on shamans, so, I wouldn't call it new age. As for the reality of the statement? Well, I suppose there are two options here: 1) It's just a moralising overlay (which is not necessarily a bad thing), and 2) It is a pragmatic truth gained though many generations of observation.

And, yeah, you make a good point regarding what is selfish or not, but, if we manage to be honest with ourselves, I think we can feel the difference in any given situation. Many altruistic actions can have benefits for those performing them,sure, but I think the dividing line is what effect the action has on other people, and what we're willing to do for our own self-aggrandisement.

The healing of a stranger could be a good contender for being a request for spiritual assistance/intervention that isn't self-interested.
sounds like you got a very good meal -- quit complaining!
Yes, I find Chinese food very satisfying.
Greetings to all. As a practicing Sufi Muslim for more than 40 years, I would take exception to the point that Mark Booth made about Jesus being the only figure to open the path of the interior.
I get what you're saying here, but, to be fair, Booth does frame his story as being told from the perspective of the Western Mystery Traditions (which, of course, might not exist without Islamic influence).

Can I ask you a question? Without being an expert, Sufism, Christian Mysticism, Kabbalah, and Greek Neo-Platonism have always struck me as being deeply intertwined views of reality, as branches sprouting from the same root. Would you agree?

As an aside, I very much enjoy the Sufi emphasis on love as an avenue to interaction with the Divine..... and I also listen to Sufi devotional music quite frequently. :)
 
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#17
Like most Christians Mark doesn't seem to be able to fully deprogram himself from his cultural conditioning re the primacy of the Christian story.
I don't see a problem with this. Mark observed that the Christian story repeats other mythic stories about sacrificed heroes. So focusing on one is not an issue, so long as it is taken as a focal point rather than the problematic Christian doctrine of Jesus being uniquely the Son of God born into history. There is value to having a personal 'one way' - it gives structure and order and allows for a discipline. It like saying there's only one way to the top of the mountain - up. But that 'up' is infinitely varied. Pick you variety and stick to it.

The trouble is we do not know whether there was an historic guy at the centre of the Jesus story based on available evidence. It is pretty clear that there gospels are fictions -stories that may contain enduring spiritual wisdom as well as a lot of propaganda and BS. But the mythic Jesus emerges in history, and it may be valid to speak of a 'spirit' who expresses in a historic context via a mythos. So there is actually no reason why a 'historic' Jesus has to be a physical person. There is magical process of creating a thought form that can then be 'inhabited' by a spirit. For example the 'Christ' may be best manifested or expressed via a mythic character, which may be 'enacted' by a human - who expresses the 'sacrifice' of spirit on the 'cross' of the material world. There are ancient images of the 'shaman' being hung on a tree - an image full of deep symbolism.

For me the crucifixion image taps a deep human intuition about initiatory sacrifice. It isn't rational. In fact it defeats rationalism. Here, in fact, taking a rational and historic POV is really driving the materialistic agenda. It is absurd to interrogate the Christ mystery from a rational perspective. But it equally absurd to assert exclusive literalism of historic presence as an actual flesh and blood human who is literally the one and only 'Son of God'. But that idiotic assertion offends against the mythic more than against the rational. Its really none of the rational's business. A child has no business being involved in the sex life of its parents. And although Mark sees rationalism as a new form of consciousness, it is an infant compared to the mystical and mythic.

If I may continue this allusion further, the 'error' of the rational is the denial of its parents. As we grow up we must deny the authority of parents over us - but not their validity, or their existence - which is what materialism does. For me, most materialists are shitty angst ridden teenagers riddled with that arrogant immodesty of their age, innocence and ignorance. Marks' observation that materialism is a kind of evolutionary step in human consciousness, moving beyond the 'dreamy' mentality of the 'pagan' world has a lot of merit, and it would be a good theme to pursue. I think post materialist thought returns to the 'spirit' of its ancestors, but shaped by the novel insights into material existence afforded by the age of technology that started with the lens. The previous relationship with physical reality was profoundly effective, but fuelled by a different mentality.

For me there is nothing much about Christianity for which I have much affection, save acts of compassion expressed in various forms. In Christianity we do see the train wreck of traditional and emerging mentalities clashing. In its worst aspect the brutality of the new savaged the ancient. Theology and brutal propaganda ravaged the ancient, and were in turn ravaged by a younger mentality that had eschewed the sacred utterly, because it mistook the carnage wrought upon the ancient, and the triumph of theology, for a representation of the sacred. And that was nothing that reason could embrace.

There is on doubt at all that Christianity is fundamental to the West's evolution. Read Inventing the Individual: The Origins of Western Liberalism by Larry Siedentop. So I do not mind that Mark has not been able to fully deprogram himself from his cultural conditioning concerning the primacy of Christianity. I don't think any of us have - if we are born into that tradition. The challenge for me is not to 'deprogram' by turning away, but to turn into, and go deeper than the facile cant of the shallow public faith. The 'mystery tradition' that flows beneath the pavement of our culture includes an 'esoteric' version of Christianity. When I first encountered it I did not find it persuasive at all. It seemed like a cop out. Even now some of it seems like a try hard effort to preserve something that should be allowed to quietly curl up and die. I do not think the language helps. Reference to Christianity attracts baggage that is terribly spoiled. But the essential truths are trans traditional.

These truths are emerging through the sciences - human and physical. Mark touched on this point briefly. The way of thinking we like to exemplify as 'scientific' engages with reality in unique ways. We have very different conscious ways of knowing. In the materialistic phase of thought they excluded mythos. Now we are including it via a form of disciplined practical inquiry we call 'science'. But the likes of Dawkins and kin also remind us that any way of knowing can be debased and corrupted into dogma and propaganda. That happens when ego matters more than truth.
 
#18
Greetings to all. As a practicing Sufi Muslim for more than 40 years, I would take exception to the point that Mark Booth made about Jesus being the only figure to open the path of the interior. Islamic mystical literature is a vast ocean virtually unknown in the West, beside a few generally (usually poorly understood) poems of Rumi. I’m closer to Joe Atwill’s understanding of Jesus. My own spiritual master used to say that,”Jesus is/was not an historical character. The only place his position becomes clear is in the Quran!” I believe that Jesus existed, and that people may have a genuine spiritual encounter with that reality, but what was perpetrated in his name by the Romans and others who came after him has only served to obscure the authentic teachings. There is, in fact, a prophetic tradition, attributed to Muhammad, peace be upon him, to the effect that this effacing of the foundational teachings is the fate of EVERY religious nation. And he didn’t exclude his own followers, by the way!
I with you right up to, "The only place his position becomes clear is in the Quran!” why substitute the primacy of the New Testament with the primacy of the Quran?
 
#19
The challenge for me is not to 'deprogram' by turning away, but to turn into, and go deeper than the facile cant of the shallow public faith.
sure... maybe... everyone has their own spiritual path. I just think it helps to remain somewhat grounded in history (consensus reality). it's like trying to process modern feminism without understanding Gloria Steinem as a CIA op.
 
#20
Alex's question at the end of the podcast:

Does Mark Booth get the big picture right (good vs evil, angels vs demons)? What's the counter argument? Who would you like to see come on the show to put that argument?
Maybe a medium like John Edward would have a different opinion.

My view is that there isn't an "evil" evolutionary path. "Evil" is ignorance. Beings evolve spiritually by learning from experiencing the consequences of their actions. Good actions have good consequences, bad actions have bad consequences. That's the law of karma. It is a natural law like gravity not a law enforced by judgment. Over time, all beings learn to prefer the good consequences that come from good actions. We learn that it is more pleasant to love than to hate.
 
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