In graduate school my synthesis work involved Interreligous Dialogue. This developed in me a deep respect for the world’s major religious traditions. I appreciate the way my view expands when learning about how others comprehend the Divine. Along the way I’ve also encountered folks near and dear to me who have concluded that there is no God. This too is a belief system and I can understand how one might arrive there. I aim to not judge what is not my experience. There is no need to be threatened by our capacity to think differently from one another.
The above in mind, I recently came across a song I co-wrote with a friend a long time ago. The chorus says:
What reaches me
Is not what has been
But what could be
And at the end of all,
When your ashes fall,
Who will you say thank you to?
At the time of writing it I was wondering where one goes with the gratitude that wells up in us at times — for the many gifts of life including life itself — if not to something bigger than ourselves. Sure, I express my thanks countless times to others who are responsible for certain good deeds. Yet there is another kind of gratefulness that does not correspond to anyone’s direct involvement. It’s a gratefulness that I think exceeds what any of us can hold. For me, it’s so compelling that I cannot help but aim it toward a Source beyond me. That Source could be considered Love itself, the Cosmic Energy that creates and sustains life, the Holy Mystery that fosters our capacity for meaning and purpose.
Some call it God or the Great Spirit or Higher Power or Adonai or Lord or Allah or Universal Christ or Brahman or Waheguru or many other names. Yet on one level these terms are simply vocabulary. In actuality what we are talking about here is beyond words.
In the end, for me, it is that ineffable Entity of Love, larger than the sum of its parts, to whom I direct the BIG thank you. How about you?
May you be inspired!