The notion that there is an underlying mystery beyond and above the Gods is not new. We can trace this thought even to primitive cultures. Usually they display a hierarchy of Gods with a High God representing the Ultimate Mystery. In time some cultures began to equate their High Gods to the inherent Mystery of the Universe. This probably resulted in a competition between rival cultures for the position. To have GOD on the side of a culture was a coveted title. With it they could become the dominant culture in the region. As dominant cultures they could take other's lands for their people, capture slaves to do their menial work and to sacrifice to their Gods. The rivalry is often decided by wars or magical demonstrations. The culture that prevails in the war or demonstrates superior magical tricks often won the title.
But there are no eternal guarantees in life. The strongest or the cultures that claims to have GOD on their side does not always win. And in earlier times cultures that supposedly had GOD on their side were often over powered by other cultures and displaced or enslaved. When this happens the seers of the displaced culture often explained it as punishment for turning away from their Gods or worshipping foreign Gods. But for ages humans have been known to blame others for their problems. If the "dog" did not eat it, another person must have been responsible.. And if there is no one to blame then it must be the Gods. Fortunately for them and unfortunately for us the Gods cannot defend themselves.
We are in an age when people take full responsibility for their actions and in more ways than not we are to blame for the things that happen to us, not the Gods. We now know that Gods have no power of their own; they are kept alive only by their worshippers. All power belongs to the inherent Mystery within the Universe. Cultures use their Gods to claim identification with the Mystery but the truth is that no one owns the mystery. Instead the Mystery owns all of us and GOD can turn off our apparent powers at any time.
The seers of the Upanishads were among the first to demonstrate the helplessness of the Gods in the encounter between the Gods and the Devils. In an episode of a show of power the Gods won a victory and thought with pride that they did so solely by their own efforts. Brahman appeared to them at that moment but none of the Gods recognized the universal Mystery. So they asked Agni, the God of Fire, to find out. Agni approached and boasted how he knew all things and how he could burn everything on the surface of the earth. Then Brahman place a piece of straw before Agni and asked him to burn it. Agni mustered all his power to burn the piece of straw but he was unable to burn it. Next they sent Vayu, the God of Air. Vayu approached Brahman and boasted how he could blow away everything on the surface of the earth. Again Brahman placed the same piece of straw before him and asked him to blow it away. Vayu tried with all his strength but was unable to move the piece of straw. Next they sent Indra, the God of Thunder to find out but Brahman disappeared. In Brahman's place Indra saw Uma, God the mother. Uma told Indra that they won their victory with the help of Brahman; and that Brahman is the underlying power in all creatures.
The Upanishads were composed around 600-200 B.C.E. and it is unbelievable that it took this long for us to realize that we are being deceived. But this is a typical example of human stagnation and inertia. We believed what we were told without making any effort to find out the truth. We did not heed to the statement that "the beliefs of our ancestors are our liabilities". How can we change the circumstances of our lives when the very foundation of our beliefs is flawed?
The truth is that there is an underlying Mystery within the Universe we call GOD; and that there are also Gods sponsored by different cultures. But there is no God because Gods are culture bound. GOD is the only Universal Spirit. Further if we acknowledge the notion that a foreign culture or nation has the only GOD then we are willing to take a subordinate or an inferior position in life. They can dictate whether we receive the blessings of GOD or not. Fortunately we live at a time when many people have acknowledged the blessings of GOD irrespective of their culture, religious beliefs, color, omissions or transgressions. We are FREE and that freedom entitles us to worship our Gods and not foreign Gods.
The purpose of the Book of the Oppressed is to empower the oppressed. The oppressed are now in charge of their beliefs. They are no longer tied to foreign religions and foreign Gods. They can now worship their own Gods and write their sacred stories for the benefit of their children, the elevation of their ancestors and the education of the world.
When we replace indigenous Gods with foreign Gods we deny the people their experiences, their cultural values, their history and the source of their unity. To deny these things to any culture or nation is to deny them of their very existence and that is wrong. If we really want to help the best that we could do is to point to the LIGHT without introducing our Gods or our books. The SPIRIT that guides us also guides them and at the proper time they will also see the LIGHT within them.
While the Gods unite their people, GOD unites all creatures. This is where we come face to face with each other for the first time. We are no longer strangers because we have realized the STUFF that connects all creatures.. This is where we realize our true brotherhood. We share a common SPIRIT that cannot be separated by religion, nationality, color, race, culture, Gods, or beliefs. This is our true heritage!
A little girl lived in Buguma, Nigeria. She learned about AKASO's love for children at a very young age. She sang praises to the Goddess and lives and breathes AKASO. She loved AKASO with all her heart more so because AKASO favors children. How could anyone with a heart tell this little girl that the AKASO she loves to much is not one of the Gods?
Are you having religious problems? Are you finding it difficult to believe in foreign religions? Do you think that your people have been scammed into believing foreign Gods? Do you want to change the destiny of your people? Do not worry because there is still hope. For a small donation we will send you The Book of the Oppressed. Your donations help us to maintain this site and provide educational programs to the public. Thanks for your support.