The God Iohyot

A while back, I told a crowd of over 300 that the single biggest mistake humanity has ever made has been its acceptance, as part of its Cultural Story, of the idea of Separation.


According to this story, human beings are separate from each other.


This way of holding the human experience is soundly based in "Separation Theology." And what is that? Well, let me ask you a question. Do you think about God? If you do, what thoughts do you think? Do you think that there is a God? If you do, what do you think that God is? A Being in the sky? A loving but stern parent? Someone to fear? Someone to love? Both?


Whatever you think, if you think that there is a God at all, I'm going to wager that there is one thought you hold in common with billions of other people. I could be wrong, you could be one of the few exceptions that prove the rule, but if you are not, if you embrace the view of the vast majority, the thought that you hold in common with billions of others is this...


...God is separate from us.


Most of the world's people adhere to what I have come to call Separation Theology. The God of this theology is named Iohayot. That sounds a bit like a Native American word, but it is not. It's my personal acronym for I'm Over Here And You're Over There.


This is as valid a name as any of the others that humanity has come up with, including Allah, Brahmin, God, Jehovah, Krishna, or Yahweh, and it's far more descriptive of the actual concept of God held by most humans. Religion is not noted for producing widespread agreement among people, yet whatever the fervently religious may disagree on, most concur that God says: "I'm Over Here And You're Over There."


God then adds, "You may come over here if you wish, but there are certain things that you have to do." God then gives us the list of those things. That list has been read by many people in many different ways, and those different ways are sometimes called religions.


There is only One List, each of our religions assert, and we must not be confused into thinking that there are many, nor so perplexed by the False Lists put out by others that we pick the Wrong One.


This description of human theologies is simplistic in the extreme, yet it is not that far from being an accurate, if very basic, summary of our beliefs. And these beliefs are killing us.


Separation Theology-worship of the God Iohayot-will, if it continues much longer on our planet, bring an end to life as we know it on the earth. It has already begun to do so.

Many people believe that this is because, while God is, indeed, "over there" and we are "over here," God has to sometimes come "over here" to teach us a lesson. And so God comes down to punish us for our sins, make us pay for our offenses, or do whatever else is necessary to reestablish the natural order of things and bring Right into proper balance with that which is Not Right.


Under this philosophy the AIDS epidemic, the increasing violence on the earth, the degradation of our environment, the dismantling of our social systems, the erosion and destruction of our collective morals, the poverty and pestilence afflicting millions, are all signs of God's anger -- punishments from On High brought on by humanity's increasingly evil behavior.


The belief in a God who is far away from us, "over there," and who wants and needs or desires or demands something from those of us "over here," is what allows humans to grant themselves the moral authority to inflict punishments of their own upon those who they believe have ignored God's Word and disobeyed God's Commandments.


(This is the first of a three-part series. The second installment will be found here next week.)

With Pure Love,

Read this week's Letter to Neale here


Read a message from one of the prisoners impacted by our Prison Outreach HERE



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