Hello God? It's Me, Lisa
ORIGINALLY POSTED: 12/7/2008
Ok, first of all, for anyone who gets the title reference, KUDOS.
Second, there is so much on which I want to blog. One issue was brought up by Javi, my ever-thoughtful fellow seeker. How would I define “God”? Lest I offend anyone, please know that as long as your God doesn’t advocate killing me if I say the following, I’m quite open to whatever anyone wants to believe. The whole letting go of judgment thing? I mean it and try to live by it as I can. I may disagree with you, but just as I want you to still like me even if you disagree with me, I’d like to still like you, too. (Like, for real.)
So, God. God, goddess, spirit, “the force”…words always seem to get in the way. For those who don’t know, I was raised in a Christian background, though not diligently. We learned the basics and the morals, I was baptized Methodist, attended a year and a half of confirmation classes as a high schooler under the Lutheran faith, and attended church each Christmas and Easter. Beyond that, it was hit or miss. In college, I did the whole rebellion against religion thing (seems quite trendy these days) and studied Wicca (Paganism). I was introduced to this religion by a movie (The Craft, I believe) - I was fascinated that there was a religion that advocated everything as One.
That, my dear friends, was the true start to my understanding of spirituality. Everything as One FELT right. It went beyond logic - it was a spark that ignited every part of my being. Paganism, Wicca in particular, soon started to feel to ritualized and I let the practices go. (I’m not saying that it is, just that it wasn’t right for me at that particular time.) Aspects of it stayed with me - reverence for the earth, the belief in some form of energy that we cant understand but can somehow be tapped into…and many other things, including the Threefold Law (I can’t remember the exact title) - basically stating that what we does comes back unto us threefold. So don’t screw someone over cause it’ll come back to bite you - conversely, the more good you do the more that will come back.
I was married in a Mennonite Fellowship church by a husband and wife ”team” who were absolutely amazing. I was still questioning my spirituality at the time and still held a slight grudge against Christianity (and my husband didn’t really care one way or the other). Our ceremony included readings from the bible, but was very open and liberal (the wife often referred to god as “she” during the ceremony).
Then life, school, kids…the works. All throughout, I’ve held a deep longing to keep spirituality - that sense of “Life” - alive through the daily grind. Part of that is understanding “God”. For me, as for many it seems in my generation, I’ve forgone the view of God as a man in white robes sitting watching us all. (Kind of a bummer - he seemed like such a nice man.) As I’ve examined (very much so on the surface) various religions, I’ve fortunately come to love Christianity again. My main interest at this point lies with Buddhism. I mention these because my definition of God is, I believe, the same as the core beliefs of all of these religions.
For me, God is no different than you, me, the blade of grass getting stepped on as we cut across the lawn or the drop of rain that falls onto the tip of our nose and leaves its damp trail for us to contemplate. God is no different from the love that arises for our child or spouse or parent, the hate that arises towards our enemy, the lust that arises for the stranger we happened across, or the thoughts that accompany all of these feelings.
Buddhism asks us to accept nothing on mere faith - to question, examine, feel the answers as they come to us. It is exactly this that I do every moment of my being. God is the light glowing from my computer screen, the burn I feel in my eyes because I’ve been staring at it for too long, and the dreams that will accompany me as I fall asleep tonight. She is the motivation that will help me arise tomorrow. She is in every question and every answer, but is actually neither. It’s funny - only when I let go of asking do I really find her. (I use “she” here for lack of a better word. Just tired of using “he”, and I’m not sure of a word to use otherwise.)
For example, if I sit gripping the wheel of my car while Dilana screams in the back because Tyler just took her toy but he swears up and down she’s just hungry and I wonder where my calm is and why can’t I feel it and I’m a yogini I should be able to do this…I’ll only get more upset. But when I let go, be with the noise that is, the beauty of two healthy kids and the blessing of having a car (without actually “thinking” of any of these things) - the calm, the peacefulness - God - is there.
For me, without heaven and hell and sin, things just are. Chaotic, maybe, but in such a peaceful way. (Yup, chaos theory I think though I’ve never really read much about it.) All of these disciplines are starting to pick up on how interconnected everything really is - us to our environment, us to one another, our mind with our body, etc. How fascinating that science and religion seem to be coming to common grounds (albeit still quite a way to go).
I hope to expand on this more later, but I really need to get off the computer (or at least attempt my other blog). Stay tuned.