Trans4mind Home Page
~ Making the Human Heart Visible ~
Inspiring Quotes of the Week + Bonuses!

Finding God Outside of Religion

By Jean-Claude Koven

To appreciate that we are living in difficult times, one need only spend a few moments catching up on the latest events in Washington, the Middle East, or Southeast Asia, or noticing the anomalous weather patterns plaguing the entire planet. We are clearly spinning out of control... a point that unsurprisingly seems to please the doomsayers, who are either predicting or abetting their personal versions of Armageddon. The current news also seems to play into the hands of religionists who claim that God is visiting his wrath upon us and we all need to repent before it's too late.

I don't quite see it that way. Yes, we are in a rapidly descending spiral, and yes, if we fail to alter our present course, we will certainly end up exactly where we are headed. But mostly I'm saddened that our vaunted leaders have not been completely truthful with us. They claim to be motivated by their love of God, but judging from their actions, their God seems to be an acronym for the trinity of commodities they treasure above all else: Guns, Oil, and Drugs. It is their passion for this G-O-D that fuels the war on terrorism. Saddam Hussein was not toppled in order to protect the Constitution or the civil liberties that have long been the bedrock upon which this great country was founded. To these G-O-D-worshipping statesmen (and women), the looming threat to America's future is not terrorism but the demise of the almighty dollar as the preeminent world currency.

You see, Saddam made the fatal blunder of denominating Iraqi oil in euros. Should that heretic concept ever take root worldwide, America as we know it would cease to exist. Foreign countries already own an egregious amount of the US debt - China alone has nearly one trillion US dollars in its coffers. America's total debt to foreign nations exceeds 2.2 trillion greenbacks. As long as the worldwide market for commodities is dollar based, value remains in our foreign creditors' holdings. However, even though US lender nations continue to purchase US Treasury bills, they also realize they are accumulating assets with potentially diminishing value. The first rumblings were already heard from the Chinese, who have announced that they will start diversifying their heavily skewed US dollar debt into other currencies.

Over the past few years, US interest rates have been unusually (some say artificially) low, saving America a bundle in interest payments. To date, the US has succeeded in making sure commodities are quoted in dollars, which means that non-debtor nations are virtually compelled to convert their currencies into dollars to shop in the world commodity markets. This helps keep buyers of US debt in the marketplace.

So far, most countries, including Saudi Arabia, the world's largest petroleum exporter, have honored their commitment to quote oil exclusively in dollars. But some oil-producing countries such as Venezuela and Iran may not continue to march in lockstep. If these "rogue states" and others begin to quote their oil in euros, the United States of America could be in for a very rude awakening. Currently the euro is worth approximately US $1.30; A barrel of oil that Americans purchase for 50 dollars costs members of the European Union only 46 euros. By comparison, three years ago the euro was valued at less than 80 cents, and a 60-dollar barrel of oil would have cost our European friends over 75 euros. If the commodities market goes to the euro any time soon, America will no longer have the upper hand.

Thus currencies, like empires, rise and fall. In the end, both are driven by their obsessive devotion to G-O-D.

Where does that leave the rest of us - the vast unwashed masses who know nothing of what really transpires behind the locked doors of the elite in London, New York, Riyadh, and Beijing? Where do we find our God?

As luck would have it, I am not the only one to ponder this question. The Gallup Organization recently conducted a poll titled "The Spiritual State of the Union: The Role of Spiritual Commitment in the United States" on behalf of the Spiritual Enterprise Institute (see: The fascinating data this study reports should provide months of interesting talking points for those who like to explore such matters. Two responses to the survey's questions impressed me the most. One is that 94 percent of the respondents said they believed in either God (82%) or a universal spirit or higher power (12%).

The second finding riveted my attention even more: in turns out the number of people claiming to be spiritual rather than religious is significantly on the rise. The 2006 Gallup study found that 40 percent of those interviewed considered themselves spiritual but not religious, compared to only 30 percent in a similar survey in 1999. Only 3 percent of the current respondents said they were neither spiritual nor religious. Obviously, people are feeling a pressing need to believe. The difficulty seems to be in finding what to believe in.

When one considers all this against the backdrop of global warming, sudden death-dealing weather patterns, shifting magnetic poles, increased solar flares, bird flu outbreaks in Europe, genetically modified foods, and the world being nudged ever closer to nuclear confrontation, it's not surprising that people are bewildered or that they conclude only a higher power can resolve the mess we've made of this exquisitely beautiful planet.

Personally, I'm part of the growing 40 percent. I don't resonate with those who claim to speak immutable truths stamped with the forged imprimatur of divinity. When people offer me the choice of "my way or the highway," I invariably pack my bags.

Where do you cast your opinion? Maybe our paths will cross somewhere along the road. Perhaps we can share a fire and tell stories deep into the night. I think I'd like that.

Copyright © 2007 Jean-Claude Koven / All Rights Reserved.
Jean-Claude Koven is a writer and speaker based in Rancho Mirage, CA. He is a featured weekly columnist for the UPI (United Press International) Religion and Spirituality Forum and the author of 'Going Deeper: How to Make Sense of Your Life When Your Life Makes No Sense,' recipient of both the Allbooks Reviews editor's choice award and the award for the best metaphysical book of the year.

More personal development articles at the Counterpoint Article Library

From our extensive site, you'll find good info on many topics using this search:

Looking for a better life?

Trans4mind Training - our series of online, interactive video workshops - presents the most effective methods of personal development, combined with support from expert life coaches. The human heart made visible.

A great way to support your Trans4mind Training is to use these popular and effective hypnosis downloads...

  • Public Speaking Fear ~ Banish speaking anxiety and nerves with hypnosis.
  • Motivate Yourself to Exercise ~ Build a powerful exercise habit that you can't break.
  • Get Rid of Fear & Anxiety ~ Stop worry and apprehension wrecking your life.
  • Self Esteem ~ Break the negative trance of low self esteem and give yourself a chance in life.
  • Create Your Own Reality ~ Use the power of your unconscious mind to transform your life.
  • Deeper Self Respect ~ Use hypnosis to connect with your true inner worth.
  • Detach From Fear ~ Tune out nervousness and anxiety with hypnosis.
  • Improving Concentration and Focus ~ Learn how to discipline, direct and command your mind to improve your performance.
  • Exercise Motivation ~ Give you powerful keys to getting back on track with your exercise - and staying there.
  • Overcoming Shyness ~ Provides an invisible security blanket allowing you to develop social ease and overcome shyness.
  • Quick Confidence Booster ~ An audio hypnosis session that's specifically designed to get you (quickly!) back on track.
  • Stop Negative Thoughts ~ Learn powerful hypnotic techniques to stop negative thoughts before they start.
  • Overcoming Procrastination ~ Let hypnosis help you get on with what you need to do, when you need to do it. Let nothing hold you back.
  • Think Thin ~ Use hypnosis to re-train your brain and lose weight naturally... that's how to get and stay slim.
  • Fall Asleep Fast ~ Relearn how to fall asleep fast and enjoy a good night's sleep.
  • The Next Level ~ Designed to radically boost your performance in any field. It's based on a technique used by top athletes and other successful people to help them make a big stride forward.
This is our selection of favorites, but there's a session for every need! Choose from over 800 Hypnosis Downloads...
Search now on an issue that interests or concerns you...
Get a free Hypnosis Download at Facebook

Welcome to the New Wave in Meditation Technology

Click here to learn more about the iAwake Profound Meditation Program
The iAwake Profound Meditation Program is a way of enhancing your meditation practice, making meditation not only easier and more enjoyable, but also more efficient and effective.
Profound Meditation provides the smoothest, deepest, richest, most profound meditation experience available anywhere...
Here is a link to a free 20-minute track from iAwake Technologies - a sample of the type of tools that will deepen your meditation immediately and help you quickly become a successful meditator. It's the opening track of iAwake's flagship product, the Profound Meditation Program, called the iAwake Experience...
Learn More and Download the iAwake Experience
I think you'll find this technology a tremendous aid on your transformative journey of becoming your best and most creative self - and you can get started today!
Copyright © 1997-2016 Trans4mind Ltd