On Michael And The Gospels: Coincidence?

580775_539146396116757_1826863888_nThis past week, an unlikely coincidence occurred with my teaching. A coincidence that left me wondering…is there really any such thing as true coincidence? It just so happened that on the same two days that I was preparing  my English 102 classes for my usual presentation on symbolism in the Black or White video, I was also covering The New Testament and the gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke in World Lit. I certainly had not put any forethought into this when I planned my respective syllabi for those two courses! Yet here I was, realizing that at the same time I was prepping to teach two sections of 102 that would center around Michael Jackson and his message to the world on racial harmony (or the lack thereof, more aptly) I was also preparing another class to talk about Jesus. Yet somehow, going from Michael Jackson at 9:00am on a Wednesday morning, to Jesus at 10am, did not seem that jarring of a shift. Understand, mind you, I am not saying they are one and the same. Nor am I one of those zealous fans who is always trying to put Michael on the same pedestal as Jesus-or God, for that matter.

But as many have aptly pointed out, the parallels in their lives are certainly striking! The more cyncial can say what they want. But what can’t be denied is that both came from humble beginnings, rose to become too powerful and too feared, and were persecuted for daring to speak truths that the masses were not yet ready to hear. Perhaps one could even argue that they were both, in a sense, crucified.

Although I Realize Farrakhan Has Been A Controversial Figure Among Fans, The Subject Of His 2009 Sermon Seemed Apt
Although I Realize Farakhan Has Been A Controversial Figure Among Fans, The Subject Of His 2009 Sermon Seemed Apt

I wanted to share with you some things that especially stood out to me as I was reviewing those excerpts from The Gospels that are included in our class text. I think you will agree with me why it might have given me more than a few goosebumps to go from “Don’t tell me you agree with me/when I saw you kicking dirt in my eye” to The Sermon on the Mount, all within a matter of minutes. “The Beatitudes” in particular-that section of The Sermon in which Jesus reminded his followers who would be the blessed ones, and why, seem to have especial relevance when we compare them to everything we know about Michael’s life and how it was lived.

From Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 5-7:

Blessed are the pure in heart, because they shall see God.

Blessed are the peacemakers, because they shall be called the sons of God.

Blessed are they who are persecuted for their righteousness, because theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.

Blessed are you when they shall revile you and persecute you and and speak every evil thing of you, lying, because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because your reward in heaven is great; for thus did they persecute the prophets before you.

AME church photo
Rare Photo of Michael Attending AME Church With Tom Mesereau. They Prayed For God To Watch Over and Protect Him During The Trial

From The Tenets of Discipleship:

Do not judge, so you may not be judged. You shall be judged by that judgement for which you judge, and your measure will be made by that measure for which you measure. Why do you look at the straw which is in the eye of your brother, and not see the log which is in your eye? Or how will you say to your brother: Let me take the straw out of your eye, and behold, the log is in your eye. You hypocrite, first take the log out of your eye, and then you will see to take the straw out of the eye of your brother. Do not give what is sacred to the dogs, and do not cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet and turn and rend you. (This last reminds me of the public scorn and mockery that followed so many of Michael’s most sincere and heartfelt public statements regarding children and the state of our planet, or how many of his more politically important and profound songs were scorned by critics who only wanted him to remain a happy song-and-dance man for us!).

Jesus made a conscious choice to teach in parables, just as Michael used the medium of music to get his messages across. When Jesus was asked by his disciples why he taught in parables, this was his response:

Jesus_the_Teacher003“…I talk to them in parables because they have sight but do not see, and hearing but do not hear or understand…” (From Matthew 13).

Lastly, consider this account from Matthew 27-28 of how the high priests conspired to cover the truth of the Resurrection, and to convince the masses that Jesus’s body had disappeared as a result of simple thievery, rather than  the fulfillment of divine prophecy. This excerpt picks up with the disciples having been instructed to go forth and spread the news in the city:

“And as they went on their way, behold, some of the guards went into the city and reported to the high priests all that had happened. And they met with the elders, and took counsel together, and gave the soldiers a quantity of money, saying: Say that the disciples came in the night and stole him away while we were sleeping. And if this is heard in the house of the governor, we shall reason with him, and make it so that you have nothing to fear. And they took the money and did as they were instructed. And this is the story that has been spread out among the Jews, to this day.”

Does this not sound eerily like the same way the mass media operates today? Does this not bear at least some resemblance to exactly what Michael was telling us, over and over, in songs like Money and Tabloid Junkie? A truth must, by all means, be suppressed, out of fear. In its place a lie is given, to keep the truth suppressed. Money exchanges hands, all for the purpose of perpetuating the lie. Money continues to exchange hands. The lie is picked up, passed on-and believed.

One might ask: What was it that the high priests feared? It is a simple answer. They feared that if the truth of the Resurrection was known, they would have to admit they were wrong. And in admitting they were wrong, they would lose control and power. There would be no stopping The Believers-and no stopping of Jesus’s influence.

I can’t help that this reminds me more than a bit of all the recent controversy over the Sullivan book, and how the media has rushed to embrace its perpetuation of the MJ caricature. In fact, it reminds me far too much of how the media has handled most everything when it comes to Michael.

This Controversial Portrait Began Circulating On Many Fansites In 2009. I Personally Love It And Think It Is Quite Beautiful.
This Controversial Portrait Began Circulating On many Fansites In 2009. I Personally Love It And Think It Is Quite Beautiful.

Several weeks ago, I had a strange dream. I dreamed that I heard on the news that Michael had died. I remembered thinking, in my dream, how hard it was going to be to have to log into Allforloveblog and write a post on the death of Michael Jackson. It would be the hardest post I would ever have to write! I even recalled seeing the date on the calendar, plain as day: February 13th (oddly enough, Prince’s birthday, though I did not make that connection in my dream). I remembered how I marked that date in my dream, as the day Michael Jackson died.

When I awoke, I continued pondering about the strange dream. The irony is that Michael has been “dead” ever since I’ve been writing this blog! Perhaps in my subconscious, this stemmed from the fact that writing about him on this blog keeps him very much alive for me. But in the world of my dream, it was as if I had always been writing about him as a living figure-as if June 25th, 2009 had never occurred.

So what did my dream mean by his “death” occurring on February 13th, 2013?

Again, I had cold chills as I realized this was the first date for which I was scheduled to teach the Black or White video to my class! What could it mean?

I continued to wonder. But as February 13th came and went without incident-and as I found myself teaching a class of very eager and engaged students (attendance was overflowing that day!)- I realized that dreams sometimes mean the mirror opposite of what we think they mean. For example, a dream of going to a wedding may mean you will end up attending a funeral, or vice versa. A dream about death can often signify a dream about birth-if you believe in that sort of thing, of course.

michael-jackson-arms-out-the-end13

Michael Jackson certainly didn’t “die” again on February 13th. At least not in body. But maybe, in some way I have yet to comprehend, he may have risen again.

I like to think so, anyway.

For sure, to bring this full circle, it certainly did not feel odd that day to shift gears from MJ to JC. In fact, it did not feel like any gears shifted at all, but more like coasting in “drive.”

I am coming to believe, more strongly than ever, that nothing happens by coincidence.

In fact, I have begun to question if “coincidence” is a concept that exists at all.

 

80 thoughts on “On Michael And The Gospels: Coincidence?”

  1. BEAUTIFUL!!!! I LOVE LOVE LOVE this post, Raven. Thanks so much–and I am happy to hear that your Blkack or White class was overflowing. It’s good to know young people are learning about MJ’s great work from someone who really understands it. Btw, do you teach some of the interpretations made by the MJ Academia Project? The videos they made? I was looking at BOW recently and I looked carefully at the statue that the jaguar walks by (I think the name jaguar for that animal is more accurate than black panther) and I am sure it is not George Washington as MJAP said. If you look closely, you will see what I mean. Btw, was the jaguar one of MJ’s animals? I seem to remember an earlier photo with him with the black jaguar as a cub?

    About MJ’s Biblical resonances in his messages and life–yes, it is very strongly there. He was such a devout person and was steeped in the Bible. I think he studied the Bible a lot, along with other religious texts, but esp. the Bible. That portrait is amazing (like the Pieta); I had never seen it before.

    About your dream, it’s very interesting. How did you feel when you heard he had died? The date 2/13/2013 is interesting when you think about the repetitions of the numbers. I had a fairly recent dream too. In my dream MJ was a child and he was with someone who was introducing him (a man). Anyway, MJ the child came over to me (I was sitting down) and he came close and kissed me on the cheek. It was so wonderful and I had such a feeling of his lovingness, sweetness, and goodness.

    1. Yes, I use a lot of the material from the Academia Project. I will have to take another look at that particular scene.

      I am not exactly sure why the portrait of Jesus holding Michael’s body caused so much flack. It seemed to upset a lot of people. I remember that someone posted it on MJFC, and one poster responded, “Please remove it. NOW!”

      I think some did not like the way Jesus is portrayed in the painting. Others were probably upset over its depiction of Michael’s dead body (this was summer of 2009, and emotions were still raw). Then, of course, as always on any public forum, you have people from many different religious backgrounds and even atheists, who will take offense to anything that seems to be purporting one religion over another. But there was never any doubt that Michael’s own religious background was Christian, so for me, it seems perfectly fitting.

      1. Hi, Raven, about the MJAP designation of that statue as George Washington–that statue to me looks like a Roman centurion or something similar but not George Washington–for one thing, the figure is a bare-headed man–if Washington did not have his military hat on, he had his page-boy style wig on–never bare-headed with a just a short haircut. Also the costume is not the costume of George Washington. I will be interested if you look closely at the statue and see what I mean. (I googled statues of George Washington for a comparison.)

        1. I went back and watched the vid, paying close attention to the statue. To be honest, I replayed that part of the clip several times, but it is really hard to tell definitively. One thing I do agree is that the costume does not look right. The head/profile does look similar to Washington, but I am just not 100% sure either way. Having a George Washington statue in the scene would certainly be more in keeping with the video’s theme (and considering that we just saw Michael atop the Statue of Liberty) but, then again, it’s also possible to try to read too much into anything. The statue could have simply been a prop that accidentally made it into the shot. I hadn’t really thought much about it before. But it would be interesting to know for sure.

  2. Raven, what beautiful words, which suffered post yet so sensitive.

    You know, I wanted to say to you … but then I was afraid of being petulant.
    You know, I on February 13v I heard live, waking something very powerful, very strange in my heart, now I want to say to you.

    I was driving my car, I was coming home from school of my children, well I suddenly I felt a pain, intense and an unexpected pain in the chest, pain that was a tear, an irreparable damage: at first I did not understand, but then slowly I understood the origin of the pain I focused suddenly that despite all my thoughts and all that surrounds me Michael died and I realized that that person is no longer the all the senses.

    This awareness has been so painful to have to stop the car.
    Yet I know from a long time that Michael died. Because these feelings, because so powerful, because this pain, as if it were a relative of mine? and because just in that day?

    1. Thanks for sharing. February 13th felt like a very strange day to me, all day long. Perhaps it was simply that having the dream had given me a sense of foreboding about it, which I then projected onto everything, but it was a very strange vibe all day long. It would be interesting to know how Prince was feeling on that day, his 16th birthday (and btw I have not forgotten to note his birthday; I will be doing a little something for both boys combined near the end of this week).

      For some reason, I have been feeling Michael’s presence very strongly this week. I’ve had more dreams about him in the last few nights than in the last six months combined. Or to give another example: Yesterday after I had finished this post, I went for a walk. I was thinking ahead to my presentation I will be doing on March 26th for Dancing The Dream; trying to generate ideas for how I will put that presentation together. I was listening to the Brunei version of Earth Song (because I plan to incorporate Earth Song into the presentation) and hoping for some inspiration. Although I know I want to use Earth Song, I am still not sure how to work it in, or which version/performance should be used. As I was thinking all of this through, the song reached the impromptu part where Michael begins to sing, “Tell me all about it.” At that moment, I looked up and saw two buzzards gliding in air, very close together; in fact, they were flying so close together that their wings clipped each other (I love buzzards; they are both so majestic and so clumsy, all at the same time) and I recalled Michael’s poem “Two Birds” from Dancing The Dream. Words can’t describe how I felt in that moment. Some experiences are simply too mystical for words. But then that section of the song goes on, from “Tell me all about it to “Doggone” which is repeated many times. Yes, Michael was spontaneously ad libbing those lines (I am sure to fill up that awkward gap where ordinarily he would have had the tank rolling onstage, and all of the “villagers” and the soldier onstage) but that is partly why the Brunei performance is so powerful. It is just Michael, in the moment; pure, live, and raw.

      But as I listened, I realized something else. “Doggone” is just a euphemism for “God damn.” The etymology for “doggone” and “doggone it” is quite interesting, in fact:

      http://english.stackexchange.com/questions/23445/where-did-the-term-doggone-it-come-from

      That Michael uses it so liberally and passionately during his Earth Song ad lib says a lot. Perhaps it could be interpreted as “Listen to what I have to say, G-dammit.” Or “God damn the mess we have made of the earth.” Or “God will damn us for what we have done.” In either case, it is, no doubt, an impassioned plea of anger.

      And-I kid you not!-as I was listening to that segment, the sky clouded over. Now, yes, it had been one of those days, where the sun had skitted in and out amongst clouds all day long. But this was different. The wind grew suddenly colder; sharper. A sudden burst of snowflakes came blowing in from the west; where just a few moments before, all had been calm.

      I know it was the combination of listening to that track and my current mood that made me so unusually perceptive of these events. I had just finished this post, so mentally I was already attuned. But I did take it as a sign of sorts. I do think that Michael manages to speak to us, in his own way. All I can say is that I did feel very empowered after that, and with a much firmer resolve for what has to be done-and the message that has to be gotten across when I do my presentation.

      1. Raven, thank you, you’ve painted a scene very special, very intimate yet dazzling.

        You know, you can not believe but it’s true, in the valley in front of my house, often fly pairs of buzzards hovering in the sky and they are carried away by air currents: believe me, I’ve always thought that they were a sort of embodiment of the spirit of Michael: every time I said to myself, “Here, he is now free, he is flying quiet and finally he can be himself, free and yet in tune with a partner and with the world, with his beloved land”.

        Raven, in that thought I almost always found some consolation and closeness and often I scan the sky waiting to see my beloved buzzards.

  3. There is more. Jesus behaviour when facing his trial and the cross, he did not open his mouth, he did not defend himself. That reminds me very much of the way Michael faced all his enemies,all the horrible lies day after day, and he did not open his mouth. This was intriguing. Also the fact that he never accused anybody of anything he did not retaliate and did not ask for vindication or vengeance. This says a lot. They way he took it is so touching, so humble, so quiet. I am amazed at that. How could he not loose his patience. The Bible says that a man can control himself the way he did only by the power of the Holy Ghost.
    I think the more I get to know Michael, the more I ask myself who really this man was?

    1. Michael seemed to live his life by the example of “turn the other cheek” though he did get angry-and often. Jesus preached that to enter the Kingdom of Heaven, one must love one’s enemies, and must endure the enmity of others with dignity and fortitude, rather than with vengeance and retaliation. Michael said in one of his works from Dancing The Dream that vengeance is a concept he does not understand (of course, he also wrote this before ’93; at which point I believe he did learn what it meant to be angry enough to understand what vengeance means).

      We see that he endured every day of that trial with an almost Zen-like attitude. This left a lasting impression on many, including Aphrodite Jones. But yet I don’t know what some jounalists were expecting. Did they want him to be angry, throw a fit, curse and scream? (I’m sure if he had, the media would have had a field day with that as well!). In the end, I guess he handled things the only way they possibly could be handled, given the circumstances. Once you are on trial, you are really at the mercy of the judge and those jurors-and whatever they decide. Your fate is in their hands. If you know you are innocent, you can only pray for God’s protection and that these people will be able to see and believe in your innocence, as well. But there is never any guarantee of how a jury will decide, even if it seems that everything is in your favor. I know from everything I have read that Michael was already preparing for the worst possible case scenario, because he knew it could just as easily go that way.

      It is possible that during the trial, he was somewhat disconnecting, which is a common defense mechanism for victims. Some days he did not seem all “there” to me, but as if he was mentally projecting himself someplace else. I think this was how he probably got through most days of those four months.

      Michael didn’t speak out for himself often (in fact, I wish he had spoken out a lot more) but there is no denying that when he made those public appeals, both in 1993 and 2004, that he was very angry. It was the anger that persuaded many of his innocence (the wisdom being that a guilty man seeks to run and hide, rather than confront). In Lisa Campbell’s book, she states that Michael’s approval rating definitely skyrocketed after that first public appeal, with many polls reflecting that most people felt he was innocent. My younger sister said her initial reaction to that speech was, “That took balls for him to go on TV and say that.”

      Perhaps this was part of the “method to the madness,” as the old saying goes. Michael did not speak out often. Some say he did not speak out nearly enough. But there can be no denying that when he did, people listened. Perhaps because Michael lashed out so rarely, we knew that when he did, he meant business.

      1. I read the free samples for Sullivan’s book and he quotes someone who was there in LV when MJ found out about the raid on NL (while filming One More Chance). The source–forget who at the moment–said that MJ erupted in rage and frustration and literally smashed the hotel room up big time. That’s how mad he was and outraged. Of course, we don’t know if it’s true 100% but it is very interesting and I for one do not blame him one bit. To have found out that 70 sheriffs did that with no warning and to envision the whole nightmare descending on him once more–wow-just pure anger could be the reaction.

        1. I think that story is probably true. Paris was quoted as saying, “Daddy broke a lamp” when he heard about it. Children usually don’t lie about such things.

          1. Raven , if you read Jermaine’s book and LaToya’s book… they described that moment, as Michael going through a very explicit anger’s crisis ! One thing that impressed me was they saying Michael threw the meal off the table ( this impressed me so much because I imagined the mess)… and LaToya says that , when she and Katherine arrived there , Grace had taken the kids from the room where he was , but Paris ( always Paris ! She’s so special !) ran to Kate , telling her grandma how much daddy was mad! So, you see it was something so spontaneous that he not even thought about the kids being present! When Jemaine arrived , he
            had already succumbed to reality and was crying . Every time I read this episode of his life , I feel angry with the happenings and wish I could have him on my lap , like a child to console him ( I guess every one of us feels this way…)!

          2. That may have been where the quote about the broken lamp came from. I have read LaToya’s book; still working through Jermaine’s.

          1. Thanks for that link, Gloved 1. Interesting that Katherine cleaned up the mess so that the hotel maids wouldn’t find out (cause she knew about MAIDS at NL–Blanca Francia and so on), but after she does that, Marc Schaeffel tells the story to Sullivan (with NO mention of Katherine cleaning up) and Dieter ta;ls to ET back in 09. SCUM!

      2. Michael was definetely in the air this week.
        In a talkshow item on tv where people talk about their favourite music one of the choices was Michael singing human nature in the TII documentary. I get goosebumps everytime I see how amazing he was, but so frail ……..
        Also this week I saw a film called Jagten. If you have a chance to see it you should. Its a very heartwrenching story about a man who is falsely accused of molesting a little girl – and many more ‘victims’ who emerge, and the toll it takes on him . His life is completely turned upside down .He is fighting for the custody of his son and against the injustice that is done to him, meanwhile trying to keep his dignity and pride. The film gets under your skin and is an eyeopener to what it does to the psyche of someone who is falsely accused of such a terrible crime. I could only think of Michael and that he must have gone through the same emotions as this man, from disbelief to denial to destructive all consuming rage.
        Exactly the kind of rage Michael had when it happened to him, And I completely understand.

        1. This sounds like an important film that every MJ fan should see, if for nothing else, to better understand the psyche of a falsely accused individual.

          1. I found this quote from the review interesting:

            The film is perhaps open to some plausibility niggles: would not Lucas have engaged a lawyer, or been advised to do so, at some stage? Well perhaps not. Someone in his situation might simply be too stunned to defend his interests, or he could suspect that any such action would be an admission of guilt.

            The last two are certainly things to keep in mind when people question why didn’t Michael do this, or why didn’t he do that? One has to put themselves in those shoes for a moment. It is very possible that one simply doesn’t know what they would or wouldn’t do-until they are in that position. No doubt, there must have been times when Michael felt stunned and confused. He had attorneys, but I can only imagine how much conflicting advice he was getting, from all sides.

          2. @iutd ,thank you for the link. The review describes exactly what the film is all about and how I felt watching it.

  4. Oh yes, I also love this post very much. You express a lot of things I’ve felt since 2009. Too many coincidences in this case give me the feeling that Michael’s life and death must have a meaning for us. And we can feel very privileged to see this in contrary to those who are still blind and don’t want to accept this wake-up call.

    1. I think so. I often go back to the state of mind I felt before Michael died. I was not a fan; maybe a casual fan at best. Someone who liked some of his music, but didn’t give much thought to the man behind it. I had grown up with Michael and he was always just kind of “there”, as iutd put it, a part of our culture, but not someone I followed closely. I can’t analyze exactly why his death struck me so hard; it was like a jolt, a tremendous wake-up call. I have, of course, already written on that topic many times, and so I won’t repeat myself here. But what is amazing is the sheer number of people who all felt the same way. What seemed unprecedented about Michael’s death, as opposed to any other celebrity, is the staggering number of people who felt compelled to reach out and get to know him. One has to ask: Why was that? And why did it occur on such a mass scale? I still do not have the easy answers for that.

      For myself, I couldn’t shake off the persistent sadness that a grave injustice had been done; that this man had died with his name never having been fully cleared. That he died still being so misunderstood. I could not shake it off then. Nearly four years later, I still have not shaken it off.

      1. Yes, and why one person and not another; folks who lived through his time just like someone else did. Was it the individual person…and what about that person triggered the desire to KNOW…was it Michael somehow reaching ‘souls in a similar vibration’ and open to question…was it a spiritual awakening of sorts…or simply a cross global cultural phenomenon? Those who KNEW already were joined by many more after his transition…stories the same…experiences described by people in Europe and Asia and So and No America, in Africa…facinating and maybe unanswerable questions.

        1. Hi Raven and Lauren. Add me to the list of those who were suddenly awakened to the miracle of Michael Jackson — by his death. An epiphany. Is there a compilation of names of people similarly affected. It is no accident. Something really significant was/is happening. What does it mean? I think a very honest account of each person’s personal emotional experience would be very revealing. I would love to see a book or a blog devoted to accounts of those experiences.

          1. Eleanor.. I too was one of those who suddenly wanted to get to know Michael after he died, and didn’t know why at first. I couldn’t get him out of my mind ( sometimes I thought I was having a bit of a “schoolgirl crush” .. which was rather odd.. because I was born 10 years before Michael ..lol.!!! and also slightly disturbing .. because he was no longer alive)

            Before that he was “just there” as Raven said, (and how could you not like him!!), and although I was aware of all the nonsense that surrounded him , I didn’t know much about it , having given up on newpapers and magazines many years previously. I did watch the Bashir documentary and can remember the following morning talking to a friend at work about it, and we couldn’t understand why Michael had let “that pratt Bashir” do it.. we thought he made Michael look foolish. (Perhaps Michael was influenced by the Princess Di interview… which a lot of people in the UK also cringed at.)

            Nevertheless when I really examined my feelings which ultimateley led to my journey with Michael, I felt that a terrible injustice had been allowed to happen, and somehow it just had to be put right.That feeling overwhelmed me.

            Now , nearly 4 years on, having “got to know” Michael fairly well, and still just as enthusiastic,if not more so, I view his life as a sort of example for the rest of us. He experienced pretty much every possible thing that could happen to one human being, almost as if he knew that if he really wanted to get his message across , he would have to pay a high price to do it and have lots of extreme life experiences.I think his mission (and god-given role) in life was to “help” others in the broadest possible sense.

            I look at how he handled problems, and everything else, in his life , whether he got things right or wrong , and I find I am able to deal with challenges in my own much more easily. I hope this doesn’t sound too “sycophantic” and it’s perhaps an oversimplification, but I hope you get the gist of it.

            Now this is totally off topic.. but I now have a little closer connection with Michael. About 15 miles down the road from where I live, there is a small village called Kington St Michael!!. In a couple of months time Michael will have an acre of woodland deicated to him for all time ,and a commemmorative wooden bench in the woods situated just at the edge of the village.The woodland is open for anyone to visit and this has all been paid for by the charity MJL (www.michaejacksonslegacy.org).. How cool is that?

          2. Eleanor, have you heard of this documentary? It’s not exactly the same thing (people who were impacted exclusively by his death) but it is an attempt to examine/analyze the impact he had on his fans.

          3. MagUK –very cool, indeed. And thanks for sharing your story. My life was completely changed by his death and his life which I have been learning about ever sense. I have almost felt like I was possessed. I’ve never experienced anything like it.

            Raven — I had not heard of the documentary. Looks interesting. Thanks.

  5. I am using Google Translate. I hope everyone can understand what I am saying.
    I’m not one of those who believes that Michael is the new Jesus, but I recently stumbled on the Wikipedia article about archangel Michael. The coincidence struck me. Especially

    ” Daniel is informed about the role of Michael during the “time of the End” when there will be “distress such as has not happened from the beginning of nations” and that: “At that time Michael, the great prince who protects your people, will arise.””

    “”the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God”.This archangel who heralds the second coming of Christ is not named, but is probably Michael.”

    “It is said that Michael prevented Isaac from being sacrificed by his father by substituting a ram in his place, and saved Jacob, while yet in his mother’s womb, from being killed by Samael. Later Michael prevented Laban from harming Jacob.”

    “His first role is the leader of the Army of God and the leader of heaven’s forces in their triumph over the powers of hell. He is viewed as the angelic model for the virtues of the spiritual warrior, with the conflict against evil at times viewed as the battle within.”

    “In his second role, Michael is the angel of death, carrying the souls of all the deceased to heaven. In this role, at the hour of death, Michael descends and gives each soul the chance to redeem itself before passing, thus consternating the devil and his minions. Catholic prayers often refer to this role of Michael. In his third role, he weighs souls in his perfectly balanced scales (hence Michael is often depicted holding scales).”

    “Some early Protestant scholars identified Michael with the pre-incarnate Christ, basing their view, partly on the juxtaposition of the “child” and the archangel in Revelation 12, and partly on the attributes ascribed to him in Daniel.”

    “Jehovah’s Witnesses believe Michael to be another name for Jesus Christ in heaven, in his pre-human and post-resurrection existence.”

    “Seventh-day Adventists believe that Michael is another name for the Heavenly Christ, and another name for the Word-of-God (as in John 1) before he became incarnate as Jesus.”

    “In the Seventh-day Adventist view, the statement in 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18: “For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven, with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God” identifies Jesus as Archangel, which is Michael”

    “Latter-day Saints (also known informally as Mormons) believe that Michael is Adam, the Ancient of Days (Dan. 7), a prince, and the patriarch of the human family and that Michael assisted Jehovah (the heavenly form of Jesus Christ) in the creation of the world under the direction of God the Father and cast Satan out of heaven.”
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_%28archangel%29

    1. Secondly, I have thought, that with the powers that Jesus had, He could easily become a world ruler. Instead, he let himself to be crucified. What was one of the factors why Christianity spread throughout the world, and why His teachings are known to this day. And when I hear people say, why Michael didn’t defended himself more actively , it seems to me that he thought on a much larger time scale. He let voluntarily the world to crucify him. I know several people who have found Michael’s precisely because of an injustice, how the world treated Michael.

      1. Thanks for this info, El. In thinking about Michael the Archangel as the leader or commander of God’s army, I wonder if this was partly why Michael often wore those military outfits??? And he looked so great in them. For instance, in the HIStory teaser where he really has an army with him. And he spoke of his fans as his “army of love.” Such an amazing man! There are many dimensions and deep, deep depths here.

    2. Thanks for this information, el. I am especially interested in how the JW view Jesus Christ. I am very interested in learning as much as I can about JW beliefs, as I know this shaped much of Michael’s belief system and idealogy. I remember that I used to always invite the JW in when they would come to call, because even though I had no interest in converting, I have always been very interested in the beliefs of other religions and denominations. I remember asking how the JW feel about Jesus. One of them said that they believe Jesus is a holy man, but was just one of many teachers of Jehovah’s word. They do not believe he is the Son of God, and do not believe that one can enter Heaven through belief in Jesus alone.

      Yet Michael often spoke of Jesus, and in his own views, seemed to have much more kinship with Christian doctrine than that of the JW.

      All of this is very interesting. From the story I have heard, there was no deep meaning behind Katherine’s decision to give Michael his name. They had simply run out of names, and Katherine’s mother suggested Michael off the cuff. But perhaps there is something to be said for the fact that giving a name can invoke many qualities that are associated with it.

    3. Okay…so tell me why I was reading that verse in the 10th chapter of Daniel this weekend…wow, what is this, lol? I have always wanted to learn more about archangel Michael, that’s why I went looking for that verse. OMG, talk about coincidences!

  6. This is an interesting angle of discussion.
    I dont have much kowledge of the bible and I also dont see Michael as a deity but as human and a sinner like myself. But I do see paralels in his life and the life of Jesus of Nazareth.

    The most striking is that both of them were first hailed and praised even worshipped and when the tide turned were mocked and ridiculed. Jesus was worn a crown of thorns , Michael called ‘the pale king’ (by Bill Wyman, who like Sullivans ‘research’ copied the ‘title’ from DF Wallace s book)
    Their charisma attracted masses of followers, but the same masses were manipulated into an angry mob against them.
    The level of betrayal is similar.
    They had the same meekness and love for children, both their messages were about love and peace. But they were also warriors when it came to defending what they believe in. Jesus with the violent cleansing of the temple against the money changers, Michael attacking Sony/ Mottola for sabotaging his art and music .
    The meaning of Michaels name : the one who is like G-d .
    As for the coincidences in Michaels life , even the biggest sceptic must admit that many things that happened to one person are statistically impossible. Are they really coincidences, are they staged or are they driven by higher forces. Then the coincidences concerning Michael that happen in our own lives,like Ravens experience.
    But also many questions that to me are a part of the Michael mystery.
    Why after everything was taken from him and he was driven away from his home and land was there no happy ending for Michael.
    Was it karma as 2 people in his life had publically called upon him ? Was it a selffulfilling prophecy?
    Was Michaels life meant to be an allegory to humanity?
    What if anything have we learned from it. And if not, was it all in vain?

    1. You raise some very intriguing questions. I do believe there is a very allegory-like quality to Michael’s life. I certainly don’t think his life or death will be in vain. There is too much for us to learn from it. The fact that so many have joined in this cause for his vindication speaks for itself.

      That article from Bill Wyman is certainly one of the most biased and revolting pieces of trash I have ever read, and I have seen a LOT when it comes to Michael. But there are always some articles in particular that-just by the very nature of their especial bile and vituperativeness-stand out. That one is certainly in the Top 5 of the most scathing, mocking and hateful pieces about Michael ever written. I think what makes it especially appalling is that it was written in direct response to Michael’s Oxford Union speech, which is probably by far one of the most moving speeches he ever gave. How Wyman then manages to twist and make a mockery of such an eloquent and moving speech is a perfect example of what Jesus meant when he spoke of casting one’s pearls before swine. Unfortunately, as a public figure, there was not much of a way Michael could entirely avoid casting pearls before swine.

      The swine are many; the pearls, unfortunately, few and far between.

  7. This might
    sound crazy,but after Michael’s death I was always waiting to hear that God brought him back!

    I guess wishful thinking!!!

    1. I know. Sometimes it still feels like this has to be the ultimate publicity stunt, right?

      While I know there will be no physical resurrection (Michael was a man, not a god) I do think there was a kind of metaphoric resurrection. Look at how his music and career revived after that! How many new fans came on board! How many started researching his life to learn the truth about him! How his music shot to the top of the charts again! How there was at least some effort on the part of the media-not near enough, but a start-towards reassessing their view of him and his cultural importance.

      I think, in one sense, he did rise again. Just not in a physical sense.

  8. Loved this, Raven!

    Like you, I have serious doubts about coincidences. I believe that things happen for very meaningful and specific reasons. While I believe that Michael had so many wonderful plans for the future (and no doubt we would have been ecstatic at his creations), there is a reason why he left us so suddenly in 2009. Yes, Murray was responsible for his death, but why? We may never know in this life, but perhaps it will all be revealed when we’re together in spirit. What you shared is quite thought-provoking. I don’t deify Michael either, but I feel very strongly that he was imbued with Christ-like qualities, i.e. patience, long-suffering, grace, gentleness, loving-kindness, and great wisdom. To those who saw the pureness of his heart, they were drawn to him like a magnet. To those who were curious doubters, they were still drawn to him–but for the wrong reasons. I can’t think of any modern day human being who evoked so much feeling and interest as Michael Jackson. I doubt, too, that anyone endured more pain–physical, mental and emotional–than Michael Jackson and still he stood strong and never faltered. I was raised in a Christian family and though I have drifted from “organized” religion, I still embrace and practice my Christian teachings. In my mind, God was right beside Michael Jackson, especially during that brutal trial. If Michael were guilty, I believe God would have given him over to his accusers. That, to me, is the clearest example of his innocence. God answered his prayers and those who loved him.

    How wonderful it must feel to teach such eager students about Michael Jackson and his truth. I wish so much I could be a “fly on the wall” in your classroom, to listen and watch. What a great experience for you Raven! Thanks for this. The pictures of Michael are so special and the painting of Christ holding Michael brings tears to my eyes.

    @iutd….although people frequently refer to big black cats as panthers, they are either leopards or jaguars. They are magnificent rare cats.

    1. Yes, being able to teach him in the classroom is such a blessing! It is interesting, too, now that I am doing it at two different colleges, one that is racially mixed, and another that is still predominantly an African-American institution. I know that Michael was all about transcending race, but nevertheless, when you are talking the greatest entertainer of all time who just happened to be BLACK there is no denying that race does come into play and there are differences in how the students react to the classes. I think, for the students at my school that is predominantly an African-American student body, there is a lot more sense that Michael “belonged to us; he was one of us.” They know all the songs; they know the albums. And the only thing I can complain about is that it’s sometimes hard to get them to come to order and listen because you say the name “Michael Jackson” and they immediatly start singing the songs, or saying to some classmate, “What was that song, you know the one where he…?” (followed by some well known, iconic dance move or scene that we all remember). Overall, most of them simply don’t seem to care about his surgeries, or his skin color or any of that crap. It’s not even an issue.

      However, the students at my other school (the one that is more racially diverse) are just as attentive, and just as interested. It’s just that it’s somewhat different. Those students overall tend to be more curious, wanting to know if the things they have read and heard about Michael for most of their lives are true. I find that most students are very curious about Michael, and they will ask a lot of questions. Not surprisingly, few of the questions have much to do with music. They want to know why he turned white? Was his nose really falling off? and etc, etc. But their questions do not come from a place of malice, but rather, genuine curiosity. Sometimes we end up getting way off topic from the video, but that’s okay, too. I want to use that time to clear up any misconceptions about him that I can. Of course they can do their own research beyond the classroom and make up their own minds-if they care to. But I think of it as planting small seeds. If they come away with a different perception of who Michael was than they had going in, I have done my job. After all, they can go on the internet and see/hear all of the negative garbage about Michael 24/7. My goal is to counter all of that with at least an hour of positive truth. It’s not much, but it’s something that I know will change the way they view him forever. I know for sure that when they listen to him deliver that Harlem speech-when they see the quiet, burning determination and anger in his eyes as he proclaims “I’m tired of manipulation” and recounts how the history books have lied-they come away somehow knowing that Michael Jackson was not the same person they thought he was going into this.

      What I am most proud of is that ALL of my students are very bright, and understand the concept of media manipulation. I think we are seeing a generation coming of age who are much more savvy than we were, and less susceptible to the mind games that the media plays. My students are partly why I don’t think-I KNOW-that there is going to be a huge paradigm shift and a revisionist view of Michael coming in the next few generations.

      By the way, I am going to be publishing here the top 5 essays on Black or White from all 5 of my 102 classes, probably sometime around mid-March or whenever I have had time to grade them all, determine the Top 5 from each class, and re-type them. That is going to take some time, but I think it will be worth the effort. I know it is very exciting for them to think that their essays might be published here. I wish I could publish them all, but that is simply not possible, as I have nearly 200 students!

      1. I believe the same, Raven. The young 6 year old in my family seems to be blind to changes in Michael’s appearance and shrugs his shoulders about it.
        The music makes him happy and from that, his simple response is “I love Michael.’ What you are doing in your classroom is vitally important imo.
        The seeds of questioning and ‘ah-ha’ moments that come from hearing the truth can be profound and long lasting. Academia, in total, will be one important way for future generations to think and reason and understand the depth of Michael’s work…and we are just in the very early stages of this change.

        I’m looking forward to reading your students’ essays…be very interesting to see how younger folks view him and his work and how it impacts all of us.

          1. I am very glad that you wrote on this particular topic. The spirituality surrounding Michael is profound and this discussion is really only the tip of the iceberg. I have been thinking about my reaction to his death (which mirrors your own) since June of 2009. I have no real explanation but wouldn’t change it for a minute. It has changed my life.

            Raven..if you need help with the typing, let me know. I can’t wait to read them.
            : – )

          2. I can’t wait to start reading them. I have my first set to do over the weekend. More will come in with the next test that I give my students at the other college where I teach. We just covered Black or White there last night.

            They write the essays in class, so all come in to me handwritten (thus sometimes simply trying to decipher handwriting can be a challenge!).

  9. That painting, from the first time I saw it, has said to me..’Father, look what they have done.’

    I had never heard Minister Farakhan speak until I listened to the speech/sermon you reference above. I found much truth in what he had to say and have realized, if one follows his thought process, that Michael has been ‘crucified’ more than once if one considers the number of times he has been publicly/institutionally violated and condemned.

    Thank you for your post. I’ll add that it has occurred to me that the universal reaction of grief and individual drive to (re)-discover who exactly Michael was after June 25, was a unique phenomenon and unexplainable in its depth and affect on so many people.

  10. MJ was a devout Christian.I remember reading an article written by George Benson a couple of years ago. In this article he stated that both he and MJ trained as Pastors in the JW Church. I also remember reading that MJ used to hear God’s voice. He was quoted as saying that”God told me that Thriller will be greatest selling record of all time”. It is. In those days you had to walk into a store and buy a record. The Internet did not exist and home computers were never heard of. Michael was simply a highly blessed individual desperately seeking after God’s heart. I believe that Michael’s biblical equal is Samson. “This is it” was his” Samson” moment. He had his unique gift, his Delilah and all those who plotted to ruin his name and reputation. MJ was as human as the rest of us . He was God’s worship leader and he knew it. “Speechless” is one of the most beautiful worship songs ever written. It is Michael Jackson’s love song to God.

    1. I believe that Michael was channeling quite a bit. This was the source of his power. You can sense it even in his onstage performances-in fact, that is probably where it comes through the most. I can’t remember who said it, but there was someone near the end of David Gest’s documentary who said something to the effect that “God gave that little man so much talent.” I think it was much more than that. All one has to do is watch a really good performance of Earth Song, or Man In The Mirror. Or the extended, impromptu dance sequence at the end of Billie Jean, where he almost seems to morph into something not quite human; not quite of this flesh anymore. I think it was much more than just God giving “that little man” so much talent. God was working THROUGH “that little man” in many, many ways; I suspect more than we will ever know.

      I know Speechless is supposed to be an uplifting song, but after Michael died, it was a long, long time before I could listen to it. Speechless and Will You Be There were just two songs I absolutely could not get through. Even now, they are still two of the most difficult songs for me to listen to, although I can stand them better now than I could four years ago. They are both actually very uplifting, but in the immediate aftermath of the physical loss, I think many just found them too emotional. I know I did. It took a long time for me to come around to simply being able to appreciate them as beautiful compositions again.

  11. I saw a youtube video where the speakers were arguing that Michael’s death was what they called an ‘ascension,’ a deliberate choice to ascend and leave. Of course, there is no proof of this but they cited some numerological ‘coincidences.” For example, Michael died when he was 50 years old, in USA, which has 50 states, on the 25th of June (25 is half of 50), in Los Angeles (the city of angels). He was supposed to do 50 concerts on the tour. (He was living too at 100 (half of 50) North Carolwood.) It’s hard to say b/c it seems a great tragedy that he left us so young. On the other hand, he had done a lot of work on the concert tour so that we had This Is It the movie to see him in action, even if it wasn’t the full show, (in a way, we still got the show in another form.) And of course the title This Is It –wow–could have meant he was leaving as well.

    I think Michael’s death shook the world up b/c he had been performing for so long–45 years–and so a whole generation or maybe even 2 generations had grown up with him as a constant and we just took him for granted. He was part of the culture, the air we breathed. Michael’s death is one of the most significant events in my lifetime. It’s so sad that such a gifted person was treated so badly by the media and the state. I hope his death will lead to a real change in the world–to make it a better place–for all time!

    1. Numerology is very fascinating to me. I don’t necessarily buy into all of it, but I like the idea of anything that makes you step back and go, “Wow! That’s interesting.”

      I’ve often thought it was very fitting that Michael rests beneath a stained glass window depicting The Ascension. I was one of those who wanted him buried at Neverland, but over the years, I’ve come to accept the fact that he is where he needs to be. I was just skimming through Moonwalk again, and reading some of his memories of growing up as a show business child. He said he still had the scars from every place where he had ever been mobbed. He spoke of how scary it felt to be so little in a crowd of frenzied girls, and wondering if they were going to dismember you.

      Michael gave his entire life to his fans; his adoring public. Now he gets to rest in peace. I hope he will always be allowed to remain where he is.

      Sorry that was a bit off-topic but your comment made me think of that beautiful Ascension depiction that looks over his resting place.

  12. I don’t deify Michael either , but there is no doubt in my mind that whatever his actual religious beliefs , he was very spiritually aware, and to be that way came naturally to him, so that he lived his whole life from that perspective.

    Most of the rest of us approach life from our own egos , but hopefully learn to embrace our spiritual side through our life experiences( and maybe formal religion and education play a part as well) to create some sort of balance.

    It seems to me that the people who did Michael the most harm, were incapable of recognising this quality in him , having none of it themselves. I think I understand why Michael mostly did not retaliate (other than through his songs). It would have meant challenging his own standards if he reflected their behaviour, and he indicated in various ways that he knew he would pay a heavy price for not doing so .

    I was taken by surprise when this totally unexpected comment was made about him during a recent conversation

    ” Ah but you see he made his life a work of art, and his art a work of life ”

    Sums up both him and JC rather well I think.

  13. For those of you who have not read the updated edition of Aphrodite Jones “The Michael Jackson Conspiracy” there is an odd story she tells in a chapter she titled “After Death.” Here it is:

    “On June 25, 2009, during a late lunch break, while shooting an episode of True Crime, the crew and I watched a weird thing happen. A glass table exploded right in front of us–it combusted from the heat of the sun. The glass was thick and the way it broke, the glass shattered and reshaped itself into what looked like the continents of the Earth. One piece looked like Africa or South America. It was a microcosm of the world exploding, and for a minute there, with the loud bang and the glass crashing, it took everyone’s breath away.

    “Forces that were dark and chaotic were in our midst.

    “As the crew went to deal with the damage, I turned on my cell phone and was flooded with emails claiming that Michael Jackson ‘might’ have died. I thought, no way–that was impossible. But then I started listening to my voice messages and people were frantic. One source reported that Michael Jackson had had a fatal heart attack. People were calling me to see what I knew. Media like CNN and E! Entertainment had left messages asking if I would comment on air. I returned the call to one of the E! producers and discovered that just minutes before, Michael had been declared dead at the UCLA Medical Center.

    “In my mind, I could only picture Michael, and how much his presence had overwhelmed me, day after day [during the trial] in Santa Maria. In my mind Michael was still alive. I could feel him standing near me, a proper gentleman even in his darkest hour. I could still feel Michael’s humility, and his humanity, which had exuded from his every pore.”

    “{After E! and CNN] my fiance and I made our trek back to the UCLA Medical Center because I wanted to be near Michael. We got to UCLA around dusk. By then most of the fans had gone over to Michael’s mansion gates, so it was relatively quiet in Westwood. Only a few fans remained on the street and we parked by the news trucks, where I asked my fiance to wait and watch the car. I wanted to be alone.

    “I made my way over to a small group of people who were standing in a circle with candles lit and a Bible open. Most of them were crying and saying prayers and holding hands, and I joined them in silence. Among the tearful, there was a man who looked like a magician from Ringling Brothers Circus. And there was also a young man with a long beard dressed in a white robe, dressed up like Jesus Christ.

    “Since his death, while I was procrastinating on any book update, Michael came to me vividly in a dream. The dream made me feel that Michael was trying to spark me. But what did he want? There was no clear message. I thought about how much he insisted that ‘this is it’ and how prophetic he was, the day he made that announcement to his fans.

    “Michael had the gift of prophecy. He created from his gut, and was ahead of most of us. He knew how to transfer big messages and he was right about important things. When he talked about the world running out of time in ‘This Is It’ he was right that we need to do something to heal the world and save the Earth.

    “Just think of his words, ‘This is it.'”

    “Think of them on a global scale.”

    Aphrodite Jones {excerpts from The Michael Jackson Conspiracy, 2012 edition]

    There is more I want to say, in my own words and from my own heart. I’ll try.

    Perhaps I’ll get to that in the next few days.

    1. Thank you so much for that quote from A. Jones’ new edition of her book. What a powerful story and I love her words that Michael was prophetic–I agree with that so much. BTW, in another book, by his real estate agent who helped him find Neverland, Gloria Rhoads Berlin, there is a something similar but less dramatic:

      “When I was at Gelson’s [a grocery store], on the day, hour, and minute that the publicist told me Michael had just died, I felt like a cold finger tapped me on the shoulder, just like when he played hide-and-seek with me. It was actually Michael’s voice I heard. “Hi, Gloria. I just came to say goodbye.” It’s like I could hear his words and his voice in my mind saying goodbye to me at Gelson’s Market.”

      Then she writes “His intentions were for Neverland to become a paradise for all the children of the world and his spirit will live there forever.”

    2. There is an interesting phenomenon I’m starting to notice with books written about Michael after his death. In many cases, the post-mortem chapters are becoming as long, or longer-and just as intense reading-as the chapters detailing his life. I don’t know of too many celebs for whom the AFTER story is just as important as all that came before. But it goes back to what we have been saying about the global response to his death and all that has transpired since-all that has come about as a RESULT of that passing, which is, I think, unprecedented-UNLESS we are, in fact, talking of political and/or religious figures such as Jesus.

  14. I definitely see the parallels btw Michael and Jesus. I noticed that my pastor said that God doesn’t do coincidences and that nothing is random in life. Your dream was so interesting, I wanted to note something about the number 13. I have heard often throughout my life that 13 was an “unlucky” number because of things like the Knights Templar being rounded up for execution on October 13 (a Friday) in the 11th or 12th century: however recently I have heard that 13 is the number of breakthrough. With the battle of Jericho, the Israelites had to walk around the walls of Jericho while blowing trumpets 6 times. On the seventh day, they walked around the walls 7 times and the walls came crashing down around them. Total…13. I think the reason all of those people were mad with the picture of Jesus holding MJ was because some ppl are just really religious (and I don’t mean that in a good way), they probably just hated someone comparing, for lack of a better word, Michael to Jesus. Perhaps it had less to do with some fans being atheists and more to do with the ppl hating MJ being portrayed as a sacrificial lamb b/c to them, only Jesus should be in that role. In response to you seeing the two birds and remembering the DtD poem, I saw this on Youtube last week. It’s really cool!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=iSHpk6z33Q8

  15. Thankyou Raven.. why do I always spot the mistake just as I click the “submit” button ??!!!

    Thankyou everyone else for your interesting comments.I really enjoy reading what everyone has to say.. that’s why I continue to return to this blog time after time.. there is always something to learn about Michael here.

  16. Wonderful blog which gives me the chance to share my thoughts and feelings. I have often asked myself, ‘Who Was He? The extraordinary profound effect he had on the world – and me, people sobbing on the streets, the Internet nearly crashing, and the irrestible compulsion to find out about him and buy cds, dvds, books, posters, start donating to charities, writing poetry; surfing on websites, leaving messages and comments to defend and vindicate him – still am after three and a half years; even reading the Bible. It is endless. This is something very big. To date there are now nearly twenty statues of Michael right around the globe.
    I too read about the Second Coming and wondered. I actually told someone that I believed it could be true. We may have to wait hundreds of years to find out.
    I read this in Revelations 8; ‘And when he opened the seventh seal, there followed a silence in heaven about the space of half an hour.’ Chills. Wasn’t that the time that the world ‘froze’ in shock, the Internet went down and people came onto the streets’? And Michael was a seventh son. I know this is just speculation, but even so, it makes me think.
    I so love that amazing painting; takes my breath away. Definitely an ‘Oh wow’ moment.

  17. I meant to add something when I noticed my half my message suddenly appeared when I don’t recall hitting the ‘Select’ button, so it threw me a bit. Forgive my inexperience with this.
    Firstly, I do wish your blog and all the comments could be spread around the world; perhaps print it, or a summary, on cards and leave them in different public places, like I do anonymously with ‘Spread The Love’ illustrated postcards printed with Michael’s messages, posted to devotees in several countries for that purpose.
    Secondly, I was wondering who were parallel characters in Michael’s tragic betrayal compared to Jesus’s. Who was his ‘Judas’? Was it Evan Chandler who committed suicide? Or was it Thomas Sneddon, Martin Bashir, or Conrad Murray? Who was his Pontius Pilate, who said ‘This is an innocent man?
    Is it written in the Bible or anywhere, that a similar historical event would reocurr after two thousand years?

    1. No, this is not specifically recorded in the Bible, but it’s full of other prophecies. Personally I’ve always loved reading about the new heavens and new earth (it’s found throughout Isaiah and Revelations. Have you seen this video?

      1. I had heard that from William Wagener before, but this was my first time to see that particular video compilation, with all of the accompanying photos, which was very nice.

        I also enjoyed the first vid you posted. There is still a partial cynic in me that believes such occurrences (people who think they see MJ’s face in the clouds, etc) are just coincidence, but as I said-and as per the whole point of this article-some things have certainly made me reassess my beliefs about coincidences. I could say it was coincidence that I just happened to see two buzzards flying side by side as I was thinking of Michael’s Dancing the Dream the other morning-and perhaps it was-but I believe these things become part of our personal experience. Or in other words, if it comes to have meaning for the person who had the experience, then who is anyone else to question it? In the last three and a half years, I have felt Michael around me in many ways. Sometimes I feel him in a playful way, such as the time I took one of his CD’s out of my car player, only to turn on the radio and hear Man In The Mirror; other times, as was the case the other morning during my walk, I feel him in a more urgent and deadly serious kind of way, as if he still has something important to say, and is frustrated that the separation and gulf between the spirit world and the flesh and blood world does not always make such communication possible.

        1. Here is another coincidence. 16 yrs after the History tour we got tickets for the Cirque Immortal tour and some days later for the Jackson brothers Unity Tour.
          As if that is not coincidence enough ,the History, Unity and Immortal stadium, dome and concert hall are right next to each other.
          The difference :there will be no Michael.
          Im looking forward to both shows, but it also feels bittersweet.

          Just saw your article about Prince, I ll read it in a minute.
          Speaking of coincidences. Prince’s reporting debut is an interview with actors of OZ, a remake of his fathers first and single acting experience at 19 ? yrs old.( not counting man in black and miss castaway 🙂 )
          The experience that was such a revelation for him that film had always been a passion for him and his next career step. But sadly never materialized.

          1. I saw where some reporter (I forget who) made a snarky comment about Michael’s acting. Something to the effect: “Let’s hope Prince’s interview skills are better than his father’s acting skills.” I was taken aback because so many critics praised Michael’s performance in The Wiz! Besides, his acting chops are also what helped propel many of his videos, as they were all essentially, as he said, “short films.” I am not saying Michael was Al Pacino or Dustin Hoffman, but I think given time and experience, he would have definitely shined as an actor (at any rate, he was certainly leagues ahead of some other musicians turned actor, such as Elvis). Ghosts is my favorite performance from Michael because it is so versatile (who would ever think the fat, old mayor was him unless they were told?). Perhaps it’s true that his singing and dancing talent was what made him-not his acting-but he certainly wasn’t a “bad” actor by any means. Those kinds of snarky comments that seem to be very ignorant-based just burn me up.

          2. When Michael did the wiz he had no acting experience whatsover and had not made any of his short films yet. So I think it was a very decent performance.
            I read somewhere that he was taking acting and filming classes with Prince and was going to study art.
            In LWMJ you can see 6 year old Prince talking to Bashir about Star wars and why he didnt like part 2 because it was boring.
            So its not really a surprise that Prince’s interest is also in film.

          3. That was one of the gems from the Bashir doc (in fact, there are actually quite a few despite Bashir eventually ruining most of it). Prince was already a critic even at that age. I’m sure that these days he could probably not only tell you it was borning, but could actually articulate WHY it was boring.

        2. Beautiful! I remember reading something that said when someone dies they are aware of what happens on the earth. God allows them to see their relatives but if someone is mourning them, God doesn’t allow them to see that since there is no sadness in heaven. It reminds me of that parabble in Luke 16: 19-31. To make a long story short, the rich man and Lazarus both die. Lazarus goes to heaven and the rich man goes to hell. The rich man wants his torment to end and asks Lazarus to send someone to tell his relatives, warning them not to come there. When interpreting this story, I come to realize that after you die you are aware of what happens in the earth, you still have all your faculties in tact (kind of sucks if you’re in hell), memories included, and you still have your personality and how you identified yourself. So is Michael watching over Prince, Paris and Blanket…a definite YES!! When I saw Dwayne’s video explaining how he tried contacting the Jacksons, I honestly wasn’t sure if I believed him…but thankfully he wasn’t one of those types who is desperate for media attention, lol. (I found the video by reading the comments on one of LunaJoe67’s YT videos). I wonder if Katherine, with her religious views, has seen them. Speaking of religious views, I’ve been reading articles on this site, jwfacts.com and came across some interesting stuff. There’s a page for famous active and inactive Jehovah’s Witnesses, and of course the Jacksons are mentioned first!

          http://www.jwfacts.com/watchtower/famous-jehovahs-witnesses.php

          I wonder if Michael picked Naomi Campbell for his In the Closet video for this reason, her being a former JW (although, this might not have been a huge factor for him). Whenever I hear Katherine mention the bible (which is pretty rare) I’ve never got the impression that the JWs were cult-like. I’ve also studied briefly with the JWs. When Prince and Paris were little, Katherine would bring them children’s books about their beliefs. I wonder if Prince and Paris remember them. I also would like to know what Prince, Paris and Blanket think about going to Kingdom Hall (even though they don’t go all the time). Do they enjoy it? Do they feel that they are being, “dragged to church”? (Haha, I can just imagine Blanket complaining about getting up early on Sunday and slowly dragging himself along, action figure in hand)! From what we can tell, it appears that they haven’t gone since last year. Hmmm…I wonder if they have bible study at home. In this link, Katherine talks about her religious beliefs.

          http://michaeljacksonvindication2.wordpress.com/2012/03/26/fact-checking-michael-jacksons-christian-faith-part-7-of-7-judging-michael/

    2. I think in Michael’s case, there were far too many Judases to even begin to unravel who was “the” representative Judas figure in his life.

      I like to think that, in a way, yes, the blog is being seen all over the world. For sure, I get readers and commentors from all over the globe-that is thanks, of course, to this marvelous invention known as the internet. Because of my referral logs, I can see where many fans in other countries all over the world are translating many of my articles into other languages. It is a very gratifying feeling to know that an idea-a seed of inspiration I had that morning-can be read and shared by people living on the West coast, and in all of Europe, South Africa, Japan, China, South America,the Soviet Union, and so many other places by nightfall.

      So in a way, I do feel that I am being able to reach people on a global scale.

      1. Dear Raven . When I started reading your Blog, one thing that called my attention was that your thoughts always reflected my way of thinking. I’m a person that have been reading all my life ! So , I’ve read authors that I felt empathetic with their ideas, somewhat , moderately , or very much … But never in the way I experience with your writings ! When I read your opinion on any issue about Michael , it’s like reading something I wrote ! In the beginning it was awkward ,,,now in days I just enjoy ! Whatever… Thank you for this Blog ! Thank you for uniting us all over the World , thank you for Loving Michael ! I Love you because of this . And I Love the Internet exactly because of this Unity provided to us ! When I found that I wasn’t crazy ( or at least not the only one…) thinking 24/7 about Michael Jackson… it was such an emotional comfort ! It’s gonna be 4 years in June25th and I still feel the same way ! Thanks GOD I have all these blogs and sites where I go and find people experiencing the same thing I do! I consider all as my friends! I don’t think a person not involved with Michael could ever understand us ! BTW , I like the partial cynic of your personality . That’s the part of us that maintain the balance , by questioning and checking everything . L.O.V.E. Nora.

        1. Thank you. I really started this blog because I spent so much time trying to write and articulate my feelings about Michael and my reaction to his death-what that meant for our times; for our culture. It was my husband’s suggestion that I should just start a blog. Lol, so that’s what I did!

          1. I love reading your blog Raven as like others have said it helps to know we all feel the same about Michael. I have never felt this way about anyone before and am still unable to explain it to anyone, it is so hard sometimes to put into words but Michael has changed my life also. I too think about him 24/7 and most of the time this makes me happy but the guilt and sadness with regards to his treatment on this earth plays on my mind constantly.

  18. That is absolutely great to know, and so was that video. I was smiling so much at Michael smiling and looking happy again. Back on your theme of ‘Michael and the Gospels’, I remembered a similarity between him and Jesus I tholught about some time ago. When Maary and Joseph visited Jerusalem, they lost Jesus an they searched frantically for him, in the end finding him sitting on the steps of the temple talking and iscussing deep amatters with the elders. When they questioned him, he replied, ‘I am doing my Father’s business.’ He was only 12.

  19. Oh dear. I hadn’t finished! Now Michael was only 12 when he was described as being very wise beyond his years and a knowingness about him. That should have read ‘discussing deep matters’. Apologies for the mistakes I hadn’t corrected, like ‘thought about’, ‘Mary’ and ‘and they searched…..’ Jesus actually said,’Why did you look for me. Did you not know that I must be about my Father’s business?’ Also I forgot about King Herod. Thomas Sneddon? All very thought-provoking.

  20. I too have been intrigued by the many striking similarities between Jesus and Michael. I can’t begin to describe the incredible impact this man has had on my life. I think about Michael 24/7, and keep him in my heart always.

    I don’t know where I was when I heard that Michael had died, but I was one of those people dumbstruck by the nonstop, over-the-top media coverage. Why the big fuss? Wasn’t Michael Jackson a “has-been”, whom the world had long ago drawn and quartered into pieces? It seemed so two-faced to me that all the people who had mocked and battered him to death were now witnessing as to what an amazing human he had been.

    Over a full year passed with me giving no more thought to Michael. Then late one night, bored with nothing better to do, I rented “This Is It” from the video store. That was the end of my life without Michael. I was dumbfounded by the effect he had on me. When it was over I started and watched it again. Never had a human being had such a profound effect on me. And all from watching a ninety minute concert film.

    I thought it was morbid curiosity that made me start on my mission to learn more about Michael. I was certain I would find an antidote that would break his spell on me. Surely in all my searching I would find the freak that the media had proclaimed he was. But what emerged instead was an angel. My life totally changed by someone I’d never met. I found myself wanting to be like him: more gentle, more kind, more loving, more giving. Before I ever knew that anyone else had thought this also, I found myself thinking, “What would Michael do?” And felt I was committing sacrilege, that this came even close to “What would Jesus do?”

    I was raised a Catholic—private Catholic school—the whole nine yards, and was never, not once, asked to witness my faith. The first time I encountered witnessing was my freshman year at university when I was approached by a devout evangelical Christian in the student union. I was more astonished than offended when the young clean-cut gentleman informed me I would be going to hell unless I converted to his way of believing in God. I remember being grateful after he left that I’d never been asked to witness my faith. But now, inextricably, I have to fight the urge to witness Michael.

    Michael has filled my heart with so much overwhelming love that sometimes I feel like my heart might burst. Sometimes I feel it’s almost too much to bear. I find myself doing good deeds, being kinder and having more patience, yearning every day to become a more loving, giving person, because of him. And not just giving with my time, but a need to give in Michael’s name, as in what Jesus said about himself: “Do this in remembrance of me.” For what Michael has given me—I so deeply want to pay it forward.

    I certainly don’t believe Michael was God, but I think he was a holy person, an earthly manifestation of God’s love.

    More thoughts on parallels between Michael & Jesus, maybe to share latter…

    1. I share your sentiments for the most part, although in 2009 I understood exactly why so much mourning was taking place. I don’t know how old you are, but for those of us who grew up with Michael and were there when he created so much of his magic in the 80’s, we certainly understood the extent of what had been lost. It was just that some of us needed to be reminded again. We all (I am speaking for many of my generation) had grown into a habit of taking him for granted, or just thinking of him as a punchline. Many of us still loved the music, but we had forgotten about the magic of the man who made that music. Madonna’s speech at the 2009 VMA’s summed it up exactly.

      I will look forward to more of your thoughtful responses.

  21. Another witnessing of Michael’s spiritual affect on others, read below:

    “A Stranger in Neverland” published in Advocate (magazine), May 18, 2005

    “When Michael Jackson was indicted, something in my gut told me he was probably guilty. Pity, because I liked that he was becoming so freaky over the years. As a lifelong weirdo myself it’s always nice to have a talented celebrity join the club. But a child molester? Not the kind of company I need in my club. I left it at that and didn’t put much more thought into it. When jury selection began, rebel documentary production company World of Wonder asked me and my directing partner to shoot a film about the fans who were moving to Santa Maria, Calif., to voice support for Jackson during the trial. Brilliant! Telling the stories of those that most people dismiss as strange is my thing.

    But as I researched the case, I found it difficult to get facts free of editorial. Trusted news organizations peppered words like “weird” and “wacko” throughout their coverage and took knocks at his looks, voice, and manner. The jabs at his race and gender reminded me how far we have to go in acceptance not only of sexuality but of racial and gender diversity.

    I reexamined my initial hunch. Why had I thought he was “probably guilty”? Honestly? Because I thought he was a closeted gay man. And then—snap! I had made the leap from closeted gay to pedophile all on my very own. It is one of the most fundamental lies used to perpetuate homophobia, and on some level I fell for it.

    Ten years of raiding Neverland, Jackson’s home, have turned up nothing but two art books and a bunch of hetero porn. This trial could end proving nothing except that Michael Jackson is heterosexual.

    Last month I filmed a young woman who approached Jackson’s SUV on his way home from court. She was struggling with cancer and afraid the accusation that Jackson had molested a 13-year-old cancer survivor might frighten Jackson from ever reaching out again.

    But Jackson held her hand tightly and gave her encouragement as she told him of her impending bone-marrow transplant. His simple gesture meant the world to her. With his own family hanging in the balance, Jackson still takes the time to make a difference to people. Every day.

    After we’d spent weeks outside Neverland filming the fans, Michael Jackson invited us allinside. There were about 70 of us, ranging in age from 10 to 80. Leaving our camera behind, we walked with the fans right up to the porch, and Michael stepped out to greet us. He presented his children: Prince, Paris, and Prince II (a.k.a. Blanket). The kids waved, and the crowd screamed, “We love you!”

    Once inside, I looked at the faces around me, many of them so familiar. I knew what this moment meant to them. I knew all of them were right then experiencing one of the highlights of their lives. It was then I realized, so was I.

    Inside Neverland, Michael, his children, and his parents mingled with us, making a point to personally thank as many as possible. He smiled graciously as I passed him, and all I could think to say was, “Thank you for the music.” Later I kicked myself. I could’ve said anything, but I quoted ABBA to the King of Pop.

    Since then, I’ve been unable to describe the experience without thinking I sound like a lunatic. The happiness was overwhelming. Tears welled up in my eyes. There was something almost spiritual about it. I felt kinder, more generous, a better person. I looked around at my documentary subjects, giddy with excitement, and finally saw what they had in common:

    Michael Jackson brought out the best in them.

    My friends say I’m brainwashed, a wacko. I argue Jackson’s case every chance I get.

    Whatever the eventual verdict, two things I know: One, Michael Jackson has committed so much of himself to helping others that thousands of people are better off because of him. Two, Michael Jackson is an American citizen. Just one of those is enough to let him be innocent until proven guilty.

    Give him his day in court.”

    1. Fascinating story! The part about the cancer patient reminded me of when I saw LaToya at the house in Gary last year, and there was a crying lady who grabbed her arm and wouldn’t let go. The security kept trying to get her away from LaToya, but she was patient and heard out the woman’s entire story, without once showing any outward signs of impatience or rudeness. I think this is a trait that all the Jacksons share. Perhaps it goes back to their upbringing, but they always seem to be very gracious to the fans-and Michael, as we know, was especially so.

      This article is very interesting in that, once again, we get an honest and first hand account from a journalist of the conspiracy and manipulation that was going on in the media at that time to portray Michael in the worst light possible.

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