We’re all on a Journey, but there is no PathPosted: January 12, 2014
You’re on it. I’m on it. We are all on it. And we all scream for ice cream. The journey of life – that walk/run/crawl through the days that make up our time on earth – is a trip each and every one of us will take. Few journeys go in a straight line and most of us encounter the valleys and challenges that make stories like Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, and Harry Potter touch us at a soul level.
Whether we are encountering a hero’s journey to make our dreams come true or just struggling to keep enough food in the fridge until payday, we are all trying to get somewhere. This archetype is so deeply ingrained in our communal and personal psyche we apply it to our spiritual nature and that’s when many make a mistake. We begin to believe we are on a path to God.
We are all mindful of those rigid, annoying folks who believe their “path to God” is the ONLY path to God. Just as frustrating to me are those folks who, in trying to be open minded, willfully insist “there are many paths to God.” While it is nice for people to affirm the faith ideas of others as valid and uplifting, it still offers a misdirected solution.
It doesn’t matter if your view of God is Jehovah – the Judeo-Christian God, the Buddha nature, the AA “Higher Power” or as Julia Cameron aptly describes it – the search for “Good-Orderly-Direction” the belief that your practice of faith, grace or ritual is taking you toward God could be holding you back from some of the very joy you seek.
I would like you to try, just for a moment, to think differently. If you are not completely satisfied – your path to God will be returned to you immediately. I won’t even make you wait the 30 day trial period. But for a second, try this out.
There is no path to God.
If you are willing to imagine that thought – I’ll throw in the rest for free.
There is no path to God because God is already with you.
When we project that there is a path leading to God, we place God somewhere we are not. We begin to think of God as “away” and we must do something – live according to the rules, pray every day, meditate to enlightenment, spin in a circle three times before sleeping – in order to be with God.
What we miss in all that working our way to God is the everyday, joyous awareness that God is living with us, praying with us, the breath of our meditation, the beat of our heart and beauty of each waking (and sleeping) moment. That’s something worth knowing. As a happy by-product, when you take yourself off the path to God and walk your life’s pathway with God it will free you from needing to judge other people’s journeys as well. You can just “be” and let them “be” too.
The things we do in faith – going to church, following a practice , praying, giving, forgiving, meditating, healing, loving – they all help us and our fellow travelers to experience and express the God who is with us. They are important and valuable. They are the essence of “Namaste” – the God in me honoring the God in you.
Make no mistake, life is still a journey and we are all on it. I don’t know about you – but instead of seeing my life as an errand to pick God up along the way – I feel a lot better knowing God is in the boat with me.