It is funny when someone asks, “What do you know?” in regards to spirituality. I have thought about this a lot. Being a writer one would think that what I know can be concretely put into words, ironically that is not the case. What I can put into words is the exploration and the paths that have brought me to my faith as it is now. What I know of my God is; that in being alive, in focusing on what is good, and loving and kind; on what is just, and compassionate; that by following the laws in accordance with my beliefs; that God is in me as I am in Him. I know that life goes on, that our core being, that energy that brings us to life, is eternal. I have faith in that. I have faith that we have as much a responsibility to make where we are now as beautiful and wonderful and caring as we can make it and I know that my God knows me.
Many years ago now I was driving on a highway through Wyoming and I saw a billboard. A beat up looking billboard worn with time and the elements. It said, “What do you think about God?” I have often thought about that sign. It was one of those moments that time stands still for me. It is etched in my mind. I remember seeing it and thinking about it. I have thought of it many times since, almost everyday.
As I go down the highway of life my thoughts lean more and more toward my understanding of God. Of what we are to be, of how we are to be. What has helped me to understand God as I know him, is exploration. Exploration of wisdom and parables that allow me to describe what I know of the feeling of being with God and he with me. This is where I find exploring all religions and spirituality so important. It is where I find that we are all more the same than different.
In the teachings of the Dalai Lama, and Rumi, and Buddhism I find truths. In Native American (North and South) and Celtic religions and belief I find truth. They are universal truths. I find the same universal truths in Christianity if I look from one end of the denominational spectrum to the other. On one end of the spectrum, there are healers, there are those that speak in tongues and those that interpret speaking in tongues. On the other end the strict Orthodox religions and core beliefs. Intertwined in all of that are the sacred texts of Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism and Islam.
With so many things the same, how can it be that we are all wrong, even in each others’ eyes? From one view point to the other? I remember one story from the Bible distinctly that weighs heavily when I think about all of us. That is the story of Babylon falling. Simplified, God was angered and divided the people by changing their languages. I think in many ways that we now create our own division by language. Instead of making a definition of the word “love” bigger, by defining it we limit it. By seeking to define God by our limited knowledge of language are we in fact limiting our understanding of Him?
I have heard, because it is Buddhist we reject it or because it is not Christian doctrine we reject it or in a very ugly part of Christian history we must redirect and correct the Native American Beliefs. At one time when the world began and the truth was known and shared, was it not shared in common? There are aspects of all religion that are the same theory. They are positive attributes of our faiths. I believe at one time we were all one. We all knew the same. We all understood the same. We all knew the core truth of our God.
What stops us from fully understanding our God ? Is it the division which put in place that limits our understanding? What do you know???
To return to the billboard I saw in Wyoming. I am sure that as I traveled down that highway my thoughts continued as to what I thought about my God. And as I drove, and as I thought, that billboard ingrained itself in my mind. As I drove down that highway thinking of God as I understood Him a saw another billboard in the distance. As I got closer I saw that it said…
“What does God think about you?”
©Adrienne McLeod 2011