(Part Seven)

(Continued From Part Six) 

For many years there has been a conflict between the church and the witches.  There has also been a conflict for many years between the church and the atheists.  This would indicate that there might be some similarities between witches and atheists.  While there certainly are some similarities between witches and atheists, there are also some important differences.

The witches like to keep their distance from the church.  They try to act as if the church does not have any power over them.  They feel that they can make their own rules and that they can create spiritual power on their own without the assistance of the church. 

The atheists will often acknowledge the existence of the church, but they get frustrated when people in the church say that atheists are cold, heartless people who have no morals.  They believe that they have at least as much compassion for other people as do people in the church.  In fact, they sometimes express the opinion that people in the church are cold and heartless because they are so critical, so defensive, and so non-accepting of anyone who has an opinion that questions one of their religious myths.

The witches seem to understand something that the atheists have trouble accepting.  The witches understand why atheists will never, no matter how hard they might try, become accepted by the people in the church.  The witches understand the complexities of spiritual power.  They know that spirituality is not a simple matter of people exchanging their subconscious spiritual thoughts and feelings with other people.  They have made discoveries such as the three-fold law where they learned that a spell that is cast on a person may have a ripple effect that has consequences that were not anticipated when the spell was originally cast.  The witches know that the people in the church have a greater awareness of the complexities of spiritual power than do the atheists, who in the opinion of the witches naively believe that they will be ok if just they try to be a good person and if they try to not hurt other people.

On the other hand, the atheists seem to understand something that the witches have trouble accepting.  The atheists understand why the witches will never, no matter how hard they might try, really become spiritually fulfilled by simply casting spells on other people (and by successfully defending themselves against black magic spells that are cast on them).  While the atheists don't seem to understand the very dynamic nature of spiritual power, they do understand that people who are a part of a spiritual group are often more fulfilled in their spiritual lives than are people who try to exercise spiritual power on their own.  The atheists know that anyone who tries to exercise spiritual power on their own (such as the witches) will eventually meet with frustration because of the nature of group dynamics.  They know that no matter how resourceful the witches might be, the group (or society) will eventually block the witches from developing the kind of spiritual fulfillment that they are seeking.

It might be useful for witches and atheists to consider that both of their groups (the witches and the atheists) may have trouble understanding the nature of the church and the power of the church.  At one time it was unthinkable to question the power of the church because of the external dangers that our societies were faced with at an earlier time in history.  There was a time in history when there was a very real danger that another country might invade your country and that you might be killed in the invasion or that you might have your property and your wealth taken away from you.  The church had a lot of power at that time because even if a person in the year 1850, for example, thought that religious myths might not be true, they believed that they (and the other members of society) would be personally safer from external dangers (like their country being invaded by another country) if people such as themselves did not question religious myths.  There may have been a lot of people at that time who kept their doubts about religious myths to themselves because they felt it was important for their country to be united and strong.

In our world today we are not as concerned as we were at one time about our individual countries needing to be united so that we can fight off an invasion from another country.  And that is probably one reason why more people today do not see any harm in questioning the myths upon which many of our religions are based.  But when people try to express their doubts about religious myths to people in the church they sometimes feel such a large rush of deep, dark, and very negative spiritual energy coming into them from the other person that they might start to wonder if maybe they were wrong and that God actually does exist.  

Why is it that people who question religious myths often feel the wrath of God coming into them from the church people who they are expressing their opinions to?  The answer to this question seems to be that the church people who they are expressing their opinions to are spiritually connected to other people who are similar to themselves.  These church people have developed spiritual structures and spiritual connections with other people who are similar to themselves that are based on a false foundation.  They know in their hearts that their spiritual power does not come from God.  They do not really believe the religious myths deep in their hearts.  They know that their spiritual power comes from exchanging spiritual energy with other people who are similar to themselves and that their spiritual power does not really come from God.  But they feel that there is some truth in saying that they believe in God because they know in their hearts that their spiritual connections with other people who are similar to themselves are so strong, so powerful, so complex, and so hard to understand, that in some ways their spiritual connections with other people are similar to what God was painted to be like in the myths.  And if their spiritual connections with other people are similar to God, then why not just say that it is God? 

As the 21st Century began it was becoming clear to many people that society was becoming increasingly less tolerant of people who expressed opinions that questioned the authority of the church or people who tried to act like the church did not exist.  Anyone who questions the authority of the church (such as atheists) or anyone who tries to go down their own path spiritually choosing to ignore the church (like the witches) needs to realize that the people in the church may have a lot more going on spiritually than appears to be the case.  The witches should be careful when they laugh at the people in the church for their lack of spirituality.  The people in the church are a united and a well established spiritual force that exercises a lot of spiritual power in the name of God while knowing in their hearts that they are only exercising spiritual power for their own selfish personal objectives.  When a witch ignores the power of the church they may very well get a curse tossed at them by the people in the church that is larger in scope and that is more dynamic than any curse that they have ever experienced before.  And they need to realize that they may not be able to fight off and resist the power of that curse.  And atheists need to be aware that if they continue questioning the authority of the church without realizing how much spiritual power that the people in the church are capable of exercising, they too may get a curse tossed at them that they will not be able to fight off and resist.  Witches have some understanding of the complex and dynamic nature of spiritual forces, but atheists often have trouble understanding that spiritual energy not only gets exchanged between people, but also that spiritual power can be destructive in nature.  In making their attacks on God, some atheists may have forgotten that getting rid of the myth of God does not get rid of the spiritual power that is harnessed by the people who profess to believe in God.  The spiritual power that is exercised by these people is not something to laugh at.  If a large number of people unite spiritually and try to hurt you with a curse, they can hurt you a lot.  If they want to hurt you with a spiritual curse, and if you do not have the spiritual resources to fight off and resist that curse, they could do a lot of spiritual and physical damage to you.

Many people who are interested in things of a spiritual nature are impressed by the courage that the witches and the atheists have demonstrated.  These two groups have made great strides in helping everyone to become more aware of the nature of their spirituality.  But witches and atheists need to remember that when they criticize or ignore the church they are making a lot of people really mad.  And they should not be surprised if someday a large rush of very deep, very dark, and very negative spiritual energy comes rushing into them and knocks them out.  Witches and atheists have made great strides in helping us to understand some of the spiritual things in our world that are hard to understand, but they should perhaps consider that the spiritual power of the people in the church might be stronger and might be more complex than they can imagine and that those people in the church can hurt them and will try to hurt them if they question the authority of the church or if they try to act like the church does not exist.

Arguments such as the one made above that claim that people in the church today may actually be high-powered witches who exercise spiritual power for their own selfish benefit have been made before.  But somehow the people in the church have always managed to defend themselves against these types of arguments in spite of the evidence that the arguments are based on the truth.  One of the techniques the church has used to protect itself from the accusations that have been made against it is to exaggerate the accusations in such a way that the accusations are made to appear to be ridiculous.

You may have been in a church meeting where the pastor said something like "people in the world today say that those of us in the church are the worst sinners of all.  They argue that we exercise spiritual power in the name of God when we are actually just exercising spiritual power for our own selfish benefit.  Now, if that was true, then we certainly would be the worst sinners of all.  What could be worse than that?"

After making the above argument the pastor will usually not even try to answer the question that he or she had posed, which was "what could be worse than exercising spiritual power in the name of God when you are actually just exercising spiritual power for your own selfish benefit?"  Instead, they will say something like "we don't have to prove ourselves to the world.  We know in our hearts that we are good people and that we are spiritual people, and we know in our hearts that there are a lot of people in the world who are a worse than we are".  A nice prayer will be prayed, a nice song will be sung and almost everyone in the audience will feel spiritually energized.  But there might still be one or two people in the audience who will not feel spiritually energized and who will wonder what it was that they just experienced.

The one or two people in the audience who did not find the pastor's sermon uplifting were probably people who were spiritually and psychologically vulnerable.  Those people shivered inside when they heard the pastor say "what could be worse than exercising spiritual power in the name of God when you are actually exercising spiritual power for your own selfish benefit?"  They knew that the pastor and the congregation did believe that there was something worse than exercising spiritual power in the name of God when you are actually exercising spiritual power for your own selfish benefit.  The spiritually and psychologically vulnerable people knew that the church was under attack and that the people in the church were constantly trying to drag down people who were spiritually and psychologically vulnerable so that they could say to the world "you think that we are bad?  Look at those spiritually and psychologically vulnerable people.  They are really bad.  They are dangerous, they are scary, and they are evil." 

Spiritually and psychologically vulnerable people shiver inside when they hear sermons such as the one described above because they know that if the people in the church are looking for scapegoats to take the blame for the sins of the church, then those people in the church are going to try to hurt them every chance they get.  The more they can hurt the spiritually and psychologically vulnerable people, the weaker those people will become.  And the weaker they become, the easier it will be for the people in the church to use them as scapegoats so that people do not think as much about the fact that people in the church today are in many ways just high-powered witches who exercise spiritual power in the name of God when they are actually just exercising spiritual power for their own personal benefit.

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Copyright Don Bergquist 2009