I was thinking this morning of our shadow selves, our dark sides, that within us that rebels against the omnipresent authority of our Creator(s). Believers in a Higher Power have it harder than atheists and agnostics. Atheists don’t believe in God, so they don’t have to struggle against anything, at least from within. Agnostics don’t believe anyone can prove the existence of God. Science is working on that, but do any agnostics ever wonder if faith makes life easier and do any believers ever wonder if agnostics are right?
If we believe we practice a religion/spirituality, we experience, from time to time, a feeling of defiance, a not wanting to trust that God/Universe knows better than we do. Sometimes it shows itself when we’ve hit bottom: “Where are you now, God?” or “What kind of a God would let this happen?” Sometimes it raises its little head when we’re feeling cocky: “Man, I’m good at this,” or “I’ll bet Bob doesn’t make even close to what I make. He’s probably using charge cards to keep up with me.” Then there is greed: defined simply as desiring more than we need. “I want what I WANT and I want it now,” or “Wow, I wish I had one of those. I’m going shopping.”
If I hadn’t become ill and lost my ability to work and the home where I raised my children, along with the ‘right’ to buy whatever we wanted using charge cards, I would never have realized how blessed we in America are—most of us, anyway. If we have shelter, even if we’re renting, with furniture, a bathroom and kitchen, clean water and food, education and opportunity and work, we’re in really good shape. Those are things we need. According to me, anyway. (I suppose the starving people in Somalia would define need differently than I do.) After our needs are met, everything else is a want.
Wants and rebellion seem inescapable if you’re human. Even those of us who believe/know that God (Great Spirit/Higher Self) is Love and Compassion experience the urge to revolt. It doesn’t necessarily make sense to rebel against Love (it’s an innate problem with authority) but it is how we test the waters of life; it’s how we grow from aloneness to oneness.