So let’s talk about God.
I just read a quote from Pope Benedict XVI, the new pope. Upon a recent visit to the Nazi death camps of Auschwitz, he commented:
“In a place like this, words fail. In the end there can only be dread silence — a silence which is itself a heartfelt cry to God: Why Lord, did you remain silent? How could you tolerate all of this?”
I can understand the pope’s feelings of reverence and sadness in a place where such atrocities took place.
I just read that in a recent poll that the majority of the population believes in God. You can count me among them. But I need to qualify my membership (I just gotta be considered special, dontchaknow).
As the good pope reflects in his speech, he believes that God is a person, or person-like. I assume this comes from the belief in Jesus being a deity (or is he the son of the deity? Or are they both God? And what about that Holy Spirit? All those years of church school and I still haven’t figured all that out).
Back to the pope. In his words, the Bible, and most Christian teachings, God is personified, usually in the form of Jesus or Jesus’ dad. Some guy with a white beard and cool sandals. He’s thought to be in control, sitting in the heavens and judging events so as to reward us when we are good and to smite us when we are bad.
For the record, that’s not the God I believe in at all. I do not believe that God is person-like, with all the frailties of being human. At the same time, I believe that each one of us is made up of the same stuff as God. At first glance, that may seem contradictory, but it’s not to me.
When I speak of God, I do not refer to Jesus. Or Buddha. Or Krishna. Or Muhammad. Or any of the prophets from history. I am referring to the divine energy that those teachers were connected to — the source of all creation.
An easier way to think of it is to simply see the entire world of consisting of energy. When you break everything in the universe down to its smallest building block, everything is made up of the same stuff — energy. The differences we perceive in matter reflect different patterns of energy.
Quantum physics aside, we beings of energy are made up of the same stuff as everything else in the universe (energy) and all part/reflections of the Universal Source of energy. Again, that’s what I would call God.
When I read the pope’s words, I am struck at how the leader of over a billion Christians worldwide seemed flabbergasted at how God (the personified God, that is), could let such horrible things happen. Of course there’s no way for any of us to know, me included.
But what if God wasn’t human in the sense of having feelings like suffering, joy, or vengence? What if God was just as Energetic Force that reflected back to us our thoughts, feelings, and energy?
At the very least, this would put the onus of responsibility as to why things like Hitler’s reign took place on humankind, rather than laying part of the blame on God for why he “tolerated it.”
Seems to me that either the the pope (who is theoretically supposed to be infallible and have direct communication with God) should either have a pretty dang good explanation from God, or that just maybe, just maybe, God had nothing to do with it.