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Alright, first things first. Because I don’t want to get any death threats over my recovery blog, and because I understand and respect the fact that Christ is a precious figure to many many people around the world, let me say that this post is in no way sacrilege to Jesus or religion. To fully vet our backgrounds in this department, JM’s family is mainly Catholic and Episcopal (I think) and I was born to a protestant woman who converted to Judaism in order to avoid the wrath of her mother-in-law and not be permanently exiled for being shikseh!  My mother later became a born-again Christian (years after her divorce) and started burning Barbara Streisand albums in response to the threat of satanic messages being secretly contained on secular music.  As you can imagine, (at the tender age of 9 years old) I was shocked, and also very confused! Later in life I was reunited with a whole slew of my Jewish relatives, and that’s where I picked up my mad Yiddish skills.  Okay, here’s how JM makes peace with Jesus.

We were standing at the kitchen sink yesterday eating a healthy breakfast some toast loaded with butter and raspberry jam, when with a furrowed brow, he scratched his head (jelly eeking out the corners of his mouth) and said:

Maybe Jesus was one of us. 

Huh? As in alcoholic?

Why do we have to take the words of Jesus so literally?

Mmmm…are you saying he inferred that he was an alcoholic?  

I’m a child of god.  I’m a child of the universal whole.

Ok. And?

Jesus broke off some good teaching, but so does Art.

Who’s Art?   

From L.A., on skid row. The homeless photographer guy we hung out with.

Ooooh! I love Art. Agreed, Jesus is Krishna, is Buddha, is Art.  He was a teacher.

Yeah. He was a teacher. Like Art.  We’re all teachers. It’s just about how far we’re willing to go to carry the message.

The conversation went on from there but in the name of brevity, I’ll leave it at this.  Yesterday, JM was able to channel his inner Jesus (and his inner Emmet Fox) in order to point out that as Fox would say, “There is absolutely no system of theology of doctrine to be found in the Bible. It simply isn’t there!”  This goes back to yesterday’s discussion of Step 2, that we find numerous ways to come into faith, and once there, we have the option to just keep growing.  People are essentially spiritual creatures (not necessarily religious ones!)  At any given moment if we consider all the possible religions and religious perspectives on the planet, we are getting just a fragment of different ways to say the same thing…for example:

So if you’re struggling with Step 2, coming to believe that a power greater than yourself can restore you to sanity, you’re probably putting that power into a box, making it rigid and strict.  Instead, try wearing the idea of a power greater than yourself like a loose cloak (vs. a straitjacket.) Simply wrap yourself loosely in the idea that you are not that power. That’s all you really need to know to begin. You’re not God!  Once I accepted that there was in fact a power greater than Nina, my heart began to open to the teachers that were brought into my life. And in sobriety I learned that everyone, every single person with whom I have any encounter, is a teacher. Teaching me in just a word, a glance, an attitude, a phrase, a sentence, a conversation, who I want to be and who I definitely do not want to be.  I can thank everyone I come in contact with, no matter how they treat me.

I give you that Jesus was pretty cool. He was a subversive you know, always at war with the ‘official’ powers and regime of his own country.  They knew, just like the powers at large today know, that when people speak the truth, when they can access the truth, hold it in their hearts, become empowered and moved by it, it is the beginning of the end for the old regime.  And that’s a lot of power.