What a great christmas subject!
My sort non-religion is complicated, but more and more simple really all the time as I peel away layers of what I was taught as a child (what was stuffed down my throat) and decide on a more terrestrial level what values are good for me.
I was raised immersed in the world of born-again christians. I was very active in my church as a child, filled with the holy ghost, and had many very emotional experiences related to god, but then again, god was the fabric of my family's connection and love. I respect that, and often wonder what it all means.
As I got to be an adolescent, and have a look at the world a little, I felt the pain of judgment from my church, and realized some of the things I was asked to do- like protest at abortion clinics- was hateful and wrong.
Partly as a result of my ultra-sheltered and myopic upbringing, I went absolutely wild around 15.
These days I am finally comfortable being around my christian family without misrepresenting myself in order not to be judged, and I have spoken to the family members that hurt me as a child with their intolerance and close-minded fantasy world about how they made me feel, and have forgiven them.(for the most part)
I have leveled out from goody two-shoes to hedonist to relatively self-possessed and peaceful woman.
My thoughts on a higher power- I don't have a need to know the name of god. Something I did take with me from my childhood was the feeling of having an absolutely personal relationship with a higher power, which I tend to think of more as a collective unconscious. I have lived long enough to usually be able to tell what is harmful and what is beautiful for me.
I express this through the experiences I take risks to have, my love for others, my art, and my commitment to growth. There are times when I am fully in the presence of this force, in the north woods, at my fireplace with friends, in my studio, in the ocean.
I try to stay in tune with that and drink up that feeling of connection with the divine whenever I can.
"Rocks will open and make a way for the lover."
~Hazrat Inayat Khan
I love Catfish and Charlie.