Diocesan Metropolitan Kottayam & Outside Kerala, Syrian Jacobite Church
President of Bible Society Of India

All the Christians are chosen and called by God. As we enter into the third millennium, all the Christians around the world should be unified and should submit them self for the work of God to build His Kingdom. The Christian church is about to face the enormous challenge caused by the problems of modernity. Our contemplative society is facing multifarious problems caused by the circumstances, social clashes, religious fanaticism, terrorism etc.etc. Within all these adverseness, Christian values are to be accepted and respected.


Praise be to the Triune God! Let the name of our Lord be glorified. In this magnificent conference, let us praise the Lord, as we are receiving the Grace and Strength from God for the past 107 years for the proclamation of the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. As we all know, we are living in the first stage of the third millennium. When we entered into the third millennium, there was a lot of concern about the future of the Church. Especially, an important point raised by Roman Catholic Scholars of western countries was of high significance. The Church in the first millennium was of one pattern and was unified. But in the second millennium, Church was more divided. Now, as we enter into the third millennium, all the Christians around the world should again be unified and should submit them self for the work of God to build His Kingdom. This is one of the very beautiful thoughts.

In the Gospel according to John we read that Jesus prayed for His disciples, ‘The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one.’ One of the very important characters of the Church is its oneness or the unity. While we peep into the history of the Church, we notice many facts that happened to the vision of God about the Church. I would like to talk to you today about the mission of Christians, God is intending about us, in any circumstances wherever we are.

All Christians are intended to be the light of the world and salt of the earth and should acquire enough strength to respond to any adverse circumstances we come across. For this great cause and responsibility bestowed on each one of us, we should take utmost care, not to defile our body or mind and get prepared to be with the quality to become the light of the world and salt of the earth. In the circumstances we live upon, there are many challenges we may need to face. As the centaury turns, the social atmosphere in our State of Kerala faces an enormous challenge not only for the Christian families, but also to every people in different walk of life.

Let me share one story, which comes to mind, which is narrated by a German litterateur. A King by the name Midas had gone on searching for a scholar in his country. He searched and searched all the forests in the country for this scholar. After an extensive search, the King could find out the man. The King was so happy at last that he could find out this great man. King asked the Scholar to tell 'what is the most desirable and attractive thing in this world.' The man stared at the King and remained silent. On compulsion from the King the Scholar asked the King ‘O thou wicked man and embodiment of swift destruction, why are you looking for most desirable thing in the world; the most desirable and attractive thing for those  who are the cause for the curse of the society in this world is to die.’ He was upholding the fact of lack ness of the confidence of the modern man to live.

Thoughts of St. Paul who told “For me to live is Christ and to die is gain.”, the man who tasted His Lord and proclaimed the word of Gospel, considering sum total of his life, had very distinctive vision about life compared to that in this story. The state of keeping aloof from creator God is same as the state of being dead. In today’s world, Churches have a great mission to accomplish for giving a great hope to the mankind. We are fast advancing to the modernity. We are adopting various aspects of the western culture. The Christian church is about to face the enormous challenge caused by the problems of this modernity. Our contemplative society is facing multifarious problems caused by the circumstances, social clashes, religious fanaticism, terrorism etc.etc.

Within all these adverseness, Christian values are to be accepted and respected. Immediately after the earthquake in Gujarat, I had the opportunity to visit those places hit by the calamity. While I was visiting and communicating with some volunteers of the refugee operations Camps, I could observe many Christian organizations were actively participating in the operations. I asked some of the Christian Groups there regarding the approval and acceptance of their service. One of the group member had told me that the common people give due respect for their services rendered, however there were people who view their activities with a suspicious eye. We are called by Jesus Christ to be the light of the world and salt of the earth. It is the responsibility of each one of us to learn and convey the good news of the Gospel. Church as whole is called for the proclamation of the word of God even in the most adverse and hard circumstances.

One Philosopher had explained it as that Church should be like Roses inside the thorns. Even amidst the adaptation of the modernity by the society, we should be able to discard the wrong and deadly perversions and to lead a life of faith and hope in our God. All the Christians are ‘Called’ and each one is indebted to understand the mystery of the world and the mystery of the word of God in the light of the given the Gospels. This is one of the most important message I would like to share with you in this ecumenical meeting. This Maramon Convention fellowship and all our Church fellowships are called and made where ever they are, for giving hope for the mankind, which is immersed in utter despair. In this respect we should induct guidance and follow the foot steps of St.Paul with his words “For me to live is Christ and to die is gain.” And “But may it never be that I would boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.”

Church is the congregation of the believers and head of that congregation is Jesus Christ. One Philosopher had told about Church as an undefined entity. Bible tells us of many things about the Church. Even though it is not been defined by any of the Church fathers, Scholars or Philosophers. Church is the one which lead the believers in the faith for ever. The Church, Jesus being the head of it, is entrusted to the Holy Spirit of God for its perseverance and guidance. Church should be able to with stand and respond to the most adverse circumstances it may have to face with. The Christian Churches should not be lessened with its exhibitive activities, but it should be the lantern, which give light to the society. Churches should be meek and with the wisdom of God to be aware about the stewardship entrusted to it for strengthening the believers in the faith of God and goodness to the society.

Apostle Paul evaluate his life in the second Epistle to Corinthians 4:8-10 “We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body.” These words are giving us courage and wisdom to respond to the troublesome circumstances of this age in which we all are living. We are a called society and entrusted with the Christian responsibilities, witness and message. Who ever we are, whether a Bishop, Reverend or a Layman we all are entrusted with our own responsibilities and I pray to God that the Holy Spirit may lead us to discharge it fruitfully. Let all the Churches be lead by the Spirit of truth in this third millennium as promised by our Jesus Christ. In any age of time, if the Church happens to walk in a wrong direction, it is the responsibility of each one of us to pray for the Church so that it comes back and walk in the right direction in the truth and in the guidance of Holy Spirit. It is the necessity of the Christian congregation to keep up the fraternity of our fellowship and set up the Christian Model in our Country.

I am concluding my message with a story, which I read in a book written in the second centaury. In that it says that when St. John, the beloved Apostle of Jesus was walking through the street of Ephesus, there was a Philosopher speaking about the meaninglessness of wealth. Two young volunteers sold out their properties and bought two pieces of pearls in front of the Philosopher. In order to demonstrate the meaninglessness of wealth the Philosopher had hit on the pearls with a hammer and crushed it and declared that all the wealth of this world is perishable as he demonstrated about the pearl. During that time Apostle John was passing by. St.John told the Philosopher this is a a reckless aversion to this world. even though he could attract a huge crowd for his wrong Philosophy, Jesus had already cursed this aversion. As the wrong medicines can not cure the illness, wrong teachings can not heal the afflictions of the mind and spirit. St. John reiterated to the Philosopher the words of Jesus from the Gospel "Jesus said to him, If you wish to be complete, go and sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me." (Mat 19:21 )

The world which is inflicted by the addictions should be healed with the strength of the faith on the cross. This is the biggest message needed for the contemporary world. The Christian society is being called to live among these worldly addictions. The wicked ness and avarice of current mankind is the root cause for the turbulences and afflictions of the society. As per St.Paul ,"I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me." (Gal 2:20) This gives the great message to the each one of us to have the experience of of living in Jesus.

[Key Note Address delivered at the ecumenical meeting of Maramon Convention 2003. (Original in Malayalam)]

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'God is our refuge and strength, A very pleasant help in trouble.' Weeping and mourning are part of human life. Even the ability to cry and shed tears is a gift of God. True sorrow results in forgiveness. When you become broken hearted over your sin… then only God will comfort you.

“God is our refuge and strength, A very pleasant help in trouble” - Psalm 46:1

Each of Us experience disappointments and sorrow in the course of our lives in this world. Each time while we encounter with troubles, we think whether I could escape from my problems and restore peace. The deeper the pain the more elusive the comfort is. The Bible tells us in Mathew 5:4 “Blessed are they that mourn; for they shall be comforted”. Jesus condemned the superficial laughter of the world and offered blessings and comfort to those who mourn.

When things start falling apart in life, we are in pain because of the wounds. Thoughts like “How could this ever happen?” and at times we even muster courage to question the Lord, and fail to realize that Almighty is in perfect control. During that time we think patience and peace are all strange words. It is during these testing times for all to claim in the Lord and even in our basic faith.

The most important thing we need to do is to cling on to the Lord and seek His grace. Our Lord is good and gracious he will definitely deliver and strength us. We should not lose hope. Pray constantly and experience the turn around in life.

There are instances when we lose a person in our life whom we loved so dearly. We experience a broken heart, unable to accept the loss of the precious one. We feel utterly lost and terribly lonely. We feel that there is none to comfort. During this period turn to the Lord and shed tears under his feet.

Weeping and mourning are apart of human life. Even the ability to cry and shed tears is a gift of God. Crying cleans one emotionally. People weep when they lose loved ones. It is normal and helps us deal with the grief. Tears are a God given way to cope with sorrow, loneliness and hurt. In II Timothy 1:3-4, we find that Timothy was weeping because of terrible discouragements and defeat in his ministry.

True sorrow results in forgiveness. When you become broken hearted over your sin… then only will God comfort you. Many Christians today do not mourn over sin. Blessed and happy are those that mourn. Peace with God brings inward purpose and satisfaction in our hearts. Therefore the person who mourns in his spirit, seeks God and will find true happiness.

“Blessed be the God and father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the father of mercies and God of all comfort” II Corinthians 1:3

Lord Jesus himself shed tears when Lazarus died and he knows the anguish of a bereaved soul. Pray to the Lord asking him to comfort you and be with you when you walk through the valley of tears and sorrow. Ask the Lord to engulf you with the Lord’s comforting presence and surround you with strength & comfort. The Lord is your heavenly father he will lead you on….

How to deal with discouragements?

  1. We have to focus our minds on the better world to come.
  2. Strive to bear up under trials and hardships.
  3. Continuing in faith no matter what life might bring.
  4. Always look to Jesus. Jesus himself said, “Be of good cheer; I have overcome the world”. John 16:33.
  5. Continue to hold to the truth at all cost. We should never decide anything through emotionalism. Things like “what if” this would not have happened etc.,
  6. Strength ourselves in the Lord. David was faced with most difficult situations but David strengthened himself by praying continuously and fervently.
  7. Turn to the word of God for strength and comfort. All human beings have their weakness, but God’s power and strength never diminishes.
  8. The New Testament scriptures gives us comfort and strength. Acts 20:32 and 1 Peter 5:8-11. Satan is the source of all evil and suffering. God is able to mend or repair us and make us strong. Whatever pain we have, the eternal God is the God of comfort.

Disappointments, discouragements and hardships will come. We need to be steadfast and unmovable ourselves. Our Lord is certainly able to comfort Us. One day we shall reap if we don’t faint. Let us continue to strengthen ourselves in the Lord. It is during these times when we have the most opportune time to be in the Lord.

May the Lord Comfort Now and Always.

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The blessings of God themselves need not make any one blessed. It is what one becomes through the grace of God, that one becomes really blessed. Poverty in spiritual realm cannot be a blessing in itself. But those who are aware of the fact that they have spiritual deficits, are blessed because they may crave for more spirituality and this can lead to heavenly blessings.

1. "Blessed are the poor in spirit; for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." (St.Matt. 5:3)

The poor in spirit are those who realize what they are and that all the good things they have, are the free gifts from God, given to them in spite of their unworthiness and sinfulness. They also know that all the good things they have received, are not given to them to be used for their own selfish ends, but for the common good of all mankind. Such people are blessed, as all heavenly blessings will come upon them.

Poverty in spiritual realm cannot be a blessing in itself. But those who are aware of the fact that they have spiritual deficits, are blessed because they may crave for more spirituality and this can lead to heavenly blessings.

The following verses make it clear that every good thing comes from God. "He Himself gives to all mortals, life and breath, and all things." (Acts 17:25). "Every generous act of giving with every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights." (St.James 1:17). "In Him, we live, move and have our being." (Acts 17:28). Even the desire to do good comes from God. "It is God who is at work in You, both to will and to work for His good pleasure." (Phil 2:13)

With God, we can do anything, we have evrything, and we are everything. Without God, we can not do anything, we have nothing and we are nothing. This is poorty in spirit. Following are the examples of those who were poor in spirit:

  1. David the King, in all his humility and devotion to God, put on a linen ephod and danced before the Lord, when the ark of the Lord was taken in procession, from the Obed-Edom to the city of David (II Sam 6:14)

  2. When John the Baptist was asked who he was, he emphatically replied that he was not Messiah. When he was asked whether he is Elijah, he replied, "I am not". "Are you the prophet", the deputation that came to him, asked. The reply again was "no". He then continued to say, "I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness. Make the way of the Lord." (St.John 1:19-23)

  3. When Elizabeth the mother of John the Baptist said, what a great honor it was that the mother of the Lord should visit her, St.Mary humbled herself and praised God for having looked upon her lowly estate. (St.Luke 1:43, 46-48)

  4. When St.Peter healed a forty-year old man born lame, people were wonder-struck. St.Peter said, "You Israelites, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety, we had made him walk?" (Acts 3:12). "And by faith in His name, His name itself, had made this man strong, whom you see and know, and the faith in Jesus had given him the perfect health, in the presence of all of you" (Acts 3:16)

  5. St.Paul spoke of himself that it was God's grace that did everything in him. "By the grace of God, I am what I am and His grace towards me has not been in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is in me," (1 Cor. 15:10). He asks "What have you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7) He also says "I am do all things in him who strengthens me." (Phil 4:13). All divine virtues come from this virtue of humility. For example, gratitude to God, love of God and His children, generosity, forgiveness, humilty, respect and submission. Such people will be free from pride, jealousy and selfishness. Hence some people give a new version to this verse "How blessed are the poor in spirit; for, theirs is the kingdom of heaven."

Prayer: Help us O'Lord, to see our nothingness and your blessings in every one, so that we may love you and respect one another.

2. Blessed are those who have the conviction that the glory of their good deeds goes totally to God; for they rejoice in the Lord to the full.

Since they do not claim any share in the glory of their good deeds, they will not desire any recognition from people and will not seek any publicity. "Not to us O Lord, not to us, but to your name, give glory, for the sake of your steadfast love and your faithfullness" (Ps. 115:1) Our Lord says, "So whenever you give alms, do not sound trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be praised by others. Truely I tell you, they have received their reward. But when you receive alms do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing; so that your alms may be done in secret and your Father who sees in secret will reward you" (St.Matt. 6:2-4)

Prayer: Help us O' Lord to understand that all glory is due to you only, and to praise you whenever we are praised.

3."Blessed are pure in heart; for they shall see God." (St.Matt. 5:8) They will have peace and power.

Purity in heart means unadultrated love of God. Love of God shall not be mixed with love of money, wordly pleasure and fame. Our Lord said, " Who ever comes to me and does not hate father, mother, wife, cannot be my desciple. Whoever does not carry his cross and follow me, can not be my disciple." (St.Luke 14:26-27). St.James had the same meaning in mind when he said, "purify your hearts, you double minded" (St.James. 4:8)

The motive behind those who accept monasticism is the desire to have personal loyalty and love of God.

Prayer: Grant us O Lord the purity of heart, so that our love for you may be free from all other love.

4.Blessed are those who give primary importance to the glory of God in their personal lives; for all their needs will be satisfied.

Our Lord says, "First strive for the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all things (what to eat, what to drink and what to wear) will be given to you as well". (St.Matt. 6:33) This is the promise of our Lord and we should have faith in His help. Again our Lord says, "Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away" (St.Matt. 24:35) Many are blessed by God when they seek the glory of God.

Prayer: O Lord, help us to work for you and your kingdom, and give second place to everything else.

To be continued...

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Towards A Concept of Spiritual Citizenship


Identity is a complex and fluid entity. It is compacted of diverse ingredients: emotional, mental and spiritual development, social and economic standing, ethnic and religious status, the prevailing political and ideological climate, and so on. If identity were a purely internal thing it would not have been vulnerable to manipulation by organized external forces. Human identity integrates matter and consciousness. The wholeness of human identity depends on the harmony of the local and universal. When identity is defined purely in material and local terms, it tends to precipitate conflict and alienation.

Identity is a complex and fluid entity. It is compacted of diverse ingredients: emotional, mental and spiritual development, social and economic standing, ethnic and religious status, the prevailing political and ideological climate, and so on. This interplay of internal and external circumstances makes any attempt to define identity a daunting task. If identity were a purely internal thing it would not have been vulnerable to manipulation by organized external forces. If it were only a superficial label, it would not have carried the explosive emotive force it does.

Human identity is defined either positively or negatively. A person may experience his identity in terms of who he is. Alternately, he may define his identity in terms of who he is not. A Hindu, for instance, is one who lives by the Vedic vision of life. Alternately, he is one who is not a Muslim, or a Christian or the practitioner of any other religious tradition. In the latter instance, a person’s Hindu identity need not involve any fidelity to the spiritual core of Hinduism. When that is the case, his religious identity could become a liability and an embarrassment to the identity of the faith he professes. The negative or reductive definition of religious identity breeds conflictual relationships among religions. As a rule, those who are most eager to fight religious wars are the ones who respect the spirituality of their religion the least.

Human identity integrates matter and consciousness. The concept of identity is meaningless in respect of a disembodied spirit. Also, a dead body -all matter and no consciousness- has no identity. If it has any identity at all, it is the identity of a corpse, and not of a person. Death, in that sense, is a great leveler. In terms of existence, matter is local and particular; whereas human consciousness is necessarily universal. The wholeness of human identity depends on the harmony of the local and universal. When identity is defined purely in material and local terms, it tends to precipitate conflict and alienation.

Karl Marx’s critique of capitalistic and industrial culture -that it “things” human beings- is profoundly valid here. Materialism ascribes exclusive validity to matter. “Matter alone matters” is the creed of materialism. Within such an outlook, identity tends to be increasingly and exclusively associated with the material dimensions of a person’s life. For obvious reasons, this aggravates covetousness; for identity is a matter not so much of being, as of having. The “having mode” of identity narrows the distinction between person and possession. You are what you have; and in order to be, you must have whatever you may. This is the end-of-the-road for human identity in a crassly materialistic way of life. Covetousness of every kind is cancerous to human identity because it equates a person with his possessions in his own consciousness. Covetousness, in other words, reduces and kills consciousness.

The danger in a materialistic definition of identity is that it obscures the universe of mystery there is at the core of human personality. It is this core of mystery that serves as the bulwark against manipulation and exploitation by external forces, including systems and centers of power. This mysterious inner core is also the seat of spiritual values such as love, compassion, justice, service and so on. It is from this source that the counterbalancing pull against self-centeredness stems and stabilizes human nature. Without this, we lack the ability to recognize others as our fellow human beings, which is the price we pay for a reductive definition of human identity. Given the inalienable spiritual truth that the whole of humankind belongs together, or are intertwined by the bond of spiritual kinship, it becomes inevitable that the reductive definition of the identity of others effects a reductive realization of one’s own identity. As a result, identity assumes a conflictual orientation. The realization of one’s identity seems to require the denial or curtailment of the identity of others. The ‘otherness’ of others tends to be exaggerated and demonized, with unfortunate consequences.

It is because human identity comprises not only matter but also consciousness that spirituality is basic to humanity. Spirituality implies both an indwelling and transcendence of the material order. It is through the medium of matter that the material order is to be transcended. That which is to be transcended is also the medium for its transcendence. To jump above the surface of the earth, for instance, one has to stand on the earth. But the impetus to transcend the material order is not innate in matter. It is a function of consciousness. God is pure or blissful consciousness. In God, consciousness exists in its perfection so that the divine consciousness has the capacity to engage the material order in a way that transforms it. While this is a possibility in us, it is never an assured certainty in any human being. That is because consciousness is never fully evolved or perfect in human beings.

The function of spirituality is to activate and accentuate consciousness. This happens through communion with God. And the enlarged or liberated consciousness that results from this is meant to engage the world at large in love, justice and compassion. God is the universe of human freedom. The liberation that spirituality effects is the liberation from the narrow prison of reductive consciousness that distorts our understandings and perverts our responses. The sign of authentic spirituality is the eagerness to intuit and earth the universal in the local as well as to transform the local so as to reveal the divine presence hidden in every part of creation.

The spiritual problem in a reductive definition of identity is the idolatry of the local. This awakens what is mean and low in human nature. Without exception, the perpetration of injustice, cruelty and discrimination has been preceded by the propagandist distortion of the identity of intended victims. Even more regrettably, this involves the distortion of the identity of God. It is the idolatrous mindset that degrades God into an item of communal ownership. God, who is acknowledged to be the omnipresent Creator and Sustainer of the whole of creation, is caricatured as a petty and partisan being, whose concerns are limited to a particular sect or community. This is the pseudo-theological cauldron in which sectarian and conflictual sentiments are brewed. Every communal project is an insult to the identity of God. God as God can never be an alibi for hate and aggression. For Ayodhya to be turned into a theatre of communal conflict, for instance, it is necessary that the identity of Lord Ram and the idea of the temple be projected in unspiritual terms. The spiritual nexus between human identity and the identity of God needs to be insisted on globally.

We have been victims of centuries of unspiritual conditioning. Before human beings were fitted with these communal blinkers, it did not take any special effort to recognize that human beings are both local and universal. Even when we drag our feet through the mud of mundane existence, our heads are among the stars. Embedded though we are in the local, our immortal longings transcend time and space. We are the confluence of the local and the global. We are “glocal”. This has been the intuition of every spiritually awakened person. In the wake of materialism, however, the lamp of universality hidden under the bushel of material particularity began to fade out, escalating the darkness of divisive identities and ideologies. In such a predicament, the more materially ‘advanced’ a culture is, the more violent and destructive it tends to be.

That being the case, it is a matter of grave concern that the ‘tyranny of the local’ persists and prospers in the global village, as we know it today. Globalization as a mere economic and cultural construct, without a commensurate spiritual underpinning, is a contradiction in terms. In the absence of a spiritual definition of human identity and global reality, globalization has paved the way for Euro-American ethnocentrism, which is being projected as the global project. In such a context, world peace tends to be understood, as peace was understood in the days of the Roman Empire, as the acceptance of American over-lordship -military, economic, cultural- by the rest of the world.

JSurely, the time has come for engaging seriously the prospect of global citizenship, without which globalization will remain an exercise in dishonesty. But, it is equally certain that the framework for globalizing identities does not exist in globalization per se. Spirituality is the only authentically universal phenomenon we have ever known. It is a scary prospect, especially for non-western societies, that globalization remains defiant of the discipline of spirituality and pursues its skewed economic and commercial agenda ruthlessly. Today it has become a spiritual imperative to redeem the idea of a global village through a commitment to global brotherhood and neighbourhood. A global village in which humankind continues to be fragmented along national, cultural, religious, ethnic, and ideological divides is a grotesque gimmick or a mendacious myth.

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Love and fidelity should rule over everything what they touch and breath. People from different strata of society always bless the arranged marriages; care, affection and best wishes from all of them are the companions of the new couple, where as a love marriage creates conflicts and acrimony among the dear and near ones by showering ill winds or rivalry among different fiancés or fiancées. Marriage takes place in Heaven, the second heaven the church, if not, the lustful life may crash-land untimely into an alien territory of abysmal darkness.

Dating prior to marriage is an unprecedented and unchristian cultural wave of terrorism that hit the shores of social nexus and religious norms zealously cherished till the former part of the last century. This new club culture has almost wiped out the traditional values and religious concepts and practices prevailed since the beginning of time of arranging marriages in accordance with the wishes and blessings of parents and relatives. The synchronizing purity and unity of body, mind and spirit (soul) in thought, word or deed is indispensable for Temple worship, the place where the culmination of the totality and universality of our devotional worship come in unison with. The H.temple is the congregating venue of the holy people to worship the Holy God. He lives only in pious hearts (Mt.5: 48;Rev.3: 20-21). There is no sex in Heaven because it is the world of saintly spirits. The living man on this earth also is a spirit, tethered with an invisible cord, like an embryo’s umbilical cord in its mother’s womb, to the perishable body.

The ascetics are helped in liberating from the clutches of physical bondage and getting in communion with the cosmic world of spirits, like that of St.Paul’s teletransportation (2.Cor.12: 3) to Paradise, by the involuntary function of the cord that is always connected between the inner and physical man. The total worth of this mortal body, basing on the cost of elements contained in it, may not go beyond $10. This delicate frame is only a carcass, a great nothing, devoid of the Spirit of God. Man is more than his biology or chemistry just as adding a one to the left of zeros multiplies the value of them in Geometrical Progression. God is that great one or unit. It is the Spirit that gives life; flesh is of no avail. (Jn.6: 63; 15:5) Man is created in the image and likeness of God so as to replenish this earth left void by the fall of Lucifer and his legions. They are not of this world; even as I am not of this world...I consecrate myself, that they also may be consecrated in truth (Jn.17: 16-23).

Man, the agent of God, is endowed with sex for the dissemination of the race by reproducing as many angels like men to fill the vacancies (rooms) eventuated by the fall of Lucifer (Jn.14: 2). Procreation means creating for somebody or playing the role of God. As representative and resemblance of the H.Trinity on earth, Adam was granted permission for the procreation and replenishing the earth. When Adam was alone, he represented the H.Trinity in a miniature form in the celestial as well as in biological dimensions. Eve was created from Adam and children were born by their union only after the fall. Sexuality was in its dormant stage before the fall. This can be correlated by a loose analogy with the Nicene Creed statement: “The H.Spirit proceeds from the Father; and who with the Father and the Son is worshipped and glorified”. This comes to be true in the empirical, say biological sense as well.

That which proceeds from the father begets the progeny, the seeds of which are already in the loins, together with the union of the mother who receives the seeds. Children are a thing of beauty and joy (worship) and glory for the parents. The anomaly created from the confusion about the H.Triune, if any, become transparently clear when we realize that there is no femininity in the celestial plane. What I want to drive home is this. Parenthood and the procreation process is a homogeneous and sanctimonious duplicity of the work of the H.Trinity through man reflecting the nature and work of the H.Triune. The main two commandments to worship God in truth and spirit and procreate the species and caring them with celestial love are the sacrosanct work of God entrusted upon us. The clerical hierarchy is the ambassadors of God for the Altar and the laity mainly is meant for procreation, supplying holy men for the Altar and good Samaritans for the care and nourishment of the society at large. The sex organs lie out side the boundary of the soul, which is being constrained in between the waist and its apex at the zenith of our head, just like the position of an embryo in its mother’s womb.

The similarity of connecting the inner man with the physical one by an invisible cord is visibly correlated by the union of two complementing partners as one body (Mt.19: 6), doing the metabolic functions by exchanging enzymes and other nutrients for their physical and mental growth, as Adam and Eve were once together in one body. They attain the cyclic maturity of their bodies and spirits by complementing spiritual and physical communion in a span of lifetime. Celibates or spinsters, as well as a married couple, do the work of God for the transformation of themselves and the dear and near ones. Spiritual metamorphosis comparatively is inhibited in a family couple because of the duplicities and vividness of roles they have to accomplish, whereas an unmarried person, though wading through a river of inexplicable adversities and hurdles, equips oneself to liberate the ripe soul from the tentacles of the earthly bondage (1.Cor.7: 16-39). Jesus also nods that the life of a eunuch for the sake of the Kingdom of Heaven, in contrast, is more affable than the life of married people. But there are married persons without having the wedding gowns, too. For many are called, but few are chosen. Heaven is opened for both married and unmarried people, but both are expected to evolve to the stage of children (Mt.19.14-15) for the attainment of Heavenly manhood (Eph.4: 12-15;Mt.5: 45) like the angels in Heaven (Mt.22: 30) .It is well for a man not to touch a woman (1.Cor.7: 1,7;Rev.14: 4).” So in whatever manner (whether married or unmarried) each was called, there let him remain with God”.

It is said that marriage takes place in Heaven, though there is no marriage or married life there. The magnetic attraction between the masses of flesh cannot be called marriage. The married person is in the mission of replenishing the Heavenly earth (Jn.14: 2), while the celibate is striving hard to evolve himself as a saintly eunuch. Bringing up ideal children and spouse for God is a unique work of God (Eph.5: 22-6:4; 1.Tim.2: 8-15; Col.3: 18-25). As the Bridegroom has only one Bride, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband (1.Cor.7: 2). Grooming the bride, who includes the total support of bringing up their children, is the sole duty of the groom. Adam neglected the duty as a caretaker, ending up in the seduction of Eve by Satan while he was away from her (1.Cor.7: 5).

For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from unchastity; that each one of you know how to take a wife himself in holiness and honor not in the passion of lust like heathen who do not know God...for God has not called us for uncleanness, but in holiness...(1.Thess.4: 3-8). In short, one should be a celibate till marriage. Since the lust of the eye or the lust of the body is a sin, no dating or flirting before the wedding is allowed in the strict sense. For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put death the deeds of the body you will live (Rom.8: 13, 6-9;Mt.16: 25)... Make no provisions for the flesh, to gratify its desires (Rom.13; 14). The undercurrent of St.Paul’s epistles thrust on this ever-present battle between good and bad, body and soul. Therefore, either live as a eunuch for the whole life or till at least one’s marriage. Those who decide to marry should emulate the life of the 12 Patriarchs’ parents and grand parents.

1.God’s blessings for the selection of a life partner
The selection of Isaac’s wife “came from the Lord”(Gen.24: 50), so also of finding Jacob’s life partners was by the promptings of the Heavenly powers (Gen.28.13-15). In accordance with Abraham’s prayers God’s angels went before the emissaries for all decision-making purposes. God’s angels appeared to Jacob in a dream prior to sending His benedictions while on his way for the selection of a spouse (Gen. 28:10-17).

2.Indispensability of parents’ blessings
By the promptings of God’s angels and Abraham’s prayers the servant found out a girl for Isaac (Gen.24: 37;Exo.20: 12). His parents blessed Jacob in accepting his spouse set apart by God (28:1-8)

3.Pledge of Dedication
Jacob made a vow that he would dedicate his whole life in the service of God provided he became successful in his mission of choosing a wife and return to his household with greater blessings of reconciling with his brother (28:20-22). Not only that his future life would be exclusively spent for the worship of God, but also giving a tenth of all his earnings to God. As a visible form of the wedding vow, precious ornaments were given to the bride (Gen.24: 22,47-48,55). Parents’ prayers during this period are also highly essential (24:63).

Virginity before the marriage is a deciding factor for the future blessings and success in life (Gen.24: 16). Rebecca was a virgin till marriage. Jacob didn’t have any sexual flirtations even during the betrothal period while he was serving for Rachel for seven years (29:20-30).

Love and fidelity should rule over everything what they touch and breath. The vow that undertook before the wedding should start germinate soon after the marriage. It takes a long time to grasp the wishful intentions, aspirations and genetical make-up of the spouse. Even if there are some misconceptions between the couple due to inexperience, everything evaporates by conception and the children bridges a life long bond that dictates their entire life for the generations to come. Two souls in one body build and cement the value system in their children who in turn carry the torch bequeathed from their parents (1.Pet.3: 1-12;Eze.16: 44-45). People from different strata of society always bless the arranged marriages; care, affection and best wishes from all of them are the companions of the new couple, where as a love marriage creates conflicts and acrimony among the dear and near ones by showering ill winds or rivalry among different fiancés or fiancées. Grabbing anyone away from their routine roles in life on the basis of the animal magnetism of the flesh is an inimical crime done against parents or brothers, sisters, wife, husband, children, religion or society in general. One fickle moment of King David’s voluptuous life made him a criminal of serious double crimes, which destroyed all his credibility as a man of God and as a man of righteousness. The curses that he bequeathed to his offspring, religion and country worked as a torpedo in gulping the roadmap of Israelites’ sacred history by the later Babylonian rulers. The ripples of what we do or think will have multiples of unending reactions and consequences. Once the equilibrium is perturbed, everything goes beyond our grasp and comprehension. Violent beginnings will have violent ends.

LOVE MARRIAGE AND DE-FACTO RELATIONSHIPS: Desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin; and sin when it is full-grown brings forth death (Jas.1: 15). The devil has a right to destroy man because he is intricately wrought in the depths of the earth (Ps.139: 15), the demonic region, in accordance with the bond that stood against him (Col.2: 14). God is like an ever-burning furnace, emitting fire and light in all directions. Man formed in the image and likeness of the Creator is also a furnace in its miniature formula; unless he sheds translucent light around him by overpowering the impurities of body within which he is enclosed, he will be consumed by the fire of his own demeanors and preposterousness. Despite a man is allowed to go into heaven, he will be blinded for his self -dismissal if there is no compatible light in him. The sex impulse is a rekindling fire of the flesh; if not bridled skillfully, the conflagration kindled can consume everything around. One who looks at a woman lustfully commits adultery in his heart (Mt.5: 28). The lust of the flesh, the pride of life and the devil are co-travelers who contrive schemes with exhausting passions. The arranged marriage may be portrayed as having no vista of knowing each other, penetrating into the desires, strivings and sexual compatibility. This is where the aid of the experienced relatives is called for. Man’s mental, as well as physical maturity, clings on to a cyclic rhythm of ripeness. Spoon-feeding is necessary for a baby; rigorous training is unavoidable for cycling, motoring, swimming, and the like. Such training in harnessing one’s instincts is needed by the onset of puberty and adolescence. Freedom or liberty cannot buy physical and metaphysical training and maturity. If one is not taught in the school of sufferings for his spiritual evolution, what difference is there between a man and a dog? Even the dog is restricted with a set season to mate. Man is the only animal, which enjoys the conjugal pleasure while his partner is pregnant. The dove will not roost with another bird once its partner is dead. Never call a man a dog because it is an insult to a dog.

The old mental gymnasts have prescribed certain guidelines for harnessing the wild passions of man. A child up to the age of five should be treated as a prince, patting, cajoling and cuddling by tossing it at the lap of the parents. Serve all what is good for it. Treat it as a servant from 5 to 17, inculcating in him the creative passions of fear and love at the expense of other consuming lusts of life. He shouldn’t become a prey of superficial love and compassion. By the time he is over 17 his slavery is budded into a lifelong friendship with his elders. “Life starts at 40”. Life that starts at 40 should not be narrowed down to the venue of private life only but also is applicable to every vista of life as the cyclic equilibrium of emotional spiritual and philosophical maturity comes to its fruition since then. Plato’s philosopher king also was allowed to take the reins after the age of 40 just when he finished undergoing through a period of hard and rigorous training by sitting at the feet of the masters. Life is a real battlefield; veteran gurus and pundits should guide every step forward. It is a blessing if every individual till the age of 40 at least can march through the marshy land of life under the shades of their parents and other elders. Edward heath, the former Prime minister of England once said that even at the evening age of his life 70% of the decisions taken as the head of the nation was wrong. We are given with a lifetime of about 80 years to understand the nothingness and futilities of this transitory life. “Petty done and undone vast”. Given freedom to an adolescent will make him ripe before he becomes mature, making him as good for nothing. Anything excess is bad. Sexual excesses impede the intellectual faculty, normal metabolic functions and histrionic talents leading to aversions, and apathy to the inner side of life, with particular reference to spiritual and esoteric side of life. Listen to the prescriptions of the yogic therapy: twice a day, twice a month and twice a year. Sexual exercise is only one of the systems of the capricious body; it cannot cope with more than two sexual unions a month without affecting the normal functions of the other systems in the strict sense. Emptying the bowl twice daily is good for the body. Shaving only twice a year is advisable. Giving freedom to the lion, the king of the forest, will annihilate all other animals of the land. Sexual impulse, the mother of all other passions, will wipe out the victim and all the inhabitants of the world, and the planet altogether. Aids is only a tip of the iceberg. Laxity in sex morals has dynamited the foundations and texture of family and social life. For those who have no religious fervor sex becomes their religion, and pornography their bible. De-facto and extra marital relationships have manufactured only bastards who become criminals and perverts of all types consuming taxpayers’ money. The begetter and the begotten ones become eventual social outcasts. Once when the divine laws are perverted, we don’t have any logic as to how the invisible powers will work, as God is the author of everything. The modern animal life has tampered, digressed and trespassed all the biological and cosmic horizons. As the abomination of desolation has corroded and eroded the sanctity of our inner and physical universes, a cosmic bang of this planet is not too far into the future. The defacto union is abhorrent and despicable among the two-footed animals; of course they can argue that man is a four-footed animal while he tastes the fruits of darkness.

The premarital compatibility tests or the mutual knowledge in great details don’t prove that the couple is ever united for life. Man’s mind, like a drunken monkey caught up with a swarm of stinging bees, fluctuates and oscillates at every moment. The divorce rate is alarmingly abhorrent as days pass on and such children are prone to any form of vicious crimes and felony. Prove otherwise that dating and defacto unions are better than the arranged marriages, a thing of the past as denigrated in the developed and developing countries, by positive and convincing results. There might arise some unavoidable cases of divorce in arranged marriages, but the divorce rates and its painful and detrimental fallout in defacto households and love marriages outnumber many, many times, making the short life span a synonym of inferno on earth for themselves and their kiths and kins and society at large. The final stage of harvesting all our infectious passions and fashions start in the nursing homes, from where we exit into an all-pervading plane of unknown darkness. The lustful and irreligious life only can accelerate suicides and mercy killings. And the world passes away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides for ever (1.Jn.2: 17).

Freedom of doing anything at any time is welcomed, provided the quality of life is enhanced from the mundane to excellence. As man trains the giant and ferocious elephant, man is to be put under harness by the governing laws of the Creator. Freedom is only an abstract concept while the cravings for basic, concrete necessities are the naked facts of life. Instead of proving that man is the highest creature in the scale of creation, reverting back the pendulum to the downgrade of Homo sapiens, the so-called evolution of the species, is highly abominable and reprehensible. The path of redemption commences only at the junction of the thirst for God and the fainting of the flesh in a dry and weary land (Ps.63: 1). Marriage takes place in Heaven, the second heaven the church, if not, the lustful life may crash-land untimely into an alien territory of abysmal darkness.

At the time when the spirit of darkness of the Iron Age (Dan.2: 40-45) gulps the helpless victims of the circumstance, instead of condemning the ignorant ones and the weaklings, let us pray for the light of the New Age to dawn upon mankind.

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Long time ago, before Christ, there was a Rabbi in ancient Judia by the name Solomon who was very famous for his wisdom, honesty and generosity. Every day of Sabbath many youngsters, both man and woman of Judia, after worshipping Yahweh, gathered in the shade of the trees of Synagogue, to hear and discuss with Solomon whose wisdom they appraised as comparable to that of Wise King Solomon. Rabbi Solomon was so scholastic to answer any questions of the Youngsters with reference to the Holy Scriptures. Yohanes, Martha, Ezekiel, Esther, and Ahaz were some of the active participants of the group discussions with Rabbi. Esther, an young girl, of the group recorded all the sweet discussions with Rabbi day to day As:



Today our discussion commenced with an interesting question from Ezekiel.

Ezekiel: Rabbi, I want to ask you a question. About a year ago I asked the same question to another Rabbi I happened to meet, and my question made him very angry. "You must be a child of the devil to ask that question," he retorted. I hope you will not get angry at me for asking this question. Here it is: Why do we live?

With a smile on his face the Rabbi said: Well, I am happy that you have asked me such an important question. Why do we live is the most basic question about human existence. Everybody needs to know its answer though nobody knows the exact answer. People have asked this question since the day they began to think and talk because it is impossible to live without some sort of answer to this question. The answers they have managed to find are not necessarily the same in various cultures and traditions.

The answers found by our ancestors have come down to the present generation in the form of songs, stories and proverbs. We are lucky enough to have them in written form--the Holy Scriptures. It witnesses how our ancestors faced the challenge of existence, and how they answered the basic questions related to it. Their answer to the question "Why do we live" can be found in the Hymn of Creation in the first chapter of Genesis, the first book of our Holy Scriptures.

Ezekiel: In the Hymn of Creation we read how God created the world in six days, and rested on the seventh day. How does it answer the question why we live?

Rabbi: Well, let us see if we can find the answer there. Our primary means of livelihood is farming. We work on our farms six days a week, and take rest in the weekend. Our ancestors who wrote this creation story were also farmers. Therefore, it was easy for them to think of the world as a large farm, and of God as its farmer. Plants, animals, birds and human beings belong to this large farm. Like a typical Hebrew farmer, God works on his farm for six days and rests on the seventh day. When God the farmer arrives, the earth is void and without form. He gives order and form, and converts it into a beautiful farm.

There is no doubt that a farm exists for its farmer; hence, the earth with everything in it belongs to God, its owner. Being a part of the world, human beings belong to God. Thus according to our ancestors, we exist for God.

Ezekiel: I understand it. But, why does God want us to exist?

Rabbi: I wish I knew the answer. That is something only God knows. Nobody except God knows why the world exists. Hence, we have to be satisfied with the knowledge that we live for some purpose that only our creator knows. Anyway, there is no doubt that God wants the world to exist, and it has to be a healthy existence. God is not satisfied with a chaotic and disorderly world; what God wants is an orderly and beautiful world. In the creation story, we repeatedly read that God was very happy to see his beautiful creation.

Ezekiel: So what you suggest is that we need to live an orderly and beautiful life though we don't know its purpose. How can a sensible person do something without knowing the purpose of doing it?

Rabbi: Well, you have stated bluntly the very basic problem of our existence. Our ancestors solved this problem of senselessness by believing that someone who lives up there knows why we exist though we don't.

Ezekiel: Do you imply that the existence of God is just a matter of belief?

Rabbi: Nobody can prove whether God exists or not because God is not a part of the world. However, we believe that God exists. That belief depends on another belief--the belief that our existence has purpose and meaning. These two beliefs, that God exists and that our life has purpose, go together; one can't exist without the other. Therefore, that we exist is sufficient proof for us to believe that God exists.

Ezekiel: I understand what you mean. Though I don't know why I live, I continue to live because I believe that someone up there knows the reason. So my problem is not the lack of purpose, but the lack of knowledge of it. In this matter we need to trust God just as a child trusts his/her parents.

Rabbi: You have used the best comparison. We are as ignorant as children regarding the purpose of our existence. The best possible solution I can think of is to believe that though we are ignorant of it, our creator is not.

It was a long but interesting discussion. We all thanked the Rabbi for it.

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