Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Let All Things Now Living

a few days ago i was driving down the highway looking at the trees that lined the road.  as i surveyed the beauty all around me, beauty i am often oblivious to as i drive, i began to think about the inadequacy of the word "god" to refer to That which is the creator of all the beauty in the world.  i thought of a blog post by tara branch on the wildmind site i read a while back (i highly recommend this site and bodhipaksa's blog "on practice" at this site).  in her post, she told the story of a conversation that took place an an interfaith meeting in which the term "Great Mystery" was the name that the participants, including christians, wiccans, atheists, and native americans, agreed was an acceptable name for what we commonly refer to as "God."

there is much to be said for calling God the "Great Mystery."  as st. paul said, we are looking at the Infinite as through a cloudy mirror or a lens that distorts our perception.  i would suggest that other forms of address, such as "First Cause" or "Great Mind of Love," are other possibilities.  it is so difficult to conceive of a mind that created all that is, that set the natural laws in motion, and that continues to observe creation with a benevolent love and compassion.  

as humanists would suggest, we are, in a sense, on our own here.  the universe continues to function without any intervention on the part of a creator, and the forces of nature move along with sublime indifference to either joy or suffering.  chance is an important factor in our lives, and we have no real control of the events in our lives.  

yet, we are not passive players in some cruel play.  we have the faculty of mind to chose how we perceive the random happenings of life.  that, it seems to me, is one of the great joys of creation.  this Great Mind that has planted goodness, love, compassion in our hearts and minds is a part of each of us, making us all one with creation.  the pulse of a loving heart courses through everything that is, despite our frequent failure to act with love.  it is, in fact, our choice to ignore the heartbeat of love that brings about so much suffering and cruelty in the world.

my prayer today is that we embrace the Great Mystery, the Infinite, the First Cause, the Great Mind of Love that flows through creation and that is embedded in our deepest being.  may we bless one another and may we seek happiness for ourselves and all beings.  shalom.

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