Tid Bits Gathered Here and There


What does Easter mean to you? Do you always go to church to celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus? Do you like this time of year because people ask you to come to Easter dinner after going to church? Do you like the Easter Egg Hunt? Do you like to dress in your Easter finery and show off at church or other places? Doesn’t make any difference if the finery came from the most exclusive dress shop or from a resale shop. It is new to you, so you show off. Is it a time of year that your thoughts turn to the less fortunate and you volunteer your time to help others? Is it the time of year when you begin thinking of renewal or rebirth and see all the new growth of plants and trees budding and the sun staying longer in the heavens? Is it the time of year you ‘spring house clean" after the long winter months of the house being shut up tight? Is it also the time of year you put away all the winter clothes that you are now really tired of wearing? Is it the time of year when you want to go to a farm or zoo and see babies being born? Do you always do the same thing year after year to celebrate this time of year? Does this time of year start you thinking of your own mortality and how old you are and what you have accomplished? Does this time of year bring on ‘spring fever’ and you can’t seem to keep your mind on anything for any length of time?

Easter means many things to many people and yes it does set us to thinking about many things we would like to do and some that we have not accomplished. If you are one who only goes to church two times a year, Christmas, the birth of Jesus and Easter, the death and resurrection of Jesus, why? If you are one who always goes to the same church or same religion during this time of year, why? If you are one who goes to church because you think you are suppose to and yet leave or move your coat next to you when someone you really don’t want sitting next to you, why? If you are one who volunteers at church at this time of year simply to get away from home because there will be no questions asked, why?

This is a lot of questions and hopefully they will cause you to start thinking. Why is this time of year significant to you? You might be surprised if you were to jot down the answers to these questions, truthfully without thinking about them a long time before answering.

Let’s just take a few and answer them right now. Some of you would never dream to go to any other church or religion at this one of the most important days in the year. Yet, you only go on two days a year. You feel almost aghast at thinking why anyone would even ask. Grow a little! Go to another denomination and really listen to what is being said. You don’t have to believe everything they say but at least open yourself enough to go. You might find that you learn something or you even have something in common. If you don’t want to do this in your own home town. Go out of town to another church. Really listen with your heart! You can compare after you are back home, for now just listen. Be compassionate enough to allow others to believe as strongly as you do. Resist from stating that your way of believing is the only one. You just might be surprised.

Some of my fondest memories in my adult life were when I completely immersed myself in volunteering at an Episcopal church. We celebrated both ‘high’ and ‘low’ church, one having a lot or ritual and ancient wording and the other more common. I thoroughly enjoyed both. I especially liked this time of year because the theme was over a period of time. Spending the day and night of Maundy Thursday was very personally satisfying to me. I was helping to keep a prayer vigil like so many around the world but I was also going into deep levels of meditation and having some wonderful experiences. It was the quiet time and people left you alone and didn’t bother with small talk. During this same time I was on Altar Guild and helped set up the altar and sacraments and laying out the garments for the priest to wear.

In my present job I interact with older people on all levels, financial, ethnic, religious and social groups and one of my ‘unwritten’ job descriptions is to attend funerals when they or their family passes over. This has allowed me to attend many various churches at all times of year. Because of this I have become much more knowledgeable and far more tolerant.

Perhaps the reason for my writing this article in this manner is to help some of you get out of a rut. Believe what you want to believe but KNOW WHAT YOU BELIEVE. For your own spiritual growth you owe it to yourself to ‘taste the spiritual food’ being offered at various places of worship. Be open and listen with your heart not your ears. Explore all the possibilities, become non judgmental and adopt unconditional love. If that isn’t possible at least learn tolerance. You might find that you really don’t have a certain belief but one that is eclectic and incorporate small bits from many. Then you are truly growing.

What does all this have to do with Easter? It is a time of reflection. It is a time of beginning anew. It is a time of believing we are recharged, or recreated or reincarnated. Actually, we are renewed or re energized each and every morning when we awaken. After a period of rest, sleep or winter, we are resurrected and come alive with new vigor and meaning. This might be done in a ritualistic manner such as re enacting the death and resurrection of Jesus as they do in the Philippines or in ritual for Spring Equinox honoring the Spring goddess Eastre. It might be done in cultivating the ground, making it ready to plant and sowing the seed for harvest later.

The Standard college dictionary describes the words,
A) resurrection;
1, A rising again from the dead.
2, The state of those who have risen from the dead.
3, Any revival or renewal as of a practice or custom after disuse, decay etc.; restoration; rebirth.
4, In Christian Science, material belief yielding to spiritual understanding.

B) renew:
1, To make new or as if new again; restore to a former or sound condition.
2, To begin again, resume;
3, To repeat: to renew an oath;
5, To cause to continue in effect; extend; to renew a subscription;
6, To revive; reestablish;
7, To replenish or replace as provisions;
8, To become new again;
9, To begin or commence again.

C) Crucifixion,
1) The act of crucifying or the state of being crucified.
2) Extreme persecution or suffering.

The Unity Metaphysical Bible Dictionary describes the word resurrection as follows. The raising of man’s mind and body from sense to spiritual consciousness. This is accomplished by the quickening power of the Holy Spirit. (Rom. 8:11)

The resurrection is the lifting up of the whole man into the Christ consciousness. The whole man is spirit, soul, and body. The resurrection lifts up all the faculties of mind until they conform to the absolute ideas of Divine Mind, and the renewal of the mind makes a complete transformation of the body so that every function works in divine order and every cell becomes incorruptible and immortal. The resurrection is an organic change that takes place daily in all who are conforming their lives to the regenerating Truth of Jesus Christ. The resurrection takes place here and now in all who conform their lives to the spiritual law under which it works.

Old limited personal relationships do not continue in the resurrection. Those who are being rasied into the Christ consciousness will gradually as their growth in understanding makes it possible, let go all that is personal and selfish in their relaitonship and come into the larger love, the love universal, where all who do the will of God are fathers and mothers and brothers and sisters. The divine law is fulfilled by the love universal.

Crucifixion described also from the Metaphysical Bible Dictionary. The giving up of the whole personality.

Religion is not something that you and I can touch. Religion is the worship of God--therefore a matter of conscience. I alone must decide for myself and you for yourself, what we choose.

Mother Teresa of Calcutta

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