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Question 142: Does the “Black Panther” movie have any relevance for living in oneness?

 
The “Black Panther” movie is based on comic book literature which often deals in epic dramas of cosmic proportions as well as personal problems the characters have to deal with. So the “Black Panther” has some outstanding themes to talk about in relationship to living in the oneness of all life.

 
A central theme of the movie arises from the question of how do we achieve our goals in this life. The villainous Killmonger character who tries to take over the leadership of Wakanda (the Black Panther’s country) would use the idea of “let us do evil that good may come.” He may have had some good intentions to set things right in the world, but he had hatred in his heart and was willing to use violent force to reach his goals. This relates to real history wherein people like Hitler, Stalin, Mao and others like them may have held a vision for a better society, but they tried to force people into their ideas of the best society. People who resisted or opposed them were declared to be enemies and were eliminated in one way or another.

 
We can look at these major historical figures and easily see their faults, however, a lot of people think along the same lines. They think they have to hurt other people in order to get their way. They may justify their actions for what they think are good reasons or possible good results. Killmonger had his reasons. He thought that using forcewith superweapons would wipe out the established military powers of the world. However, you cannot defeat the power elite in a dualistic battle. The only winners are the hidden power elite who benefit from constant war and poverty.

 
So the lesson for living in oneness is that there is never a need to use violent force to get your way. When We are living in oneness we want the best for everyone. There is no need to step on anyone else in order to move up. We are all equal parts of the One Divine Spirit.

 
If you have personally been oppressed by the power elite, your recourse isn’t to fight back on their terms or their home turf because they have too much fire power, and you have to play by their rules, the rules inherent in a dualistic world view.
The only way out is up, that is, to transcend your condition and circumstances. The unlimited power of the soul, existing in harmony and love for all creationpower has to be accessed. Non-violent protests and actions can be used to some effect, but the best solution is to rise above the duality of this world and reach for the Christ consciousness of oneness. It is a gradual path, but it can be accelerated if you want it like a person held underwater wants air.

 
In the movie, the Black Panther also uses force to defend himself, his people, and his country. The heroes in the comic book world are the ones fighting for truth, justice, and liberty for all. They represent the good side of duality. However, their battles will be endless because there will always be some relative evil that will arise to threaten them. The solution is to realize our oneness with all life and thus banish the idea of “having enemies.” A deeper understanding of life will come to you.
Non-violence leads to the highest ethics, which is the goal of all evolution. Until we stop harming all other living beings, we are still savages. – Thomas Edison

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Question 141: According to the Gospel of Oneness, what happens in a fistfight?

 

In a fistfight two people are controlled by their egos, each with something to prove, and each taking themselves too seriously. They cannot solve their problems by talking it out, so they resort to physical violence to show their superiority and dominance. They completely forget that they are both children of God, that they are both part of the same Spirit. Their prideful egos will not back down from a fight because that would leave them open to being called a coward or a wimp or worse. The ego cannot stand to have such a negative image placed upon it. The more witnesses there are, the harder it is for the ego to back down.

 
There are also pent up feelings of anger and aggressiveness that come out in a fight. Hitting something or someone is an emotional release. A lot of this release takes place in sports of various kinds as in hard tackling and blocking in football, spiking a volleyball, serving a tennis ball, hitting a baseball, or a golf ball. These feelings of anger build up from the many stressful situations people face.

 
Feelings of fear, anger, and aggressiveness are also reinforced by negative forcefields that build up over time. These forcefields can be specific to locations where people feel oppressed and down-trodden, and when two people are on the verge of a fight, the forcefields act on them. These forcefields can be countered by forcefields of light, which also build up from the loving actions of people.

 
How can a person resist the pride of the ego and follow the teachings of Jesus on turning the other cheek and having a non-violent attitude? Stand in the vastness of your Soul and realize your oneness with all life. Love yourself and send love to everyone else. Your opponent wants to prove some kind of superiority and dominance, but that won’t be real. It will melt away in the truth discerning fire of the soul. The ego may be into fighting, but the soul is into peace, love, and creative expressions in the harmony of all life.

 
The soul is also into justice, so how does that fit into an unfair fight? How did Jesus handle it? He was unfairly accused by the religious authorities, then handed over to the Romans and then beaten, scourged, and nailed to a cross. It was a mighty test for him to stay in love and forgive them even as they were killing his body. Whatever they did to Jesus they did unto themselves, maybe 10 times over and they suffered the consequences within themselves. Jesus forgave them, but until they forgave themselves, they suffered from the inner guilt. We cannot escape the consequences of our actions, and so justice is always done. The ego wants us to continue in cycles of violence, but we don’t have to follow that urge to seek revenge. The brave person is the one who stands in love, no matter what happens.

 
Other ways besides turning the other cheek have been developed such as Aikido, which uses martial arts techniques to subdue an attacker without hurting him. It takes much practice though to become good enough to stop an aggressive attacker. Pepper spray and electric stunners have also been developed to stop attackers. All of these can work if a person is well prepared. The ultimate preparation and protection is to realize your oneness with all life and live in love and joy all the time. The soul is eternal and will always survive.

 
You and I and everything in the universe exists as part of the endless flow of God’s love. Realizing this, we recognize that all creation is bound together with the same benevolence. To harmonize with life is to come into accord with that part of God which flows through all things. To foster and protect all life is both our mission and prayer. – Morehei Ueshiba. Founder of Aikido

Question 140: What is the “Christ Consciousness” according to the Gospel of Oneness? Mainstream Christianity rejects this concept as a false teaching of the “new age.”

Yes, mainstream Christianity has several problems with “Christ Consciousness.” For one, they say the idea echoes the original lie of the serpent when he says to Adam and Eve, “You shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.” So they say that if people could attain Christ Consciousness then we would be “as gods,” and become a law unto ourselves.

Another problem with the idea is that Jesus warned that a time will come when many false “Christs” will arise. So the idea of having the Christ Consciousness be attainable by more people than only Jesus plays right into this fear of being deceived by false Christs.

The biggest objection to this idea is that it takes away the unique position of Jesus Christ being the only begotten son of God who is actually God himself. Nobody else could have Christ consciousness because it belongs exclusively to Jesus. They say If anyone else claims to have Christ Consciousness or says you can have it too, they are lying to you. All these objections are backed up by Bible verses, but there are also verses that seem to support the idea of a universal Christ consciousness, but either way the Bible is not our ultimate authority.

In the Gospel of Oneness the “Christ Consciousness” comes from the Supreme vibrationless Creator God beyond all created forms and refers to the personal loving intelligence of the Supreme Creator who is within creation and can be described as the Word of God that has made all things. This personal intelligence is omniscience and omnipresent and is God in creation. You could say it is “the only begotten Son of God.” We are all part of this consciousness within creation. How could it be any other way? Nothing can possibly be outside of the consciousness of God. The God outside of creation is the same as the God acting inside of creation, known as the Holy Spirit, which is one with the creative and guiding Christ Consciousness.  It is the comforter; the very personal presence of the Creator. There, the Holy Trinity explained. Very clear, right? Probably not, that is why we focus on the basics of oneness in our every day behaviors—be kind, be loving, be creative, be forgiving, be helpful to others, and be a smile millionaire, and we will understand the trinity by and by.

Since we are part of the consciousness of Christ, we have the innate ability and potential to realize our oneness with Christ Consciousness. That doesn’t make us into separate gods or into false Christs, rather it helps us to appreciate the beauty, love, majesty, wisdom and everything else that is so wondrous about creation and the Creator.

As for the question of whether or not Jesus the man is the Supreme God or not, and what that means for humanity, well that has been debated for centuries hasn’t it? You can get the answer directly from Jesus without relying on the Bible or other scriptural verses. The answer may not come easily though.  We can talk to Jesus as much as we want to, but to hear back from him directly is another matter. You may have to meditate on your oneness with Jesus for a long time, or maybe a short time.

Here is the answer from the Gospel of Oneness: Since God is equally present in everyone and loves everyone equally, then it follows that everyone has the potential to realize his or her oneness with God, even if it takes thousands or millions of incarnations. We each have a soul-identity that journeys through time and space, gathering experience while co-creating. Some of us reach that realization of oneness before others and they may become teachers and examples. Jesus, Krishna, and Buddha are three outstanding examples. Some people think Krishna is the supreme personality of God, others think Jesus is the son of God as well as being God himself. Other spiritual teachers have been regarded as incarnations of God. The gospel of oneness does not see any particular human personality as the supreme Creator God. We reach for the consciousness of Christ within ourselves that leads us to our identity in God, the infinite reality and source of all… We come one by one into realizing our oneness.

We can pray directly to God or to saints who have realized their oneness with God’s “ Christ Consciousness” such as Jesus, Krishna, Buddha and others as well as Archangels such as Michael and Gabriel. They can all hear us and know us, and they love us with the unconditional love of God.  We may not always get what we pray for, but we will always get what we create and co-create with God, Nature, and other people.

Question 139: What or who is the devil according to the Gospel of Oneness?

In the Gospel of Oneness God is the only reality, and God is the vibrationless Supreme Spirit from which everything with a vibration has come. The creation of the material universe is a show of the vibrational energy of God. The material universe is what we experience with our five senses. If we only believe in the material or physical universe, then we are “lost” in the delusion of thinking that the physical universe is the only reality.

We can’t see the atomic particles and the energy waves that combine to make physical forms. It wasn’t until science proved that matter and energy are interchangeable that we began to learn that maybe the physical forms are illusory. Even so, many people are not believing there is a God of oneness in and behind every physical form and energy wave.

This delusion of reality is what, in Vedic teachings, is called “maya.” This is the broad definition of the “Devil” with a capital D because it deludes us in all ways. We are, in a sense, under the delusion of the Devil, or the impersonal “Devil Force” that hides the reality of God from us. This delusion is a liar and murderer from the beginning of time according to Jesus. This delusion has spawned all the small d “devils.” This is the problem of evil that arises in a free will universe where God seems to be hidden from us. When every conscious being can do or think in unlimited ways, then all manner of thoughts and actions can happen, including the harmful ones.

So throughout human history on Earth, all kinds of harmful and cruel actions have happened. There have been plenty of devils with a small “d,” that is, people who have hurt other people, animals, and the environment. Some people who have gained lots of power have been responsible for hurting millions of people, and you know the ones from recent history, but there have been plenty more in the ancient past.

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With all the evil that has been done in the past a “forcefield of evil” has become a devilish influence on people. This forcefield can be personified as a satanic being, although it has no reality in God’s creation. There are also evil influences from the non-physical realms. These come from beings who live in the astral realms but are still under the delusion that they are separate from God and other people. Some of these beings have a powerful influence and people may think of them as “fallen angels,” or the “principalities and powers of the air,” but they have constraints and cannot take away our free will. There is no one supremely evil person known as the Devil, but there are many evil beings who are deeply lost in the delusion of thinking they are separate from God.

People who purposely hurt other people think they are separate from God and can hurt other people and animals without hurting themselves. You can see this behavior throughout the world where people are hurting others. So basically, the devils with a small “d” arise from thinking they are separate from God and the rest of life. Even though they may believe in God, they think there is a separation between God and human beings and that God favors some people over others.

Another word for devil is anti-Christ because it opposes the Christ Spirit who represents oneness with God. The Christ is all about unconditional love, mercy, joy, beauty, purity, compassion and everything that we think comes from pure love. The reality of God is ever-new joy and bliss and infinite creativity and wonder. When people realize their oneness with God then they forsake the devil and all of its works and ways.

For the people who see God everywhere and are in the universal Christ Spirit of oneness and love, the big “D” Devil does not exist because they see that the physical universe, also known as “Nature,” is part of God. Spirit and Nature are one. “Victory to Spirit and victory to Nature” is the chant for those who realize their oneness with God. They have seen beyond the veil of the delusion of duality.

In conclusion we can say that the devil is an influence to do evil in this world, and although the devil may not be real, the pain and sorrow that come from evil are real; people and animals and all life in this physical realm suffer from it.
However, the Christ Spirit of unconditional love is a much bigger, infinitely bigger influence than the devil, and since the unconditional love and joy of God is the only reality, we will all eventually come back to the realization that we are individual identities participating in the oneness of God. The “Christ Spirit” may be called by other names. It is the intelligent Spirit of Love within God’s creation.

We are living in a physical world now, but the higher realms of Spirit have infinite potential to use our God given creativity. We are learning how to be co-creators with the Supreme Spirit. That is the Gospel of Oneness

Question 138: In the Gospel of Oneness what is the significance of the betrayal of Jesus by Judas Iscariot?

Judas has been seen as they bad guy for the last two thousand years because he led the authorities to where Jesus was hanging out with his disciples. But it seems like it was a set-up all the way. Jesus knew what Judas was going to do. He did not flee or attempt to hide in a secret place. They could have found Jesus without the help of Judas.

The sin of Judas is minor compared to the many ways in which Jesus has been betrayed in the last two thousand years, beginning with Peter who denied his connection with Jesus and then later distorted his teachings by not emphasizing the oneness of life that Jesus taught and by letting his ego go the “I am separate” way.

And then later the various Christian councils came up with the doctrine that Jesus is the only son of God and belief in him was the only way back to God. They promulgated the story that Jesus died for the sins of all mankind, past, present, and future. They made it seem that no one could really follow the example of Jesus because, after all, he was God and he led a perfect life while all the rest of mankind were abject sinners, destined for hell if it wasn’t for the sacrifice of Jesus who died on the cross to redeem us all, if only we would accept that notion.

Everyone who denies their eternal spiritual connection with God is denying Christ because the consciousness of Christ is the manifestation of God in this universe. The Christ consciousness is the Creator and sustainer of this universe in all of its dimensions, from the physical to the highest spiritual realms. So anyone who thinks he or she is a separate entity, apart from the oneness of God, is actually betraying Christ. That would be a lot of people

Jesus represents the Christ consciousness, as do others who have realized their oneness with our Creator God. You don’t have to be a Christian to realize your oneness with God. “Christ consciousness” is just our Western term. In India this consciousness is called “Kutastha Chaitanya,” or Krishna consciousness. Buddhists and Taoists have other names for it. Christians or other religionists who say they have the only way or the absolute truth are also betraying Christ because everyone is part of God whether they acknowledge it or not.

The message of the Gospel of Oneness is that we don’t have to continue in our thoughts of being separate from God. We are all spiritual souls experiencing life in the physical realms. God does not reject us because we make so many mistakes and even do terrible things to each other. This physical life, often so difficult, is just one manifestation of our eternal story. We are eternally within the love and bliss of God.

The three touchstones that woke Buddha up – sickness, old age, and death – are a pretty good place to start when crafting a tragic tale. And if we need to get more specific: heartbreak, destruction, miscomprehension, natural disasters, betrayal, and the waste of human potential. Paul Di Filippo

Question 137: Does the Gospel of Oneness have anything to do with the occult?

“Occult” means hidden.  The Gospel of Oneness is very open about everything. There is no clique of people behind it.  There is no esoteric doctrine or symbolism. There is no hidden agenda. There are no rich people or corporations that are backing it for their own purposes. There is no storehouse of funds. There is no tithing system or a priestly class to oversee it. It has no worldly power at all. It doesn’t employ anyone to run the show.

There is no secret handshake, no magic, no miracles because everything is already manifesting so wondrously and the possibilities and potential for more manifestations are infinite.

There is no need for rigid doctrines or external saviors who die for your sins. There is no need to pray in a set direction or so many times per day. There is no final prophet or second coming of an external beneficent ruler. There are no idols to appease or bow down to. Your own will power is your savior, and when it is in harmony with the Divine will of the Creator you will be in bliss.

The Gospel of oneness is taken up one by one as individuals come to realize that they are connected with all life, all of creation within the One Spirit. The Gospel of Oneness is about love for all creation including ourselves. People within the Gospel of Oneness live lives of compassion, kindness, and love for all. In this question and answer format I have tried to show the many facets and approaches and ramifications of what it means to live in oneness with all life.

There is no membership roll, no organization chart, no dues to pay, no head count as to how many people are in the Gospel of Oneness, but it is open to everyone. All you need to do is realize your oneness with the One Spirit from whom Creation flows and then to live in the love and bliss of your own divinity.

My first book of 108 questions and answers about the Gospel of Oneness is available on Amazon Kindle. It will answer many of your questions about living in Oneness with all Life.

Truth is one. Sages call it by different names.
— Rig Veda (c. 4000 BC)

True religion is real living; living with all one’s soul, with all one’s goodness and righteousness.
— Albert Einstein

The little space within the heart is as great as the vast universe.   The heavens and the earth are there, and the sun and the moon and the stars.  Fire and lightning and winds are there, and all that now is and all that is not.
— The Upanishads

Though the eye is small, the soul which sees through it is greater and vaster than all the things which it perceives. In fact, it is so great that it includes all objects, however large or numerous, within itself. For it is not so much that you are within the cosmos as that the cosmos is within you.
— Meher Baba

Love is the reflection of God’s unity in the world of duality.  It constitutes the entire significance of creation.
— Meher Baba

The human being is part of the whole, called by us the ‘universe’, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separate from the rest — a kind of optical delusion of consciousness.  This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires.  Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.
— Albert Einstein

Question 136: What does the “grace of God” mean in the Gospel of Oneness?

Perhaps you have heard someone say, “There but for the grace of God, go I.” Such a statement presumes that God doesn’t extend his grace to everyone. This statement is usually made about a person who is having serious problems or perhaps has even been killed. The statement may be made by someone who has survived a disaster while others have been killed or injured. But if he doesn’t survive the next disaster, can we say he lost the grace of God?

So the statement doesn’t make any sense. God doesn’t withhold or give grace willy-nilly. God’s grace if given all the time, it is actually the love of God that cares deeply for everyone. The circumstances and vagaries of life are the result of karmic conditions and a soul’s life plan to have certain experiences. A person suffering in a hard life of poverty still has the grace of God. Lessons are being learned, karmic debts are being paid. No matter what circumstances a person encounters, he or she can always tune into the grace of God.

Some Christians say that we are saved by the grace of God, and that we cannot save ourselves. But some of them will also say that not everyone receives the grace of God, and so they are not saved. This is a short-sighted view which does not take into account the truth of reincarnation. In one lifetime it may seem that a person does not receive the grace of God, but that lifetime is just one link of a very long chain of lives.

The Gospel of Oneness says that the grace of God is like a fountain of love, always flowing and available to everyone.

Millions of hells of sinners cannot come near to exhaust infinite grace.– Samuel Rutherford

 

Now I will say this to every sinner, though he should think himself to be the worst sinner who ever lived: cry to the Lord and seek Him while He may be found. A throne of grace is a place fitted for you. By simple faith, go to your Savior, for He is the throne of grace. –Charles Spurgeon

 

Faith is a living, daring confidence in God’s grace, so sure and certain that a man could stake his life on it a thousand times.– Martin Luther

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