When you open the brightly colored Christmas gifts, here is what you will discover are your six choices:
Choose one to four eBooks. Decide who you want to be your “reading partner.” Decide which books you want to share with others who are on your “Christmas list.”
Read to enjoy! Read to learn. Read to free yourself from some of the religious quirks that have taken root in your life and caused you unnecessary suffering.
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#1 Finding True Love Online is no easy road to travel.
I was where you are . . . facing my favorite holiday “alone” for yet another year. In October, I tried a new dating site, MeetMindful.com, and only 3 out of 50 women responded to my welcoming messages. Discouragement set in.
But here is the good news: I was to discover that three is all that was needed. The quality of candidates here is outstanding. And my discovery of my beloved Elena (an Italian living in China) as one of these three was so spectacular that I just spent $1207 for a round trip flight ticket, Cincinnati to Shanghai, arriving on 31 Jan 2017.
So, for those who are still looking and for those who stopped looking, I’d like to send you a red string wrapped around the eBook that tells about our mutual story on this dating site beginning 01 Nov 2016. It’s a very personal story for both of us. It’s filled with laughter and tears, with awesome pitfalls and moments of unexpected grace. Most of all, it’s the story of hope and of love that you might benefit from at this time of the year.
So, for those who are still looking and for those who stopped looking, I’d like to send you a red string wrapped around our true life story. It’s filled with laughter and tears, with awesome pitfalls and moments of unexpected grace. Most of all, it’s the story of hope and of love that you might benefit from at this time of the year.
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#2 For fifty years, the vast majority of Roman Catholic priests and theologians have been forced into a reluctant silence when it comes to birth control, celibacy of priests, indulgences, ordination of women, and homosexuality. I myself, while teaching in Roman Catholic seminaries for twenty-five years, was required to keep a guarded silence on all these issues. But this reluctant obedience has not served me nor has it served those whom I helped prepare for lay and ordained ministry.
Pope Francis, for his part, has forthrightly warned our bishops against “the temptation to hostile inflexibility, that is, wanting to close oneself within the written word . . , within the law, within the certitude of what we know and not of what we still need to learn and to achieve” (source). When this happens, “the bread” that Jesus blesses and gives to his disciples is transformed “into a stone” that is either “cast against the sinners” or it is carried by them as an “unbearable burden” (Luke 11:46).
By way of atoning for my years of silence, I have prepared this book in order to equip my former students and all those faithful Catholics who are interested in sorting out the wheat from the chaff within current Catholic teaching. What you discover herein will supply you with clear, strong, and compelling case studies that can be used to open up informed and reliable explorations on topics that have largely been obscured by authoritative pronouncements, by shoddy biblical scholarship, and by ignorance of Catholic history.
Whether you want to speak to your teenage daughter or to your bishop, these case studies offer talking points that will enable you to make sense out of the faith that is intended to nourish us, to make us free, and to draw us into harmony with the Spirit of Christ.
As a non-Catholic very interested in history and religion, I found this book to be extremely helpful and eye-opening in terms of understanding sacred scriptures in their historical context and how they ended up presenting important challenges to all Christians today. I learned a lot from this wonderful book. It will help support and strengthen those who want to be given the chance to think for themselves—speaking their own truth along their own personal journey—while upholding powerful tenets of love, hope, and understanding.
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#3 In the traditional teaching of the churches, Eve gets named as the companion of Adam who coaxes him to sin against God. This fall from grace afflicts the human race until the end of time. Eve is the “tool of the devil” that betrays her husband.
The purpose of this book is to enable you to read the hidden clues in the text of Gen 1-3 in order to discover the “original meaning” of the text . In so doing, you will be surprised to discover that the “original meaning” differs strongly from what the churches have been teaching. Examples:
- When the text of Gen 2-3 is examined, Eve’s “fall from grace” is never mentioned. On the contrary, the eating of the fruit of “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil” is associated with wondrous super powers: “their eyes were opened” (Gen 3:5, 7). This is all the more wondrous in so far as these transformations enable Eve and Adam to see things clearly as God sees them. Far from being a “fall,” therefore, Eve’s eating enables her to become “like God” (Gen 3:6, 22).
- Classical theology speaks of Eve as being deceived by the devil who was bent upon the destruction of Adam. The “serpent” described in the text is never associated with the “devil” at any point. Rather, you will discover that the “serpent” functions as a spirit-guide within ancient Middle Eastern culture. Far from deceiving Eve, this “serpent” is assuredly a truth-teller: “You will not die [when you eat this fruit]; for God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil” (Gen 3:5-6). And, according to the story of Genesis, this is exactly what happens.
- Adam, meanwhile, has been telling Eve that God said, “You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the middle of the garden, nor shall you touch it, or you shall die” (Gen 3:3). When Eve touches the fruit, however, nothing happens. Adam clearly is mistaken. So, she eats it. And the eating has wondrous effects. Thus, Eve exposes the errors of Adam on both counts. We can even surmise that Eve trusted God to be a gentle and wise parent who would never cultivate a poisonous fruit tree in his garden if he knew that he was endangering the life of his children. Adam, strange to say, never took the time to explore the deep contradictions between what God told him [“you will die”] and what the serpent told Eve [“you will be like God”].
- According to the Genesis account, Eve and Adam are expelled from the Garden. According to the prevailing theology of the churches, this expulsion takes place due to God abhorrence of their grave sin [the “original sin”] that God was seemingly unable or unwilling to forgive. The text itself provides quite another explanation: “The LORD God said, ‘See, the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil; and now, he might reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life, and eat, and live forever,’ therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden” (Gen 3:22-23). In effect, therefore, God has planted not one but two empowering trees: “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil” and “the tree of eternal life.” Having been empowered by eating of the former tree, God figures that it would just be a matter of time before his children ate of the latter tree that would seemingly make them “live forever” just as God does.
- God intended his children to be mortal. The text specifies this intention clearly, “You are [made out of] dust, and to dust you shall return” (Gen 3:19). Hence, contrary to traditional theology, Adam and Eve were never designed for immortality, but their sin caused God to change his mind. The text says that God assigns the immortal “cherubim” the task of “guard[ing] the way to the tree of life” (Gen 3:24). Here again the text indicates clearly that “sin” was not an issue here; rather, protection of the “tree of life” was God’s primary concern.
- It is instructive that Eve and Adam and all their children lived nearly a thousand years. If we trust the bible when it teaches us that a long life is a sign of God’s blessing, then we have to conclude that Eve and Adam were wondrously blessed with long lives. God had no cause to curse them, and he was surely not unable or unwilling to forgive his children for some imagined “grave sin.” The pangs of childbearing are cursed and the sweat from tilling the soil is cursed—but God never once curses his children. In fact, just before leaving Eden, God gave both his children a very necessary gift. Maybe you know what that gift might be.
- Why do Adam and Eve suddenly become aware that they are naked after eating the prescious fruit of the first tree? Why do they hide from each other and hide from God? The answer to this key question will amaze you. Do you already have a hunch?
My book is an easy read. It demontrates step-by-step how a research theologian like myself works to uncover the “original meaning” of the text of Genesis. Then, as an extra treat, my book goes on to show why and how church teachers of the 2nd century deliberately covered over the image of Eve as the “pioneer of Adam’s salvation” in favor of presenting Eve as the “gateway of the devil bent on corrupting Adam and all his children.”
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#4 Like Kevin Kukla, I am a cradle-Catholic. I grew up in Euclid, Ohio, and my parents made certain that I attended a Catholic grade school and Catholic high school. Then I myself chose to attend a Catholic university and two Catholic graduate schools in theology. I was an altar server for fifty years and gained a robust gratitude for the power of Holy Orders and for the sacramental presence of Christ in the Eucharist. I mastered Theistic theology and then went on to master Neothomism and revisionist theologies that erupted following Vatican II. I trained future Catholic priests and lay ministers in three different seminaries for twenty-five years.
I know and I love the Church, warts and all. However, I also learned that our Holy Mother the Church can be calloused and mean-spirited when it came time to consider issues of sexual conduct. Contrary to the orientation of Kevin Kukla, I am persuaded that the Catholic hierarchy has “almost never gotten it right on issues of sexual ethics.” For me “to serve the Lord,” therefore, I need to expose and challenge Kevin’s historical ignorance, his defective biblical interpretations, and his philosophical errors. This challenge is not so much for Kevin’s sake but for the sake of honest Catholics everywhere who have needlessly suffered due to the cruel and misguided “pastoral guidance” of “super Catholics” like Kevin Kukla.
This book is not just an academic debate. Rather it represents the opportunity to listen to two committed Catholics passionate about living and improving the sexual guidance given by our Holy Mother, the Church.
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#5 Meeting real women in your own hometown is haphazard at best. It is also massively time-consuming. Online, women reach out to you every time you open your mailbox. These women can communicate with candor and directness that is nearly impossible in real life situations. But the dark side is also there. Someone can use fake pictures and borrow words of love stolen from others online. One can even receive “faked” Red Cross identity papers and “faked” passports confirming the identity of the sender. So what is one to do?
If you don’t play with this fire, you will never get burnt. Nor will you ever enjoy engaging conversations with woman who you’d never meet in your limited social circles. Millions of men and women are linking up every day using the internet. Success stories abound. In a study of marriages celebrated 2005-2012, researchers discovered that a whopping 35% of Americans initially met their love-match online. So what does one do?
I advise you: “Go for it! But walk softly and carry this book so that you will spot the frauds and avoid the scams.” With my help, you will not foolishly lose your money and you will not needlessly break your heart. Moreover, you will have the satisfaction of progressively mastering basic skills for uncovering the “truth” and for bringing local law enforcers and the FBI to take action on your behalf (should you need them).
Excerpt from Case One: Nurse Juliet Begs to Visit
I felt some bitterness for a few days. I had been “a love-sick dude” who lost his good judgment because of the attractive words in an email. Had I learned a lesson? Yes and no. This was only my first encounter with fraud. I didn’t yet have any way of knowing to what degree dating sites were plagued by deeply entrenched and cleverly disguised systemic fraud. But I was a detective, and I knew “what evil lurks in the hearts of men.”[i] So fasten your seat belts, my dear reader, and get ready for the ride of your life. . . .
PS: I thank Aaron Milavec for allowing me to post my book on his site. ~~Adam Rose
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#6 Rosie says:
When it came time to planning how to lose my virginity, I was keen to have the best guidance possible. Hands down, Beth F. is sharp as a tack when it comes to inter-personal issues. Beth also happens to be my best friend, so I have no hesitation to speak openly with her because she will never needlessly shame me or silence me. We roomed together three years in college. We rejoiced together and cried together during these years. Between us, there were no secrets.
Here is the plan we hatched together. I was going to use an internet dating site and to find someone special who was willing not only to pop my cherry but to be emotionally and physically intimate with me for a period of a few months. In brief, it made no sense to just have sex once or twice with a good man. It had to be GREAT SEX, and great sex, so I thought, cannot take place unless there is emotional, spiritual, and physical intimacy.
The Craft Prize Edition was released 12 April 2018. When you buy this item, you will receive a Kindle MOBI [1.8 Mb] and a PDF file [800 kb].
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Aaron in 2020
Meet the Author
Aaron Milavec began his career as an innovative teacher and software developer. After devoting twenty-five years to the training of future priests and lay ministers, Milavec turned his attention to gender studies and the empowerment of women. For seven years (2007-2014) he collaborated with others in designing and operating Catherine of Siena Virtual College—an international, interactive center for the empowerment of women and men through online learning circles. In his free time, he gravitated towards primitive camping and hiking in the woods. He set up an art studio in his garage and won awards for his ceramic pottery in the Maya tradition. He became an avid participant in the Mankind Project.
In his youth, Milavec was fascinated with science. After beginning graduate studies in physics, however, Milavec suffered an unexpected loss of faith in science. At that point, he gravitated toward the philosophy of science and ended up with an abiding passion for religious inquiry and spiritual development. While a Research Fellow at the University of Victoria, he completed an essay, “How Acts of Discovery Transform our Tacit Knowing Powers in both Scientific and Religious Inquiry,” Zygon 42/2 (2006) 465-486.
Milavec earned his B.S. in physics from the University of Dayton, his S.T.B. from the University of Fribourg (Switzerland) in 1968 and his Th.D. from the Graduate Theological Union (Berkeley) in 1973.
Milavec has published eighteen books, eight chapters in collected works, and sixty journal articles. His most recent book, What Jesus Would Say to Same-Sex Couples (2019) exposes the biblical and theological errors of the anti-gay Gospel found in Roman Catholicism and Evangelical Protestantism.
For open discussion on this book, go to http://Jesus4Lesbians.com
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