“I see no place for the observance of any days, festivals, feasts, etc. Rather in Galatians 5 we have the principle set down, The Christian is free from the Torah”
“I see no place for the observance of any days, festivals, feasts, etc. Rather in Galatians 5 we have the principle set down, The Christian is free from the Torah”
“The supplementary strategy used to revitalize the group’s millennial hopes was the projection of unfulfilled portions of prior prophecies into the future through the issuance of redated predictions…”
“You would think the problems would make us hesitate to drag others into our doctrinal chaos and uncertainty. On the contrary, if we can convert more people to the same belief, we prove we were right all along… ignoring the fact that much of what the WCG says is crap.”
Celebrities who lecture us about how racist we are all live in the whitest areas possible.
Saturday, February 18, 2017.
“Without going into great detail, let me show you how Daniel can be interpreted by Daniel, and the reasons against Roman being included in the prophecies. The “little horn” (Dan. 7:8; 8:9), the “prince that shall come” (9:26), the king who will “magnify himself above every god” (11:36), seems to be clearly indicated in Daniel itself as a tyrant whose doings are the climax of the kingdom of Greece.”
The Mark of the Beast... "Here is what people have historically done instead: interpreters have simply proceeded to keep the prophecies up-to-date. They have made it to apply to their own day."
Those we pick to lead us as we follow blindly.
Transcript of a phone conversation between Dr. Robert Kuhn and Dr. Jakob J. Petuchowski. More coming up Sunday.
“Let me interject here that the Worldwide Church of God criticizes any and everyone freely, whether justified or not, whether correct or not, and where the person criticizing is qualified to know what he is talking about or not. This is done continually in the PT, GN, . etc. etc. BUT … let a man write a critical article about us and suddenly we are screaming “persecution!” Persecution!!!”
“So if it turns out that the church was wrong, then Dr. Hoeh’s academic tower of babylon will be undermined and wrecked, and Dr. Hoeh will have nothing to show for his efforts the past 25 years but a pile of ruins. Obviously Dr. Hoeh isn’t going to let that happen.”
“Without me, your nothing!”
Taking a break from “A Letter to Mother” series, we give you some insight’s into the man who wrote this 70 page letter we have been presenting. Those who knew the man marveled at his brilliance and sense of humor!
Many of his writing’s are as relevant today as when they were written.
“Mr. Grabbe specialized in the study of financial derivative instruments and published important pricing models for futures, forward contracts and options, especially in the foreign exchange (FX) markets.”
Chaos has a bad name in some parts. It was chaos that brought us the Trojan War (Robert Graves, The Greek Myths, chapter 159). Eris, goddess of chaos, upset at not being invited to the wedding of Peleus and Thetis, showed up anyway and rolled a golden apple marked “kalliste” (“for the prettiest one”) among the guests. Each of the goddesses Hera, Athena, and Aphrodite claimed the golden apple as her own. Zeus, no fool, appointed Paris, son of Priam, king of Troy, judge of the beauty contest. Hermes brought the goddesses to the mountain Ida, where Paris first tried to divide the apple among the goddesses, then made them swear they wouldn’t hold the decision against them. Hermes asked Paris if he needed the goddesses to undress to make his judgment, and he replied, Of course. Athena insisted Aphrodite remove her magic girdle, the sexy underwear that made everyone fall in love with her, and Aphrodite retorted Athena would have to remove her battle helmet, since she would look hideous without it.
As Paris examined the goddesses individually, Hera promised to make Paris the lord of Asia and the richest man alive, if she got the apple. Paris said he couldn’t be bribed. Athena promised to make Paris victorious in all his battles, and the wisest man alive. Paris said there was peace in these parts. Aphrodite stood so close to Paris he blushed, and not only urged him not to miss a detail of her lovely body, but said also that he was the handsomest man she had seen lately, and he deserved a woman as beautiful as she was. Had he heard about Helen, the wife of the king of Sparta? The goddess promised Paris she would make Helen fall in love with him. Naturally Paris gave the apple to Aphrodite, and Hera and Athena went off fuming to plot the destruction of Troy. That is, Aphrodite got the apple, and Paris got screwed.
While the Greeks had a specific goddess dedicated to Chaos, early religions gave chaos an even more fundamental role. In the Babylonian New Year festival, Marduk separated Tiamat, the dragon of chaos, from the forces of law and order. This primal division is seen in all early religions. Yearly homage was paid to the threat of chaos’s return. Traditional New Year festivals returned symbolically to primordial chaos through a deliberate disruption of civilized life. One shut down the temples, extinguished fires, had orgies and otherwise broke social norms. The dead mingled with the living; Afterward you purified yourself, reenacted the creation myth whereby the dragon of chaos was overthrown, and went back to normal. Everyone had fun, but afterward order was restored, and the implication was it was a good thing we had civilization, because otherwise people would always be putting out the fires and having orgies.
Around us in the world today we see the age-old battle between order and chaos. In the international sphere, the old order of communism has collapsed. In its place is a chaotic matrix of competing, breakaway states, wanting not only political freedom and at least a semi-market economy, but also their own money supplies and nuclear weapons, and in some cases a society with a single race, religion, or culture. Is this alarming or reassuring? We also have proclamations of a New World Order, on one hand, accompanied by the outbreak of sporadic wars and US bombing raids in Africa, Europe, and Asia, on the other.
In the domestic sphere we have grass roots political movements, such as the populist followers of H. Ross Perot challenging the old order imposed by the single-party Democratic- Republican monolith. We have a President who is making a mockery out of the office, and a Vice President who tells us we should not listen to any dissenting opinions with respect to global warming. Is this reassuring or alarming?
In the corporate-statist world of Japan we see the current demolition of the mythic pillars of Japanese society: the myth of high-growth, the myth of endless trust between the US and Japan, the myth of full employment, the myth that land and stock prices will always rise, and the myth that the Liberal Democratic Party will always remain in power. Is the shattering of these myths reassuring or alarming?
In fact, wherever we look, central command is losing control. Even in the sphere of the human mind we have increasing attention paid to cases of multiple personality. The most recent theories see human identity and the human ego as a network of cooperative subsystems, rather than a single entity. (Examples of viewpoint are found in Robert Ornstein, Multimind, and Michael Gazzanaga, The Social Brain.) If, as Carl Jung claimed, “our true religion is a monotheism of consciousness, a possession by it, coupled with a fanatical denial of the existence of fragmentary autonomous systems,” then it can be said that psychological polytheism is on the rise. Or, as some would say, mental chaos. Is this reassuring or alarming?
The average person, educated or not, is not comfortable with chaos. Faced with chaos, people begin talking about the fall of Rome, the end of time. Faced with chaos people begin to deny its existence, and present the alternative explanation that what appears as chaos is a hidden agenda of historical or prophetic forces that lie behind the apparent disorder. They begin talking about the “laws of history” or proclaiming that “God has a hidden plan”. The creation, Genesis, was preceded by chaos (tohu-va- bohu), and the New World Order (the millennium), it is claimed, will be preceded by pre-ordained apocalyptic chaos. In this view of things, chaos is just part of a master agenda. Well, is it really the case there is a hidden plan, or does the goddess Eris have a non- hidden non-plan? Will there be a Thousand Year Reign of the Messiah, or the Thousand Year Reich of Adolph Hitler, or are these one and the same?
People are so uncomfortable with chaos, in fact, that Newtonian science as interpreted by Laplace and others saw the underlying reality of the world as deterministic. If you knew the initial conditions you could predict the future far in advance. With a steady hand and the right cue tip, you could run the table in pool. Then came quantum mechanics, with uncertainty and indeterminism, which even Einstein refused to accept, saying “God doesn’t play dice.” Philosophically, Einstein couldn’t believe in a universe with a sense of whimsy. He was afraid of the threatened return of chaos, preferring to believe for every effect there was a cause. A consequence of this was the notion that if you could control the cause, you could control the effect.
The modern proponents of law and order don’t stop with the assertion that for every effect, there is a cause. And they also assert they “know” the cause. We see this attitude reflected by social problem solvers, who proclaimed: “The cause of famine in Ethiopia is lack of food in Ethiopia.” So we had rock crusades to feed the starving Ethiopians and ignored the role of the Ethiopian government. Other asserted: “The case of drug abuse is the presence of drugs,” so they enacted a war on certain drugs which drove up their price, drove up the profit margins available to those who dealt in prohibited drugs, and created a criminal subclass who benefited from the prohibition. Psychologists assert: “The reason this person is this way is because such-and-such happened in childhood, with parents, or siblings, or whatever.” So any evidence of abuse, trauma, or childhood molestation–which over time should assume a trivial role in one’s life–are given infinite power by the financial needs of the psychotherapy business.
You may respond: “Well, but these were just misidentified causes; there really is a cause.” Maybe so, and maybe not. Whatever story you tell yourself, you can’t escape the fact that to you personally “the future is a blinding mirage” (Stephen Vizinczey, The Rules of Chaos). You can’t see the future precisely because you don’t really know what’s causing it. The myth of causality denies the role of Eris. Science eventually had to acknowledge the demon of serendipity, but not everyone is happy with that fact. The political world, in the cause-and-effect marketing and sales profession, has a vested interest in denying its existence.
In philosophy or religion there are three principal schools of thought (in a classification I’ll use here). Each school is distinguished by its basic philosophical outlook on life. The First School sees the universe as indifferent to humanity’s joys or sufferings, and accepts chaos as a principle of restoring balance. The Second School sees humanity as burdened down with suffering, guilt, desire, and sin, and equates chaos with punishment or broken law. The Third School considers chaos an integral part of creativity, freedom, and growth.
Too much law and order brings its opposite. Attempts to create World Government will lead to total anarchy. What are some possible examples?
The precepts of the first school find expression in a number of Oriental philosophies. In the view of this school, what happens in the universe is a fact, and does not merit the labels of “good” or “bad”, or human reactions of sympathy or hatred. Effort to control or alter the course of macro events (as opposed to events in ones personal life) is wasted. One should cultivate detachment and contemplation, and learn elasticity, learn to go with the universal flow of events. This flow tends toward a balance. This view finds expression in the Tao Teh King:
The more prohibitions you have,
the less virtuous people will be
The more weapons you have,
the less secure people will be.
The more subsidies you have,
the less self-reliant people will be.
Therefore the Master says:
I let go of the law,
and people become honest.
I let go of economics,
and people become prosperous.
I let go of religion,
and people become serene.
I let go of all desire for the common good,
and the good becomes common as grass.
(Chapter 57, Stephen Mitchell translation.)
You don’t fight chaos any more than you fight evil. “Give evil nothing to oppose, and it will disappear by itself” (Tao Teh King, Chapter 60). Or as Jack Kerouac said in Dr. Sax: “The universe disposes of its own evil.” Again the reason is a principal of balance: You are controlled by what you love and what you hate. But hate is the stronger emotion. Those who fight evil necessarily take on the characteristics of the enemy and become evil themselves. Organized sin and organized sin-fighting are two sides of the same corporate coin.
In the broadest sense, this approach a) asserts society is defective, and then b) tells us the reason it’s bad is because we’ve done wrong by our lawless actions. This is the view often presented by the front page of any major newspaper. It’s a fundamental belief in Western civilization.
In early Judaism and fundamentalist Christianity, evil is everywhere and it must be resisted. There is no joy or pleasure without its hidden bad side. God is usually angry and has to be propitiated by sacrifice and blood. The days of Noah ended in a flood. Sodom and Gomorra got atomized. Now, today, it’s the End Time and the wickedness of the earth will be smitten with the sword of Jesus or some other Messiah whose return is imminent.
In this context, chaos is punishment from heaven. Or chaos is a natural degenerate tendency which must be alertly resisted. In the Old Testament Book of Judges, a work of propaganda for the monarchy, it is stated more than once: “In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes” (Judg. 17:6; 21:25). Doing what appeals to you was not considered a good idea, because, as Jeremiah reminds us “The heart [of man] is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked” (Jer. 17:9).
And in the New Testament, the rabbinical lawyer Paul says “by the law is the knowledge of sin” (Rom. 3:20), and elsewhere is written, “Whososever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.” (1 John 3:4). And, naturally, “the wages of sin is death” (Rom. 6:23).
New age views of karma are similar. If you are bad, as somehow defined, you built up bad karma (New Age view), or else God later burns you with fire (fundamentalist Christian view). For good deeds, you get good karma or treasures in heaven. It’s basically an accountant’s view of the world. Someone’s keeping a balance sheet of all your actions, and toting up debits or credits. Of course, some religions allow you to wipe the slate clean in one fell swoop, say by baptism, or an act of contrition, which is sort of like declaring bankruptcy and getting relief from all your creditors. But that’s only allowed because there has already been a blood sacrifice in your place. Jesus or Mithra or one of the other Saviors has already paid the price. But even so, old Santa Claus is up there somewhere checking who’s naughty or nice.
What is fundamental about this approach is not the specific solution to sin, or approach to salvation, but the general pessimistic outlook on the ordinary flow of life. The first Noble Truth of Buddha was that “Life is Sorrow”. In the view of Schopenhauer, Life is Evil, and he says “Every great pain, whether physical or spiritual, declares what we deserve; for it could not come to us if we did not deserve it” (The World as Will and Representation). Also in the Second School bin of philosophy can be added Freud, with his Death Wish and the image of the unconscious as a murky swamp of monsters. Psychiatry in some interpretations sees the fearful dragon of chaos, Tiamat, lurking down below the civilized veneer of the human cortex.
The liberal’s preoccupation with social “problems” and the Club of Rome’s obsession with entropy are essentially expressions of the Second School view. Change, the fundamental motion of the universe, is bad. If a business goes broke, it’s never viewed as a source of creativity, freeing up resources and bringing about necessary changes. It’s just more unemployment. The unemployment-inflation tradeoff as seen by Sixties Keynesian macroeconomics is in the Second School spirit. These endemic evils must be propitiated by the watchful Priests of Fiscal Policy and the Federal Reserve, and you can only reduce one by increasing the other. This view refuses to acknowledge that one of the positive roles of the Market is as a job destroyer as well as a job creator.
More generally, the second school has generated whole industries of “problem solvers”— politicians, bureaucrats, demagogues, counselors, and charity workers who have found the way to power, fame, and wealth lies in championing causes and mucking about in other people’s lives. Whatever their motivations, they operate as parasites and vampires who are healthy only when others are sick, whose well-being increases in direct proportion to other people’s misery, and whose method of operation is to give the appearance of working on the problems of others. Of course if the problems they champion were actually solved, they would be out of a job. Hence they are really interested in the process of “solving” problems–not in actual solutions. They create chaos and destruction under the pretense of chaos control and elimination.
You find this view in a few of the ancient Greek writers, and more recently in Nietzsche. Nietzsche says: “One must still have chaos in one to give birth to a dancing star.” The first fundamental point of view here is: Existence is pure joy. If you don’t see that, your perception is wrong. And we are not talking about Mary Baker Eddy Christian Science denial of the facts. In this approach you are supposed to learn to alchemically transmute sorrow into joy, chaos into art. You exult in the random give and take of the hard knocks of life. It’s a daily feast. Every phenomenon is an Act of Love. Every experience, however serendipitous, is necessary, is a sacrament, is a means of growth.
“Saying Yes to life even in its strangest and hardest problems, the will to life rejoicing over its own inexhaustibility even in the very sacrifice of its highest types–that is what I called Dionysian, that is what I guessed to be the bridge to the psychology of the tragic poet. Not in order to be liberated from terror and pity, not in order to purge oneself of a dangerous affect by its vehement discharge– Aristotle understood it that way [as do the Freudians who think one deals with ones neuroses through one’s art, a point of view which Nietzsche is here explicitly rejecting]–but in order to be oneself the eternal order of becoming, beyond all terror and pity–that joy which included even joy in destroying.” (Twilight of the Idols).
It is an approach centered in the here and now. You cannot foresee the future, so you must look at the present. But because “nothing is certain, nothing is impossible” (Rules of Chaos). You are free and nobody belongs to you. In the opening paragraphs of Tropic of Cancer, Henry Miller says: “It is now the fall of my second year in Paris. I was sent here for a reason I have not yet been able to fathom. I have no money, no resources, no hopes. I am the happiest man alive.”
Your first responsibility is to take care of yourself, so you won’t be a burden to other people. If you don’t do at least that, how can you be so arrogant as to think you can help others? You make progress by adapting to your own nature. In Rabelais’ Gargantua the Abbey of Theleme had the motto: Fay ce que vouldras, or “Do as you will.” Rabelais (unlike the Book of Judges) treats this in a very positive light. The implication is: Don’t go seeking after some ideal far removed from your own needs. Don’t get involved in some crusade to save the human race–because you falsely think that is the noble thing to do–when what you may really want to do, if you are honest with yourself, is to stay home, grow vegetables, and sell them in a roadside market. (Growing vegetables is, after all, real growth–more so than some New Age conceptions.) You have no obligation under the sun other than to discover your real needs, to fulfill them, and to rejoice in doing so.
In this approach you give other people the right to make their own choices, but you also hold them responsible for the consequences. Most social “problems”, after all, are a function of the choices people make, and are therefore insolvable in principle, except by coercion. One is not under any obligation to make up for the effects of other people’s decisions. If, for example, people (poor or rich, educated or not) have children they can’t care for or feed, one has no responsibility to make up for their negligence or to take on one’s own shoulders responsibility for the consequent suffering. You can, if you wish, if you want to become a martyr. If you are looking to become a martyr, the world will gladly oblige, and then calmly carry on as before, the “problems” unaltered.
One may, of course, choose to help the rest of the world to the extent that one is able, assuming one knows how. But it is a choice, not an obligation. Modern political correctness and prostituted religion have tried to turn all of what used to be considered virtues into social obligations. Not that anyone is expected to really practice what they preach; rather it is intended they feel guilty for not doing so, and once the guilt trip is underway, their behavior can be manipulated for political purposes.
What would, after all, be left for social workers to do if all social problems were solved? One would still need challenges, so presumably people would devote themselves to creative and artistic tasks. One would still need chaos. One would still need Eris rolling golden apples.
In the revelation given to Greg Hill and Kerry Thornley, authors of Principia Discordia, or How I Found Goddess and What I Did to Her When I Found Her, the goddess Eris (Roman Discordia) says: “I am chaos. I am the substance from which your artists and scientists build rhythms. I am the spirit with which your children and clowns laugh in happy anarchy. I am chaos. I am alive, and I tell you that you are free.”
Today, in Aspen, Eris says: I am chaos. I am alive, and I tell you that you are free.
J. Orlin Grabbe
1275 Terminal Way, Suite E
Reno, NV 89502
More on the Chaos theory can be found HERE
“Despite everything we have said, people really did set their hearts on 1972 being the end of the Work. Now that January 7, 1972 is past, people are wondering how much time is left. People are questioning the validity of Mr. Armstrong’s repeated emphasis on “the gun lap”, “the final phase of the “work”, “the last push”, etc. They are asking, “Are we really in the gun Lap?”, “Is this really the final phase of the Work?” “What does Mr. Armstrong mean when he says the Work is beginning all over again?”
“There is no solace above or below, only us…”
“Many say they are aware that Mr .Gotoh
sets up Mr. Armstrong’s appointments with world leaders, and they feel it is not really true when Mr. Armstrong says he has never sought to meet with any of them.”
“Some ask why Mr. Armstrong implies that these leaders are seeking an audience with him.”
“Some feel Mr. Armstrong is stretching the point when he makes such statements as the Ambassador College Press is the second biggest press west of Chicago [it’s not]…”
“People have characterized the social structure at Headquarters as almost a caste system which has its ‘elite’. They say ‘the elite’ is comprised’ of all the Evangelists, some Pastors, and some few favored top men…”
I. “Political problems. Despite all the co-worker letters, the Worldwide Church of God News, the announcements in church, etc., the work is NOT going forward in greater power and greater harmony than ever before. This is pure propaganda.”
“For those of us climbing to the top of the food chain, there can be no mercy. There is but one rule: hunt or be hunted.”
“The point is, mother is not that scriptural reasons induced us to change our position regrading church authority, or to modify our position, nor was it the case that we were uncertain about church authority and needed to study, it further and then financially came to “see” the truth–all that had nothing to do with it. On one hand, HWA was ABSOLUTELY DOGMATICALLY CERTAIN that church government was the image of the Beast; and then later, he was JUST AS ABSOLUTELY DOGMATICALLY CERTAIN that church government was one of the most important truths God had revealed to us.”
1. impious utterance or action concerning God or sacred things.
a. an act of cursing or reviling God.
3. Theology. The crime of assuming to oneself the rights or qualities of God.
4. irreverent behavior toward anything held sacred, priceless, etc.:
Now, what’s the difference between HWA and Frank Underwood?
“This strange (ludicrous!) circumstance is the logical (albeit pharisaical) result of our present concept of completely differentiating “porneia from “moicheia”.
Be sure to click on the document to enlarge.
“Dr. Earnest Martin, until recently the Chairman of the Deparment of Theology at the Pasadena campus,
feels quite sure he can totally disprove the theory. Gunar Freiburgs, presently Chairman of that department, feels the same. I have not
studied the history, but know from a Biblical point of view it is totally erroneous. More on this later…”
The Painful Truth has recently acquired a letter that James Orlin Grabbe had wrote to his mother concerning the Worldwide Church of God and the various characters within. This seventy page letter was written in either 1973 or 1974. There is some confusion as to the exact date.
Orlin Grabbe was born October 8, 1947, in Hale County, Texas, and grew up on a farm in Briscoe County in the Texas panhandle. He showed great academic prowess in his youth and in response, he was invited to participate in nationwide, specialized education in mathematics. Two of his brothers also achieved doctorates and became professors. His brother Lester was a professor of theology at the University of Hull in England, while his brother Crockett was a professor of physics at the University of Iowa.
In the fall of 1966, Grabbe joined an older brother at the Worldwide Church of God‘s Ambassador College, based in Pasadena, California. He graduated in 1970 and served on the teaching staff until 1973. During this time, he was the editor of the student newspaper. In his memoir, written later in his life, he described not only his own experiences and thought processes, but also the atmosphere that permeated the college, its students, and the organization as a whole.
After leaving Ambassador, Grabbe enrolled at the University of California, Berkeley, to pursue his interests in research and science, with an emphasis in mathematics. In 1976, he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics. He continued his education at Harvard University where he was awarded a Ph.D. in economics in 1981.
If your not familiar with Mr. Grabbe, and his contributions, go HERE.
And yes, he even had a part in the movie, “Ruby Ridge” staring Randy Quaid, Laura Dern, Kirsten Dunst.
His website from ten years ago can be found HERE.
Due to file size, the Painful Truth will present this letter as png picture files, instead of pdf files for the time being. We will post one big pdf file when this series is complete.
Ambassador Report Announcement:
Five original publishers/editors of Ambassador Report (AR) are holding an all-day event at The Orleans Hotel in Las Vegas, March 16, 2017. The event will be held on the day the combined three-campus Ambassador College Reunion ends. For the first time the surviving principals of the AR will reveal the behind-the-scenes untold inside story of the making of the AR. For information about attending click HERE.
We’ve decided to do something new here, and, in the honor of Gavin Rumney and to help maintain the legacy of the Watchdog Site, Ambassador Watch, we plan to institute review of The Journal when it comes out. And it’s come out: This time it’s from the last day of December, 2016 which makes it the New Year’s Eve issue.
Yes, those wily Armstrongist ministers who try to label us here at The Painful Truth as ‘watchdogs’ don’t seem to realize that we are a lot more than that and we have a bit of a bite to us, but thanks for being disingenuous to seem, oh, so smarmy, while really trying to promote your own aggressive subversive agenda to proselytize without getting caught at it. We know what you really are:
Yes, there has been this naive optimism that a new day is dawning and that the ministers of the sects of the Cult of Herbert Armstrong Mafia are kinder, gentler and more reasonable now — making admissions at The Journal, for example, exposing some negatives about Armstrongism, such as that article by David Havir demonstrating that Herbert Armstrong was no servant leader, painting him as aggressive abuser. The 1%ers are now posting on various post Armstrongist blogs, such as Banned! and the now defunct Ambassador Watch, attempting to persuade us that they have changed and it is a new world now. Indeed, they are popping up seemingly everywhere attempting to show that they have indeed entered into the 21st Century of gently agreeing to disagree.
Ah, but those of us here at The Painful Truth have taken heed that we be not deceived, for we know the word of Robert Jackall in Moral Mazes aptly describes what is represented by this list of Armstrongist publications:
From the standpoint of public relations, the journalistic ideology closely resembles the social outlook of most college seniors — a vague but pious middle-class liberalism, a mildly critical stance toward their fathers in particular and authorities in general; a maudlin of championship of the poor and the underclass; and especially the doctrine of tolerance, open-mindedness, and balance. In fact, public relations people feel, the news media are also constructing reality. They are always looking for a “fresh” and exciting angle; they have an unerring instinct for the sentimental that expresses itself in a preference for “human interest” rather than substance; and they arrange facts in a way that purports to convey “truth,” but is in fact simply another story. In reality, news is entertainment. And, despite the public’s acceptance of journalistic ideologies, most of the public watch or read news not to be informed or to learn the “truth,” but precisely to be entertained. There is no intrinsic reason, therefore, why the constructions of reality by public relations specialists should be thought of as any different from those of any group in the business of telling stories to the public. Everyone is telling stories and everyone has a story to tell. Public relations men and women are simply storytellers with a purpose in the free market of ideas, advocates of a certain point of view in the court of public opinion. Since any notion of truth is irrelevant or refers to at best what is perceived, persuasion of various sorts becomes everything.
And there it is. Armstrongism isn’t about truth; it is simply about manipulating perceptions to evoke responses to their story telling. Herbert Armstrong was an ad copy writer, after all. As such, he lined up some facts, threw in some colorful descriptions and weaved his fictional stories. The booklets in the slides presentation above is representative of this magical world of the ‘magic lantern’, creating illusions illustrating imaginary constructs of perceived ‘reality’. There is neither truth nor reality in any of it. It is all fake.
Moreover, it isn’t just about Herbert Armstrong and his ‘public relations’ advertising hirelings, it is also about The Journal, which is exposed for what it is in the brief description given by Robert Jackal; to wit: the pursuit of a “fresh” and exciting angle with an unerring instinct for the sentimental that expresses itself in a preference for “human interest” rather than substance; and the facts are arranged in a way that purports to convey “truth,” but is in fact simply another story — in reality, it is merely infotainment. The editor of The Journal reveals his true self when he speaks of the doctrine of tolerance, open-mindedness, and balance — while secretly harboring contempt for the “farmer theologians” who deign to advertise in its pages.
Moral Mazes has framed it and nailed it in the landscape of the church cult corporate of lies, deceits, conceits, fiction, fantasy — all parading as religious truth — which, if it be told, can be demonstrated as pure rubbish if you but stand back and look at the chaotic mess it represents.
Dr. James Milam, in his book, Ending the Drug Addiction Pandemic: Discovering the Liberating Truth, in Chapter 2: Core Evidence (page 17), says:
Within the big lie all of the component falsehoods have been carefully crafted to support each other in concealing the whole truth. To assemble the abundance of decisive scientific and clinical evidence comprising the biogenic paradigm it is necessary to identify, define, and disentangle each piece of the truth from the corresponding part of the shroud of disinformation that has so carefully hidden for so long. Surrounded by the support of the others each falsehood has become an inarguable given truth. It is therefor necessary to confront and discredit them one by one until the whole fabric of disinformation is disposed of.
He adds this sentence in Chapter 3: The Language of Denial (page 34):
The familiar comes to seem normal and every big lie develops its own familiar language of deception that conceals the truth while purporting to represent it.
In the end, Armstrongism promises the truth and fails to deliver. What it delivers instead is empty promises which can never be fulfilled.
The Journal is particularly disingenuous, managing to make the trashy low rent apartment look every bit like the gleaming high end Executive Suite on the top floor of a prestigious upscale condo; that talent to make a toxic dump site look pristine like the morning after being covered in freshly fallen snow: Yes, the redactions and deliberate excluded news makes us all believe that Armstrongism is a near utopia with artifice uplifting what would normally be quite disturbing. An exclusion here, a modification there — it’s all better. It’s partly in the well-crafted emphasis on what the staff there wants us to see — just like the Magic Lantern outlined in Moral Mazes. Never mind the stuff behind the curtains and in the smoke-filled trashy store room doubling as a staff lounge, which, if you could get a look, might have half-empty boxes of cold left-over pizza and littered with empty beer bottles.
This issue of The Journal is no different, and, in fact, becomes representative.
It starts off page one with the announcement of two deaths in The Journal ‘family’: Gavin Rumney and Ken Wesby. Less than a quarter page is dedicated to Gavin Rumney, plus a short obituary later on in the obituary section. Not only does Ken Wesby get about a third of a page, but his life and experiences are covered in depth on Page 1, Page 2, Page 3, Page 4, Page 14, Page 15 and Page 16. Not only that, but Gavin’s picture is in black and white while Ken has a color picture (with his wife) (that Dixon Cartwright took). And it’s BIGGER! Dixie only mentioned Otagosh, conveniently forgetting about Ambassador Watch and Missing Dimension [which The Painful Truth is hosting as a legacy], while the article goes on and on and on and on about Ken Wesby. OK, sure: The guy was a minister and he rebelled and started his own cult sect, just like something the other 700+ sects have done. Sure, the split was interesting on its own right, not unlike reading the first three Ambassador Report Magazines in color, but then, on the other hand, The Journal pretty much did not pay any mind to him during his life time, which pretty much answers the question, “Hey, what do I have to do to get noticed around here? Die?!!”.
Given that The Journal is all about presenting events within the Armstrongist ‘community’ (if that’s what you want to call it) in the best possible light to keep the social groups together, we aren’t a bit surprised by the fact that Dixon Cartwright never mentioned anything about the content of Otagosh (although he felt free to come there and give flaming vents in his special borderline mental disorder way); to wit: Gavin Rumney absolutely nailed both Armstrongism and the Grace Community International, but that isn’t all — he spoke of Protestant Religious dichotomies and aberrations as well and there is a certain Lutheran Synod worse off for it. Moreover, he tackled many uncomfortable religious topics with aplomb, scuttling the Apostle Paul and providing convincing evidence that the Bible isn’t to be taken so seriously that it is an Authority — the entries he presented showed that much of the Bible is actually forged and should not be taken at face value. This, is, of course, something that would be inimitable to The Journal careful alignment of positioned ‘facts’ to lead people to the conclusion that it’s rainbows and lollipops while the Armstrongists hold hands singing Kumbaya. Of course, occasionally they feature the clouds and suggest that it might rain, but that’s only for Category 5 Hurricanes. They handle a few controversial items, but always in the framework of a discussion where all opinions should be respected as valid. Dixon Cartwright avowed that he didn’t believe in British Israelism on Otagosh, but Oh Gosh, it’s a harmless belief that keeps the social groups together (while mentioning not ONE thing about the rampant boozing alcoholism). No, The Journal paid a little respect to Gavin Rumney. It paid a LOT of respect to Ken Wesby.
Of course, there’s the insane advertisements in The Journal that are so daft, it makes the Magazine of Science Fiction and Fantasy look like daily life reality and we will only mention one of them of note:
This is the University which has a course of British Israelism in it’s Course Prospectus For THL 215: The Lost Tribes of Israel in History and Prophecy. The instructor for this class is Dr. Douglas Winnail. We wonder if it will be offered. There seems to be neither hide nor hair of him recently over at the Living Church of God. You’d expect The Journal to tell us what has happened to him, where he is and what he is doing, seeing as how they claim to present us with “News of the Churches of God”. It’s funny though, we don’t see much news about the Church of God Seventh Day and don’t see any for the Seventh Day Church of God, Caldwell, Idaho, nor cover their Feast of Tabernacles in Fruitland, Washington. Not ‘churchy’ enough, we guess. Anyway, The Journal doesn’t seem to even come close to fulfilling its empty promise on its masthead.
Here’s a quick note from note from David Antion on Page 1 and 2 and 3: Get something new for the Last Great Day! It’s a new tradition he wants to start:
Dr. Antion explained that the something new does not have to be an entirely new outfit but simply a new watch, shirt, socks, scarf, tie or accessory.
Dandy. You have extra second tithe. Get something new. Something to wear. Bling. His reasoning is:
in recognition of his or her new life in Christ and in anticipation of the new heavens and new earth
Almost all New Covenanty, but still buried in the Olde Testament Christianity rituals of Bronze Age Religion (mentioned a lot at Otagosh). And while you are at it, buy a photo album (with a camera, if you don’t have one, you know, one that has the Herbert Armstrong ‘quality’) to put pictures of you and your family in so that in your children’s old age when Christ hasn’t returned yet, they can remember all the ‘good times’ when they had to balance the Feast celebration, Y.O.U. activities (if any), eating and drinking (non alcoholic if they are underage) with coping with a boatload of homework and class assignment (missed chemistry labs can be killer). Hopefully, they won’t be too bitter and burn the album at some point out of spite.
And finally, we’ll stop with David Havir’s article on page three about how God just doesn’t seem to make up His mind on whether to micromanage civil leaders or not and makes the point that we should “be skeptical of dogmatic proclaimers of their own truth”. That’s good advice, particularly if you believe what Gavin Rumney researched on Otagosh to show that the dogmatic proclamations of Scripture may have a lot less authority than any Bible believer previously thought. At this point, some of us aren’t quite convinced that the Book of Daniel is so much prophecy as history (and maybe not that accurate history either), written after the time the supposed prophecies came to pass. Ask Dennis Diehl, he’ll give you straight scoop on it.
That’s about as much as we have the stomach for, seeing as how the antacid is beginning to wear off, meandering through the insanity of a ‘newspaper’ being a palliative sop apologetic vehicle for a brain dead cult.
We’ll try to do this again each time a new issue comes out. We’re just so sure, that, as always, it will be so edifying with infotainment.
Peter Debruge, Chief Film Critic for Variety has this to say in his review of the Science Fiction Movie, Garm Wars: The Last Druid:
On a planet no one’s ever heard of, three species no one cares about are caught in a genocidal battle for reasons no one understands. These are the so-called “Garm Wars,” a mind-numbing, semi-animated hybrid that blends greenscreen-heavy live-action footage with hyper-detailed yet minimally engaging computer-generated visuals guaranteed to bore all but “Ghost in the Shell” director Mamoru Oshii’s most dedicated fans. Drunk on the needlessly complicated mythology of its unrelatable universe, this talky (to the point of impenetrable) Canadian-made curiosity plays like an elaborate sci-fi screensaver, hi-res enough for theatrical exhibition, but far too stultifying to support it.
He ends with this:
In the end, Khara is less concerned with protecting the Druid than in getting answers — a sentiment audiences will certainly share. Before her quest is done, Khara will convince Wydd to spill secrets meant to enlighten, but every word out of his mouth merely serves to make things more confusing. Though it couldn’t have been Oshii’s intention, to watch is to comprehend how it feels to desperately crave peace — the kind that can only be found when the credits roll and the house lights come up.
Now you may wonder what this has to do with The Painful Truth and Armstrongism and we’re coming to that. We are about to embark on a wondrous journey of non-revelation that will leave you with the very same sentiment — “to watch is to comprehend how it feels to desperately crave peace — the kind that can only be found when the credits roll and the house lights come up”.
We are talking, of course, about the silly idea that the Druids are British-Israelites. “What!”, you say. After all this has to be the MOST stupid idea ever. If you think that, prepare to be surprised and appalled by none other than the Philadelpha Church of God’s moron emeritus, Brad MacDonald:
It’s hard to imagine just how wrong anyone could get this topic. The article is headache inducing, particularly since our readership is more than a bit familiar that we’ve thoroughly debunked British Israelism, but Brad takes the alternative world science fiction to a whole new level of idiocy. Redfox has an article on Living Armstrongism containing the Overview of the October 2014 Philadelphia Trumpet mentioning the Brad MacDonald article. Here are a few banners in the article:
For those of you who contest that the Bible can provide insight into the identity of nations and international relations, go right on and keep contesting it. You are on solid ground. The non facts (outright lies) in The United States and Britain in Prophecy are invalidated by science, invalidated by rational argumentation and certainly completely debunked by objective empirical evidence.
Really, really tough to prove. There aren’t many examples of any sort of written documentation from the Druids. It’s pretty clear, this is just plain made up out of thin air. Pretty much everything in their booklet and in the article are nothing more than ox dung.
This nonsense doesn’t just stop with the Philadelphia Church of God, over at the Cry Aloud Cybermagazine, there’s a preposterous article, Joshua is Hu Gadarn who started the Druids in Britain and Ireland. Shame on him. This is another example of collecting dubious sources and amalgamating them in creatives and the justifying one of the premises with The Compendium of World History, Volume II by ‘Dr.’ Herman L. Hoeh. It adds insult to injury with a sly side reference to the persecution of non Jewish groups in Europe being persecuted for keeping the Sabbath from the First Century through the Middle Ages. The idea is nonsense and we’ve shown before that the Waldensians never kept the Sabbath, no matter how much Ellen G. White may have insisted they did. Over at the PreteristArchive.com website in the article Why British Israelism is Wrong by the Adelaide Revival Center, the following points were made:
The Encyclopedia Britannica says, “The theory [of British-Israelism] … rests on premises which are deemed by scholars – both theological and anthropological – to be utterly unsound”.
Morris Silverman, Assistant Professor of History at Yeshiva University, New York, agreed. In Time magazine, he noted, “The British-Israel theory is complete nonsense, as anyone with the slightest knowledge of history, anthropology or philology can tell”.
So, if the British are not lost Israelites, then who are they? I had the opportunity of listening to Adelaide English History lecturer, Marcia Nichol, discuss this. According to her, the first Celtic people were not Israelites, but could be traced to a group known as the ‘Urn-Field People’, or ‘Proto-Celts’. They were called ‘Urn-Field People’ because they cremated their dead and placed them in distinctive urn cemeteries. They were a Northern European people who began to appear from about 1300 B.C.E., and spoke a form of Celtic. Their Anglo-Saxon counterparts were descended from a central Asian plains culture who later migrated along the same route as the Beaker people, because of food shortages. They were around long before Assyrians took the Israelites captive!
But what about the ancient writings? True, some point to early English legends to show that Israelites came to Britain. But this is quite deceptive. The legends contain little, if any, real history. Sometimes, they are even misquoted to prove the British-Israel viewpoint! Irish Historian Sean O’Faolain says, “We do not read the literature as it was originally created. The Christian scribes and the patriotic ficto-historians have freely altered the original records and the traditional lore to suit their own ends … Myth and history, dreams and facts, are forever inextricably commingled”. Because of this, James Campbell, in his book The Anglo-Saxons, describes the early British legends as “largely romance”. So, these spurious texts cannot prove British-Israelism.
As for the true destiny of the Israelites, the inspired writings are our best source. British-Israelites distinguish between the ‘Jews’ and ‘Israelites’ – and this has some basis. Before the captivities of the tribes, Israel and Judah were once united. Saul, in about 1117 B.C.E. ruled over a ‘united’ kingdom of Israel and Judah (1Samuel 8:4-9). But In about 998 B.C.E., the kingdom was split in two after the death of Solomon. Judah supported King Rehoboam, and Israel supported Jeroboam (1Kings 11:29-37).
The real fate of many of these Israelites was probably death….
Brothers supposedly “authored the “British Israel” movement that taught that the scattered and lost 10 families of Israel had journeyed northward, and through migrations had settled in northwestern Europe and particularly the United Kingdom.”
However the facts go much deeper, with a connection to the Druids. Professor Stuart Piggot writes in ‘The Druids” of the influence of Rowland Jones who saw Cabalistic teaching in the words and syllables of the Druids. Professor Piggot states, “of Rowland Jones, it has been written”:
“…through his influence on…William Owen Pughe… he helped to pollute the stream of Welsh scholarship throughout the nineteenth century…The Druids in their latter days begin to move away from scholarship, however eccentric, and offer themselves as symbols within a non-rational universe…Pughe was one of the Twenty-four Elders appointed by Joanna Southcott, the religious maniac, together with the engraver William Sharp, who had previously been a follower of Richard Brothers…Both Sharp and Pughe were friends of William Blake, and Robert Southey wrote of Pughe, ‘Poor Owen found everything he wished to find in the Bardic system, and there he found Blake’s notions, and thus Blake and his wife were persuaded that his dreams were old patriarchal truths, long forgotten and now re-revealed.”
“…’the antiquities of every Nation under Heaven’, Blake was to write, ‘is no less sacred than that of the Jews. They are the same thing, as Jacob Bryant and all the antiquaries have proved. ‘ Though the Druids change their character as Blake’s own vision changed during the writings of the Prophetic Books between 1797 and 1804, they have their apotheosis in the context of his revolutionary discovery that Britain was the original Holy Land, and Jerusalem not so far from Primrose Hill…”
“The Druids are the priests, lawgivers, philosophers and mathematicians of Urizen, but by Jerusalem, “All things Begin & End in Albion’s Ancient Druid Rocky Shore”…’Was Britain the Primitive Seat of Patriarchal Religion?’ Blake asked, and straightway gave his answer: Patriarchal Druids originated in Britain and spread their doctrine far and wide, even to the oak-groves on the Plain of Mamre. ‘Your Ancestors,’ he told his readers, ‘derived their origin from Abraham, Heber, Shem and Noah, who were Druids, as the Druid Temples (which are Patriarchal Pillars and Oak Groves) over the whole Earth to witness to this day.’ And in a single phrase Blake takes us, and the Druids, back to a familiar landscape. ‘The Nature of my Work, ‘ he wrote, ‘is Visionary or Imaginative; it is an endeavour to Restore what the Ancients call’d the Golden Age.’”.
The history of the Druids provides some of the more notable names involved in the movement, along with some of it’s more aberrant factions and teachings.
“…1781, a ‘secret society’, The Order of the Ancient Druids, had been set up in London by Henry Hurle…on Garlick Hill in the city, on lines doubtless inspired by Freemasonry…In 1833 the Order split…majority became ‘The United Ancient Order of the Druids.’ This, with …numerous daughter Orders, flourishes as a Friendly Society, but the rump of the 1833 split also contained its original mystic lines…Albion Lodge of the Ancient Order of Druids of Oxford (1908) it accepted as an initiate the young Winston Churchill at a ceremony in Blenheim Park…. Henry Hurles original Order…The British Circle of the Universal Bond—split and formed The Order of the Bards, Ovates and Druids in 1963—meet on Tower Hill in London. 1717 members of Druids include John Toland, William Stukeley, Lord Winchilsea and William Blake. Chief druid from 1909 to 1946 –George Watson Macgregor Reid, friend of Bernard Shaw…”.
“A man named Owen Morgan or Morien around the 1920’s in England managed to reconcile his pious Welsh Calvinistic Methodism with Druidism even though it meant equating Taliesin with Jesus Christ.–his writings such things as Phallic worship to the Holy Greal, by way of Druidic Mysteries.”
OK. We give up. Let them have it their way: The Druids were British Israelites descended from the Lost Tribes of Israel. They embraced the religion of Reheboam. Fine. Read Hosea. Dare you. It’s about Ephraim: Boozing alcoholics, with a lot of objectionable practices. If you count them as Druids, you can add human sacrifice to that.
So go ahead.
There’s one trade-off, though. Read Revelation 7:5-8. Note that Manasses and Joseph are mentioned among the tribes that are sealed, but there is no mention of Ephraim [along with no mention of Dan]. Ephraim is one of the two lost tribes of Israel. There is no sealing and likely there is to be no salvation for them. They are gone for good by the time we get through to the Great Tribulation.
So if you want to claim an heritage of Ephraim as a Lost Tribe of Israel, be aware that God wasn’t much happy with Ephraim even before the end of the Old Testament and having your ancestors practicing human sacrifice is a less than noble heritage. In the end, there won’t be salvation and redemption as a tribe (all of this is nonsense of course because Britain isn’t Ephraim, but just for argument’s sake…). You are so screwed.
If that’s what you want to believe, you can have it. It’s the worst science fiction ever. It’s wrong of course, and your opinion that the United States and British Commonwealth are descended from Lost Tribes of Israel is so wrong in so many ways, but you are welcome to be stupid and hold to an unworkable belief system that will lead you absolutely nowhere you want to go.
If you have been paying any attention at all, you’ll have noticed that the claim of Druid British Israelism is that the Druids went to Mesopotamia to Abraham and that Abraham was a Druid Priest. This would certainly explain the religion of the Israelites, passed from Abraham, Isaac and Jacob — it was the celebration of the Ancient Pagan Druid’s Religion, replete with the Feast of Tabernacles, the keeping of the Sabbath and the Calendar. It seems reasonable that Stonehenge was built to ascertain the signs and wonders in the heavens so that the British Hebrew festivals could be kept in their proper times, based on moon phases, Solstices and the Equinoxes. Note that through the ages that not just Abraham, but evidently such luminaries as Winston Churchill and Pat Robertson can claim a Druidic connection. Since Glenn Beck believes in British Israelism, we can only assume that he is of the Druids as well (based on Occam’s Razor that the most simplistic of two ideas is the most likely to survive — and it’s likely that Occam was also a Druid). We’d like to think so. It would explain a lot. It is also likely, based on this faux infotainment that the United States Fathers established the Constitution of Druid concepts and that they were high level 33 degree Druids, particularly Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson. See, when you have one good explanation for everything, everything just falls into place.
So there we have it. Herbert Armstrong discovered the key to understanding the Bible through British Israelism and British Israelism was founded by the Druids. We can stop calling them Armstrongists, ACoG and Cult of Herbert Armstrong Mafia and simplify things by just calling them Ancient Pagan Druids or APD for short. The Armstrongists don’t realize that as they save their ‘second tithe’ for the Feast of Tabernacles, observe the supposed Jewish Calendar, believe in the mystical mysteries of Olde Testament Christianity devoid of spiritual values embedded in absolute materialism and ancient rituals, noting that in psychology, the term ritual is sometimes used in a technical sense for a repetitive behavior systematically used by a person to neutralize or prevent anxiety; it is a symptom of obsessive–compulsive disorder. Of course, the original Druids differed in some regards. Monotheistic druids believe there is one Deity: either a Goddess or God, or a Being who is better named Spirit or Great Spirit, to remove misleading associations to gender. But other druids are duotheists, believing that Deity exists as a pair of forces or beings, which they often characterize as the God and Goddess, or in the case of the Armstrongists, God and the Word. Soon they will be Polytheistic Druids believing that many gods and goddesses exist, where they are God as God is God.
All of this should lead us all to one inevitable conclusion.
Herbert Armstrong was really very stupid.