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Stress of monasticism by Painting by K. Razumovsky, Vienna May 2008, with modified text and colours
Stress for long can lead to illness and death.

From much stress, prolonged medium stress, and accumulating mild stress, some diseases are due

Stress causes troubles. Cramped and exploited living promotes stress. Stress needs to be dealt with before it gets old or makes life unbearable. There are steps to take to counteract stress and its effects earlier. [More on stress prevention, diagnosis and management]

Stress also causes stress management and a great many who live off the stress of others in so many ways.

From Judaism: a tense sect and its stress

If a sect grows bigger, it may be called a religion and offered a bit societal elbow room too. Size matters. Christianity started as a tense sect within Judaism. In the Roman Empire it took up many features of other religions in that realm - surprisingly many are too overlooked. [More]

Still later, fractions developed. Some were persecuted by the Pope, like the Albigensians. The Albigensian Crusade (12091229) was a 20-year military campaign initiated by a pope to eliminate Catharism in Languedoc in the south of France. And later groups of Christians warred against each other - in on case for thirty years, and another for a hundred years. See what happened again and again after Christianity sold out its "turn the other cheek" pasifism to get a state religion in the Roman Empire in the 300s CE: Christians became Roman soldiers, and there came violent suppressions, a Grand Inquisition, crusades, exploitations of America, and wars among followers who obeyed leaders and not gospel sayings of Jesus. There were also suppressions of people in Europe: witch-hunting, for example. Strugges for domination and gains are at the back of much raw and wilful abuse of power.

Christian groups tend to warfare - is that a problem?

From the centuries-long process

Forgeries added to the New Testaments served the needs of prelates in the growing early church. Any original and guaranteed verbatim sayings of Jesus were not recorded. However, in Matthew 10:1-8 and 15:25 he says plainly that his teachings are only for Jews, and not for Gentiles. (Cf. Vermes 2012; 2005). Forgeries put an end to all that among non-Jews.

Hence, a Christian doing greater works than Jesus (John 14:12) looks far-fetched today, even though it should be more of a rule than an exception. The same goes for the power of prayers. Thus, by listing up what true followers should be empowered to do, you get an inkling of things gone bad, from ignoring that the teachings, kingdom, and ministry of Jesus were for Jews only, according to Matthew 10:5 and 15:24. Also, his commands to main oneself, embrace poverty and not be reasonably assertive toward bullies was for Jews only, luckily. (Matthew 5). Yes, a measure of realism - if not optimism - is not out of place for the non-Jewish Christian.

The four basic requirement for non-Jewish Christians are simple, yet frequently ignored.

The end failed

In the course of time, Christianity changed as well. Some twenty gospels were added to it, different gospels in different groups. Four such later-written texts were singled out and attempts were made in the church to edit-coordinate them too. The Missionary Command is a forgery, for example, according to Joseph Wheless. The renowned bible scholar Geza Vermes (2012) goes a long way in affirming that too.

There is evidence that Jesus and followers thought the end of the world was close at hand, and martyrs thought so too. They were wrong about it - misled, in other words victims of a false prophet. Who? It was Jesus. Millions were misled. (Ehrman 1999)

There is a tentative, didactic Jesus-diagnosis. It brings good bible-anchored evidence that the Jesus of the four canonical gospels is a multi-psychopath, that is ravingly insane [The diagnostic test applied to Jesus, with considerata]

What is the fuss if a so-called Christian takes to eating blood food, wrangled poultry and committing adultery? Well, the Law that Jesus calls valid in Matthew 5, was replaced by the four requirements for Gentile believers (Acts 15). So better take heed, the apostles say.

On the other hand, many who mistakenly think it is good to try to live up to the dictates of a multi-psychopath, may end up gravely disappointed. And those who live up to some fellow who teaches that Jesus is behind him or her, seeking acceptance by word-juggling, could be an alarming cause of stress to followers, but not only stress: shame, pain, humiliations and wrong views are possible too. It is wise to be careful with your company and chosen faith, for it can be downright foolish and harmful.

Buddha's warning against duping beliefs is great help if followed up. [Kalama Sutta]

A good diagnosis of the possible insanity of Jesus may be a great help, but hardly to all and sundry.

Those who aim to live apart

Celebrities may soon find it best to shield themselves from paparazzi, the tabloid press and unwelcome others by various means other than expecting politeness and fair dealings. For the sake of peace and security, take a look at what happened to the English music artist John Lennon in 1980. He was shot four times in the back and soon died.

Some celebs get outstandingly depressed and commit suicides, other try overdoses too, but without letting go of life.

Nobility may not want publicity. It may seem different with upstarts. Some rich and famous ones find it fit to shield themselves over and above wearing dark glasses in public. And paparazzis are not the worst menaces there are. There are kidnappers and extortions to bulwark against, if possible.

Each may deal with their humaneness within limits, but what is resorted to may not be very helpful, and not even effective.

Upstarts need so much effective help.

Odd beliefs can cause stress

Monks and nuns and the like

Environments that are marked by rigid, set-up dealings, few regulated boons, high, surrounding walls and demanding calls for self-control and obedience, include prisons, Christian cloisters and mental institutions.

What could be silly about becoming even a superior among monks or nuns? It would depend on which sort of wall such a career ladder leans against. There are good, trustworthy walls and ladders, medium trustworthy walls and ladders, and all the bad ones. Trustworthy advance information could prevent a life of precarious climbing and falling too.

Being "just oneself" all the way or even a long way may upset a celibacy-fit monastic pecking order. Then there is a twist aimed at Christians: "Love the Yahweh with all your foreskin intact". Geza Vermes sums it up:

Fl. During his days of preaching, Jesus of Nazareth addressed only Jews, "the lost sheep of Israel" (Matthew 10:5; 15:24). His disciples were expressly instructed not to approach gentiles or Samaritans (Matthew 10:5). On the few occasions that Jesus ventured beyond the boundaries of his homeland, he never proclaimed his gospel to pagans, nor did his disciples do so during his lifetime. The mission of the 11 apostles to "all the nations" (Matthew 28:19) is a "post-Resurrection" idea. It appears to be of Pauline inspiration and is nowhere else found in the Gospels (apart from the spurious longer ending of Mark [Mark 16:15], which is missing from all the older manuscripts). Jesus' own perspective was exclusively Jewish; he was concerned only with Jews. (Vermes 2012).

OK Christians do not feign and resort to drivel or nonsense over and over.

Ouch and ouch again

The sole target group of Jesus were "good Jews who said yes to stoning unmarried women for being pregnant, just as his own mother". If the Law that the unstoned Jesus grew up to vouch for, had been followed in the case of Mary getting pregnant while unmarried, Jesus had not been born. If the Law had been put to use then, there might not have been any "Hail Mary"'s in the world. After all. (Matthew 5:17-19; :18; Luke 1:26-35; Deuteronomy 22:20,23,24) Let us face it: Jesus said the Law of Moses was to be valid down to the tiniest dot, like it or not, for that Law said the mother of Jesus was to be stoned to death for having him in her belly.

If . . . evidence of the young woman's virginity is not found, they shall bring the young woman to the entrance of her father's house and there the men of her town shall stone her to death." (Deuteronomy 22:20)

If a virgin is engaged to a man, and another man happens to meet her in the city and lies down with her, you should bring them both out to the gate of that city and stone them to death, the girl because she did not scream . . . (Deuteronomy 22:23,24)

Thus: In Jewish law, if a woman was found not to be a virgin before marriage she could be stoned to death. A clearly pregnant, unmarried woman could be stoned. Uncounted numbers of later Hail Marys could have been nipped in the bud that way. The sawing off the law-branch he seemed to be sitting on, could that be wise of Jesus?

Also, if Jesus had outlived his disciples long after his execution, he could have been killed for being a false prophet as well. The end of the world did not come as he had told. By that token, Jesus would have been in lots of trouble if he had lived after the end of the world (!), since the Old Testament demands false prophets must be killed and not feared, and Jesus vouched for that Law completely in Matthew 5:17-19. See also Deuteronomy 18:20-22; Ezekiel 13:9).

The indiscriminate indoctrination-idea that Jesus was killed for all, does not matter. It is a later-added piece of awkward forgery, thinks Joseph Wheless. According to Jesus, his teachings, salvation and kingdom were for Jews only. (Matthew 10:1-8; 15:24; Geza Vermes 2010 37,41; Geza Vermes 2012). And the much later formed dogmas about the triune God came into being after the misconceptions about the end of the world had not be fulfilled when the gospels said they would - during the lifetime of disciples, that is.

Besides, if Jesus and the Father he addressed on the cross had been versed in the Law of Moses, the sixteenth chapter of Leviticus, they should have grasped that Jehovah used two goats in a regular, yearly sacrifice to make peace with his people. If so, the sacrifice of Jesus for Jews was uncalled for, unneeded. Two goats a year were all it would take "for all time to come," as it is written.

The said and heinous sacrifice of Jesus failed so badly that a Ghost that was released and fell on apostles, soon decided to fish Gentiles and not just Jews. Peter's vision on a flat roof in Joppa [Jaffa] deals with such matters. (Acts 10:17-17; 10:44; 15)

Fish are caught and in time consumed. A fishing human should try to stay fit and not be fished and locked in somewhere, and hemmed. These may be understood as figurative soul issues. Add a citation: "Just because you're paranoic does not mean the fishers of men are not after you." Or "Better safe than sorry" - [Compare salmon sides]

Oh, Mary, Mary! It is unwise to saw off the Law you are sitting on while claiming it is valid -

A cause of fear: Doing about the same thing as the mother of Jesus did

Christian brides with children in their bellies or expecting, unmarried mothers are hardly stoned to death in all countries. Well and good. But those who say the Law is valid and go on to break it, are they hypocrites of another kind that Jesus? Rise to to consider how valid his teachings may be, with the uncertain sources, reserving them for Jews only, but with added forgeries and "churchy" editing work, added theology.

The fabrications could involve the Nativity story as well (Matthew 1 and 2). For one thing, if Mary with foetus Jesus in her belly had been stoned according to the Law that Jesus said was good when he grew,, there would have been no such Jesus and no Christianity and its tyranny. Second, as for the nativity tale of the birth of Jesus in the first two chapters to Matthew, listen to a Bible scholar:

There are good reasons, based on close analysis of Jewish tradition, to suppose that St Matthew's claim is a variant on a powerful tradition rather than a literal historical claim: a generic story, so to speak, rather than a specific one.

A contemporary of Matthew, the Jewish historian Flavius Josephus (37–c.100 CE), reports, and later rabbinic literature confirms, a folk tale which was in circulation in New Testament times. It relates to the birth of Moses and his miraculous escape from the hands of Pharaoh of Egypt . . .

St Matthew's account of the Nativity - the basis of all Christmas celebrations - appears in a quite different light when it is considered as the product of a particular Jewish linguistic, literary and religious context, rather than the sentimental narrative we have inherited.

The doctrine of the miraculous conception and birth of a God-man was based on a remarkable mistranslation into Greek - willful or otherwise - of Isaiah's original, quite specific Hebrew words. As for the episode of the massacre of the innocents and escape to Egypt, its similarity to the rabbinic story of the birth of Moses is so striking . . . In both we find dreams, a murderous king advised by interpreters of sacred writings, and the frustration by divine intervention of wicked plans. . . .

The awesomely influential Nativity story in the first book of the New Testament is a speculative, rather than a historical text. Far from being a report of a literal happening, it is an amalgam of flawed Greek-Christian scriptural references, and of 'birth tales' current in Judaism in the first century CE. The story with which we are all so familiar is not fact, but folklore. (Vermes 2010:86-87, emphasis added by me.)

Dr Vermez is a renowned bible scholar. If in the process of getting meat an old bird with false feathers is plucked and found out to be wanting, get other food. Get a fit faith to feed on and not one grounded in a long row of forgeries, for example.

If the story of the birth of Jesus is fabricated, maybe his mother behaved much better in the light of the Law than what the New Testament tells.

A question of validity

Does Jesus the Jew for Jews undermine his own validity by all bizarre vouching for slavery, cruel sacrifices and stoning as regulated in the Law for Hebrews? It could seem so, but take heart: The teachings of Jesus are for Jews only, says the gospel (Matthew 10:5; 15:24; Geza Vermes 2012).

After a gasp of immense relief or whatever, take to heart that non-Jewish Christians got a gentler deal and no rotten tomatos at all. There are only four standard requirements of a non-Jewish Christian, Acts 15 21:25)

"It seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us not to burden you with anything beyond the following requirements: 29 You are to abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from sexual immorality. You will do well to avoid these things. (Acts 28-29; confirmed in 21:25).

Time to start pondering. If you manage to take that seriously, what punishments are they headed for, all those who eat black pudding, blood sausage, and wrangled poultry, you would say? Why are there not equal punishments for such four wrongs of Christians?

There are awfully many "good Christians" who go on breaking one or several of the four requirements and call "Jewsus" "Lord, Lord", but disrespects him in that they read forbidden gospel sayings put in his mouth. They also disregard that according to the Law he vouches, for, Mary should have been stoned to death on her father's doorstep and Jesus could hardly have got a narrow escape then.

So, non-Jewish Christian, the commands of Jesus to Jews are not for you. Be happy about it, for then you escape self-inflicted poverty, self-maiming and further. You find he has no right to condemn you as a hypocrite bound for hell if you get totally away from his gospel sayings.

Is there soon to be equal punishment for eating blood food, wrangled poultry and adultery, you think? Why not adjust to bible teachings that are valid for non-Jews

Biblical adulterers are many, and such adultery is of many sorts

You who have eaten wrangled poultry, blood pudding and further, there is a solution to worrying about what your fare will be after death. It is slipping off a hellbound train when you can. Living a better religion does not bind by folly faith alone (sorry, Luther).

With that golden right on your side, go on to teachings you qualify for and with much good in them - teachings that are helpful - according to a healthy, whole non-maimed body and a sound, not lousily indoctrinated mind. A fit religion, as we call it, is more a way of living that helps us onward and upward. But take about your company too and go for the best.

There is much in the Bible that may amount to give stress if taken seriously and reflected on. For starters, ask yourself if you have eaten black pudding, wrangled chicken, and committed Biblical adultery. It is hard to say which of these three are worst sub specie aeternitatis (under the aspect of eternity), but the chances are that two or three of them are broken by lots of persons, "even as we speak".

Which is worst? These things do not seem to have been clarified for over 1900 years till now by those who should do it, and live off the Bible and a faith. A solution is to embrace neither martyrdom or black pudding.

Things to embrace whole-heartedly take us upward and onward too.

Wrangled poultry, blood sausages and black pudding aside

Sound thinking is a good idea for those who say yes to a scolding and whipping Jesus for Jews only - awfully little considerate and executed in the wake of it and because of it, if you believe Geza Vermes, the Jesus scholar.

His tragic end was precipitated by an unfortunate episode in the Temple of Jerusalem. The noisy business transacted by the merchants and money-changers in the courtyard of the house of God outraged Jesus and the indignant rural holy man overturned their tables and threw them out. He thus created a fracas [a noisy quarrel; brawl] [and] appeared to the Jewish and Roman authorities as a potential threat to law and order. . . . Jesus died on the Roman cross because he did the wrong thing in the wrong place at the wrong time. (Vermes 2010:23-24)

The "wrong thing" was that of bullying persons who seemed to accord to the Law, persons that did not disobey the Law that Jesus vouched for in Matthew 5. So he acted as if possessed. The "wrong place" was the temple precincts, the "wrong time" was during an old celebration. It was as if he wanted others to get rid of him. Some are like that.

They got rid of a whipping-bully. So what?

How does it feel?

How does it feel when you wake up and find your hopes have a weak foundation and to have neglected taking up a helpful path and lost valuable time? How does it feel to realise that your moral sides have been played with for gains of others?

After giving away all property to the poor, as Jesus says in a command (for Jews only),

you don't seem so proud about having to be scrounging your next meal.
How does it feel, how does it feel, to be without a home like a complete unknown?
How does it feel, how does it feel, to be on your own, with no direction home?
All the pretty people, they're all drinking. How does it feel, ah how does it feel?

Fragments from ◦Bob Dylan's Like a Rolling Stone

Good health and fine deals are not for Jews only. Take a deep breath and find that embracing poverty and cede to bullies and more of that sort is for Jews and Jews only. We have a gospel's words for it.

How does it feel to realise that the teachings, salvation, slavery-endorsement of Jesus ministry was for Jews only, on his own word in the gospel of Matthew?

Better than good

Now, also understand that Buddha's gentle Middle Path is not for slavery. Buddha is not fond of slavery, and further, he does not limit his teachings to a particular race or people. Buddha's teachings are for all.

And he says a religion based on vicarious sacrifice - inflicting harm on others - is not the best one. The Law of Moses institutes slavery and vicarious sacrifice, and Jesus vouches for it all. So by all means, seek to recognise the differences between a gentle path for decent folks and low and alarmingly harsh and base doings in the name of religion. Heed the Gentle Middle Way with distinct additions like the Apannaka Sutta.

What to go for along the road of life? See if it could be figuratively true if one gram of good meditation is better than a kilo of vain gospel sayings - vain for non-Jews who just pretend they have the mountain-throwing power or the other miracle-powers that true followers were promised and no one seems to have got so far. Find the loco baits and shun them, for one thing. Look at this:

Why call me Lord, Lord without respecting what I have said, that my teachings are to be forbidden for non-Jews?

That could be a tough one if the follow-up is something like:

Away from me, fake and unqualified follower! You non-Jew!

Many do well without Jesus and alcohol alike. The statistics show that less than half of half of the people on this planet are Christians of a rather forged faith. About as many have not been drinking alcohol either. "About 50 percent of the world's people consume all of its alcohol, and most of them are in the wealthier Northern hemisphere." (World's Health Organisation). (David Sessions, "Does the World Have a Drinking Problem?" The Daily Beast, 18 Feb, 2011) Get free to enter a more decent path through life. Try to "lift up" the everyday consciousness for it, the Aramaic barnasha that the bible-translator George Lamsa considers various aspects of. [Net xxiv].

The Americanised guru Yogananda's understanding of "The Son of Man must be lifted up [like a snake] [John 3:14] is rather similar to that of Lamsa, yet more elaborate and yoga-related:

Jesus said that each son of man, each bodily consciousness, must be lifted from the plane of the senses to the astral kingdom by reversing the matter-bent outflowing of the life force to ascension through the serpent-like coiled passage at the base of the spine – the son of man is lifted up when this serpentine force is uplifed . . . into God-consciousness." [Yj 56-59, cf. "Kundalini"]

Strictly speaking, Jesus does not say just that; it is a yogi's interpretation. Yogananda refers to kundalini, a coiled power in a human being. There are many books about kundalini today. (Kuo)

For all that, sayings of Jesus in the gospels have parallels in other traditions, and the culturally closest is the ancient Jewish one. Almost all that Jesus taught, is in the Old Testament; you only have to find it. So dropping Jesus should not be too difficult - granting he reserved his teachings for Jews only.

Heed the great wisdom in the Apannaka Sutta.

Contents


Traumatic stress, fed with lies, cults, cult matters, cult problems, Literature  

Ehrman, Bart D. Jesus, Apocalyptic Prophet of the New Millennium. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.

Shealy, C. Norman. The Healing Remedies Sourcebook: Over 1,000 Natural Remedies to Prevent and Cure Common Ailments. Boston, MA: Da Capo Press Lifelong Books, 2012. ⍽▢⍽ Dr Shealy is the founder of the American Holistic Medicine Association. This comprehensive sourcebook is easy to read, understand and use. It is based on eight therapeutic backgrounds: Ayurveda, Chinese herbal medicine, traditional folk remedies, herbalism, aromatherapy, homeopathy, flower remedies, and vitamins and minerals. There are some largely safe substitutes for conventional medicines in it too.

Vermes, Geza. The Authentic Gospel of Jesus. London: Penguin, 2005.

Vermes, Geza. From Jewish to Gentile: How the Jesus Movement Became Christianity. Biblical Archaeology Review (BAR) 38:06, Nov/Dec 2012.

Vermes, Geza. The Real Jesus: Then and Now. Minneapolis, MI: Fortress Press, 2010.

Ams: Atkinson, Richard, et al. Introduction to Psychology. 9th ed. San Diego: Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich, 1987.

Bpe: Allport, Gordon. Becoming: Basic Considerations for a Psychology of Personality. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1955. Reprint 1966.

Hi: Smith, Carolyn D., ed, et al. Hilgard's Introduction to Psychology. 14th ed. Belmont: Thomson Wadsworth, 2003.

Lipe: Bai, Kurt. Livet og pengene. Vol. 5, Oslo: Økonomiforlaget, 1981.

Net: Lamsa, George, tr. The New Testament. Philadelphia: Holman Bible Publishers, 1968.

Yj: Yogananda, Paramahansa. The Yoga of Jesus: Understanding the Hidden Teachings of the Gospels. Los Angeles: Self-Realization Fellowship, 2007.



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