Those of you who are educated in the world of the Hitchhikers Guide will know the answer is 42, but what is the question? Well I can’t tell you what the question is but I can share with you a question a good friend asked me which has made me want to write this. He asked me what my current opinion of God (or the lack of a god, or the uncertainty thereof, whichever it is), but more specifically on how god’s been to you, personally. This is a pretty big question and one that I deserved some thought before answering. I would like to say that my answer contained is not definitive nor is it something that I say to provoke a reaction. When you deal with things of a religious nature I find the best conversations come when both parties can understand that you have different opinions and different beliefs and that’s okay, otherwise it just get’s into a slanging match and as fun as they can be I tend to stay away from them.
I like the HHGTG humorous nature about ‘God’, I have been re-reading the books recently (all 5) and am constantly amazed at Douglas’ style of writing which has had me physically laughing in places and makes me wonder if I will ever write as well as him? With self-doubt expressly thrown out the window let’s stay on track. Over the past month or so I have done so much that has involved nature. I am technically agnostic (I think) and every time I have seen something that has amazed me or been bathed in wondrous light or had one of those quiet and still moments to myself I have given thanks for it. Am I praising ‘God’? Well some people might say yes, for me the existence of an all seeing entity is a bit of a non-starter and yes with animals like the Platypus around you can see why people say that ‘God’ has a sense of humour. Rocks like Uluru are truly amazing and perfectly explainable via science (not to be confused with scientology) but how does seeing something like this make me feel?
Putting feelings into text is tricky at times, during moments when I have been swimming under waterfalls I have been amazed and thankful for such a chance and if I did not have the money to do this then I would never of had the chance to see this and be here so I can tell you that ‘God’ is NOT responsible for this trip; my hard work and bank account have a lot to do with that. What is super interesting (for me) about the question asked of me is asking me how I think ‘God’ has been to me personally. I remember very distinctly nearly eight years ago being very angry at ‘God’. I remember distinctly me calling it out for a fight, challenging it because my father died way too young and that made me specifically very angry. Religious people again will say it’s all part of ‘God’s’ great plan and if you had told me that at the time I would of impolitely told you where you can stick ‘God’s’ plan. When my Father died I was quite happy to find ‘God’ and kick him/her/it squarely in a place that would hurt for a really long time. I have mellowed a bit on this over the eight years that have passed, I cannot change what has happened in the past and there really is no point in staying angry for that long. I don’t think that ‘God’ has treated me badly. I’m not angry about how I am as a person at some deity, I don’t blame my depression on an unknown entity but I am thankful for the things I have seen and experienced. I am thankful for the friends that I have and the family that cares for me, but I don’t believe that any one deity can be responsible for all of that; which probably makes no sense. Who am I thankful to? The concept of Gaia (Mother Earth) is a more acceptable one to me. This planet is alive with all sorts of creatures and resources, I don’t believe that some motherly figure created the planet we live on but the concept that the planet is itself a ‘God’ is a bit more acceptable (but still full of nonsense). I have immersed, baptised myself if you like in the waters that I have seen and in those moments I have from time to time felt that I am indulging in something more than just a dip in a pool or sea.
I have felt fluffy, light, alive, awestruck and deeply moved (not in that order and probably not all at the same time). So does that answer the question? No? Yes? Somewhere in between? God knows…