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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yte-ad6Y31s

Bart D. Ehrman is a barren fig tree.

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew%2021%3A18-22&version=NIV

John in his first letter wrote we need not any man to teach us for the breath with which we are anointed is our teacher.

Emo Philips sent me a postcard on which he wrote, “I honestly believe you are the greatest teacher I know for only you preach the evil of teaching. Well, not only you. David Mamet in his new book TRUE AND FALSE confirms everything you have been saying all along.” Mamet writes, “Invent nothing. Deny nothing. Stand up. Speak up. Stay out of school.” “You have the wrong attitude. If you leave this school today you will starve to death in two weeks. Where do you think you are going? I have not given you permission to leave,” roared my high school principal.” To see if you are right,” I replied. Had I not left I would have starved. Hunter S. Thompson (FEAR AND LOATHING IN LAS VEGAS) in his high school year book at 17 wrote, “So we shall let the reader answer the question for himself, ‘Who is the happier man? He who has braved the storm of life and lived, or he who has stayed securely on the shore and merely existed?” I chose the storm. I choose the storm. Ellis Marsalis said to his sons Branford, Delfeayo and Wynton, “Most teachers say you should go to school to get your degree to have something to fall back on. Aside from being a huge lie, that also creates a very high level of mediocrity, because nobody who really believes that is going to take the leap of faith required to be a serious artist. Stay out of school.”

We know a person by trusting them. We know Jesus by trusting Jesus. We trust Jesus by turning the other cheek, by walking the second mile, by doing good to those who do us wrong.

In 1980 walking up the street I saw a small dog get run over by the front and rear wheels of a car. To my surprise it was not killed. It got up. It went back to where it had come from. I went to it. It was barking madly. It snapped its jaws fiercely. I bent down to its level. I moved my hand, palm down, towards it. As I did it snapped its jaws at me. I sad over and over softly, “It is okay.” As my palm got closer the barking and snapping got fiercer and fiercer. Finally its jaws snapped shut on my hand. I said softly, “It is okay.” The dog calmed down completely. On one finger was just the slightest dent in the flesh. That is how much self control that animal had. Its owner came out. I told her what had happened. In that moment I understood the crucifixion. We live in a wounded world which desperately needs someone it can trust. Christ is that someone. We are, I am. the body of Christ. We are, I am, called to Cavalry and the cross.

In 2017 after the death of a much beloved cat I adopted one who was his twin. His name was Zorro. Zorro arrived angry. He had been hurt and hurt deeply. He bit, clawed, hissed and scratched. My hand puffed up from his bites. I had to take medication. I thought it would take over a year for him to come around. I took him to a groomer as his fur was matted. She said, “I have only met one cat I could groom.” I left him with her. When I got home the phone rang. She said, “I have met the second one.” She said I should have him sedated by a vet and then given a lion cut (have his fur shaved). The third time Zorro bit me I said to him softly, “You know, it is okay.” In that instant he had a complete change of heart for the better. From that second he spent every moment as close to me as he could. I groomed him myself.

We know God by trusting God.

All of academia is the barren fig tree.

Read John Taylor Gatto’s UNDERGROUND HISTORY OF AMERICAN EDUCATION and his essay AGAINST SCHOOL.

“School is an institution built on the axiom that learning is the result of teaching. And institutional wisdom continues to accept this axiom, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary,”–Ivan Illich.

“It is, in fact, nothing short of a miracle that the modern methods of instruction have not entirely strangled the holy curiosity of inquiry; for this delicate little plant, aside from stimulation, stands mainly in need of freedom; without this it goes to wrack and ruin without fail. It is a very great mistake to think that the enjoyment of seeing and searching can be promoted by means of coercion and a sense of duty.”– Albert Einstein.

“My schooling not only failed to teach me what it professed to be teaching, but prevented me from being educated to an extent which infuriates me when I think of all I might have learned at home by myself.”–George Bernard Shaw.

“Men are born ignorant, not stupid. They are made stupid by education.”–Bertrand Russell.

“School is an institution built on the axiom that learning is the result of teaching. And institutional wisdom continues to accept this axiom, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary,”–Ivan Illich.

“We get three educations. The first is from our parents; the second is from our schoolmasters. The third is from life. The last makes liars of the first two.”–Montesquieu.

Jane Jacobs whose books, from her first, THE DEATH AND LIFE OF THE GREAT AMERICAN CITIES to her last, DARK AGE AHEAD, are must reading, states, “I had wonderful teachers in the first and second grades who taught me everything I know. After that, I’m afraid, the teachers were nice, but they were dopes…I have a lack of ideology, and not because I have an animus against any particular ideology; it’s just that they don’t make sense to me…they get in the way of thinking. I don’t see what use they are…University and uniformity, as ideals, have subtly influenced how people thought about education, politics, economics, government, everything…We are misled by universities and other intellectual institutions to believe that there are separate fields of knowledge. But it’s clear there are no separate fields of knowledge. It is a seamless web.”

Yes, seamless like the robe Jesus wore.

In 1968 Jane Jacobs brought her family to Toronto to keep her sons from being killed in Vietnam. That year she came to a program I gave. She became a friend and a mentor. Years later over a beer or for in her home she said, “The best part of what you offer is what you have to say.” Not too shabby for someone supposed to be dead two weeks after walking out of school.

“We have the seed of God in us,” writes Meister Eckhart, “Pear seeds grow pear trees. Hazel seeds grow hazel trees. God seeds grow God.” Trust the seed in you. That trust from us is the semen it needs to ignite the spark.

There is a saying, “The nearer the church/synagogue/temple the farther from Allah/The Buddha/God.”

For this reason I stay way from churches, synagogues and temples.

Charles Chaplin grew up white trash in the slums of London. In his MY AUTOBIOGRAPHY he wrote that he thought the doors open to the children of the rich closed to him until he read Ralph Waldo Emerson’s essay, ON SELF RELIANCE. He wrote, “It was as if I had been handed a golden birthright.”

“The reliance on Property, including the reliance on governments which protect it, is the want of self-reliance.” Ralph Waldo Emerson writes in ON SELF-RELIANCE, “Insist on yourself; never imitate. Your own gift you can present every moment with the cumulative force of a whole life’s cultivation; but of the adopted talent of another you only have an extemporaneous half possession. That which each can do best, none but his Maker can teach him. No man yet knows what it is, nor can, till that person has exhibited it. Where is the master who could have taught Shakespeare? Where is the master who could have instructed Franklin, or Washington, or Bacon, or Newton? Every great man is unique. The Scipionism of Scipio is precisely that part he could not borrow. Shakespeare will never be made by the study of Shakespeare. Do that which is assigned you, and you cannot hope too much or dare too much…

“Whoso would be a man, must be a nonconformist. He who would gather immortal palms must not be hindered by the name of goodness, but must explore if it be goodness. Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind. Absolve you to yourself, and you shall have the suffrage of the world. I remember an answer which when quite young I was prompted to make to a valued advisor who was wont to importune me with the dear old doctrines of the church. On my saying, ‘What do I have with the sacredness of traditions, if I live wholly from within?’ my friend suggested, ‘–But these impulses may be from below, not from above,’ I replied. ‘They do not seem to me to be such; but if I am the Devil’s child, I will then live as one from the Devil.’ No law can be sacred to me but that of my own nature. Good and bad are but names transferable to that or this; the only right is what is after my constitution; the only wrong what is against it…I am ashamed to think how easily we capitulate to badges and names, to large societies and dead institutions.”

I love the courage in “If I am the Devil’s child, I will then live as one from the Devil.’

A few years ago one of Canada’s television networks called. They said they had seen good things about my work on the web. They wanted to do a story.

After they hung up I did a web surf. I found lots of poison from the ‘anonymice” who proliferate the web.

I also found myself listed among the most famous male speakers of all time. Not too shabby for someone who was supposed to starve to death two weeks after walking out of school and who works out of an old row-house in Toronto promoting his events mainly through the use of street flyers: https://www.ranker.com/list/famous-male-orators/reference?page=3 .

A while back I was invited to teach at one of Canada’s major universities. The caller said, “You will like it here. We get the cream of the crop. We get one ones with money.”

I went over to see if they were as silly as they sounded.

At the time I had been hailed a a genius in Canada’s national newspaper, THE GLOBE AND MAIL, for the programs I was running out of public house.

“Must you show you do your programs in public houses and taverns?” said a religious professional.

I replied, “You know, when our lord walked into a church, a synagogue or a temple people picked up whatever was handy. They threw him out. When he walked into public houses and taverns they made him welcome. Where he was I AM.”

The person replied, “You are the rudest person I have ever met.

I said, “Thank you.”

As I left the person who had invited me said, “You know your name is mud on this campus.”

I replied, “Good. If it were any other colour I could not wear it with pride.”

Bart D. Ehrman is the barren fig tree. Those who look to him for sustenance find nothing.

We who look to Jesus find more than we need.

In 1992 I self-published a free verse re-telling of THE EPIC OF GILGAMESH.

Al Aronowitz, the journalist who introduced Bob Dylan to THE BEATLES and THE BEATLES and Mick Jagger to Miles David said, “It made me tingle.”

Judith Merril, the mother of modern SF, read it. She said, “It’s a page turner.”

John Herbert, author of the only play by a Canadian the entire world stood up and saluted (FORTUNE AND MEN’S EYES) read it. He said, “Magical. Very, very powerful.”

At a presentation of it I gave one man said after hearing it, “You are a Crazy-Wisdom-Yogin.”

I said, “I hear crazy often enough. What does the rest of that mean?”

He said, “It is the highest compliment I, as a Buddhist, can pay. It means you are living absolutely the life you are teaching. If you quote me put a flame after my name to indicate my rank.” His name was Jerzy Zaborski. He accompanied the Dalai Lama on his first journey across Canada.

I replied, “I would not say that because I know how far below the mark I fall. But I am making the effort. Anything less is hypocrisy. Would you are for a beer?”

Luckily he did. We talked until dawn about things few dream about.

In 1970 on route by bus from Toronto Hollywood I took with me only one book, a copy of THE NEW TESTAMENT. By the time I got there I had read through cover five times. I did not read it to find Jesus nor to find God. I read it as a book. I read to to find out for myself what it has to say.

I fell in love with what Jesus has to say.

I don’t need more than that.

I don’t need the resurrection although I know that in that moment of his resurrection the cosmos experienced an event horizon, a moment just like the original moment of creation but a moment in which everything was born again.

Trust the seed that is in you.

Watch as it bears fruit.

Please, stay out of school.

Until One Is Committed

Until one is committed there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamt would have come his way. I have learned a deep respect for one of Goethe’s couplets: Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. –W. H. Murray, THE SCOTTISH HIMALYAN EXPEDITION.

 

Jesus DID call himself God.

 

I read THE NEW TESTAMENT on that bus ride for one reason. I grew up filled with self hatred because Conventional Christianity taught homosexuals wre/are the abomination od desolation and are hated by God.

 

Reading the word for myself  I learned the only thing God hates is a liar.

 

Jesus said, “Speak the truth. It shall set you free.”

 

Every LGBTQ person who speaks the truth of our being knows personally how liberating speaking our truth it.

Jean Cocteau said, “Whatever the world condemns you for, make it your own. It is yourself.”

That takes courage, Without that courage we are dead.–Reg Hartt

John 14:9 https://www.biblegateway.com/verse/en/John%2014%3A9

https://reghartt.ca/cineforum/

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