On Facebook I took the find out what sixties rock star you are and got Janis Joplin. Anyhoo, thinking of her and this line from one of her songs got me thinking about what exactly are my spiritual convictions. I spent my life trying to replicate a spiritual experience I achieved as a result of microphone feedback. My first spiritual experience was when I was six years old and I was in church and heard microphone do that weeeewah high pitched thing and believing it was the momment when god would enter the church from the spirit world. I experienced total belief in god for those few momments. I whispered my profound knowledge to Janet this girl with allergies and always had a wad of kleenix in her hand sitting next to me.
She sighed and matter of factly explained that what I was hearing was microphone feedback because the church had a very old PA system. Since the priest was sick with lung cancer and you could barely hear him they had turned it all the way up. She even went as far to mimic the deathly ill priest's forced whisper and said see, that is why they microphone is turned up like that. The poor priest died shortly after of his lung cancer and I truely mourned his passing. That momment was magical though. He was whispering with all his might and we all knew that his time on earth was limited he had lost part of his lung and was very sick and the noise was deafening and I saw a spiritual world for one momment that I have always wished I could achieve again. Even if it was likely just microphone white noise.
I even remember the outfit I wore to his funeral as I tried to dress my best as I felt he had a big part in my momment of believing in god without doubt at least for a few fleeting microphone screeches. I would go as far as to say I loved him. The outfit I wore was a bodysuit with small sail boats on it in orange and brown and a brown skirt and brown tights with brown two toned shoes. I got help with my hair putting it in a bun and wore a white sweater. I was never as sure as my seat mate that it was only microphone feedback and could have sworn I had experienced something different.
My background didn't help matters about my blasé attitude during the ensuing years. My parents where rebelling and didn't really attend church. My grandmother was Native American and I spent a lot of time with her and she had a wellspring of beliefs and superstitions I learned to follow. Also being raised on an Indian Reservation for the most part until I was 14 I always felt a certain duality about spirituality, still do. Also interfering was I had a big imagination bordering on living in a dreamland most of the time. I had five or six fantasies I entertained and comforted myself with. One was I had six beautiful horses each with a colored sadle and a stable and small house and I would have parties on Saturday afternoon and we all would take a horse and go on picnics. Kinda Pippi Longstockingish but with cooler clothes and fashionable accessories.
As I grew older I accepted the beliefs I was taught and kind of hoped I would get whapped by some sort of religious conversion at some point. I remember living in the dormitories and there were these three or four born again christian girls and they seemed to be so happy and group oriented. I just never got grabbed by that feeling of wanting to do that. They were nice thats all. I always had a deep reverence and appreciation for religious art and especially Mary. I did a lot of jewelery with Hallmark cards cutouts of religious faces placed in rings with clear hypoxy over them. I would guess I made and sold over jeese I dunno over one year about 500 of these rings I sold to a tourist shop downtown and they sold at a brisk clip. Then when I was married my former spouse was Presbyterian and we didn't really go to church. To be honest we went once or twice and I felt really uncomfortable there.
I was into reading a morning meditation from the Lao Tzu during those years and still do from time to time. Although I am not a budhist I feel peaceful after reading it. Then after my divorce I wanted to become more serious about spirituality and started going to a budhist center for about a year. There is some quality in Budhism that is like Native American beliefs. I can't explain it. I eventually left because the unbeknowest to me the type of Budist center I was attending was really strict and I got scared off. Although I have since learned there are much more relaxed kinds that are not so strict. I was given a kohan by a spiritual leader at one point and still think of it from time to time. You are theoretically not sopposed to tell anyone your kohan but I will anyway.
It is "where is god", it is sopposed to be my lifes' question. In a way it is rather beautiful. In another it is rather annoying, like couldn't I have gotten a freakin kohan that was a tad easier to answer? And what about out bretheren atheists or multi etc. other religious practises do I need to understand all these also to find god? I for one believe there is a god although I would like to think that this entity is merciful and just I know being the pragmatist that I am that is not the case. There are a lot of dangerous people in the world. And to find meaning after terrible things happen to me is the foundation of spirituality. It works like a hidden resource. In some strange way this was also a meaningful occurance.
That my general philospophy is to try and live in forgiveness which actually seems to get a lot easier now that I have hit middle age. I think that would have been impossible for me in my twenties to think that way and it is easy in my forties. Now that I have a child I would like him to have some religious instruction as a reference. So, my life definately does seem to follow a better course when I am doing the right things and for what it's worth if I am in some kind of spiritual contact I seem to do better. A great book I read during a dark time in my life was called "Mans Search for Meaning" written by Victor Frankl a survivor of a concentration camp. This book I would often recommend to people who seemed to have various forms of inner disturbance. I have friends who are scientists and would find spiritual belief almost a break from reality. It is not for everyone.