Finding an Inclusive Spirituality to
Why does religion so often not meet our spiritual needs?
Why is there is such a hunger for spirituality in the world?
Is the kingdom of God out there somewhere, or within us?
Should we seek worldy influence or inner spirituality?
Is there everlasting punishment in hell, or reincarnation?
Is Jesus coming back in a physical body, or in our hearts?
How can we come to personally know our loving God?
Help Heal Each Other and the World
If any of these questions interest you, you may like to:
Read summaries and two complete chapters from this book
Know the essence of Jesus
See evidence for reincarnation
Explore Revelation as an allegory of living the spiritual life
Learn how to meditate
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Quote of the Month from In Search of the Loving God:
Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out,
“Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is suffering
terribly from demon possession.”
What are we to make of Jesus’ response in this incident? To call people dogs is a highly offensive insult in the East. Could Jesus really have insulted this poor woman who had asked for his help, knowing she would take it without a word, in return for the mere chance of him healing her daughter? It seems a cruel and demeaning thing for him to have done. The answer to this dilemma is, however, not in any shortcoming of Jesus’ character, but in our own preconceived notions about his character. We never think of Jesus having a sense of humor, or of him being quite so human as to make a joke at his disciples’ expense as a gentle way of correcting their poor behavior. Yet if we look at this passage with the possibility that Jesus is “taking the Mickey out of” his disciples for snubbing this poor woman so cruelly, and doing it in such a way as to show the woman he rejects the snub, and is siding with her, then we can see Jesus responding in the kindest possible way. Jesus can’t seriously be saying, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel,” as this directly contradicts his saying, “I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also.” (John 10:16). Jesus is actually being facetious, saying, “So, I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel!” in order to point out to his disciples both their error and his disapproval of their snub. When the woman came and knelt at his feet, Jesus would have exchanged a look with her which said something like, “We know what they are thinking!” He then spelt out what their thoughts were: “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to their dogs!” With a quick wit, the woman replied in like humor, though very humbly and poignantly: “Yes Lord, but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.” By this time, I think the disciples would have been thoroughly ashamed of themselves. Jesus, having made this woman feel good about her request, of course went on to heal her daughter. Read in this light, the story becomes one of the most touching illustrations of Jesus’ kindness and understanding. Once this story is understood for what it is, it can of course be better translated: no Bible I have seen has it right.
Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and
urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.”
He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.”
The woman came up and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she
He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and
toss it to their dogs.”
“Yes, Lord,” she said, “but even the dogs eat the crumbs that
fall from their masters’ table.”
Then Jesus answered, “Woman, you have great faith! Your
request is granted.”
And her daughter was healed from that very
hour. (Matt 15:21–28)
— From In Search of the Loving God, Chapter 11, "Confidence in the Bible" pp. 191-193.
Past Quotes of the Month can be read at:
Past quotes of the month
Endorsements and Reviews:
In Search of the Loving God is a book written with a purpose - and that purpose is to bring an age old message of truth and love to our tired, confused and desperate world. Mark is out to conquer hearts and win love for God. His book mingles impressive scholarship with both poetic appeal and down to earth empirical experiences. The world is in great need of the healing that this book could bring it.
(Ian D. Baynes, B.V.Sc., M.A.P.S.)
In Search of the Loving God reads like a combination mystery, history, and Bible commentary all rolled into one. Read it for its enlightening view on Scripture and revealing stories of the church's history. May the Spirit use this book to reach many people with its hopeful
message for the future of Christianity.
(Joy Wells, Educator)
Mr Mason's skills as both researcher and writer are such that I was unable to put the book down once I started it. He makes what could be a very dry topic not only readable, but also highly relevant to someone who is attempting to move beyond surface spirituality to a level of deep understanding and growth.
His book is divided into two parts. The first gives a very comprehensive, and eye-opening, history of the Bible and Christianity as a religion. He shows incredibly clearly how and why the church strayed from the teachings of Jesus and what that means to the church today. The second section shows how the Bible and its teachings are relevant to seekers in today's world. He describes Bible passages that teach us about reincarnation, a simple lifestyle and free will, and he includes wonderful and affirming interpretations about what hell and the book of Revelation really means.
(Patricia Vallerand, from her review of In Search of the Loving God in the Observer Quarterly)
To read more reviews, and more of what readers are saying about his book, see the reviews and endorsements page at this site.
Author's description of In Search of the Loving God:
In Search of the Loving God proposes that the key to knowing and loving God is meditation, but that before we can love God, and effectively meditate, we need to overcome our fear of Him. The book challenges traditional Christian beliefs by taking a fresh look at the life of Jesus, and at how the church soon became corrupt and power-seeking and largely ignored Jesus' teachings, invented the concept of everlasting punishment in hell in order to control people through fear, and eventually terrorized European society with the Inquisition and the witch craze, in which millions of women were burned at the stake, often for no crime greater than being a midwife. It looks at the disturbing similarities between medieval Christianity and modern religious fundamentalism, which in America manifests as the Christian Coalition, and other organizations of the religious right. It shows how the "us and them" nature of our society is based on, and underpinned by, the medieval Christian belief that some people are valuable to God and are saved, while others are not and are eternally damned. The importance of the separation of church and state in protecting us against fundamentalism, and preserving our freedom to make our own moral choices is highlighted, as is the reality of our free will -- God's greatest gift to us.
The book has chapters on why there is no honest Biblical basis for believing in everlasting punishment in hell, Biblical evidence for believing in Reincarnation, a metaphysical interpretation of the Book of Revelation, how to meditate, the reality of miracles in our lives, and on how Christianity could be more accepting of other religions such as Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism and Islam. It advocates a radical reform of Christianity, which would result in it becoming a religion of love and acceptance, rather than what it traditionally has been: a religion of guilt and fear. Abandoning the belief in eternal hell, and embracing reincarnation and meditation may sound particularly New Age, but the Bible shows Jesus taught these concepts, and that they open the way to knowing and loving God. If you are looking for a loving and inclusive spirituality, a Christianity that embraces God and all people, then this book might be a stepping stone on your path.
In divine love,
Challenge yourself to this zany and informative Religous History Quiz
If you need help editing and or publishing your writing,
you may like to read about the author's editing and publishing service: Dwapara Press Editing and Publishing
The Hot Springs of America, a novel, showing how another "terrorist" attack could mean the end of our current democracy, and plunge America into a second civil war. Read two complete chapters online, and if want to read the rest, the e-book can be purchased for just $5.95 (PayPal or Credit Card). To start reading, click here: The Hot Springs of America.
Original Songs: Songs of love, peace and the spirit. A number of songs I have written, including "Avatar" and "Live by the Words We Say": Songs.
Clipper Ship is a suite of productivity tools that makes working on a computer easier and more enjoyable. It includes an "instant spreadsheet," allowing you to do calculations with numbers in editors or word processors, even if they are mixed with text. It also allows you to paste often-used blocks of text from a pick list, and copy symbols not on your keyboard from a symbol list. It has a macro recorder, enabling you to record and replay keystrokes and mouse actions. It has an Area from Map feature that easily gets diminsions and areas from on-screen maps including Google Earth. It has an image capture feature that copies the current window or the whole screen into the Paint program so you can edit and save the images. It has a multi-clipboard, enabling you to paste any of the last 12 clips you have copied, monitors your typing speed in the current session (if you care to look at it!), and it is also an abbreviation expander with over 26,000 built-in short forms for words and phrases. It is fully Windows 7 compatible, and also works on previous versions of windows. To find out more, and to download the free 'Lite' version of the program, click here: Clipper Ship.
Aquarius Database is a freeware business database with perpetual inventory stock control and many other nice features, which will meet the needs of many startup and/or small businesses, and which can be extended later to give added functionality as a business grows. To find out more about it, click here: Aquarius Database.
My farm and forest at Fox Hollow: near Eugene, Oregon: Farm.
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In Search of the Loving God
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Also by Mark Mason
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