I started the morning as I always do: coffee, prayer, internet. Walt has become the first stop, because he's a dawn patrol guy. After Walt's place I check out Gagdad Bob, and Mushroom, and then proceed to lighter fare.
I try to begin the day grounded in awareness of the spirit. All too soon the headlines, and real world events charge in like some sort of mudslide. As of late I've had little tolerance for it. My interior landscape already looks one of Heironymus Bosch's nightmares, and I don't need to throw more monsters into the mix. There was a time when I thought that the right drug, the right counsellor, the right prayer, would clean up the mess in my head. No. The mess is my head, and the mind parasites that dwell there will not suffer eviction, at least not through any means I've yet discovered. So where does that leave Spirit, religion, the prayer thing? If we were talking about a physical ailment few would hold out hope for divine intervention in the shape of a miraculous cure. And it's an all too common story, the supposed 'man of God' caught in some unholy act or other.
"AHH," someone will surely say, "The fellow probably didn't really have Holy Spirit, or he was insincere in his prayer, or he lacked True Faith, or he was just another hypocrite."
I don't buy it.
I would bet that such individuals probably have a deep faith; that they have many times prayed their knees sore trying to defeat their inner demons in the spiritual equivalent of house-to-house urban warfare. I would bet that they exhausted the last efforts of will, threw themselves on God's mercy, and got up with the same set of troubles they knelt down with. Just like the person in a wheelchair who pledges eternal faith and gratitude to God for the chance to stand and walk again.
So God ain't Santa Claus, jwm. We knew that already. What's your point here? Is it to discredit the whole business of faith?
No. I'm just trying to get a handle on it like everyone else. An anonymous poster over at One Cosmos left a poem in the comments section today. Here's an excerpt:
When the eyes of my eyes were opened/I saw wonders that can't be spoken/You took my hand when I least expected/And blessed me with your Golden Presence . . . ./ Is this why in your Heart I found mine,/And in your face I see a Treasure?/Do the tears of joy as I contemplate you/Pay tribute to your sweet embrace?. . . .
It is not my intention to mock the person who wrote this, or to doubt his sincerity. I've heard plenty of religious folks, Christian, and Buddhist, speak of this sort of spiritual euphoria. I don't think they're making it up. It's just never worked that way for me. Oh, don't get me wrong here, I've heard 'the voice'; I've had my share of transcendent experiences. Occasionally there comes a flash of insight, a glimpse into the depth. And after having been with One Cosmos everyday for the last few years I have had my eyes opened to the awareness of Truth, if not the firsthand experience of it.
I don't look to God to solve my problems for me, that's all. God ain't going to solve them. Or make them go away. God will, and has grown me deep enough to know that wrestling with my inner demons is part of my job here. And like it or not, I have to step in the ring. Unlike pro wrestling, God doesn't fix the match. Not even for himself. The thing is- I know that I don't fight alone.