25. In the Eye of the Storm, Where Is God?

This morning’s First Waking Thought:
I am still seeking the ineffable God.

It’s hard to let go of the belief in separation, and today I realized why it’s still so hard for me.

Jesus, and many others since, said “God is within.” New Thought faiths reveal that “God is all there is.” But if I accept and believe that I am, myself, an embodiment and Expression of God, “one with all that is,” then in a way, there is no more God to turn to. No God to thank, no God to look up to. And if there is only an in-here God and no more out-there God, there is no more help. We’re on our own in the cosmos. That might be the loneliest thing that can possibly be experienced. For me, and for a whole lot of human beings I think, “oneness with God” almost feels like an abandonment.

Yesterday at twilight I prayed. It was not my usual silent or softly-spoken prayer. It was one of those out-loud-prayers where you rant at the evening sky like a lunatic. At one point I broke down in a flood of tears when I said out loud to God,
“It’s just so big.” (The work, the book, my soul’s assignment.) “it’s so much bigger than I am. You’ve GOT TO help me do it! You’ve got to help me!”

The skies didn’t open up, and no bush caught on fire, there was no sudden shift in consciousness, no revelation, and no epiphany, only the absolute silence. It’s hard these days not to believe that God is mad at me.

But I know that this image of a rewarding-and-punishing, loving-and-abandoning God is not real. It’s something we human beings made up, one of many versions we created, trying to help ourselves understand. These versions of God were, and are, as real as we make them, and what we believe, we receive. The constant loving and sheltering God of my childhood still exists, but only if I can become a child again and live life with a child’s trust, and I can’t now. I know too much, I’ve seen what life can do. I have too much work to do, and I fear the ever-faster passing of time.

In the empty calm at the end of that prayer, I remembered the first time I did this, or rather, it happened. It was twilight that time too. Someone had told me many years earlier, that he believed twilight was the time when the mind was at its thinnest and weakest point, and that there was a danger of slipping through to the other side, and maybe not being able to get back. That worried me, but I was very young and I soon forgot about it.

Then when my first out-loud-prayer happened, it was so spontaneous and unexpected that I had drifted into it without realizing. Then suddenly I heard myself talking to Something, all by myself in an empty room, and I was startled and scared. I stopped, and listened to the silence, and I wondered fearfully whether I had lost my mind.

I hadn’t, but somethjing had happened. Something had broken through to a different level. I was sobered by the experience, and I would be again, four years later by the first “message” I received from “somewhere else,” which I eventually came to call the Inner Counselor. Just before I came to California and my whole life changed, the inner voice had said:
“Take faith in yourself, for God has had faith in you, and the gift is already given.” I didn’t understand it then, and still don’t entirely understand, but I knew then and I know now, that it was real, and it was a personal gift to me. In my 40 years since then, I have learned that it was no big deal. Everyone has this. Most of us just don’t listen.

Life rolls on. The world is crashing around us now, violence, death and disasters in great numbers never before seen in history. And yet we hardly notice, because we are so bedazzled by our amazing techno-toys, devices that take us to instant fantasy worlds. Mass killing has become normal to our children now, because they practice video murder-games several hours every day and see hours of  violence on TV every night. The Nightly News is not much different from their video-games. Most kids start practicing the skills of cold-blooded murder at age 5.

Then there is the relentless loud clamor of  flashy advertising, everything exploding in flames just to sell cosmetics, obscenely rich googd-looking people driving insanely dangerously just to sell cars, and the increasingly frequent explosions of rage, hate, and assault among perfect stragers in fast-food restaurants and drive-by shootings on the “Breaking News.” All of these are so much louder than the still small voice within. It’s more important right now than ever before in history, to find a small space of solitude for yourself, turn off the tempting illusions and fantasies, and listen to what is true, in you.

Most of us are dangerously brainwashed and hypnotized without realzing, unable or unwilling to wake up and see reality, because reality has become technologically counterfeited in so many beguiling and entertaining ways that massive numbers of humanity have slipped through the thin membrane of sanity to the other side, without even knowing it.

You have the choice, and you have the power at any time, to wake up. To turn off the noise, and come back to your own voice of truth. It can give you back your life.

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