If Not God, Then What?

Column by Rev. Gretta Vosper on March, 18 2021

Using the word “god” to conjure an all-powerful deity with biblically-proportioned prejudices and condemnations is dramatically different from using the word “god” to call us to a “no matter what” sort of love. I talk about this a lot. About ditching archaic language. About reading more than just the Bible or not reading the Bible at all.

The Bible is Political

Column by Rev. Mark Sandlin on March, 4 2021

The Bible has a political agenda. Even with all the different writers who contributed to different books, there is a clear biblical bias against the powerful using their places of authority to step on those who are already suffering. That’s political.

The Powerful Medicine of the (Divine) Feminine

Column by Jennifer Wilson on June, 11 2020

I’m really interested in how we, and by we I mean seekers, teachers, preachers, clergy, laymen, mystics, atheists and everything in between, think and talk about the divine feminine.

Jesus: A Mutation of Consciousness – Part 1

Column by Joran Slane Oppelt on August, 15 2019

We know enough about politics to know when an idea’s time has come. We know enough about the principles that move and motivate people. They are the same today as they were 2,000 years ago. They are those universal principles found in Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs: fear, safety, community, belonging, status, esteem and actualization (another word for “becoming” or, possibly, “salvation”).

The Wild Christ

Column by Rev. Matthew Syrdal on May, 9 2019

The wild calls. That which we associate with the wild are those ‘spontaneities’ found in ever form of existence in the natural world, that which is uncontrolled by human dominance. Wild is that feral autonomy of the more-than-human world with an agency and feathered intelligence of its own. The wild flares forth in the numinous powers of the psyche, mirroring the wild and raw powers of the universe. The wild is pure nature, that which is completely uncontrolled by human consciousness or dominance.

Wrestling with the Bible

Column by Rev. Irene Monroe on October, 25 2018

Interpreting scripture as the “ ord of God” is always subjective and suspect in intent, whether it is being done in the ivy towers of seminaries or within the holy walls of sanctuaries. Interpreting scripture with menacing messages – and with litanies of dos and don’ts – is not about embracing and empowering all people, but about authority and power over certain groups of people. The authority of scripture does not lie in what God said. It lies in the hands of those in power who determine what God ought to say.

These times, They Are A’Changing

Column by Fred Plumer on October, 18 2018

I recently received a couple of emails from Progressing Spirit subscribers who reminded me of a song Bob Dylan wrote in the early sixties. It was the title track song of the album, “These Times, They Are A’Changing”. Most people who have commented on this particular recording believe the title track was designed to support and maybe even influence the social change movement that clearly was happening in the 1960’s. Bob Dylan took a lot of criticism in those days, but fifty years later he was honored with the Noble Prize in literature.  And I would argue, these times are truly “a’changing.”

Deep Ecumenism vs. Biblical Terror Texts

Column by Rev. Dr. Matthew Fox on June, 28 2018

Recently I underwent, along with about 225 other people, a very moving and powerful encounter in Deep Ecumenism or Interfaith in a synagogue in Ashland, Oregon.  We gathered Friday night with an opening Native American chant written by Chief Arvod Looking Horse and a simple Shabbath ceremony including the lighting of candles followed by my talk on Deep Ecumenism and Deep Ecology.

A Brief Exploration into the Gospel of Luke

Column by Rev. Deshna Charron Shine on April, 12 2018

I would like to take a moment to explore the Gospel of Luke. When I read Biblical passages these days, I am looking for the deeper meaning behind the words. Meaning, I am not just looking for the dates, context, and scribes, though these are important pieces to the puzzle. I am looking for what the crisis might have been that caused the author to write it and how does the scripture speak to that crisis. I am seeking the wisdom that the passages hold for me in the moment as I read them. The wisdom found in sacred texts can shift as the reader shifts…that is one of the reasons why they are still valuable to modern seekers.