Sunday, December 05, 2004

Spirituality And Falling Short Of It

(c) Andy Ternay
  • Rocky Mountain National Park in summer. This is Long's Peak, the highest point in the park (14,000+ feet) as seen from Bear Lake. I give thanks to the Goddess that I have seen this with my own eyes, that I have stood there. I pray that I will have a chance to take my child there, that my child may experience the wonder and joys of this world we live in.

  • This is one of those pieces I have hesitated to write because of the emotions involved. I am also grimly aware that I am so spiritually immature that I will not express these things well and my command of language is not sophisticated enough to express what I truly feel. When I am trying to talk about the Divine I am unable to do so intelligently. So this is from the heart.

    I know that I can go into any Christian church and find my Goddess. If they are speaking about a God of love and compassion, a God who seeks to unite all of His children in His light, then I know in my heart that I worship that same God. When they speak of Jesus Christ, Lord and Savior of limitless compassion, that is the Goddess that I worship.

    The names are different, but the Divine Nature is the same. The material drapings are irrelevant distractions, the verbal labels are no more than convenient ways to attempt to describe the indescribable, to contain the uncontainable. My concept of the Goddess is a feeble construct I use to try to understand that which is beyond me.

    By the same token, I can enter any Christian church and if I find that they speak of a god of judgement and wrath, if they speak of sin, obedience and punishment, then I do not know that god at all. I think that the practicioners of such faiths must be worshipping their own fear and anger. It is like a sort of perverse idolatry.

    I have felt that same alienation from Pagans. I have no patience for those Dianics who regard males as inherently evil; my Goddess did not make anyone inherently evil.

    I believe in my heart that the Divine is universal; that Allah, Jehovah, Vishnu, Gaia all are but understandable representations of the Creatress. Charicatures we have created as a spiritual shorthand to get to the important part: the spirituality.

    . . . we discovered that we did not need to consider another's conception of God. Our own conception, however inadequate, was sufficient to make the approach . . . We found that God does not make to hard terms with those who seek Him. To us, the Realm of Spirit is broad, roomy, all inclusive; never exclusive or forbidding to those who earnestly seek. It is open, we believe, to all men.
    The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous p. 46.

    So why am I here? What am I supposed to do with my life?

    I believe that it is my job to carry the message; the message that the Divine is within each of us and that the way to reach your own concept of God is through the hard work of loving yourself. The only way I know of for me to learn how to love myself is commit myself to the hard work of loving others. When I say love, I mean to stretch myself out from my comfortable, safe boundries and help another human being grow spriritually. That is what love is to me.

    I'm not actually very good at any of this and frankly, most of the time I'd rather be looking at pictures of naked chicks or reading a good book. Most of the time I have no clue how to go about living as a spiritual person and I feel helpless to help those in need. I can't even get along with my family!

    Nonetheless, this is the task that is appointed to me and, I suspect, to every other human being on the planet. So I had better learn how to carry this attitude of faith into the realm of politics.

    This one is going to take a lot of prayer, a lot of meditation and making a lot of mistakes and then going about making amends. Hard work, but worth doing.

    Now, I am off to look at pictures of naked chicks before I go to bed. Blessings to all.