-scale=1.0,maximum-scale=1.0" : "width=1100"' name='viewport'/> Plum Street Chili: I love Quakers. They make me want to be a better person. And they tell me how to do that.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

I love Quakers. They make me want to be a better person. And they tell me how to do that.

George Fox said this about those who quote scripture or Christ unaccompanied by agape love. I am sorely in need of love given current events. I am angry and scornful. Might as well be in Hell. 

The following passage is from "The testimony of Margaret Fox concerning her late husband," from The Journal of George Fox, 1694. In this excerpt, which contains the famous "what canst thou say?" query, Margaret Fell is describing George Fox's "sermon" at the Ulverston steeple-house. It was the first time she had heard him speak.
And so he went on, and said, "That Christ was the Light of the world, and lighteth every man that cometh into the world; and that by this light they might be gathered to God," &c. I stood up in my pew, and wondered at his doctrine, for I had never heard such before. And then he went on, and opened the scriptures, and said, "The scriptures were the prophets' words, and Christ's and the apostles' words, and what, as they spoke, they enjoyed and possessed, and had it from the Lord": and said, "Then what had any to do with the scriptures, but as they came to the Spirit that gave them forth? You will say, 'Christ saith this, and the apostles say this;' but what canst thou say? Art thou a child of the Light, and hast thou walked in the Light, and what thou speakest, is it inwardly from God?" &c. This opened me so, that it cut me to the heart; and then I saw clearly we were all wrong. So I sat down in my pew again, and cried bitterly: and I cried in my spirit to the Lord, "We are all thieves; we are all thieves; we have taken the scriptures in words, and know nothing of them in ourselves."
Members of the Society of the Friends of Jesus (Hicksite Quakers) believe divine revelation is ongoing. And it must be. This formula for living beats the 10 Commandments bigtime.

Simple Formula for Living

Live beneath your means. Return everything you borrow. Stop blaming other people. Admit it when you make a mistake. Give clothes not worn to charity. Do something nice and try not to get caught. Listen more; talk less. Every day take a 30-minute walk. Strive for excellence, not perfection. Don't make excuses. Don't argue. Get organized. Be kind to people [and all other beings]. Be kind to unkind people. Let someone cut ahead of you in line. Be humble. Realize and accept that life isn't fair. Know when to keep your mouth shut. Go an entire day without criticizing anyone. Learn from the past. Plan for the future. Live in the present. Don't sweat the small stuff. It's all small stuff.
We are not the dogs of God but his children. Prophetic religion has to do with relationships, not observances, with awe not belief, with love not guilt, with life not property, With the Way not moralism. Obedience to the Way is indeed of great use if it is freely given, but of no use if it is compelled. - Herrymon Maurer

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