It is at this point that I'm probably going to offend a large group of people and/or deities...
[Non-Ordinary Reality – it is dark]
[A figure in a flowing red robe is illuminated]
Mithra: Let there be light!
[Ominous upbeat music plays as the flaming words 'THE MITHRAIC GROUP' burn in the air. The burning words disappear as lights illuminate four other figures sitting lounging on pillows]
Mithra: I love doing that... Er um... Welcome to The Mithraic Group, the spiritual world's most popular irrelevant shouting match. I'm your host Mithra, the emanator of truthful light. With me today are four guests: L. Ron Hubbard - the Founder of the Scientology Relig...
Hubbard: Applied Religious Philosophy! We are...
Mithra: Right!... Moving on. We also have the god Krishna, psychologist Sigmund Freud, that plagiarizer Jes...
Jesus: You copied me!
[Mithra rolls his eyes]
Mithra: Before you were even around? Alright, I'm sorry I brought this up again lets just move on shall we?
[Jesus just glares at Mithra]
Mithra: Also with us tonight is the Bodhisattva Dakiniten, also known as the Kami Inari, and he has..
[Mithra looks over to see Dakiniten in the form of a beautiful woman astride a large white nine tailed fox with snakes wrapped around her arms]
Mithra: She?... Let's just get started shall we?
[Everyone nods as Mithra grabs and opens a sealed envelope]
Mithra: Issue one:... Deity? Is there a supreme deity/God/Goddess/gods? Considering that there are several gods here I think we can safely say ye...
Freud: Hold on! This is all an illusion!
Mithra: Mr. Freud, how are you talking to me then?
Freud: You don't exist! I just took a bit too much coke or someone mixed something into my dosage... BUT you don't exist apart from my mind in any case.
Mithra: Ok, I'll humor you... Why do I not exist?
Freud: You are just a neurosis, humans want a celestial father figure to protect them so they created a sky father to protect them in the form of God after killing and eating their father.
Mithra: I beg your pardon?
Freud: All males have an Oedipus Complex, in that they wish to have sex with their mothers. Sons are jealous of their father's relationship with their mothers. While they value the protection of their father they see him as a rival. When humans were banded together in polygamous primal hordes a revolt arose and a group of sons killed and ate their father, the alpha male of the group, so that they could have sex with their mothers. They felt bad about this act later and the dead alpha male was turned into a protective sky father and ritual animal sacrifice was done in place of killing a human to remember this occurrence. The Super Ego then internalized this 'God' into itself and religion was set up to help keep in check the violent sexual urges of humanity. This neurosis has reached the end of it's usefulness in our modern age when we can hold things in check through reason and logic.
Mithra: Uh... Interesting theory...
Jesus: Mr. Freud you have no proof I don't exist and...
Freud: You are a neurosis, the product of wishful thinking and delusion.
Jesus: Many of my followers have had personal experiences with me!
Freud: They were hallucinating or were deluded by their wishful thinking.
Jesus: Were not!
Jesus: Were not!
Jesus: Were not!
Jesus: Were not!
Jesus: Were not!
Mithra: THAT'S ENOUGH!
[Mithra glares at Freud]
Mithra: Don't make me call Pazuzu to haul you off the set! We're moving on! Issue two: What is the nature of deity or ultimate reality?
Freud: Illusion! Neurosis! You are all in my mind!!! Sexual...
[The demon Pazuzu flies in and grabs the screaming shouting Freud and flies off]
Mithra: That's better. Replacing Freud is my good friend and standby Marduk!
[Marduk comes in and sits down on Freud's pillows]
Mithra: Back to the Issue. What is the nature of deity or ultimate reality?
Jesus: I am the God as the son. I am the son and God. I am all that is and will ever be. I am the alpha and omega. I...
Krishna: You are an avatar of myself. I am myself an avatar of Vishnu who is an avatar of Brahman, the unchanging ultimate reality that is. It is me and I am it. You are just another emanation of the ultimate reality that is. We exist as personal forms of the ultimate reality.
Marduk: How do you know this 'Brahman' or ultimate reality exists? What if there are just many separate gods just as there are separate humans?
Krishna: There is nothing that is separate.
Dakiniten: Separate from what? At the core of everything is nothingness. We are nothing and everything in existence are just processes in the ultimate reality. Nothing more. In nothingness is everything. Form is emptiness, emptiness is form.
Mithra: That almost sounds like the same thing... Just different semantics.
Dakiniten: Perhaps it may be... The main difference is that Krishna does not hold to impermanence. So his view holds that things are more static and unchanging than mine. There is no unchanging 'Brahman' to which we are apart of... we are part of a constantly changing reality where nothing is static.
Mithra: Fair enough.
Hubbard: I refuse to comment on this as I do not think that idle speculation on this helps us in any real way.
Dakiniten: For once I find myself partly agreeing with Hubbard. In the end the exact nature of deity and the universe does not matter. It is what we do that matters and we must strive for the liberation of all.
Hubbard: Liberation? There is no liberation from rebirth. We are separate entities and our goal is to become advanced beings who can make full use of our inherent powers. To become like a god.
Dakiniten: Your path will only lead to suffering as you attach yourself to what has no form. Even the gods die and are locked into the cycle of death and rebirth.
Marduk: What is passed on in your 'rebirth'?
Dakiniten: The effects of the previous life. Like a flame that is passed between candles.
Marduk: But there must be something that passes on tied to this? The thing that is the fire.
Dakiniten: Maybe. Some have speculated that the fire itself may be the 'pure self'. It is nether the self nor the non-self for to hold to the concept of ether a non-self or self is not the middle way.
[Dakiniten now appears as an old man with a large white beard]
Marduk: Huh... You're confusing me... and weren't you female a second ago?
[Dakiniten smiles and turns into a large white fox]
Dakiniten: Nothing is permanent. Everything changes.
Mithra: Dakiniten, for the sake of things could you settle on maybe one form for now?
[Dakiniten changes back into his/her first form]
Marduk: Dakiniten, what you say seems full of contradictions and...
Dakiniten: Perhaps the world isn't so logical and cannot be just put into concepts or perhaps these teachings and views are just upaya-kaushalya, expedient means to bring one closer to the Dharma. Holding that we are nothing but processes certainly checks the impulse to selfishness. Whatever leads you on the path to enlightenment...
[A golden apple with 'Kallisti' written on it rolls on to the stage... It only travels a few feet before Mithra gets up and kicks it away]
Mithra: Oh no! We're not falling for that again!
Krishna: What was that?
Mithra: Never you mind! We're moving on to Issue Three: How should beings worship deity or gain enlightenment?
Jesus: Prayers should be directed at me or my father or through a saint or angel to me. I am the only way. If you just believe and follow me you shall join me in my paradise to live in perfect bliss.
Krishna: One should devote oneself through ritual to a form of Brahman like me... and some of my followers consider me to be the most perfect form of the godhead...
[Krishna smiles and plays with his hair for a moment]
Krishna: Through devotion you will come to realise that you are no different than me and experience liberation by fading into Brahman like a drop of water fades into the ocean.
Marduk: Support your local deities and those who help you.
Dakiniten: You must be a light unto yourself. Your teacher and/or bodhisattvas can show you the path but you must go down it yourself. Then you shall become enlightened... but through your path you will develop compassion for all living beings and you will work to aid their enlightenment before you experience Parinirvana... The ultimate state of Nirvana where there is liberation from rebirth and the fading away of the skandhas, the parts which make up the 'self'... It is like a candle that burns out.
Hubbard: Audit out your negative experiences to become clear of the chains which hold you down and then you shall develop your inherent spiritual powers.
[Reverend Sun Myung Moon walks on to the set]
Moon: Hey guys want to be in another one of my Plays?! Free barbecue with vegetarian dishes afterwards!
Mithra: Hey welcome Reverend Moon! You have to be one of the greatest cooks in the universe! I'm sure everyone will join in your play!
Moon: Oh thank you! You guys are the greatest! It's in Korean again for my audience so I have transliterated what I want you all to say again!
Mithra: No problem as long as you dish out your famous Korean barbecue!
Moon: Well come come then.
Mithra: Well that ends another exciting Mithraic Group! Peace out everyone!
[Everyone starts to walk off]
Jesus: Anyone know what Moon is having us say?
Mithra: I don't know Korean... No one here does... It's a hard language. I'm sure it's nothing much... He's a nice guy and he cooks that great barbecue...
Jesus: Yeah he does...
..don't kill me... This was meant to be humorous and in good fun so if you felt offended by this take a seat and relax: it's just a simple humor piece.