Okay, Kiddies, It's time to De Mello out...

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I want to say one more thing about our perception of reality. Let me put it in the form of an analogy. The President of the United States has to get feedback from the citizens. The Pope in Rome has to get feedback from the whole Church. There are literally millions of items that could be fed to them, but they could hardly take all of them in, much less digest them. So they have people whom they trust to make abstracts, summarize things, monitor, filter; in the end, some of it gets to their desk. Now, this is what's happening to us. From every pore or living cell of our bodies and from all our senses we are getting feedback from reality. But we are filtering things out constantly. Who's doing the filtering? Our conditioning? Our culture? Our programming? The way we were taught to see things and to experience them? Even our language can be a filter. There is so much filtering going on that sometimes you won't see things that are there. You only have to look at a paranoid person who's always feeling threatened by something that isn't there, who's constantly interpreting reality in terms of certain experiences of the past or certain conditioning that he or she has had.

But there's another demon, too, who's doing the filtering. It's called attachment, desire, craving. The root of sorrow is craving. Craving distorts and destroys perception. Fears and desires haunt us. Samuel Johnson said, "The knowledge that he is to swing from a scaffold within a week wonderfully concentrates a man's mind." You blot out everything else and concentrate only on the fear, or desire, or craving. In many ways we were drugged when we were young. We were brought up to need people. For what? For acceptance, approval, appreciation, applause -- for what they called success. Those are words that do not correspond to reality. They are conventions, things that are invented, but we don't realize that they don't correspond to reality. What is success? It is what one group decided is a good thing. Another group will decide the same thing is bad. What is good in Washington might be considered bad in a Carthusian monastery. Success in a political circle might be considered failure in some other circles. These are conventions. But we treat them like realities, don't we? When we were young, we were programmed to unhappiness. They taught us that in order to be happy you need money, success, a beautiful or handsome partner in life, a good job, friendship, spirituality, God -- you name it. Unless you get these things, you're not going to be happy, we were told. Now, that is what I call an attachment. An attachment is a belief that without something you are not going to be happy. Once you get convinced of that -- and it gets into our subconscious, it gets stamped into the roots of our being -- you are finished. "How could I be happy unless I have good health?" you say. But I'll tell you something. I have met people dying of cancer who were happy. But how could they be happy if they knew they were going to die? But they were. "How could I be happy if I don't have money?" One person has a million dollars in the bank, and he feels insecure; the other person has practically no money, but he doesn't seem to feel any insecurity at all. He was programmed differently, that's all. Useless to exhort the first person about what to do; he needs understanding. Exhortations are of no great help. You need to understand that you've been programmed; it's a false belief. See it as false, see it as a fantasy. What are people doing all through their lives? They're busy fighting; fight, fight, fight. That's what they call survival. When the average American says he or she is making a living, it isn't a living they're making, oh no! They have much more than they need to live. Come to my country and you'll see that. You don't need all those cars to live. You don't need a television set to live. You don't need makeup to live. You don't need all those clothes to live. But try to convince the average American of this. They've been brainwashed; they've been programmed. So they work and strive to get the desired object that will make them happy. Listen to this pathetic storyyour story, my story, everybody's story: "Until I get this object (money, friendship, anything) I'm not going to be happy; I've got to strive to get it and then when I've got it, I've got to strive to keep it. I get a temporary thrill. Oh, I'm so thrilled, I've got it!" But how long does that last? A few minutes, a few days at the most. When you get your brand-new car, how long does the thrill last? Until your next attachment is threatened!

The truth about a thrill is that I get tired of it after a while. They told me prayer was the big thing; they told me God was the big thing; they told me friendship was the big thing. And not knowing what prayer really was or not knowing what God really was, not knowing what friendship really was, we made much out of them. But after a while we got bored with them -- bored with prayer, with God, with friendship. Isn't that pathetic? And there's no way out, there's simply no way out. It's the only model we were given -- to be happy. We weren't given any other model. Our culture, our society, and, I'm sorry to say, even our religion gave us no other model. You've been appointed a cardinal. What a great honor that is! Honor? Did you say honor? You used the wrong word. Now others are going to aspire to it. You lapsed into what the gospels call "the world" and you're going to lose your soul. The world, power, prestige, winning, success, honor, etc., are nonexistent things. You gain the world but you lose your soul. Your whole life has been empty and soulless. There is nothing there. There's only one way out and that is to get de-programmed! How do you do that? You become aware of the programming. You cannot change by an effort of the will; you cannot change through ideals; you cannot change through building up new habits. Your behavior may change, but you don't. You only change through awareness and understanding. When you see a stone as a stone and a scrap of paper as a scrap of paper, you don't think that the stone is a precious diamond anymore and you don't think that that scrap of paper is a check for a billion dollars. When you see that, you change. There's no violence anymore in your attempt to change yourself. Otherwise, what you call change is simply moving the furniture around. Your behavior is changed, but not you.

Anthony de Mello, SJ

A mouthful, eh? And it IS so hard to get to that place that he speaks of..but I will try, yes, I will try try try...

-- FutureShock (gray@matter.think), September 19, 2000


There was a time in my live when everything was simple. Life was happy, people talked to each other. I was raise as a freeman ( if you don't know what that means look it up in a dictionary)we saw things as simple, god above and the love ones around you. We raised our food, did anything that needed to be done ourselves. We were happy! We had time to play, we worked hard but we had time to play.

-- ET (bneville@zebra.net), September 19, 2000.

Thanks FS for another skull knocking one from de Mello.

Sometimes when I read something like this, or have what I think is an epiphany of understanding something about life, I wonder what the use is of trying to explain it to people. I think one must wait for age and wisdom to settle in to understand those things on our own. And that is if we have the intellectual capacity at all. In other words, if you understand what de Mallo is saying, you already understood it at some level.

-- (smarty@wannabe.one), September 20, 2000.

How do you find it? How do you know you have attachments? How do you know you are after things lacking in meaning? How do you know it? Cause >>>>IT<<<<< is telling you as much.

The answer is available always. The clues are patience. No need for decisions. Begin to do what is right for the sheer sake of right. Soon you will know no other way. Listen, seek and knock if needed, it will be revealed when you are ready. All one needs to do is be a sincere seeker.

Course some will hate you for being a light. Too bad for them. For what is the value of the entire world if one loses themselves? Take no thought, let go and let God(truth)handle the details. Just do the footwork and all will magically fall into place minus all the planning, worrying and scheming.

If life seems one tragedy after another you are not listening. You will continue to return again and again to the scene of the crime until you get it(or get out of your way as it is). Faces and places will change, but not your lesson. YOU are standing in the way of the light and living in fear of the shadows.

Your job is to stay in the moment. If you are humming a tune you ain't there. If you are scheming about how you are going to get that no good SOB, you ain't there. If you are lost in your head, don't blame life if you hit it. Wake, enter the light and you will not need all your smoke, mirrors and maps.

-- Doc Paulie (fannybubbles@usa.net), September 20, 2000.

Spoken like a true Roybot, Doc.

-- (S@W.Oregon), September 20, 2000.


However unlike Roy Master's, I learned from "the" material and moved on and beyond. Unlike Master's, I was not interviewing Joseph Farah publisher of World Net Daily about the coming collapse of society from Y2k. I was doing the opposite.

Master's went off the deep end when he relocated from LA to Grant's Pass Oregon about 20 years ago I think it was. Back when he was in LA, the central message was the meditation technique he taught. Which, does work, and has allowed Master's to last for 4 decades doing radio shows, selling his tapes, and assorted books despite his habit of ragging on everybody and everything.

If one can shift thru all the political and hate inherit in Master's work, one can glean some real valuable information and life tools. The real value is in the technique, he teaches.

Like many who have learned from Roy, we are not too open about it. Sad, because the material is without question extremely effective and gets down to the real issue of EGO once and for all. Not for the person just "looking". If one is serious, do check out the materials FHU offers. Just understand you are going to get alot of useless rhetoric along with the help.

But what do I know? I actually think Memetics holds nuggets.

-- Doc Paulie (fannybubbles@usa.net), September 20, 2000.

Here is a really good webpage of more De Mello writings...click


"Every word, every image used for God is a distortion more than a description."

"Then how does one speak of God?"

"Through Silence."

"Why, then, do you speak in words?"

At that the Master laughed uproariously.

He said, "When I speak, you mustn't listen to the words, my dear. Listen to the Silence."

Anthony deMello

-- Doc Paulie (fannybubbles@usa.net), September 20, 2000.

There's no violence anymore in your attempt to change yourself. Otherwise, what you call change is simply moving the furniture around. Your behavior is changed, but not you.

Baby stepsI find selling off furniture, simplifying the layout of my room has helped me to achieve levels of progress which seem to stick. Or to put it another way, peeling ones onion a layer or two at a time makes for fewer tears all in one shot.

To rise too quickly gives me a case of divers bends. I find De Mello, though I often agree in theory, may not provide guidelines which are applicable in my day-to-day battle for survival. My weakness, not his. Certainly fine food for thought. Thank you, FS.

Doc wrote: If life seems one tragedy after another you are not listening

This speaks to me. It is wisdom stated over and over in the worlds great scriptures. For all that I hear it and read it and SAY it, still I do not fully absorb this lesson. Doc, please contribute more of this in the future, wont you? Do so, or Ill corral your ass next month and give you the once over twice.


-- Bingo1 (howe9@shentel.net), September 20, 2000.

I know what you're thinking, FS. The "bends" experience comes from my grasping, attachment to that which I think I'm losing along the way. Ain't it tough to let go of the crap? I mean, it is MY crap. LOL!

Makes me want to rap myself in the forehead with a golf shoe. One equipped with the old metal spikes, not the plastic jobs. What fun would that be?

-- Bingo1 (howe9@shentel.net), September 20, 2000.

FS, another wonderful De Mello piece. Thanks for posting these, I enjoy them more than you could know.

"It is the space between notes that makes the music."


Doc: Good points! ;-)

-- Not now, not like this (AgentSmith0110@aol.com), September 20, 2000.

I've been learning the practice of Falun Gong (the one that the Communist Chinese are arresting people for) for the last 3-4 weeks. The experienced practicioners and the book speak often about attachments. They say, that the movement meditation opens you up to positive energy, which then moves you to detach. Without the motivation brought on by the positive energy, striving to let go can become an attachment.

Since I have been at it only a short time, I think it's too soon to say more about my experience other than it's definately been positive, and I highly recommend it. There are chapters growing all around the country. Their website is FalunDafa.org

From the Falun Dafa- Essentials for Further Advancement: While learning the Fa, you should not search fr relevant parts, stubbornly intending to solve a particular problem. In fact, this is also a form of attachment. Actually, in cultivation practice you ascend by improving yourself gradually and unknowingly. Keep in mind: One should gain things naturally without pursuing them....

Lee Hongzhi

-- KoFE (your@town.USA), September 20, 2000.

FS - Exellent discussion of the mechanics. We are driven by cravings to form attachments that become filters that distort reality. We believe ideas that are not true and therefore develop unrealistic expectations of self, others and life. We then demand that others align themselves with our fantasy world (which is impossible) and when they can't we blame them for our misery. Rather than change our beliefs, we choose to move on to the next circumstance and try to bring about our fantasy utopia all over again with the same disapointing results. Hence the cycle begins again. Th only way off the merry go-round is to change the beliefs that create the attachments, that create the fantasy world, that demand that life align with us, that is impossible, that creates our misery. The mechanics - the "whys"and "how to's"

Next level: seek the silence between the attachments. As one said, hear the silence between the notes. I experience the stillness between my in/out breaths. Ok now I have silence rather than attachments or notes.

Next level and the real issue: Is there anybody out there? The real question: Is there a Creator? Is God simply another attachment to a belief system accepted? Is there really only silence? Or is God really just the collective consciousness of us all. Or maybe the universe itself? I submit that as you sit in the silence between your own thoughts, if you will look with an open heart simply willing to see if He is there or not. Willing to accept what you find and not explain it away as another false attachment, you will find that He is there and that He is Jesus Christ. Been there! Done it! He is there! My sincere hope is that you seek and let Him find you

-- Al Rosenblum (aartz@hsnp.com), September 21, 2000.

Al, you wrote a deep piece about letting go of attachments and expectations, and I felt "yes, I can do this, I'll practice, I'll meditate...", then you end it with the mother of all attachment expectations, a Christian slogan. blah.

-- (smarty@wannabe.one), September 21, 2000.

The attitudes/programming which we bring with us do affect our perception. i. e. This building is a good place to work, or this building is a bad place to work, after all its just a building.

This silence for me is extremely uncomfortable. I imagine a place without a mental anchor, picture a very dense white fog with no points of reference available not even what youre standing on: total sensory deprivation. (This isnt physically possible because you still feel your heart beat). There is: no pain, hunger, or no task that needs to get done. The only perception is what your mind creates. Your reality is your sense of self (you alone with you(do you feel real?)); your emotions begin to take over: first dis- orientation; then my fear of this aloneness(The emotions can be many and guess what if you give up the emotions it gets more interesting). Its at this point you can ask yourself whats important.

I don't like the space between the notes; I like my notes to over lap.

Al, you found what's important to you. Smarty, what did you find?

-- r (r.1@juno.com), September 21, 2000.

I'm still working on it.

-- (smarty@wannabe.one), September 21, 2000.

It's interesing to me to see that we're still debating the same question the wisest in the world solved almost three thousand years ago. Solomon truly wrote, "Is there anything of which one might say 'See this, it is new.' Already it has existed for ages." We so mistakingly think that because we have so many more gadgets, we must therefore be filled with greater enlightenment. Solomon, however, made a quest of discovery, uncovering the same views and ideas expressed in this discussion, and with far more wisdom I think, than we possess, and concluded the same; vanity. What we call attachments he called vanity. Maybe we should all log on to Proverbs and Ecclesiastes for a change. His conclusion after a lifetime of seeking and testing with great wisdom was this..."The conclusion when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person." NAS

-- J Cunningham (grateful@arbbs.net), September 22, 2000.

Perhaps Solomon had greater wisdom in your eyes, but not in mine and many others. Anyone that still says to "fear God" has not progressed more than his/her childhood fears in my eyes.

-- (smarty@wannabe.one), September 22, 2000.

Camera cuts to smarty opening can o' worms...Cue nightcrawlers...

My body shudders, my head shakes when I read/hear "fear God". Feel free to embrace one who strikes fear into your heart. No problem. Just not on my Tea of the Month Club "hit" list. You dig?

From Whispers of Eternity:

"Our dear ones promise to love us forever; yet when they sink into the Great Sleep, their earth memories forsaken, what value their vows? Who, without telling us in words, loves us everlastingly? Who remembers us when all others forget us? Who will still be with us when we leave the friends of this world? God alone!" --- Paramahansa Yogananda

-- Bingo1 (howe9@shentel.net), September 22, 2000.

Did Jesus not rightly say "You must become as Children!"

-- J. Cunningham (grateful@arbbs.net), September 22, 2000.

Scene two...Camera cuts to Bingo opening can o' worms...Cue nightcrawlers again...

OK, I'll bite. I haven't any what I term credible evidence Jesus said anything. For comparison, I quoted an excerpt attributed to the late Paramahansa Yogananda above. I did not hear him utter these gorgeous words. I have not spoken with any direct disciples who heard him speak these words or who have seen them written in his own hand.

I take it Yogananda is the author on faith. It looks and feels like other works attributed to him.

So I see what you mean by your "didn't Jesus say" post, J. Just a bit more difficult for me to accept,as Yogananda kicked the body in 1952 and Jesus in...we don't really know for sure, do we?

Nonetheless, I do not discount the words attributed to Jesus as powerful stuff, translation and interpretation aside.

Enjoy the weekend, good people.

-- Bingo1 (howe9@shentel.net), September 22, 2000.

"Did Jesus not rightly say "You must become as Children!" "

Ah yes, you've hit the bullseye in one sentence with one of my main problem with Christianity. Jesus was wise in a slick way for pushing to preach to the kids and exorting his disciples to be like children. Kids are very impressionable and much easier to brainwash than a wiser adult who had time to think many things through. So much easier to raise a child in fear into Christianity than to convert an adult. So ofcourse one "must become as Children" to see "the light". So clear your mind to a clean slate if you're not happy with yourself and life, and whichever religion gets to it first is "the truth".

Bingo, you put the pants in smarty-pants. I'm just a wannabe.

-- (smarty@wannabe.one), September 22, 2000.

Bingo - translation and interpretations aside, what about these words. 1. His death would be a restitution for the flaws and failures of the whole human race. Jesus who is given so much bad press, even as they nailed Him to the cross said, Father forgive them...

2. He resurrected form the dead. Top this one! He who died, came back to life 3 days later. Even death couldn't beat Him. Over 500 people witnessed it.

The best to you on your search.

-- Al R (aartz@hsnp.com), September 22, 2000.

Smarty- of course, you are right. Jesus was an evil genius that brainwashed little children. Hmmm, He wanted the world to know that He was paying for all of their failures so they would not have to. He knew we couldn't, so He did it for us. He also wanted the world to know that He was going to defeat death. He walked out of the grave 3 days after He died. Finally He wanted the world to know that if anyone would simply believe He did it for them, He would give them eternal life with Him in paradise.

Pretty mean stuff huh?

-- Al R (aartz@hsnp.com), September 23, 2000.

J Cunningham - The queen of Sheba thought Solomon was pretty smart too. Reading the book of Proverbs has led me to agree. Never Quit!! Perhaps those words have speial meaning for you.


-- Al R (aartz@hsnp.com), September 23, 2000.

Al R, I mean no disrespect to you, honest. But we're not on the same wire, man. You've just repeated the same stories I was fed as a kid.

I never thought Jesus was mean, on the contrary, and I still don't. But to communicate with me on the same wire now you'd have to go past the paroting of what you were taught.

-- (smarty@wannabe.one), September 23, 2000.


I appreciate your contributions on this thread. I no longer debate with christians on theology. I LOVE the teachings attributed to one called "jesus"-I just happen to have a very different take on them forged through the readings of St John of the Cross, Emmet Fox, Joel Goldsmith, and other christian mystics-I also consider demello in that vein.

Simply, the minute you define GOd, you have lost god.

The truth you have found serves you-and I am sure serves you well. We are brothers in this thing you call "christ"-except that is not the only name it goes by. If we are ever to have a dialouge, i would urge you to read Conversations with God, Book 4. I will take your challenge to read a text of your choice. We can both pray on what we have read and come back here.

God is unconditional love. UNCONDITIONAL LOVE. That is a beautiful thing-it requires nothing of me or him/her. NOTHING. That is what is meant by unconditional. God's grace has given me a life beyond my wildest dreams- a release from the torture of slow suicide-he expects nothing and gives me everything-and i expect nothing and give god everything.

-- FutureShock (gray@matter.think), September 23, 2000.

FS - Agreed on several counts. 1. Debating is counter productive and I seek it not. My only desire is to help others on their journey. 2. I would enjoy a dialogue 3. I will gladly read and also suggest readings.

FS - As I said before, I started my spiritual journey by studying eastern religious theories. Admittedly I am very rusty on details, but the essence has remained with me. It is my firm belief that the message of Jesus the Christ is far different than that of any other teacher. The emperical evidence indicates that the text of the bible is reliable. Over 5,000 documents have been recovered with over 98% agreement of all texts. An amazing stat for 5,000+ documents hand copied. No other document in history has had anywhere near that kind of emperical support. It is an amazing fact just in itself.

My suggestion for reading: John Ch-3 Shalom Al

-- Al R (aartz@hsnp.com), September 23, 2000.

Smarty - I also mean no disrespect to you or your beliefs. Nor do I wish to debate matters of faith. As for parroting: I have spent 20 years learning Greek and Hebrew (the original languages of the bible) so that I could read it without anyone elses interpretation. I have several degrees in that regard for what that is worth. Mine is an educated, thought out opinion and conscious choice to believe what I have shared. I invite you to share in the fruits of that work. If that is not your desire, then I wish you well and hope I do not offend you with my unabashed Christian faith. Shalom;


-- Al R (aartz@hsnp.com), September 23, 2000.

"...with rigid purpose an emptiness seen but buried for fear of confrontation with the holes in their souls." It truly is "much more than a roll of pictures." Thanks for starting this thread, FS. Perfect timing. I just got back from "Utah" and am grateful for the experience, though I do hope it'll be a while before my next visit. However painful, the trip was more than worth it. I used to believe the glass was half empty. Then I thought - Glass? What glass? Now I've learned the only real peace is in the eye of the storm, being surrounded by the "living water." I now choose to believe, "my cup overflows." I had/have to be emptied before I could/can be filled. Though if He had never "emptied Himself," we could never be filled. "God SO loved..." How so? More so than we could ever comprehend. Yes, unconditional love is awesome!! As He promises, "You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart." -Jer 29:13

-- (bygrace@thru.faith), September 23, 2000.


Would you tell me more about your first quotation?

{Good thread - all}

-- flora (***@__._), September 23, 2000.


It appears to me from your post that you also found the emptiness and then looked beyond it and found He who founded it all. Pardon if I paraphrase you incorrectly.

If that is so, then you are most fortunate as am I. Eph 2:8-9 would seem to be appropriate based on your name - 1 of my favorites.



-- Al R (aartz@hsnp.com), September 23, 2000.

"The emperical evidence indicates that the text of the bible is reliable."

Please read up on the Dead Sea Scrolls then come back and we'll talk.

-- gossip (handeddown@ages.com), September 23, 2000.

flora - see FS poem on old thread - "Author Intentionality." Go to uncatagorized - it's not too far down. I saw it as wandering in the wilderness of the soul, be it in search of eternal life or the abundant life. Thanks for that first quote in the Helen Keller thread, by the way. So true.

Al - Exactly!

The wilderness is a blessing in disguise. Blessed we shall be if we choose to seek the rainbow (peace) in the midst of the storm. If we keep on believing how rich we really are, the rainbows will be easier to see. His righteousness IS our wealth...and as with His unconditional love, so it is with His +R - our human intellect can only scratch the surface of the greatness of His grace...which I suppose is why we need to be exiled to the wilderness time and again - so we can have the scales removed from our eyes and see WHO and WHAT it is that really matters - freedom in Christ. All sorts of wealth can be found in the wilderness if we are willing to open our eyes. Mt 7:7 - "keep asking...keep seeking...keep knocking." 2 Cor 4:17,18 - "For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal." Heb 2:9 - "But we see Jesus..." As J said - all else is vanity, and chasing after the wind, which of course never lasts. It is well with my soul when I choose to see and believe in the invisible. Thank God that faith is the only requirement.

-- child of the King (bygrace@thru.faith), September 23, 2000.

Over 5,000 documents have been recovered with over 98% agreement of all texts. An amazing stat for 5,000+ documents hand copied.

True for the Old Testament but not the New Testament.

-- Debbie (dbspence@usa.net), September 23, 2000.

By Grace:

I am flattered you cared to quote my poem. You probably remember that i thought you were closest in understanding what my heart was saying when I wrote it.

Though our approaches to God and our views of theology differ greatly, we still seem to come to the same understanding. We just use different words to describe the experience.

In the end, words will never describe the experience-never-as the words immediately constrict it-St. Augustine simply stopped talking at the end of his life as he knew he could not put his experience of God into words.

We can have fun, discuss our beliefs, but ultimately it is living it, breathing it, that matters-Not conversion, not proselytizing- promoting religion does more harm than good as human filters block the true experience of god.

-- FutureShock (gray@matter.think), September 23, 2000.


Actually the 5,000+ figure IS only referring to the New Testament. Not yet able to get a general count on OT manuscripts but there are fewer.


-- Al R (aartz@hsnp.com), September 25, 2000.

Gossip - in response to your comment on the Dead Sea Scrolls

Dead Sea Scrolls

Some contend the Dead Sea Scrolls call into question other manuscripts of the bible. Here are excerpts from a published document about this controversy, titled The Dead Sea Scrolls and Christianity. John Allegro, one involved in the early work, charged that Christian scholars were holding back evidence that would refute Christian claims

Very early in the editing, John Allegro, who worked firsthand with the scrolls, charged : [T]he very scholars who should be most capable of working on the documents and interpreting them have displayed a not altogether surprising, but nonetheless curious, reluctance to go to the heart of the matter. The scholars appeared to have held back from making discoveries which, there is evidence to believe, may upset a great many basic teaching of the Christian church. (John Allegro, The Untold Story of the Dead Sea Scrolls, Harpur's Magazine, August 1966, p. 46)

The rest of the early team, Skehan, de Vaux, Milik, Starcky, Strugnell, wrote to the London Times, protesting, "We are unable to see in the texts the 'findings' of Mr. Allegro... It is our conviction that either he has misread the texts or he has built up a chain of conjectures which the materials do not support."

Britain's top Old Testament scholars wrote a letter to the Times of London protesting Allegro's statement : Nothing that appears in the Scrolls hitherto discovered throws any doubt on the originality of Christianity... The undersigned belong to different denominations or to none. They have no concern but to establish the truth and to see that these important documents are studied and evaluated with caution, scholarship, and a sense of proportion. (The Dead Sea Scrolls: Significance for Scholars, Times of London, 21 Dec. 1965. The signers were G.R. Driver, H.H. Rowley (who had recommended Allegro to the team), Peter Ackroyd, Matthew Black, J.B. Segal (Jewish), D. Winston Thomas and Edward Ullendorff (Jewish).) Allegro retracted his statements, admitting that he has stated as fact something he had read into the text. Millar Burrows, who was later added to the early team, says: It is quite true that as a liberal Protestant I do not share all the beliefs of my more conservative brethren. It is my considered conclusion, however, that if one will go through any of the historic statements of Christian faith he will find nothing that has been or can be disproved by the Dead Sea Scrolls. This is as true of things that I myself do not believe as it is of my most firm and cherished convictions. If I were so rash as to undertake a theological debate with a professor from either the Moody Bible Institute or Fordham University [a Catholic University] -- which God forbid -- I fear I should find no ammunition in the Dead Sea Scrolls to use against them. (Millar Burrows, More Light on the Dead Sea Scrolls, p. 39)


-- Al R (aartz@hsnp.com), September 25, 2000.

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