Of all the branches of knowledge that get tied into metaphysics and/or the supernatural, I’ve always liked pythagorean numerology and geometry.
We have a penchant–as creatures of math–for symmetry, similarity, multiplication, extrapolation, congruency, measurement, and any other aesthetic of dynamic form that I’ve left out. I’m not excluded from this affinity–I’ve always found the circle, the triangle, and the golden spiral to be far holier than any written work that claims to be the word of god.
When we reach out to “god” through writings involving a wrathful thousands-year-old entity that speaks, thinks, and flips out like he’s some kind of petulant male on the cosmic playground, what exactly are we worshipping? To me, it sounds like we’re giving our time and energy to someone who looks a lot like a tyrant of ages long past, an unchanging force of absolute power and negligible tolerance for any idea that opposes
or questions its will.
Well, I’ll be damned. Your god sucks.
My god is something a little different. For one thing, I know she’s mine, that her current form is mine to behold and mine alone. She’s an idea, a conscience. She doesn’t have an agenda or a sense of frustration. When I walk away from her, she doesn’t impart vengeance or suffering–she patiently waits for me to reurn. She doesn’t speak to me, but she answers when I’m ready to ask the right question.
The most important part about my goddess, my “Lady Fate,” is that I’ve gotten to know more about her as I’ve learned about myself. Instead of representing the eternal, the immovable, and the universal, she represents the ever-changing dynamic relationship that I have with the world around me.
Just as our gods are most useful when they contain a part of ourselves, the power of our rituals and prayers work best as communications from the self to the self. These are excercises in intention, and as such, they must be meaningful to us in order to be useful to us. These communications spur us into action in the physical world. If they exist only as repetition of words, they do nothing more than work our mouths and minds.
When we’re trained into a religion, we’re forced to accept that religion’s means of communicating with the spiritual as the ONLY acceptable means of doing so. When we discover these means on our own in a tolerant and playful environment, we find the experience for more enjoyable, meaningful, and amenable to those that hold different rituals than ourselves.
So to wrap things up, I’m not saying “don’t be religious,” or “don’t be spiritual.” I’m just asking that when you commit yourself to a particular practice, know WHY you follow it, and recognize that your practices are one experience in billions. Know where it came from, know why you feel so close to it, and examine how your system can be parelleled–instead of opposed–to the spiritual systems of your fellow human beings.
The similarities of our world religions are interesting–and one of the most interesting parts is the ubiquitous theme of love. If that’s the case, let me ask in the most cliched and equally appropriate way:
Where’s the love?