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28177
“Will Pope Francis Become a Holy Man for the World?”
by Huffington Post - Religion - Deepak Chopra   
January 7th, 2016

Pope Francis I is poised to be more than a very popular pontiff graced with humility and an approach of love and gentleness, two words he often uses. He could rise to become a symbol of holiness beyond the Catholic Church, as the Dalai Lama is a symbol of enlightenment beyond Tibetan Buddhism. Pope Francis has designated 2016 a Holy Year of Mercy, beginning on December 8 of last year.

The specifically Catholic aspect of this announcement is that the Church will be "a witness of mercy," but for those of us who aren't Catholic, there's a universal message voiced personally by the Pope: "No one can be excluded from God's mercy." The question, then, is how potent this mission will be. Francis I has already achieved something extraordinary by helping to bring the U.S. and Cuba together in a historic reconciliation. Can being a witness actually extend mercy in a world where, to the distress of all believers, God has been hijacked by fanatical extremists?

Only the Pope knows what actions he will take.  Standing outside the Church looking in, millions of non-Catholics feel a fresh wind blowing. Pope Francis has shown that he is aware of world problems, and from the outset he has occupied a unique position. He's become a spiritual exemplar whose personal values remind us of the Jesus we learned about as children. In India I was educated as a boy by Irish Christian Brothers, because my parents believed that their schools were the best.

The Christian Brothers were gentle propagandists. We boys accepted them as friends, but we also knew that our teachers would be delighted if we converted to Catholicism. At home my family was ecumenical, and streams of every faith flowed through our door. I was inspired by Jesus, even as I went through several turbulent phases later in life, from idealist to agnostic, before adopting scientific medicine as my faith, and eventually becoming what I'd call a practicing idealist.

Was Jesus a practicing idealist, too? We'll never know, because the historical Jesus has been lost, and he may have spread the Gospel for as little as eighteen months, probably no longer than three years, before the Crucifixion. but Pope Francis appears very much to be a practicing idealist, and the causes he has thrown his weight behind, such as global warming and the plight of the poor, require every ounce of practicality and idealism both.

But every pope is also the guardian of a second Jesus, the Jesus of theology. to an outsider, it has appeared that modern Catholicism has been mired in a rearguard effort to protect theology at all costs. As beloved as John Paul II was, his views on dogma were totally conservative, and his strong arm of enforcement, the cardinal who became Benedict XVI, was even more strict. Under their guidance, the Church fell behind by decades when it came to modern social trends.

I've used the word "outsider" because we non-Catholics have no stake in how the Church conducts its affairs. But if Francis I is the most conscious of modern popes when it comes to modernizing the Vatican, he might still wind up as a symbol of the theological Jesus. That would be a shame, because the theological Jesus, a creation of Church politics (and revelations) over two millennia, may be unsalvageable. He is mired in dogma, and it is dogma that has driven countless believers to label themselves as "spiritual but not religious."

The Church is perennially worried about its straying flock, and here I will take the risk of advising the Pope about how spiritual he should be. There is a third Jesus who today stands higher in modern reputation than either the historical or the theological Jesus. This is the Jesus of the Sermon on the Mount, a teacher of higher consciousness. The Sermon on the Mount stands apart from the rest of the New Testament because it concentrates a mystical worldview that cannot be accepted in normal waking consciousness.

Editors Note....Here we see the attempt by the new age to unify with the New Christianity which of itself new age.

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