Friday, September 17, 2010

the god issue

so right about now Jews around where I live go to synagogues to begin Yom Kippur. it will be my first time when I don't at least partially participate. I should have already turned off the computer and what not.. But I dont' feel like it. And because for the past couple years I've been trying to figure out what I want and what I thought I should be doing. For too long I was forcing myself to fit a form not created for me. I made myself believe it was what I wanted. For years I was convincing myself it was exactly what I wanted, what I needed, it was the fulfilling of my nature. I had doubts... but my deep need of belonging and reconnecting with past and heritage took over. I thought that was the only way to heal thorn roots, to touch the past. I was ignoring or pretended not to hear things that made me cringe, when something inside me was protesting. I was justifying, excusing, quiting down... whatever was needed.

It took me years again to slowly learn what I believe, what is important to me. Scared all the time of what other would say, of the disappointment or hurt feelings. I was so much concerned with others' opinions of myself, that I was ready to continue walking over my own convictions, desires, dreams... I wonder sometimes if I ever got to this point if I didn't come out as lesbian. Because that was really a turning point, beginning of uncovering the layers of lies, masks, half-truths and "shoulds".
But once it started it couldn't be stopped. Arriving to the US gave me an opportunity to be born again, to create myself. I could get lost among crowds of people, I didn't feel as watched.
with time I realized that I didn't really feel any urge to follow the commandments. they lost their value, their purpose. For long time I was just trying to tell myself that I was just not as observant, that maybe I could call myself "conservative" even though it didn't "sit" with me right.
I finally admitted to myself that I don't really believe there is any God, and I don't think I ever did. I tried so hard to believe... I did all the motions, I repeated prayers, I was repeating things to others hoping I guess that if I said it enough times it would become real.
Now I just try to be honest with myself. I am still anxious, I feel kind of guilty that I am not fasting now and don't plan on going to a synagogue (I will fast most of the day tomorrow and will go for the very end though, for the tradition). I don't want to pretend and repeat words that I don't believe in. I need to do it at work sometimes, I don't want to do it in my private life.

I don't know for sure what is or isn't "out there". Hawking is saying that the universe could create itself out of nothing. I don't get it. But then, I don't understand how exactly the anti-anxiety drugs work, and I pop two each day. Just because I don't understand all about the beginnings of the universe or how it is growing, and what it means there is "nothing" where there is no universe, doesn't mean it's not real.
If some kind of superpower does exist though, I don't think it has any influence on the world now. some kind of demiurg who pushed the substance into motion. Or maybe I only hope that this power would have no way to influence the human doing? Because if it did, and the world looks the way it looks, than I don't want to believe in such god.

Sometimes I think the very ancient traditional animist or natural beliefs were/are much more real than all the complex modern religions. It was about respect for the nature, admitting one was a small speck of dust, that there were awesome and beautiful things out there. But at least they weren't murdering each other in the name of the spirits of fertility, didn't feel better than the others because of an access to a special spring, didn't slaughter children because they didn't accept the others' ideas of helpful hunting spirits.

I still love my tradition. it's emphasis on social justice, ethics, morality, learning, philosophy... I dislike a lot of it, all the products of narrow minded, homophobic and misogynist men perpetuating oppression in the name of their understanding of the will of god.
I love the clashes, I love the conflicts and the various shades. I don't want to lose that, but I have to find out my real self, and do what is real to me, honest and true.

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