On salvation: A dialogue between seeker and sage.

Seeker: “What must I do to be saved?”

Sage: “Believe.”

Seeker: “What does it mean to believe?” (here the question is proper, but the answer can take many forms. We will skip the disastrous but common; merely pass without comment on the catastrophic but pervasive; leave to his folly the fool and his foolishness)

Sage: “To believe is to commit oneself, in action, to the deep truths. To believe is to organize oneself, in action, to the deep truths. To believe is to instantiate the deep truths.”

Seeker: “My whole self or only part of myself?”

Sage: “Your whole self of course.”

Seeker: “And such belief is inconsistent with wrongness?” (otherwise known as sin)

Sage: “Indeed, but it is complicated. What is essentially wrong it to grasp and hold tightly with will to internal states that guide toward wrong action. So, one can believe and be assaulted by lustful feeling. One cannot believe and grasp meditatively to lustful feeling.”

Seeker: “I think I understand. Ones sin is always in the response to what one is confronted with and not in the being confronted with.”

Sage: “Yes. Good.”

Seeker: “So, if belief is inconsistent with sin, and I, post any moment in time in which belief is attempted, sin, how am I to know whether my belief is adequate for acceptance by the god, adequate for salvation?”

Sage: silence.

Seeker: “Is there some verifiable amount of belief throughout a life of a given time and a given amount of confrontation, that counts as passing, nay overcoming, is sufficient for salvation?”

Sage: silence.

Seeker: “Master, speak! Do not forsake me in my insecurity! How I long to succeed.”

Sage: “I will say this much. You make a category mistake. You treat that which is immeasurable and only poetically conveyable as if it were measurable and literally conveyable. Only the limited and finite can be measured in amounts. This is an intellectual error. But far worse is the error of your passion. You have openly advertised that you desire security most, and righteousness for security, and belief for righteousness for security. At the root is corruption. If security is your goal, arm yourself. If purity is your goal, expose yourself and hug insecurity. One cannot have two masters.”

Sage to self (showing his humanity): “Note to self. When one asks about salvation, ask him what he means. Else, while you are thinking of the flowering of righteousness in the soul, the seeker will be asking about protection from punishment, protection from suffering, shelter from monsters, security. At such cross-purposes no progress can be made.

Published by Purilib

Anonymously interested in grasping the good life.

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