Monday, November 3, 2008

Monday evening

I don't belong to any religion, organized or not. I cannot say that I am an atheist, because I like to, and, to an extent, do believe that there is something beyond the mere chemistry of life, and that we have something equivalent to souls. That when we do good things, it saves up like coins in a piggy bank. That there is something after death. Call me weak, but if I ever truly believed that nothing at all limited our actions, and that we just disappeared completely after our deaths, I might be so shocked and scared that I really wouldn't be able to live at all.

All the same, I cannot say that I really believe in God, or anything like that. Not in the way that I trust any deity completely, or that I worship, or that I follow creeds and scriptures.

Still. It must be nice, I think, to have that everlasting comfort that there is something to help you along your way, to catch you when you fall. It must be very nice to be able to say, with the utmost confidence, that your loved ones are in a better place after their passing from this world. And I'd like to say to them to my friend, as words of comfort, that she will always be there looking over her--but I'd feel like a hypocrite, because I'm not really sure if it's true. I can almost imagine how purposeful your life must be, with a definite goal and set guidelines.

This isn't the sort of thing that keeps me awake at night, but I do give it thought from time to time. Yes, a deep spiritual connection seems very appealing, as does the special connection a religious person feels with other religious persons--and with their object of worship (this sounds disrespectful?), but I'm not sure I want to belong to a religion. I certainly don't want to inadvertently end up suffocating under the weight of centuries of oppressive rules and bigotry that do end up with so many religions (what am I doing, talking about "religions" as if they were tangible objects--like cars--that I can research the specs of and then select?).

Do I want to "find religion"? At the moment, no, I don't think I do. I'd like to take aspects of it. I must admit, there are many doctrines that I disagree with, and could never, ever agree with. And there are so many interpretations--with so many variations that are fundamentally believed as true--how can anyone think this transcends man? Literal readings (here I'm thinking of the Bible) are cumbersome and also clash against what we modern people find "right" and socially acceptable. Isn't this the sort of thing that's supposed to stay constant?

And where does it put me, sitting at the edge, fickly brushing my feet through the surface of the waters, not firm at all in any position, always gingerly respectful of anything even remotely close to religion at the fear of offending... anyone?

And I'm just saying--by itself and not trying to imply anything at all--it really must be nice, to have something to truly believe in from the deepest reaches of your soul. Just for this, I do admire you.

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