FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 117 THE BEATLES, Breaking down the song WITHIN YOU WITHOUT YOU Part B (Featured artist is Emma Amos )

 

The Beatles were searching hard for meaning in life and one of their stops along the way was Eastern Religion.

Here is a good review of the episode 016 HSWTL The Age of Non-Reason of HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE?, December 23, 2007:

Together with the advent of the “drug Age” was the increased interest in the West in  the religious experience of Hinduism and Buddhism. Schaeffer tells us that: “This grasping for a nonrational meaning to life and values is the central reason that these Eastern religions are so popular in the West today.”  Drugs and Eastern religions came like a flood into the Western world.  They became the way that people chose to find meaning and values in life.  By themselves or together, drugs and Eastern religion became the way that people searched inside themselves for ultimate truth.

(Francis Schaeffer pictured below)

Along with drugs and Eastern religions there has been a remarkable increase “of the occult appearing as an upper-story hope.”  As modern man searches for answers it “many moderns would rather have demons than be left with the idea that everything in the universe is only one big machine.”  For many people having the “occult in the upper story of nonreason in the hope of having meaning” is better than leaving the upper story of nonreason empty. For them horror or the macabre are more acceptable than the idea that they are just a machine.

Oasis – Within You Without You [HD]

 

Francis Schaeffer in his book HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? gives us some insight into a possible answer to that question:

The younger people and the older ones tried drug taking but then turned to the eastern religions. Both drugs and the eastern religions seek truth inside one’s own head, a negation of reason. The central reason of the popularity of eastern religions in the west is a hope for a nonrational meaning to life and values. The reason the young people turn to eastern religion is simply the fact as we have said and that is that man having moved into the area of nonreason could put anything up there and the heart of the eastern religions  is a denial of reason just exactly as the idealistic drug taking was. So the turning to the eastern religions today fits exactly into the modern existential  methodology, the existential thinking of modern man, of trying to find some optimistic hope in the area of nonreason when he has given up hope on a humanistic basis of finding any kind of unifying answer to life, any meaning to life in the answer of reason. 

An article calledHoly Wars” was based on Francis Schaeffer’s writings primarily and it noted:

Then came the Beatles. John Lennon had declared that his group was more popular than Jesus. But they weren’t willing to stop there. They sought to supplant the true God with everything false. After the rock icons returned from India they brought with them not only the music of the Hindu guru Ravi Shankar, but also his religion as taught by the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. They were so impressed with that guru’s Transcendental Meditation woo woo that they just had to convert the whole Western World to it. The counterculturalists took it all in, hook line and sinker.

 

“Within You Without You”

We were talking about the space between us all
And the people who hide themselves behind a wall of illusion
Never glimpse the truth, then it’s far too late, when they pass away
We were talking about the love we all could share
When we find it, to try our best to hold it there with our love
With our love, we could save the world, if they only knewTry to realise it’s all within yourself
No one else can make you change
And to see you’re really only very small
And life flows on within you and without youWe were talking about the love that’s gone so cold
And the people who gain the world and lose their soul
They don’t know, they can’t see, are you one of them?

When you’ve seen beyond yourself then you may find
Peace of mind is waiting there
And the time will come when you see we’re all one
And life flows on within you and without you

Francis Schaeffer has correctly argued:

The universe was created by an infinite personal God and He brought it into existence by spoken word and made man in His own image. When man tries to reduce [philosophically in a materialistic point of view] himself to less than this [less than being made in the image of God] he will always fail and he will always be willing to make these impossible leaps into the area of nonreason even though they don’t give an answer simply because that isn’t what he is. He himself testifies that this infinite personal God, the God of the Old and New Testament is there. 

Instead of making a leap into the area of nonreason the better choice would be to investigate the claims that the Bible is a historically accurate book and that God created the universe and reached out to humankind with the Bible. Below is a piece of that evidence given by Francis Schaeffer concerning the accuracy of the Bible.

Below is a piece of that evidence given by Francis Schaeffer concerning the accuracy of the Bible.

TRUTH AND HISTORY (chapter 5 of WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?, under footnote #96)

Now we should Now we should turn to one of the most spectacular of modern archaeological discoveries, Ebla. While digging on an extensive mound forty-four miles south of Aleppo in Syria in 1974/75, an Italian archaeological expedition came across another of the vast libraries to which we referred earlier. A small room within the palace suddenly yielded up a thousand tablets and fragments, while another not far away a further fourteen thousand. There lay row upon row, just where they had fallen from the burning wooden shelves when the palace was destroyed about 2250 B.C.

What secrets did these tablets reveal? Without wishing to seem unnecessarily repetitive, we can say immediately that Ebla represents yet another discovery from the ancient past which does not make it harder for us to believe the Bible, but quite the opposite. And remember, these tablets date from well before the time of Abraham. The implications of this discovery will not be exhausted by even the turn of this century. The translation and publication of such a vast number of tablets will take years and years. It is important to understand that the information we now have from Ebla does not bear directly upon the Bible. As far as has been discovered, there is no certain reference to individuals mentioned in the Bible, though many names are similar, for example, Ishmael, Israel, and so forth. Biblical place names like Megiddo, Hazor, Lachish are also referred to. What is clear, however, is that certain individuals outside the Bible who previously had been considered fictitious by the critical scholars, simply because of their antiquity, are now quite definitely historic characters.

For example, the Assyrian King Tudiya (approximately 2500 B.C.) had already been known from the Assyrian king list composed about 1000 B.C. His name appeared at the head of the list, but his reality was dismissed by many scholars as “free invention, or a corruption.”  In fact, he was very much a real king of Ebla. Thus, the genealogical tradition of the earlier parts of the Assyrian king list has been vindicated. It preserves faithfully, over a period of 1,500 years, the memory of real, early people who were Assyrian rulers. What we must learn from this is that when we find similar material in the Old Testament, such as the genealogical list in Genesis 7 or the patriarchal stories, we should be careful not to reject them out of hand, as the scholars have so often done. We must remember that these ancient cultures were just as capable of recording their histories as we are.

The most important aspect of the Ebla discoveries is undoubtedly their language. This has been found to be ancient West-Semitic language to which such languages as Hebrew, Canaanite, Ugaritic, Aramaic, and Moabite are related. Thus we have now, for the first time, the whole “tradition” of West-Semitic language stretching over 2,500 years–something which was previously true only of Egyptian and Akkadian, to which Babylonian and Assyrian belong.

Up until quite recently, therefore, this meant that scholars could argue that many words which appeared in the Hebrew Old Testament were what they called “late.” What they meant by this was that these words indicated a much later authorship than the time stated by the text itself. It would be as if one of us pretended to write a sixteenth-century  book using such modern words as AUTOMOBILE and COMPUTER. In the case of the Pentateuch, for example, this was one of the arguments which led some scholars to suggest that it was not Moses who wrote these books, as the Bible says, but anonymous scribes from approximately 1,000 years later. The discoveries at Ebla have shown that many of these words were not late, but very early. Here is yet another example of a claimed “scientific” approach that merely reflects the philosophical prejudices of the scholars involved.

The Bible and Archaeology – Is the Bible from God? (Kyle Butt 42 min)

 
Archaeology Confirms The Biblical Account

        Oftentimes people are not told about the archaeological discoveries that document the truths written in the Bible. We are told that science and the Bible disagree. But as is really the case: True science and the Bible do not contradict each other. We supply many short articles which show that archaeology confirms God’s Written Word, The Bible.

        The below articles are excerpted from various Archaeological trade journals and publications including Light on Archaeology magazine, and Associates for Biblical Research.

Archaeology: The study of human antiquities – usually as
discovered by excavation.  (Chambers English Dictionary)

Below we supply articles from the Associates for Biblical Research and Light on Archaeology to point the reader to the wealth of information that has literally been unearthed by the spades of patient, dedicated people which helps to confirm the historical accuracy of the Bible – God’s Word. Many sights exist in the lands mentioned in the Bible where artifacts of many kinds reveal the life and customs of the people who lived there many centuries earlier.

The Bible has been ridiculed and dismissed in recent times as inaccurate and unreliable. However, students of Biblical Archaeology have found that as the science of archaeology becomes more sophisticated, much more evidence is coming to light regularly that says just the opposite! Finds have been made that show us how historically accurate God’s Word really is.

For those of us who have been privileged to visit Israel – God’s Land, it is thrilling to look down and examine the shaft that Joab climbed up to take the city of Jebus (later Jerusalem) for King David.[2 Sam 5.7-9 : 1 Chron 11.5-7] It is exciting to wade through King Hezekiah’s tunnel, from the spring of Gihon to the pool of Siloam (Silwan). [2 Kings 20.20] It is fascinating to examine the actual scrolls found at Qumram by the Dead Sea and to walk around the Citadel of Jerusalem; the remains of Herod’s fortress palace where Christ was paraded, mocked and then condemned by Pilate.[ Luke 23.1-25] All of these places give us visible evidence of the accuracy of the Biblical record.

The following series of articles are only a small sample of the information available, but, hopefully, the object will be achieved to direct the reader to further studies of the deeper truths revealed in the Bible.

So with your Bible in hand, you are invited to examine the evidence to see whether the work of the archaeologist confirms or denies God’s Word.

NOTE:  We supply the below articles with the gracious permission of Bible Archeology.  They also provide a free magazine as well, the address for signing up for that is supplied at the end of this study.

TEL MARDIKH: Have you heard of the Empire of Ebla? It is not surprising if you have not – for modern history text books make no references to this kingdom, which existed from approximately 2,300 B.C. to 1,700 B.C.

In fact, only students of ancient Middle East history are likely to have come across the name of Ebla, and even then, only in passing – not realizing the extent and power of this empire which stretched around the shores of the eastern Mediterranean for nearly 600 years. Now the re-writing of our history books will again be necessary to fill the gaps in our knowledge of the past; for there has been a remarkable archaeological discovery in Syria between Aleppo and Damascus, on the site of Tel Mardikh.

On this site of a 4,000 year old fortification, perhaps the most remarkable ‘find’ of the century has been uncovered – 18,000 fired clay and rock tablets relating to the economy, administration and international dealings of this once great empire of Ebla.

Popular history of the third millennium B.C. is taught with little regard for the Biblical account of the customs, manners, social behavior and level of education of the people of this period.

Now for the first time it appears that there exists a record contemporary with the Biblical account of the times, and so different is the picture it reveals from that of accepted historical suppositions, that the linguist in charge of the tablets, Dr Pettinato, has claimed that this discovery calls for a fundamental revision of third millennium B.C. culture and history.

The tablets were discovered in some out-buildings of a palace situated within the vast fortifications around the top of the tel. Many of the buildings, due to their solid roofs of some two feet in thickness, are intact and free of debris. Most of the walls are plastered a gray-green color, with murals in good condition. The two rooms in which the tablets were discovered had been shelved with wood but, due to time and the weight of the tablets, this shelving had collapsed with some breakages; but the tablets, many containing 3,000 lines of cuneiform writing, are in readable condition.

The tablets tell of an ’empire’ and names many areas under the control of Ebla, such as Sinai, Assyria, Lebanon, Cyprus, Carchemish, Lachish, Gaza, Hazor and others. Bible students will readily recognize that many of these names appear in the Old Testament record and it is interesting to note that of the three languages of the tablets, an hitherto unknown tongue, closely resembling Hebrew is prevalent and many common names recorded by the people of Ebla are easily recognizable to Bible readers.

  • AB-RA-MU – (ABRAM)
  • E-SA-UM – (ESAU)
  • IS-MA-EL – (ISHMAEL)
  • IS-RA-EL – (ISRAEL)
  • MI-KA-EL – (MICHAEL)
  • MI-KA-YAH – (MICAIAH)
  • YE-RU-SA-LU-UM – (JERUSALEM)

Further, many common Ebla words are the same as Hebrew, such as ‘and’ (WA), ‘perfect’ (TAMMIN), ‘fall’ (NAPAL) and ‘good’ (TOB).

But perhaps most interesting of all are the quite extensive descriptions of the Creation and of the Flood, so often derided by modern historians.

The tablets are being translated and published and their contents will be invaluable in enlarging our understanding of the world of 2,000 BC; for they reveal a sophisticated system of international and civil law, including treaties of trade between Ebla and her neighbors within the framework of political agreements. These have been likened to the present-day Treaty of Rome between the EC members.

In addition, long lists of zoological, geographic and mathematical material have been found and there are weather forecasts in some meteorological texts. Records were made of visiting Mesopotamian scribes and mathematicians.

Proverbs and literary works are also preserved, including a set of bilingual tablets for the purpose of teaching translation, besides thousands of matching words. There seems no doubt that the tablets of Tel Mardikh contain the worlds oldest vocabulary lists – a source of no little consternation to students of ancient languages; for it is widely held that Biblical Hebrew is an evolved language, used during the first millennium BC Isaiah, the Hebrew prophet however, had indicated that his language was ‘the language of Canaan’, [Isaiah 19v18] and the Tel Mardikh tablets now support the Biblical reference – Hebrew has now to be recognized as one of the world’s oldest languages (and perhaps the language spoken by Noah, Canaan being the grandson of Noah through Ham). [ Genesis 10v6]

Interesting for Bible students is the fact that the Bible records that Abram, together with his father Terah, left the city of Ur in southern Mesopotamia to go into Canaan. They traveled as far as Haran and dwelt there. [Genesis 11v31,32] Haran was some 300 miles north east from the site at Tell Mardikh and appears to be named after Haran, Abram’s brother. [ Genesis 11v27 ] On his journey to Canaan, Abram in all probability, passed through Tel Mardikh, the then centre of trade and commerce, and of course, the language of Abram would be that of Ebla and of Canaan.

The other two languages written in cuneiform and discovered at Tel Mardikh are Sumerian and Akkadian. It had previously been assumed that the earliest cuneiform languages, were these two languages, developed in east and south Mesopotamia and the possibility that Syrian and Canaanite communications existed in cuneiform had been ruled out (with the exception of Ugaritic texts). But the Tel Mardikh tablets now reveal Sumerian scripts pre-dating those found in eastern Mesopotamia – throwing accepted theories of language origins to the winds. The Akkadian scripts found at Tel Mardikh refer mainly to the later period of the history of Ebla. One of the deities worshipped at Mardikh was Marduk or the Merodak of the Bible. It appears to be basically the same name as Nimrod, the ‘mighty hunter before the Lord’ mentioned in Genesis 10v9 Nimrod, who founded the city of Babel, appears to have been deified and the cult continued long after Ebla had ceased. The main consonants of Nimrod are M R D, hence:

  • N i M R o D
  • M a R D ikh
  • M e R o D ak

Tel Mardikh was then the place of worship for Mardikh.

The finds of Tel Mardikh and the Empire of Ebla, so far have only revealed confirmation of the scriptural narrative.

 

From Hinduism to Christianity

Article ID: DH121 | By: Dr. Mahendra P. Singhal

Growing up in an orthodox Hindu home is to enjoy limited freedoms — spiritually speaking. It was more than true in my case. I was raised in a rigidly structured and despotically ruled Hindu home with well-preserved traditions, well developed customs, and well-formulated expectations, along with, of course, a great deal of love, understanding, and exhortation. In spite of all the outward appearances of “peace” in our home, I used to sense tension and dissatisfaction with situations as they used to erupt from time to time. Each new episode was a note of despair in the chorus of our miserable lives. Each chord echoed with an air of helplessness which used to permeate every phase of our lives in our simple home. I distinctly remember being told, over and over again, that all our unhappiness was because of our karma coupled with the wrath of the gods against our family. I could not understand what we had done to deserve this and what could be done to change it, and my father would not allow me to speak of it. We went through the usual visits to the temples of various gods on set days in the year. I remember walking, sometimes riding a tonga (horse-driven vehicle), a long way to reach a particular temple of Shiva, one of the three primary Hindu gods. The idol of Shiva was frightening to behold. He was shown sitting on top of the world, holding human skulls in his hands, with water running from his hair and his eyes staring at you with a dreadful message: Worship me or you will be destroyed. The idol, decked with flowers, was always smeared with oil and red color. The total effect was to create a feeling of foreboding and fear. You came away from the temple fearing what the future might hold and wishing, without any substantive hope, that all will be well and that he — Shiva — would be content with you. I was never comfortable in the temple. The picture of Shiva used to haunt me for days after the pilgrimage. There was another god who was worshipped once a year in our home.

This was Ganesha, the god with the head of an elephant and the body of a man. This god is supposed to be extremely beneficial. A son of Shiva, he is reverenced for averting dangers. We used to buy a new clay model of the god each year, and worship him on the appointed day, according to the family’s traditions. It was on one of Ganesha’s celebrations that I became very disturbed about our gods and our obeisance to them. I distinctly recall the occasion. Sweets had been offered to Ganesha. We had been asked to close our eyes and pray for his blessings upon the home. I do not know why but I could not close my eyes. I was horrified to see a small mouse descend upon the offerings which had been placed before the god and Ganesha was unable to control this tiny creature. “If he cannot protect himself,” I said to myself, “how can he protect this house?” I lost faith in that god on that day; and I believe that my journey to discover the true God began at that event. Two events occurred in rapid succession soon after that experience. One, my father insisted on my receiving training in the Hindu scriptures, especially the Bhagavad Gita, the Vedas, and the others. Secondly, an ad in the local newspaper about a Bible correspondence course led me to begin a study of the Bible. The Vedas and the other books were interesting, but they were decidedly speculative. There were no definite answers.

The Bible, on the other hand, pointed to definite answers. God loves people. God made His love known to people, of His own initiative, when He sent Jesus Christ to the world. A God pleading for me was a mind-boggling mystery. While I was struggling to understand religions and religious ideas, my school work was moving, as it were, along regular channels. After receiving my masters degrees in mathematics and education, I was hired to teach in a Christian boarding school in Mussoorie, India. The school was run by Christian missionary societies to propagate Christian truths to the students who were not necessarily Christians. People attended this school because of its emphasis on academic excellence and because the medium of instruction was English. Proper language was taught, encouraged, and developed. The school needed a mathematics instructor, and the principal, an Australian missionary, was, as he later told me, led to offer me the position in spite of the fact that I was not a Christian. He (and I am grateful for his willingness to listen to the Lord) responded to the leading of the Lord not only in hiring me to teach in that school, but also in witnessing to me — in words, in his separated living, and in his priorities. One of the staff at the school mentioned the sacrificial death of Jesus Christ on the cross to me. “He died,” he stated, “for man to be free from his bondage to sin and to enjoy victorious life forever.” That sounded wonderfully peaceful and achievable, but I dismissed the witness, because, in my opinion, it was too simple. There has to be much more to life than just simple faith in Christ’s death on the cross.

I had been trained to believe, in the words of the Upanishads: “He truly knows Brahman who knows him as beyond knowledge; he who thinks that he knows, knows not.” I had been led to believe in searching for answers, and I had been taught that such a search could take many, many lives. Sages had attempted to discover the truth and the reality of Brahman for centuries, but without any success. I was under the conviction that real truth is found within oneself. God and man are essentially one. Separation comes from being born in this illusory world which catches man in its embrace and entices him away from finding the true meaning of life and existence. Deliverance is impossible unless one renounces the allurements of this world. I had been trained to believe that God is unknowable, and therefore, beyond the reach of man. And here was Jesus Christ, hanging on the cross, bleeding to death at the hands of Roman soldiers, declaring his forgiveness for their crass brutalities — God searching for man and not man looking for God within himself. There was another dimension to my dilemma. Coming from the family I did, my acceptance of Jesus Christ would make my parents lose their social respect and position in the whole community. My brothers and sister would suffer disgrace. That, too, was unthinkable. Even though I was working away from home in a different environment, I did not really feel free to make my own decisions. I tried to talk to some of the missionaries about my predicaments. They could not understand the heavy cultural factors.

They felt that one should simply make a decision to follow Jesus Christ and that is all that really matters. Some missionaries were totally ignorant of Hindu traditions and the social implications which they impose on people. They dismissed my arguments as inconsequential. I was not ready to buy the argument that we live, and therefore die, only for ourselves, by ourselves. The endless debate would have continued, I am sure, if I had not met Major Ian Thomas of the Torchbearers of England, who was holding meetings in a church in Mussoorie. He took the time to listen to my hesitations, my arguments, and my analysis. He, with great sensitivity and keen insight, explained the claims of Jesus Christ on my life. “Jesus Christ,” he explained, “will enable you to solve your dilemmas after you accept Him. He will be on your side.” Major Thomas did not lead me to the final surrender but he prepared me for the final outcome. I knew, after spending almost five hours with him, what I had to do. There was no denying the fact that Christ had been calling me to accept Him as my personal Savior and to follow Him — irrespective of the cost. The call was extremely personal and urgent. I mused about the possibilities for a few more days.

However, I could not get rid of pressures which were continuing to increase. I could sense that a decision had to be made. I turned to Jesus Christ on July 16, 1963 at 2:00 a.m. in my bedroom — all by myself. He became my Savior. Praise His wonderful name!! I had not counted on the cost which was to be paid for the decision, however. I expected rejection and humiliation from my friends and relatives. I even expected some mockery from some of them, but I was not ready for what came my way after my conversion: my own family disowned me. I was no longer a part of the biological family in which I had been born. My friends shunned me. They began to avoid me as if I had contracted some dreadful contagious disease. With all the pains and burdens, with all the loneliness, and with all the struggles, I am nonetheless determined to follow the Lord. He is my answer, my salvation, my friend. As Major Thomas assured me, He has never failed me; He has always been there — to help, to direct. I am not following an idea, a creed, or a philosophy; I am not searching for an inner revelation; I am not working for a final deliverance. No, I am following Jesus Christ, who is the final revelation, the total deliverance.

Dr. Singhal is the chairman of Hinduism International Ministries, Post Office Box 602, Zion, IL 60099-060

Today’s featured artist is Emma Amos

Emma Amos: Action Lines

Biography

Painter, printmaker, and weaver Emma Amos was born in 1938 and grew up in Atlanta, Georgia, where her parents owned a drugstore. She began painting and drawing when she was six. At age sixteen, after attending segregated public schools in Atlanta, she entered the five-year program at Antioch University in Yellow Springs, Ohio. She spent her fourth year abroad at the London Central School of Art, studying printmaking, painting, and weaving. After receiving a BA from Antioch, she returned to the Central School to earn a diploma in etching in 1959.

Amos’s first solo exhibition was in an Atlanta gallery in 1960. In that same year she moved to New York, where she taught as an assistant at the Dalton School and continued her work as an artist by making prints. In 1961 she was hired by Dorothy Liebes as a designer/weaver, creating rugs for a major textile manufacturer. In 1964 she entered a master’s program in Art Education at New York University. During this time Hale Woodruff invited her to become a member of Spiral, a group of black artists that included Romare Bearden, Norman Lewis, and Charles Alston. She was the group’s youngest and only female member.

She married Bobby Levine in 1965 and received her MA in 1966. She had a son, Nicholas, in 1967, and her daughter, India, followed three years later. While the children were small, Amos focused on sewing, weaving, quilting, and doing illustrations forSesame Street magazine. In 1974 she began teaching at the Newark School of Fine and Industrial Arts, and in 1977 she developed and cohosted (with Beth Gutcheon)Show of Hands, a crafts show for WGBH Educational TV in Boston, which ran for two years.

In 1980, Amos was hired as an assistant professor at the Mason Gross School of Art, Rutgers University. She earned tenure in 1992, was later promoted to Professor II, and served as chair of the department from 2005 to 2007. She continued teaching there until she retired in June 2008.

Amos’s work has been exhibited internationally and is included in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Wadsworth Atheneum, the New Jersey and Minnesota state museums, and the Dade County and Newark museums. She has won prestigious awards and grants.

She continues to create work in her studio in NoHo, New York City. She lectures and participates in symposiums, and shows the work nationally. Emma Amos also serves on the Board of Governors of Skowhegan and in the National Academy Museum.

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