Posted on Amazon.com:
Steps to Salvation is a MUST READ. The author, Shlomo Attia explains that he experienced a Near Death Experience and while in that state, was charged with returning to life because “his work wasn’t finished!” Apparently he was to return to present solutions to the problems that have plagued mankind for the past millennia, in which we keep repeating the same mistakes, always expecting different results and failing. Once again our civilization stands on the precipice of a New Dark Age — and apparently Shlomo was charged with presenting some new solutions which if taken under advisement might prevent Western Civilization from once again going down that road.
The novel takes place in the year 2412 (400 years into the future), and proposes that at that time, we will already be living in the “Messianic Era…: which according to Jewish tradition “…will be one of global peace and harmony, an era free of strife and hardship” [Wikipedia]. Looking back over World History, much of the strife the world has experienced and continues to do so in our times is due to “religious conflicts” directly relating to religious DOGMA! Let us remember that until the Enlightenment, political power rested within the Church. Many of today’s seculars also rebel against the concept of G-d or Creator precisely because they reject the political power that religious organizations (men) try to exert over their lives by manipulating religious beliefs to control them. In other words, it still comes down to politics masquerading as religion and the bottom line is still the ambitions of INSIDERS to exert CONTROL over the masses! It’s still all about Power and not really about the Creator.
Shlomo thinks outside the box and presents a vision of the future in which the world frees itself from this religious strife, and fulfilling the Jewish aspiration and prayer that “On that Day the Lord will be ONE, His Name will be One” by positing that without cohersion, mankind has accepted the concept of the One G-d Religion! Brilliant! No more strife amongst men that “My G-d is Better than Your G-d!”
So much for the solution to religious strife.
Shlomo then posits solutions to helping entrepreneurs through a lottery system of funding, solutions to education, the prison system and the rehabilitation of criminals, and other challenges facing present day society.
Characters in the book are descendants of Historical figures, including the progeny of Hitler, Kissinger, Mao, etc. — those who are the progeny of evil doers are restricted to a colony in Africa called Arisha, and have to devote their lives to the study of their ancestors, their wrong-doings, and admit remorse for the evil they have wrought, and ultimately have to pass a test in order to get to see the rest of the world. This is a totally new way of looking at things as they are and have been in the world, and how we can avoid repeating history.
In these grim times, the book is refreshing, presents interesting solutions and a light at the end of the tunnel — demonstrating that there is hope for a better future after all. I wonder if applying his solutions can help usher in the Messianic Age. Without going into details to give away the solutions, Shlomo presents a solution to the current Middle East strife particularly with the Muslims and their hatred for Jews. Read the book to find out how this can be brought about without bloodshed!
I read the book in 3 days and could not put it down!
Thank you, Gail. I am glad you enjoyed the book.
I enjoyed having the opportunity to speak to everyone who came out to Tropical Acres to support Steps To Salvation last Saturday night. Here’s the first of two videos taken by Boris Balaban. In this one, I talk about my motorcycle accident, near death experience, the evolution of my novel and what all of us must do to bring Salvation to earth.
I’ll be talking about Steps To Salvation with Daria on Writestream Tuesday on July 1 at a special time of 7 p.m. Eastern. As always, you can listen online by clicking on this link or by phone at (347) 945-7246. The chat room will also be open.
Writestream features different authors in various genres, with a focus on the independently published. One of the things we will discuss in addition to the many themes and concepts of my book is the collaboration, writing, editing, publishing and marketing process. New technology has created many opportunities for independent authors to bypass traditional publishing companies and take their product directly to the consumer. That means you have to first know your audience, then find them on social media and engage them. You also have to do “old-fashioned” things like local book signings and speaking engagements at organizations that will be receptive to your message, or at least interested in inspiring discussion among an audience.
For me there’s a bit of a challenge in that readers who will like my book’s political themes may not like its spirituality and the concept of The One God Religion. On the other hand, those who embrace the concept of One God For All might not necessarily like the politics. I am looking forward to addressing these challenges and welcome debate and discussion with Writestream’s listeners.
Tune in on Tuesday, July 1 at 7 p.m. Eastern.
DD: “Shlomo, your book is definitely making people think! What prompted you to write something so unique?”
SA: “I have always been a person who questions everything. For example, from the time I was a little kid I was constantly challenging my religion. I grew up in Tel Aviv in a traditional Jewish home and had questions about the nature of God and what I was being taught. Sometimes this got me into big trouble with my parents and the rabbis. But I was like that about everything.
I love to learn ways to make things better and pass that information along to help people all over the world. But with the book, the process started with a horrible motorcycle accident I had in 2003. Well, at first I thought it was horrible, but later I realized it was the best thing to ever happen to me. I was pronounced clinically dead and while my body was in a coma, my soul traveled to the other side where I met with ‘The Council’ — three angelic beings. They greeted me as if they’d just seen me a second ago, which was very confusing because at first I thought they were doctors.
I was pretty angry when they asked me what I wanted to do. I demanded to know what kind of hospital I was in and what they were going to do for me, since I was the one with a broken body. They just shushed me and said ‘we recommend you go back and finish your work.’ That’s when it hit me that I wasn’t in a hospital but on the other side.
“I initially thought I was in a hospital because there were people waiting in line (yes, there are lines on the other side and you do have to wait when you pass over). I thought they were patients and that the angelic beings were doctors. At that point in my life I really didn’t believe in God or an afterlife. Before it was my turn to see the ‘doctors’ I saw my whole life running like a slide show — very fast. Yet I was able to understand and see each one with precise detail.
In these slides I saw all of my f*&#-ups from childhood to present. I felt a terrible stomach pain which was very strong and very unique — unlike anything I’d ever felt before. Even though I’d had many bodily injuries in life and am familiar with pain, this particular pain was very different. Kind of like an urgent need get to the bathroom, except one is not available.
“Moments later, I noticed everyone around me was wearing what looked like white hospital robes. Yet I felt exceptionally healthy, relaxed and comfortable — just like everyone else did. I also felt as if I was home, which was very strange because I do not like hospitals. But I was happy the stomach pain was gone. I also noticed that there were no religions – everyone was treated the same. I comprehended that very quickly which is why I feel so strongly about the hatred that exists on earth in the name of religion. My advice to readers is to avoid hate because you will regret it later on.”
Partly due to my study of history and partly due to my experience of crossing over to the other side, I firmly believe that religion has been a source of conflict on earth. I am not talking about a belief in the God of Abraham, Isaac, Ishmael, David, Solomon, Jesus and Mohammad but the man-made structure of religion.
In Step One, high school senior Nathan Rothschild enlightens the class about the history of money, which is intertwined with religious hierarchies:
“Mr. Rothschild, please talk to us about the role of the banking industry during the End Times versus its role in Salvation Time.”
“Yes sir,” the student began. “Back in the centuries leading up to the Armageddon War, the money supply was controlled by elite bankers. These bankers had a lot of power. They could manipulate currency at will and impact national economies for better or worse. They were driven by profit, greed and selfishness—the opposite of positive capitalism, which helps citizens become financially independent.”
“Mr. Rothschild, when did this money-manipulation begin?” Mr. Bauer followed up.
“Sir, this practice goes all the way back to Biblical times and the famous story of Jesus chasing the money traders out of the temple. Back then money traders controlled the money supply. They made it impossible for practicing Jews to pay their temple tax when they came to Jerusalem because devout Jews could only pay the tax with a coin called the half-shekel of the sanctuary. This shekel was a special coin—an ounce of pure silver without an image of a pagan emperor. That’s why the Jews believed it was the only coin God would accept. But thanks to the money traders it was also really hard to find.
“These money traders also included the Jewish elite and the Jewish leadership. Because they had a money monopoly, ordinary Jews were forced to pay whatever high price they demanded to get the shekels they needed to pay the temple tax. To Jesus, this was completely immoral and unacceptable. It also violated the sanctity of God’s house. That’s why he threw the money traders out of the temple. This was the only time he ever became violent during his ministry, at least that we know of.”
“So Mr. Rothschild, are you telling us that the problem with money traders began during the time of Jesus?”
“No sir, the problem with money traders started long before him,” the student answered confidently. “Two-hundred years before Jesus was born, Rome fought with money traders. Two early Roman emperors tried to rein them in. They reformed usury laws and limited land ownership to 500 acres. Both of those emperors were assassinated. Then in 48 B.C. Julius Caesar took back the power to coin money from the money traders and minted coins for all Roman citizens.
“With a positive money flow, Caesar built great public works projects and earned the love of the common people. But this also made him a target of the money traders. Some historians believe Caesar was assassinated because he took back the power to coin money. No one knows for sure if that’s true. But one thing is true: Caesar’s death meant the end of abundant money in Rome. Taxes and corruption went up and the Roman money supply went down by 90 percent. Regular Roman citizens lost their land and their homes. Because the Roman people lost confidence in their government they refused to support it. This plunged Rome and Europe into the Dark Ages.”
Later, Rothschild discusses the unholy alliance between the Vatican and the Medici and Borgia families:
“Then in the 15th century two powerful families in Italy linked the Vatican and the global banking system. The Borgia family took political power at the Vatican and the Medici family created the modern banking system.”
Before the student could continue, Mr. Bauer jumped in again.
“Tell us Mr. Rothschild, where does the word ‘bank’ come from?”
“Yes sir,” the student responded, “the word ‘bank’ is derived from the Italian word ‘banco’ which means ‘bench’. During that period of the End Days, only Jews were allowed to trade with money. So you’d have a Jewish guy sitting on a bench in the marketplace for the exchange of money and bills.”
“Very good, Mr. Rothschild, you may proceed.” The student drew another deep breath before answering.
“The main practice of the Medici Bank was the secret movement of money. Even though it went through cycles of prosperity and hard times, the Medici Bank built a political power base that put the Medici family on the Papal throne 10 years after the Borgia’s reign ended.”
Here Mr. Bauer interrupted again. “So are you telling us Mr. Rothschild, that there was collusion between the financial industry and the Catholic religious hierarchy known as the Vatican?”
“Yes sir,” Rothschild replied. “And Rodrigo Borgia had a reputation for being the worst pope of all. When he was elected in 1492 he took the name of Pope Alexander VI. He had already fathered four illegitimate kids, and the rumor was that he fathered at least three other kids while serving as Pope. But the Vatican was famous for its immorality and corruption during this time period, going back to Pope Sixtus IV in 1471.
“Even though he was the head of the Catholic Church and supposedly God’s earthly representative, Sixtus had been anything but godly. He took the papal practice of nepotism to a whole new level by rewarding his nephews with money and power. He also used them as agents in the power politics of competing Italian states. At this time in history, Italy was not a unified country. It was made up of independent city-states that had their own governments.
“These nephews thought up diabolical plots for their own selfish reasons. One of these plots even ended with murder–the murder of one of the Medici’s in the Florence cathedral during High Mass. One of Sixtus’ nephews learned his lessons so well that he achieved even more politically when he was elected to the papacy as Julius II. Pope Julius II actually directed military campaigns. He also commissioned artwork from Raphael and Michelangelo. That’s why we have the beautiful frescoes of the Vatican and the Sistine Chapel—and that’s also why we had the Protestant Reformation.”
In the book, this student’s answer is the longest one of all of his classmates and goes into much greater detail than I am posting here. During the collaboration process, I wanted to present a vision of Salvation Time in which all people freely moved into The One God Religion as encourage by Moses himself in Step Two:
“It hasn’t escaped our notice here on The Other Side that most of the hatred, violence and animosity on earth is perpetuated in the name of religion. This rancor between competing theologies would be amusing if it wasn’t so destructive and deadly, not to mention completely absurd. Why is this fighting completely wrong and unnecessary? Because there is only one God.
“We’re all here—Jesus, Mohammad and me—and we know it’s the same God. So what’s all the fighting about? The world cannot move into Salvation Time with all of this hostility, bitterness and war perpetrated in the name of organized, divergent religions.”
Jesus and Mohammad nodded their heads in agreement as they remained seated in their designated chairs.
“So now that I’ve identified the most pressing problem on earth, what’s the solution?” Moses continued. “First, we must unite all religions under one very basic, fundamental truth: there is ONE God for all. This God does not belong to any one religion: he just IS. He’s not exclusive to Judaism, Christianity, Islam or any other organized religion. It’s the same God for all souls, all living creatures—the I AM WHO I AM; the Alpha and the Omega. He has no beginning and no end.
“And for the Creator life on earth is all about becoming a better person, doing productive and uplifting things for your fellow humans, and making life better for everyone—not perpetuating an endless cycle of violence in his name. For that reason Jesus, Mohammad and I recommend that you shift the world into a One God Religion on earth, where you will help to unite people instead of separating them. In order to achieve this noble goal, you must incorporate the very best of every existing religion and integrate it into one major religion to create unity among people all around the world, rather than hatred, war, violence, poverty, death and destruction. It’s unity over hate, love and connectivity over fear and loathing.”
Moses, Jesus, Mohammad and a host of Advanced Souls who were once religious leaders on earth then offer their assistance to the Salvation Twelve in moving people willingly toward The One God Religion. However since fiction must also reflect real life, I realized I had to make it clear in my novel that those who wish to keep their End Days religious denominations are free to do so – it’s just that the power structure these various religions had before have been extremely reduced. And MOST but not ALL people freely move into The One God Religion, with an emphasis on freely.
The greatly reduced religious power structure is presented in Step Three when Mr. Bauer and his class visit Rome and the Pope:
Pope Pius greeted the crowd warmly. As he stood behind a specially erected marble podium in Saint Peter’s Square, he felt honored that they’d taken the time to visit with him. Standing among a small gathering of about 50 people including the Arusha contingent and 200 media members, he was both exhilarated and humbled by their presence. At first the students were surprised by the meager attendance, having intensely studied the papacies of the End Days. But Mr. Bauer discreetly reminded them that they were now living in Salvation Time where the Vatican’s influence was greatly diminished. Popes were still revered by those who’d remained Catholic and others who respected the rights of human beings to worship as they pleased but they no longer enjoyed the trappings of immense power. And since the majority of people had freely chosen to join The One God Religion, popes in Salvation Days no longer attracted the huge and nearly unmanageable crowds of their predecessors.
A Caucasian version of Mr. Bauer, Pope Pius appeared to be around the same age, an affable man with a genuine interest in his fellow human souls and a sincere desire to maintain the peace and prosperity the world was now experiencing. In stark contrast to the popes of the past he was dressed in a simple black suit, crisp white shirt and black loafers. His neatly cut gray hair bore no semblance of a fancy mitre, just a plain, purple cap; his hands were free of anything resembling an ostentatious staff, allowing him to touch each visitor on the shoulder and shake their hand as he extended a personal greeting.
After delivering a few remarks he stepped down and began to mingle with his audience, working his way through the line accompanied by a lone security guard while the magnificence of Saint Peter’s Square—with its exquisite columns, ornate statues and dancing water fountains—competed for his attention. Spielberg of course, had been busily filming this wondrous scene while the rest of his peers had stood awestruck as they contemplated the God-given talents of the human architects. For Anwar Sadat, Saint Peter’s Square provided further proof of the righteousness of his decision to become a priest in The One God Religion; for Nathan Rothschild, an affirmation that something beautiful and timeless emerges out of even the worst of circumstances. This beloved Roman attraction might have come into existence because of rampant corruption but he couldn’t deny it was also a tangible reminder of the talents with which God endows every individual. In spite of his earlier fears, Rothschild found himself renewed and inspired by the experience.
Once the Pope had acknowledged everyone else he turned his attention to the Arusha travelers. Extending his right hand to Mr. Bauer in a firm shake, he placed his left hand on his shoulder and thanked him for his excellence in teaching. Mr. Bauer graciously accepted the compliment before facilitating individual introductions of Pope Pius to each student. As they’d been instructed all of the teenagers displayed the proper etiquette as Pius inquired about their journey thus far and engaged them in conversation about their families back home. After he’d completed a meaningful one-on-one with all 21 students he announced his intention to escort them through the rest of the Vatican and encouraged them to ask as many questions as they’d like.
No doubt, this new streamlined papacy will offend many but I truly believe the excessive hierarchies of religion, along with big government, are a threat to freedom. In Salvation Time, the Pope is still loved and respected but he’s truly a man of the people who lives a simple life and greets all of his visitors personally.
You’ll have to read the entire book for the full picture of my views about religion. In the meantime, I welcome your feedback here. Health debate is good for all of us. God bless you.
These are first mentioned by one of Mr. Bauer’s students in Step One. Then in Step Three the class travels to Jerusalem where they see the original depiction of The Twelve Holidays of The One God Religion at The Temple Mount, modeled after the ancient King Herod Temple. I took some of the best holy days from each of the three major End Days religions and combined them into The One God Religion of Salvation Time. What do you think?
The Twelve Holidays of The One God Religion
1. Rosh Hashanah
2. Yom Kippur
3. Abraham’s Rock
4. Simchat Torah
12. Salvation Day
A big number of Palestinian Muslims have decided to convert from Islam to Judaism. Barukh HaShem. Besides the fact that some are aware of their Jewish ancestry, a increased number of Palestinian Muslims in cities such as Hebron and Shekhem (Nablus) have converted back to Judaism and Samaritanism as well as learning the truth in Judaism and the Torah. Because of their fear of Hamas persecuting them for accepting the one and only G-d, where all prophets are equally loved by him in Judaism, many of them practice secretly in their homes, other have gone to live in Israel. G-d bless them and guide them to Torah learning. Amen.