I feel I've lost my faith, my connection to whatever I considered the divine... How do I get it back?
Seems to be the prevailing question. In case you haven't read the blog lately, I've been asking myself the same question. Though, I think I'm beginning to come to some conclusions. Go on this mental journey with me for a moment.
What is the cornerstone of your belief? And, I'm using the word belief, because when you're beginning to question...everything...you need to back up from a place of 'faith'. Faith is a bit more concrete. Faith is believing in something and putting your energy and time into a relationship with that something. It's abiding in a space where belief is a constant and assumed thing. So come to a place of asking yourself
Why do I believe?
Not why do I believe in faeries. Not why do I believe in an afterlife. Not why do I believe that Mercury trine Venus means the mail will run funny on Friday. But...why do I believe in anything? Does it benefit you in some way? If you made a T-chart and listed pros and cons of belief, would your list of pros be outweighed by 'fear of demonic possession' or 'fear of the devil' or 'fear of bad faeries spanking me in my sleep and not in the sexual way I like so much'? Or, would your list be weighted in the pro's category: 'feeling spiritually connected to my fellow man and the earth around me', 'feeling I'm part of a greater story', 'feeling I have more control over my life'. Whatever it is... Feeling protected by a deity, looked after. Feeling like magic is a tool of personal betterment.
Does believing in something make your time on this planet better? If so, then you've got a choice to make. And, that's something you need to understand about belief...it's a choice. I didn't choose to be born in Huntington, West Virginia to a woman from Texas and a man from a holler in Huntington. I didn't choose blonde hair or to be gay or whether I'd be tall or short. There are a lot of things about my life and the way I see myself or others see me that I did not and cannot choose or change. But, something that every person must choose for themselves is belief.
What your belief looks like is going to be 1 in nearly 7 billion, because your circumstances and quirks and needs are different than everyone else's.
psst... Here's a secret: that is totally and completely OK!
But, when you're in a place of questioning... Is the Goddess real? Does magic exist? Is Christianity/Judaism/Unitarian Universalism right for me? Am I just the dream of some guy named Phil? The first thing you must do is FORGIVE YOURSELF!
I realized something... I do a lot of questioning and have done a lot of hole poking. And I think that I hadn't sat down and thought out what that meant. If you just spend your time poking at theories and searching for evidence and coming up with something to say, you're not spending your time following that logic stream to a degree several levels out. If this isn't real, and that's not possible, and there's a guy on the Colbert Report saying we pretty much know everything that exists in the universe...and now we know the full boundaries of the sandbox and have names for just about everything...what does that mean? Well, I think the reason that I got slammed so hard a few weeks ago with this near-crippling anxiety is that it would naturally mean we're just a scientific accident that happened on one planet in the entire known universe. We mean nothing, came from nothing, and return to nothing.
And, for me, the first thing I had to decide was whether I was going to accept that. Whether that was better for me. Whether I wanted to live in a world that had no belief. I was reminded, both positively and negatively, of an article I'd written called The Importance of Belief. The negative side was the thought process that this universe doesn't have an ounce of what we'd call justice or love or fairness, and anthropomorphizing reality itself doesn't get me much of anywhere, because there are so many flaws with that. A compassionate, living, breathing deity doesn't allow a shooter to wildly destroy the lives of a couple dozen people in an elementary, and if you tell me that your deity would allow it because it's part of some plan I don't comprehend, then I'd just like to say...
FUCK YOUR DEITY.
Because that means your deity is a sociopath that needs to be put down. So, belief in a god or multiple gods or sentient energy that creates and destroys...that's...big. And it's a bit bigger than where my head is at right now.
But, there's a comfort received, that warms me a bit, that alleviates some of the anxiety in that many of history's most respected scientists have said that the more they analyzed the universe, the more they examined reality, the more they believed in a god. Sure, there are a lot of atheist scientists out there. That's the side of the T-chart they landed on. It works for them. It makes sense to them.
I'm the nearly 27 year old (Oh my god, when did I get old) that searches out Disney movies still. That wants to read a good fairy tale over the latest James Patterson (bad example, as he put out a Harry Potter/Hunger games thing...but...whatever). My inner kid is alive and well, and I was reminded of a passage in the Bible from the book of Matthew (18:2-4):
2 Jesus called a little child to him and put the child among them. 3 Then he said, “I tell you the truth, unless you turn from your sins and become like little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven. 4 So anyone who becomes as humble as this little child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.
Many people feel that this passage is an instruction to have a 'childlike faith'. To believe not without question, but with wonder and marvel at the creation and let that be evidence enough.
I got this sign in San Francisco at the shop owned by the collective throuple of Devin Hunter, Chas Bogan, and Storm Faerywolf called The Mystic Dream. It's a beautiful wooden sign that just says 'WONDER'. I think that's going to be my motto for 2013. Wonder. Marvel at the beauty of the creation. I've come down on the side that belief is better FOR ME than non-belief. Now, what I'll do with that belief, whether I'll get to a place of faith in something...that's going to be my path and continued making of daily choices. But, I'm in a place of belief right now. And, it feels good.
Remember, there was a bang. There was something before the bang. And the universe exists in a space. Reality is made up of things that blink in and out of existence. Energy is neither created nor destroyed. Wonder at that. Marvel at that. Everything - in the biggest sense of the word - came from somewhere. That is where I've begun.
Also, admitting to myself, that rainbows exists whether a dog can see them or not. Dogs can hear a whistle that I cannot. We see the tiniest, itty bittiest segment of the light spectrum, which means there are colors that really exist that I cannot and will never see. And, every now and then, out of nearly 7 billion people, 2 people find each other and fall in love.
Life is a fucking miracle. And I believe in that.
Love and Lyte,