Nothing like a deep, thought provoking question to start the day off right. It is often assumed that because I don't attend a church, because I have had a certain level of cynicism about organised religion in my life, because I have come out and said that I feel this way and because I admit freely that I am a left-thinking, socialist that this must mean I'm without God or a belief in God.Well I thought I'd set the record straight.
The truth is that yes I believe in God. Before you send the missionaries in to capture my soul for your particular denomination or religion, take a moment to read about my God. You might want to focus on someone a little less steadfast in their beliefs.
My God is not your typical run-of-the-mill deity. First of all, he's not male. She's not female either. In fact my God is sexless. Or maybe my God is sexiful(nice juicy new word I just made up!). It doesn't matter because it's not important that my God be either.
My God is not concerned with any of that. That's just stuff for fun and procreation and well, God doesn't procreate that way. That's nature and science, physical stuff and while I believe in a strong mind, body, spirit connection, I think God's domain is the spirit so the rest of that stuff, well that's all ours.
My God also doesn't live in heaven. I don't believe in heaven. Well i don't believe that there is a place where we go when we die, paved with gold and pearly gates and all of that. I think there is peacefulness to be reached for, but I also believe you can attain that in this realm. I believe that God is the divinity that is in us, inside all of us, the combination of our individual spirit and the spirit of every man, woman, child physically living as well as those passed on. Want a nice analogy?
My God is like the ocean and we are like the raindrops. Some of the raindrops are already in the ocean. Some are going to fall into the ocean. Some are leaving the ocean through evaporation. But there is a cycle to it. An intelligence. It always happens. The raindrop must come from the ocean and inevitibly it must return. Does that help? So keep that picture in your mind as I further present my beliefs.
My God is simple. You don't have to do anything, God does it all. We live in the flow of all things. We just need to ride the waves. To further my analogy above, imagine a raindrop fighting against the ocean? Can it do that? No. And we can't either. We need to blend with other raindrops to make the ocean bigger and stronger. Alone we are just a little drop, combined with every drop in the ocean we have unlimited strength and potential.
My God does not distinguish between man, woman, child, black, white, heterosexual, homosexual, sexiful(juicy word) or any other label we as humans apply. Those are human things. God is divine. The humanity in us feels the need for labels. The divine doesn't. They are handy tools for living as a human but they don't apply to the spiritual part of us.
My God doesn't care if you have a piece of paper announcing that you have married this person or that person because remember we are raindrops and God is the ocean and well, paper gets wet in the ocean so what's the point? To take that further, my God doesn't care if the person you fall asleep with and wake up with is your permanent, committed spouse or a friend you needed some time with. I believe that nothing you do is shameful because you are without shame, you are divine. You are a piece of God. Shame weakens you, moves you away from God. It's not certain acts frowned upon by society that move you away from God, it's believing they are wrong that do this. Remove all judgement of right and wrong from your life and you will have a better understanding of my God.
My God doesn't judge. My God doesn't hold court over the good and the evil. My God knows there is no such thing and that every thing is as it should be. The good and the evil are equal partners in teaching us how to move along in this flow of life. Let go of the idea that God favours one over the other, is responsible for one or the other and will reward one over the other and you will be closer to my God.
So, you ask, if this is how your God works, what is the motivation to be good? If we aren't out for the reward at the end then what's the point. If the evil of the world are the same as the righteous of the world then what is our responsibility in life? Where do we come in? If it's all out of our hands why not have our fun and get on with it? Let the good times roll!
My God tells me that what we are is divine. What we have is free will. Our free will is not in that we get to choose where we go. That is out of our hands. Our responsibility is to try to become a part of the larger divine, the source, the ocean or as most people call it, God. We are not supposed to do good because we fear consequences or seek a reward. We are supposed to do good simply because we are supposed to do good. To get closer to God we have to be like God. We have to let go of the labels. We have to let go of the judgement. We have to move forward with trust and love and compassion. The more we are able to do that the more we become like God.
Many of you might be familiar with the adage "don't sweat the small stuff". Well to know God is to have the ability to not sweat the big stuff either. To feel at peace. To have a knowing, an understanding that we are exactly who we are, that we are exactly where we are supposed to be and to learn to feel peace in that place.
In this moment. Right now.Take a moment. Breathe. Breathe again. Imagine yourself completely at peace. Imagine you could help every single person on earth. Imagine you could feed the hungry, imagine you could heal the sick. Think of how you would feel if you could do that. Feel that peace and feel that happiness. That is God. Now, take it one step further. Go out and do it. Find someone to help and do it. Random acts of kindness is a good start. I have a cousin who puts $5 Tim Horton's gift cards on police cars. She's got it. She's close to God in those moments. Her children who witness her doing it are closer to God just for being witness to it. The recipients of those cards, they are closer to God for being made to feel appreciated by all they do. $5 well spent. Hold the door for people, help mothers with strollers, smile at people, kiss your children and your spouse. Let go of any expectations of immediate return. Just remember that feeling you had when you imagined that you saved the world. That's what you are aiming for.
I'm going to go a bit further because I want to be clear on one thing. While I have not found my truth behind a church door I do not for one moment minimize the journey of those who find their solace there. Truth is subjective and your truth and my truth will not be the same. That's OK too. My God tells me that every journey is unique and equal and every position on every journey is equal. Those who are just being born are as close to God as those who are just leaving this earth and I believe all those in the middle are as close as well.
Life just knocks us off the path sometimes or maybe sets us on a path we hadn't expected to be on. But at any moment in time we are able, through acts of compassion and kindness, to get back to that closeness with the divine.So if you want to send your missionaries out now I'd be happy to invite them in and listen to them. In fact I've always done that. As long as it is with the understanding that when they are finished I get to tell them about my God with equal passion for my personal truth.
A friend told me once, all roads lead home. That feels true to me.Namaste