SFL Forum
Clear your mind of all thought... - Printable Version

+- SFL Forum (http://www.sflforums.com)
+-- Forum: Deep Discussions (http://www.sflforums.com/forumdisplay.php?fid=28)
+--- Forum: General Theology Discussion and Debate (http://www.sflforums.com/forumdisplay.php?fid=12)
+--- Thread: Clear your mind of all thought... (/showthread.php?tid=9718)

Pages: 1 2 3


Clear your mind of all thought... - Woke Up - 11-25-2017

What would happen if you decided to read your Bible as if you had never once heard a sermon or had any prior teaching on the Bible whatsoever.

How much clearer would your understanding of it be?


RE: Clear your mind of all thought... - leo the lamb - 11-25-2017

I've thought about dusting off my bible after years not reading it, in hopes of seeing it with fresh eyes. Thing is, it would take either a major shift in life perspective (which is kinda been happening gradually in recent years) or many more decades of avoiding the subject altogether (certainly this tactic employed by itself does not guarantee change, but in the meantime I can't help changing anyway, so taking a long break does help I think). I can report that I've had little glimpses of the possibilities offered by looking at bible passages and commentary from an outside, more objective angle, but my cynical preconceptions together with old beliefs I can't fully shake tend to crowd the mental space and make it difficult to keep my thought process outside one or another box.


RE: Clear your mind of all thought... - pastor's wife - 11-25-2017

For several years now, I've enjoyed reading the Bible in different versions just to get myself away from hearing the same phrases which are sometimes connected with particular fundy explanations.

I enjoy the New Living Translation most.l


RE: Clear your mind of all thought... - WalrusWrangler - 11-27-2017

I would love to be able to do this. Even apart from the Bible, I'd love to taste ice cream for the first time, read Lord of the Rings for the first time, etc. The closest I came with the Bible was when I first left the IFB. I still had a lot of baggage, but my attitude was skepticism. I would read passages with the idea that most of what I've heard was wrong. Reading in a non-KJV for the first time also helped.


RE: Clear your mind of all thought... - myotch - 11-27-2017

On a different note, I have recently tried a classic form of meditation brought to the written word by a Trappist monk, where one does attempt to clear one’s mind of nothing but Love.

It doesn’t change how I view scripture, but then again, I’m no Fundy literalist KJVO type, either.

I do have a pre-existing view of scripture being authoritative on Judeo-Christian faith and morals, but that’s not wholly unlike my view that the Koran is authoritative on Islamic faith and morals, the sole difference being I’m Christian and not Muslim. I also believe in Christian Scripture as a tradition of the church.

edit: I rather like skepticism in all areas, I admire many agnostics and atheists even though I am a theist, and a dirty papist at that. I like to challenge some of my own beliefs, and I think it is important in order to keep faith actually vibrant and alive. I say all this to iterate that the original post (op) is ironically stained with a kind of presupposition ("suppose you had never...") itself, and tries to retrofit critical analysis from there.

It might work with the currently-skeptical as a kind of intellectual reinforcement, er, exercise. To people who want to keep their faith, these can sound like words the wolf-in-sheep-clothing comes to say in an effort to sow doubt.

So, I ask out of curiosity as to what your response might be: have you come to sow doubt?


RE: Clear your mind of all thought... - Dr. Jezebel - 11-28-2017

I think if I read the Bible as,someone who'd never been exposed to it before, I'd probably view it as a collection of myths & fables, with some ancient wisdom tossed in as an aside. It's not wholly different from other ancient stories, like Gilgamesh or Aesop's fables.


RE: Clear your mind of all thought... - Woke Up - 11-28-2017

Myotch:

I'm sorry if you took my question as me trying to stir up doubt. Absolutely not. I am in such a search of truth at this point in my life. I was raised in a full circle Fundamental setting. The KJV and teachings from MOG were ALL I knew until I was about 30 years old.
In fact, I was SO SHELTERED up until my early twenties that I had no idea that there was an Apocrypha. One of our Pastors spoke of it during a sermon and I was floored that such a book existed.

I had no teaching on how we got our Bible or that there was a Septuagint, Latin Vulgate....NOTHING.

I suppose you could say I thought the KJV just fell from the sky and poof....we had our Bible.

I literally thought that Jesus spoke the way that the KJV Bible was written. Because my whole life, adults would say, "The Bible is written this way because that's how they spoke when the wrote the Bible." What I didn't realize is that they were telling me the truth...But not the whole truth.... They DID speak that way when King James had his version printed.

We were taught NEVER to question anything about the Bible. So, being a submissive little girl and teen, I just went along with it and never questioned it. After all, if the MOG were telling us it was the truth, that's all I needed.

So to answer your question... NO. I am not trying to stir up doubt. I just want answers. And the closer to the truth, the better.


Clear your mind of all thought... - EnlightenedMK - 11-28-2017

This is something I’ve tried to do ever since leaving Fundyville. Particularly when it’s a passage that I’ve heard misused over and over again. Sometimes I have to say out loud “that is not what this passage is teaching and why” much to my poor husband’s chagrin. But it does help to read it in multiple translations and listen to other people’s view on the topic.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


RE: Clear your mind of all thought... - First Time Caller - 11-28-2017

I've reflected a lot about what "inspired" means when considering the Bible.  I wonder if we have put too much into the word "inspired."  The Bible was written by human beings who were living in a particular time and culture.  Does inspired mean that God had a part in what they said, or does it mean that he told them word for word what to write?  Or a mix of both?  Still not sure.

Reading in different versions has helped me a great deal - particularly in the Message.  But, more than that, I have tried to make scripture less personal, if that makes sense.  Every verse is not directed to me.  That doesn't mean that I don't value scripture, because I do.  For example, in the past I really struggled with the passage about Mary and Martha - always feeling guilty during times where I was busy and there was so much to do, and I couldn't slow down.  Jesus's words to Martha felt like a rebuke to me.  But... I am not Martha.  Those words were given to a particular woman, on a particular day, and who was in circumstances that are not the same as mine.  There is wisdom in them - it's good to slow down and all that.  But wisdom is not the same as condemnation.  God knows I'm doing the best I can, and He's not sitting there nitpicking me.

On the same track - each of the epistles was written to a particular church.  Each of those churches had their own problems and needs.    And they were written by men who lived during a time and in a culture that is very different from ours. Maybe that's why sometimes they are confusing and seem to contradict each other.  I guess when I read them now, I do try to draw wisdom from them, but I try to keep in mind that each was written to a particular recipient with particular issues.

I'm not sure if this is necessarily seeing it "with new eyes" as much as it is maybe taking out the old lenses and putting in new ones.  Or like seeing the bigger picture - instead of focusing on one piece of the puzzle, realizing that there is something much bigger going on and having faith that it all fits together somehow... and in order to make it fit I can't simply focus on a single piece.


RE: Clear your mind of all thought... - WalrusWrangler - 11-28-2017

(11-28-2017, 01:08 PM)Woke Up Wrote: Myotch:

I'm sorry if you took my question as me trying to stir up doubt. Absolutely not.  I am in such a search of truth at this point in my life. I was raised in a full circle Fundamental setting. The KJV and teachings from MOG were ALL I knew until I was about 30 years old.
In fact, I was SO SHELTERED up until my early twenties that I had no idea that there was an Apocrypha. One of our Pastors spoke of it during a sermon and I was floored that such a book existed.

I had no teaching on how we got our Bible or that there was a Septuagint, Latin Vulgate....NOTHING.

I suppose you could say I thought the KJV just fell from the sky and poof....we had our Bible.

I literally thought that Jesus spoke the way that the KJV Bible was written. Because my whole life, adults would say, "The Bible is written this way because that's how they spoke when the wrote the Bible." What I didn't realize is that they were telling me the truth...But not the whole truth.... They DID speak that way when King James had his version printed.

We were taught NEVER to question anything about the Bible. So, being a submissive little girl and teen, I just went along with it and never questioned it. After all, if the MOG were telling us it was the truth, that's all I needed.

So to answer your question... NO. I am not trying to stir up doubt. I just want answers. And the closer to the truth, the better.

There's a great podcast called Exploring My Strange Bible that did a series on the Bible's origins. The series is called "Making of the Bible," and you can find it here (just ctrl+f and type "Making of the Bible"). It's also on iTunes and other podcast apps. The speaker's purpose in the series is to dispel the idea that the Bible fell out of heaven on golden tablets. He goes into details on the different manuscripts, how they were compiled and discovered, and so on. 

My old IFB church actually got into this stuff a bit, but they told outright lies from Gail Riplinger's book and other blatantly false sources. Of course the people there didn't believe them to be lies. They thought it was the hidden truth that the mainstream "liberal" (aka non-IFB) Bible scholars wanted to keep from everyone. It's maddening the garbage they pushed.