1) What is THE PURPOSE OF RELIGION: Enlightenment, Meaning and Love in Jewish, Christian and Islamic Symbology about, and why should people read it?
At a time when religious differences continue to breed violence and animosity, my book is about the underlying decency, spiritual wisdom and Unity of our various faiths. The purpose of religion is not to retell history, it’s not a demand that we adhere to an impossible moral code, and it doesn’t require us to believe in all sorts of fantastic claims that defy rationality and logic. Rather, the real purpose of religion is to present the great Wisdom Teaching – through symbols, parables, allegories and metaphors – that shows us how to raise our level of being and return to communion with divinity. In other words, each religion presents an instruction manual for Spiritual Initiation! The story of the Israelites returning to the Promised Land, for instance, is not a literal story about a bunch of people on a journey. It’s a fabulous symbolic explanation of how the soul must journey from an inner state of material slavery (called “Egypt”) all the way home to spiritual freedom, enlightenment, and communion with God (a state of being represented by “Canaan”). The “Quest of the Holy Grail” is another such symbolic story. The different ways these stories are told by different cultures is a testament to the magnificent human imagination. But the common purpose that unites them, and us, is even more striking! But to understand these symbolic instructions, we need a ‘key’ to the ancient code. Fortunately, this key has been preserved in the writings of Plato and several other ancient writers. I present this key in the book. As a result, readers will get hours of pleasure and entertainment, as well as great knowledge, as they discover and rediscover the magnificent tales and legends from all our traditions – and they will read them with new eyes, new ears, and a new heart!
Jack Elias, CHT is founder and director of the Institute for Therapeutic Learning in Seattle, Washington. He is the author of Finding True Magic: Transpersonal Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy/NLP, a book and course which blends NLP training modalities with philosophical traditions of both East and West. Jack offers private sessions in Lucid Heart Therapy and Life Coaching. He offers live trainings and distance learning trainings in Transpersonal Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy/NLP. Jack also presents keynotes and other programs to teach audiences how to use the techniques of Transpersonal Hypnotherapy/NLP to achieve success,confidence, and a consistent sense of well-being.