Friday, August 3, 2012
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Dr. John Lerma is a topic of ongoing interest. I’ve done 3 blogs concerning him and his two books, Into the Light and Learning from the Light. In reviewing the second book, I only had time to deal with the first half of it, stopping with Lerma’s anecdote about the ‘true’ Roswell story.
In that story (Chapter 5) a dying military man named Col. Marshall Bradfield deliberately transferred to the hospice in Houston where Lerma worked. Since he was 92 and dying, he wanted to share with Lerma the real story of what crashed at Roswell, NM in 1947. He allegedly knew the real story is because he was visiting with his parents in Roswell when the event occurred. Mac Brazel, on whose ranch the UFO crashed, came first to the Bradfield residence to lead none other than Marsh to the site. The military arrived soon after they did, but Marsh had time to put two pieces of debris together and see a German iron cross.
When he got home again, he called his commander at Wright-Patterson AFB. He learned that the US knew about the crash, that a campaign of disinformation was being planned (to convince the American people that it was a UFO), and that German scientists had been recruited after the war who were developing a special flying vehicle under Hitler. They were continuing that research here in the USA.
That story as told in Learning is an unmitigated pile of horse feathers. (See my post called “Learning from Learning from the Light.) He either found the story on the internet, or he was the victim of an agent of disinformation, or he made the whole thing up.
The next story in Lerma’s book is just as ridiculous. A 102-year-old Jewish woman named Grace Livingston arrived in hospice. To help assuage her pain from cancer, angels took her in OBE state all around the world to see the wonders of the planet. I actually have no problem with that.
She also began to see visions of Mary Magdalene, who appeared to her because Grace had known Rosa Parks and had fought for women’s rights and civil rights throughout her lifetime. Mary told Grace that there had been a conspiracy against women beginning about a hundred years after the death of Christ. Her Gospel was rejected by the Council of Nicea around 320, and Pope Gregory suppressed women even more.
It is a fact that even in the first century it was a scandal in the eyes of many men that women were preaching and praying in public, working beside the men, and exercising prophetic authority. In their worldview, women were the weaker sex and were a constant temptation to noble men, both with their physical beauty and with their ability to lure men into illicit religious practices. The church was struggling to exist in a hostile world and couldn’t afford any kind of scandal. Decade by decade the women were restricted. They had to cover their heads. They were discouraged from praying and prophesying. They were eventually forbidden to teach or lead men, so ordination was also withheld.
However, if the Gnostic Gospel of Mary, found in The Nag Hammadi Library in English, HarperSanFrancisco, 1990, was rejected by the Council, it wasn’t because of any anti-feminist conspiracy. It’s really two documents, one in which Jesus is still alive, and another in which he had died. In the first segment, Jesus warns against being led a stray and against adding rules and laws to what he taught them.
In the second part, Peter asks Mary, who was loved by the Lord more than other women, to tell the disciples whatever she might know that they don’t. She answers, “What is hidden from you, I will proclaim to you.” Doesn’t that sound wise and wonderful, like a true teacher? So here is the big, secret revelation. In typical Gnostic fashion, a soul is making its way to its destination in the afterlife. Decide for yourself if the Church’s rejection of it was legit.
I said to him, ‘Lord, now does he who sees the vision see it (through) the soul
through the spirit?’ The Savior
answered and said, ‘He does not see through the soul nor the spirit, but the
mind which [is] between the two -- that is [what] sees the vision and it is [ .
. . ] 4 pages missing.
And desire that, ‘I did not see you descending, but now I see you ascending. Why do you lie, since you belong to me?’ The soul answered and said, ‘I saw you. You did not see me nor recognize me. I served you as a garment, and you did not know me.’ When it had said this, it went away rejoicing greatly.
Again it came to the third power, which is called ignorance. [It (the power)] questioned the soul saying, ‘Where are you going/ In wickedness are you bound. But you are bound; do not judge!’ And the soul said, ‘why do you judge me although I have not judged? I was bound though I have not bound. I was not recognized. But I have recognized that the All is being dissolved, both the earthly (things) and the heavenly.’
When the soul had overcome the third power, it went upwards and saw the fourth power, (which) took seven forms. The first form is darkness, the second desire, the third ignorance, the fourth is the excitement of death, the fifth is the kingdom of the flesh, the sixth is the foolish wisdom of flesh, the seventh is the wrathful wisdom. These are the seven [powers] of wrath. They ask the soul, ‘Whence do you come, slayer of men, or where are you going, conqueror of space?’ The soul answered and said, ‘What binds me has been slain, and what surrounds me has been overcome, and my desire has been ended, and ignorance has died. In a [world] I was released from a world [and] in a type from a heavenly type, and (from) the fetter of oblivion which is transient. From this time on will I attain to the rest of the time, of the season, of the aeon, in silence.’
Peter and Andrew are upset that the above lesson is so strange and that the Lord would tell it to a woman and not inform them. Mary cries and assures them she would not lie about it. Levi jumps in and says that if the Lord loved her more than all of them, they should get over it and get on with preaching the gospel, which they set about to do.
Mary Magdalene did not write this gospel and the Councils were absolutely correct to reject it. Most Gnostic literature is babble similar to the above. And don’t think for a moment that it empowered women. Gnostic tracts were written by first century fuddy duddy men with the same worldview as the Apostle Paul. The thing about Paul is that when he wrote, you could tell what he was saying.
And when Jesus spoke, you knew exactly what the message was. If he used a parable, he explained it. The Sermon on the Mount sweeps away religious posturing and gets to the nitty gritty of where God wants our hearts to be. In Mark 7 he dismisses the effectiveness of purity rituals and food laws. In John 8 he reveals his true self to a Gentile female. He never babbles, he never misses the mark or says something so foolish that we have to be embarrassed about it today.
Furthermore, the ‘Mary’ that allegedly appeared to Grace revealed other aspects of her ‘gospel.’ 1) Christ is not coming back in the clouds as the Bible says, but manifests in every heart as we achieve enlightenment. That is the meaning of the Second Coming. 2) Learn who you are. Joining the lower ego, or sinful self, with the higher self makes us whole. That is what Jesus meant by ‘When two or three are gathered together in my name, I will be in their midst.” (Galatians 1:8). [This is a Lerma theme, repeated at least 3 times in the two books, and it is a complete misinterpretation of the passage. So when the same thought is expressed through a dying person who is quoting an angel, as in the next story, one really has to wonder what is going on.] 3) The Enoch in Buddhist texts was really Jesus. 4) The death of Jesus “symbolized the death of the world and the resurrection symbolized our new body.” Christ’s teaching on ‘enlightenment’ was more important than eternal life of bliss. 5) Peter represented “the necessary counterpart (to enlightenment), which was motivated by pride, guilt, and fear. After all, Peter denied Jesus three times, thus representing most human beings as well as the Catholic Church.” 6) God preaches within the heart. Those who follow these inner feelings will be persecuted by evil coming from within the Church. This was the true, suppressed message of Fatima.
This is such all nonsense I don’t know where to begin. Does it make sense that the real Mary Magdalene would come to an old woman and diss the Apostle Peter, the Catholic Church, the whole church at large, the meaning of the crucifixion, and the Second Coming? Would she write a confusing ‘gospel’ and promote a message directly opposed to the whole lesson of the Garden of Eden?
This Mary was a kissin’ cousin of the ‘Virgin Mary’ that helped send the Gulf Breeze Six on their amazing journey to Nowhere.
There is a Christ the Son of God in Lerma’s second book. In the story of Syriana, a dying Lebanese girl, there is no doubt Who He claims to Be. “Jesus! He said he is Jesus Christ, who died for our sins. He was crucified and died for us, Dr. Lerma. Dr. Lerma, when he was washing my feet ever so gently, … I felt his wounds. … He is standing in front of us all now. He is all white, and the angels and my family and other prophets are all singing to him. Oh my, he is God! The one God! I am so sorry God! I am so sorry!”