Confessions? Please explain.

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25 Sep 2012 05:42 #74514 by SeanChing
Confessions? Please explain. was created by SeanChing
Here's what appears for "Bishop" under the ranks section of the FAQ:

Bishop
The fullness of Holy Orders.
Can ordain other ministers.
Can take confession under the seal recognised by law.
Can conduct liturgical ceremonies.
Is responsible for the moral support of the community.
Available to any TOTJO rank of Knight or higher.
Cannot be revoked.
Carries the title of Rev. as well as OCP as a suffix to their name.

What does this mean by "can take confessions"? Confessions to what? Sins? But, isn't that a Christian-exclusive concept? Or does this mean something else?

Has anyone actually asked a Council member/Bishop for this service? (Because I've never seen it brought up before.)

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25 Sep 2012 06:57 #74518 by Br. John
This is one of those things that needs an update with better language. It's not incorrect though. It's to emphasize that TOTJO clergy have the same recognition as a Roman Catholic Priest in regards to a serious private consultation. It's not just any conversation with our clergy. It must be a past act. If someone tells us they plan to do something in the future that could harm themselves or another we're obligated to report it to the proper authorities.

We have some clergy that are both Jedi and Christian and in that case it's the same as Roman Catholic confession or reconciliation.

Founder of The Order
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25 Sep 2012 08:09 - 25 Sep 2012 08:11 #74520 by Alexandre Orion
'Confession', in term and conduct, does not need better language (with all the respect that you are due, Maître), but updated understanding. Confession, as such, is not about 'sins' as such, nor about 'absolution' as in the avoidance of Eternal Hell. These were/are the dogmatic understandings. It is not a case of admitting the wrong you've done (though it could be) and thus being granted divine pardon as to not go to Hell.

On the other hand, it is exactly like that.

As Watts points out (when in doubt, always go back to the basics), our ego is something which we can neither 'accept' nor can we 'reject' it ; we may only observe it. Sin, as it were, is when we fall off the path and let the ego have too much to say. When, as we observe what our ego is doing to us, it gets uncomfortable, so to speak. It may not even concern any particular 'wrong-doing'. It is when our hearts are not in conformity to our minds (ego). In this way, the 'Hell' is personal ; absolution and it follows deliverance from it must also be personal - 'personal' meaning coming from within.

Confession then, is not just telling someone your sins. It is having a real soul-to-soul discussion - as Maître Br. John clarifies - in a private and confidential conversation with a trained cleric. Clerical training, as well as any other aspect of Jedi training, does not conform to usual (short-sighted) considerations of education, namely to just 'get it done' and 'get the diploma'. No, being trained as a cleric, and as a Jedi Knight, is to integrate these teachings and to live the experience of them. In this way, this is a service that we can purvey one to another as companions on our path(s). The clergy, therefore have had the teaching in order to recognise in our 'confessions' what the particular spiritual discomfort is stemming from and thereby suggest a remedy for it.

From time to time, I have 'confession' with Me Mark (this is not an advertisement for anyone, but only examples) because his philosophy, experience and knowledge are most often appropriate to the understanding of whatever the conflict between my feeling/thinking is. It is also very helpful for me to talk with Wescli, who is a very close friend, not yet clergy. And from time to time, I even have some really heartfelt conversations with my cat, Pâris. So, you see, 'confession' isn't about divulging your 'sins' to someone, as much as it is talking to the right person as honestly as you can so that you can perceive yourself in a more clear way and thus deliver yourself from your hell. One doesn't go to confession like one goes to the dentist ; one goes to confession to heal one's own spiritual ills ...

Confession is a very apt term. Let us please not change or "update" it.

Chaque homme a des devoirs envers l'homme en tant qu'homme.
~ Henri Bergson
Last edit: 25 Sep 2012 08:11 by Alexandre Orion.
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25 Sep 2012 11:21 #74526 by V-Tog
Replied by V-Tog on topic Confessions? Please explain.
I like what Alexandre said about confession.

Here is most of what I wrote about it for the Clerical Training...GM Mark's comment on what I wrote was 'Exactly' so I take that to mean that this is fairly accurate:

I have found the concept of confession quite interesting to investigate, as the Church that I have grown up in (Church of England) does not really have confession in an official form. Certainly not in the way that it exists in the Catholic Church. I was surprised at the extent of my ignorance about it.

Confession is technically the admitting of sins committed, which usually then results in the absolution of sins. This is achieved through admitting the sins in confidence to an ordained member of the clergy (here at TOTJO this would be Deacons, Priests and Bishops), who can grant forgiveness on behalf of their deity or religion. In some religions the priest taking confession will outline some kind of deed that the sinner must carry out in order to be absolved of their sins, which is known as penance. The confession remains between the sinner and the priest (and the deity, if there is one) and the priest is not allowed to disclose the confession to anyone else or act on what they have heard. The one exception to this rule is if the person confesses something that brings the priest to believe that they could bring harm to either themselves or someone else, and appropriate help or intervention for the situation can be sought in this eventuality.

I personally see confession within Jediism slightly differently. We do not have a list of ‘sins’ as such, nor a God that we ask for forgiveness. As a member of the clergy I would see my duty in relation to confession to be to be available to listen to anything that someone wished to tell me or talk to me about, and to offer advice and guidance to the best of my ability. I would still be bound by the laws of confession – that is, not to share the confession with any other parties unless there was evidence of some kind of harm.


Oh and Sean - you might be aware already but I couldn't tell from your post - any ordained member of Clergy can take confession. So it's not just Bishops, but also Priests and Deacons (but not Licensed Ministers).
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25 Sep 2012 12:08 #74529 by Jestor
Replied by Jestor on topic Confessions? Please explain.
Yes...

I look at it as a heart-to-heart talk...

We all do it for our friends all the time..

I listen, and offer other points of view... Sometimes advice...

Ever talk out loud to yourself, trying to figure something out? SOmetimes, that other person is a real help, and, as we are bound to keep secrets, we never tell...;) ...

It happens all the time...:)

On walk-about...

Sith ain't Evil...
Jedi ain't Saints....


"Bake or bake not. There is no fry" - Sean Ching


Rite: PureLand
TOTJO Council
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Current Apprentices: Viskhard, DanWerts, Llama Su, Trisskar
Former Apprentices: Knight Learn_To_Know, Knight Edan, Knight Brenna, Knight Madhatter
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25 Sep 2012 13:17 #74534 by ren
Replied by ren on topic Confessions? Please explain.
confession. now there's a foreign concept to me...

Convictions are more dangerous foes of truth than lies.
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25 Sep 2012 13:38 #74539 by Kalkho
Replied by Kalkho on topic Confessions? Please explain.

Jestor wrote: Yes...

I look at it as a heart-to-heart talk...

We all do it for our friends all the time..

I listen, and offer other points of view... Sometimes advice...

Ever talk out loud to yourself, trying to figure something out? SOmetimes, that other person is a real help, and, as we are bound to keep secrets, we never tell...;) ...

It happens all the time...:)


As a Catholic, I view confession as something more than a talk; You admit you have comitted a crime to another sinner, and you both pray to God, to the 'Judge of All' that He may forgive you. The essence here is that you are exposed, and, moreover, you are exposing your own self to God and attain forgiveness, no matter what you have done. It might seem a little psychological, but it's truly more than that, it's a little mysticism, at least to me.

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25 Sep 2012 13:59 #74544 by Akkarin
Replied by Akkarin on topic Confessions? Please explain.
I agree with Alex

'Confession' has come to mean 'Christian confession', because that's the only place you will probably here it referenced, but as Jedi we have a different take on it :)

'Confession' is a confidential heart to heart talk that allows you to tell someone something you otherwise would never tell anyone else with the confidence that they are forbidden to divulge the information (or even act on it - Christian Church)

Just an FYI, the laws regarding confession are different in each country so you should find out what they are depending on where you live

In the UK, confession (Priest Penitent Privilege) is not recognised at all so in a court of law you would have to answer truthfully (or refuse - not sure how that would turn out)

But to reiterate what Br John said, Ordained Clergy are not bound by confession (at this Temple) if you intend to harm someone or harm yourself or if you intend to break the law - though of course that might depend on the clergy person whether they would say anything)

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25 Sep 2012 14:22 #74549 by Alethea Thompson
Instead of understanding, counseling might be the better word. To most it comes off as something only a psychologist can do, but it's exactly what we call these sorts of talks with our leadership in the military world (counselings). I don't think it would impede upon the legal system, as long as it is understood that you aren't professional psychologists.
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25 Sep 2012 18:20 #74572 by Br. John
A past act is under the seal of confession. Talk of plans to do something in the future is NOT. TOTJO Clergy MUST take action to prevent someone from harming themselves or another.

Only priests and bishops have the ordinary power to take a confession. Deacon's and ministers might have the extraordinary power to do so but only if specifically granted. It's not automatic.

All clergy may spiritually counsel.

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