I don’t have the greatest gift in writing. It is always a challenge to find the appropriate words, and piecing them together to deliver the message to closely match the meaning with the inspired thoughts which come to mind. It takes effort in second guessing readers’ minds whether the presented points could be understood with ease. And, I do have an incorrigible tendency in rambling on. So, it did not come as a surprise that my article on “Lord’s Prayer, a Gift of Deliverance” has prompted some readers to question my views. I guess the best way to put things in a clearer perspective is to quote a personal experience.
Born a Catholic who goes to church regularly in his youth couldn’t find the appeal in the weekly rituals. I just could not get pass as a “good” Christian like the others. I could not find the connection at least a spiritual one. The years in attending mass which takes me through the process of reciting prayers, singing hymns, kneeling, standing, sitting and receiving the communion are repeating disciplines only to serve as a constant reminder. The rule is simple enough, accept God with faith as told. I failed to relate to this, and the lack in sincerity kept me from a distance. All the years, I have not inculcated any long lasting and meaningful change. I have seen how feeble the mind is when it comes to the “crunch” in the worst of times, and faith is instantly shaken. All those years of drumming the disciplines into my head has its limits, and I realised admission to God from the mind is weak, and to know God I needed to connect with my soul which is driving my mind.
The mind conceptualises God, but the spirit conceives it. That is my stand. I needed that experience to understand that can bring more meaning. Notice the distinction. When the soul searches, God is everywhere but when the mind searches, we go to church. When the soul searches, I realised the concept of God dematerialises from my mind, and emphasis is placed more on the connection. With a spiritual connection, everything flows into its proper places and no longer necessary to impose the definition of God in mind. This means that I imagine less of God, although I use the term plenty of times for illustration purposes.
So, what do I do to “know thyself”? I steer myself carefully between extreme lines of thoughts. The more I do this, the more I feel comforted. My mind is more relaxed, not pressured or threatened by my environment. I discriminate less of my environment and it discriminate less of me. But, there is no guarantee that my days will flow uninterrupted. There are always distractions being a family man and all. I am bound to have “nudges” and occasional “jabs”. But one thing is clear, if I am subtle in my actions it is a “doing” which encourages the spirit, unlike actions stemmed from pride which sits naturally with the mind. It’s not a sign of weakness, but the opposite. The spirit instils courage in me. And, you do see things differently when you choose to have a relationship more with the soul than the mind.
Having said all that, Jesus was a great man, but even greater was his spirit. That is where I drew my conviction from to interpret the “Lord’s Prayer” the way I did. The words are meant to speak to your soul to relate to God. The prayer serves as a “bridge” which connects to Heaven. Which way would you prefer, to connect with God by engaging the mind in imagination, or evoking the spirit in a lasting experience?
From that stand point, it is suffice to say that the views given on the “Lord’s Prayer, a Gift of Deliverance” are not over stepping the boundaries of the Christian belief, nor a contradiction. It is complimentary I would imagine, and I feel somewhat deprived of that wisdom. I did not renounce my religion, there is no reason for that and I am free to attend masses whenever I felt like it.
Religion is a good base to start for the mind to build a spiritual foundation, and without being bias I would encourage anyone with a Christian faith to attend mass. Christianity, Islam, Buddhism are all respectable religious fellowships which centered their priority on one thing, peace by forgiving. I would research all their published materials if I could, but I would to have to change profession because that would take more than a life time to accomplish the task. Religion guides us to a point in our life’s journey, but what will remain is the walk we make our own.