You know how I was blah, blah, blah-ing the other day about feeling down and uninspired and lackadaisical? Well, sometimes it takes a total stranger knocking on the door to make you realize something.
This young Asian man came to the door the other day. He's on a Mission from his church in Singapore and was doing a religious survey. Normally I would tell him to go away, but this day I figured I'd talk to him. Maybe I felt I needed to voice something - maybe I thought I could open his eyes. Maybe I just needed to hear something - from him or higher up.
He asked me a few questions - asked if we went to church. I told him that I do sometimes attend church, but that my husband is more committed to it than I am. I told him that I believe in the teachings of Christ, but that the doctrine of most Christian churches requires that you believe that Christ was the literal son of God (he didn't agree with me, but check out the doctrine of your church and tell me if I'm wrong). I'm not there with that. I believe that Christ was the physical son of a man (most likely Joseph) and that he was no more the son of God than every last one of us. But he was wise. And he saw the human condition and our connection to God very clearly. I admire Christ, but am not always on the same page as Christians (although being a good person, as the Christian Churches tend to advocate, is always a goal of mine - if not always achieved). I also believe in the Buddha and his teachings. And many other wise and flawed human beings.
The Missionary also asked me if I had ever experienced God. And that was the particular question that got me to shake my head a bit. "Have you ever experienced God?". Well, of course I have. Since I believe that God is the life force in all of us that connects us to each other and all life, I experience God every day. You need not have a miraculous experience to feel God. But when he asked me that, I realized that I haven't been feeling that connection a whole lot lately. I don't know if I'm not allowing it, or if I'm in the waning phase of a cycle, or if I just haven't had enough time to think about it. I know that I need to find that feeling, though. And I know that I will when the time is right.
And he asked me what my religious influences have been. Well, if you only have one or two, I don't think you're doing it right. Every experience can be a spiritual influence if you allow it to be.
Socrates stated that "The unexamined life is not worth living". To me, the examination of my life, of my experiences, my emotions, my reactions to things and how I relate to other people - those are all spiritual influences. For me it's the analysis of how I react to the world and how the world reacts to me that allows me to learn spiritually.
As is what I observe in the world. The miracle of nature, the amazing-ness of my son, the intuition that I feel (when it's right), following my instincts - everything confirms to me that God exists and that there is a hell of a lot more to life and consciousness than we can perceive.
So thank you, young, innocent, Singaporean Missionary on my stoop. A little reminder to me that even though I'm not feeling it right now, there is so much spirituality all around me. Now ... to feel it!