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Living in the capital—the centre of Hellenistic knowledge—and possessed of an uncommon beauty and intellect, Catherine received a most splendid of educations, having studied the works of the finest philosophers and teachers of antiquity. Young men from the most worthy families of the empire sought the hand of the beautiful Catherine, but none of them was chosen. She declared to her parents that she would be agreeable to enter into marriage only with someone who surpassed her in illustriousness, wealth, comeliness, and wisdom.
Catherine's mother, a secret Christian, sent her for advice to her own spiritual father—a saintly elder pursuing prayerful deeds in solitude in a cave not far from the city. Having listened to Catherine, the elder said that he knew of a youth who surpassed her in everything, such that "His beauty was more radiant than the shining of the sun, his wisdom governed all creation, his riches were spread throughout all the world—this however did not diminish but rather added to the inexpressible loftiness of his lineage."
The image of the heavenly Bridegroom produced in the soul of the holy maiden an ardent desire to see him. Truth, to which her soul yearned, revealed it to her. In parting, the elder handed Catherine an icon of the Mother of God with the God-Child Jesus on her arm and bid her to pray with faith to the Queen of Heaven—the Mother of the Heavenly Bridegroom—for the bestowing of the vision of Her Son
How does an infinite Spirit-God become a man of flesh? How does eternal God take the form of a time-bound creature? No one has been able to answer these basic questions about the Incarnation of Jesus Christ.
Christ’s Incarnation is even more puzzling in light of present-day knowledge. If Mary was a virgin and Jesus had no human father, where did Jesus get the rest of his genes? Was he only half a person, with genes alone from Mary’s egg? Was he Mary’s clone, somehow having all her genes? Or was he genetically engineered by God?
Modern genetics can actually answer these startling questions about Christ’s fatherless conception! When we carefully pair the truths of modern science with Scripture, the mystery of the Incarnation unfurls before our eyes.
Once we understand how Jesus' genome came to be, we also notice clues about his resurrection and immortality. Our genes die after a specific amount of time. What was different about Christ's genes that allowed them to go on endlessly--permitting his resuscitation after he died and his ability to live forever in his resurrected body?
Catherine prayed all night and was given to see the Most Holy Virgin, who sent her divine Son to look upon the kneeling of Catherine before Them. But the Child turned his face away from her saying, that he was not able to look at her because she was ugly, of shabby lineage, beggarly and mindless like every person—not washed with the waters of holy Baptism and not sealed with the seal of the Holy Spirit.
Catherine returned again to the elder deeply saddened. He lovingly received her, instructed her in the faith of Christ, admonished her to preserve her purity and integrity and to pray unceasingly; he then performed over her the mystery/sacrament of holy baptism. And again Saint Catherine had a vision of the Mother of God with her Child. Now the Lord looked tenderly at her and gave her a ring—a wondrous gift of the heavenly Bridegroom.
WE have seen in a former article ("The Bride of Christ," published in The Open Court for August) that the tradition of the bride of Christ has its ultimate foundation in the myths of pre-Christian saviours; but we noted at the same time that according to the rigidly ascetic traditions of the early Church this marriage was to be a purely spiritual and symbolic one; and that the legend finally crystallized around the name of Catharine the pure one, in spite of the incongruity of the age in which the best known saint of this name was supposed to have lived.
In the domain of myth as well as legend we move in an atmosphere that is above time and space, and so there is no inconsistency in the fact that St. Catharine of Alexandria lived at the end of the third century, more than two hundred years after the death of Jesus. This discrepancy only helped to denote the entire absence of carnal love which fact is further emphasized by representing the mystic marriage usually (though not always) as taking place between the Christ child and an adult virgin.
At this time the emperor Maximinus was himself in Alexandria for a pagan feast day. Because of this, the feast was especially splendid and crowded. The cries of the sacrificial animals, the smoke and the smell of the sacrifices, the endless blazing of fires, and the bustling crowds at the arenas filled Alexandria. Human victims also were brought—because they consigned to death in the fire the confessors in Christ, those not recanting from him under torture.
The saint's love for the Christian martyrs and her fervent desire to lighten their fate impelled Catherine to go to the pagan head-priest and ruler of the empire, the emperor-persecutor Maximinus.
Introducing herself, the saint confessed her faith in the one true God and with wisdom denounced the errors of the pagans. The beauty of the maiden captivated the emperor. In order to convince her and show the superiority of pagan wisdom, the emperor gave orders to gather 50 of the most learned men (rhetoricians) of the empire, but the saint got the better of the wise men, such that they themselves came to believe in Christ. Saint Catherine shielded the martyrs with the sign of the cross, and they bravely accepted death for Christ and were burnt by order of the emperor.
Maximinus, no longer hoping to convince the saint, tried to entice her with the promise of riches and fame. Having received an angry refusal, the emperor gave orders to subject the saint to terrible tortures and then throw her in prison. The Empress Augusta, who had heard much about the saint, wanted to see her. Having prevailed upon the military-commander Porphyry to accompany her with a detachment of soldiers, Augusta went to the prison. The empress was impressed by the strong spirit of St. Catherine, whose face glowed with Divine grace. The holy martyr explained the Christian teaching to the newly-arrived, and they in believing were converted to Christ.
On the following day they again brought the martyr to the judgement court where, under the threat of being broken on the wheel, they urged that she recant from the Christian faith and offer sacrifice to the gods. The saint steadfastly confessed Christ and she herself approached the wheels; but an angel smashed the instruments of execution, which broke up into pieces with many pagans passing nearby. Having beheld this wonder, the empress Augusta and the imperial courtier Porphyry with 200 soldiers confessed their faith in Christ in front of everyone, and they were beheaded.
Maximinus again tried to entice the holy martyr, proposing marriage to her, and again he received a refusal. St. Catherine firmly confessed her fidelity to the heavenly Bridegroom, Christ, and with a prayer to him she herself put her head on the block under the sword of the executioner. The relics of St. Catherine were taken by the angels to Mount Sinai. In the 9th or 10th century, through a revelation, the venerable head and left hand of the holy martyress were found and transferred with honour to the church of Sinai monastery, built by the holy emperor Justinian the Great in the 6th century.
"Once, when St. Catharine was praying fervently in her chamber, Jesus Christ, the King of Glory, appeared before her, clad in fine apparel and accompanied by a great throng of angels and saints. As testimony that he accepted St. Catharine for his bride he placed a real ring upon her finger and promised to perform great things for her if she would remain faithful in her love, and when our Lord Jesus Christ had disappeared she knew at once that vision was to be understood in a spiritual sense. She was completely converted to a great divine love and reverent tenderness toward Jesus Christ, her spouse.
From this time forth she often received great tasks of consolation from him, and in order that she might take comfort in him more fully she consecrated all her time and all her study and meditations to prayer and the reading and contemplation of Holy Scripture. As formerly she had studied most zealously and had become learned in vast numbers of volumes of profane science, now, after her conversion she applied herself to the books of Holy Scripture, especially to the writings of the Evangelists, giving to these her attention above all else.
She said to herself: 'Alas, sinner that I am, how long have I wasted my time in the darkness of profane books! Oh Catharine, here is the Gospel of thy spouse. Put all thy heart upon its teachings as faithfully, and constantly as thou canst in order that thou mayest attain the light of truth.'
1. “God has committed to her the treasury of all good things, in order that everyone may know that through her are obtained every hope, every grace, and all salvation. For this is his will, that we obtain everything through Mary.” (Pius IX: Encycl., Ubi primum, February 2, 1849.) — [p. 12, number 12]
2. “O Virgin most holy, none abounds in the knowledge of God except through thee; none, O Mother of God, obtains salvation except through thee, none receives a gift from the throne of mercy except through thee.” (Leo XIII: Encycl., Adiutricem populi, September 5, 1895.) — [p. 12, no. 13]
3. “With equal truth it may be said that of the great treasury of all graces given to us by Our Lord—for grace and truth came by Jesus Christ—nothing comes to us except through Mary’s mediation, for such is God’s Will. Thus, as no man goes to the Father but by the Son, so no one goes to Christ except through his mother.” (Leo XIII, Encycl., Octobri mense, September 22, 1891.) — [pp. 13,14, no. 19]
4. “If it is impossible to separate what God has united, it is also certain that you cannot find Jesus except with Mary and through Mary.” (St. Pius X: Allocution to the Franciscans, November 12, 1910.) — [p. 14, no. 20]
5. “Every day, as the Church herself recommends, priests will recite the Holy Rosary, which, by proposing for our meditation the mysteries of the Redeemer, leads us to Jesus through Mary.” (Pius XII: Exhortation, Menti nostri, September 23, 1950) — [p. 14, no. 23]
6. “As the various mysteries present themselves one after another in the formula of the Rosary, for the meditation and contemplation of men’s minds, they also make clear what we owe to Mary for our reconciliation and salvation.” (Leo XIII: Encycl., Fidentum Piumque, September 20, 1896.) [pp. 15,16, no. 29]
7. “God has committed to the Blessed Virgin Mary the treasury of all good things in order that everyone may know that through her are obtained every hope, every grace and all salvation.” (Pius IX: Encycl., Ubi primum, February 2, 1894) — [p. 18, no. 38]
8. “All our hope do we repose in the Most Blessed Virgin, in the all-fair and immaculate one who has crushed the most cruel serpent’s poisonous head and brought salvation to the world.” (Pius IX: Apost. Const., Ineffabilis Deus, December 8, 1854.) — [p. 18, no. 39]
9. “O Holy Mother of God; to thee we lift our prayers for thou, powerful and merciful, art the Mediatrix of our salvation.” (Leo XIII: Encycl., Jucunda semper, September 8, 1894.) — [p. 19, no. 43]
10.“None, O Mother of God, obtains salvation except through thee, none receives a gift from the throne of mercy except through thee.” (Leo XIII: Adiutricem populi, September 5, 1895) — [p. 19, no. 44]
11. “Whenever we speak of Mary or speak to her, let us not forget that she is really our Mother, for through her we received divine life. She gave us Jesus himself, the source of grace. Mary is a Mediatrix and Dispenser of Graces.” (Pius XII: Radio message to the Italian Catholic Action, December 8, 1953) — [p. 22, no. 59]
12. “Since Mary is ‘Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope,’ let us cry to her, ‘mourning and weeping in the vale of tears,’ and place ourselves and all that is ours confidently under her patronage.” (Pius XII: Mediator Dei, November 20, 1947.) — [p. 25, no. 71]
13. “The Catholic Church has always and with justice put all her hope and trust in the Mother of God.” (Leo XIII: Encyclical, Supreme Apostolatus, September 1, 1883.) — [p. 32, no. 104]
14. “According to the common teaching of the Doctors, it was God’s design that the Blessed Virgin Mary, apparently absent from the public life of Jesus, should assist him when he was dying nailed to the Cross. Mary suffered and as it were, nearly died with her suffering Son; for the salvation of mankind she renounced her mother’s rights and, as far as it depended on her, offered her Son to placate divine justice; so we may well say that she with Christ redeemed mankind.” (Benedict XV: Letter, Inter sodalicia, May 22, 1918.) [p. 35; no. 119]
15. “She it was who, immune from all sin, personal or inherited, and ever more closely united with her Son, offered him on Golgotha to the Eternal Father....” (Pius XII: Encyclical, Mystical corporis, June 29, 1943.) [p. 37; no. 128.]
16. “... it is evident that she cannot do other than help most devotedly her dearest adopted sons at an hour at which it is necessary to secure for them salvation and sanctity for all eternity.” (Benedict XV: Letter, Inter sodalicia, May 22, 1918.) [p. 46; no. 171]
17. “... It was before the eyes of Mary that the divine sacrifice for which she had borne and nurtured the Victim was to be finished. ... In the miracle of love, so that she might receive us as her sons ....” (Leo XIII: Encyclical, Jucunda semper, September 8, 1894.) [p. 50; no.187]
18. “Mary is all powerful with her divine Son who grants all graces to mankind through her ...” (Benedict XV: Encyclical, Fausto appetente die, June 29, 1921.) [p. 59; no. 244]
19. “From whom can we expect the salvation of the Christian people today if not from her of whom it is written that whosoever shall find her shall find life and shall have salvation from the Lord?” (Pius XI: Letter, Cum valde, Februrary 20, 1929.) [p. 59; no. 245]
COMMENT: The Scripture that is misapplied here to the Catholic Mary is Prov. 8:35 and really refers to wisdom.
20. “To Mary, who reigns in heaven, the humble yet higher than any creature, near his throne, God grants the custody of the treasures of his manifold graces.” (Pius XII: Allocution, April 21, 1940) [p. 62; no. 268]
21. “Are not Jesus and Mary the two sublime loves of Christian people?. ... One of them is the source and the other is the channel of grace for giving us a new birth into spiritual life.” (Pius XII: Allocution, April 21, 1940.) [p. 64; no. 277]
22. “... Yet our manner of praying to the Blessed Virgin has something in common with our worship of God so that the Church even addressed to her the words with which we pray to God: ‘Have mercy on sinners.’” (Leo XIII: Encyclical, Augustissimae, September 12, 1897.) [p. 68; no. 302]
23. “When we have recourse to Mary in prayer, we are having recourse to the Mother of Mercy, who is so well disposed towards us that, whatever the necessity that presses upon us, especially in attaining eternal life. ...” (Leo XIII: Encyclical, Magnae Dei Matris, September 8, 1892) [pp. 76,77; no. 350.]
24. “Are you hoping one day to reach Paradise through the grace of perseverance in the last moment of your lives? Are you trusting to die in the grace of God? This grace also will come to you, as those devoted to Mary, through a smile of hers, as a ray from that Sun.” (Pius XII: Radio message, December 8, 1953.) [p. 83; no. 383.]
The Monastery of St. Katherine is the oldest continuously inhabited monastery in the World and its library has the largest religious collection after the Vatican. It was built by the Byzantine Emperor Justinian in the 6th century AD, although there was already a church at the site of the Burning Bush erected by the Empress Helena in 330 AD. Byzantine Orthodox monasticism has even earlier roots, and the area is sacred to all three monotheistic religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam.
The monastery was under the protection of the Prophet Mohammed, Arab and Turkish leaders and Napoleon, which helped to preserve it virtually undameged. In the walled compound there is a Fatimid mosque built next to the Orthodox church, a rare coexistence of religions in today's World.
"This is a message from Muhammad ibn Abdullah, as a covenant to those who adopt Christianity, near and far, we are with them. Verily I, the servants, the helpers, and my followers defend them, because Christians are my citizens; and by Allah! I hold out against anything that displeases them.
No compulsion is to be on them. Neither are their judges to be removed from their jobs nor their monks from their monasteries.
No one is to destroy a house of their religion, to damage it, or to carry anything from it to the Muslims' houses. Should anyone take any of these, he would spoil God's covenant and disobey His Prophet. Verily, they are my allies and have my secure charter against all that they hate.
No one is to force them to travel or to oblige them to fight. The Muslims are to fight for them. If a female Christian is married to a Muslim, it is not to take place without her approval. She is not to be prevented from visiting her church to pray.
Their churches are to be respected. They are neither to be prevented from repairing them nor the sacredness of their covenants. No one of the nation (Muslims) is to disobey the covenant till the Last Day (end of the world)."
English translation from 'Muslim History: 570 - 1950 C.E.' by Dr. A. Zahoor and Dr. Z. Haq, ZMD Corporation. P.O. Box 8231 - Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8231 - Copyright Akram Zahoor 2000. P. 167.
The original letter was taken away in 1517 by the Turkish Sultan Selim I and is now in the Topkapi Museum in Instanbul, but the sultan gave the monks a copy of it and sanctioned its terms. From the enormous collection of ancient and modern rolls preserved in the monastery's library, it is clear that the Covenant of the Prophet, whether or not authentic, was in some way or other renewed, and the privileges of protection and safe-conduct for the monks were upheld.
"The Ministry of Culture, in cooperation with the custodians of the monastery, have announced a three-phase project, the first of which includes comprehensive documentation of all the manuscripts -- one of the richest monastic collections in the world and second in importance only to the Vatican. (...) Manuscripts in the library exceeded all previous estimates put forward in existing catalogues and hand-lists, which registered a total of about 2,000 codices.
The new study revealed that the Greek manuscripts alone numbered 2,250, Arabic manuscripts in the neighbourhood of 600, and Armenian, Coptic, Georgian, Polish, Slavic and Syriac numbering several hundred volumes."
Mount Sinai (Arabic: طور سيناء , Hebrew: הר סיני), also known as Mount Horeb, Mount Musa, Gebel Musa or Jabal Musa ("Moses' Mountain"), is the name of a mountain in the Sinai Peninsula that is purported to be the place where Moses spoke to God, saw the burning bush, and received the Ten Commandments.
Although the exact location of Mount Sinai is debated, and many mountains have been identified as this biblical site, the most common location is identified as Mount Horeb at 2,285 meters, found across from Mount St. Catherine, the tallest peak in the Sinai.
Mount Sinai is one of the world's many sacred places that have inter-faith significance for followers of more than one religion. The mountain still remains a pilgrimage site for Jews and Christians to this day.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Mount Serbal is a mountain located in Wadi Feiran in southern Sinai, sometimes identified in texts as Gebel Serbal. At 2,070 metres (6,791 ft) high, it is the fifth highest mountain in Egypt. It is part of the St. Catherine National Park. It is thought by some to be the Biblical Mount Sinai.
There were many granite dwellings on Mount Serbal which were inhabited by anchorites in early Christian times, and there are traces of a fourth-century monastery close to its base. It is likely that the many inscriptions (some in Greek) found on rocks at the foot of Mount Serbal and the path up to its peak date from these times. One spot on the path is called Mokatteb, or the valley of writing.
Mount Sinai, Egypt
"On the peak of Jebel Musa stands a small chapel dedicated to the Holy Trinity. This chapel, constructed in 1934 on the ruins of a 16th church, is believed to enclose the rock from which God made the Tablets of the Law. In the western wall of this chapel is a cleft in the rock where Moses is said to have hidden himself as God's glory passed by (Exodus 33:22).
Seven hundred and fifty steps below the summit and its chapel is the plateau known as Elijah's Basin, where Elijah spent 40 days and nights communing with God in a cave. Nearby is a rock on which Aaron, the brother of Moses, and 70 elders stood while Moses received the law (Exodus 24:14).
Northwest of Elijah's plateau hardy pilgrims visit Jebel Safsaafa, where Byzantine hermits such as St. Gregory lived and prayed. Beneath the 2168 meter summit of Ras Safsaafa stands the Plain of ar-Raaha, where camped the Israelites at the time Moses ascended the mountain and where Moses erected the first tabernacle."
The principal topographical features are two. North of the Jabal et-Tih (3200 to 3950 feet) stretches an arid plateau, the desert of Tih, marked by numerous Wadis, notably El-Arish, the "River of Egypt", which formed the southern boundary of the Promised Land (Genesis 15:18; Numbers 34:5).
South of Jabal et-Tih rises a mountainous mass of granite streaked with porphyry, dividing into three principal groups: the western, Jabal Serbal (6750 feet); the central, Jabal Musa (7380 feet), Jabal Catherine (8560 feet), and Jabal Um Schomer (8470 feet); the eastern, Jabal Thebt (7906 feet) and Jabal Tarfa, which terminates in Ras Mohammed.
It is among these mountains that Jewish and Christian tradition places the Sinai of the Bible, but the precise location is uncertain. It is Jabal Musa, according to a tradition traceable back to the fourth century, when St. Silvia of Aquitaine was there.
Jabal Musa is defended by E.H. and H.S. Palmer, Vigouroux, Lagrange, and others. However, the difficulty of applying Exodus 19:12, to Jabal Musa and the inscriptions found near Jabal Serbal have led some to favour Serbal. This was the opinion of St. Jerome (P.L., XXIII, 916, 933) and Cosmas (P.G., LXXXVIII, 217), and more recently of Birkhard and Lepsius, and it has of late been very strongly defended by G. Ebers, not to mention Beke, Gressmann, and others, who consider the whole story about Sinai (Exodus 19) only a mythical interpretation of some volcanic eruption.
The more liberal critics, while agreeing generally that the Jewish traditions represented by the "Priest-Codex" and "Elohistic documents" place Sinai among the mountains in the south-central part of the peninsula, yet disagree as to its location by the older "Jahvistic" tradition (Exodus 2:15, 16, 21; 18:1, 5). A. von Gall, whose opinion Welhausen thinks the best sustained, contends that Meribar (D. V. Temptation. - Exodus 17:14), that the Israelites never went so far south as Jabal Mûsa, and hence that Sinai must be looked for in Madian, on the east coast of Akabar.
Others (cf. Winckler, II, p. 29; Smend, p. 35, n. 2; and Weill, opp. Cit. Infra in bibliography) look for Sinai in the near neighbourhood of Cades (Ayn Qâdis) in Southern Palestine.
It is impossible to tell how old the legend of the mystic marriage may be, but it seems sure that as soon as it appeared on record it spread with great rapidity and became very soon afterwards well-nigh the most popular of all legends. Its popularity kept at its height between the fourteenth and sixteenth centuries, and we may not go astray if we assume that the currency of the unwritten tales prepared the rapid acceptation of the legend when it first made its appearance in literary shape.
Winding twisting and making more
DNA lives in our core
To magic and wonder it is the key
For we are so much more than what we see
Talk to yourself and listen too
There is so much more that you can do
A whisper in a quite place
Discovery in such a tiny space
Where God, our history, our true self sits
Awaiting your call to begin to assist
For you are in charge, you run the show
Wakeup your makeup and let yourself grow.
Statements of Empowerment
It has been discovered by Dr. Poponin, a renowned quantum physicist that DNA is susceptible to receiving information from an outside source, (www.rexresearch.com...) (www.soulsofdistortion.nl...) which leads me to believe that DNA indeed responds to outside communication.
With that in mind I began to talk to my own DNA. I began simply with statements of acknowledgement and empowerment. Believing that this communication is innate; I simply began having conversations with my DNA. I said or thought things like, “I know that you are building new DNA every second in every bit of me, so build new healthy strands”, “Build strands not in old patterns of disease but as whole and new”, “You know what you are doing, don’t be lazy and just copy old bad DNA, make new healthy strands.”
I feel in a way I am speaking from my DNA as I make these statements, for the wisdom of my higher self also resides within my DNA. Even going so far as to reminding my DNA to ‘wake me up’ to the things I may already know and stimulate my awareness to the synchronicities in my life. I find myself rambling on declaring statement after statement about what ‘I’ want my DNA to do. I am giving instructions to the powerful engine that is creating more DNA every second of every minute of every hour.
Underneath your skin is a bustling metropolis of 50 trillion cells, each biologically and functionally equivalent to a miniature human. Current popular opinion holds that the fate and behaviour of our internal cellular citizens are pre-programmed in their genes.
The notion that our fate is indelibly inscribed in our genes was derived from the now dated scientific concept known as genetic determinism.
Since James D Watson and Francis Crick’s discovery of the genetic code, the public has been programmed with the conventional belief that DNA ‘controls’ the attributes passed down through a family’s lineage, including dysfunctional traits such as cancer, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, and depression, among scores of others.
As ‘victims’ of heredity, we naturally perceive ourselves to be powerless in regard to the unfolding of our lives. Unfortunately, the assumption of being powerless is the road to personal irresponsibility: “Since I can’t do anything about it anyway.why should I care?”
Control above the genes
Just as the Human Genome Project got off the ground in the late 1980s, scientists began to acquire a paradigm-shattering new view of how life works. Their revolutionary research has become the foundation for a new branch of science known as epigenetic control, which has shaken the foundations of biology and medicine.
It reveals that we are not ‘victims,’ but rather ‘masters’ of our genes. The Greek-derived prefix epi- means ‘over’ or ‘above’. Consequently, the literal translation of epigenetic control is “control above the genes.” Genes do NOT control life; life is controlled by something above the genes. This knowledge of how life works provides the most important element in our quest for self-empowerment.
Environment and the genetic blueprint
The new science of epigenetics recognises that environmental signals are the primary regulators of gene activity. As described in my book, The Biology of Belief: Unleashing the Power of Consciousness, Matter and Miracles, cells read and respond to the conditions of their environment using membrane protein perception switches. Activated switches send signals to control behaviour and regulate the activity of the genes.
Amazingly, epigenetic information can modify or edit the readout of a gene blueprint to create over 30,000 different variations of proteins—the cell’s molecular building blocks—from the same gene.
This editing process can provide for normal or dysfunctional protein products from the same gene. You can be born with healthy genes and through epigenetic processes, express mutant behaviours, such as cancer. Similarly, you can be born with defective mutant genes, and through epigenetic mechanisms, create normal healthy proteins and functions.
Perceptions shape biology, behaviour
[color=gold]The conventional belief that the genome represents the equivalent of a computer’s ‘read-only’ program is now proven to be false. Epigenetic mechanisms modify the readout of genetic the code—which means that genes actually represent ‘read-write’ programs, wherein life experiences actively redefine an individual’s genetic expression. The ‘new’ biology is based upon the fact that perception controls behaviour and gene activity!
The control is with YOU
This revised version of science emphasises the reality that we actively control our genetic expression moment by moment throughout our lives. Rather than seeing ourselves as victims of our genes, we must come to own the responsibility that our perceptions are dynamically shaping our biology and behaviour.
As organisms experience the environment, their perception mechanisms fine-tune genetic expression to enhance their opportunities for survival. The expression of a healthy or diseased biology is directly influenced by the accuracy of an individual’s interpretation or perception of their environment. Misperceptions rewrite genetic expression just as effectively as accurate perceptions, yet with far graver, perhaps even life threatening consequences.
Columbia University Press, 1995 - 368 páginas
The Resurrection of the Body in Western Christianity, 200-1336
In The Resurrection of the Body Caroline Bynum forges a new path of historical inquiry by studying the notion of bodily resurrection in the ancient and medieval West against the background of persecution and conversion, social hierarchy, burial practices, and the cult of saints. Examining those periods between the late second and fourteenth centuries in which discussions of the body were central to Western conceptions of death and resurrection, she suggests that the attitudes toward the body emerging from these discussions still undergird our modern conceptions of personal identity and the individual.
Bynum describes how Christian thinkers clung to a very literal notion of resurrection, despite repeated attempts by some theologians and philosophers to spiritualize the idea. Focusing on the metaphors and examples used in theological and philosophical discourse and on artistic depictions of saints, death, and resurrection, Bynum connects the Western obsession with bodily return to a deep-seated fear of biological process and a tendency to locate identity and individuality in body. Of particular interest is the imaginative religious imagery, often bizarre to modern eyes, which emerged during medieval times.
Bynum has collected here thirty-five examples of such imagery, which illuminate her discussion of bodily resurrection. With this detailed study of theology, piety, and social history, Bynum writes a new chapter in the history of the body and challenges our views on gender, social hierarchy, and difference.
St. Bernard of Clairvaux.The lactation miracle.
St. Bernard of Clairvaux rwas the son of Burgundy nobles who after joining the church became an auster cleric and author who forswear wealth and images, is closely associated with the Knights Templar regarded as the author of the Templars rules and was one of the principal forces instigating the Second Crusade.
St. Bernard is also curiously connected to the Madonna or Vierge . There are two existing legends concerning lactation of St. Bernard. The first version describes how Mary appeared in a prayer to St. Bernard, and sprinkled milk from her breast on Bernard's lips. With this gesture she showed him that she is his "mother" and that she is prepared to mediate for him with her son. The second version describes how Bernard falls asleep between a prayer. Mary appeared and put her breast into his mouth in order to receive the wisdom of God.
Who Invented the Trinity?
The three monotheistic religions - Judaism, Christianity, and Islam - all purport to share one fundamental concept: belief in God as the Supreme Being, the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe. Known as tawhid in Islam, this concept of the Oneness of God was stressed by Moses in a Biblical passage known as the "Shema" or the Jewish creed of faith: "Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord." (Deuteronomy 6:4)
It was repeated word-for-word approximately 1500 years later by Jesus when he said: "...The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; the Lord our God is one Lord." (Mark 12:29)
Muhammad came along approximately 600 years later, bringing the same message again: "And your God is One God: There is no God but He, ..." (The Qur'an 2:163)
Christianity has digressed from the concept of the Oneness of God, however, into a vague and mysterious doctrine that was formulated during the fourth century. This doctrine, which continues to be a source of controversy both within and without the Christian religion, is known as the Doctrine of the Trinity. Simply put, the Christian doctrine of the Trinity states that God is the union of three divine persons - the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit - in one divine being.
If that concept, put in basic terms, sounds confusing, the flowery language in the actual text of the doctrine lends even more mystery to the matter:
It is said that Athanasius, the bishop who formulated this doctrine, confessed that the more he wrote on the matter, the less capable he was of clearly expressing his thoughts regarding it.
Trinity in the Bible
References in the Bible to a Trinity of divine beings are vague, at best.
In Matthew 28:19, we find Jesus telling his disciples to go out and preach to all nations. While the "Great Commission" does make mention of the three persons who later become components of the Trinity, the phrase "...baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost" is quite clearly an addition to Biblical text - that is, not the actual words of Jesus - as can be seen by two factors:
Baptism in the early Church, as discussed by Paul in his letters, was done only in the name of Jesus; and
The "Great Commission" found in the first gospel written, that of Mark, bears no mention of Father, Son and/or Holy Ghost - see Mark 16:15.
The only other reference in the Bible to a Trinity can be found in the Epistle of I John 5:7, Biblical scholars of today, however, have admitted that the phrase "...there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one" is definitely a "later addition" to Biblical test, and it is not found in any of today's versions of the Bible.
It can, therefore, be seen that the concept of a Trinity of divine beings was not an idea put forth by Jesus or any other prophet of God. This doctrine, now subscribed to by Christians all over the world, is entirely man-made in origin.
Although the New Testament does not use the word "Τριάς" (Trinity) nor explicitly teach it, it provided the material upon which the doctrine of the Trinity was formulated.
Reflection by early Christians on passages such as the Great Commission: "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit"[Matt 28:19] and Paul the Apostle's blessing: "The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all,"
[2 Cor. 13:13] while at the same time the Jewish Shema Yisrael: "Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one."[Deuteronomy 6:4] led the early Christians to question which way the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are in unity
Suzanne Haneef, in her book WHAT EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW ABOUT ISLAM AND MUSLIMS (Library of Islam, 1985), puts the matter quite succinctly when she says, "But God is not like a pie or an apple which can be divided into three thirds which form one whole; if God is three persons or possesses three parts, He is assuredly not the Single, Unique, Indivisible Being which God is and which Christianity professes to believe in." (pp. 183-184) ]/ex]
www.islamicweb.com...edit on 16-7-2012 by BIHOTZ because: (no reason given)
Typically, detractors opposed to the Trinity will immediately use the name of Constantine in an attempt to show how the Council of Nicea was used to promote a pagan concept of God. When someone does this, ask her how well she has studied the process of how the decision was made. Rarely have I found anyone able to explain the major players of the council (Alexander and Athanasius versus Arius), let alone the century the council took place (4th)!
The truth is that less than two dozen bishops (out of some 300) attending the council were ever in favor of Arianism, and by the time the council concluded, only two did not favor the Orthodox position. Truly Constantine’s goal was for reconciliation and had nothing to do with the decision made in Nicea, which was overwhelmingly confirmed in a fuller form at the Council of Constantinople in A.D. 381. As Steve Brandt points out,
“Constantine did play an important role at the Council. Eusebius of Caesarea reports that he played a key part in calming, convincing, and bringing all to agreement on contested points. The account of Eusebius fairly glows in regard to the Emperor, and he is portrayed as a key figure. It is nowhere suggested, however, that he was permitted to vote with the bishops nor that he used any form of force to obtain an outcome.”
While the word “Trinity” is never used in the Bible, neither is the concept “Heavenly Mother” nor “Paradise Earth” used in the Bible, even though some might argue these are biblically true ideas. Yet the Trinity clearly solves problems and is a correct belief based on the teaching of the Bible. It shows that, while there is one God (Deut. 6:4; Mark 12:29), there are three separate Persons who are fully and completely God. (Quick. Who raised Jesus from the dead? Of course, God the Father did according to Acts 3:15. But Jesus also raised Himself from the dead, according to John 2:19 and the Spirit gets credit in Romans 8:11.)
J.R.Edwards-Whitworth College in Spokane, WA
“The idea that the early church fabricated a portrait of Jesus that eventually resulted in the Nicene formulation of ‘true God of true God’ from a historical Jesus who was simply a first-century Jew about whom little was known, and who was either uncertain or confused about his identity, is a highly improbable—and unadvised—leap of faith. It is not surprising that an imposing line of biblical scholars has opposed it for nearly two centuries.”
Mount Sinai – The Traditional Locations
The traditional Mount Sinai (also known as Mount Musa) lies at the southern end of the Sinai Peninsula, rising to 7,497 feet. Nearby are Mount Catherine, the tallest mountain in the region at 8,625 feet, and Mount Serbal, with an elevation of 6,750 feet. A popular tourist and pilgrimage spot because of its alleged relation to Biblical history, Mount Sinai in “recent” tradition has been regarded as a mountain at the southern tip of the Sinai Peninsula based on beliefs established long after the Old Testament was written.
A monastery was originally established in the 4th century AD at Mt. Serbal, then moved in the 6th century to nearby Mt. Catherine based on the writings of Josephus Flavius claiming that Mt. Sinai was the tallest mountain in the area. The adjacent Mt. Moses, the current popular site and the location favored in Bedouin tradition and the Quran, was supposedly chosen by Helena of Constantinople, mother of Emperor Constantine the Great, in about 330 AD. The pilgrim Egeria (also called Aetheria), who travelled the Holy Land in about 381-384 AD, also believed Mt. Musa (Mount Moses) was Mount Sinai.
Mount Sinai – The Location Controversy
Regardless of this varied tradition regarding the location of Mount Sinai, there is no archaeological or definitive ancient textual evidence for any of these locations. As such, the precise location of Mt. Sinai is highly disputed. Recently, scholars have argued for various locations of the true Mount Sinai, with the two areas of northeast Sinai Peninsula and northwest Saudi Arabia being the most popular alternative locations.
The reasoning for Mt. Sinai being located in northwest Saudi Arabia comes from the Apostle Paul’s writing in Galatians 4:25, which says, “Now Hagar stands for Mount Sinai in Arabia” and the fact that there are volcanic mountains to explain the fire and glory of God in Saudi Arabia, but not in the Sinai Peninsula
Early Old Testament text describes Mount Sinai in terms which some scholars believe may describe the mountain as a volcano, although the word is omitted.[need quotation to verify] This theory is not shared by all scholars.
Sinai looks like nothing so much as the surface of the moon. So the theory says that the name Sinai derived from the lunar deity Sin. Early inhabitants, worshipping the Trinity: Sin (Moon), Shamash (Sun) and Ishtar (Venus) named the peninsular after the moon-god Sin.
he pagan system of sun worship had three main aspects: the father, mother, and the son. In ancient Chaldean times, these were the god Bel or Merodach, Ninus the son who was also worshiped as Tammuz, and the female goddess Rhea who was also worshiped as Ishtar, Astarte, or Beltis. She was also referred to as the “queen of heaven,” and the “wrath subduer.” Mary has received these same names in Catholicism.
Mother and child worship was the basis of the ancient religions. In the various religions of the world, the same system of worship was perpetuated under different names. In Egypt , the mother and child were worshiped as Isis and Osiris or Horus, in India as Isi and Iswara, in China and Japan as the mother goddess Shing-moo with child, in Greece as Ceres or Irene and Plutus, in Rome as Fortuna and Jupitor-puer, or Venus and Adurnis, and in Scandinavia as Frigga and Balder. The mother and child were worshiped in Babylon as Ishtar and Tammuz, and in Phoenicia, as Ashtoreth and Baal. Moreover, the child was worshiped as both husband and son of the mother goddess.
The male component is a counterfeit of Jesus Christ. The Biblical names used for Jesus were also used for the child in ancient religions. Zoroaster was referred to as the seed, Mithra the Persian sun god was referred to as the Saviour, Dionysus as the sin-bearer, Bacchus as the branch, Vishna as the victim-man, and Osiris as the king of kings.
The Legend of Nimrod
The system of worship has its origin in the legend of Nimrod and his wife Semiramus. Nimrod (the great-grandson of Noah) rebelled against God, like his father Cush. Eventually Nimrod was put to death for his evil deeds, and according to the ancient patriarchal system, parts of his body were sent to various cities as a warning.
His wife Semiramus fled, but spread the rumour that he had ascended to heaven, where he had become one with the sun. When Semiramus later gave birth to a son, she claimed that it was the reincarnation of her deified husband, and that he had returned to save the human race.
She was later deified as the mother of the sun god, and it was supposed she had ascended into heaven as the queen of heaven. In the various cultures throughout history and around the world, the same basic deities have been worshipped under different names.
The Triple Goddess is the subject of much of the writing of Robert Graves, and has been adopted by many neopagans (notably Wiccans) as one of their primary deities . The term triple goddess is infrequently used outside of Neopaganism to instead refer to historical goddess triads and single goddesses of three forms or aspects.
In common Neopagan usage the three female figures are frequently described as the Maiden, the Mother, and the Crone, each of which symbolises both a separate stage in the female life cycle and a phase of the moon, and often rules one of the realms of earth, underworld, and the heavens.
These may or may not be perceived as aspects of a greater single divinity. The feminine part of Wicca's duotheistic theological system is sometimes portrayed as a Triple Goddess, her masculine counterpart being the Horned God.
The Matres or Matronae are usually represented as a group of three but sometimes with as many as 27 (3 x 3 x 3) inscriptions. They were associated with motherhood and fertility. Inscriptions to these deities have been found in Gaul, Spain, Italy, the Rhineland and Britain, as their worship was carried by Roman soldiery dating from the mid 1st century to the 3rd century AD. Miranda Green observes that "triplism" reflects a way of "expressing the divine rather than presentation of specific god-types.
"The religious iconographic repertoire of Gaul and Britain during the Roman period includes a wide range of triple forms: the most common triadic depiction is that of the triple mother goddess" (she lists numerous examples).
Our Dark Lady of the Tower of Song has been known throughout the ages under many different guises (including Shakespeare's "Dark Lady"). As the "Queen of the Night," she was worshipped early as the Moon-Goddess, Love-Goddess, Wisdom Goddess, and Underworld Goddess, such as Ishtar, Astarte, Inanna, Ashtoreth, Cybele, Isis, Hecate, Selene, Venus-Aphrodite, Diana.
Much later, in the Middle Ages, this pagan Underworld Goddess, turned up in cave sanctuaries in the South of France, now worsipped by Cathar-Troubadours as "Black Sophia," which was the archetype of the recently rediscovered (Christian) "Black Madonnas" of Europe. She became associated with Mary Magdalene of the Bible, of whom legend tells arrived in the South of France to initiate the Holy Grail tradition and to inspire the buliding of a secret tower-library ("Tour Magdala").
It is the message of this essay that, with the introduction of the Troubadour’s “Lady of Thought” into Western culture, we witness the return—an archetypal “return of the repressed”—of a divine figure that the Church tried countless times in vain to suppress, but who the once-pagan people fashioned again as the “Black Madonnas,” which have been recently rediscovered in churches all over Europe.
"Redemptoris Mater," delivered on March 25, 1987 , Pope John Paul II wrote,
"The piety of the Christian people has always very rightly sensed a profound link between devotion to the Blessed Virgin and worship of the Eucharist: . . . Mary guides the faithful to the Eucharist."
Plans are proceeding for a global communion service headed by Rome and the torn down walls of denominationalism apparently aren't keeping any of these denominations from participating. Is this the fulfillment of St. John Bosco's Catholic prophecy? It appears that it is.
TOTUS TUUS EGO SUM: "I am all yours," "I am completely yours, O Mary"
The second aspect of Bosco's prophesy was the anchoring of the Papal boat to Marian devotion. Global Communion was the first. With inquiry and discernment seemingly disappearing in the winds of change, few seem to realize that that the Pope's total guidance is coming from "Mary," and that this radical commitment to her has brought all who are uniting with him under the headship of Mary. They may not realize it, but that doesn't make it less true. Pope John Paul II is strongly committed to her and her guidance. To the Pope, Jesus is to be celebrated in the year 2000, but it is only Mary who can lead the united Church to Him.
Early Influences In The Life Of John Paul II Toward Marian Devotion
The first thing we must realize about Pope John II is that his early life as a Catholic was affected by Marian beliefs, centering finally in the devotions of Marian mystic, St. Louis De Montfort. In a "written interview" ("The Mother Of God") with Vittorio Messori about the Pope's book, "Crossing The Threshold Of Hope," Messori says of the Pope,
"The renewal of Marian theology and devotion - in continuity with Catholic tradition - is another distinctive characteristic of the teaching and pastoral activity of John Paul II. Totus Tuus ('I am completely yours, O Mary') is the motto you chose for your papacy. . . ."
In a written response, Pope John Paul II explained that the phrase "Totus Tuus. . . . is not only an expression of piety, or simply an expression of devotion. It is more":
"During the Second World War, while I was employed as a factory worker, I came to be attracted to Marian devotion. At first, it had seemed to me that I should distance myself a bit from the Marian devotion of my childhood, in order to focus more on Christ. Thanks to Saint Louis of Montfort, I came to understand that true devotion to the Mother of God is actually Christocentric, indeed, it is very profoundly rooted in the Mystery of the Blessed Trinity, and the mysteries of the Incarnation and Redemption.
The "miracle at Fatima" is arguably the most well-known apparition of the Blessed Mother. Her appearance to three shepherd children in Portugal in 1917 was, according to many witnesses, accompanied by several unexplained events, including a shared vision of the sun dancing and moving about erratically in the sky.