ON LOVE; PART MCCCXVIII
FIRST IS THE GREAT COMMANDMENTS: “The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these” (Mark 12:29-31).
WHAT THEN IS LOVE? In a general sense love is benevolence, good will; that disposition of heart which inclines men to think favorably of their fellow men, and to do them good. In a theological sense, it includes supreme love to God, and universal good will to men. While this IS from an older definition of Charity, which IS rendered in the King James Bible from the same Greek word agape which IS generally rendered as Love, we should amend our own definition here to include the idea that in the reality of Love a man will accord to ALL men ALL things that he would accord to himself and to say that Love IS our thoughts and attitude of the equality of ALL men regardless of their outward nature or appearance…that ALL ARE equally children of Our One God.
PLUS THE EVER IMPORTANT AND HIGH IDEAL TAUGHT TO US BY THE CHRIST: “Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them” (Matthew 7:12).
We ended the last essay with the final words from our selection from the Apostle Paul’s Epistle to the Romans. Our discussion on the eighth chapter begins with Paul’s words which ask the most important question of everyman regarding his spiritual pursuits, the question as to whether “the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you“. While the doctrinal Christian answers this in the affirmative based in the doctrinal teaching of his sect or denomination, the real answer IS NOT quite so simple as it invokes the Master’s words on just how that the Spirit can Truly “dwell in you“. Jesus tells us that “If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him” (John 14:23) and we should note that this IS essentially the same question and answer as Paul poses. The ideas should be seen in the same way albeit from different perspectives. A True affirmation to Paul’s question IS revealed in the way that the Lord “shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you” and in this we should understand that the mortal body will come to Life spiritually and express the Love and the Truth which flow from the Godhead and from the Soul. It IS this expression that will “mortify the deeds of the body” and it IS this same expression that results from the Presence of God in the Life of the man who “will keep my words“. Paul’s perspective IS that the man who Truly has “his Spirit that dwelleth in you” will express this in this quickening while Jesus’ perspective IS to teach men how that one can have that Spirit. In the convenience of the doctrines of men however both of these ideas ARE lost in their view that His Presence comes ONLY by grace and that nebulous faith through which the doctrinal thinker sees himself as having His Spirit without being so quickened as to express the Love and the Truth that IS God….without keeping His words which IS the True Way to His Presence. We should remember here that the reality of His Presence IS found in one’s realization of the Truth and the Love, which realizations must result in and ever increasing measure of their expression to the world. Repeating our selection from Romans we read:
“But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God. For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in
hope, Becauseexpectation that the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body” (Romans 8:11:23).
While we ended the last essay with the last words from the apostle, this was ONLY to draw upon the idea of “the redemption of our body” as a reference for us to the gospel story where Jesus IS “transfigured before them“. In both of these ideas we should try to see the reality of the Spirit and Soul of a man being able to fully overcome the carnal reality in which he lives and to show the fullness of spiritual control over not ONLY the carnal nature but over matter itself. It IS this Power that enables Christ’s miracles and his ability to instantaneously heal the carnal bodies of others and here we should try to see this same Power in the hands of Moses and several of the prophets of the Old Testament. Our greater point IS in the way that Paul shows us by steps the Way to this “redemption of our body” which in its effect IS the reality of the adoption, the Union of a Soul with his vehicle of expression, a Union through which the Power of the Soul flows through the Redeemed body of the man. We should remember here Vincent’s defining ideas on adoption; he tells us, quoting Mr Merivale, that: the adopted son of God becomes, in a peculiar and intimate sense, one with the heavenly Father (“Conversion of the Roman Empire”)4. This sense of Union IS founded in the meaning of adoption to the ancient Romans which Vincent tells us IS the placing of one in the position of a son. He continues to tell us that: Mr. Merivale, illustrating Paul’s acquaintance with Roman law, says: “The process of legal adoption by which the chosen heir became entitled not only to the reversion of the property but to the civil status, to the burdens as well as the rights of the adopter – became, as it were, his other self, one with him” 4. If we can carry this idea into our understanding of the apostle’s use of adoption we can then better understand his intent in our next verse where we read that “ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father“. This follows upon the idea that “if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God“, most of which we discussed in the last post. Here we should equate several ideas; first IS that we “through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body” which brings us to the second idea that in so DOING we ARE “led by the Spirit of God” which in turn shows us as “sons of God” under the banner of adoption, of becoming in a peculiar and intimate sense, one with the heavenly Father. Can we see the apostle’s point here and can we see how that the doctrinal ideas of being “sons of God” DO NOT equate with Paul’s spoken Truth. There IS a reality of becoming a Son of God which IS NOT related to one’s primary relationship with the Godhead, a relationship where every Spirit and every Soul IS ever One with God on his particular level of existence. Every Spirit IS ever One with that “One Boundless Immutable Principle; one Absolute Reality which, antecedes all manifested conditioned Being” while every Soul IS One with the Christ Principle, the Second Aspect of the Trinity. The reality IS in one’s realization of this Sonship as a man in this world; it IS this that IS basic idea behind Paul’s words saying “be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God” (Romans 12:2) as well as many other like sayings in the New Testament. While the idea of such realization IS NOT shown us as such, it IS indicated for us in Jesus’ words on His Presence and the Presence of the Holy Spirit in such words as “If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him“. We should understand that the Master IS speaking to His disciples as men and that His comments here ARE intended for everyman who may Truly Love the Lord as evidenced by keeping His words; it IS as men that this should be understood but NOT in a carnal sense as IS understood by most today. One CAN NOT prove that he has the “the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead, or that he IS “led by the Spirit of God” save for his works, his outward expression to the world. Jesus tells us this as He shows us that we can KNOW that “they are the sons of God” by the fruit that they bear as He warns about false teachers saying “Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them” (Matthew 7:16-20). Can we see the point here?
In the reality that everyman can claim to be “in Christ” we must trust in the words of the Master regarding fruit. It IS left for everyman to discern that fruit in others and here lies a problem: while the True fruit should be based in the words of the Master who tells us of and shows us True righteousness, most ALL define such fruit according to their own doctrinal bent. True righteousness, True fruit, IS NOT found in fiery sermons, nor IS it found in doctrinal worship; and it IS NOT in the ofttimes artful way that some preachers ‘bring’ others to Christ through their alter calls and evangelizing which merely bring others to a particular doctrine. Many Christian pastors and preachers measure their success according to the number of men and women who answer their alter calls and who then, if even for a brief time, consider themselves ‘saved‘. The True fruit IS a Life lived in accord with the teachings of the Master and NOT in any doctrinal terms; it IS this that Paul shows us in his words on “the fruit of the Spirit” (Galatians 5:22-23). When properly understood the apostle’s words ARE a picture of the expression of agape according to the Way that this IS taught by Jesus who tells us to “Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you” (Matthew 5:44). In this IS the reality of the Great Commandment that tells us that “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself” and the fullness of the Golden Rule that shows us that this sense of agape incorporates the activity of agape that Jesus shows us saying “Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them“. We should try to see how that these spiritual ideas of Life ARE Paul’s topic in our selection above as he tells us that “as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God“. When one IS Truly “led by the Spirit of God“, when “the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you“, it must perforce be expressed and it IS this expression that IS that fruit by which the True “sons of God” can be KNOWN. Paul makes this clear in words that ARE NOT understood by the doctrinal thinker as he says that those that ARE Truly alive, alive spiritually here in this world, ARE those that “do mortify the deeds of the body” which in effect IS the turning away from thoughts and attitudes of the self and ALL desires that ARE connected to Life in this world. We should remember here James words that began this discussion as he tells us “whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God” and understand that ALL thoughts, attitudes and actions that raise the prospect of self makes of one “a friend of the world“.
The opposite of being “a friend of the world” IS found in being ‘one with the heavenly Father‘ as Mr. Merivale defines the idea of adoption. While doctrines may dictate that ALL Christians ARE become “sons of God” by this idea of adoption, they DO err when we consider the deeper meanings of this word which Vincent shows us as that the new heir IS ‘became, as it were, his other self, one with him‘ 4 in his relationship with the adopter. To understand this we must at the same time understand how that Paul IS reflecting upon Roman law as he shows us this idea of adoption and the ensuing idea of the Unity of the man in this world with the Lord; and this through his own Soul and Spirit which ARE ever One with God. There IS NO room in this reality of adoption for the carnal ideas of a wayward son; Paul’s words ARE fully spiritual and the idea that as adopted sons “we cry, Abba, Father” must be understood in full spiritual sincerity. It IS this idea of spiritual sincerity that IS found in Jesus rhetorical question that asks “why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?” (Luke 6:46). Unfortunately this idea IS lost in the doctrinal view of the impossibility of DOING “the things which I say” and while this IS seen as impossible men DO take to themselves the rewards of DOING so. As Paul speaks of having “received the Spirit of adoption” we should try to understand this in context, a context that shows that the man who has thus received IS “led by the Spirit of God“, the man who can “through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body” which IS the result of one’s change of focus off of the things of the world and onto the things of God. We should note there that while Paul speaks here in absolutes, that IS that he speaks of and to those who have become a “sons of god” according to his context, there IS yet the matter of measure by which a man gains the fullness of the adoption, the fullness of the Union of a man in this world with God. There IS NO ‘light switch’ that changes a man; there IS his Repentance and then the continual striving to express the tenets of the True Religion that IS based solely in the words of the Master. Paul acknowledges this Truth in words that ARE NOT so appealing to the man in this world as ARE his words on ‘salvation‘ and although this idea of being ‘saved‘ goes undefined except by doctrinal precepts, it IS these that have become the choice of men through the ages. This IS easy to see and to understand when one can look away from their doctrinal leanings. Paul says that “if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live“; this of course requires that a man DO this to Live and we should understand this idea through Jesus’ words to the “certain lawyer” who KNOWS the heart of the law IS in the Great Commandments; the Master tells him in most simple terms that “Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live” Luke 10:25, 28). The sense of living in both these sayings IS the same spiritual Life that can flow through one’s form and the precursor to this sense of living IS the same as well. Can we see how that to “mortify the deeds of the body” and to DO the Great Commandments ARE synonymous ideas? Can we see that restricting the ideas of “the deeds of the body” to merely the gross carnal idea of sin IS NOT the intent; neither of the apostle nor the Master? What seems here to be difficult and even impossible in the minds of men IS but the change of focus onto the things of God and perhaps the biggest difficulty here IS DOING so in the face of others in the world that will NOT understand. It IS the ego and the vanity that IS Life in this world that prevents this for most men and, for those that can pull away from the illusion and the glamour, there comes the equally difficult part of KNOWING the True Path. Can we see this idea at work in the lives of men along paths that ARE NOT the True Path which IS governed NOT only by the austerity of the monk but also by the DOING of the most fundamental spiritual precept which IS the Great Commandments that put God and others before oneself in every circumstance, every thought, attitude and action.
Comparing this idea that “if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die” and the Way to Life in the mortification of the flesh to the words of the apostle that offer men ‘salvation‘ through the recital of words or the acceptance of church sacraments, we should be able to easily see why men have chosen this easier road as their doctrine with its nebulous ideas of faith and believing. Do men really believe that the apostle would leave us these two disparate ideas? Or DO we really believe that the doctrinal choice makes of a man one who DOES “mortify the deeds of the body” even in the grosser carnal themes which perforce include his thoughts and his attitudes as well as his actions? This IS however the doctrinal view as men assume the rewards that the Master and His apostles show us without DOING the necessary ‘work‘; their view IS based solely in their ideas of atonement and their idea that it IS the free gifts of God by which ONLY the Christian IS ‘saved‘. Add to this the idea of the adoption which doctrinal thinkers presume that they have as they call themselves “sons of God” and believe that they have the Presence of God active in their lives despite the Master’s words that show us that the way to this Presence IS found in keeping His words which IS essentially to “mortify the deeds of the body“. This IS the Truth presented to us by the trifecta of spiritual reality that IS a part of most every essay and while the Master’s words here ARE exceptionally clear, so much of the doctrines of men have chosen to relegate them to another time and to other people as they create, based upon some few words from the apostles, a new covenant that conforms to their carnal reality of Life. This IS a carnal reality that dictates the doctrinal themes that define Truth and Love in carnal terms and deflects from men the need to be a part of the True covenant of Jesus’ words and especially His words from our trifecta which we repeat here again saying:
- “If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:31-32).
- “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 7:21).
- “He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world? Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me” (John 14:21-24).
This IS the essence of the True Gospel that the apostles speak of, this and the reality of the Great Commandments which ARE the foundation for most ALL of the Master’s teaching. This IS NOT the doctrinal idea of gospel that interprets the words of the apostles into a theology that IS NO closer to the Lord than was the doctrinal approach of the Jews. It IS unfortunate that the constant push of doctrinal ideas over these many centuries have created an atmosphere where the doctrines ARE seen by most as the True Gospel despite the reality that the varied doctrines of men ARE ofttimes in conflict with the very Truth that the Master lived and died for. As Paul continues his words in our selection we should try to see that he IS speaking to men who have at least somewhat realized that they ARE “led by the Spirit of God” which the Master shows us IS the reward of the man who will keep His words. There IS NO difference here between having “the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you” and the Master’s words in the third part of our trifecta where the Lord, in any Aspect, DOES “dwell in you“, in the man who “will keep my words“; it IS this man that Jesus speaks of saying “my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him“. Can we see here how that the apostle’s words ARE clarifying and amplifying the words of Jesus as he tells us that we must “mortify the deeds of the body” which IS the effective cause and result of keeping His words. Paul goes on to tells us about the “spirit of bondage” and we should note that he uses the idea of again; in his saying that “ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear” we should see that his point IS NOT that those who ARE “led by the Spirit of God” should fall again into bondage but rather that they should gain the “Spirit of adoption” which IS an ever increasing Union with the Lord where the adopted son of God becomes, in a peculiar and intimate sense, one with the heavenly Father. It IS this Union of the Spirit and the Soul of a man with his Life in form that IS the pinnacle of Life in this world. In this Union the Soul informs the personality so that the consciousness of the man becomes expressive of the Truth and the Love that ARE the Soul. Heretofore the consciousness was expressive of the carnal mind and emotions that were nurtured and indoctrinated into the ways of the world. There IS much complexity in this change that the Master shows us in terms of Repentance and Paul shows us in terms of the Transformation that IS the natural result of one’s change of focus, one’s True Repentance.
We should try to see how that Paul’s Epistle to the Romans IS a series of ideas offered “To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints” (Romans 1:7). We should try to understand that this calling IS a self motivated idea, that a man IS self motivated to Repentance as he heeds the call of his own Soul which IS ever prompting everyman to the Good, the Beautiful and the True, to the things of God. In this we can then perhaps see how that the apostle’s words ARE directed to such a man who seeks the Truth and understands that the goal IS ever to overcome the “the spirit of bondage” which IS the reality of those that “live after the flesh“, which IS to live according to “the rudiments of the world” (Colossians 2:20). This IS most ALL men in and out of the churches with their doctrinal approach to God; it IS most ALL men that ARE “a friend of the world” and therefore “the enemy of God“. We should understand this idea of enemy as it IS presented and not in the common understanding of the idea; other translations show this idea as that a man “maketh himself an enemy of God” (James 4:4) and here we should see that this IS by his own comportment. There IS an adversarial relationship between the world and God or, better, the ways of men in the world and the Ways of God. We should remember here the Master’s words as He explains the Parable of the Sower, as He defines the plight of the seed that “are sown among thorns“; for such persons “the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful” (Mark 4:18, 19). This IS the comportment of the man whose focus IS on the self and the world and it IS this man that the Master compares to the seed sown “on the good ground“; it IS this man that “in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it“. For the man that IS “among thorns” there IS “the spirit of bondage” while for the man that IS the “good ground” there IS “received the Spirit of adoption“. We should note here that the report of Jesus words IS varied among the gospel writers. Matthew reports the idea of man that IS “among thorns” as that “he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful” and the “good ground” as that he “heareth the word, and understandeth it; which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty” (Matthew 13:22, 23). Mark shows us similar ideas for the man “among thorns” adding the idea of “the lusts of other things entering in” as he shows us the “good ground” as the man that will “hear the word, and receive it, and bring forth fruit, some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some an hundred” (Mark 4:20). Luke shows us the Master’s words for the man “among thorns” as that he will “have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection” while showing us the “good ground” as that this man will “having heard the word, keep it” (Luke 8:14, 15). On the side of the man that IS “among thorns” the common idea of all IS that this man IS encumbered by “the care of this world” and the reality of “the deceitfulness of riches” and both of these ideas ARE rather ignored by the doctrinal thinkers who DO NOT see their opposition to God. Luke expands this latter idea into “pleasures of this life” which we should understand come in many ways, mental, emotional and physical, as DO the “the lusts of other things entering in” which Mark and Luke show us as an equal encumbrances. It IS these encumbrances that equate to Paul’s idea of “the spirit of bondage again to fear“; such encumbrances ARE the bondage of men to this world which Paul goes on to explain for us as the vanity into which ALL men ARE born.
On the other side IS the “good ground” which IS also reported to us in various ways. Mark tells us that this man will receive the word and “and bring forth fruit“; Matthew tells us that this man will “heareth the word, and understandeth it; which also beareth fruit” while Luke tells us that this man will “having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience“. We should try to see here that the Mater ONLY had one thought in this saying and that ALL of these ideas, the receiving, the understanding and the keeping DO, from that perspective, mean the same thing. How DO we KNOW which of the apostle’s ideas here ARE to be followed and which IS the True nature of the “good ground“? Simply by looking further into Jesus’ words and here again we can rely upon our trifecta which shows us that it IS keeping His words that brings to us the Truth, His Presence and His Kingdom. If keeping His words brings these True spiritual gifts, these graces, then the ideas of understanding and receiving must perforce have some synonymous effect upon the lives of men who Truly seek the Lord. While Vincent tells us that: The three evangelists give three characteristics of the good hearer. Matthew, he understandeth the word; Mark, he receiveth it; Luke, he keepeth it 4, he fails to show us the idea that these three ‘characteristics‘ ARE and likely must be synonymous. Again, the three writers ARE writing about the very same thing albeit each from their own perspective. We should look here at the ideas presented by these three words; in Matthew’s use of the Greek word syniēmi which IS rendered as “understandeth it“, we should try to see that this understanding IS rooted in KNOWING some measure of the Truth and, in the times of the disciples in their relationship with Jesus there IS but One Truth and NOT the multifaceted ideas of Truth that we have today. From Jesus words in our trifecta we KNOW that Jesus tells us that this KNOWING IS based in one’s ability to “continue in my word“. Can we see the point here? In saying that today’s Truth IS multifaceted we ARE NOT affirming that any doctrinal approach IS more of less related to the One Truth but rather we ARE showing how that the One Truth has been divided into many doctrinal facets, most of which have naught to DO with the singular Truth which the man that IS the “good ground” will understand. It IS this man who IS among His “disciples indeed“; it IS this man who can open up the mysteries….”Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints” (Colossians 1:26). In receiving we should ever see the idea of acceptance and understand this as an acceptance of the Truth that one can come to KNOW through keeping His words. We should try to see that there IS NO mystery here in the way that the “good ground” IS presented by the gospel writers and that ALL these terms ARE synonymous. In keeping His words we gain the Truth and, as a Transforming man in this world we gain the understanding that IS necessary to “bring forth fruit“. And, in keeping His words we also find the wherewithal to receive the Truth that they embody, a Truth that is alien to the carnal man and to his doctrines which have chosen the seemingly easier path to ‘salvation‘; doctrines that have ignored such ideas which would place most everyman, in and out of the church, “among thorns“; doctrines that prevent the understanding and the acceptance that their preference and their focus places them in that place where the Truths “are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life“.
We will continue with our thoughts in the next post.
- 4 Word Studies in the New Testament; Marvin R Vincent D.D. 2nd edition
- 9 Thayer’s Greek Lexicon on blueletterbible.org
- 9a The New Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible on blueletterbible.org
- * Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- ** A Treatise on Cosmic Fire by Alice A Bailey © 1951 by Lucis Trust
- 12 Expositions of Holy Scripture–Project Gutenberg’s and Baker Book House’ Expositions of Holy Scripture, by Alexander Maclaren–(1826-1910)
Those who walk on the well-trodden path always throw stones at those who are showing a new road.
Voltaire, Writer and Philosopher