Thursday, April 3, 2014



Part III, 103, 4 
Spiritual Communion
 The characteristic difference between a social occasion and a
 religious gathering is that in contrast with the secular the
 religious is pervaded by the atmosphere of communion. In this
 way human association generates a feeling of fellowship with
 the divine, and this is the beginning of group worship.
 Partaking of a common meal was the earliest type of social
 communion, and so did early religions provide that some
 portion of the ceremonial sacrifice should be eaten by the
 worshipers. Even in Christianity the Lord’s Supper retains
 this mode of communion. The atmosphere of the communion
 provides a refreshing and comforting period of truce in the
 conflict of the self-seeking ego with the altruistic urge of the
 indwelling spirit Monitor. And this is the prelude to true
 worship — the practice of the presence of God which
 eventuates in the emergence of the brotherhood of man.
 When primitive man felt that his communion with God had
 been interrupted, he resorted to sacrifice of some kind in an
 effort to make atonement, to restore friendly relationship. The
 hunger and thirst for righteousness leads to the discovery of
 truth, and truth augments ideals, and this creates new
 problems for the individual religionists, for our ideals tend to
 grow by geometrical progression, while our ability to live up to
 them is enhanced only by arithmetical progression.
 The sense of guilt (not the consciousness of sin) comes either
 from interrupted spiritual communion or from the lowering of
 one’s moral ideals. Deliverance from such a predicament can
 only come through the realization that one’s highest moral 
ideals are not necessarily synonymous with the will of God.
 Man cannot hope to live up to his highest ideals, but he can be
 true to his purpose of finding God and becoming more and
 more like him.
 Jesus swept away all of the ceremonials of sacrifice and
 atonement. He destroyed the basis of all this fictitious guilt and
 sense of isolation in the universe by declaring that man is a
 child of God; the creature-Creator relationship was placed on
 a child-parent basis. God becomes a loving Father to his
 mortal sons and daughters. All ceremonials not a legitimate
 part of such an intimate family relationship are forever
 God the Father deals with man his child on the basis, not of
 actual virtue or worthiness, but in recognition of the child’s
 motivation — the creature purpose and intent. The
 relationship is one of parent-child association and is actuated
 by divine love.

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