The True Nature of Truth

There is an old saying that goes: “Never discuss religion or politics in polite company.” Sage advice, right? It is obvious that people do not like their beliefs, values, or ideologies being questioned or undermined. My assumption is that it causes insecurity and spawns fear, and fear turns quickly into anger, and anger into resentment.

A long time ago, as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, I used to preach from door-to-door, and one of the lessons I learned was to convey such messages gently. In fact, someone stated that to blatantly challenge other’s beliefs would be like, “yanking the rug out from under them.” Nobody likes hitting the floor unexpectedly. God is a God of peace and love. Or so the Bible says. From what I’ve observed, I have to assume it all depends on the situation.

My cousin is a Scientologist, and as she recently asked me to mention this:
“Don’t forget to make sure the viewers (readers) know that I am the 1st Scientologist in the family. And proud of it. I know it will be helping mankind repair this messy planet’s ethics.”

Do I agree with the Scientologist’s precepts and practices? I do not. But I do admire her tenacity and devotion to wanting to apply what she’s learned, and how she works so hard to help others by doing so.

My second eldest son is an existentialist and a deist. He shares with me his insights and beliefs on the expansion of the mind, and growth of the spirit, and he, like our cousin, explores his spirituality thoroughly, and practices what he learns.

Do I agree with deism or the purely existential search for God? I do not. At least not in it’s entirety, and although most of the precepts and beliefs I do hold are taught by Jehovah’s Witnesses; I certainly take no offense toward anyone who will attempt to assist me in my quest to better understand and discern ‘The Truth’.

Also, I respect that both of the above are set on their own course toward their pursuit of eternity, and…that said, although we disagree on many of the precepts relating to God, eternity, etc., I have no right to project animosity toward them, nor to strike any attitude of superiority in regard to my own ideology over theirs. Why should I, because both their’s and mine are essentially, unprovable!

Why are they unprovable?

Well, I should qualify the statement of provability by saying that these are unprovable on this plain of existence. Only when we each solve the great mystery of transference after death, will we know who, if any of us, is absolutely correct. In reality, we can argue the point until, as they say, the cows come home, and yet at the end of it all each of us still fears what may lay in store. As William S. put it, “What dreams may come when we have shuffled off this mortal coil must give us pause. There’s the respect that makes calamity of, so long life.”

Having observed, evaluated, analyzed, meditated on, and written numerous journals about people over the past forty-plus years, and not only those with whom I associated, but of ALL of those who claim to be “spiritual” people; common, famous, and infamous. Among all of those, there were, in my estimation, none worth emulating in regard to their behavior and/or ideologies. If you are a Christian, then you are familiar with, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23)

When considered rationally, the only way something can be PROVEN is if there is a single source that does not rely on opinion, conjecture, or supposition. A single source that everyone agrees is factual, irrevocable, without corruption or contradiction, and most importantly; unquestionably true! However; does such a source exist?

Laughably, most of the worlds population says there is such a thing. The example below is the short list of religious texts that people of this planet venerate and hold to be truth:

  • Bahi’a – Kitab i Aqdas / Kitab i Iqa’n
  • Buddhist – Tiptaka (In Pali Script)
  • Christianity – Bible
  • Hinduism – Bhagwat Gita, Ved, Uphishad
  • Islam – Quran, Sunnah
  • Janism – Jain Agamas
  • Judaism – Torah (Tanakh or Hebrew Bible)
  • Mormonism – Bible (King James Version) /Book of Mormon / Pearl of Great Price
  • Paganism – tradition and/or varied and often non-specific text
  • Rastafari – Bible / Kebra Nagast / The Promise Key / Holy Piby
  • Shinto – Kojiki / Nihon Shoki / Fudoki
  • Sikhism – Guru Granth Sahib
  • Taoism – Tao te Ching (Daodejing) / Zhuangzi / Daozang
  • Zoroastrianism – Zend Avesta

The source is: QuickGS, to which I will attribute the accuracy of this list, or lack thereof. The point is, there are MANY religious text, and few of us, if any, could find a way to subject ourselves to the learning and comprehension of each of them, ergo, we will most likely latch onto the one that is most popular within the region to which we are born.

Personally, I believe that the Bible is far and above everything else that claims to offer “the truth.” But the Bible, is also the only book I have ever been exposed to, and the book that I learned to be the oldest, most widely read book in the world. Does this, however, necessarily “prove” anything true about its revelation of the creation, or our continued existence, or the spiritual eventuality of mankind? Well, proof or not; those dedicated to it, read it as absolute truth and nothing but. Every thought and every word they glean from it, they hold to be true, no matter what.

Yes, you are correct in thinking that, “Just because they believe it. has no bearing on whether or not it is TRUTH, or whether or not it holds anything that pertains to TRUTH. What they believe is irrelevant, and what anyone else believes is equally irrelevant.” If it does hold “The Truth,” why are there so many sects and schisms among those who call themselves ‘Christians’? How can one book mean so many different things, to so many different people?

Descriptively, the Bible is a collection of sixty six books written through thousands of years, by about forty writers, many of whom claim that the words were given to them directly by our Creator. Therefore, the Bible is considered to be the truth because it declares itself to be such. Nothing else, no external sources, but the contents of the book, itself, claims it to be so.

2nd Peter 1:20, 21

“20 For you know this first, that no prophecy of Scripture springs from any private interpretation. 21 For prophecy was at no time brought by man’s will, but men spoke from God as they were moved by holy spirit.”

So then, ‘IF” we accept that the Bible is inspired by our Creator, or God, and that these men were writing what our God (Jehovah, Psalm 83:18) dictated to them; how do we account for all of the different churches, beliefs, and so on, many of which fight and kill one another over their so-call interpretation of “The Truth.”

“… This can be seen in Christian fundamentalism, which idolizes the Bible yet largely misunderstands it. Fundamentalists venerate a Bible that does not really exist, a perfect text that perfectly reflects what they believe.” “…central doctrines, such as the trinity, that are almost entirely absent…central ideas in the New Testament …’salvation by faith through grace’, that at least until the reformation, were never part of official orthodoxy at all.”

A History of the Bible – The Story of the Worlds Most Influential Book, 2019, p.3, by Professor John Barton, the Oriel and Laing Professor of the Interpretation of Holy Scripture at the University of Oxford England,

During the so-called “Great Awakening” of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, besides the mainstream Protestant, Catholic, and Jewish beliefs, new offsprings of these religions flourished across America. Among these were the International Bible students that later became Jehovah’s Witnesses, the Mormons, the orthodox churches, the reformed churches, the fundamentalists, the Pentecostals, and so on and so on.

Besides these, there are scores of others that use the Bible, but do not necessarily consider it to be the final authority on their beliefs and practices, e.g. Scientology, et al, but they all acknowledge the voracity of the Bible and its importance to the human family.

Personally, however, I happen to know in my heart that the precepts of Jehovah’s Witnesses are far more in line with truth, logic, and practical thinking than any other belief system I have studied in the humanities, or elsewhere.

From the beginning of the Bible to the end, the enveloping theme of God’s Kingdom under the rule of His son, Christ Jesus, is the only practicable explanation for the hope for mankind. Far surpassing the nonsense that ‘everyone’ is going to heaven, or the even greater nonsense of transcendentalism, transcendence, moving through circles, etc., and so on.

Do I believe that the people who are in charge of the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society, otherwise known as the “Governing Body,” are speaking to, or directly in communication with God, Jehovah? No, I do not.

They are men, just like any others when it comes to their foibles and personalities. They are not gods or angels, nor do they exhibit any of the attributes of such. They are, however, honest hearted seekers of truth, and despite their shortcomings as humans, will continue to strive to understand what our Creator expects of us and will help us to accomplish. These men, in turn, do their best to communicate to us what they understand the Bible to say, not in a dogmatic way, as do the churches, but in a way that beckons us to consider, evaluate, reconcile, and understand what is written in the same fashion of the Beroeans.

Jesus’ teaching is plain: we become Christian by abandoning our selfish interests, and devoting our life solely to God.
If anyone wants to come after me, let him disown himself…” Jesus said. (Matthew 16:24)
This is what everyone who wants to be a Christian (or Christ-like) has to do. Can we really be considered a Christian otherwise?

Well, yes, to some degree we can. In fact, none of us can live our lives so selflessly that we could nullify the sacrifice that Jesus made on our behalf. It is simply impossible for us to do so, considering our spiritually weakened condition, but we have to try, and we have to ask for help through prayer in order to keep us focused.

Jesus taught his disciples that, by bringing their lives into harmony with Jehovah’s requirements; gaining God’s spirit; they would be able to accomplish anything. “If you had faith the size of a mustard grain, you would say to this black mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea!’ and it would obey you.” (Luke 17:6) This means we have to USE the Bible, to know what it says, and to put it into practice.

Did such faith exist among men, even in Jesus day? No, not completely. In fact accounts are presented in the Bible in which Jesus told his disciples that they could not perform certain miraculous healing and such, because of their lack of faith. That lack of faith to move mountains plagues us even today. The important lesson is that they tried, and continued to try to gain that faith.

The apostle Peter actually walked on water for a short distance. Apostles were given the ability to cure illnesses by the touch of the hand. Prophets were also granted the use of many miraculous powers including raising the dead to life. All miraculous in the sense that God granted it and performed it through them, and not for the titillation of curiosities, or to impress, but to show that the hope offered through Jehovah and the Christ Jesus is REAL.

So knowing that there are no perfect men walking the Earth today. Knowing what I do know, that Jesus, the one who perfectly emulated his Father, his God, did set the example for us to strive for. That ‘man’ is the only one whose character and being that wish to emulate, and I suffer each day in the knowledge that I am unable to do so.

When one will do as Jesus said, “disown himself” and recognize the corrupt nature of the churches and other so-called religious teachings; abandon all preconceptions and false notions about the Bible; about God and eternity; about Jesus and his relationship with his Father; only then will the true power of the Truth be recognizable and useful, and that will be found only within the pages of the oldest book known to man, given to us by an undying author who safeguards its purity, and is willing to help anyone of us to understand it.

Whey Back When

Little Miss Muffet, sat on her tuffet, eating her curds and whey!

Foregoing the part about the icky spider, one has to wonder how many people today even know what curds and whey are (or should that be, what curds and whey ‘is‘?) Anyway, having recently observed a college coed who could not read an analog clock, I feel certain that this nursery rhyme is quickly losing significance.

We, that is my wife and I, only recently began experiencing a new found liking for curds and whey, aka cottage cheese, which is, like so many things on the market today is supposed to be good for you.

Merriam-Webster defines whey as: “the watery part of milk that is separated from the coagulable part or curd especially in the process of making cheese and that is rich in lactose, minerals, and vitamins and contains lactalbumin and traces of fat.”

Now I don’t know about you, but I just can’t get enough ‘lactalbumin’.

In my experience, a cup of cottage cheese that is coated a with light smattering of salt and lots of pepper on a plate with the wedges of a fresh juicy peach, is not only a healthy lunch, it’s quite delicious! Regardless, I believe the reason that I enjoy cottage cheese is because of my grandfather, John Matthew, aka “Pop” Eichenlaub and his odd, and at times, savory depression-era meals.

The Old House
Our home in 1952 @ 1410 9th Av. Altoona, PA. Old PRR row house.

Like so many post-depression era families, ours were ‘humble’ beginnings, which looked more like poverty than anything else, but I guess humble works if you like. It was the early 50’s and we enjoyed odd foods like coffee-soup, poor-man’s gravy, I even recall pickled pickled pig’s feet and other such delicacies. I call it sushi for the poor. Our diet was thin because Pop had a meager pension from the railroad, and our father had difficulty passing a barroom when he had money in his pocket. so food was often scarce.

In the early 50’s there was a “Government Surplus Food Program” or “Commodities,” as we called it, that helped keep us alive. A precursor of food stamps. Of all of the good and the bad to recall from that period, nobody can forget the huge blocks of government cheese that are still around today! According to some, it was once called “The perfect food.” My mother would hold my hand as we waited in line for our box of food that always included a five pound block of the perfect food; American cheese.

  • Cheese and dairy products
  • Canned fruits and vegetables
  • Peanut butter, dried beans, jelly
  • Canned fish and various meats
  • Evaporated and nonfat dry milk
  • Breakfast cereals
  • Fruit juices and beverages
  • Rice, macaroni, spaghetti

That list displayed on the Internet is far more comprehensive than I recall ever receiving, but then, I was very young and may not recall all of it. But I do know that what we did receive often required a ‘tolerant’ palate, if you take my meaning. Even as a child who knew no better, the smell of the canned meat was nauseating; a very similar odor to today’s canned dog food. The peanut butter; a hardened mass of half ground peanuts beneath inches of yellow oil, when stirred long enough, became a tasteless, pasty goo that made the bread more filling. On the top of the box was that HUGE bag of puffed wheat cereal. Half the size of a bed pillow, the puffed kernels swam on top of the watered-down confectioners milk like tiny organic balloons that veritably disappeared like cotton candy on the tongue. A small child could consume the entire bag in five or six servings..

Better Than Butter

Although not mentioned in the list above, there was always a large sack of flour our mother used to bake bread. To put it in today’s vernacular, “OMG” was it amazing! We dared not let the smell of it baking to escape the house or we would have neighbors dropping by constantly; it was that good! Unfortunately, butter always seemed to be in short supply for some reason, but as a substitute, old Pop would come home with a tub full of cottage cheese which, for the two of us anyway, was better than butter!

Besides his cottage cheese, Pop also loved his canned tomatoes; i.e. whole tomatoes, peeled, uncut, and sweetened. Emptying the tomatoes into a bowl, he opened the cottage cheese and then filled our plates with a goodly portion of each. He taught me to coat them both with salt and pepper, and then taking the fresh baked bread slice, we would fork small bites of the cottage cheese and tomato onto the bread in succession, savoring each bite as we worked across the plate, rivaling even Marcel Proust’s savory description of petite Madeleines dipped in tea.

The bread served to provide a variety of meals;; like bits of fresh-baked bread soaked with coffee and covered with canned evaporated milk and sprinkled with sugar, which made our “coffee soup” (believe it or not, you can find ‘modern’ recipes for it on the web). Another was to fry bacon to an almost black char that was cooled and crumbled into the hot bacon fat, and then bits of flour are stirred in to form a thick, brown gravy. The gravy was poured over that same fresh-baked bread and sprinkled with apple vinegar to make a savory breakfast, lunch, or dinner, and sometimes all three. Probably the most unhealthy diet you can think of, but the memories of it all will always linger in the curds and whey.

The Flag; The Cross; The Stake…A Moot Point

Just recently I saw a middle-aged man wearing a t-shirt that was emblazoned with a giant religious cross in the background, and in the foreground is an America flag; essentially side by side with a caption that read: “I always stand for the flag, and kneel for the cross.”

Now, it’s logical to think that this gentleman feels that he is being very noble in his professing belief in God and country, and most others likely feel the same as he. Unfortunately, the one whose opinion matters most is not yours or mine, but that of our Creator; our God!

Does the Creator, our God, view this as a noble gesture? Or is such a statement and action quite the opposite of nobility, and actually an ungodly and unlawful act in our Creator’s eyes? Is this more so the expression of man’s ignorance and lack of understanding of God’s requirements as well as his lack of knowledge of what the Bible has to say about such a presentation and proclamation?

Consider this, if you would, please? First of all, to “stand for the flag” and putting the flag foremost, presupposes that the flag is somehow more important than anything God has to say in the matter, something we are forced, from birth, to believe through our government propaganda.

It also presupposes that this country alone is “doing the will of God” and has the right to raise itself to a level that is equal to, or above the Creator, and therefore “expresses the will of God.” Again, something we are forced to agree with from birth through the propaganda of political leaders who feel that the power of God was given them.

Of course, every other nation of the world presupposes the same things about their god and their countries; some even have many, many gods to back their claim. So, it appears we battle on more than one level of existence, both spiritual, and political. Yes, some actually do.

The second supposition is that the ‘cross’ represents true Christianity, but this is not likely to be the case, either. There is evidence that Christ did not die on a cross, but rather, was hung on an upright pole, or stake similar to a large fence post or perhaps something more like a telephone pole.

According to Roman tradition: His hands were overlaid, i.e. one on top of one another, above his head, and then nailed through the palms to support the weight of the body. The arms being pulled above his head put excessive strain on the heart, causing a much faster death. The feet were nailed as ell as lashed to the pole, but in order to expedite death, the legs were broken so that the full weight of the person would come to bear on the arms and cause the heart to literally burst from the pressure.

What though, if the Christ had died other wise; say, by hanging or a firing squad? Or even if they had burned him at the stake, or garroted him? What kind of symbol would people wear or display considering any one of these? Or would they display anything at all?

Jesus was murdered by the Romans, and hundreds of years after Christ died, when the Romans hijacked Christianity in 523 AD and called it Catholicism; they melded it with their pagan rituals and only then did the fallacy of the ‘cross’ surface and become the adopted to symbolize his death. The cross is of pagan origin and existed as a religious icon for centuries prior to Jesus. Ergo, it is not a fitting symbol to use to commemorate anything about him.

The 10 Commandments of God are still valid, or are they?

Exodus Chapter 20:4-6 (Please read all three translations – different Bibles)

New World Translation (NWT)
4 “You must not make for yourself a carved image or a form like anything that is in the heavens above or on the earth below or in the waters under the earth. 5 You must not bow down to them nor be enticed to serve them, for I, Jehovah your God, am a God who requires exclusive devotion, bringing punishment for the error of fathers upon sons, upon the third generation and upon the fourth generation of those who hate me, 6 but showing loyal love to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments.


New International Version (NIV)
“You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below.You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.

New King James Version (NKJV)
4 “You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; 5 you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, 6 but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.

Within the overall theme of the Bible, Jehovah (Psalm 83:18) established the “Kingdom of God,” which does not hold this or any country of the Earth in greater esteem than any other. In fact, Satan offered ALL the kingdoms of the Earth to Jesus to entice him away from his Heavenly Father. Luke wrote; 5 So he (Satan) brought him (Jesus) up and showed him all the kingdoms of the inhabited earth in an instant of time. 6 Then the Devil said to him: “I will give you all this authority and their glory, because it has been handed over to me, and I give it to whomever I wish.

Regardless, the SECOND COMMANDMENT should be sufficient for us to understand that just because the rest of the world does it, does not make it correct!
Again: “You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below.5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God,”

Bowing to anything, whether you are “saluting” a flag, or “bowing” to a cross; an idol is and idol. Satan is the ruler of this world, and we should not bow to anything he puts before us: Revelation 12:12 “12 On this account be glad, you heavens and you who reside in them! Woe for the earth and for the sea, because the Devil has come down to you, having great anger, knowing that he has a short period of time.

Love Songs For Darcy

You were just a few years old
Not many days ago, It seems
When I sat you on my arm
And we danced to love songs
And I sang along, to you,
and for you.

You dance now, and sing along
To songs of your own
My little girl
Married and grown
A woman with a child
To sing her own songs to.

But, still
When I think of you
Or look into your eyes
We will always be dancing
You and me, and I will always
Sing love songs for you.

James Eichenlaub 2001

Article #1 – Allow the Bible To Interpret Itself

The religion of Jehovah’s Witnesses is ‘True Christianity’

“…the Bible, when taken as a whole, must reveal a message harmonious and consistent with itself and with the character of its Divine Author.”

Aging…the sentence of death that ‘time’ imposes upon us all, makes it my duty to you, my family, to investigate and identify “what dreams may come when we have shuffled off this mortal coil.” as was so eloquently put. My understanding of the Bible is not someone’s “interpretation” of its contents, but is simply the contents presented and learned as a whole. Looking into any book with preconceived notions, you will misunderstand, or, if you wish, misinterpret its contents. Read/study the sixty-six books of the Bible casting aside what the so-called preachers/priests tell you is in it, and learn the truth for yourself. Ask and it will be given, knock and it will be opened. (Matthew 7:7)

By TRUTH, we mean to say that this source of information must be, 1) truly a work that is both inspired by and protected by God, our Creator, 2) recognizable in its entirety as a harmonious and complete message and, 3) must be presented so as to prove that all other schisms of religion, so-called Christian and otherwise, are doubtlessly invented by men and angels and are not those of God (Elohim…Jehovah), the Creator that gave us the words of the prophets and the apostles for us to prepare ourselves for life eternal in the Kingdom of, and by, God.

First of all, you and I were led to believe that Charles Taze Russell was the “founder” of the beliefs of Jehovah’s Witnesses. This is absolutely not the case. The links above and below will explain and can be corroborated by many witness and non-witness sources.

The name “Jehovah’s Witnesses” is nothing more than a title for a group of people who wish to be recognized separately and above the churches and other schisms of Christianity, and apart from all other of the world’s religions. Jehovah’s Witnesses are a group, an organization, not a religion. This has to be understood before anything else can make sense. The “religion” of Jehovah’s Witnesses is, however, true Christianity as taught by Jesus Christ, himself, and his apostles.

” When we read the Scriptures, we should take into account the context and the overall tenor of the Bible.”

(Let Us Compare Scripture With Scripture – WT Study Ed. 2006)

When you have questions and issues at work, sometimes the answers can be simple; i.e. you ask a colleague, or consult a reference a manual. Sometimes, however, the answers require extensive research, which often means using multiple sources and/or references. So why then, should understanding our Creator’s publication, The Bible, be any different?

Given there are sixty six separate books within the total bibliography of the Bible, and knowing they all play a part in understanding the book in its entirety, why would anyone try to formulate a belief system by using only parts of the whole? (e.g. “The old testament,” or “The new testament.”) Also, since this work is the only book provided to us by our creator, why would we go to any other books, especially those concocted by humans or angels, to corroborate its contents, when it, itself, is complete and unique.?

The sixty six contiguous books are recognized throughout the centuries of man’s existence as part of the Bible’s cannonic whole. Each book is known to pertain to the others within the overall volume in very specific ways, and in light of this, for anyone to say, “I live only by the *gospels,” is to say, “I am ignorant and know very little about anything.” Somewhat akin to learning how to add, subtract, multiply, and divide, and then calling yourself a mathematician. (*The gospels are what some call the first four books of the Christian Greek scriptures; Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.)