My thoughts on experiencing deity are pretty straightforward: each person must find their own path to the divine, and the divine may present itself in myriad ways, including (and especially) very quiet, subtle ways. If a person believes in a god just because someone told them that this one book said so, or a group of mortal human beings told them that’s what god is, well, I must say I think that is dangerously naive. I now believe that each individual must experience deity for themselves, in whatever way it presents itself. And some may never experience it, or never know that they’ve experienced it, and that is fine. We each have our own path to walk in this lifetime, in any lifetime, in any age or time. It’s really no one else’s business what is going on spiritually with any one else, and I find the idea of proselytizing very….low. It cheapens a god. It sells it on the street corner like a pimp. We live in a world that has been built on sickening display of this, and where has forcible belief ever gotten anyone? Into war, destruction, deceit, death. I guess even that is an expression of deity, but an unfortunate one to build a world on. But hey, that’s just like, my opinion, man.
I never believed in a god growing up. I tried, I really did. But I just never, ever bought it. I never bought that these stories were literal facts. I always believed in The Mysteries, for how can you not? I’m sure we can all agree that life itself is a mysterious web of complex forces that we ever seek to explain. And that is why the one of the most poignant things that ever stuck with me in all of my theological readings is this: it was thought that GOD was an acronym for Generating Force, Organizing Force, Destructive Force. The Force’s of our universe, of nature. The Force is the only way deity has ever made sense to me. This world is PROOF of those forces. We, each of us, WITNESS these forces every single day. And mythologies are a very sacred way of expressing those forces in terms we, as humans, can understand. Mythologies help us to try to fathom unknowable forces, help us create order for something that is, seemingly, complete chaos. Moreover, it gives us a sense of power to relinquish the power of the uncontrollable into SOMEONE’S hands, giving everything a reason or plan, rather than into the hands of a nameless, chaotic force. For me, it’s just too confusing to try to personify these forces with human faces and stories. Hence why people end up taking things so literally. Our minds can be as limiting as they can be open wide if we choose (or are taught) to do so.
That said, I start to grasp some sense that deities may be actual consciousnesses. Whether they grow and form because we make that so, or whether they are independently ‘real’ is still what stymies me, and I’m confident that I’ll likely never know. I’m more certain these days that there is an evolution of the soul, and it travels now and always in unseen realms. How those realms work and what creatures or entities reside in those realms, I haven’t the foggiest idea of what I believe on that account. I have had no ‘journeys’ that have thus taken me there, so I make no claims about these places. But many people have seen (and indeed, travel frequently to) these realms, and the accounts of them are ded scary, beautiful, intriguing, and startlingly similar to each other. The accounts I have read about involve, specifically, The World Tree. It’s a fascinating concept, and one that I feel is such a good metaphor. And it IS a metaphor. The World Tree, from the way I understand it, exists both inside and outside of us. We can access it by going deep within our minds and souls. It’s not easy work for me to delve into my soul as there are still many things I’m hesitant to face. I have dark rage that lies there, unconscionable shame, trauma and scars I’m not excited to revisit. And from what I’ve done so far, you really NEED to be able to have the courage and strength to face these frightening aspects of yourself, for in these Other Realms, one must be prepared to face even more difficult challenges than simply the scary bullshit that lies within. And one thing always, always, always I consider: once your inner eyes are opened, they cannot be closed. I always say, “It’s like Japanese porn, once you see it, you cannot un-see it.” It can be a curse and a sure way to mental illness if you’re ill-prepared to deal with it. It should go without saying that a person has to be very cautious about their own motives, must face up to the limits of their own ego and leave it behind, and must, at all costs, avoid falling into the very-easy-trap of delusion.
So anyway, I’m no scholar on this stuff, and I’m not going to be one of those people who does an academic blog on this stuff. This is for my perspective and feelings on the matter only. There are some amazing blogs out there and I love to read them and ponder and find my own method of exploration. Life is a wild feckin’ ride, that’s all I know!