Ask Steve – What Religion Are You?

What religion are you?

I don’t identify myself with any particular belief system, philosophy, or religion, so this question doesn’t have any meaning for me. Just as your computer wouldn’t identify itself as the software it runs, I don’t identify myself as the beliefs I hold in my consciousness. I strive to install and understand lots of different beliefs, even seemingly conflicting ones. I’m neither a Christian nor a Buddhist nor an agnostic, just as my PC is neither MS-Word nor Photoshop nor iTunes. I explained this in detail in Podcast #013 – Beyond Religion.

To me a spiritual belief system is simply a perspective with which I can choose to view reality. To turn any particular belief into my identity is to fix my perspective and thereby cripple my freedom of thought. What would you say if your computer decided that it was a word processor and only a word processor? The machine would be fulfilling only a fraction of its potential. This is what people do when they fix their beliefs.

Identifying ourselves with our beliefs causes all sorts of problems. People kill each other when their beliefs are attacked because they think their very identity is being threatened. Imagine all the PCs in the world battling to convert every PC into a word processor, while the laptops fought to make all computers into spreadsheets. Can you really be only one or the other? Why not both? A belief is just a perspective, and every fixed perspective is inherently limited and incomplete. The main reason I study individual belief systems is to learn new ways of perceiving the big picture I hadn’t yet considered. But once I integrate those perspectives into my thinking, I no longer have a need for the individual belief systems. They are the shells one discards after consuming the tasty nut within.

Now as far as organized religion is concerned, such as belonging to a particular church, I have even less use for that. The various rules and rituals of organized religion are little more than a corruption of true spirituality, a lossy compression down to a lower level of awareness. The very concept of organized religion stems from fear, substituting tribal thinking and the concept of safety in numbers for the free intellection of conscious individuals. Today’s major religions remain pale shadows of the ascended masters who unwittingly inspired them.

Although I’m not a religious person, I am a deeply spiritual one. My entire life is centered around my spiritual beliefs. I don’t compartmentalize my spirituality — it flows freely through all areas of my life, inspiring my work, relationships, and even my (cruelty-free) diet. My personal development business is a rather obvious expression of my spiritual purpose to help people grow. Integrity to that purpose is more important to me than any level of external business or financial success. I even wrote into my LLC operating agreement that genuine service to others is a higher priority than profit generation. I’m not likely to attract any VC funding with that attitude, but it does seem to attract a far more significant source of support.

When I desire spiritual guidance, I go straight to the source and connect with God or other spiritual beings through meditation. There’s no need to go to some concrete building once a week to recite mindless incantations with a religious customer service rep.

I have many spiritual guides and role models, but the primary one is Jesus (Y’shua). Jesus is like my spiritual battery, my ultimate role model for personal growth. I’m not referring to the cryptic figure inaccurately reported in the various versions of the human scribed, politically motivated Bible. I mean the genuine ascended master who still serves us today from the nonphysical realms… if only we develop the ability to turn our gaze within and connect with him.

My true religion, as you can probably guess, is enlightenment — the pure spirituality on which all major religions are based but which none retain in practice. And the most promising pathway I’ve discovered that has led me steadily in this direction is the unyielding intention to eliminate every last drop of fear from my consciousness. When all the fear is completely gone, enlightenment is what remains.

This entry is part of the “Ask Steve” series. See the original Ask Steve post for details, or view the Archives (July 2006) to peruse the entire series.