Friday, 4 February 2011

A stop-me-in-my-tracks moment


photograph by dan

I was idly reading through a new-to-me blog whilst eating breakfast this morning, Coleens Reflections, and realised that sadly Coleen has obviously quite recently lost her husband. Anyhoo, I was sort of skimming through Coleen's blog when one particular post literally stopped me in my tracks or to be more precise, sweetie~pies, it was the quote below which brought my wandering eyes to a shuddering halt:

What if our religion was each other.....
If our practice was our life.....
If prayer our words.....
What if the temple was the Earth.....
If forests were our place of worship.....
If ritual objects ~ the rivers, lakes, and ocean.....
What if meditation was our relationship.....
If the teacher was life.....
If wisdom was self-knowledge.....
If love was the center of our being.....

Ganga White

I have long since stopped believing in coincidences, my loves; I have come to the conclusion that we 'find' things ~ quotes, pictures, people ~ for a reason, to help us at certain points in our lives. I have found myself adrift at one of those need-help points and as is so often the case for me, it centres around religion/faith/spirituality and my seemingly never diminishing 'need' to try to fit my square self into the proverbial round hole! (This particular 'need' isn't only limited to matters of religion, I feel I should point out, it rather tends to encompass way too many aspects of my life!)

I have struggled to find a religious label which truly fits me. I have a firm belief in God, or perhaps it would be more accurate to say Creator, but so far have been unable to find any one particular route to Him which feels right. I feel comfortable referring to the Creator as Him but that doesn't actually mean that I think of Him as being solely male; to my mind, He is both male and female. I don't feel any need to try to figure out how this may work in practice, though ~ in my mind it is simply one of those things in life which 'just is' ;-) I look around me at the glories and wonders of nature and know deep in my soul that there is a Creator.

I have dallied with a few religious pathways, some pagan and some Christian, but nothing 'fits'. I have a very dear friend who has been telling me for what seems like years (well, let's face it, my loves, it has been years!) to stop trying to put labels on myself and simply go with what feels right to me. If this means taking something from here, something else from there ~ then just go with it. I find this an amazingly difficult approach to take; I used to think I was just too lazy to find my own way but more recently it has dawned on me that it isn't laziness. Like virtually everything I struggle with on my life's journey, it boils down to lack of self-belief/confidence in my own judgments. The point is, though, that just as I cannot tell another person how they should live their life, that same 'rule' applies to me ~ no one can possibly know what is the best way for me to live my life! After all it is my life I am living, not someone else's.

Which takes me back to the Ganga White quote above. This has struck a chord within me and given me something to.....meditate upon, I guess. He doesn't say "this is how it is" but rather he leaves it open-ended ~ 'what if'. If the teacher is life, then what is my life trying to teach me? I don't have any insights to share with you, my loves ~ not yet, anyway. After all, I am only just stepping out on this particular path in my journey of life.

I know that we are all on our own life journey, travelling along our own particular pathways. It simply isn't possible to be on the same path as another but that isn't to say that our journeys can't/don't run side-by-side or cross at times. Being human, to me, is about learning, growing, experiencing and each of us will live our lives in a unique fashion ~ simply because we are individuals and can never exactly walk in the shoes of another.

Of course, we can empathise with others or have a similar experience but each one of us is a one-off, a never-to-be-repeated edition, a one-of-a-kind ~ and how bloomin' marvellous is that, my loves!

2 comments:

Sharon said...

Hum... It seems strange to see my thoughts, written in someone else's words on your blog.

A few years ago, someone sent me a link, where you would answer questions about how you felt about this and that and it would tell you what religion you were. I don't remember what it said I was and I don't remember the link, but I realized that there are others out there that believe the way I do. I am one of a kind, but I do have company!

Good post!

Sharon said...

I believe I know the link you are referring to ~ not that I can remember what it is now either! And like you, I don't recall what religion my answers to the questions pointed me to ~ which must say something in itself ;-) Whatever it was, it certainly didn't feel right to me.

I just feel that it's time for me to stop trying to force myself into things that don't fit!

I'm glad to know that you are travelling your path in your way, too :-)