Sunday, July 26, 2009
Sunday is always an interesting day for this Sane bloke. Most Sundays you will find me at a random church sometimes in a random town, congregating with members of a religious cult who have beliefs far from my own.
I have a history as possibly being the most hated man of faith in the world of the religious. I've been excommunicated, booted, and spit at with words of hatred and vitriol. I've been asked to never open my mouth, never share my name, never come back.
And yet I continue to go, visiting congregations of all faiths, creeds, races. I worship with them but outside of them, I listen to their sermons, I watch with open eyes when they pray together.
I am a man of faith, but a man without religion. I found my faith through reading, research and much introspection after perusing the Scriptures that many called the Bible. I researched outside of the Book, finding an old codex here or there, finding words of other authors from the same time as that Book was probably penned or the stories told.
And yet I don't call myself Christian. I don't partake of the creeds, the sacraments, the masses and liturgies. I don't see the point of religion.
Today was good for me because I joined with a good Christian friend and a good atheist friend. After the early morning service, I met them both for breakfast at a local cafe (great eggs and coffee) and we talked about faith.
As many know, I run my life in ways that are contrary to what society thinks is right. I debate and appeal my judgment, my desires, my own logic-founded results often to try to come up with new ways to resist the river-flow of life that often takes many over a waterfall. I prefer to swim against the current to spawn rather than fall over the cliff with the current of society's movements.
I believe in a creator, but I don't believe in God as most Bible-believers do. The word God, as written in modern Bibles is ghastly in terms of translation and transliteration. It's a failure of a word, a single word that to many means so much, but in the context of the Story is useless, wrecked, wretched and uninspiring.
I believe in the man called the Christ, the Messiah, the Savior, but I don't hold the faith that most Christians do regarding the long term results of what they believe. I don't want to be born-again, and I don't believe that is even possible. I don't believe in sin, and I think the Scriptures prove that it doesn't exist. Hell? No such thing. Punishment, salvation, redemption, sacrifice? Not important anymore.
I've never heard God's voice in my head or in my heart, I don't cry at the idea of Jesus being crucified for me or anyone else who lives today. I am not shaken by the scare-tactics of the religious cults, but I don't harbor any grudge or guilt at their penetrations into the minds of others, the brainwashing that happens when anything is drummed into your head over and over and over.
And yet, every moment of every day, I stand in the presence of proof of God's existence, just in my own body, mind and soul. I truly believe that this Creator of all things had produced me before my parents' egg and seed mixed, created me with a genetic structure that gave rise to my talents and my failures, my tools and my thoughts. I don't believe in karmic justice or fate, but I believe that each person is planted with that soul before they come into existence. I don't agree that life begins at conception or at birth, it doesn't matter to me.
I said I've never heard the voice of God, but I see Him in everything around me. There are a set of undeniable "laws" that the world is governed by that are outside of governments and rules and human regulation. It is these laws that I live my own life by: I must eat, I must drink, I must sleep, and on and on.
And yet there are many who castigate me or don't believe in my own faithful worship of my creator through acts of interaction with others, for others, for myself. "How can you have sex with women if you follow the Bible?" or "So you think it's OK to get drunk?" or "Your job sounds criminal, if it hurts others how do you match that up with what you believe?"
I rarely answer them except for those who want to sit down and hear me out. Few do, but those who do usually have a life-changing experience after they contemplate what I have to say, how I sell it, and what my points of logic are.
And yet, I don't believe that faith or religion or a belief in God is important to people. My friends who are atheists probably have the best point of view regarding God. My most faithful religious friends have crazy views and ideas that, to me, seem like a great waste of time and of life, but I don't ever try to change them of it.
So what's the point? There is none, except to remind myself that every moment of every day I take my breaths, knowing and trusting that all is good with the universe, that there is no punishment or retribution awaiting me moments after my last breath is exhaled.