I believe in God – I just don’t share the same beliefs as organized religions.
For someone like me who is battling a medical challenge, the going can get really tough. Every time the needle pierces the skin, every time the cramps set in, every time I get poked and prodded. These little things add up.
Sometimes I wonder if I’d feel happier or more relieved if I belonged to a religious group. You know, the whole ‘someone to share your load’ thinking. Prayers can work miracles and maybe, just maybe, they can work on us too?
But then, it’s not as if I don’t believe in God, a presence great than we can ever imagine. I look up into the sky and ask for some help and guidance too. It’s just that I believe there is one God for everyone, that the God that you look up to is the same as his, and his, and hers, even if you profess to be of a different religion. The difference lies in how we interpret Him.
Because ultimately, don’t all religions preach the same set of values? We need to be kind, to do no evil, to be tolerant, to have compassion, to love etc.
Maybe I should call myself a humanitarian instead.
I picked up a book one day at Books Kinokuniya. It was on sale and I hadn’t bought a book in a while. But the title drew my attention at a time when I needed a little positivity and hope in my life: it was the Friday before my surgery.
It was Mitch Albom’s Have A Little Faith.
I had never read his breakthrough book Tuesdays With Morrie but I did read his other work Five People You Meet in Heaven. I enjoyed it tremendously but not enough for me to want to buy his other books.
This non-fiction book, however, did fulfill its promise and I did end up with a little more faith than before. The story tells the tales of two clergymen with different faiths and how they inspire Albom to, well, have more faith. Inevitably, there is death, and fear, and loss. But at the same time, there’s also hope, and belief, and love and kindness.
What moved me were some of the thoughts shared by the rabbi as he and Albom connected over the promise of an eulogy. He too believed in the fact that there is One God, that the many religions that exist in the world is due to the many debates and discussions and interpretations that men have. That the differences are meant to create a harmony, even though we are all singing the same tune. (Read the excerpt here)
The road goes on and on and there is no end in sight. And there are times when I fall off the wagon and get really mad or sad. And while I can certainly pick myself up and trudge on (husband does a pretty good job of that too), I do feel a quiet sense of relief when I gaze up into the blue sky and think, tell me, what should I do now?
Maybe it’s psychological, maybe it’s delusional, but sometimes I do think that I get heard.
Reading the book somehow reminded me of this classic song by Joan Osborne.