Why Doesn't God Stop Injustice?
I believe in God, because if I am able to suppress my own internal noise sufficiently, I feel I can contact God. Is this really true? Who knows? I think it is, but I can't prove it.
I feel that part of the problem of God's existence is that we have a fundamental problem understanding God. To begin with, God is eternal. Therefore, time is meaningless to God. God will never run out of time. God never has to worry about 'when.' God never wastes time. God is never early, late, or on time. God is neither old nor young. God just is.
We are the opposite of this. From our first moments we are impatient: impatient for attention from our mommy, impatient to get fed, impatient to see the next new bizarre thing in this crazy world we are thrust into. Inside us our heart keeps time in a steady rhythm. Outside, the days pass and the seasons change. We see ourselves grow, and then grow old, and we know we will die. Sometimes we get sick and if we're lucky, over time, we heal. Urgency colors our lives throughout, to find a mate, to find food and shelter and basic needs, to find love, to find purpose. Sometimes we don't know what we are urgently looking for, and restlessness drives us with the feeling that we are wasting our time, because we know we only have so much time.
Try to imagine having unlimited time, with no need to sleep or eat. You remember everything, forever. You remember the first particle of matter, the first minute spark of energy. You invented them. You had no beginning, so you have no memory of being small or growing; you do not age, so you are always exactly the same. What meaning would a day have for you, a period of time delineated by celestial bodies you put into place? The planets and stars whirl about you like a mobile above a baby's crib. Things start and stop, begin and end, but you do not. You simply always are.
You may think you can imagine what this is like, but I respectfully submit that this concept is just too alien to being human for humans to understand.
Be that as it may, one way or another you create life on Earth. You create a billion germs, a million insects, several thousand reptiles, fish, birds, mammals, and finally humans. Perhaps you are intrigued by the idea of an animal with an opinion. Perhaps you want company, something to break up the monotony of eternity. For whatever reason you imbue this particular animal with the ability to reason. Perhaps you interact with these animals directly, reasoning with them.
More likely, our reasoning to God is as amoeba reasoning is to us. Think about it. God knows everything. If you knew everything, why would you possibly want to communicate with someone who knows almost nothing? Does that make sense?
Enter love. A lot of people say that God is love. I can relate to this, because on those occasions when I feel I have successfully contacted God, I feel a warmth and, if I may say it, love or even a kind of affection coming from the other side. I think that God is probably a lot more complicated than love. I also think that God's love is probably as incomprehensible to us as God is. Nevertheless, I do feel a warm and positive feeling coming from what I believe is God.
I also believe that God is the source of all things. I believe God is personally involved in the workings of the universe, from the most grandiose to the most mundane. If you squeeze anything hard enough, speaking metaphorically, I believe God will come out of it. God is the very stuff of our universe, flowing universally through everyone and everything.
So, then, why disease? Why rape? Why child molestation? Why genocide? Why torture? Why natural disaster? Why children clawed and bitten to death by wild animals, or starved to death, or dead of thirst?
When I look at the universe, I see opposites. I see up, down, in, out, bad, good, light, dark, big, small, something, nothing, you name it, but every last thing seems to have its opposite. In addition to opposites, I see a lot of incremental difference. We have things that are on their way out or in, not too bad, not very good, off white, gray, kind of big, somewhat small, things that are kind of there but not really, and things that seem to not be there but actually are. The variety boggles the mind. Why all this variety?
Without down, there could be no up. Without darkness, there would be no light. Something is big only in relation to something which is not as big. This principle is not universally applicable. For example, if there were no hate, I think there would still be love. But I think without hatred love would not be quite the same. And between hatred and love there are almost infinite increments of like and dislike as well. Also there are different kinds of love and hate. One does not love one's spouse in the same way one might love, for example, chocolate. One does not hate one's enemy in the same way one might hate, for example, liver and onions.
One might suspect that God set up the universe in such a way that when a thing was created its opposite would also be created, since that's the way it seems to be. Or perhaps that was the first surprise. God created light and - surprise! - there was also darkness. Maybe God liked surprise so much that God created the universe in such a way as to be infinitely surprising. Trying to see things from God's point of view - timeless, eternal, always the same - I might really like the idea of surprise a lot. As humans we like our routines, but we like our surprises, too. Maybe that's the "made in God's image" part at work.
I believe God created us to introduce uncertainty, fear, love, desire, pain, anger, hatred, sickness, joy, health, beginning, ending and all our other experiences to God's own experience, which otherwise would be always the same. God gives us the gift of life, and we give God the gift of our lives, that is, the gifts of surprise, drama, suspense, excitement, peace, love and care. God shares both our joy at the lovely morning and our pain on the torturer's table; our pride in achievement and our shame in cowardice; and our compassion in forgiveness as well as our hatred in revenge.
God gave us a universe of all things not for us merely to enjoy, but to experience to the fullest possible extent and with the widest range of emotions, for in doing so, God gives God the same gift.
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