Those of you who’ve been with me for a minute know all about my struggles and trials regarding religion (particularly the judeo Christian concept) and my constantly evolving views and beliefs.
When I initially began my blog I was hardcore Atheist. However, I came to the realization (as I was initially loathe to do) that my feelings originated from a place of hurt (if you read my coming out story and other postings you would know why). Therefore, I began seeking definitive answers in other religious faiths. However, by then, after delving into science and evolution (I love Darwin), in my efforts to determine the origins of the world and the meaning of life (in general and my own in particular) I could no longer base a belief on faith in ancient mythologies. I was Neo and I’d seen the outside of the Matrix.
So, in order to give my poor head a break, I put this issue on the shelf for a minute. Then, for whatever reason, I started attending church again (a gay affirming, non denominational, Christian church) and found myself enjoying it. I thought to myself, “Maybe I do believe again?” Yet, the moment I tried reading the bible, in context, I knew I was still a heathen. Then it dawned on me that I still found a certain level of comfort and inspiration in those pages (except for all that sexist and homophobic stuff). I no longer cared so intensely about the idea of an anthropomorphized personal God. My sabbatical away from God and religion was the best thing I could ever have done for myself. Now, whenever I listen to the pastor I am inspired by the message, yes; however, I automatically tune out all the supernatural aspects of the sermon. When I walk away from church I feel just as fulfilled simply because the message was applicable to me in some significant way. When you strip back all of the pomp and circumstance of religion all pastors are self help gurus. I appreciate that now and take it for what it is.
I’ve not prayed to a God in ages. I’ve not felt this overwhelming need to develop this connection to a God either. Yet, I write in my gratitude journal, meditate, and remain aware of everything and everyone around me. Sometimes, I’ll even sit in my dark closet just to make my world quiet. I’ve found extreme enlightenment in those rituals.
I’m not sure either way whether there is or isn’t a God in the universe. I really don’t know. And I think it’s cool to just not know somethings. I’d like to believe there is something (or someone)out there who knows all, sees all, and hears all. Yet, I’m just as enamored–and comfortable–with the possibility that, as Dr. Pangloss stated in Voltaire’s Candide, “This is the best of all possible worlds.” Moreover, I’ve learned to connect and relate spiritually to the world around me without having to kneel before a God (well unless the God in question is Mehcad Brooks…teeheehee. Uhm totally blasphemous but…uhm…yeah). Anyway, even though I no longer believe in a God, per say, I still find peace and enlightenment within all the religions, and belief systems, of the world. Moreover, I love to implement those principles into my everyday life. Whether it be: Christianity, Buddhism, Taoism, Wiccanism, Hinduism (one I’ve found particular interest in lately), or New Age (e.g. astrology, tarot cards, and etc al)…
In Wiccanism there is a proverb that states, “If it harm none do what thou wilt.” Essentially, what that signifies is that if your beliefs and practices do not cause harm to others (but uplifts instead) then it is a good thing. My goal in life has always been to be a really good person. I live by that every single day. Most important of all I try to be good because I want to be…Not because I fear any divine reprisal of some sort. I want to live my life as a creator, not a destroyer. I’ve realized that I don’t need to follow a religious stricture to accomplish that. As the Dali Lama says, “My religion is kindness.”
Don’t get me wrong I still see the magic within the universe. I’ve never had this nihilistic view that we’re all born, live, and die (that just seems really boring). True, there are tons of biological/scientific reasons for the meaning of life. However, I constantly wonder why does life have meaning at all? Why does everyone and everything fight to preserve life? In my opinion the universe itself is a living entity. We have life because it wants to live. We are all just extensions of the universe being alive. Is the universe a thinking entity or is it just LIFE in all of it’s splendor(Just a question I have and I don’t care if I ever truly know)? Once I read somewhere that some of our molecular structure is composed of star dust. That’s why I like to think that when I die I’ll become a star or something (haha). I’ll forever be able to watch the many galaxies and universes…
As it is I feel thankful just to be alive everyday. Instead of caring so intensely about what’s going to happen to me when I die (whether it be an afterlife or an eternal slumber) I’ve learned to love every single day that I’m here on this planet. It is really special to have a life. Everyone and everything wants to live. I truly believe that we all have a purposeful life, regardless of what we believe (or don’t). My belief is that every religion is an extension of one truth…Life. Life for me is the truth.
I don’t know whether or not there’s a: Yahweh, Jesus, Allah, Zeus, Poseidon, and etc al. Yet, I don’t find fault in anyone who does worship and celebrate those deities either. Whatever enables you to cope with the world surrounding you is wonderful. However, what I do ask is that you don’t hate on me–or others–who don’t share those views.
I chose the song “Comeback To The Middle” by India Arie because that statement reflects where I am right now. I’ve reached my positive center. I’ve finally found the balance that I need in terms of my own views on the idea of religion and Deity.