On the Sofa with Benno



A conversation between Benno and Angelika
October 11th, 2010

October in Michigan, photo by Paul

B: Are you there Geli?

A: Hello Benno!!!
I wish you a fine Canadian Thanksgiving Day!

B: Wow, so cool, thank you so much!
So what’s on the agenda today?

A: Would you mind telling me what Thanksgiving Day is all about? We do not have this here in Germany. There is something called, “Giving thanks to the harvest”….but this is a Christian holiday and I do not celebrate it.

B: Yes that is basically what it is here as well…a ‘harvest thanks’ no religious association though.
In the States it comes later, 3rd week in November, they celebrate the landing of the pilgrams at Plymouth Rock.

A: Pilgrims is a Christian term, isn´t it? So the first people who entered American ground were pilgrims….I thought they were refugees, motivated to leave Europe out of political and economical lack?

B: I think they were Quakers and were also being persecuted for that. (I think).

A: Really? Are Quakers a religious sect?

B: Sure I think so, just like the Amish and Mennonites, many of which have settled around here. Many still don’t have electricity, and use horse and buggy, only wear 18th century black clothing..

A: This reminds me of a growing number of people here in Germany who love to stick to the Medieval Times. It is like a parallel world they live in. Some only on weekends and holidays and others all the year.  We have many Medieval Festivals where visitors can watch the way they live….. unlike the groups you mentioned the majority of Medieval people over here in Europe have nothing in mind with Christian traditions…they turn back to pre-Christian traditions.
I do not understand this ….though they are nice to look at ……and the music bands are great performers…. but otherwise, I always wonder why so many people love to stick to the past.

Has Canada also been founded by pilgrims?

B: No , Canada was founded by French explorers. In the early days of course, European governments/Monarchy were running everywhere looking for land and riches to exploit.
The French that settled here were Roman Catholic, of course. The Engilsh were here as well back then, I guess there were a variety of protestant denominations.

A: So America was founded for very similar reasons like Israel? Refugees of a certain religious belief system founded a state? As the Jewish took the land from the Palestines, the Europeans took the land from the American Indians…..and all in the name of the Old Testament, wasn´t it?

B: Interesting parallel Geli, I think the only difference is that the Jewish people claim the land as their God given land. I suppose one could argue that the early conquests ,that were made on behalf of the Kings/Queens often claimed divine authority over its people and lands as well.

A:  Ja, the Romans who hijacked the Christian Idea in the 3rd Century in order to deepen their fading power again, trained their ruling descendants well. This got mixed with the pre-Christian knowing that all is one, meaning the land and the king are one.

B: Yes, I agree, I think one can sum it all up and say, Groups of society act just like individuals, in that they carry a collective ego, they all have baggage from the past along with a sense of entitlement. Look back when the war in the Balkans were raging ,Serbia not only claimed certain
lands as inherently theirs but also felt justified in ethnic cleansing and mass  murder.

A: Isn´t it that the antagonists in the Balkan Conflict were of different kinds of religious beliefs? I might be wrong, but I thought there it was the Christians against the Muslims?

B: If I remember correctly, the Serbs are Eastern Orthodox.
They especially hated the Muslims its true but they also persecuted the Croatians ,and Slovenians who were primarily RC.

A: Somehow the original peaceful content of Christianity got lost in time and space……and the  more or less empty mantle got abused for power struggles and manipulation.
For me it is still not easy to not throw out the baby with the bathwater when it comes to Christianity.
But at least I can observe what I am doing …..lol….and my intellect can acknowledge that there is genuine truth in the Christian doctrine….Michaela keeps pointing this patiently out to me….lol…..it is just that my heart doesn’t warm up for it.

B: For me the problem is not with the teachings of Christianity per se…..the problem as far as I’m concerned is the emphasis on ‘the word’ rather that the the truth it points to.
If Christianity could admit that the word is not the truth, I think the scriptures could be seen in a new light.

A: Ja. Christianity itself is an idea or a concept, and therefore an object. Can an object ever deepen by itself? The change can only happen within a living being, a human being. If Christianity has enough believers or practitioners who become present within the Christian system, only then the system itself will deepen and the words become secondary and understood as merely symbolic pointers. Christians have to grow up and become “respons – able” for what they are doing, in other words, conscious.

B: Totally agree! The word must become secondary ….the Truth primary.
Humanity may not have been ready 1000 years ago, but now, I think we are.
Unfortunately institutions have a life of their own, change is difficult, and that’s the scary part, that dogmatic extreme beliefs will finally do us all in.

A: The good news is, that the part that can get killed is the form (ego, body) not the genuine Being within us. Christianity has only existed for 2000 years now, Life on Earth is much older…..I trust in Life that it is holding the space for the Christian experiment, as long as it is needed….and then let us all move on. The Egypt period is past, so is the Roman and the Greek.
Evolution happens, if the fundamentalists like it or not.

B: The revolution hopefully coming is bigger then all the previous combined, it’s a paradigm shift in Human Consciousness, that doesn’t just replace one belief with another or one religion with another.
I hope that when/if truth becomes primary, the Universality of ‘all God’s children’ (in Christian terms) will be truly realized.

A: Although the living beings in flora and fauna are below ego, they still point to what Life is all about: To form a unity out of diversity. All different plants and animals are expression of Life itself. None is better than the other. Instead of manifesting separation they complement each other.

To me personally this is a very important realization.

B: Yes , a very important realization, indeed.
The expression of Life was always, is always, and will always be One. All from one Source, it is inherently One. It seems Humanity’s present stage, getting side tracked by mind for a couple of hundred thousand years, may be finally coming to an end. Hopefully.

A: Eckhart says that we all carry the seed of the “New Earth” within us. Am I willing to let it unfold within me?
Yes, I am.

B: Yes, I am too!

A: This is a very lovely ending. What do you think?

B: Yes I agree, thanks for the invite to your lovely Sofa. The fabric goes very well with the drapes, I might add.

A: Thank you very much! I has been very much enjoyable for me to sit with you. And you are very welcome to come back, whenever you feel like it!

Thanks Geli, ‘till we meet again!

Ja. Take good care, Benno!



Medieval Market, August 2010, photo by John


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1 Response to On the Sofa with Benno

  1. Randy says:

    Thank you Benno and Angelika, this has been a wonderful read. I do believe we will come together as one and the truth will find a way to come to the surface.

    Agree that Constantine in the 3rd century changed the face of Christianity forever. It’s easy to see why, he wanted to become bigger than what was already in place and re-wrote history. The true teachings of Christianity are pure as they are from the teachings of a very humble and loving Christ.

    I would love to come and see your (Benno) wonderful countryside. I’ve heard so much about where you are. (Guessing from the point of being founded by the French) I’ve had the privilege of visiting Vancouver, Toronto, Calgary, Edmonton but never the pure French areas of the country. I was trying to get my wife to go to Montreal on our anniversary since it depicts European style of architecture so perfectly (at least from the pictures). Maybe we can visit, if you are in the area. (the 30th is next April)

    Again, thanks for the conversation!

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