Friday, November 25, 2011


Early on, Simon and Garfunkel offered their take on the Beautiful Beatitudes with "Blessed"

A beautiful girl


Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you, falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
Words attributed to Jesus, viewed by millions worldwide over 2,000 years following his death as the Christ or the Messiah, in a Sermon delivered on a mountain within Israel while it was under Roman domination to ‘multitudes’ as reported by a disciple of Jesus’ deemed an Apostle by Him, Matthew, in his book contained in the Holy Bible. The Bible is a lengthy document (more accurately an amalgam of ancient documents) considered sacred including both an Old Testament (recognized and held sacred by those of the Jewish faith) and a New Testament based upon the basic Christian tenet that everything changed with Christ’s conception, birth, death and resurrection. This translation is of what Matthew is attributed with having documented is the English Standard Version, and these words are found in Chapter 5 of Matthew’s first book in the New Testament, one of four referred to as The Gospels, which document Jesus' life, with the gospel writers' focus primarily on his ministry as an itinerant preacher, really. These excerpts come from Matthew's Chapter 5, verses 3 through 11.

In his Sermon on the Mount, Jesus offered certain blessings, promises really, that He and His father, God, would grant those so described in each of his Beatitudes. Webster’s online defines beatitude as follows:

be•at•i•tude noun \bē-ˈa-tə-ˌtüd, -ˌtyüd\

Definition of BEATITUDE
1a : a state of utmost bliss b —used as a title for a primate especially of an Eastern church
2: any of the declarations made in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5:3–11) beginning in the Authorized Version “Blessed are”

I find the first definition offered as very revealing. These ‘blessings’ promised by Jesus are in fact to be a state of bliss for certain individuals is the message I received from looking up various definitions of the term beatitude with a lower case ‘b’ at the beginning. So He promises bliss, and of a specific nature for certain classes of people. I’ve highlighted those classes of people, so the highlights are my own, not contained in the English Standard Version, or any English translation version of which I am aware. I’ve highlighted them in order to review the list and make a point or two about the most important sermon ever delivered. Agree, disagree. Believe or not, like it or not, like Him or not, like His followers or not; it would be difficult to argue that Christ’s words on that day were anything but Earth-shattering and perhaps the most important words uttered. These words, and His life have altered the course of the species and life on the planet for the past 2,000 years like none other.
The most beautiful woman ever conceived: Judy Garland. What a concept!
So first He addresses the “poor in spirit.” Who are they. In my mind immediately I think of the despondent, those perhaps suffering from depression, having had such a diagnosis of my own and having been depressed as a kid, had one legitimate attempt to off myself over 25 years ago, and having worked as a counselor to those with mental retardation and mental illnesses and as a manager of programs for such persons for most of my adult life. I think also of persons of faith who have had tragedy befall them in life and stray from that faith or who still have belief in God but are not happy with the cards dealt to them or to others that they love. My experience has been that almost universally those suffering from either or both of these conditions in a chronic manner have not been primarily responsible for their outlook. Often their upbringing as children, when environment is beyond a child’s control, results in a PTSD sort of situation resulting in chronic depression. Or an action by another, rape perhaps, assault of a loved one or their unjust demise, enforced poverty or deprivation beyond one’s control often triggers these chronically “poor in spirit” folks in my experience. Genetics do play a part as well, I firmly believe, quite often. The promise Christ offers these wonderful people is a Kingdom, which to me implies empowerment, and heaven is never referred to as something of an after-life thing, necessarily. This promise of this empowerment does not necessarily mean it is deferred to the demise of the bag of bones carted around by us in this life. When I think of the poor in spirit I think of Judy Garland, my all-time favorite movie actress/singer, because I relate to her life so well. Born to a wealthy power family (I do not relate to that so much) and successful beyond belief with skills, charm, beauty and talent even as a tyke, a great career admired by millions, and yet suffering despondency and addiction. Perhaps Elvis Presley might fit that category. And Senator Thomas Eagleton
In the day, Neil Young, along with his musical pals Graham Nash, David Crosby and especially Stephen Stills put
into stark perspective

“Those who mourn” could be anyone who attains a level of consciousness in this life. But I think Jesus was more tuning in to those who mourn for people who not merely die, but are in a lesser condition than themselves. I think he felt a special bond to those who worry about the hungry, the impoverished, the enslaved, and the survivors of breadwinners and of those who suffer injustice. Mourning the loss of loved ones because they’ve loved us is something that’s easy and all of us do it. Christ found more appealing those who mourned for strangers, or even for those who do themselves and those they love harm, I do believe. That’s just my take. He promises comfort to those who mourn for those in desperate straits, which implies to me that those desperate straits, those yokes or what-have-you can be removed from others, thereby comforting ‘those who mourn.’ Funny, but what comes to mind here is Neil Young and his inspiration to write the song “Ohio” in response to the murder of 4 promising, bright and moral young student protesters at Kent State University by Ohio “law enforcers” and of Stephen Stills’ “Find the Cost of Freedom.” I believe that both Young and Stills mourned and continue to be deep mourners for others and very effective ones at that.
A very happy Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King, Junior said we have to get it done with peace and love
I’ll defer discussion of “the meek” till last. Next on Jesus’ hit parade of the specific audience he seeks to receive his message are “those who hunger and thirst for righteousness.” These people are those, I believe who actively engage on behalf of those who are treated unjustly. Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King, Jr. is one obvious example. Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Theresa, Nelson Mandela certainly would appeal to Christ I believe in this manner. And again, keeping in mind that these promises are not pie in the sky, nor something to wait for following our death and parked on a cumulo nimbus playing a harp (I looked, it just ain’t in ANY of those gospels), Jesus promises that thirst and hunger for righteousness shall be satisfied. Strong language indeed. He certainly didn’t mince words on this promise.
John Paul II went into a Roman prison to visit Mohammad Atta, the man who shot him trying to kill him
“The merciful” is pretty self-evident I think. Hitler and Stalin, for example wouldn’t fall into this category. Jeffrey Dahmer, NOT! ‘Reverend Jim Jones’ certainly wouldn’t qualify, neither would Pat Robertson. Neither Glenn Beck nor Rush Limbaugh either. I think of John Paul II visiting his attempted assassin in a Rome prison. I think of the recently deceased Betty Ford admitting her problem with alcohol and dedicating her reputation and life to aiding others so afflicted. And I often think of the desperate challenge perhaps of a rape victim, or the parent of a child victim of a sex offender who has found it within themselves to forgive their or their loved-one’s victimizer. These are heroes, I do believe, in Christ’s book. The one being reviewed here, the New Testament. And what he promises to the merciful is mercy, which I find fascinating. I know I’ve had resentments in my life. Which I’ve heard defined as reliving anger over and over. If the anger is justified it’s even worse. I take it out like an evil gem stone and polish it up from time to time and poison my soul with such resentments. If I find mercy and am able to forgive, then I am freed from the resentment, thereby earning and being blessed with mercy in return. Again, I don’t have to wait for that whole six-feet-under phenomenon for this benefit promised by Him. If I go further and work on behalf of obtaining mercy for my victimizer or the class of people I perceive as my victimizers, then the mercy I receive is that much greater.
Caylee Anthony, let's please have mercy on Casey
“Pure in heart” is Caylee Anthony. An infant. A puppy. An abused dog or cat. At our core I think all our hearts are pure, however attaining adulthood makes that Ivory Snow bar soap purity the only possible level perhaps. Even the white stuff on the old porcelain soap holders wasn’t claimed to be 100% pure, only 99 and 44/100ths percent pure if I recall correctly. John Paul II, Mother Teresa, MLK, Gandhi, etc. were all good guys. But none of them even, as pure as the Ivory Soap claim. And I dispute that claim for the white stuff too. Just cuz it floats don’t mean its all purity and virginity. But we all have purity at our center and it is who we are at the soul level. Caylee died before she lost it. Any SIDS victim does. Casey Anthony needs mercy. Caylee, the SIDS victims, and so forth have seen God if Jesus’ promise is true. We all will if His promise holds up (and I'm sure it will).  :)
A legendary man of peace: President Anwar Sadat of Egypt
“The peacemakers” who come to mind are of course your Anwar Sadats, Barack Obama by rendering freedom fries back into French fries and so earning the Nobel Peace prize following the alienation of the world by his predecessor, and such. But on a day-to-day basis peacemakers are office workers who go way beyond their job description and make sure fisticuffs don’t break out at the water cooler. Or friends who lend an unbiased listening ear to two arguing friends. Or members of 12 Step groups who help to mend lives and families without financial compensation or credit. We are the sons and daughters of God; and He promises that we shall be so named. Ya gotta luvit!
“Those who are persecuted for righteousness sake” are the jailed Nelson Mandelas, and perhaps WW II Jewish Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel, who, like MLK was tied in closely to an institution I love and was privileged to be a part of at a young age, Boston University. Persecuted not just for political beliefs, perhaps a Mom persecuted for going to court to get her child support money due her children, or a man going to court to exercise his right to safety and security by getting a restraining order or exercising his rights to safe housing against an assaultive and threatening spouse. Being judged simply for exercising rights is a difficult one indeed. This is persecution. Prejudgment, which is prejudice, is persecution and always lacking righteousness. He promises these folks who have had their rights stripped from them the same empowerment He grants the “poor in spirit,” which is that blessed kingdom of heaven. And if yer gonna wait till the next life for it, good luck toya!
A minister within the traditions of the United Church of Christ, the Congregational Church,
Reverend Jeremiah Wright
“You when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account” brings to mind the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, Barack Obama and Eric Holder. Reverend Wright was taken out of context by Fox News and the mainstream media with his inspirational “God Damn America” sermon! I wish I’d have been there for that barn-burner of an inspirational talk, if you read the entire text of that sermon, you’ll understand what I’m saying. And for Barack to be called a Muslim, a socialist and worse, when he’s a card-carrying Congregationalist—an active member of the United Church of Christ when he’s not running for President and being President and his politician opponents won’t let him worship, is exactly who Christ had in mind. And Eric Holder, being accused of dropping charges against fools who call themselves “New Black Panthers” and intimidate voters at the polls, when the charges were dropped by Bush’s Justice Dept. 11 days before President Obama was even inaugurated, simply because Eric and Barack are themselves black and accusing Attorney General Holder of running a racist Justice Department no doubt offends his sensibilities. He comforts these persecuted folks by comparing them to the prophets who have preceded them and been likewise persecuted despite their good motives, good intent and good actions. His promise is that they should rejoice at a great reward in heaven (which I submit can, will be and is here on this Earth, not on that cloud drifting by on a partly cloudy day after they’re dead and buried).

meek adj \ˈmēk\
Definition of MEEK: enduring injury with patience and without resentment : mild 2: deficient in spirit and courage : submissive 3: not violent or strong : moderate
— meek•ly adverb
— meek•ness noun
Examples of MEEK
a meek child dominated by his brothers
She may seem meek and mild but it is all an act.
Origin of MEEK
Middle English, of Scandinavian origin; akin to Old Norse mjūkr gentle; akin to Welsh esmwyth soft
Related to MEEK
Synonyms: demure, down-to-earth, lowly, humble, modest, unassuming, unpretentious
Antonyms: arrogant, bumptious, chesty, conceited, egotistic (or egotistical), fastuous, haughty, highfalutin (also hifalutin), high-and-mighty, high-handed, high-hat, hoity-toity, huffish, huffy, imperious, lordly, overweening, peremptory, pompous, presuming, presumptuous, pretentious, self-asserting, self-assertive, supercilious, superior, toplofty (also toploftical), uppish, uppity

Your genuinely meek unabashed author, Steve Alexander aka Unabashed Left acronym UL same as:
Unconditional Love
<3       :)       ;o)
“The Meek” I’ve also heard defined by biblical scholars as anyone who is downtrodden, the physically and mentally incapacitated especially, the addicted, the alcoholic, some even might argue it may include those with criminal proclivities and such. I am “The Meek.” I was bullied in junior high school, please see a series of articles on this blogspot headed “Bully, Bully, Bully” for details. As I’ve indicated, I’ve been diagnosed psychiatrically and also misdiagnosed at times. I’m a recovering alcoholic and addict. I am in poverty as defined by the federal and state government and presently disabled. Don’t, however, feel sorry for me. I’ve never had it so good, and nobody has it better than me! <3 Thank YOU Lord! The meek are the impoverished. The meek are the handicapped, the elderly, the illiterate, the discriminated against, etc…

I am a male of European descent. I’m a white guy. Western ‘civilization’ as I see it is primarily the history of attempted and frequently successful intimidation of the rest of humanity and the other species by males of European descent, going back to before the Romans ruled over Jesus when they were the occupiers of Israel and enslaved the Jews in the day. Before the Romans it was the Greeks. Then it was Europeans doing it in Christ’s name with things like their absurd and vicious “Crusades.” You had your Dark Ages, your era of European Colonialism (the British and French and Dutch ‘Empires’ etc. ad nauseum). In the 20th century we European guys brought you ‘the big one’ WWI, Hitler, Stalin and Mussolini among others. And since Truman and his European male cronies at the War Department made the choice to launch a first-strike nuke attack on two civilian targets at Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945 the U.S. materialistic demands, nationalism and consequent militarism have intimidated the world like no other killing machine in human history. In 1776 European slave owners for financial reasons broke from Europeans in London and wrote a couple of documents, the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution which enslaved millions for nearly a century, kept all but property owning males from any rights whatsoever, deprived women of even the right to vote for nearly a century and a half, and has kept women and the entrenched poor out of real power for 235 straight years! Let’s look at the antonyms of meek once again:

Antonyms: arrogant, bumptious, chesty, conceited, egotistic (or egotistical), fastuous, haughty, highfalutin (also hifalutin), high-and-mighty, high-handed, high-hat, hoity-toity, huffish, huffy, imperious, lordly, overweening, peremptory, pompous, presuming, presumptuous, pretentious, self-asserting, self-assertive, supercilious, superior, toplofty (also toploftical), uppish, uppity
Super-greedster Wal-Mart CEO Rob Walton
In other words the worst of the ‘un-meek’ are entrenched wealthy European males. It was true when Christ spoke the words, and has not changed at all. Now it’s Wall Street and the Republicans and the French and NATO in Libya, Britain and Tony Blair and George W. Bush and what-not. And what’s happening in Washington this week with these Debt Ceiling “negotiations” is just an obscene sideshow.
Charles and David Koch
The Koch Brothers
Have made it their lives' work to centralize wealth and power into the hands of
the few
in order to press down the 99% of us who are
We “the meek” are we disabled, impoverished, addicted, ethnically discriminated against, educationally deprived, mentally and emotionally challenged, persecuted religious believers, persecuted non-believers, atheists, agnostics, women, obese, ill, elderly, terminal patients, homeless, incarcerated, home renters, and all who are not in that group that’s dominated the world since Jesus uttered his beautiful beatitudes. And His promise to us is that WE SHALL INHERIT THE EARTH. Very strong promise right here. Wow. Check it out. I really like this one. No. Let me backtrack. I LOVE this one.
Just this past weekend in California, unarmed peaceful pacifist protesters
were abusedby police with pepper spray as the
OCCUPY MOVEMENT gains steam.

Remember that just a few short years ago we had crooks such as Agnew and Nixon sending our kids to unknown lands for armed occupations which were doomed to failure, and we DID force both their resignations and put an end to the U.S. aggressions in Southeast Asia. And remember that it was less than 10 years ago that Cheney, Rumsfeld, Bush and their crew lied to the world and to their own Secretary of State [Colin Powell], claiming nukes, chemical weapons and biological weapons in the hands of a nation a world away [Iraq] in order to justify aggression there due to the Billionaire's oil agenda. Remember that the slaughter at Kent State was well within our lifetimes.

Remember the heroes in Cairo, Alexandria and elsewhere who peacefully overthrew the triple-decade tyrant successor to peacemaker Anwar Sadat, Hosni Mubarak. And please be aware that those same heroes are back in the squares throughout Egypt this week peacefully compelling the military council in charge now to give up its cling on power rightfully earned by those who were meek for so long under the dictator Mubarak.
An Occupy Wall Street Victim
Heroes back in Tahrir Square in Egypt this week.
Meek No More!

But to claim our inheritance requires work. Real grunt work sometimes. It’s not like S. Robson Walton inheriting Wal-Mart from his Dad Sam Walton and making sure he moved in as CEO within 48 hours of his father’s death and then profiteering by farming out manufacturing to the Communist governors of China and undercutting the competition. Not like George H.W. Bush inheriting a fortune, a political name and contacts from his father, Connecticut Senator Prescott Bush, and then passing those same things on to an ignoramus like his son George W. Bush and the other one, Jeb Bush.
We have to work to earn ours. It’s time. We are uniquely qualified to bring the tyranny of millennia of European male domination to an end here in one really offensive dynasty, the United States of America today. Our economic, military and nuclear domination of the world post WWII has been epic, but we are at a crossroads. We’ve elected a non-European President who is well motivated. The right wing may appear ascendant at times, but in fact are simply desperate. They know that they are losing their grip. We cannot relent. We have to win the election by a huge margin in both houses and return Barack to the White House next year. We have to turn the majority around on the Supreme Court, absolutely. We need to plan for a long-term strategy which will put us in political power for more than one term at a time. We need to establish a Democratic majority once again and this time we need to revamp the Constitution in such ways as to ensure that there is an equitable distribution of political and economic power between the sexes, ethnicities, denominations, non-believers and those in rural and urban areas. We need to disarm militarily and stop intimidating the rest of the world. We need to eliminate our incessant demand for an endlessly expanding economy, more consumer goods and creating and exporting a carbon footprint which is killing the atmosphere. Instead we need to focus our future economic planning on planned economic stability or even negative 'growth' with more efficiencies and more equitable distribution of resources. We are liberals. And these are liberal economic philosophies for the era of global warming and global consumerism run rampant thanks to America's own policies since WWII.
Assassinated with a handgun of all things, Mr. Peace, John Lennon

Lennon told us it 'could only mean into the streets singing Power to the People" but it's gotta be peaceful!
As John Lennon said, it does mean ‘getting into the streets and singing power to the people!” It means demonstrations and huge ones. It means love-fest style demonstrations and the spread of Christ’s central message, perverted by many so-called followers over the centuries, which is a simple message indeed: Unconditional Love. Love of one and all. We all deserve it inherently. Give some today. Hug someone before today is over. Take and give as many as ya can. The revolution starts one hug at a time. As always I emphasize that this is my own liberal Christian perspective, I absolutely adore and give massive {{{{HUGS}}}} to my thousands of atheist and agnostic friends! Luv you guys and appreciate all your hard humanistic work beyond what words could express.
The Symbol Proudly Displayed By My Atheist Friends
And Which I Proudly Reproduce Here!

Unabashed Left: Right Lisa?
Lisa: Right on Uncle UL!  You know it! I love Jesus, peace, love and most especialamente...   HUGZZZZZZZZZZZ!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
And me and Uncle UL,
we hugged, and hugged, and hugged, and hugged.
We hugged for a real long time! :)
The end again.
That's just for now, though.
Uncle UL sez I get to write more here soon!
But don't tell ennybody.

In Jesus' precious name...


Please take the time to look at the work John Lennon's widow continues, especially her annual tribute to him, the Lennon Peace Prize at this link:


Anonymous said...

Beautiful! Right on target. Now, we have to unite.

Steve Alexander aka Unabashed Left said...

@ Anonymous, United People of the World works better for me than United States of America, but UNITED Nations with global sovereignty, not NATIONAL sovereignty would be a huge step in the right direction towards global disarmament and the eventual extinction of all firearms, bombs, missiles and weapons designed to kill people and other mammals. Thanks so much for taking the time to read and comment.

Peggy Brogan said...

What a post! Thank you, glad I found you. I was very happy to read your inclusion of the Rev Wright among those who suffer persecution for righteousness' sake.

Steve Alexander/Unabashed Left said...

Wow! Thanks, Peggy, for that endorsement. For those who don't know, Reverend Jeremiah Wright is in retirement but not too much so. He is taking Americans on trips to Africa to do broef stints of mission work, at a fee. I can't think of anything that would be finer than to travel to Africa with Rev. Jeremiah and do some good works for awhile. He's reuputedly very content in his 'retirement.,

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