2019 has been an intense year for me spiritually, during which I have gone back through beliefs and ideas I have had over my lifetime of what has essentially been a study of religion for me. I have been in pursuit of Truth, chasing God, as it were. What I have observed in the course of going through all of that collection is that my understandings of "god" has evolved, transformed, and when it comes right down to it, I am not sure what changed more - my understanding of "god" or my understanding of myself.
The track I followed is a microcosm of the track many of us do, I am not original in that. Like some, I began with the idea that there is god out there, apart from me and we aren't connected really unless I do certain things to rectify that relationship and association because I was born wrong and did wrong before I even knew my name. Scary stuff, that notion of Original Sin and damnation, and a lifetime of seeking to apologize and reconcile enough to escape punishment for something I had nothing to do with.
That sort of model is awfully human, awfully faulted, awfully finite, and as I have grown in my grasp of God, it increasingly seems like madness itself. It does not fit in with the systems I see all around me, of Nature and the general benevolence of Creation, the magnificence and impersonality of cause and effect I can see in physics and the Cosmos and in my personal life. My indoctrination was great to buy into the system of religion, but, in the end, I have finally rejected it. The God I know loves like nothing else that ever was. He/She/It/They had noting to do with creating any of our petty little religions and schools of thought down here except in the most vague ways. We made all of those and in the course of doing so, with the best of intentions at the beginning, we ended up doing God a major disservice by insisting that any religion was the Truth, the Arrival Point, The Revelation.
I have come to see that religions are alright as guides, which can lead us in the better direction to find our own moment of Divine Connection. If you find the one that clicks best for you, you can have that moment. But, I think that once one actually connects and meets God, one needs to let go of religion increasingly and hang on tighter to God and allow God to help you know what God is all about to the extent you can grasp such a massive, Creation filling, reality. To say that anything that big can be fully grasped and understood by a human brain is ludicrous. But, we can do better as we persevere.
When I read over physics, I see the definition of aspects of the Divine, qualities that Creation has. When I look over my small bit of land here in Spring and early summer and look at the flowers blooming, I marvel at the variety and intricacy of each type and see that God is infinite in expression and manifestation. God is everywhere, everything. I breathe God in with the oxygen I need, I exhale God afterwards. His light in the day time makes me blink and reach for my sunglasses. I feel what God has healed and inspired by example when I see my daughter running toward me and laughing as love for her wells up in my heart. The Creator's fingerprints are everywhere, within and without my personal physicality. Once you see them, you cannot unsee them.
In brief, I started out thinking only God was out there, somewhere. I moved on to seeing God as being in my heart once I accepted Jesus as my Savior. Later I grasped the idea of The Holy Spirit as being a third part of what God was in total, sort of that spiritual essence and force I sensed sometimes. My juvenile understandings of what a real God should do and the power of prayer eventually led me into the free fall of Agnosticism where nothing was real or true out there except this remembrance of the love of God I had felt and somehow still did. Vodou beckoned about then and the joyousness and sense of family, the explanations of many things I had seen in my life appealed strongly and I spent a couple decades as a High Priest actively in it, and still remember it fondly. Terribly faulted, but it gave me a great deal, perhaps as much or more than I ever gave to it.
I could summarize and say for those of you readers who see what I am talking about, that Vodou marked the peak phase for me of seeing many spirits as being out there and being responsive as well. I lost my lingering ideas of some of them being evil or malevolent. Some were certainly opportunistic and negative, but not intrinsically evil in themselves. Vodou did a lot of healing for me, and brought me back to God in a way outside formalized Christianity and I saw more of the Love and less of the Hell and Damnation.
I expected to stay there and was happy, but, my journey is not to find a religion that answers my questions and search for God, because none of them do, it turned out. A lot of human faults and failings and egos ended my interest in practicing as a Priest within my Vodou clan and I moved on after shutting my own house down and have kept growing on my own, studying alone like a spiritual hermit, and now I could not go back if I wanted to. I found out we make the lwa, we project them to people our world and they are made by parts of our selves and certainly can take on depth and a great deal of power and life, but at the end of the day, they are me. I can take it all back and realize I can do everything they did, I am everything they were. I still get visits from some of them but, I smile when I do and I know them for what they are. Beautiful little bits of me and my own creative energy. They taught me a great deal, they are quite real, yet, not for everyone. I understand now the purpose they serve and how they work in that religion and why they work.
Kundalini rose for me over a year ago, now, and is what sent me off on a tangent for a while. It severely stirred my inner pot and set a lot in motion, including some of the insights I am sketching in for this post. As if it brought it all together to be understood, reviewed and that book closed preparatory to the new book opening now, where I see I am literally a drop of God myself, I am, in a sense, god of my own life and need to grow up and look to my Source and start learning how to be more like my Source, learn what I am expected to know and be and accept responsibility for the bad and good I do myself now I am seeing more all the time how one action can set many others in motion, for better or worse in this little world. I have a lot more, and a lot less power than I ever thought before, and I am not alone, either, it turns out.
The answers are not out there somewhere. They are not in the opinions of other people, though those can sometimes be useful pointers. The answers are inside of us, each of us, and the deeper we delve into them the more we expand out into everything else, ironically, and find out we are part of it all in a way far beyond the ideas of such a thing, and it is all fueled by the never ending love of God, returning to Him and flowing back out, like rivers of life, forever. I am finally, at long last, at the start of the real Journey.
I wrote this one for myself. Enjoy it if you wish to. You are loved.