How Religions Become Distorted

 

(This article is an excerpt from a spiritual biography that I'm writing about my spiritual teacher, Pearl Dorris.  I hope you find it helpful and inspiring. - Bill Gaum)

 

Pearl knew that most people are unaware of the role that the psychic-astral realm plays in introducing distortions into religions that are otherwise quite beneficial.  And unfortunately, by not understanding this process, we can easily condemn constructive, helpful spiritual paths, as well as their founders.

 

How does this happen?

 

Master souls such as the Buddha, Quan Yin, Jesus, Lao Tzu as well as Avatars such as Krishna, often bring pure spiritual teachings to the earth at a time when the existing religion, or religions, of that particular region have, over long ages, gradually become so distorted, that they are now doing little good.  Of course, these “new” teachings are always at their purest when the founder of the religion is still giving the instruction.  It is after this individual passes on, or as in the case of Jesus, Ascends, that the distortions gradually begin creeping in.  The closest disciples usually have the most heartfelt and clearest grasp of their teacher’s message, but even their understanding is not perfect.  Yet, it is up to these sincere ones to share the sacred truths with others who are interested.  These blessed ones do the best they can, but naturally the transmission of the message is somewhat flawed.  And the more time that passes between the original founder and succeeding generations, the more opportunity there is for distortions to slowly become an established part of the religion.

 

Early Stages

 

When the number of adherents to a particular religion reaches a large enough quantity, there is usually a desire on the part of some of the people to organize it in some fashion.  They feel that this will provide places of worship for them and allow those who seem to be more knowledgeable and adept in the teachings to dedicate their lives to instructing others in the elements of the religion.  These teachers in turn may be called “way-showers,” priestesses or priests, ministers, gurus, or some other term denoting their position of trustworthiness.  In this position they are now responsible for maintaining the purity of the teachings.  In the beginning stages, the newly organized church, sanga or community of the faithful, can be a tremendous blessing because the early leaders are generally sincere, selfless, humble, and wise.  But naturally, once there is an established, respected, and admired church hierarchy, other sincere, but less humble individuals in the community soon desire to become a part of the hierarchy.  Unfortunately, even though they mean well, not all of these are as wise or as pure as the first priestesses and priests.  Thus, as these new individuals gradually acquire positions of responsibility in the organization, more distortions are able to enter in.

 

"Power Seekers"

 

As the church or spiritual community grows and gradually gains a more important position in the existing regional culture, a few individuals who are strongly ego-centered and primarily interested in “power” oftentimes see the church as a means for satisfying their ambitions.  Thus, as they enter into the folds of the organization, it becomes even easier for additional distortions to creep in.  Meanwhile, of course, there are still many, very sincere, humble and selfless people, both in the hierarchy and the body of the church, who are doing their best to keep things on track.  Nevertheless, the “power seekers” continue working their way up into the church leadership.  And eventually, among these self-seeking individuals, there may be one or more who decide to collaborate with equally ambitious leaders within the surrounding civilian governments in order to carry out their personal goals of gaining greater prestige, influence, or power.

 

Political Ambitions

 

And, if there happens to be officials in high government positions, who are less than honorable, they may feel that there could be certain “advantages” in an alliance between church and state.  Consequently, they are often willing to give “official sanction” to the religion providing that they can “approve” of the doctrine.  So, a meeting is called and an “approved” church doctrine is drawn up which is based more on political considerations than spiritual ones.  Existing distortions that are politically expedient are retained, and new ones are sometimes purposely inserted.  Likewise, constructive spiritual teachings that are at variance with political goals may be diluted, altered, or eliminated.  And unfortunately, this new and “approved” doctrine - besides being a “watered-down,” distorted version of the originally pure spiritual teaching given by the religion’s founder - is now often unnecessarily complex because of the introduction of trivial or poorly understood rites and rituals.  (Evidently something like this happened to early Christianity during the First Council of Nicaea in 325 AD.)  These unnecessary rituals, of course, make the religion even less meaningful to the people.  This is not to say that appropriate, meaningful rituals do not have their proper place – the Great Ones assure us that they can be helpful to many people.  Amazingly, despite the steadily increasing number and degree of distortions, the religion at this point is usually still a significant blessing for its followers because to some extent it keeps their attention on GOD, and promotes behavior based on honesty, selflessness, kindness, compassion, fairness, and purity of heart.

 

Goal of the Lower Astral Forces

 

Unknown to just about everyone, including many of the individuals who introduced the various discrepancies into the church doctrine over the years, these distortions were actually carefully planned, “inspired,” and prompted by the black magicians and other dark forces within the astral-psychic realm.  By eliminating important spiritual truths, and substituting teachings that are counterproductive to our growth, they hope to delay our spiritual unfoldment, while diluting both the legitimacy and the spiritual power of the religion.  Naturally, their ultimate aim is either completely taking over of the hierarchy of the religion or if that's not possible, then the complete destruction of the religion.  And either way these dark lower astral forces want the elimination of the sincere, pure-hearted people who desire constructive spiritual paths and thus are in the way of their nefarious goals.

 

Alienation of Good People

 

Consequently, one of the main goals of the black magicians, and their students in physical embodiment, is the deliberate and carefully planned alienation of good sincere people from the church.  This goal can be achieved in many ways.  For example, the distortions that have gradually crept into these originally pure teachings often make these formerly great religions to now appear distasteful to sincere seekers.  Consequently, deeply spiritual individuals who are humble, thoughtful, and kind are often discouraged by the impure teachings, inaccurate religious dogmas, as well as the hypocrisy and the abuse of power by some church officials.  As a result, these gentle, sensitive, and sometimes saintly people are no longer attracted to the church, or its authority.  This of course is extremely unfortunate for the church, because these people would have been a great blessing to it.  Some of them may live quiet, humble lives, blessing their community in their own ways.  But very often many of them simply abandon their search for spiritual answers and meaning in life.  Instead, they become bogged down with mundane materialistic pleasures, desires, goals and values, which promise satisfaction, but which bring their inevitable feeling of inner emptiness and meaninglessness.  Others may begin searching for better, more reliable spiritual teachings.  Some of these might be fortunate and find a purer path.  But many others are attracted by “pseudo-sacred paths” which in reality are psychic-astral “traps” to divert people from the truth.  These misleading teachings seem at first to be more reliable, but they gradually and subtly cause us to become further blinded by the subtle deceitful suggestions from the lower astral that keep us enslaved to fear and doubt.  In extreme cases, some followers of some of these deceitful paths (which often promise extraordinary powers of influence over others) may even become adherents of black magic in one or more of its many forms.

 

And what about the good, sincere people who choose to stay within the church during such confusing times?  Naturally, they too are confronted with many problems.  With all the confusion of complex rites, impure teachings, and worldly policies, it is now easy to forget that the main purpose of a spiritual life is simply to develop a pure selfless heart filled with devotion to our Mother-Father GOD, as we kindly, humbly, wisely and selflessly serve all life around us.

 

Why Don't the Great Ones Stop This?

 

We might ask, “Why don’t our Ascended Sisters and Brothers simply step in and correct these deviations from the truth?”  As has been explained, our Loving and All-wise Creator, as well as the Arisen Ones, work in perfect harmony with the “Great Law of Our Beings.”  And since we are made in the “image and likeness” of our Mother-Father GOD, this means that we are Divine Beings with free will.  Therefore, our Creator and our Ascended Friends are continually helping us in endless ways - most of which we are unaware - but the “Great Law of Our Own Being” prevents them from interfering with our GOD given freewill.  Consequently, we often must learn the “hard way” by experiencing the effects of our own mistakes of ages past.  And as we have all discovered, this can be a very painful process indeed.

 

The Role of Saints

 

Nevertheless, our Divine Parent, as well as our Loving Arisen Sisters and Brothers, are fully aware of all that is going on down here.  And fortunately, they can see when our religions are in danger of deviating too far from their original pure truths.  At these times they assist exceptionally pure-hearted, courageous souls, who volunteer to come into physical embodiment to help restore the original purity of the religion’s teachings.  Naturally, once these individuals come into physical embodiment they do not remember that they have a divine mission.  However, they have such pure hearts and are so sincere that they end up achieving their goals simply by setting inspiring examples of humble, kind lives filled with devotion and helpfulness to their fellow human beings and other creatures.  These individuals are usually referred to as “saints,” or “saintly people,” and can be found in all religions.  While they often embody some combination of the three-fold activity of divine love, wisdom, and the right use of power, oftentimes one of these qualities will stand out above the rest.  For example, some, like Saint Francis are primarily embodiments of selfless love and compassion; others, like Joan of Arc are embodiments of selfless action (the right use of power); and still others, such as Hazrat Inayat Khan, the modern Sufi saint, are embodiments of spiritual wisdom.  Yet, all three kinds of saints possess each of these three divine qualities.  This writer considers Pearl Dorris to be one of these unusually pure and courageous souls.  Her strengths in this embodiment seemed to be primarily purity of heart, insightful spiritual wisdom, selfless action, and a remarkable ability to be an outpouring of a subtle, invisible, yet powerful divine energy.  There are also some saints who seem to embody in a balanced way, all three of these qualities of loving compassion, divine wisdom, and selfless action.  Mahatma Gandhi was such a soul.

 

The simple, humble, pure lives that these great souls live, end up reawakening higher ideals, feelings and goals, in those of us who learn about their lives.  They help us to once again feel that there is something greater to strive for, than just the selfish satisfaction of our various material desires that cause us so much trouble.  Consequently, we are inspired to strive for a higher, more divine way of living, which in turn restores greater inner peace and happiness to our lives.  In this way, the saints which appear in the various religions throughout the world, inspire both church authorities and lay people alike, to return to a greater emphasis on the simple, pure truths originally given by the religion’s founder.  But, gradually over succeeding generations, these simple lessons of purity, humility, devotion, and selfless service are again forgotten.  And then new “saints” have to come into embodiment to once again help restore the ideals of purity and simplicity back into our religions.  Of course, Christianity, like most other religions, has gone through the various processes described above.

 

Noble Inspiring Souls

 

Naturally, Pearly taught us that saintly people are also found outside of a religious framework.  They are the ones whose own selfless lives inspire others to likewise serve their communities.  Florence Nightingale and George Washington Carver are just a few of these noble souls.  Whether a saint belongs to a particular religion, or whether they are just good people doing good things, the benevolent activities that these various kinds of saintly lives inspire in the general population is absolutely vast.  In fact, it is so vast, that the Great Ones tell us that despite the efforts of the sinister force to distort and destroy Christianity, it, as well as the world’s other major religions have done far more good, than harm.  Without them, humanity would already have perished from the earth.

 

Our Ascended Sisters and Brothers also caution us to not focus too much on the harmful things which have occurred in the name of religion, because if we are not careful we can blind ourselves to the enormous good that religious teachings have accomplished, and are continuing to accomplish all over the world.  And of course if ministers, priests & church leaders will refocus their message back to loving kindness, mercy, compassion and helpfulness, etc, they can help undo the effects of the errors that have crept into church doctrine over the centuries.  Plus, Pearl shared that all we need to do is to sift out the true from the untrue in whatever religion attracts us, and then put the truth into practice in our everyday lives.

 

Likewise, Pearl urged all of us to develop better spiritual discernment and to use common sense so that we can more easily sort out the truly beneficial and reliable spiritual practices from the pseudo-spiritual ones, so that we can safely progress on our journey into the New Golden Age.

 

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By the way, Christian readers might want to read some little known insights into the genuine and marvelous blessings of the "Baptism of the Holy Spirit" that you probably didn't learn about in church - even when you were baptized.

 

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Pearls of Wisdom

 

· Sift out the true from the untrue in whatever religion attracts us, and then put the truth into practice in our everyday lives.

 

· Respect the good in all religions.

 

· Simplicity, purity of heart, and goodness are the secret of happiness.

 

· Church leaders need to shift their message back to loving kindness, goodness, forgiveness, humbleness, mercy & happiness, etc, in order to counteract the damage caused by the errors that have crept into the teachings of the church over the centuries.

 

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Copyright 2014 Bill Gaum All Rights Reserved