a place to come and discuss in peace, things of religion, life, and families

Posts Tagged ‘Christ’

Old things, New things, Different things

Posted by tawodi on February 17, 2009

I have been ill for the last three months on and off,  that is why,  with apologies,  I have not written much at all. Quite frankly I wasn’t sure if I would be able to keep going at all but things are,  for now,  improving.

As most of you, we are also girding our loins for the future,  which is any thing but clear for all of us. In as much as the financial institutions of the country and much of the world have been gutted, by the people and politicians who were in charge of,  and also supposed to protect them,  and us. 

So,  like everybody else,  I have been watching carefully the turn of events and praying for a good outcome….we will see.

O.K. now for something new. For some time I have been in touch with a man who is in India conducting a ministry of support for 15 local villages and their people.  Most of what he has been doing is teaching people how to create small truck gardens to help feed their families by growing vegatables and such. In that area,  a small patch the size of the average living room here in the U.S. can provide almost all the needs of a small family,  year-round with careful tending. Also,  his helpers and he,  have been teaching reading and simple math skills and other things to the children, as the government is almost totally absent from this area and does not provide these vital steps up for it’s people.

They are located in Andrha Pradesh in Orissa state and some of you may be aware that,  that area of India has been the victim of outbreaks of anti Christian violence over the last few years. There is a great deal of inter-religious strife, ignorance and violence because the local shamans see Christianity as a threat to the social structure, such as it is.

This man,  Pastor Cornelius Sikala by name,  has helpers who conduct with him this life saving and enriching work in 15 villages in the local area. And they need,  rather desparately,  the help that some may be able to give.

I have checked very carefully and these are ligitimate people and activities, so I am throwing whatever I can for support their way and reaching out to all everywhere for help for them.

You can reach them at the following e-mail address  once you have contacted him he will give you all his bank particulars so you can check him out and then send whatever help you can.

This is the first time I have done this and is a new thing for Tree of The Mustard Seed Ministries, as we also operate solely on a no fee and no compensation basis ourselves, to provide the care we do.

I am going to up load a few pictures of their work at Grace Ministries for you to see here. Pastor Sikala has sent me dozens of pictures.



Immediatly above is Pastor Sikala,  above that are pictures of his congregants gathering clothes,   food and tools for the villages they serve. Please help these people all you can,  ANYTHING you send will help.

Blessings on you all,  here’s hoping I can continue……Rev. Bruce………………………Tawodi


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Time to do the Mission

Posted by tawodi on December 30, 2008

This is a time for reflection on our mission as members of, Tree of The Mustard Seed Ministries and  The People
of Abraham.

We see from the news that a great conflagration is raging with
increasing loss of life and displacement of peoples around the region
of the Holy land.

As The People of the Books, we owe our brothers and sisters who are
caught up in this clash of arms, the offer of solace and support no
matter who they are, or what faith they follow.

We as people of peace will face a test in this time of chaos and
tumult. That test will be staying true to our course and calling for
peace no matter who may be at fault in this current clash.

Hundreds of years of war MUST BE STOPPED!! The cycle of death MUST
It is the INNOCENT who pay the greaatest price, for the hatred of
others. The women, children and men, who just want to live, and find
safety, in the homes and countries where they live, suffer the

I am sending you, as members, the request, that you take the time and
effort to send to the leaders of Israel the fervent prayer for their
peace, but also to remind them that killing of the innocent, no matter
who does it IS WRONG!!

Also, the leaders of Hamas should be apprised of this fact, There is
no “right” in killing of the innocent, It is a perversion of what ever
faith you follow. This will be followed by other requests of the same
nature. Be strong, pray hard for God to prevail over the foolishness
of men!!
be well friends,…….Reverend Bruce

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What role does God play in the modern world?

Posted by tawodi on June 16, 2008

In a discussion on another forum I wrote this in answer to an atheists statement. That we need alittle less God, as when was more God any good for anybody. Of course he was blaming religion for all the ills of the world as many do without knowing what the role of God and more important, what our role in relation to Him, is.


The problem is not God.

The problem is that very, very, very few, human beings understand just what place God has in society at large.

In ancient times God was in the forefront of the formation of society and culture, as that was a formative time.

As time progressed, God turned over to us dominion, as has been stated in more ways than anyone can count. As the civilization matured we as humans pulled away from God and since it is a function of free will to do so, He let us do just that.

What so few fail to realise with That maturization process came responsibilities, which to date we humans still refuse to shoulder ( generally speaking )

God always wanted to have a personal relationship with US, not with governments, but with human beings!!!

Our tribalistic herd instinct and mulishness will not let us, on some level, grasp that fact! And, fact it is, and is also how we as religious people, get in so much trouble in the world.

We find ourselves attracted to the trappings of certain religious structures for their majesty, or to some others for precisely the opposite!! But, in all cases, ALL cases, we still apply the “herd” as the governing factor in our choice. To wit “Well all these people agree with me, so it must be right!!”

This applies to what ever religion, sect, denomination, or god, you choose to worship, except in rare instances.

The exceptions?? They are when some one asks themselves, what does God want, and listens in the stillness for the answer. It is in the stillness, we get that answer we seek.

That answer is never, band together with this band of lunatics and kill that band of lunatics!!

It is always, If you would have what you seek, do as I ask. If you would have all that I offer, give to Me, all that is Mine. When it becomes apparent that all that you are, is exactly what is required, we turn away. The price is too high, we must live in the world! Some few will submit, realizing that submission is not surrender, but glorying in the fullness of what becomes revealed to those who do not tell God what they want, but accept what He offers. A whole different form of existence, totally foriegn to most, in their ability to understand.

And, so we grope in our poor way, to come together in a semblance of agreement, of what God wants of us and, the answer must needs be flawed, because we are flawed, and any answer we provide, will be flawed as well.

It is not so much that atheism should be taught, or any other ism, but that our place in the scheme of things as the children of a future, that will depend on all of us being there, cannot be fulfilled, unless we take and apply, those measures that ensure we will be there.

Recognition of individual human beings, no matter who they call God. The richness of the human experience, in and of, a relational nature will ensure that we are there.

If we do as Jesus instructed, even if only on a secular level, this will come to pass.

Every Master who has ever walked the Earth has given us the same message, use it, choose well.

Joe, Be well friend………………Tawodi

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Another place to go and learn

Posted by tawodi on June 8, 2008

We once again reach out our hands in friendship to another sister organization, The American Interfaith Institute of Philadelphia Pa.
They have been around for more than 25 years and have scholars world wide, who teach and spread the word that we CAN get along, most people want only to live and prosper.
Every religious structure has those who would hi jack the faith for evil purposes and we as the people and children of the Abrahamic faiths must be in the forefront of those who would identify and oppose their purposes and actions and the LIE that they operate with the blessings of God. No matter which faith they profess.
So welcome them with me and if you live near them take advantage of their expertise……we will.

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Posted by tawodi on June 3, 2008

 If you look at the left hand column you will see a new addition!!!  VERVE-EARTH  This is becoming a busy place!!  If you have been here before push the button and go see the world!!  For those  who are new……read the mission statement,   please,  it is important for understanding who we are.

SOOOOO,  welcome to those who come here, from where ever they are in the world.  We seek here,  peace, understanding and acceptance,  of all faiths and,  those  with no faith as it is recognized.

The key word is acceptance,  we do NOT question what anyone believes,  that is their business. All we ask is a genuine effort at reconciliation,  of all peoples and countries.  To work toward this acceptance and the chance to raise our children to live, free of fear, well fed and adequately educated, so they can have a little better life than we as parents have had.  There is not a rational human being alive,  who does not want these things for their children.

That’s it, it is that simple, no hidden agenda, no attempt to convert any one, Religious questions answered off line directly to you, to avoid dissention. You will be directed to the theological person,  qualified to answer your questions and this is free and private for you to use. Everyone  posting or commenting here, will do so with respect or you will be banned from posting again.  All comments are monitored for appropriateness and forwarded if necessary or answered directly on the pages of commentary.

Be well, enjoy the site and begin to cherish the freedom such a place affords you,  to learn and grow

Be well all…………Reverend Bruce  Holzrichter…………………………..screen name, Tawodi


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Posted by tawodi on June 2, 2008

 I am proud to announce the Consultants to Religious Tolerance of Ontario Canada, to the home page of the People of Abraham, Christians Muslims and Jews. Here at Life, Religion, Family.

This Sunday, at The Tree of The Mustard Seed, I also announced their existance and the link up of their site to mine. They and I are at present discussing the future workings and possible sharing of information and contacts accross the world that they have made and we have made.

They are especially interested in our methods of acceptance for people of differing faiths as with some groups they have not made the inroads that we have.

All of these things are under discussion, or soon will be, and I decided not to wait before introducing them here, as even if some facets do not come to fruition they do good work and, we are proud to make known to others their participation in peacefull pursuits, to the benefit of all mankind.

So WELCOME !!  Brothers and Sisters of Religious Tolerance,  may we all be blessed in the work for peace.

They are located in the Blogroll to the right in the column, go visit, you will be as excited as I!!!

Rev. Bruce………………………………….Tawodi


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Religious concepts of soul 6

Posted by tawodi on April 29, 2008

W.T. is right in one respect the body is temporary. The “Breath of life” animates it, Or is our first connection to God.

As the mind progresses it learns the necessary things to survive, adapt to society’s needs, comport behaviour to accepted norms according to the culture surrounding it and finally is ready to leave the parents on it’s own course in life. Tradition and scripture suggest that a child be raised in faith, but this is sometimes not done or is not effective.

The reason for the failure is unimportant. The truly important detail is this. God has provided a way to have Him accompany you on your walk, or to re-establish a connection that, for what ever reason, was not nurtured or withered away as one approaches adulthood.

This can take two forms, if you were Baptised as a child, you can stand in front of a congregation of Christians, of your choice, and renew your Baptismal vows. There are some that say you must be Baptised but the Holy spirit needs be conferred only once. In my faith, perhaps not yours.

Full immersion or sprinkling, is acceptable to most, but then again that is your choice.

The purpose of Baptism is not an initiation but to prepare a clean dwelling place for the spirit to be within as well as signifying a washing away of the old and a turning from the ways of sin. The very word “repent” means “to turn from”, in the Greek.

It is not as complicated as it sounds the Baptist church has a booklet that explains many details or you can talk to any pastor of your choice. What is important, is to be at peace with your form of worship, before you decide which course you will follow. Reading and instruction can do this for you.

Now, once the mind is reconciled to the indwelling spirit, your out look about everything will undergo subtle and increasingly complicated new ways of seeing yourself and the world around you …….It is beautifull to experience this! Most take several months to notice the changes, but change you will!

This is why we who have passed through these things know the concept body, mind and spirit. To us in our understanding as Christians we know ourselves as this till death then, at death, the mind with all it’s experience merges with the spirit and, Becomes! The Soul, and as W.T. said goes onward, to what ever it is God has planned for us!! Some will not agree, some will, ALL are free to choose their path with Christ to God. He knows our hearts and how true or not, they are. Even better than we ourselves do, He will judge our intent, not men.

I have renewed my Baptismal vows several times, why several? Because like the other day, I feel pain and react unwisely, just as any other would do, if not sufficiently discipilined in nature. It’s sometimes very difficult for an old street kid like me to avoid that. No excuse, just the truth. Knowing this about myself makes it wonderfully easy, for me to apologise for this and MEAN it, as I am aware of this fault within my self, then move on.

Via Con Dios friend……….Tawodi

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Religious concepts of soul 5

Posted by tawodi on April 29, 2008

As I mentioned One definition of soul comes from the Greek theory that a soul is a complete being existing as PURE energy. It inhabits the body at birth, and goes on after death as an immortal being of energy, to inhabit other planes of existence.

One other concept of soul is Hindu in nature, which some Buddhists also believe. A discorporate being of pure energy that at death inhabits another body, The Dali LLama is said to be reincarnated from the last Dali Llama and on and on from agess past.( he is Buddhist ) The Hindu’s believe that the soul does this starting from a lower life form and progresses through many incarnations till it reaches perfection. That is why they have sacred cows and other such restrictions against eating animal tissue they see it as another Soul, eating it would be a BAD no no!!

SPIRIT; In Judaism the spirit, as I said, is the “Breath of life” given by God at birth and at death returns to him. After death we rest till the ressurection, there our mind and spirit unite ( check this fact of belief ) for the final judgment, the out come to be determined by God. You may or, may not, know that some believe, as do I, that Jesus will be the final judge at the first judgment and it will be God as the final arbiter at the White Throne judgment, according to Revelations.

Now we come to the point that the Hellenzation of scripture has led to the inclusion of soul in our thinking. Their definition of soul and the Judaistic concept of spirit from birth are merged as being spirit, it becomes soul when the mind, with all of lifes experiences are merged with spirit, as soul and go to God for judgment either after death or before judgment. It is this that led to the creation of “purgatory” to accomodate an “immortal” soul. Or the concept of “Limbo” for souls that were innocent or didn’t require punishing but had to go “SOMEWHERE”!! Since different dimensions were not even concieved of then, they came up with these two places, to make their theology work.

INTERPRET; This is no longer necessary. When reading the Bible. You DON”T need me or anybody else to tell you what it means. I am going to assume you all have read books you enjoyed, in doing so, no interpretation was necessary was it? O.K. get a modern translation of the Bible N.I.V. ( New international version ) N.R.S.V. ( New Revised Standard Version. New American Bible ( Approved by the Catholic Church ).

Read them as if you were reading a novel….do not ask what the meaning is, IT MEANS WHAT IT SAYS!! That’s it, that’s all you need do.

When I started reading on my own at not quite thirteen it was the only way it made any sense at all to me.(K.J.V.) Everybody else I asked had different ideas about almost everything in it, and I decided I would just do as I did, read it like any other book. Once having done that, I then bought, I don’t remember how many, concordances such as, Strongs, Harpers, Stromberghs, Zondervans concordance and dictionary. When an adult I purchased the Interpreters Bible library and the Interpreters dictionary of the Bible, Twelve volumes in all, which I still have. Over the years I have somehow wound up with 14 Bibles on the shelves of different translations. The Nag Hammahdi Libraries All the Apocryphal writings from the Bible.

None of this is to blow my own horn as some have accused me of, it is just to show where this search can lead you, once engaged!!

All but a few of these are located in libraries accross the country, go and enjoy!! You needn’t buy them!!

I hope this is of some use to you.

EDIT; the Zondervans dictionary is an invaluable tool for all as the definitions of Biblical words and places is invaluable to reading with understanding. T.

Be well friend…………..Tawodi

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Religious concepts of soul – 4

Posted by tawodi on April 29, 2008

Yes, I differentiated a little at the beginning of the thread and was going to expand the definiton yesterday but didn’t get the chance.

From discussions over the years with different clergy, Protestant and Catholic it seems they pretty much all agree, the definition of soul is the combination of mind and spirit at the end of life. This seems to work as the mind learns from life, as we pass through it and, the spirit is with us from birth. It MUST be understood we are thinking and speaking theologically here and in keeping with Christian concepts.

As I mentioned, the Pharisies were busily engaged in purging the Hellenistic influences of the Occupation by the Greeks after they came to Israel in 325 B.C.E. after the Macabean revolts that finally succeeded in wresting Israel from their grasp ( apprx. 100 B.C.E. ) the restoration of the Pentateuch and the full Torah was of paramount importance to them. Greek philosophy had infiltrated to a large degree much of those writings before the time of Christ, including the Greek concept of “soul”.

Some of these concepts still find their way into our theology, especially from the first translation into the Greek and then to the Latin Vulgate versions and then through history.

The stabilizing of the Old Testament took almost five hundred years. Over that period of time the Masoretic Texts came to the fore and now that we have the Dead Sea Scrolls to compare with them it is astounding that the Rabbinical conclaves yearly, for all that time, were almost in word for word agreement with the Scrolls!!

The King James edition of 1603 and approved and distributed in middle english after it’s first editions in court French are also in almost word for word agreement with the scrolls also. When one considers the accuracy of these translations over thousands of years this is truly astonishing!

Back to your point, there is a difference in that “soul” is generally thought of as immortal in most Religious frameworks, ( Hindu, Krishna, Tantric Buddhism and some disciplines of Tantric Yoga, Shinto, Daoism, Taoism, and others. )

In Judaism and Christianity which of course has it’s roots in Judaism, spirit comes to us at first breath and returns to God at death but some believe as I have mentioned the combination of spirit and mind is the soul.

Others know more, this is the limit of my off the cuff expertise.

Be well friend……………Tawodi

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Concepts of soul 3

Posted by tawodi on April 29, 2008

Have you found any other..(snip)

Yes many, as I alluded to at the beginning of the thread I did not include them there as I once again did not want to digress from the salient points.

Soul; (Shinto) A form of Japanese religion/philosophy and thought, considered by some to be ancestor worship, but it is much more than that. Some believe that their ancestors are with them in life and quide them at times. Small shrines are erected in the home and large shrines are built in villages and towns, for community worship of different deities and to ask or seek supplication and intervention by their ancestors and various entities.

There are several different sects of Shintoism.

Taoism, Daoism; are amalgamations generally speaking of spirit God and beings of spirit/soul combinations. I don’t really know much about either but there is a sect of Daoism that is very nearly, in fact is considered by some to BE Christian, I some how did not ever find the time for much investigation of them other than to note what the very basic concepts are.

Buddism; is not really a religion but some sects of it believe in soul and the progression of the soul till nirvannah is reached (heaven?)

The strictly philosophical version does not believe in soul but proposes that Nirvannah can be reached right here on earth by the living.

There are some Buddhists that frequent these fora but they usually get shouted down by some and, gentle people that they are, mostly stay away.

Islam; There is such friction between the faiths that I will refrain from a descriptiion here but, Sgt Salaam has a thread going and no doubt will read this, so, go there and ask, and he will give you the real take on that, as he is also a scholar and convert from Christianity to Islam and working toward his masters in comparitive religion. That’s why he and I get along well. He can spot B.S. a mile away ‘nough said. One of the grandest people I have ever spoken to is his grandfather who is a pastor of fifty years experience ( Baptist ) in Virginia. We have discussed a few things and it is always well to do so with someone who has forgotten more than I will ever know. They visited on the thread before this one.( different thinking )

Judaism; mostly the same as us ( of course! )

Hinduism; This one gets complicated as they believe EVERYTHING has a soul because everything progresses through incarnations and finally ends up in Heaven after who knows how many incarnations!!

Anamism; The belief that certain animals have souls that are able to communicate with or are kindred to certain human beings.

Totem identification; Not to be confused with anamism. It is different in that people do NOT believe the totem animal/trees of certain kinds/fish/birds/ are “gods” but identify with them because of certain characteristics. This is sometimes interesting as I know a little more of it because I am part native American. My mother was half Wazhazhe or known to you as Osage. From the central plains area.

Spirit guides; this is one area that you must be careful I do not reccomend much study of this as to do so with out Jesus firmly in your heart is in my opinion dangerous. We are told “Treat not with spirits except in my name.” and I firmly believe that, don’t do it!!

Now the reason I brought up the Greek definition of soul was not because Bill did but because the Greeks had a heavy influence on Israel from about 325 B.C.E. till about 100 or so B.C.E. they had conquered Israel and their philosophy caused the Hellenization of scripture. It was one of the things that the Pharasies were heavily engaged in scouring from scripture in the time of Jesus. You have no doubt heard of the Maccabeean rebellion it was these that overthrew the Greeks. If you want to learn of them ( Maccabees ) read Apocryphal texts of Maccabees 1..2..3.. it is fascinating.

Soul Inuit; These people believe in the soul inhabiting an animal after death usually one that has served as a totem for the believer.
Inuit/= eskimo

That’s about all I recall clearly off the top of my head. The little book I sent today has quite a bit more and better detail, as well as dates and places

Be well friends…………Rev.  Bruce……………………………………………….Tawodi


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