I was born into Faith.
Christened, Communioned and Confirmed in Faith.
And then in every Thursday class I studied man’s interpretation of God.
And on every Sunday morning I heard a man’s interpretation of man’s interpretation of God.
And every day since I observed mankind’s interpretation of a man’s interpretation of a man’s interpretation.
But over centuries it seems these interpretations have become overgrown with the thorned vines of man’s shortcomings. Vines of hatred and judgment. Of corruption, greed and advantageous actions off of another’s vulnerability. Vines of contradictions and hypocrisies.
I heard the damning of those whose only sin is that they are from another culture, and their God is of another name, celebrated through their own traditions, songs and prayers. Damnation no matter the amount of kindness, compassion and beauty that that God has lead them to live. I observed the inconsistency of man to speak of an all-loving, All-Mighty God, but then believing He is only capable of loving in a one-dimensional manner.
I saw condemnation for those who have had the strength to embrace their true selves and share and spread true love with another. I observed the narrowness of man to believe that something as powerful as Love could be limited and ruled by something as temporary and trivial as the human gendered form.
But the most inconceivable of all, outside of the walls where I listened to the preachings of peace and sacredness, I learned of the histories of the massacres and genocides done in God’s name. I learned of the continuing turned blind eyes and white-collared protection for those who have stolen the innocence of children.
With all that I saw, I heard, I observed.. I lost faith.
I became resentful of those who used God’s name and love to justify their own personal hate. I became cynical of those who claimed they had faith even after all man had done. Intolerant of those who simply went through the motions of religion. I dismissed everyone as sheep to the wolves who stood upon altars. I found my tongue struggling to even say the word ‘God’ due to the heaviness of the connotation I held in my mind and heart.
Yet even as my faith was gone, I still craved the beauty that exists in Truth.
So I sought the facts.
Facts that could not be tainted by the ego of man. That remained true and unwavering even in the face of human’s greatest flaws. Proof of our connection through all things objective, methodically hypothesized, analyzed, studied and tested. Re-tested, mapped and written; calculated and quantified.
I wanted only tangible Truth.
And what I found was beautiful.
I found Truth in our connection with the Universe. Truth that the elements which make up our bodies are of the same origin as the elements which make up all of the stars in all of the galaxies.. I found nobility in the Truth that we are made of Stars.
I found Truth in our connection with one another. Truth that no matter our skin color or culture, all of our ancestors can be traced back to the same origin of man in Africa.. I found humanity in the Truth that we are all of the same human race. That we are all related.
I found Truth in our connection with all living creatures. The Truth in the rewinding of the evolutionary clock and DNA mapping to find that all humans, mammals, reptiles, and insects began as the same single-celled organism.. I found compassion in the Truth that even with the animals, we are all related.
I found Truth in our connection with nature. The Truth that the water which makes up this planet and hydrates the plants and trees is the same water that makes up our bodies and hydrates our cells so that we may live. The plants and trees that nourish the soil, insects and animals, and that fill the air are the plants and trees that nourish our bodies, provide medicine, and fill our lungs so that we may live fully. The Truth that when we cease to live, we then become the soil and it is our time to nourish nature.. I found humility in the Truth of the circle of Life.
I found the Tangible Truths.
But a curiosity began happening along the way of seeking facts.
When I began finding the Truth of our connection with nature, I began feeling the connection in our Truth.
When I began acknowledging the Truth of our connection with the animals, I began feeling the connection in our Truth.
When I began knowing the Truth of our connection with each other, I began feeling the connection in our Truth.
When I finally began understanding the Truth of our connection with the Universe, I began feeling the connection in our Truth.
It is a feeling that I cannot quantify or calculate. I cannot measure or tangibly hold, but I know it’s existence is real. Just as I know love, gratitude, nobility and humility, compassion and humanity are real.
It is a feeling that gives this life purpose.
I had seeked the facts, and what I found was my Faith.
I realize now I had not so much lost faith in God Himself, but I had lost all faith in man’s ability to interpret Him.
And I am grateful for that loss of belief and faith in another’s interpretation…as it has then allowed me to search and discover my own.
I can now say that I believe again in the teachings of the Christian God. As well as now I believe in teachings of Allah, Jah, Buddha, Krishna and Brahma; Great Spirit, The Creator, The Universe. I believe in the teachings of Science. In math, chemistry, biology, cosmology, physics, psychology. I believe in the harmony of nature; in the life, healing and medicines this Earth provides. Despite our flaws, I still believe in the goodness of people. I have faith in humanity and our ability to treat nature, animals, and one another with love.
I believe in all forms of Truth. Because in Truth, you always find connection. And in connection, Love.