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Welcome to the Beyond Homo Sapien Book!

INTRODUCTION

(The part where I introduce myself)

Hello, my name is Paul Tokgozoglu and I have always wanted to write a book.

Since I was a kid, I have been spinning stories. Whether it was to get more time playing Age of Empires II, more cookies from the closet, or an overnight stay at a friends, I was always very good at coming up with stories to explain myself.

I’ll be honest with you, reader, this is not going to be a normal book.

You see, I tried writing that way… I tried writing books the way that everyone else has, the way my college professors recommended, and I’ve done my best to follow all the “rules” of writing books. It has been explained to me that publishers prefer a certain format for a book and that you, as the reader, expect certain things from the books you choose to buy.

Bad news for me: it never really worked out for me. It didn’t quite click. I’d write all good and hard (that’s what she said) for a few short hours of bliss and then get bored/tired/fed-up with the creative process and move onto another project. The books remain here on my desktop, unfinished. There’s some really good ones in there (like an idea about an alien arrival on earth from a first-person perspective) but nothing that ever held my attention enough to actually finish.

Bummer, because I always wanted to write a book.

After a particularly revealing and powerful mushroom experience a few weeks ago, I had a bit of an epiphany.

Books are meant to be art.

The very purpose of writing is to express oneself in a way that conveys emotion, ideas, and shares stories in a powerful way. Good books follow a certain formula that result in the reader feeling emotionally charged and transported to another world. In his book “On Writing”, Stephen King writes (or talks if you listened on Audible like I did) about how writing is a form of telepathy. You and I are engaged in a form of real life telepathy RIGHT NOW. Here, I’ll prove it to you:

There is a dark room with a small table in the middle

At the table sits a small, red, furry rabbit

The door opens

In walks Sam

Sam looks at the rabbit and says “How’s it going Steve?”

The rabbit replies “I’m not Steve, I’m a rabbit”

You see what just happened?

Your mind just created all of that as you read those words. You saw a rabbit, a dark room, a guy named Sam, etc. etc. Similarly, as I was writing that example, I saw all of that in MY head too. Of course, mine looked different than yours but I presume we probably envision rabbits, dark rooms, and people named Sam all the same (i.e. Sam probably has hands instead of tentacles).

We just engaged in a form of telepathy. Granted, it’s much clunkier than if I were to think something into your mind (somehow). However, the effect is much the same albeit delayed since I’m writing in Mansfield, Missouri, in November, 2019, and you’re probably on Mars in 2057 or something like that.

Regardless, it’s a mind-bending concept when you really begin to breakdown what is about to happen if you continue to read this book (it’ll get better I promise): you are about to absorb some of my mind into yours, compare it with the notes in your own head, and see if any of these crazy ideas I’m about to present are worth keeping. If not, then you’ll probably forget about this book or talk to your friends at the bar tonight about this “weird book you read with a weird intro” and leave it there.

Normally, authors don’t take time to share all of this information regarding the creative process, the nature of writing, and telepathy. However, the topic of this book is the evolution of the human species and where we go from here. As you’ll see in coming pages, the topic of telepathy and sharing ideas between one another as a sort of collective consciousness is extremely relevant to what we’ll discuss here in this book. In fact, the idea that we are constantly engaged in forms of telepathy with one another is a crucial element of where I believe our species is going as we become progressively more aware of our collective mind, universal soul, and kinship with one another. As our oneness becomes ever the more apparent, the concept of telepathy might spring to the forefront. Put simply: once humans evolve, maybe we become more telepathic?

So I want to begin this book by acknowledging that such an evolution has already occurred.

It occurred back when the printing press was invented. Back in the day when all we had were dinosaurs compared to the machine I use today, human beings began to write down and share their ideas. Using Stephen King’s explanation of writing, it would seem that this might be the original form of telepathic communication utilizing technology. Today, the internet is much the same. 24/7 we can find out what’s “on the minds” of our friends, acquaintances, long lost friends, and complete strangers. We can even get a bird’s eye view into the brain of President Donald Trump pretty much whenever we want, thanks to his overactive Twitter feed. In a sense, we can communicate telepathically with one another already using the internet.

Consider this: you and me (and our iPhones) are lost in the Amazon. We encounter an uncontacted tribe. Not wanting to scare them, we decide to text one another instead of speaking english with one another. As we are approached by a friendly tribesman, we pull out our phones.

You: “Hey Paul, what should we do?”

Me: “Uhmmmm… Let’s say hello!”

We then both nod at each other and greet the tribesman. The rest of the encounter goes on as such. Let’s pretend we both go our separate ways quickly (maybe he had to get to a date or something). Later that night, the tribesman returns to his people and recounts how he encountered two beings from the future who communicated telepathically through a strange handheld device. However, the tribesman noticed they were always in sync with each other thanks to their strange communication methods.

Now, obviously this is a silly example. However, you hopefully see the point I”m trying to make. If an uncontacted tribe hypothetically spied us talking to each other over text message (or whatsapp/wechat/facebook/telegram/voxer/insert new chat app), they would assume we had unlocked some secret of telepathy.

And they would be correct!

However, here in 2019, we don’t see it that way. We think of telepathy as a sort of etheric thing that happens in some invisible world where we cannot see. What we forget is that we have already created an invisible world through 4G LTE, radio waves, and all the other ways humans have discovered to invisibly connect us all together. 

In a sense, we have not realized just how far we have come in our quest to survive against the elements. Suddenly, we find ourselves poised to create new inventions using artificial intelligence, quantum computing, artificial reality, virtual reality, blockchain, spaceships, self driving cars, self driving SEMI TRUCKS, the internet, solar power, nuclear power, and whatever else gets invented before I finish this book. Meanwhile, humans are making new advances in medicine to include the psychedelic plant medicines like ayahuasca, psilocybin, cannabis, mescaline, and a variety of other ancient plant teachers that date back tens of thousands of years. Finally, here in 2019, we are starting to put pieces together and realize the potential of these powerful plant teachers. Meanwhile, researchers are inventing and finding new ways to advance medicine into the realms of genetic engineering, cloning, cybernetic limbs, and advances in the destruction of plagues like cancer or alzheimers. In case that wasn’t enough, most humans in the modern world are gravitating towards a more holistic existence with nature where we eat organic (expensive) food, wear comfy (expensive) lululemon yoga pants on our way to yoga class (expensive), and enjoy more active pursuits like rock climbing or emerging sports like Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Obviously, this is not everyone. However, such possibilities exist today in just about every modern city. If you spend some time in just about any modern city in the United States or Europe, you realize there’s an almost inexhaustible list of things to do around town. In fact, it’s so many things to do that many people never start.

So why is it that we exist in this state of heavenly possibility and yet so much of the world seems to be hell?

Why do only a privileged few seem to enjoy life’s supposed happiness?

What makes humans truly happy?

This book has several different purposes. My intent is to do the following:

  1. Open your mind to new ways of thinking about Earth and humans in 2019.

  2. Open your mind to new ways of thinking about Earth, humans, and the future.

  3. Create art.

Number 3 has proved tricky for me. You see, if you were to hop on over to my house for a bowl of cannabis and some coffee, you’d find me perfectly able to articulate and discuss all these ideas until you begged me to stop. However, as mentioned before, I’ve struggled to put them into a book. It’s odd because I was always a very good writer in school and always enjoyed writing very much. Given what I know about goal setting, entrepreneurship, and self-motivation, I know that not writing this book means that there’s something inside of me that is resisting its release. Maybe some internal demon that must be fought before this great work can be finished? Perhaps some test I must face so that I can achieve my dreams and change the world? Seems to make sense that the great hero would have to face a struggle enroute to the objective. Indeed, I have faced many struggles in life but one of the greatest internal battles has been the writing of this very book.

Despite this line of reasoning, the mushrooms told me a different story.

Writing is meant to be art.

In school, we are taught to cite sources, research external viewpoints, and include plenty of documentation as to where you got all your ideas. I was taught things like avoiding using words like “thing” because they’re not proper. When writing a book, I was trying to fit inside the confines of those rules in an attempt to help me write a compelling book that people would actually read.

Now I understand that life works differently.

We are meant to explore and be creative in our works. Our original intent was to be free, to have liberty, and to trust our intuition.

Therefore, I will only be writing using information off my head or directly in front of me. That is not to say that I won’t cite sources to backup arguments but I might instead do something more like this:

Descartes once said “I think therefore I am”.

To be honest, the actual quote is a bit different. I’m not sure exactly where Descartes originally wrote down those words and I probably will not have the time, energy, or zeal to go and figure that out. However, I will give him credit and I think he will understand if I leave it there. That being said, I do have a pretty extensive library of books behind me and I’m not above breaking out the good ol’ bibliography skills I honed as a history minor in college.

If you are an editor, publisher, or someone who knows things about books that I do not know and I might need to know some of the things you know, then I hope you get in touch so that I can know those things as well.

However, moving forward, I will regard this as a work of art rather than written word. I intend to take any and all creative liberties to include the occasional ingestion of plant medicines… if you get what i’m saying.

This book is dedicated to Jessie, Lianne, Mom, Dad, Lydia, Bethany, Edison, Audie, Allison, David, Michael, Joe, Rafael, Dave, Hagan, Justin, Jeremy, Sunstar, Baguira, Glorfindel, Grey Sister, Chelsea, Sofia, Gandalf, Alex, Mike, Miles, Zach, Jamie, Ryan, Khail, Jax, Rachel, Shiva, Jack, Melissa, Ash, Melanie, Celina, and all those who have supported me in my journey.

Thank you to those who have come before and those who I have watched from afar but never met: Jesus, Buddha, Gandhi, Martin, Alexander, Imhotep, Akhenhaten, Manly, Terrence, Joe, Elon, Carol, Louise, Yogananda, Tim, Robert, Aubrey, Duncan, Ryan, Jeff, and all others I’m forgetting.

But most importantly: this book is dedicated to the higher self. To the divine within us all.

The Aten.

The All.

May the words intended for me to write come through me here in the creation of this art.

Sincerely,

-Paul Tokgozoglu

Mansfield, MO, November, 2019

Mountain

My “Why”

(Or: Why this book exists and why should you read it)

Let’s stop and address the question that’s probably on your mind right now:

“Should I keep reading this book?”

Damn… I mean, you only JUST made it through the introduction…

Just kidding. I totally understand: I have this wonderful magic trick that I do where I buy a ton of books, never read them, and end up giving them away to friends. Most of the books I purchase go unread. Usually, I just flip open to random pages and read wherever my eyes are drawn. Rarely do I read one of my books from start to finish. If I do, it better be a goddamn impressive book. My girlfriend Jessie is convinced that I buy books as house decorations rather than actual reading material.

I’ll assume that the same is true for you!

You probably don’t finish most books you start.  If you do, then hats off to you! Go throw yourself a book reading party! You’ve earned it.

Maybe you even beat yourself up over the fact you don’t read most of your books???

No worries! Personally, I think books are meant to be read differently than how our public school systems and colleges tell us they need to be read.

Let’s do a quick practical exercise together that might make this book easier to read:

Step 1: Pause and take a breath.

Step 2: Bookmark this page of the book so you can come back in a moment.

Step 3: Turn to a random page of this book and read it. Go ahead… Do it… NOW! 

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TURN TO RANDOM PAGE

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(I get it. You're reading the online version and this exercise doesn't make as much sense... It'll make more sense when it's a finished book... Anyways, you get the point... ;) )

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Come back when you are done.

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Back? Ok, let’s move on!

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Step 4: What did you notice? Where were your eyes drawn? What thoughts, images, and emotions were brought up for you? What did you learn in that brief moment of however long you read?

Perhaps that is the only message you will ever need from this book?

Maybe it is OK if you just use this particular book as the one where you turn to random pages? As the author, I’m down with that. After all, that’s how I read most books. I just turn to random pages and read until I’m bored. I’ve found that, if a book is good enough, you should be able to get all the inspiration and more you might need in your own intellectual pursuits from just glancing at a few pages. If you’re reading the right books, you will probably need some time to digest and stew over whatever you just read.

This book might be one such book for you. If that’s the case, no worries! Don’t get discouraged. This is a long ass book and you’re a busy person living on planet Earth as we rocket through space together, barely holding on. I get it.

However, if you are like most people, you probably intend to read this book from start to finish. Before we get into all of that nonsense, I want to take some time and explain a bit about what you’re going to read.

You’ll quickly find that the first part of this book is an autobiography. Since I’ve already declared that the topic of this book is human evolution, a logical question would be “Why do I need to read this dude’s life story to learn about evolution?”

Well, a few reasons:

One: I’ve found all my favorite books were semi-autobiographical blended with other topics like strength training, philosophy, or self-help… I figured that if all MY favorite books were like that, perhaps yours are as well. Put shortly: People like stories. Jesus taught in parables for a reason. They’re a more interesting way to teach and learn.

Two: I’m going to dive down some pretty wild rabbit holes in this book and I feel it’s important to share my story in its entirety to help you understand the impact of certain experiences on my life and how they might relate to you in yours. Additionally, I think it’ll help back up some arguments if I explain the experiences that I have had related to certain organizations. 

Three: I have found it is a lot of fun and helps me process the last few years. In a sense, this book is as much a  diary as it is an autobiography, work of art, or work of nonfiction. Many of the thoughts that I will share with you in this book are new to me as much as they are to you. Indeed, I’m sure I will have many revelations and epiphanies as I’m writing this book in the same way I hope to inspire you to experience in your own world. Such it is with humans: we build together and explore as a team. In a sense, this is our purest essence. We are brought back into that divine origin of one united whole. Our inspirations build upon each other and eventually create empires, industries, and systems of love or terror. So we continue here.

I hope that my story can aid you in yours. I intend not to come across as a self centered individual although I am going to be writing at length about my life. I think you will see (if you keep reading) how these stories apply intimately and deeply to your life and the lives that we all carry together here in this world. The more that my story grows, the more I feel we are all living ONE story. Together, we overcome the same limiting beliefs and heal the same wounds across an infinite number of stories, archetypes, and characters we choose to swim through in life. Let us swim together and I’ll help you see how your story might benefit from integrating what I have figured out in mine.

This is fundamentally a book/compendium on human evolution. You will find that we discuss a lot of topics that make average people uncomfortable. For example: religion and politics. I feel as if the whole concept of “we don’t talk about religion and politics” is one of the core issues at the root of our world and why we have the sorts of problems that we do.

Religion and politics are two of the most important things.

They feed into all other walks of life.

When you say “Don’t talk about religion and politics”, what you are really saying is “Don’t talk about man’s quest for higher spiritual purpose and don’t talk about the systems by which man has developed to live together in peace and harmony”.

What else is there to discuss?

To be honest with you, reader, I’m not sure I know how to talk, write, or think about anything that does not eventually involve religion or politics in some way.

“Do I want to have a chicken burrito?”... “Yes”... (Paul buys burrito). *Before eating* “Thank you god for this delicious burrito”...

It’s hard not to include religion in your life when burritos are so damn good. 

The gratitude is just overwhelming. Who created such a wonderful concoction? Who was it that wove the threads of rice, tortilla, and guacamole into the minds of men? What noble chicken offered their life so that I might live?

You see what I’m saying?

This is just how I am!

I’ve found that a lot of folks find it “triggering” to be around someone who embodies such a conscious willingness to spar in political or religious debate.

However, what I hear most of the time is that I’m refreshing to be around. 

Apparently, there’s a lot of people in this world who feel the way I do about religion and politics and don’t speak their minds as bluntly. I figured someone should write a book on the topic, especially since both topics are so deeply interwoven with my own favorite topic: human evolution.

In other words: I’m building to something here people…

It’s not that I just loooove sharing the details of my life. In fact, quite the opposite. I’m typically a pretty private person, more so than even most of my friends know.

You may find while reading that I am not particularly nice to certain well-respected and established organizations. For example: the Christians, the military, and certain world governments.

Before we get into all that, I want to make a few things abundantly clear:

I don’t have a vendetta.

I don’t have a grudge.

I don’t hate the government, the military, the church, or any particular person I encountered during my time with any such organization.

I have no enemies.

I’m overwhelmingly grateful for all the experiences and people that have led me to the point where I am at today. If I hadn’t experienced pain, trauma, and frustration during my life, I would not be the person I am today. Since I love myself and accept myself fully, it would be illogical and remiss if I felt any sort of way towards any particular organization or person.

I don’t hate Christians. I want to help them understand this Jesus person even better. I want to introduce them to the Jesus I’ve found here in Missouri. He’s different than the one I learned about in Sunday school.

If you’re a Christian reading this, I love you. You are safe. Thank you for holding my hand and taking some steps into the unknown. I want you to know something important: I know you have doubts about your faith and maybe you’ve always heard that “it’s OK to doubt… that’s just a part of the process”. If you’re still reading this book, I want to assure you that doubt is indeed an important part of the process. The Christians are right. However, I found that my doubt led me towards certainty and truth and away from the lies told by the Christian church.

The real Jesus and God powers at work in this world are far more profound, much more close, and far more real than my youth pastor dreamed.

I love Jesus. He’s the man. The dude is one of my heroes and I hope to embody him in all walks of life, across all archetypes I might play.

I’m not necessarily writing about the Christians that I experienced personally in my life. I have come to recognize that they were just the manifestations of my own internal limiting beliefs at the time. In other words: I would’ve created those relationship dynamics anywhere in space or time… It was simply what I chose to experience in life at the time. What’s more is that many of the Christians I grew up around have also left the church and we have stayed in touch. I’m certainly not alone in my journey and my story is nowhere near uncommon.

When I write or talk about “Christians”, I refer to the force of fundamentalist Christianity that manifests itself as the Catholic Church, the Christian Orthodoxy, the ‘Youth Group’ movement in America, and any similar organization who attempts to control the actions of others via the Christian belief system. If you poke around, you will find that such organizations are unfortunately in the majority of Christian organizations worldwide. Again, I completely understand that there ARE plenty of wonderful Christian organizations doing great things. However, from my experience and the experience of many others, such Christian organizations are in the minority.

Put more bluntly: I’m not writing about any Christian person in particular. I’m writing about systemic organizations at the macro level and their effect on civilization. If you’re someone I met during my time in the Christian church, I have no grudge and I’m sure we would have a hug and a great chat. In fact, I hope we meet soon and discuss these matters in person!

The same goes for politics.

I don’t hate Democrats, Republicans, or anyone else. I’ve existed on both sides of the political spectrum. These days, I lean more Rawlsian. Personally, I don’t believe the “perfect” political system has yet to be created. In fact, we will explore the topic of an ideal political system later in this book. Let the record show: I wouldn’t call myself a communist/socialist/marxist or whatever other names old white people in America might call me if I suggest we could use some free health care. It seems quite clear from posterity that we will need something more evolved than communism/socialism/marxism to really help people and move our society forward. Although Marx and Engels were wonderful and respectable philosophers in their own right, their theories are antiquated and no longer fit for 2019. If anyone is still attempting to directly apply their theories today, that individual or organization is simply not paying attention to the ways in which the internet has reshaped our civilization. I would say the same to anyone holding onto un-evolved forms of capitalism.

I hate systemic organizations that imbue us with hatred, low self esteem, and an enslaved mindset. We should all hate them. Instead of hating individuals, let us direct that energy towards the organizations and systems created by our ancestors long ago. With that energy, we might dismantle such engines of death and leave ourselves in a much nicer reality. 

There are unfortunately many such organizations in this world here in 2019.

Let’s expose them and share how they are holding us back from a more beautiful world. If we work from a place of greater collective understanding, we can easily overcome such organizations with peace, love, and ease. There does not need to be some bloody revolution. There need not be a coup. In fact, such stratagems would just land us back at square one. If we live by the sword, we die by the sword. The master’s tools will never dismantle the master’s house.

Humanity has evolved and no one noticed. We have already achieved a heightened state of awareness in our collective consciousness and it is a scary place to be. We are moving into a story where we can feel the energy of life around us and how we are woven into the fabric of space. When you live such an existence, it is easy to be good because you can tell how you are energetically tied with all people, all things, and all of life around you. When such is your experience, you understand that reality is consciousness vibrating.

If what I just described sounds foreign from your personal experience, I would like to invite you to open your mind to the possibility that you are not fully aware of your connectedness with the world and the universe as a whole.

This book is the invitation into an unknown and somewhat unexplored world, never fully shared with the uninitiated.

Here’s a few more things you should know about me before continuing:

I’m what they call an “occultist”. The common misconception about people like me is that we worship Satan, practice black magic, and sacrifice animals. Nothing is further from the truth. In fact, these are stereotypes and lies propagated by the religious orthodoxy in order to keep people away from studying esoteric or occult topics. In actuality, occultists like me pride ourselves on practicing what we call “Hermetic Philosophy.” Basically, we enjoy talking and holding space for each other to have epiphanies and breakthroughs using conversation as a medium. Every so often, we practice ceremonial magic as a way to further solidify the power of intent. Typically, no higher powers are consulted during such ceremonies. Instead, they are a focused session of willpower between like minded humans. I’ll get into all of this in detail during the book.

This is not to say that no occultists practice black magic or demonic arts. Those individuals certainly exist. I have met several and will write about them in this book. However, I am certainly no such individual and I keep my distance from those who are.

“Occult” means “secret” or “initiatory”. The word “esoteric” is similar. I’ll be using both pretty much interchangeably. “Initiatory” implies that there are certain secrets of the teaching that are only made available to initiated members of said organization. Secrets are kept to preserve the organization and ensure that powerful magic is only shared with those who will wield such power responsibly and ethically. 

On normal days, occultists don’t tell people they’re occultists. Back during the Spanish Inquisition and such events, people like me were tortured and brutally killed by the Christians. If I existed just a few hundred years ago, I would literally be risking my life in just about any country in the world if I shared this information. Thanks to our collective freedoms and changed beliefs about religious freedom, people like me can now live and share more openly.

If you are a fellow occultist, you might also be triggered in the reading of this book. In fact, you might get triggered more than the Christians who read this book. I will be sharing information in this book that is considered “initiated secrets”. Such information is often times never written down. The information is often shared only lip to ear. Master to student. Direct communication. This is how the secret societies and initiatory practices of this world are kept secret and safe. They are simply never written down.

My intuition has led me to believe that the time for secrets is over.

Going forward, secrets will only hurt us and cause more despair. Where our species is headed, such practices no longer make sense. It is time.

I understand that there are some people in this world who would simply never read a book written by an “occultist”. In fact, my old Bible study leaders would have told you that simply reading a book like this one is a terrible risk. After all, “the devil always appears as an angel of light” or whatever the fuck metaphor they’re using nowadays.

To further illustrate the misfortune of these lies, it is important to express that the types of individuals who are warned about books like this one are usually the individuals who need to read such a book the most.

If you are such a person who is considering putting this book down because I’m an “occultist”, please know that I actively choose to only work with energies of light, love, and peace. I do all I can to embody the spirits of Jesus Christ, King Arthur, and similar energies. In other words: just because I’m a student of what you might consider “occult”, does not mean that we do not work with the same deities or energy signatures. We could very well be climbing the same mountain from alternative routes. I believe it is time we begin climbing together because the mountain has gotten quite steep and dangerous, mainly because we keep on refusing to climb together.

I have no intent to mislead you down a dark path. In fact, I am not even sure where one would find such a path as I have never taken it myself. If you find such a path, I recommend you avoid it and follow me into the light.

Too often, religious fundamentalists choose to not engage with new belief systems because they are afraid of becoming corrupted. As a Christian youth, I was taught to not read the Quran, study Hinduism, or learn about Buddhism because such pursuits would lead me away from God. After all, one of the ten commandments is “do not worship false idols”. Apparently, reading a book about the Buddha counted.

Study of Satan or anything to do with the occult was deemed completely inappropriate, pure evil, and highly unrecommended.

To such individuals, I would say the following: if your Jesus/Buddha/Mohammad/etc. Is really so strong and powerful, can they not protect you from whatever information I am going to share in this book? After all, if you take the time to actually read the Bible, you’ll find that Jesus banished demons like it was nothing. He didn’t give a fuck. Even if I WAS trying to mislead and manipulate you, couldn't Jesus protect you from such things while you read? He is claimed to be all powerful, after all. 

In martial arts, a “red flag” that you’re working with a bullshit instructor is if they discourage you from training at other gyms.

I see it all the time in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu training…

Coaches who discourage their athletes from visiting other gyms to train. These athletes are given any number of reasons for why their coach would advise them to stay away from the neighboring gym. However, it is oftentimes all to hide the truth: the other gym is better than the one you’re currently training at, and the coach knows it!

That slimy instructor knows that you’ll leave his dojo the moment you go and get a taste of real training with real savages. When you go into that gym and get destroyed by athletes far superior to you, you’ll usually either join the coach making excuses or you’ll go train with the better team.

The coach knows this. If they’re a good coach, they will want you to visit other academies. They will want you to go kick everyone’s ass. If they’re a good coach, you WILL go kick everyone’s ass. Then, the opposite might happen: those students might just start coming and training at your school.

This isn’t always the case. However, I’ve seen it happen often enough to know that it is a real dynamic in the martial arts world.

If you’ve been led to believe you need to be scared about “the occult”, ask yourself a hard question:

Maybe your pastor/parent/teacher/priest/guru is just one more shitty martial arts teacher scared of what you might do if you found out the truth?

Perhaps not. Perhaps you will read this book and counter every argument I make with a well chosen parry from a special verse in a sacred book of your own. If that’s the case, then that is awesome! I hope we connect in person someday and have the opportunity to learn from one another. I surely do not know everything.

All that I am asking is that you engage. You do not have to agree with me. You do not have to believe my words. I ask that you place the majority of your attention on your own thoughts, feelings, and emotions that come up when you read these words.

If you get triggered by something I write, ask yourself “why?”

If I challenge a belief that you have and it makes you uncomfortable, ask yourself “why?”

Search for the deeper roots to your problems and you will find the answer.

Another bit of info about me: I’m on the autism spectrum. I’ll explain the details of this later in the story but I feel it might give you some insight into how my mind works about things.

This is not a self-help book. If you came and asked me for advice, I would point you towards your intuition, your own life experiences, and the books that find you. These days, I try to avoid giving advice unless asked.

Instead, I seek to explain for you the phenomena in your life.

I want to clarify for you where the human species is going.

Maybe I can answer some of those questions you never knew you had.

Back in college, they taught us about thesis statements. A type of declarative statement that goes at the end of the introduction and explains clearly what the author is attempting to argue. In literature class, I learned about how books oftentimes include a thesis statement early in their opening. We were taught how to scan for the “thesis statement” and even tested on whether or not we could correctly identify what our teacher felt was the “thesis statement” of the book. Although it was a bit silly, I do appreciate the sentiment. If this book is ever studied in some sort of college course, here’s the thesis statement. You’re welcome.

The human species evolved and no one noticed. We are entering into a more unified state of wholeness that is causing confusion in our world in the same way it would be confusing to collectively jump blindfolded through a wormhole together. We are shifting collectively away from a world of pain and moving into a world of affluence, ease, and joy. All that stands in the way is ourselves, our beliefs about the world, and a ton of karmic baggage that we can easily clear if we really tried.

So why should you read this whole book?

It might end up being the best guidebook to the story of where this species is heading.

Only one way to find out.

Thank you so much for reading. I love you. Be safe and serene.

-Paul Tokgozoglu

Mansfield, Missouri, December, 2019

PS. The intent for this book is that it help transmute the energy of the Bible by using it as inspiration for how this compendium is put together.

I’m not sure if any of this will make it into the book (it did) but it feels good to write today. I’m currently writing this part on my phone, on the google docs app, as my girlfriend drives us across state lines en-route to see family. Isn’t it a great moment to be alive in 2019? Technology can inspire and promote such change across the collective and it’s amazing to see it unfold.

Anyways, onto our story…

France

PSALMS

AKA: POETRY

I have a trove of poetry that I have never shown to anyone.

Here is something I wrote in 9th grade.

It's called "Ninth Grade Crap"


Look around your room.

What do you see? 

Can you see the wasted life you lead? 

Can you see the agony of your world? 


How can men die in another place 

And you not see the purpose

What can I say for you? 


Don't you see the torment? 

Don't you see your purpose? 

With whom can I compare you? 


This is why you don't see me

This is why you don't hear me 


And then I'll say to you “hello” 

But you wont respond to me 

And then I'll say to you “hello” 

And you’ll shake your head and continue on your way


Look around your room 

With hatred in burning eyes 

With whom can I compare you 

Look around your room

With no life in your stare 

Even though I say to you hello

Bible

Here's me, age 14, reading the Bible at a church conference in Baltimore, MD. 2006.

Stan

Here's me, age 17, playing Satan in a skit on a missions trip in England.

PART ONE: A VERY INTERESTING STORY


CHAPTER ONE: ANACALYPSIS

Once upon a time, in a land called Kansas, there was a man called Yalcin. Yalcin was 17 year olds. He had just arrived on a flight from Turkey. He had a backpack, poor English, $100, and a bunch of trauma due to terrorist threats against him and his family thanks to unrest in Ankara where Yalcin had grown up. Through years of hard work and personal fortitude, Yalcin eventually earned two masters degrees, taught himself how to speak around seven languages (including English), and poised himself for success in the American workforce as a young man.

PS. Yalcin had also become a devout Christian.

Also, once upon a time, in a land called Chicago, there was a woman called Laura. Laura had just turned her life around after a decade of drug abuse and a traumatic childhood and she was now putting herself through veterinary school. Through years of hard work and personal fortitude, Laura had brought herself back from the brink of severe mental health issues and poised herself for success in the American workforce as a young woman.

PS. Laura had also become a devout Christian. 

One day, at a conference for devout Christians, Laura and Yalcin met through a series of magical events. Long story short: Yalcin walked in on Laura in a towel as he was helping her new roommate move into the dorm room. Yalcin had only met the roommate shortly before this encounter.

Long story short: the two fall in love and get married. Things are great for about a year and a half and then life started to get very interesting.

I was born to Yalcin and Laura Tokgozoglu in Bloomington, Indiana, in 1991. Upon my birth, my parents signed my birth certificate which meant that I became an American citizen. Through this incredible story of personal courage, hard work, divine blessings, and depressing times, I somehow made my entrance into one of the most powerful civilizations the world has ever known.

Immediately, I became one of the richest people in the world. Despite being "lower-middle-class", I was well above most newborns in developing nations. Suddenly, I was protected by the most powerful military on Earth. For days, I was cared for by a team of elite doctors dedicated to my well being. Despite all this, I would still grow up to be an un-sufferable and ungrateful asshole until my first mushroom trips in the Spring of 2017.

My childhood had a very high quality of life. Thanks to the influence of the fundamentalist Christian church, my siblings and I were homeschooled. My parents would have two daughters: Lydia and Bethany. We would all be homeschooled until we went off to the confusing adventures of college. We were poor until I was seven and then my dad got a great job working for the US government. I existed in a state of ignorance and bliss that I will never know again. I was sheltered from all severe harms, fed high quality foods, and always covered by health insurance. Truly, I was blessed.

Homeschooling was (and still is) amazing. It allowed me to be more creative with my time, my energy, and the creative projects I’d pursue. Now that I’m 28 and engaged in full time entrepreneurship, I realize that my early childhood comic business was just a precursor of the actual media company I am building with my team.

Most of my childhood involved the church. Here was my schedule for the week:

Sunday: 

9-11am: Go to church. Meet with friends. Eat donuts in church parking lot or walk to nearby donut shop. Get fat.

11am-1pm: Church. Rock concert. Jesus. Music. Pastor. Sermon. “Anyone want to accept Jesus?”. Rock concert. Jesus.

1pm-3pm: Church band practice. I played guitar (not too well) and there were around 60 people in the church band because our youth pastor didn’t ever have the thought to say to people “Sorry the band has gotten too big and you aren’t very good at guitar”. 

3pm-5pm: Chilling at church. Eating food from the gas station. Jesus.

Monday:

All day: Homeschool

All evenight/Night: “Silly Skit” team practice at church.

Tuesday:

All day: Homeschool

All evening: “Serious skit” team practice (it was a different team than the Monday skit team…).

Wednesday:

All day: Homeschool

All evenight/Night: Bible study at a friends house. This is where the real brainwashing goes down and we learned about how masturbation is evil.

Thursday:

All day: Plot twist. Every Thursday my siblings and I would go to Cedar Brook Academy, a homeschool group in Maryland (where we lived). 

CBA was a Christian homeschool organization and every class began with prayer. Our high school school biology class focused a good deal of energy on teaching us how to successfully win the argument of “creationism vs. evolution”. Despite all this, CBA is where I met some of my very best friends who are still with me today, long after the religion left my bones. Shoutout GCEC. Shoutout to that corner where we would take "study hall passes" and chill. Shoutout to the study hall pass that I stole from CBA which sits somewhere here in my office.

Friday:

All day: Homeschool

All evening: “Outreach night”

If you grew up in the American Youth Group culture, you probably know what I’m talking about here: every Friday we would have a “coffee house” or a “game night” or a “lip sync contest night” or a “Karaoke night” or some other “night” that would actually just be a masquerade to get local kids interested in Jesus.

These would go LATE and would usually end up being a cry-fest as emotional music played for hormone-enthused and confused teens in suburban America. All the while, a 45 year old man manipulated these kids from a stage into getting down on their knees and saying a prayer where they acknowledge that they’re full of sin and they need salvation from an ancient Hebrew carpenter-turned-prophet. As they had just learned, such a prayer was needed lest they be burned forever in the fires of hell.

As a teenager, I loved it. I felt part of something bigger than myself and connected directly to a higher power. I would cry tears of joy watching these strangers who I’d never meet bow down on their knees and put their hand up as they asked for salvation. It was my reason for the season. 

Saturday:

All day:  Day off. Go to the mall with friends from Church.

As you can see, I was booked!

Things changed when I was 17.

I did the unthinkable as a Christian: Instead of simply accepting whatever my pastor said as truth, I began to actually read the Bible and come to my own conclusions about the text (god forbid).

It’s amazing what happens when you make that simple change internally. Instead of valuing the opinion of an outside “authority” figure, choose to value your own intuition and common sense first and heed the advice of others only if it supports you in following the instructions and guidance of that voice. In other words, rather than base my view of Christianity off my pastor’s opinion FIRST and mine SECOND, I chose to switch those roles. For the first time in my life, I began to value my own process of logical reasoning.

Why? Because I found that the words of Jesus in the Bible actually conflicted with the words of my pastor in church!

Imagine my surprise when I read the verses in Matthew where Jesus condemns public prayer! During a chat with his disciples, Jesus instructs them to go find a quiet place in solitude where they can pray alone. He states that public prayer is the domain of the pharisees and false teachers who were leading the Hebrew people away from God and into their own pocket books. If you read the words of Jesus on this topic, you will find that he is quite clear in his instructions and recommendations about prayer. Furthermore, if you examine the heroes of Biblical mythology, you find that Daniel, David, Solomon, Abraham, Moses, and most other figureheads practiced the same. In the story of Moses and the Burning Bush, Moses is alone with God. When Solomon asks God for wisdom, he is alone in prayer and meditation. When Noah receives instructions about the Ark, he is alone. In fact, this is oftentimes one of the most compelling parts of a good Bible story! The hero alone experienced God. When Moses goes before Ramses in Egypt, he has to convince Pharaoh that he really is an agent of the divine. No amount of public prayer will convince Ramses… It is only the instructions that Moses receives in private that make any difference at all. As I read the Bible myself for the first time, it dawned on me again and again that the true power of prayer only occurs when an individual is taking seriously the internal journey that prayer really represents.

I was seriously conflicted about this realization. At church, we only ever prayed in public. Of course, we were always encouraged to pray in private at homes but it was always implied that the real power of prayer was when we all did it together. In fact, for some reason, prayer that was done via microphone from stage seemed to be held as the most powerful for reasons unknown. Over the years, I had begun to feel more uncomfortable with public prayer. This discomfort began to happen when I realized that I gained a great deal of personal pride anytime I was "selected" to lead the group prayer sessions. 

It was weird. Whenever I had the ‘honor’ of leading a group prayer, I always made sure to articulate myself well, speak sincerely, and choose my words well. At first, I thought that I was doing this for God. However, as I began to know myself more, I realized that actually I was doing this to impress my fellow hormone-driven teenagers and (most of all) the youth pastor. Indeed, God really didn’t have anything to do with why I needed to ramble for so long and make sure I included lots of “Jesus, I just really pray that you light us all on fire with your love, father god” and other bits of nonsense that don’t actually make any sense. As I began to come to terms with this conclusion, I began to realize that I was not alone! In fact, all of my peers seemed to follow the same format. It was as if we all had the same “prayer script” where we filled in the blanks of our specific requests for Jesus that day. For whatever reason, it appeared we all had unconsciously concluded that including his name every other sentence was a good place to start.

These two messages of the church and Jesus himself were completely contradictory.

And this is where my doubt began!

This was such an obvious contradiction that I could not ignore the larger ramifications: if my church leaders didn’t know Jesus’ opinion on PRAYER, how could they possibly be trusted to really know his opinion on anything? 

Clearly, they had not taken the time to open their Bibles and actually read Matthew for themselves. Seeing as I had just crossed this milestone myself, it made sense that others were probably in the same boat. In the decade since these realizations, I have found that I am far from alone. In fact, the majority of ex-Christians that I have met all began the journey of losing their faith once they decided to actually read the words of Jesus for themselves and come to their own conclusions.

Prayer was just the start. It was a low-level aspect of Christianity for me to begin doubting. It quickly led on to other parts of the religion: up next on the platter was this concept of hell. 

All my life, I had been hearing about hell.

Maybe you've heard of it. Allegedly, it is this eternal pit of endless fire where the angel Lucifer was supposed to have "fallen" after a bout with God and the archangels. It had been explained to me at the age of three that this pit of fire awaited me if I did not repent and ask Jesus Christ to be my lord and savior. You see, we had grown up in a very fundamentalist sect of the “nondenominational” Christian church called Oak Ridge. In hindsight, these folks were a bit of a cult. They had many of the characteristics including a cult of personality around the head pastor. Young men in the church were encouraged to drop out of college and pursue missionary work overseas in order to “win souls for Jesus Christ”. Parents were taught to spank children who disobeyed because disobedience in children was evidence of Satan attempting to take hold. Pastors warned parents that beating us with wooden spoons was necessary if these demons were to be kept at bay. Against their better judgement, my parents spanked me and my sisters but eventually left the church once they had gotten on the better side of that particular issue. 

Hell had never made much sense. I had asked the common questions:

Why would a loving and all-powerful God cast his supposed beloved children into a lake of fire for the ‘sin’ of not knowing and accepting the significance of his son?

If you had several billion children, and 99.999999% of them were NOT Jesus Christ… Why did it mean so much if we failed to accept his forgiveness and sacrifice? A forgiveness and sacrifice that was only needed due to the existence of hell in the first place?

Why not just avoid or erase the creation of hell and invent and create a different system? After all, if God is truly “all powerful”, “all loving”, and “all present”, then couldn’t he simply reinvent the wheel since this one was clearly not ideal? This was especially confusing considering that pastors would explain that God actually did NOT enjoy this deal. 

Well, you see, these questions were all answered by my pastors and church ‘leaders’.

It was explained that hell HAD to exist because God had ALREADY given humanity the choice of heaven or hell, and we had said ‘no’. In the eyes of these Christians, God was offering mankind a clear choice: repent and accept the forgiveness of Jesus and I’ll let you live in the majesty of heaven. Otherwise, it’s the hellfire for you! However, by their reasoning, God MUST offer this choice because otherwise our choice is meaningless. We were asked to believe that God did not WANT to damn people to hell. Instead, he actually wanted everyone to enter the kingdom of heaven. Indeed, mankind had forsaken the gift of heaven back in the Garden of Eden. When Eve tempted Adam into eating the forbidden fruit, she doomed humanity to hellfire thanks to her choice to eat of the forbidden fruit and receive the knowledge of good and evil. Thanks to Eve, we are all fucked forever from the get-go. According to such Christians, we are born into this world doomed. By this reasoning, God is not necessarily ‘forgiving’ humans but rather allowing us back into a contract that our ancestors broke right from the beginning, shortly after they signed. Through the sacrifice of Jesus and his own divine mercy, God allowed humanity to make a new covenant wherein we are not doomed but instead allowed back into the Garden of Eden after we die. Why does God make such an offer? Well, because he’s just so damn nice! Let’s worship him and give thanks that he allowed us back into the “Garden of Eden” contract. Hallelujah.

Here’s the issue with this story:

It isn’t in the Bible.

Go read for yourself and find a verse where Jesus or God THEMSELVES lays out “the new deal” with humanity. If you can find me a passage in the Bible where the above narrative is laid out as clearly as I just did, by Jesus or the God figure, I will owe you a Wookie Life Debt. Truly, I will be impressed and it will put a huge dent in my understanding of Christianity developed over a lifetime studying the source texts themselves.

You will find that nowhere in the Bible does God, Jesus, or any particular prophet outline the details of this “new covenant” with mankind wherein a human must get on their knees, accept Jesus as their savior, acknowledge their own sin, and spread the ‘good news of great joy’ with other humans. Nowhere does it talk about how the punishment for NOT saying this prayer is an eternal and literal lake of fire wherein that individual will literally be burned forever.

This declaration is simply not in the Bible.

Anytime Jesus is clear in his teachings, it’s usually about “do not Judge” or “love your neighbor as yourself”... Stuff like that.

If Jesus and God really were all-loving and had our best interests at heart, would not Jesus have taken the time to outline the specifics of the new agreement and ensure such instructions were recorded inside of the text he was allegedly creating with his disciples?

Since he didn’t, if such a ‘new deal’ were to exist, wouldn’t Jesus and God actually be HUGE assholes for not outlining the ‘covenant’ and ensuring such an outline was passed down?

Well, Christians would argue “that’s our job! We are meant to share the word of Jesus with his new flock!”

Again, this would be great if Jesus had actually said this clearly.

No, instead, as he’s ascending to heaven at the end of his time on Earth, he tells his disciples to “become fishers of all men” and spread his “good news of great joy” to all peoples of the Earth. Although this all sounds well and good, it is some pretty damn vague instruction. 

Imagine if your Dad gave you vague yet extremely important information about an eternal soul contract he had enrolled you into with God and the Devil, all while he drove off into the sunset forever. He shouted the specifics of the deal out the window as he drove off. You and your brothers hurriedly jot down what you think he might’ve said on the nearest parchment. When you look back to ask questions, your Dad is gone for good.

That’s basically what Christians believed happened with Jesus and the disciples regarding this whole “fishers of men” bullshit.

Now, if a Christian were here in this room with me as I type up this argument, they might say a few things about what is said in the book of Acts, Romans, and similar books. Such books actually do have a bit more clarity and information regarding this “new covenant” with mankind and how humans are meant to act.

Here’s the problem: all of this was attributed to the apostle Paul.

If you study the history of the Christian Church, you’ll find that the apostle Paul is controversial to say the least.

To begin, he started off as a Roman who was in charge of persecuting Christians. Enroute to persecute some Christians, he writes in Acts that he encounters Jesus, repents, and is reborn as Paul. Now, post-Jesus, he is a Christian all-star who does a total reversal and works to spread the "word" of early Christianity.

The issue arises when we consider how the Apostle Paul was actually disliked and distrusted by most of the early disciples. His writings led to schisms in the early church that led away from a more mystical tradition and more towards the modern day forms of orthodox christianity.

His writings have shaped Christianity in ways that (I will argue later in this book) are not healthy, loving, or congruent with what Jesus actually taught. In fact, during the Reformation, Martin Luther would write that the Apostle Paul is the greatest corrupter of the words of Jesus to ever have lived.

I agree! If you’re a Christian, I challenge you to only use the words of Jesus (the ones some versions of the Bible highlight in red... yknow, to draw your attention to the more important parts of a book) to backup any arguments you might make about the existence of hell.

As a 17 year old kid, I went down these rabbit holes in my mind and in the religious texts themselves. I found the answer to be clear:

Jesus or a God character never talked about hell directly or literally and certainly never spelled out the terms of any “new covenant” they were enrolling mankind into accepting. 

(When I say "God Character", I mean the dude who spoke to Moses through the bush, the guy who chatted with Job and his buddies, etc.)

Christians came up with this story themselves somewhere along the thousands of years since the death of Jesus Christ. This narrative has emerged as the dominant religious narrative of the collective western culture, to include the Muslim world thanks to the influence of Abraham and Jesus in the Islamic faith. Why has this religious belief emerged as the dominant narrative? Why do humans hold onto this belief in a hellfire that is rarely discussed directly in the actual text? We will explore these questions in detail later in this book.

For now, back to my parents spanking me.

The ramifications of this realization were life changing.

If I did not believe in hell, I could not continue to be involved with the church. The explicit mission of our church was to save people from hell.

This all came to a head for me at a weekend church retreat when I was 16.

Have you ever been to an American church youth group retreat?

If the answer is no, let me break down for you what happens. Are you a parent to a kid who has ever come to you and said something like this? “My friend invited me to his church weekend getaway”...

Or, worse, are you an adult who was indoctrinated into a Christian cult that held weird Church weekend retreats regularly in an attempt to save local children from an alleged hell? 

That was me! Here’s what happens:

Typically, on Friday, the group of 200+ kids leave on expensive charter busses to go to some weekend getaway location usually a few hours outside of town. For us, there were two: Summit Lake and Rockbridge. Both were beautiful camps usually used for Boy Scouts or similar organizations. However, every so often, a certain Christian “community church” from one of the richest counties in the nation would rent out the place to host their BIG event of the year: conversion time!

The big event was Saturday night. At our church, we jokingly referred to the Saturday portion of the weekend as “the crying day”. Why? Because that is the night that our middle aged pastor would tell a room of preteens and teens about how there was this place called hell, and that this was presently their trajectory in life. He would only deliver this message after a full 24 hours of buildup to introduce the character of Jesus, the basic tenants of his teaching, and (of course) plenty of FUN! We would spend any of our time outside of “sermon” playing in the woods, playing football, and having a great time being kids. We did this because we were, after all, just a bunch of young kids.

When I think back on my time at these retreats, I remember the fun. For some reason, I’ve forgotten quite a bit of the brainwashing. I can only assume those words were probably just too fake for me to hold onto all these years. My thoughts and memories have since been replaced with far more rewarding lessons and joys.

However, I do remember a few moments from these sermons that really stand out. Our pastor was a charismatic leader and he certainly knew how to give a good oration. At the time, I practically worshipped this dude. I was constantly seeking his approval. As an adult, after years of therapy and self-development, I thought that I understood that I was reaching for the approval of my own parents. Now, in 2019, I understand that REALLY I was actually just reaching for the approval of myself. Once I changed that core internal belief and finally gave myself the approval that all people deserve, my relationship dynamics changed across the board. Such has been the case ever since.

On one such Christian retreat, said charismatic pastor gave a good oration. It was about the topic of hell. Before I tell you the actual message, let me explain the audience for this message: This particular retreat was geared more towards the church members themselves rather than the community. In other words: the ‘believers’ and not ‘the non-believers’. We called such events “inreach retreats”, as opposed to “outreach retreats”. Typically, inreach events happened at Summit Lake and outreach ones happened at Rockbridge. I could never figure out why. Perhaps Summit Lake did not consent to serve as a recruitment ground for a cult whereas they didn’t have an issue with said cult hanging out at their land, not recruiting? I’m sure the actual reason is much simpler. Inreach events involved further indoctrination of those who were already on the inside. Outreach events were an attempt to recruit new members. These “members” and “new recruits” are between the ages of 11 and 18.

During this particular sermon, our pastor said something like this:

“I want you to imagine you just died.

“When you die, you’re going to heaven! Congratulations. You accepted Jesus into your heart and you’re going up to the party.

“When you die, you see one escalator going up and another one going down…

“You start going up, feeling happy. And then, as you’re going up, you see your best friend from school… and they’re on the DOWN escalator!

“I want you to imagine how you would feel, seeing your friend headed down to hell to be burned alive forever…

“Thankfully, Jesus has given us the opportunity to prevent this from happening! Make sure you tell your friends about him and invite them to the next outreach event, yadda yadda yadda”.

I had to leave the room and go outside. In that moment, as a 16 year old, it sunk in for me that THIS was the message being delivered to 11 year olds in the room at that moment. It also sunk in that this was the SAME message I had been receiving all my life, and it clearly made no sense. Furthermore, what sort of a God would create such an obviously ridiculous system? Given the doubts I was ALREADY having, this sermon drove the nail in the coffin. My beliefs about hell were changed forever and I knew I could no longer be involved with this organization to the extent that I was. How could I possibly tolerate this terrible and horrific teaching being taught to young kids, including myself? I simply could not consent to being involved.

It really hit home in that moment that my pastor was engaged in a cruel act: teaching young kids that THEY bore the weight of God’s wrath, and that if THEY failed to convert THEIR friends, those beloved friends would be doomed to hell. What a terrible message for a young kid to hear. There were many tears on this particular “crying day”.

Even the fucking metaphor didn’t make sense! If I’m going up on the “up” escalator, why am I seeing people on the “down” escalator? Has my pastor never been to a mall and seen how escalators look when they’re next to each other?  That was just the start of my anger and confusion regarding this metaphor. Anger that still exists now as I write this message.

People have told me over the years not to be angry with Christians.

That I should let it go.

I have always argued the following:

It is OK and ADVISABLE to be angry, passionate, and argumentative about important issues that really matter.

Yes, I am extremely angry that Christians are actively teaching young children a terrible message about themselves. At this moment, kids are being indoctrinated into this same belief system using the same tactics and strategy used on me. Inside of this global religion, kids and adults are taught that they are scarred forever by “original sin”. This “original sin” manifests itself in countless terrible activities small and large. These individuals are told that they are responsible for manifesting as few problems as possible as a result of their “original sin”. In fact, it is often suggested that an individual manifesting too many problems may not have “really been serious” when they accepted Jesus into their hearts. After all, if the acceptance was genuine, why did the “sinful behavior” continue?

Now, I’m all for being virtuous. Later in this book, we will explore the words of Aristotle, John Rawls, Plato, and plenty of others who have contributed to ideas of morality and virtue. I’m all for the idea that I am responsible for my role in manifesting the greatest and highest affluence, ease, and joy for myself and all around me. In fact, I will be eagerly trying to convince YOU that YOU are just as fully responsible as me for your physical reality and all that you experience.

However, here’s where Christians have it wrong: we are not tainted by original sin. 

Humanity is not doomed from the get-go. Reality and the universe simply do not function in that fashion. Christians have misread the archetypical information inside of the Bible and instead claimed that it is a literal story. This is simply incorrect. Instead, the story of Adam and Eve is an archetypal story that you and I are playing out here in the present moment. In other words: we should look to the Bible (and all books) as a playbook for our lives here in the present moment, rather than a historical record. When reading ANY book, ask “what does this mean for me in my life now?”. You will find that you will always receive an answer from your intuition. THAT is how the Bible (and all books) are meant to be read (especially this one).

Put differently: When you read the words on THIS page, do not listen to what I am saying.

Instead, listen to the thoughts, feeling, and emotions that come up inside of YOU while you read these words.

THAT is the message that I am working to channel and convey.

Christians do not give themselves this level of authority. Instead, they say that the Bible is literal and that it is the “word of God”. It is a literal book that was transmitted directly from God himself through those he chose as his authors. Throughout history, according to “the church”, the best people to listen to about the Bible are pastors, priests, preachers, etc. They have been properly trained as guides along the path of understanding the Bible as a literal text and applying it to your life today.

However, here’s the issue: this very method of instruction rests on the flawed fundamental limiting belief that Christians are incapable of coming to their own conclusions about every word inside of the Bible, or any book. By that very definition, put forth by the Church themselves, would not the pastor/priest/preacher be on the exact same level as you and me in the crowd? If we are ALL tainted by original sin, why should we be able to trust the pastor? 

When I asked this question, I was told:

“Well, he went to school and was trained as a minister”... 

To which I said “Right, but weren’t those people also tainted by original sin?”

In other words: if original sin is true, then aren’t I just as credible as the pastor since we are both reading the same book and both tainted by the same original sin? If everyone on earth is fundamentally flawed, then we are all equals. We should therefore all have the same right to come to whatever personal conclusions we want about any book we choose. Likewise, we should all have the same room and space to share our thoughts and our findings regarding our spiritual journey, just like the pastor was doing. From my perspective, writing a book about such topics is a far superior way to convey such ideas and make a real impact on the world than striving to become the charismatic leader of a cult wherein you are unquestioned.

I was reading the same exact book as this pastor guy every night and I couldn’t find much on this whole “original sin” business, hell, or plenty of other things I was hearing about from this ever-less-credible pastor character. 

It’s enough to make a person think that maybe the whole thing was made up to control people and indoctrinate children (many of whom are later raped, kidnapped, molested, and abused in certain circles), or something like that.

When I heard aforementioned pastor character preach a ridiculous escalator metaphor on stage in front of hundreds of young kids (after leading them in group prayer, which I also knew was not what Jesus recommended), I was gone from the serious Christian path. Although I would not renounce Christianity formally until I was 22, I was done with the church and I was done with my pastor. I set out to find a new community. I would not find that community until here in Missouri in 2019.

The Jesus that I know welcomed and blessed children and told the adults to be more like them.

The pastors that I have met usually scold children and tell them to be more like the adults.

I realized that something was fucked up.

cba

Here's me, age 15, on "Olympic Night" performing in a "silly skit"

Guitar

Here's me, age 16, playing guitar averagely at Summit Lake

Bag

Here's me, age 15, wearing a trash bag at Rockbridge

PSALMS

AKA: POETRY

"Apostle"

by Paul Tokgozoglu, age 17

I am a herald of the new age. 

A prophet of sound. 

Music and god intertwine into one being and I am his apostle. 

My cause is to spread the words of enlightenment throughout the peoples of this world. 

Every new found word and ethereal vibration must be felt and engulfed by the listeners. 

My destiny is to provide them with the joys of their musical heart. 


My mission is large and my scope is broad. 

Like a sword in the hands of a great warrior, I will weave through this field of strife and deliver my message, clearly, to its recipient. May they forever digest the noise of my meaning. 


This is how I will serve the world.

white house

Here's me and my sisters (Lydia and Bethany) at the white house. I was 19.