I have believed in a God of some sort most of my life. That is just me and that is the way I was brought up. I have tried to respect that part of my family’s history. I rarely go to church, because I prefer to think that this world is sacred. Every time, I step on green grass I try to think that that is some kind of miracle. Life itself and the very act of being is some great unfathomable mystery. We can try to answer questions like why are we here and why is there something rather than nothing scientifically. We can do that but I am not sure that there is an explanation for why it has to be me. Why am I here? And I don’t know. I just am, I guess.
In many ways, I am a kind of agnostic, but one who prefers to pray in all sorts of different ways. It just makes my lonely life more bearable I guess.
When I was much younger, I went to this Pentecostal church for about 3 years. At first, it was enlightening. That was where I began to read the gospels for the first time and one thing that struck me was that if there was someone like that in my life it would be so much easier. I felt a lot like Zacheus, I guess, or Mary Magdalene. Some people could claim that it was growing up in a Protestant family that made me feel like that, and I think that’s sometimes true. People live religion badly sometimes as they sometimes live life badly.
One of my favourite writers is a Buddhist teacher called Jack Kornfield. For many years now, I have owned a set of his teaching instructions. In one of his early talks he tells the following story. A man sits atop a mountain, a guru, and the people flock to him everyday to hear his wisdom on life. They go back down the mountain and take his wisdom back to their families and villages. One day, a woman comes to him from afar, a pilgrim from America, and he says to her, Woman, what have you to say to me. And she says, Felix, I was just wondering when you will be coming home.
Which to me just goes to show that we all get it a little bit wrong sometimes. Who knows? Maybe I have this teaching wrong myself, but I don’t believe so. I am very often tempted in my own life to become that man sitting atop the mountain. Sometimes I just wish I could fly far, far away from the messiness and the cacophony of modern life. It would be so much easier and simpler than what I think I have to do, which is to prepare a place at the table in this far off land of Australia for my wife so she can come over from Japan.
Anyway, back when I was going to the Pentecostal church, which I quickly became disillusioned with, someone gave me a message in a bottle that said the fear of god is the beginning of wisdom. At the time, I wished for a very different message, on that is readily understood. I have been trying to interpret it ever since. The best I can come up with is the wonder of life is the beginning of wisdom, and that is something I would like to reflect upon in my writings.
But, for me, I stick with the god-word, regardless of whether or not it makes any sense to anyone else. So this is an expansion of the voice I need to hear…
god doesn’t just like me, he loves me because he is love, to me anyway. whenever I see love I say god made that, because god is that. it is through understanding love that I can know god. I know love through my dog, Seraph, and my wife Satoko, and my imperfect parental units and my best friend, Mike, who listens to me when I need to find an ear. So this is my story. It was going to be called Linked In: Taking Concrete Steps to try to change oneself and one’s world. Then it was going to be called Halfway Home. Now, I might as well call it Being Love, because I want to write a personal story about my own unique pilgrimage, and bring it back home to some place where I learn a little bit about what it means to love. It’s just an idea…
Having said that, I notice that there are a lot of books already on this topic. Oh well, I guess, I will write for an audience of One, for myself, in the hope that I can learn a thing or two as well.