Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Waking on Water

Whether we are a religious fundamentalist, a strident materialist, someone who is a convinced theist or whoever, we all live our lives in a state of trust or, for more specifically, faith.

Each morning I get up (sometimes somewhat reluctantly...) I do not for one moment consider whether or not I will float to the ceiling when I step out of bed. I have not once in my life thought that there may be a possibility that the gravitational pull that keeps my feet on the ground will have changed so dramatically that I no longer find it is able to keep my from floating off in to the air. Not once have I considered that this might be a possibility.

This is down to faith.

Before I ever learned about gravity I have always found myself connected the ground. When I was little if I leaned out of my bed I would fall. When I jumped I came back down again. When I crawled as a baby I stayed on the floor. When I learnt to walk I never floated away. Indeed helium balloons amazed my because they seemed to do something that was entirely different to my own experience. How did they float? Why did the balloons at my party that we blew up not float? Superman was amazing because when he jumped he flew. Then at school we discovered what gravity was. But here is the thing, gravity as with so many other things in this world, exist of course, but their existence is a reality to us because of mental impressions, our consciousness and shared conceptual paradigms. In other words, our consciousness is what makes these things a reality to us and in doing so we have faith in the way the world is, often never even questioning the way things are.

Thursday, 19 June 2014

(Un)Certainty Maybe

We need to embrace uncertainty and doubt for it is here that a deep and fascinating relationship with God is birthed.

Certainty, whilst appealing and seemingly safe, can lead us into anxiety, fear and misguided trust.

Let me give an example to highlight this.

I am certain that the grass is green. Indeed, I am so sure that the grass is green that I am willing to put my very life on the line for this proposition.

However, when I walk outside to prove to you that the grass is green I am confronted with a garden full of brown grass because the sun has shone persistently upon my garden, I have not watered it, and so the grass is now brown.

So the grass is not green, it is brown.

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

I Am (Not)

We are a people of memory.

Indeed, the moment you spent in reading each word in this sentence has become a memory. You may go back and read the same words again, but that unique moment when you read those words is now a memory. Our entire lives are a memory, formed by every movement, encounter and moment.

Perhaps this is why God alone is called 'I AM'.

You are you for sure. You exist in the sense that others can be hear/see/smell/touch and encounter you in some way. You are a part of this material world, created from the dust of the earth, formed in your mothers womb, born into an uncertain world.

Yet can any of us ever say 'I am...', for to say 'I am' is to say that you exist wholly in the present, no longer determined by memory. Perhaps the best any of us can do is to say 'I was...' for the moments that define us will always be memories.