It's amusing to observe how much work some religious believers who comment on my blog posts go to in defending an obvious fact.
A recent example is me stating in several blog posts that the notion of the Radha Soami Satsang Beas (RSSB) guru being God in Human Form, or GIHF, is a central RSSB tenet. How can you have a "Path of the Saints" without a saint?
The whole rationale behind the RSSB teachings is that God manifests in the form of a Perfect Living Master (PLM) to guide souls back to Him, because otherwise God remains an unseen, unheard, unknown entity beyond the bounds of time and space.
Today "Appreciative Reader," a commenter who almost always makes a lot of sense, wrote a comment that made me think, right-on. I've shared it below. The blog post the comment was left on is "RSSB teachings: 'The perfect Master is the Lord in human flesh'."
The quotations in the comment below come from another commenter, Spence Tepper. I'll observe that Charan Singh, a previous RSSB guru, said "We're unable to look at simple things in a simple way," or words to that effect. I no longer agree with a lot of what Charan Singh taught, but I heartily agree with that sentiment.
As Appreciative Reader says, it's a simple fact that RSSB teaches that the guru is God in Human Form. Anyone who can't recognize that in a simple way is willfully ignoring reality.
"The belief in GIHF isn't actually encouraged by the Masters, as you see here."
Ha ha ha, back playing cat and mouse, are we? Regardless of what's said *here*, GIHF/PLM has been referenced, as a core teaching, plenty of times *elsewhere*, as Brian's amply shown, and as you've agreed with him already; and indeed, as you've admitted to me as well, and what's more even put forward a conjecture about why they have done it. So no, it isn't true that belief in GIHF isn't actually encouraged in RSSB. Quite the contrary.
"Here is what Maharaj Charan Singh said about this in answer to a question: ...In the beginning we should just take him as a preacher or a teacher or a guide. And when we go in, we will realize what he does for us. We automatically see what he is. In the beginning we are just to take him as a guide, as a friend, as a leader, somebody to put us on the path. Then we ourselves will realize more and more why we need him..."
That's complete, utter BS. Sure that's what MCS says here, but had that been what RSSB is actually doing, then like I'd said they'd simply have actually walked the talk, and actually taught that the master is simply a teacher, and left the initiate to find out for himself what there is to find out. They wouldn't have taught that the master is GIHF, in that case.
You can't have it both ways. You can't, at the end of a long chase, after finally having been cornered, buckle down and admit that RSSB teaches GIHF/PLM; and after I ask, then after a few further rounds of the chasing-the-tail routine, finally buckle down again and put forward your conjecture about why it is RSSB teaches GIHF/PLM; and then after all of that suddenly change tacks and try to present a random quote and basis that quote try to claim, afresh, all over again, that RSSB does not actually teach GIHF.
That's simply trying the old cat-and-mouse routine all over again, that carousel ride I referred to in my first comment in this thread.
Brian had been wondering why you, and a few others following your lead, are trying to claim that RSSB does not teach GIHF/PLM, when it is plain as day that they do. The answer, I conclude, from all of these exchanges, is cognitive dissonance plain and simple.
As I've clearly shown here, RSSB teaches blind faith in essence exactly as the monotheisms do, despite the vow-not-vow thing. That's exactly what my last comment to you was about. To admit that would be to show up RSSB in an unflattering light, as a purveyor of woo; to admit that is to back oneself into a position there can be no defending against rational criticism; therefore the kneejerk reaction is to try to slide off to a different position, even if that position isn't quite based in reality.
Hence these incessant sidebars, and changing the subject, and verbal feints and tricks galore, in these threads. I hope the latest round of rinse-repeat-afresh cat-and-mouse, where after all is said and done you try yet one more time to claim that RSSB does not teach GIHF/PLM might break through that cognitive dissonance and, just perhaps, impinge on an awareness trying desperately to keep its eyes blinkered.
On the other hand, maybe not: because that is the nature of this animal, this cognitive dissonance thing. Fascinating.