Tell me about the God you don’t believe in. Perhaps it is a God, who resembles a wise old man in the sky, with a beard who knows everything you do and is going to make you pay for most of it. Perhaps the God you don’t believe in seems a lot like the Big Kahuna who has everything as he likes it, is none too available unless maybe when there is serious bad stuff going down. Even then, contacting him, is an iffy proposition. Or even better, your non-existent God perhaps never did exist because look at all these truly horrific things happening here on Earth. “How can there be a God? That God is a real myth.” Maybe the God you left was that one the nun spoke of when you were seven, saying, “you better sit there and don’t even think of going to the bathroom unless you want to see this ruler imprinted on your hand. God is watching you and you are already in serious trouble”
Perhaps your discarded God wasn’t there when you were abused or felt abandoned. Or perhaps that God wasn’t around when your mother suffered and died too young with cancer. Then there are lots of folks who talk about a God found in large buildings where you dress up in your best clothes, pledge money to belong, serve on at least one committee and usher once a month. Perhaps that works for some folks.
I really tried to find God there for a long, long time. I loved the music and the stained glass windows and loved all the sense of connectedness with other people. I would have so loved to have found God in such a place.
I finally though, admitted to myself that I did not believe in any of those kinds of Gods either. I was hoping God would show up somewhere along the line but honestly, I was truly adrift for a long time over this. However, we all go through our own process of coming to a knowing of God Energy and Presence, or not.
Actually, I prefer any of these terms, Divine Presence, Spirit, Great Oneness, All That Is, the Great I AM to” God”, because I seem to be always stepping on other people’s views of the God they don’t believe in. The images connected with the word “God” are so loaded that it is a challenge to even use the word “God” when I am speaking about energy which is not in form, invisible, all knowing, powerful in untold ways, eternal, and present everywhere.
Is it just possible, that there is some type of Divine Presence which does not fit neatly into our present views and beliefs about God? Might we have our version of the God we don’t believe in, because we have never had a personal relationship with the Energy of the Great I AM? Perhaps we have only heard about this energy from age old stories which simply can’t be true. Or perhaps we have only experienced other people’s views of what God energy is and what it is supposed to do for us. Perhaps what we have heard of God, we don’t like and don’t believe. Other people’s stories seem too impossible to believe, so God has got to be a figment of people’s imagination.
I was raised in a religious practicing family. When I was a teenager, I became an internal skeptic. Then I became a benevolent humanist and agnostic. I felt better trying to be a nice, good person but I did not know if there was a God or not. Then I ran into a few brick walls, chronic debilitating back pain, a serious family illness, humongous fear and I became a seeker.
One day through the “grace of God”, it seems to me looking back, I entered into intentional Silence and something amazing happened. I ran into God right in the middle of the Silence. I guessed it was God. I had not really expected to find that clarity, peace or knowing in that Silence. But there IT was, staring me in the face.
Then I began to share what I was learning with others and lots of other people also began to have similar experiences to mine and began to share them. They also moved from seekers to knowers. We had a movement happening. We had moved into the space of people who know there is a God force because we spend time with that force repeatedly. After a few months of entering Silence, we knew that Energy Force was always inside of us.
Then we began to see that after we had had that time of Silence and connecting in, we were more loving in all ways. We were more centered. We were more balanced and content. This became my own definition of God Energy then. All the questions I had, seemed to melt away. The experience of Divine connection which I found in the Silence was all knowing and I found that totally fascinating. It was as if through osmosis from somewhere in the Silence, I was learning about the real God, at least the one that was real for me. (stay tuned)
This is great. My immediate question is how do I go into the Silence. Can you give me some things to try – some ways into this Silence that have worked for other people? I think I need a “Beginners Guide to Entering the Silence” where I can connect with the oneness, the godness, the goodness.
Thanks for your comment. Interestingly, my next post is on Entering Silence through meditation. I hope you will find some helpful ideas in how to begin meditation in that post. Here’s the link, http://robbinshopkins.com/2009/04/entering-silence/