|Calvin and Hobbes - Bill Watterson|
*Maybe I should be depressed about this, but while I am not eagerly awaiting my death, I know everything has its time. I am going through a religious questioning phase right now about the existence and role of a theistic being. In other words - do I believe in a God with a big G or not? For now, I am starting to feel or believe that there is a cosmic greatness out there, but that my existence influences or is known by that great being is about the same as my influence on that ant hill in the yard at my parent's place a thousand miles away. My universe is too big to know of every life form I have some connection to and potential power over. Those ants walk their little bits of food and building pieces to their hill and I never know of their existence and will not know of their deaths.
This is how I am seeing the great cosmic force that is out there. This greater entity, whether it is powers of nature and science regulating everything, a spiritual being, or the combined energy of all life and forces in the universe, shapes our entire origin, life, demise and whatever is next. It is much like me starting my truck. I installed the engine, hooked up the fuel, and turned the key. The engine starts and I drive away. Even though I am cognizant of the crank shaft pushing the pistons up and down, I am not in control of or care about each rotation in the engine as it spins at 3000 rpm. It is going on its own. Along my trip, I may drive over a pebble that spits out into field and later is used to become part of a groundhog's nest. All of this action is set into motion because I put the engine into my truck. Am I cognizant of each of these interactions? No. It is just the whole system running on what I have done.
I am that little pebble thrown out into field. God, the entity, the forces of nature, or whatever don't care about that pebble or don't even know its existence. This moment of me is just one of the smallest parts of the countless interactions and beings in the universe moving along its own path.
Part of this realization came from looking at the faith I learned along the way. I looked at all the death, catastrophes (natural or man made) and wondered why an "all loving being" could do that, or at least, prevent them? Why would an omnipotent being care about such petty things and how it is worshiped? How could a knowing and loving entity allow different religions to kill in its name? For me, why would a supreme being care about gender, politics, or different religions, race, sexual orientation, etc.? Is the answer truly "42"?
Some of y potential (but not all-inclusive) answers are:
A. It acts like a kid having temper tantrums, not knowing the damage it does.
B. It is something that goes beyond war crimes, genocide, and any crimes of humanity or nature we can understand and makes Hitler, Stalin, and their ilk (speaking of which, why would a deity allow these people to become what they were in first place?), look like doves. (Take the Noah story - why kill every human and animal on the earth, except those chosen few, just to make a point. That alone is an atrocity that goes beyond anything witnessed in history. I am sure that at least a few of the humans wiped out in this moment of wrath were good people that were just unfortunate enough to be in the wrong place. I wont even go into the horrors in the book of Job.
C. It is something that set the whole engine in the universe going and lets things play out by the rules of nature, science, and free will of the mind.
Maybe it is time for me to realize I am just that speck that Calvin alludes to. This is not depressing, it is freeing. I am released from this burden of the exceptionalism of organized religion where each faith knows it is right and all others are wrong. I get to do what I do, help others, try not to hurt, maybe create a little beauty, make things better and then snuff out and become part of the great cosmos again.
George Carlin summed it all up so well.
See I don’t worry about the little things: bees, trees, whales, snails. I think we’re part of a greater wisdom than we will ever understand. A higher order. Call it what you want. Know what I call it? The Big Electron. The Big Electron…whoooa. Whoooa. Whoooa. It doesn’t punish, it doesn’t reward, it doesn’t judge at all. It just is. And so are we. For a little while.*I am not criticizing anyone's beliefs. I am criticizing my own path and analyzing my own journey and what I am slowly learning. I am not saying what I am sharing is the answer to it all. No one knows that for certain, but maybe only what is certain to them.
I promise nudes and shallowness, levity, and other things in my next post.