This is my response to a recent video produced by the LDS Church on the nature of God. My reinterpretation moves away from the supernatural dualistic interpretation, towards a more immanent nondualistic interpretation of the Divine.
How could I write something that I did not write? Great question. I'm trying to figure that out too.
My ideas about the Divine have shifted in recent years as my spiritual practice has deepened. Here are some thoughts about how I currently interpret "God."
We operate from two identities simultaneously during our life, but one of those identities is greater, and is the one that we should strive to know, and be One with.
Thinking of God as a male human(s) out in the universe somewhere seems to be a primitive, magical, supernatural, and archaic conception of the Divine, literalizing the pronouns of "He" and "Him," and in the Christian tradition of "Father" and "Son." I've written about this specifically at least once before, but it's worth discussing more.
Mormonism traces back its history in modern times to its founding prophet, Joseph Smith Jr., and his "First Vision." Joseph was a young farmer boy who lived in western New York, born in the early nineteenth century. This was the time of what's known as the Second Great Awakening, and where Joseph lived is known as the "burned-over district." It was a time of much Protestant religious excitement, revivals, reforms, and the formation of new religious movements and denominations (which eventually included Mormonism). A Restoration Movement grew in popularity in the area, which involved ideas of "restoring" a pure, primitive, uncorrupted, and original form of Christian faith.
An addition to the BHT, about the problems with religious authorities.
I shared this account in my introductory paper about mysticism, but I think it should be shared as a stand-alone post as well. This is because it is so stunningly similar in many respects to Joseph Smith's accounts of the First Vision.
Was Jesus in the Father, and the Father in Jesus? Did the Father dwell in Jesus? Could they see the Father in Jesus because the Father was in Jesus, actually dwelled in Jesus? When Jesus said "me," did he mean Jesus only, or did he mean us, ourselves, we? Did he want us to become like him, and mirror his words.