KONEKSHUN

 

a new religion

 

Introduction:

 

Konekshun was conceived in December 2005 by someone who had these thoughts and beliefs for many years.  This person  chose to remain anonymous, because the underlying tenets, beliefs and practices of this religion are accessible to everyone and unique to no one.  This religion does not center around any one God/ess, saint, or leader.  No one is ordained or authorized to act as an official interpreter of this religion.  Rather than encouraging the tendency to look to another human to communicate with “God” and interpret God’s message, this religion encourages its followers to communicate directly and think for oneself.

 

Konekshun acknowledges contributions from many other religions, paths, and belief systems.  It is rooted in both “Western” and “Eastern” thought.  It contains elements of Buddhism, 12-Step programs, Judeo/Christian/Islamic ethical traditions of social responsibility, agnosticism, scientific and philosophic questioning, psychology, social work, and progressive movements to improve conditions in the world. 

Konekshun owes much of its practice to “the 12 Steps,” which in turn owes much of it’s practice to that of certain religious traditions and psychological theories.   Konekshun also owes much to Buddhist thought.  The central difference here lies in the interpretation of Karma, cause and effect.  This is delineated in the tenets below. 

           

Konekshun takes an agnostic position in regard to reincarnation.  If enough sound evidence for reincarnation is eventually demonstrated, Konektors (those who believe in/practice Konekshun), may feel free to incorporate the theory of reincarnation into the tenets of Konekshun.  Whatever such or other changes are made to the tenets or practices of Konekshun, should be done so anonymously, and without any pretense at being a voice of authority.   The original version of Konekshun should remain available for those who prefer or believe more in the original version.

 

No individual profit should ever be made from Konekshun.  As much as possible, any materials, such as the one you are currently reading, should be distributed for free.  If it is necessary to sell materials in order to reproduce and distribute more of them, then any proceeds resulting from such sales should be used either to continue the spread of this religion, or else the profits should be donated to charities or progressive causes which benefit others.

 

Please, Konectors, do not proselytize.  Share these beliefs and information with those who are interested, but do not argue with, harass or try to convince people who disagree.  Anyone who uses Konekshun as an excuse for war or other violence is not a Konektor and has no idea what Konekshun is all about.

 

Thank you for taking the time to read this.  Please think about it seriously and carefully.  Accept that which makes sense to you and is in keeping with your experience of reality, and reject that which is not.  You are a Konektor if you choose to be, if you believe the basic tenets and choose to follow the practices as best you can.  If you can not agree with one of the tenets, or refuse to utilize one or more of the practices, feel free to utilize those with which you do agree.  If you agree sufficiently with the tenets to feel that you are a Konektor, than so be it.  If you do not identify as a Konektor, but still wish to utilize the practices, you are welcome to them.  You can be a good person, and you have the right to life and happiness whether you become a Konektor or not.  This is true for everyone.

 

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KONEKSHUN

 

The basic tenets:

 

Connection

All life is connected.  All human beings are connected at our spiritual core.  Everything everyone does more or less affects everyone else.  Generally, those closest are most impacted; those further away are more remotely affected.  We ourselves are usually the most affected by everything we choose to do.  None the less, we remain connected to everyone, and bound together in the experiencing the eventual outcome of our collective behavior.

 

Good & Bad

Reality is what it is.  The universe is unfolding as it is.  Ultimately, there is no pre-determined morality; no shoulds or shouldn’ts; no good or bad.  Good is most practically defined as that which is beneficial.  Bad is defined as that which is detrimental.  Beneficial actions produce beneficial results and contribute to a more beneficial environment.   Detrimental actions produce detrimental results and contribute to a more detrimental environment.  Most people, (including Konektors), prefer beneficial outcomes and environment.  Konectors (and many other people) therefore believe in increasing beneficial (“good”)actions and decreasing detrimental (“bad”) actions as much as possible.

           

Karma and its limitations

Karma is cause and effect.  What you do affects what happens to you.  That is absolutely true.  But you are not the only influence upon your life.  We are all connected and we are frequently benefited or harmed by the actions of others.  We are each responsible for what we personally do.   But we are not personally and individually responsible for every thing that happens to us.  We are not the sole cause of all our experiences.

 

If you smile at everyone you see, many more people will probably smile back at you than if you frown at everyone you see.  But other factors also influence people’s responses.  Some people will not smile no matter what you do, because they do not want to smile.  Others will smile even if you do not.  If someone chooses not to smile back at you, it was not necessarily because of your karma.  If someone smiles at you when you are frowning, that may not be due to your karma either.

 

Just as demons are not the cause of disease, and earthquakes are not a result of God’s wrath and judgment, likewise, individual karma is not the only cause of every thing that happens to an individual.  No one person is the center of the universe.  Nor do we live separate and isolated lives.  Even if you did nothing but good all of your life, bad things could still happen to you just because you happened to be in a place and time when a detrimental thing happened to whomever was there.

 

Earthquakes, tornadoes, floods will have devastating effects on many people who did nothing to cause these events or to deserve their consequences.  They are not signs of God’s wrath and judgment.  They did not happen to someone because of their misdeeds in past lives.  They are phenomena that are part of the reality of the earth, and are generally neither created nor prevented by humans.

 

People also do devastating and horrifying things to each other through war, other violence, preventable starvation, sexual abuse and other means.   Most individual victims of these extremely detrimental actions are usually not responsible for being victims of these extremely detrimental actions.

 

We humans are collectively responsible for the continued existence of war, human violence, preventable poverty, injustice, and other evils.  (Evil is a word used for extremely detrimental and preventable phenomena caused by human action or inaction.)  But single individuals are not responsible for being a victim of war or racism, for example.  The wealthy are not wealthy because of their prior generosity.  The poor are not poor due to prior stinginess.  A baby injured from a bomb did not cause the explosion and its effects by being bad in a former life.  Victims of genocide did not bring such horrors upon themselves by individually being naughty in prior lives. 

 

Injustice does exist in the world.  Not all suffering is caused by one’s individual self (in this or in past lives.)  We are all in this together and we have the power to hurt others (no matter how undeserving).  We also have the power to help others and create a more beneficial environment for everyone.  Collectively we have the power to end all the man-made evils such as war and injustice.  But before we can end them, we must recognize and acknowledge that they exist.

 

Compassion

Being good is its own reward.

You do not need promises of heaven, threats of hell, or warnings about reincarnation to appreciate the goodness of being good to others and treating them as kindly as you would like to be treated.

 

Even for those who do not consciously recognize our essential connection, living a positive life, being kind to oneself and others, helping to alleviate suffering and increase happiness makes one feel good about oneself, which makes one feel good.   In addition, such an attitude and lifestyle naturally promotes friendship and goodwill, and thus generally leads to more access to human resources and assistance when needed.

 

Furthermore, all the efforts made by individuals to improve the conditions in which everyone lives, has beneficial consequences to the environment which we all share; benefits which thus improve all our lives, whether or not we are conscious of it.  Thus again, being good to yourself and others is its own reward.

 

Spirit

The essence of Konekshun is the recognition that our separateness is an illusion, and that on a deep spiritual level, but in a very real way, we are all connected.  The recognition of our essential connectedness, and the practice of compassion go hand in hand.

 

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KONEKSHUN

 

Practices:

 

All of these practices take time.  Do not try to do everything quickly, or all at once, or to hurry and “get it over with.”  This is not a race, or a chore to be completed and disposed of.  It is a way of life, and it is on-going.

 

Compassion

Be as good a person as you can be.  Keep learning and growing and becoming a better person.  Generally be as non-violent and honest as you can, and treat everyone as kindly as you can.  When ever you can, assist others to grow more healthy, wise, loving, and/or happy. Relieve suffering where ever you can.  Look for ways to help make this world a better place for everyone.

 

Inventory

Take an honest and thorough inventory of yourself as you are now.  Make a list of all the things you like about your self; all the things you believe are beneficial to yourself and/or others.  Make another list of all the things you dislike about your self; all the things you believe are detrimental to yourself and/or others.

Do not get swollen with feelings of pride or defensiveness, or bogged down in feelings of guilt or self-pity.  We all have our strengths and weaknesses, caused by that which came before.  The point here is to see where we are now, and assess our assets and liabilities, so we can see what aspects of ourselves would benefit from growth and improvement.  Thirdly, make a list of those qualities you would like to have, but do not currently display.

 

Modifying “bad” habits

Look at your list of “bad” qualities or habits; those that are detrimental to yourself or others.  Prioritize your list by putting them in order of their impact; that which is most detrimental should be listed first, etc. 

Begin with the most detrimental habit.  Try to get through one day without engaging in that bad habit.  Once you succeed, try to get through another day without engaging in that bad habit.  Continue in this way until you no longer feel the urge to engage in that bad habit. 

Then continue on to the next bad habit on your list.

 

Increasing “good” habits

Look at your list of “good” qualities and habits.  Allow yourself to feel good about your accomplishments and good qualities.  Notice that you are capable of many good things.

Now look at your list of “good” qualities and habits that you would like to have, but do not currently display.  Prioritize them in order of importance; put those which would be most beneficial first. 

Beginning with the most beneficial habit, try practicing it at every opportunity one day.  Try again the next day.  Practice as often as you can, or, depending on the type of habit, as often as you deem reasonable.  (There are times to exercise, and times to rest, for example.)  Keep practicing until it becomes a habit. 

Move on to the next thing on your list.

 

Amends

Make a thorough list of everyone that you have ever harmed during your lifetime.  If you remember past lives, you may include them as well. 

 

After you have made a thorough list, consider how best to make amends to each person on the list that you have harmed.  Be sure to consider any possible harm you might do in making amends, and avoid making such amends if they would cause further harm.  Think honestly and creatively to come up with ideas to make amends in the most beneficial of ways.

 

For each person on your list, try to actually make the best amends you are able to offer.  If the person accepts your offer, that is good.  If the person refuses your offer, let them be; it was still good that you tried.  Perhaps a way to be useful and kind to them in a way that they wont object to will eventually present itself.  Otherwise, just proceed in making amends to the next person on your list.  Make amends to each person until you have made amends (or sincere efforts) to each person on your list.

 

Remember as you make each amends, that one of the most important amends you can make is to learn from your previous mistake, and not repeat it.  If you hurt someone through a bad action, do not ever do that action again.  If that action was part of a habitual pattern of behavior, work hard to change that habit.  Don’t give up your efforts until you succeed.

 

Important habits for daily living

 

Good nutrition  (vegetarianism is recommended, although not required)

Daily exercise

Sufficient sleep/rest

Interaction with others/relationship/communication

Interaction with self/solitude/meditation

Daily inventory

Amends as needed

Dedication to meaningful work or genuine beneficial service of some kind

 

There are plenty of good books available to explain the benefits and methods for achieving good nutrition, exercising in beneficial ways, etc.  There are also good books which explain how to improve relationships and communication, resolve conflicts peacefully and constructively, etc.  One of the most important factors in maintaining good relationships is good listening and communication skills.  Managing and controlling one’s anger is also important for good relationships.  There are many books and classes which teach these things.

 

Meditation

There are many book and teachers of meditation; its varieties, methods, etc.

The benefits of meditation include calming oneself, reducing stress, controlling blood pressure, improving mood and attitude, overcoming anxiety, fear, or depression, and getting in greater touch with oneself, one’s inner essence, reality, and the spiritual connection between oneself and everyone else.  Since Konekshun emphasizes the deep spiritual connection between all living humans, meditation is a most helpful practice for advancing spiritual consciousness for any one on this path.  Actually, meditation is a most excellent vehicle for advancing spiritual consciousness for any one on any spiritual path.  (That is why it is practiced by so  many serious devotees of almost every religion and spiritual practice).

 

Daily Inventory and Amends

The initial inventory and making of amends is like a major housecleaning of a house that was untended for many years, perhaps even decades.  It was a major mess, and there was a lot of work to do to turn that mess into a healthy, comfortable home.  Daily inventory and making amends whenever owed, is like the regular housekeeping that keeps a home healthy and comfortable.

 

Each evening, think over your day and consider whether you have hurt anyone or owe anyone amends.  If so, be sure to do so when the first opportunity arises.  Also think about any way in which you may have hurt yourself.  If you have engaged in a habit that hurts yourself or others, pay attention to that.  Consider how you can begin to change.  (Re-read the section on modifying bad habits.)

 

Remember that you make amends for harm you have done to others.  This is not the same thing as failing to meet all of another’s expectations.   If you have the bad habit of being a “co-dependent” or “people-pleaser”, do not make false amends to appease others or win their approval.  Amends are not to please others, but only to rectify any real harm you may have caused by your actions, words or intentions.

 

As none of us is ever perfect, daily inventory and the making of amends is, like the rest of the practices, a lifelong endeavor.

 

Meaningful work / beneficial service

Once you have acquired the basics of survival for yourself and your family, seek to do good in the world either through your career, volunteer work, art, or social/political activism for a good cause.   Do not be content to just accumulate wealth or material possessions.  Make your life more meaningful by doing something meaningful with it.  

 

Compassion

Be as good a person as you can be.  Keep learning and growing and becoming a better person.  Generally be as non-violent and honest as you can, and treat everyone as kindly as you can.  When ever you can, assist others to grow more healthy, wise, loving, and/or happy. Relieve suffering where ever you can.  Look for ways to help make this world a better place for everyone.

 

(It is not an error that the first practice is repeated as the last practice.)

 

May peace, love, goodness and happiness be yours, ours, theirs, everyone’s.



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