Saturday, January 4, 2020

Were the teachings of Herbert Armstrong "beautiful truth" as Gerald Flurry claims?

I was busy earlier in December with year-end holiday jobs and the Rose Parade when Gerald Flurry came out with an "open letter" to the Churches of God.  It waxes with a deep longing for the "good old days" of Armstrongism, a myth that some in the COG believe was actually a good thing, and yet today, have never been able to achieve any of those things they look longingly back upon.
Herbert W. Armstrong was part of something great. That Church was a work of miracles.
Do you remember that glorious history? Too many of God’s people don’t. God challenges us to always keep the big picture. 
Over Mr. Armstrong’s 55 years in Jesus Christ’s ministry, the work blossomed. It started as nothing and grew into a huge, Spirit-led work that spread God’s beautiful truth throughout the world.
What "beautiful truth" did the church spread around the world? What impact did "a strong hand from someplace" ever accomplish in the Philippines or elsewhere? How can "beautiful truth" end up being a law enforcement hierarchy that made Church of God member's lives miserable? How can "beautiful truth" lead so many COG members into suicide and even murder? How can "beautiful truth" lead over 400 some self-appointed lying despots to set themselves up as the REAL "one true church?" Even worse, how can a church that was filled with so much "beautiful truth" deny and continue to deny the One whom they claim to follow?

Oh, but what about the "beautiful truth" of "give vs get?" Church member's bank accounts were bled dry by Herbert Armstrong and others demanding tithes and offerings be sent in for one emergency after another.  Many times when Herbert Armstrong sent out those letters he was buying art, gold, and silver to furnish his home and office with. My family mortgaged a paid-off home to fund Herbert in one of his money demands.  How is that a 'beautiful truth?"

How can we forget the Ambassador International Cultural Foundation as "beautiful truth?" AICF ended up being an enormous money drain on the church.  When it could have been using the money for good, it was spending untold millions on concerts, dinners, and receptions in order to entertain the elite of Los Angeles and around the world.  Thankfully, Tkach Sr. closed it all down, while today we have Flurry and Pack building or planning to build their own mini-me auditoriums to further drain followers pocketbooks.
Do you remember that history? God put our tithes and offerings to magnificent use, and we were happy to be a part of such a noble cause.
The Ambassador International Cultural Foundation, which Mr. Armstrong founded in 1975, freely sponsored humanitarian projects including archaeological digs, schools and anthropological excursions. Its activities stretched from Bombay to Brussels; the Philippines to the Netherlands; Tokyo to Cairo. We hosted projects in Jerusalem, Jordan, London, Nepal and Okinawa. Why? Because Mr. Armstrong wanted to preach the gospel “for a witness unto all nations” (Matthew 24:14).
Using the international contacts Mr. Armstrong established through the cultural foundation, God opened doors for him to meet high-ranking officials around the world. Mr. Armstrong was invited to speak publicly on many occasions, and he took those opportunities to preach the gospel—to tell people about God’s master plan and about their incredible human potential. These events opened the way for personal appearance campaigns, where he spoke to hundreds of thousands of leading people in various countries.
How was a "beautiful truth" proclaimed when the church dumped millions of dollars into rebuilding the Globe Theater in London, the Wanamaker Organ in Philadelphia, and the Reagan Library in California? How did establishing Everest House Publishing create a "beautiful truth" that the world needed? With books and a magazine on sex, witchcraft, and glowing books on a mass murderer that committed genocide in the Congo, just how was this "beautiful truth?" How was dumping money into funding a Hollywood movie a "beautiful truth?"
Under Mr. Armstrong, the Church of God practiced the way of give—of godly character, generosity, cultural enrichment, true education—of beautifying the environment and caring for fellowman. Mr. Armstrong never deviated from his God-given commission, and the work prospered! His work acknowledged God’s desire to have all men saved and brought to the knowledge of His truth (1 Timothy 2:3-6). It was an inspiring display of God’s love for all mankind.
Just who was "saved" by Herbert Armstrong's message" when the law replaced Jesus as the ultimate authority, just how was that "beautiful truth?"

What about today in Church of Godland?  Who has that "beautiful truth" to share?
Now, did Mr. Armstrong do all that? Certainly he worked hard to implement God’s law and government and to walk by faith. But was the work so powerful and effective simply because of Mr. Armstrong’s intellect or advertising expertise? Did Mr. Armstrong swing open all those mighty doors?
No—the great God did that!
It doesn’t take great spiritual discernment to recognize that God was behind that work—God was blessing that work—God was empowering and multiplying that work—as Mr. Armstrong submitted to Him.
No man could have ever built such a marvelous and wondrous work in this satanic world. It was built and sustained by the miracles of the living God!
No Church of God leader today has any "marvelous and wondrous work" that is delivering a "beautiful truth."  Almost all are impotent self -appointed men who dreamed up their positions as god's anointed.  God certainly was never part of the picture. That is the main reason all of the splinter groups are such epic failures today. Dave Pack's campus will never be finished so the feet of Jesus can walk the grounds with Dave as they plan Jesus' third coming.  Gerald Flurry's campus is still nothing more than a boil on the Oklahoma landscape, despite the Holy Prayer Rock, and Lil Stevie's presence.
Right at the heart of Mr. Armstrong’s teaching was his instruction about the God-plane institution of family (Malachi 4:5-6). He taught us how to build beautiful marriages and to rear happy children. We educated our children with Youth Educational Services lessons; we provided our teens rich experiences through the Youth Opportunities United program—with its sporting events, talent shows and summer camps.
A trail of broken marriages, divorces, suicides, broken family relationships, suicidal children and members, is NOT a legacy of Armstrongism that needs to be celebrated.  Herbert Armstrong was not even able to keep his own family in the church, with most of them despising him for what he had done to the family. Youth Opportunities United gave pedophiles in the church fertile ground for new meat. Flurry's own cult has ripped families asunder with his perverse "no contact" law.

How can the son of an evangelist who was mistreated by fellow Imperial students and shunned by his own father be "beautiful truth" when he took a gun and shot himself in the head in his front yard?

How can the documented cases of ministers who were pedophiles be "beautiful truth" as they broke a sacred trust and sexually assaulted little boys and girls?  How can it be "beautiful truth" when parents are sent for jail for beating their children with 2x4's?
Do you remember what life was like in the Church under Mr. Armstrong? If you were applying God’s family education, then you have personally experienced the blessings that come as a result! Do you remember that?
Yes Gerald, we sure as hell do!

Never fear though, God was just testing you to see if you would stay in the church and especially in Gerald's "beautiful truth." It really did not matter that you were sexually abused or assaulted, or that you lived on the verge of poverty. Even when Terry Ratzman killed you in church services, it was all a test to see how you would react.
Naturally, the Church wasn’t perfect; there were problems. Some members and even ministers did not implement God’s loving family government the right way. But the problem went beyond simple neglect. Revelation 3:9 tells us that “the synagogue of Satan” was actually at work within the Church of the Philadelphia era—under Mr. Armstrong!
The Bible is filled with prophecies that show how God knew this crisis would happen—and actually allowed it in order to test our loyalty to Him. The Bible also shows that He is going to bring every abuse to judgment. God will not be mocked! I strongly encourage you to request a free copy of my book Malachi’s Message for a very thorough scriptural study of God’s perspective on what happened to His Church.
If there is a "synagogue of Satan", it is surely being run by Flurry, Pack, Malm, Thiel, Weston, Weinland, Kubik and many other COG leaders today.  Never has the church seen so many despicable men in its midst than it has today in 2020.

Today in 2020, the Church of God has at least five Elijah's in its midst.  Every single one is a self-appointed fool who was NOT set apart by God to do any kind of work. We have Flurry, Malm, Pack, Thiel, and Weinland, all claiming they are Elijah. All five of them are certified lairs and abusers of the brethren. God certainly had no part in their appointment to their apostate ministries and certainly is not blessing their ministries, despite how much they lie that "it" is.

Just what is the single greatest truth that the church has today in its midst?
And—most importantly—God has continued to bless us, as He did Mr. Armstrong, with new revelation. The living God did not stop speaking to His people when Mr. Armstrong died. He has continued to give us “present truth” (2 Peter 1:12) that builds upon the foundation of the truth He restored through Mr. Armstrong. The pcg produces over 100 books and booklets, the large majority of which contain new biblical understanding from the great God.
That is the single greatest proof that the God who inspired Mr. Armstrong is behind our work.
Is god speaking to Flurry? Is god speaking to Thiel?  Is god speaking to Weinland? Is god speaking to Pack? Is god speaking to Weston?  Is god speaking to Kubik?  Is god speaking to Malm? They all claim "it" is. What "beautiful truth" have you ever seen these men utter?

If you are a follower of Christ, then that is the only beautiful truth you will ever need.  None of the buffoonery of today's pack of Armstrongite leaders will ever be beautiful.

Friday, January 3, 2020

"...little is left of perhaps $1 billion of believers’ money that was squandered over the years"

• America’s all-time champion evangelist was Garner Ted Armstrong, whose national broadcasts drew $75 million a year to the Worldwide Church of God run by Garner and his father, Herbert W. Armstrong. (That’s double the amount collected by Billy Graham.) Money poured in from followers, many of whom met in secret groups and donated 30 percent of their incomes. Garner lived like a maharaja in a California mansion with his own private jet, elegant sports cars — and, allegedly, female believers in bed. Trouble hit in 1976 when some members published a protest. They accused Garner of sex and Herbert of self-enrichment. Chess champion Bobby Fischer said the elder Armstrong had used “mind control” to take nearly $100,000 from him. In 1978 the father fired the son, who started a new television religion.
In 1979 the California attorney general filed a receivership suit accusing Herbert and treasurer Stanley Rader of “pilfering” at least $1 million a year for themselves. Gold bullion owned by the sect was reported missing. Financial records indicated that Herbert and Rader each got salaries of $200,000 plus fabulous expense accounts. Garner accused Rader of taking $700,000 from the church in one year. Garner’s sister said Rader had three homes, a horse stable, a Maserati, a Mercedes and a limousine. On June 2 the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the attorney general’s right to investigate the church. Meanwhile, little is left of perhaps $1 billion of believers’ money that was squandered over the years.
From The God Biz, Part 1
And today, in 2020, "men" like Bob Thiel, Gerald Flurry, Dave Pack, Ron Weinland, and many other COG leaders continue to squander money in order to fund their lifestyles.  It's not about any gospel message but the gathering in of money.  How can they preach a gospel message when they all deny the one about who the gospel is about?

Gerald Flurry's Mental Illness Causes Him To Compare Joe Tkach Sr With The 1st Antiochus

If you think the craziness out of Edmond Oklahoma from the Flurry family cult compound can't get any crazier, then think again.

Gerald Flurry has spent over two decades dreaming up every imaginable scenario to fit his perverted occupation with prophecy.  So far, Flurry, like every other COG leader has a zero track record in predictions.  Just like Bob Thiel, Flurry lies as if his god is inspiring him to say the things he does. God is NOT and WILL NOT speak through any of these malignant men who are tumors in the church.

The First End-Time Antiochus
Let’s see how the role of Antiochus is fulfilled in this end time. “And it waxed great, even to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and of the stars to the ground, and stamped upon them. Yea, he magnified himself even to the prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of his sanctuary was cast down. And an host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practised, and prospered” (Daniel 8:10-12). These “stars” are the angels who look after God’s obedient people. An evil power rejected the protection of these angels and “stamped upon” the rebellious people “by reason of transgression”—because they broke God’s law.
“Host” can refer to an army of angels, demons or men. In my booklet Daniel—Unsealed at Last, I write: “God has an army of angels and saints. Satan has an army of demons and men—in this case sinning saints.”
This part of Daniel 8 reveals the first Antiochus: a wicked man inside God’s own Church. He “cast down the truth to the ground.” It’s impossible to destroy God’s truth if you never possessed it in the first place. This man rejected every doctrine restored to the Church by the late Herbert W. Armstrong. Bequeathed with tremendous spiritual riches to preserve, he decided instead to ruin the legacy of Mr. Armstrong. (Request my book Malachi’s Message to God’s Church Today and my son’s book, Raising the Ruins, to expose the heinous attack on God’s Church within the past several decades. All of our literature is free.)
God’s Church is spiritual Israel. God’s plan is all about what He is doing through Israel, both physically and spiritually. One day, the whole world will become part of spiritual Israel through obedience. The first end-time Antiochus fights against God Himself! He’s trying to blot out the name of spiritual Israel.
The Second End-Time Antiochus
Daniel 8 also reveals the second end-time Antiochus: “And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up” (verse 23). Just as with the Antiochus inside God’s Church, this Antiochus thrives because “the transgressors are come to the full”—everybody is sinning! These men are a curse upon the sinning people!
This second end-time Antiochus will lead the seventh and final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire. “And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people” (verse 24). The sixth head of the Holy Roman Empire was Adolf Hitler. Led by Germany once again, the seventh resurrection of this empire will destroy mightily.
“And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand” (verse 25). This Antiochus destroys through peace. He is crafty, appearing harmless while plotting violence. He is a traitor. Satan, himself a liar (John 8:44) and often disguised as an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14), empowers this man.
The second end-time Antiochus seeks to blot out the name of physical Israel—primarily America, Britain and the Jewish state. The good news is “he shall be broken without hand”! Christ Himself will stop this Antiochus and the Holy Roman Empire from ever again inflicting damage on the world!
The preoccupation with these certified liars in the Church of God over their perverse obsession with seeing the US and British commonwealth nations destroyed is appalling. As they scream and shout, with fists pounding their desks, like Herbert Armstrong, these little guys end up looking like fools.

Can any of them ever be trusted to tell the truth?

Then like all the other perverted COG leaders, he lets us know just who the savior of the church is.  It certainly is not Jesus, but Gerald himself.

God’s man has the honor of delivering God’s warning to the end-time Jeroboam: “Now therefore hear thou the word of the Lord: Thou sayest, Prophesy not against Israel, and drop not thy word against the house of Isaac. Therefore thus saith the Lord; Thy wife shall be an harlot in the city, and thy sons and thy daughters shall fall by the sword, and thy land shall be divided by line; and thou shalt die in a polluted land: and Israel shall surely go into captivity forth of his land” (verses 16-17).

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

The Shallow and Petty Silliness of COG Leaders

As Dennis mentioned in an earlier post, I was busy with Rose Parade and Rose Bowl activities over the last couple of weeks.  Two things that the bottom feeders of various COG groups click their angry teeth at.  Now that most of them are no longer in Pasadena and no longer able to make money off of the parade, as the church did for 8 decades, they now sit there and condemn it all. From hating football like Bob Thiel to those who struggle to pull pagan references to New Years out of their asses.

I get to see the lives changed by being part of the parade by the band members, the amazing creativity by float builders and the kids that decorate the floats, to the parents of football team members who are honored at special events for raising such outstanding young men.

And then you read the absolute idiocy of Bob Theil and his quarterly and yearly football hissy-fits you quickly realized how trite and insignificant these splinter group leaders are.  They are like the bottom feeders of society as they find everything imaginable wrong around them as they become obsessed with the evil they seek to highlight in such orgasmic ecstasy. In their deluded quest to find evil in everything around them, they have ultimately let that evil fill their hearts with sheer idiocy. These men are incapable of seeing the beauty and the amazing lives of people who surround them. Their eyes are so blinded by their narcissism that they can no longer look beyond their prayer rocks, manicured gardens, sad little storefronts, or can't stop bragging endlessly about dreams and double blessings.

As those who have left Armstrongism, especially those family members of splinter cult leaders, all know how free and wonderful life is outside Armstrongism.

Enjoy life in 2020.  Enjoy the beauty of those around you and in the world.  It is amazing!


Restored Church of God's Worst Nightmare: "For certain men have crept in among you unnoticed...."

...and yes that title is a bit out of context but:

"Behold the Day Will Come...."

Back in the day, I had an Uncle who lived in Miami and somehow came across the Worldwide Church of God without any encouragement from me. I had no idea he was going to church.  My Uncle was not a man to be toyed with. If he wanted to know something, he really wanted to know.  I believe he actually started to attend church but for some reason, unknowable to me to this day, he was asked not to attend anymore.  "Oh really? Watch this" would have been my Uncle's inner response.  He evidently put on a false beard and endeavored to change his look and went to church again.  Evidently he did not do a very good job as half way through the service a Deacon called  him of the row he was in and he was escorted out of the service.  He never went back but loved telling the tale.

When in Portland, I had thought to invite the RCG minister over for a chat. Pretty sure he'd not know me but then with my luck...   I did invite two JW's in one time for a chat, not revealing my background. When they sat down, they just sat there saying nothing until I had to ask "What would you like to talk about?"  The said that they did not because "We've never gotten this far before".

Painful as it is to me and done in the innocence and sincerity of my youth, I ended up pastoring in a cult. That was not my intention. That was not my inclination of personality. That was not what I thought I was aligning myself with. I thought I had found "the truth" and the True Church that must no doubt go along with it.


 The Worldwide Church of God was a cult. All of her splits, splinters and slivers are cults.  Gerald Flurry and soon son, is a cult leader.  Dave Pack is a cult leader.  Bob Thiel is a  cult leader, albeit a weak one. Gerald Weston is a cult leader, sincere I imagine but ill informed theologically and mistaken,  as are the many lesser gods in the former WCG pantheon of the self appointed and out of the mainstream Christian and informed perspectives in New Testament studies, doctrine and belief.  In short, the more not like that one is, to them, the closer one is to the truth, which they are not.

What is a religious Cult?

1) Exclusive. They may say, "We're the only ones with the truth; everyone else is wrong; and if you leave our group your salvation is in danger."

2) Secretive. Certain teachings are not available to outsiders or they're presented only to certain members, sometimes after taking vows of confidentiality.

3) Authoritarian. A human leader expects total loyalty and unquestioned obedience.

For the most part, this third definition of cult is being used less and less today. Experts who watch for dangerous or harmful religious groups now use the term new religious movements. The word cult can hurt people because it carries so much negative meaning. My sister was accused of being in a cult just because she preferred hanging out with Christian friends rather than going out drinking with other friends. She might have been in with a group of people that was unlike the norm (because they devotedly followed Christ), but she certainly wasn't following a harmful faith.

My friend Jason, however, fell in love with a girl who was part of a church that was exclusive, secretive, and authoritarian. At first he was happy to tell me about what he was learning. But as he got further into that religious group, he told me less and less. When the leaders of that church told him that he had to quit our church to keep dating the girl, I got very suspicious. When he got married and his parents couldn't even attend the wedding because they weren't members of Jason's new religion, it was clear that this was harmful."

This, however, would be and someday will be Dave Pack's worst nightmare.  An inside look  "Headquarters" by inquiring minds pretending to be members. Well, I mean, "false brethren crept in unawares, which evidently has been a fear historically in the Church. 

I found this surreptitious foray into the Headquarters another cultish church to be what Dave Pack and the Council of the Glassy Eyed lay awake at night contemplating their responses and damage control 

An uncomfortable visit inside the Headquarters of The Jehovah's Witnesses

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Another Year on Banned: Some Business Needs to Be Minded

"HOWEVER-- isn't our interest then in Thiel also a matter of US "not minding our own business"?? "

"Calling out the lies of Bob Thiel is not "meddling in his business" if Thiel was doing good for others instead of deliberately lying about his double blessings, dreams, and his self-appointment, then there would be no need to call him out. People's lives are at stake because of his lies...."

Posting:  Mind Your Own Business

Knowing that Gary is up to his earlobes in preparation for the Rose Parade, I just wanted to wrap up my own year here on Banned with the above quote from the previous posting  and reason why we all keep coming back here.

Some business needs to be minded as lives of loved ones and friend are at stake their continued association with the self appointed and grievously unqualified  "God chose me" types that have climbed out of the wreckage of the WCG.  Such teachings as "Fleeing" and "All things Common" are not minor or harmless teachings. On top of that, they are false teachings and an unnecessary burden in the lives of the sincere who are being mislead, either deliberately for gain or sincerely so out of the ignorance of their pastors. 

We have watched men of no renown or theological education creep step by step into every imaginable Biblical title the Bible has to give. It is  not through the hard work of a proper Biblical and Historical training, but through sheer ego and an addiction to prophecy and yet more of the same end time this time for sure focus.  Without an emphasis prophecy, real or imagined, understood or misunderstood, the Churches of God would have no message. We kid about them not having read the NT, but sometimes you have to wonder. 

 They endeavor to grow their churches by being different than all others, which appeals to some who think all others have missed the boat. Leaving one sinking ship to get on another is not going to turn out well.  

So as not to go long on this, simply put men like Dave Pack and Gerald Flurry are dangerous men in fake positions of theological authority.  Bob Thiel is harmless, in my view, unless, believing in the "when we flee" concept, imagines himself the one to signal the exodus. Then he becomes just as dangerous.  Pack and Flurry are dangerous NOW.  LCG seems stuck between the Craziness of RCG and the desire to mellow of UCG trying to please all in attendance and probably pleasing none. They can't. 

United Church of God, to me, seems WCG Lite.  They try to not major in the minors of days gone by but they have taken in many for whom majoring in the minors is a mental and spiritual habit and it comes with all the associated conflict they experience. I also feel for a ministry stuck in a life choice that I know not too far beneath the surface they wonder how they ever let themselves get into this. 

For myself all I can say is I was young, interested in all things Bible by birth into a Dutch Reformed Setting and it was the 60's after all. I am so grateful to myself for not going on to pastor in a splinter, as I was asked to do, and moved on to something that still fit my nature but without the drama and trauma of religion and role playing.  It does become too late in life to become anything we finally realize that perhaps we should have been or could have been but gave it up to follow the One True Church not knowing that in reality there never has been any such thing for very long before the blow ups in doctrine and belief began.  Each of course reserves the right to claim Trueness while others are the apostates from their point of view. 

I figure if Angels aprostates fall, what hope do we mere human have?  :)

So yes, the above anonymous quote is why most of us are here.  We may pick at each other for beliefs expressed and a lesson learned here for me has been being a pastor in WCG invites all sorts of emotional venting, projection and labels.  Ministrud, Dennis the Spiritual Menace, Apostate Former WCG minister (Bob Thiel's view) and in the Synagogue of Satan (Dave Pack's view I hear) are favorites.  A well known but goofy apologist outside the WCG experience called me "The High Priest of Marduk".  Has a nice ring to it. I'm actually a pretty sensitive to others type person. I went into both WCG as a teen and ministry in my 20's sincerely so thinking, as did most, that was what I was supposed to do and where I was supposed to be. 35 members of my family followed in and then out as I did. None are in any of the splinters for which I am grateful. All have moved on with their lives in divergent ways. 

Some business needs to be minded and this is why we most are here caring and sharing.  From John's of spoken ending of "Time will tell" , which it will to "Stop censoring me!", Banned is a good outlet to continue to process all our experiences.  My hope is that as we all mature in even that, we will do so in a kind, loving and compassionate understanding that we all deserve to extend to each other divergent experiences notwithstanding.

I wish you all a Happy Pagan, Drunken, Orgy filled, Anti Biblical, God hates you for it, You'll change your tune in the Lake of Fire you totally apostate, fallen away, twice dead, over to Satan turned for the destruction of your flesh that we can at least salvage your spirit someday New Year.

Don't go far. There is still some business to be minded...

And no, it doesn't actually matter if a New Year begins as Winter turns to Spring or Spring to Summer.  If the harvesting of crops is your signal, great!  If the return of light taking away the darkness of Winter is yours, in my view, even greater!   
(But that's just the Apostate Cosmologically and Astro-Theologically oriented and Axial Tilt is the Reason for the Season  me again:)

And too:
Apologies and Handshakes to those known and anonymous  I may have snarked back at along the way. That is not me nor my nature when it's all said and done. I don't see labeling and name calling as a positive purpose in life.  Also, a respectful thanks to John of Time Will Tell out of respect for his age and experience.  BB's insights and experiences have been a real help along the way here as well as well as Retired Prof , TLA and many others with Avatars or Anonymous.  I envision quite an interesting gathering if we all ended up at the same table for a meal! 

Monday, December 30, 2019

A Skill Too Far: The Fine Art of Minister/Member Minding Their Own Business

Dedicated to David C. Pack, Gerald R. Flurry, Dr Robert Thiel, Mr. Gerald Weston and All the Lesser Sliverados 

A Skill Never Learned

(I should add a previous article on The Church Member Bill of Rights as it is a specific list of topics in the mind your own business category up with which you should not put.

Dr Thiel, his yearly Christmas is Pagan orgasm having now run its course, has launched, as expected, into the New Year's is Pagan and we should not do it stage of the year. He's delighted that a non-Christian in Turkey has agreed with him that New Years is very bad and it should not be done.  There is the generic drunken orgy descriptions, but I suspect he's never actually been around most people who actually note the passing of the year. 

Personally, I can't stay up that long for no good reason and simply revert to sundown being good enough a time to start January 1st.  I have never been much of a party person to begin with and always take and park my car strategically whenever so I can leave when I want and I do.  Borderline introvert I suppose.

We all know quite well that past and present both minister for sure and member too often have never mastered the fine art of minding one's own business.  

Can you imagine someone telling Dave Pack, after a sermon on how they should give their money to him and often to simply "mind your own business"?  LOL!  Excellent!

Ditto for Bob Thiel who compulsively feels the need to set everyone straight on just about every topic he can think of that he himself believes he needs to adhere to personally. Much of it lies in the category of "mind your own business" even when he hunts and pecks around the Bible for God's authentication and validation on the topic. And of course, you find it. 

My dad had a now son adopted way of telling others, including his doctor (dad passed away at 98) and ministry (he was an elder in WCG) that anything they told him to do or how to think would be "taken under advisement."  In his world, that usually was the polite way to say "No, and please mind your own business."  The Doc told Dad of his concern because at 95 Dad had "an extra heartbeat" that concerned the Doctor. Whatever the remedy was supposed to be, Dad told him that at his age one never knew when they'd need an extra one and not to worry about it but he'd take the advice or even the should or must under advisement.  Works for me. 

I'm at the stage in belief or lack of it where I have no idea if there is a  real God telling others what to tell us as to how to think and be, or just a bunch of Priests and Scribes making stuff up in the name of their cultic deity for power and control. I'm more a fan of show up and cut out all the crazy middlemen if all this is so vitally important and my eternal future depends on getting all this exactly right or else.  I tend to opt for the latter but that's my perspective and issue based on my own experience and understanding. 

"Thus saith the Lord and now say I unto you" just doesn't inspire confidence in me after all the drama and trauma of the WCG and frankly growing up Church experiences. 

But my wish for these men in particular is to better practice the fine art of minding their own business and the wisdom to know when, which of course they won't.  Bob Thiel's recent rant on New Years, as expected, made me respond mentally almost immediately with "Bob, you need to mind your own business. I'll discuss it with God myself if and when the opportunity arises"

“There are only three kinds of business in the universe: mine, yours, and God’s.” ~ Byron Katie

Do you think you’re responsible for the universe? Or do you stick to your own business?

Where do you draw the line between your business and other people’s business?

If we suffer, it’s usually because we’re in somebody else’s business, not minding our own life and choices.

We try to give advice, dictate how things should (or shouldn’t) be, and complain when things don’t work out.

We feel anxious, stressed, disappointed, and discouraged.

Other people can do the same thing to you, sticking their nose in your business. How does that make you feel?

When you walk around with the weight of the world on your shoulders, you won’t be able to focus on yourself. Instead you’re focused outwardly, looking for ways to fix the planet.

The world can include your spouse/partner, kids, coworkers, neighbors, your countrymen, politics, the environment, and an endless barrage of causes for concern.

The thing is: when we are not focused internally, minding our own business, making sure that we’re following our own advice and living our lives truthfully, we won’t be able to help others. We’re doing the world and ourselves a disservice.

If you want to end your suffering of wanting to change things outside of your control, look within to see why you do it in the first place.

Why do we get into other people’s business?

Interfering in other people’s business can be so ingrained that we do it subconsciously most of the times. If it’s not an action, it’s with words or thoughts. We can’t wait for the person to finish so we can jump in with our advice.

The underlying reasons behind our behavior are usually one (or a combination) of the following.

Knowing better

We feel qualified to give advice. We know better than the other person. We can guide them in changing their behavior and doing things the way we see fit—for them.

Rigid expectations

We have a view of how things should be and expect everyone to comply with such a view. We feel the need to tell others how to act or what to do in order to comply with “what should be”.

An amplified sense of responsibility

We take it upon ourselves to feel responsible for everybody’s business. We will feel guilty if we don’t get involved. The flip side of this is: we don’t trust that others are capable of taking care of their own business.

Think about the times you got involved and offered unsolicited advice or help. Why did you do it? What can you learn from it?

The art of minding your own business

Knowing when to get involved in other people’s business (or not) is an art.

When it’s a matter of life and death, the action required is pretty clear. For example if someone is drowning, you will either try to save them or you’ll get help. But if someone is talking about a painful breakup or a challenge at work, you don’t necessarily need to butt in.

The art of minding your business involves:

Using your intuition

You focus internally on your own life and your own business. If a friend needs a compassionate ear, you listen intently, without showering her with advice.

Most of the time it will be about you offering sympathy, compassion and understanding rather than judgment, advice and opinions.

Neutralizing thoughts and actions

To know the parameters of your own business and to stick to them is an art. It takes practice to master the skill. It’s not easy to not offer advice or act on behalf of others.

It’s even harder to quiet the mind in a way that you stop thinking interfering or judgmental thoughts. You stay in a neural state.

Letting others be

As you learn to be in your own business, you let others be in theirs. You trust that they’ll do what needs to be done in a way that serves them best. You feel responsible only for yourself and your actions without fear or guilt.

Within the art of being in your own business, there are a few straightforward guidelines to help you in interacting with others and your environment.

The science of minding your own business

The following guidelines can be applied in most situations.

Don’t offer advice unless you’re specifically asked for it. You’re not obligated, nor expected to chime in.

Offer your help or advice with no strings attached. If you have expectations, take a step back and try to neutralize your thoughts about the situation. Help only from a place of love and compassion, not guilt or expectation.

Remove yourself from situations where you need to take sides and the situation doesn’t involve you, or could potentially damage a relationship. You won’t do others a favor by getting in their business. Let them sort it out and if they need your help, trust that they’ll ask for it.

When you mind your business you will feel lighter; you’re not in charge of the universe. You’re more at peace. You are responsible for your life and free from expectations and disappointments.

Start today by focusing on your own needs and business. Trust that others and the universe will take care of their business. The more you trust and focus inwardly, the more things start falling into place, the way they’re meant to be.