I was getting a lift home from rehearsal when my friend started asking about my beliefs. He, himself is an atheist, but he showed a genuine curiosity in what I believed to be going on in the universe.
I have touched on this subject before, here.
Obviously, I did not mention or bring up any of that. That would have been way too much!
Instead, I launched into a monologue of my latest hypothesis of the gods I believe in and what they are. It went something like this:
If we go with the idea that all there is through the universe is the Life Force. And by that I mean the spark of life that is within you, is connected to the Life Force in all things: it is connected to the Life Force in others, in animals, the sea, plants, the wind, the rain, the Sun. This Life Force permeates everything, it’s why some people can feel or even see the auras of other people and things. It is the thing where our Life Force goes to when we die and is the reason why some people can claim to speak with the dead as their spark joins the pool, allowing echoes to be heard and remembered.
You get the idea, right?
So, what if….. What if this Life Force had a sentience to it? And it communicated with us, and these communications became manifest into beings our ancestors interpreted and called gods, or spirits even?
In effect, the gods are the avatar of the Life Force.
Of course, when talking about all this to someone who had already stated he was an atheist, he told me “The problem with anyone who believes in something, is that you’ll never convince me it is real.”
And he’s right. I can’t convince anyone of what I experience or believe to be true. Our experience is entirely subjective. My beliefs are a mish-mash of what I have learned, experienced, encountered and found not to be true. Yes, I resonate with the gods of a people whose culture has now gone. I have had conversations in visualisation meditations with beings who claim to be these ‘gods’. Are they in fact distant ancestors? a manifestation of the Life Force that uses images and names I would understand? A projection of my inner voice that I unconsciously make into a character (a bit like what happens when we dream, except this time I am more lucid)?
What would make such encounters more interesting, is for one of these to appear and give you their name as one you don’t recognise. Or better yet, a familiar deity comes forward and disagrees with you. Saying why something won’t work or how something else is a bad idea. Or even how some idea about them is wrong: although be sure to write notes upon coming to and do some research to back that one up!
Question: How come all gods are not the same?
Conjecture: Because they are relevant to the people they belong to.
I know these things, these conversations (revelations of insight?) , these beings are real in my perspective. It’s like when I see balls of light at the Grove Hearth: I physically see them with my own two eyes, even point out when they are there, but no one else does. Except for one other. Do I know what those balls of light are? No. Can I show a team of scientists one of our ceremonies in the Grove and point out when the balls of light arrive? No, they don’t appear every time.
And so it is with gods, spirits, entities et al I can’t convince other people these things exist just because I encountered something.
And as I was explaining the Life Force hypothesis to my friend, I actually realised how ridiculous this sounds to someone who doesn’t believe. You’ve got to admit, it does sound crazy. Any of it, all of it! And people go to war over this? People murder each other because they disagree?
Thankfully there was no war in my friend’s car, we ended the chat on pleasant terms and I finished it by saying:
“You’re right, I can’t convince you of what I believe. My beliefs are my own. But if I was to say if you were to believe in something, believe in you.”