Friday, September 21, 2012

Is God a Crutch for the Neurotic?

Having spent many years as a bible-believing, born-again Christian, I know first-hand what I speak of when criticizing the Faith. While not on a crusade to attack anyone’s beliefs, there are instances when certain elements of Christianity stand out as being contrary to the well being of humanity. I comment on issues where I feel that Christian beliefs act as a hindrance to true spirituality and general good common sense.

I recently visited with a friend who had been “brothers in the faith” with me at one time. Though his beliefs had moderated somewhat over the years, he still clings tenaciously to a theistic model of an all-powerful God, creator and sovereign of the universe.

My friend had been suffering through a dark period of anxiety and depression that was severe enough to place him on disability. Of course he has my deepest sympathies and support as a friend, and fortunately his condition has improved somewhat of late.

During this particular visit, my friend made a comment that really caused me to think. He questioned why God had ordained of him to traverse through this difficult and painful path, and he disclosed that he often felt angry at God for this.

Of course, in my previous life as a Christian (and confessed neurotic), I believed that God was in control of everything. Although my particular flavor of theology allowed for limited freewill, I was aware of ongoing debate as to whether freewill was an illusion embedded within the larger context of God’s sovereign will. At that point in my life, my friend’s comment would have made sense, and I often wondered why good people have to suffer if God is in control. I tried blaming suffering on “The Devil” but then that would detract from God’s sovereignty. That particular paradox eventually influenced my exodus from the Christian worldview.

Now I have come to the understanding that the theistic, personal God of religion is fully contrived and projected by humans. This explains why there are so many conflicting beliefs about what God supposedly thinks and commands of His followers. God is painted as humans wish to portray Him, complete with all the emotions and personality foibles that humans suffer from.

My path has brought me to accept the Hermetic view that a single, unitary consciousness pervades all that is. I perceive true spirituality as that which honors the soul as an indivisible piece of the whole. The answers to all of life’s questions can be found by seeking to understand the soul’s purpose for incarnating as flesh.

So what disturbs me to hear my friend express anger at God for his situation? Obviously I don’t believe that God will be offended, so what is it? In essence, blaming God is to place responsibility for your situation upon something that you yourself have created. If the God you have created and projected is the supposed cause of your problems, then how is that not some kind of circular reasoning? People generally are more successful at tackling problems when they feel empowered. How can it help to give your power away?

I asked my friend, “What if you were to discover that the God you worship was created from within your own mind? Who would you be angry at then?”

Although there must be many positive and admirable aspects within Christianity, I continually notice that Christians seem quick to place responsibility onto God whenever difficult issues arise. To the extent that they do this, they fail to take responsibility for themselves. The problem with this is that we are powerful souls, but pretend that we have no power. We project all of our power onto this God essence, and then perhaps draw some of it back when we pray, supplicate and ask for help. Religious icons, such as Jesus, Virgin Mary and various patron saints get charged by the collective soul-energy of the faithful, and they become proven as reliable sources of help when in need. It’s really no wonder how that works.

My entreaty is thus: Why take the roundabout path of shifting responsibility and vesting your power onto the contrived God? Why not stand as the powerful soul that you are, and take responsibility for your own personal reality? Somewhere between your two ears lies the source of all that you experience and perceive in this physical existence. Within there can be found the keys to your successes and failures, the source of both joy and pain.

Your soul came here with specific purpose, and suffering generally results from either resisting that purpose, or failing to understand it. Although there can be a number of underlying root causes for neurotic behavior, one common characteristic is avoidance of responsibility and a system of defensive mechanisms to deal with pain and suffering. The defenses may vary, but it’s my contention that belief in a theistic God can be one more crutch in the defensive arsenal.

This is not to minimize anyone's problems or to suggest that answers should come easy. Life's journey is an ongoing process for all of us. Pain and suffering is a reality for many. I've simply found that it helps to understand the root causes, and discovering my soul's agenda has been a key part of that in my own journey.

It's all about the soul. To the extent that Christianity and other religions inhibit the true expression of who we are as souls, I oppose it. Where dogma takes precedence over open-minded inquiry, spirituality suffers. For those who feel well-served by their religion, so be it, but for those who suffer and haven’t found effective solutions, I suggest exploring the unknown country of the soul. Become aware of who you really are.

P.S. For those interested in pursuing Hermetic concept of God, I highly recommend The God Theory by Bernard Haisch.

No comments:

Post a Comment