Friday, 4 February 2011

The God within - In the beginning was the Word

God is not a Hebrew, Hindu, Buddhist, Catholic, Muslim, Protestant,  or Confucian. God simply does not represent any of the  world's religions including any pagan beliefs. God did not write or dictate the Bible, Koran, Torah, The Book of the Dead or any of the world’s sacred texts. That is not to say that these writings do not express certain truths about God, but rather they contain imperfect representations of who we believe God to be. While human consciousness has grown with our understanding of evolution it appears we have not allowed this same process to bring about a greater understanding of God. However, the nature of God is beyond human understanding and must not remain fixed or restricted to any one definition. God is everywhere present, including the here and now. God is not elsewhere, such as only in a distant heaven, not in the future so as to be available only when one gets to heaven. So what has become of the unconditionally loving God who remains  as close as the breath we take? Or do we prefer to believe in a distant God possessed with many of our own imperfect human qualities. For many God is portrayed as a being who responds with anger when we fail to obey his rules or wishes – a God with pagan qualities who can only be appeased through complete obedience and submission through special rites and sacrifices? Who is that God who is primarily interested in our sins rather than our potential? How can we ever learn to hope, trust and love such a demanding divinity? Under such conditions how can we learn to discover the God within? More importantly how can we begin to trust and love our neighbour and ourselves? Is it simply that our ego prefers to deny or refuse God’s immediate presence? Or do we believe that we are somehow not worthy to receive his attention? How can we begin to learn again what we already knew before we were born?

I believe this Divine Being is not the least bit concerned about our religious affiliation or lack thereof. This is a Being who does not reward, demand, punish, keep a record of our ‘rights’ and ‘wrongs’ , play favourites or  interested in our praise and uniform expressions of worship. God simply IS and is present in each human being; as such created to be loved by him UNCONDITIONALLY as we are – not as some would have us be. We are all equally God’s holy creatures. God calls us to become as One - not separate from others or from Him. Each of us is created in His likeness – not special but with a unique character and ability. I believe in a God who is beyond space and time – an Infinite Being who is the nurturing mother and father we may never have experienced. I believe that when we finally begin to recognize the God within we will discover that miracles are not only possible but will become natural every day expressions of a growing and evolving faith.

Most Christians are aware of Jesus through the various Bible stories. But recently Fr. Richard Rohr spoke of the importance of establishing a relationship and experiencing Jesus so we can “hear him, see him with our eyes, and touch him with our hands”.  This requires a movement from a static story to an internalized ongoing experience of Jesus. Recognizing that God (Jesus) already resides deep within each human being should reveal to us the depth and intent of God’s desire to establish a complete Oneness with us.   The deeper that relationship becomes the more we will reflect the created image of God – not only through ourselves but for also for the benefit of others.  We will no longer need to compete for God’s love but become willing sharers of that love.

I like to think of God as communicating with us intuitively  - in a manner that reaches beyond words, thoughts, actions, and traditional teachings.  There is inside of each of us a receptor that cannot be detected by any scientific or medical means but will readily respond to God’s calling whenever we desire to listen. This Voice is distinct and clear. It is a call that resonates, deep inside, with complete love and peace. This is a God who communicates with the infant in the womb, the old , the infirm, the faithful and the faithless - the One who lives in the heart of both sinner and saint. This is the Deity who is beyond words and description – yet speaks to us in a universal language that is absorbed rather than heard. This is the Voice that spoke to us in our mother’s womb. The Voice that speaks softly and gently with a wisdom and acceptance that reaches far beyond worldly understanding. When we "hear" it we will immediately recognize that the Word was with us from the beginning and will remain with us beyond time and space.

The Lord created me at the beginning of his work,

the first of his acts of long ago.

Ages ago I was set up,

at the first, before the beginning of the earth.

When there were no depths I was brought forth,

when there were no springs abounding with water.

Before the mountains had been shaped,

before the hills, I was brought forth—

when he had not yet made earth and fields,

or the world’s first bits of soil.

When he established the heavens, I was there,

when he drew a circle on the face of the deep,

when he made firm the skies above,

when he established the fountains of the deep,

when he assigned to the sea its limit,

so that the waters might not transgress his command,

when he marked out the foundations of the earth,

then I was beside him, like a master worker;

and I was daily his delight,

rejoicing before him always,

rejoicing in his inhabited world

and delighting in the human race. - Proverbs 11-31

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