The Best Teacher I Ever Had
by Darryl M. Gumm
Written January 29, 2005 - Revised February 15, 2020 - Revised January 1, 2024

A couple days ago, I received an email message implying the terrorist attacks on the United States in 2001 were the result of our country’s citizens turning away from God in a multitude of ways. It implied if there was more public bible reading and public prayer allowed in the USA, these bad things wouldn’t happen to us. My response was simply stating that prayer and bible reading alone will not end the reign of terror. We need to live our lives consistent with what Jesus and other spiritual teachers taught while they were living. This response was met by a rather direct, bible-quoting response insisting that Jesus Christ was not sent here by God to teach us but to save us. As a Christian, I wholeheartedly agree that he came to save us. However, my spiritual mentors have helped me to understand how we have a role to play in saving ourselves by allowing God to work in and through us. The graphic herein gives clarity to that concept.

In the book of Matthew, Jesus Christ talks about the pious people and religious leaders of his time who were hypocrites for professing to keep the law, publicly reading the scriptures and publicly praying, while hating, cheating and hurting their neighbors, prophets, wise men and scribes. He warns us of false prophets who would have us believe they are God’s people, but in reality, are the furthest from that.

Much of Jesus’ ministry was focused on teaching the people of his day, and all generations thereafter, how to live lives of service “to the least of our brethren.” Living into this lifestyle praises our Loving Creator who created everything which existed then and exists today. As was the case then, people of our age reject the notion that anything like that can ever be possible. However, I challenge people of the 21st Century to passionately apply the teachings of Jesus Christ, and other spiritual mentors. Doing so, will result in changes necessary for humanity, and the natural world, to thrive for generations to come.

If, by chance, you don’t believe in God or anything spiritual, living according the graphic herein will still serve you and the rest of humanity well.