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This is Previous-Essay <== This-Essay ==> Following-Essay Click HERE on this line to find essays via Your-Key-Words. {Most frequent wordstarts of each essay will be put here.} ========================================================== %HOW DISCERN RELIGIOUS LEADERS TRUE FALSE PROPHETS 040107 %TEACHINGS SCRIPTURES TEXTS RITUALS FOCUS NEGATIVE 040107 %POSITIVE AFFIRMATIONS ATTENTION IGNORE NEGLECT IT 040107 %I-THOU MARTIN BUBER KINDNESS HOSPITALITY CIVILITY 040107 %LABELED DEVILS EXCOMMUNICATE ISOLATE ALIENATE SIN 040107 %ARROGANT SELF RIGHTEOUS POWER CONCENTRATED WEALTH 040107 How are we to discern which religious leaders are true prophets, and which religious leaders are false prophets? 1. Not so much by which teachings, scriptural-texts and rituals they focus attention upon --- but by which KIND-RELATIONSHIPS they focus affirmative attention upon. 2. Not so much by which teachings, scriptural-texts and rituals they IGNORE and DO NOT FOCUS ATTENTION UPON --- but by which KIND-RELATIONSHIPS THEY DIVERT ATTENTION AWAY FROM. 3. False prophets divert attention away from KIND- RELATIONSHIPS; and towards NEGATIVELY LABELED INDIVIDUALS whom they are working to excommunicate, isolate and alienate from the religious-community. 4. False prophets are arrogant, self-righteous, power-concentrators, wealth-concentrators, mis-leading, dishonest and pretentious people --- who focus vulnerable people's attentions upon cosmological/mystical statements about "God", "gods", "angels", "heaven" and "hell"; i.e., statements WHICH CANNOT BE EXISTENTIALLY TESTED and proven to be either true or false --- within the real realms of common-people's existence within their states-of-vulnerability. 5. False prophets create and maintain real common- people's states-of-vulnerability; by shifting attention away from the paths which lead to facilitating and promoting real: honesty, openness, diplomacy, civility, hospitality, peace-making, generosity, reconciliation, forgiveness; i.e., away from the paths toward KIND- RELATIONSHIPS. 6. True prophets are humble peacemakers who cooperate and collaborate to create and SHARE equally: power, wealth, health; experiences, insights, discernments, understandings; civility and hospitality within sanctuaries where poor people can freely exchange free gifts of the freedom to be safely- vulnerable within intimate-relationships which are guided and motivated by Integrative Love. 7. True prophets help poor vulnerable people to see clearly and discern the true natures of the realms of false-prophets --- so that poor vulnerable people will not be inclined to imitate the dominant attitudes and behavior-patterns of false-prophets. Shalom! (c) 2005 by Paul A. Smith in (On Being Yourself, Whole and Healthy) ==========================================================