I may not believe in the spiritual, but I believe in the Holy

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the godless side / the post-God side

(Written while listening to this song if you want to listen too and get a little more in my head space).

After working yesterday close to the coast, I drove 15 minutes up to the most beautiful place on earth (IMO), Ecola State Park on the Oregon Coast..

Without my children, without my husband, without my phone, I could disengage undistractedly as I stood on the edge of eternity.  The brilliant sun, the roaring ocean.  It was everything I pictured heaven would be.  I walked barefoot in the reflective sand, like on streets of gold.  I lost myself, the beauty completely overwhelmed me.  My attempts at mindfulness in paying attention to every sound, every sight, every smell, every feel, were so great I couldn’t contain it.  I started to transcend in my mind and felt like I had escaped time and reality.  I desperately wanted to fall to my knees and worship.  But, in realizing there was no authority god figure to which I could attribute this majesty, I started to weep — because that meant something even more incredible: this beauty started and ended with ME– “for” (for lack of a better word) ME to enjoy, not to coerce me to praise another.

There is no other word for me to describe my experience than

HOLY.

From my experience as a Christian, religion wasn’t just a church experience, an ascription to beliefs or dogma, or a psychological torture about my behavior and identity.  It was also incredibly moving.  I lost myself in worshipping what I thought was my creator for HOURS.  Those worship experiences were beaming with beauty and meaning and ended with feeling like I was high for several hours after.

I was taken “past the outer courts and into the holy of holies” where the presence of God resided.  I spent my most precious moments there, and I felt a very similar feeling of overwhelming beauty, ecstasy, as I did yesterday.

And here I am again…. overwhelmed with beauty, finding meaning in my life not by a god but within myself.  Transcending reality into a state of consciousness in which I am so filled with joy and love my eyes cry, my muscles weaken, and my emotions explode.  Nobody walking by would know, but I wish there was a way we could join consciousnesses for a moment so you could feel what I felt.

Maybe you can…?

And now I’m realizing…. I don’t need Ecola State Park to feel this way.  I need only be present, focused, paying attention to the beauty that exists around me in each moment.  Because I think the potential to be overwhelmed with love, gratitude, and connectedness exists in every circumstance and is dependent only upon our state of mind (over which we have control) rather than our righteousness.

 

 

The Author

I'm a closet atheist christian missionary. Paradigm shifts happen frequently for those who allow themselves to think critically about currently held beliefs and openly about new ones. I’ve developed the skill, or perhaps addiction, for change but the community around me is slow to catch up -- and would damn me if they knew where I stood.

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