“War is Peace; Freedom is Slavery; Ignorance is Strength; Trumpery is Reality”
Sitting in a church last Sunday afternoon, enjoying a concert, I let my mind wander. At least it keeps me off the streets, I thought. I’ve also said that about people worshiping on Sunday mornings. This parish belonged to the denomination in which I was raised. I no longer believe their teachings nor practice them, other than by trying to be a decent, moral human being. Perhaps I never did follow this religion; I was too young to understand. I don’t need this kind of support in order to live my life, though I have no problems with those who do so tolerantly.
I have no problems with those who do so tolerantly.
This means I have no one to give credit for my success and nowhere to dump my problems or seek forgiveness for my shortcomings and weakness Sometimes, it would be good to shirk responsibility for my actions and their consequences, dump them on someone else. Since I believe everything is connected, is, in fact, a living entity of many manifestations. whomever that would be would only be me. Perhaps, I will end up hoist on my own canard. I do not believe in heaven; other than the vast cosmos we help make up. Those people who say we are living in hell are also correct, because we are part of the whole, like the blood cells in our body. We and they are merely parts of unimaginable living organisms. Would it not be better to wonder about, love and praise all life, seen and unseen, known, unknown and as yet uncomprehended.
Knowledge and faith are not mutually exclusive.
Instead, we choose to see one species, humans, as superior to everything, not only on this speck of earth in the vastness of space and time, but also that very vastness of space and time. I realize most people don’t think about this in concrete terms; it’s too staggering and frightening. Still, it has been inculcated into our very existence on an unconscious level. Thus our invention of our gods. Only hubris, fear and insanity could convince us to claim we are above all life, matter and awareness. Except, for the parts we cannot face or understand, which we attribute to deity. Philosopher Alan Watts once compared the people on our planet to the apples on an apple tree: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZbThJg6ehU. As apple trees grow apples, this planet, and for me, the universe peoples. Just as all trees are not apple trees, all planets are not human planets, though they still are fruitful.
Apples can be picked from the tree and eaten, the cores discarded. Or they may fall to the ground, rot and rejoin the soil. Each apple appears separate when picked and eaten or on the ground, but there’s the lie No matter how it happens, seed to tree or constituent elements to nourish the soil, the tree and ultimately us, the circle and balance of life is perpetuated. Do we truly believe we know more than the world? Obviously, the way we act says we do. How about you? Is your belief so rooted and ingrown that you cannot accept facts, so arrogant that you believe your faith has all the facts, is the be all and end all, so self-righteous that only your understanding of the cosmos is true? What a small and petty deity you must worship.
Just as all trees are not apple trees, all planets are not human planets.
Any belief based on fear, hatred, arrogance and intolerance is dangerous. I don’t say or think anyone shouldn’t have faith, only that they remain open and grow when knowledge becomes available. Knowledge and faith are not mutually exclusive. In America as I write this, we are slipping toward darkness. We must struggle against this, but not to conquer it, or eliminate it, because we cannot conquer it or eliminate it. What we can do and must do is strive for the balance that allows growth. The darkness of the seed in the soil and the light of growth into sunlight. No extreme can ever be good. Neither total darkness nor total light can lead to anything but lack and destruction. As my mother would have said, a place for everything and everything in its place. This is not static order, but balance. If we do not seek this balance, balance will still reinstate itself but it may do so at a greater price than we are willing to pay. Please join me in finding the light of sanity to balance the darkness of insanity that seems rampant in our nation and our world.
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