I believe we should pray FOR God, not TO God. I believe God is tired. I believe he’s depressed. He’s been used, maligned, had crimes committed in his name… So I pray for God. I pray that he’ll get better.
When I was in my twenties I’d been praying that he would help me with my latest aspirations when I suddenly realized I was perfectly capable of taking care of myself without bothering God with my earthling hopes and dreams. I humbly promised I would never bother him again. I realized that money, love, friendship, success, and health were all things I could assume responsibility for. I knew God was busy with keeping the Earth on its axis, and trying to help humans to understand compassion and love: these should be the only things he has to worry about.
I‘m not an atheist. Not by my own definition, anyway. But even though I was raised Christian, I don’t believe in the God of Christianity, and can’t repeat the Profession of Faith, even if I think Jesus was a good person with some good things to offer to humanity. I don’t believe any particular God or religion.
Why? Because I also believe that the ten commandments, and all the laws of the land, basically, can be condensed into one law: don’t steal. Don’t steal a life by killing someone, don’t steal money or a piece of candy, don’t steal the love of your neighbor’s wife, don’t steal the tranquility of your fellow humans… Because if you steal any of these things, your neighbor won’t sleep well, and he’ll be suspicious, and he’ll have bad faith, and a society of bad faith is a society that breeds unhappiness and violence. Being a good Christian, or a good anything, it seems, is really only a matter of being considerate.
I wish the best for my fellow humans. I try to encourage them to do as I do, even if nobody takes me seriously. I know humans are essentially prone to the faults of racism, greed, and pride. And I don’t mind. These are all things that we can become self-aware of, assume responsibility for, and tame. I wish we could laugh about these things in ourselves, rather than deny them. If we could, perhaps we wouldn’t kill other people in whom we see these very same faults, and talk with them instead, and help reduce human suffering. Perhaps we’d smile at ourselves, together, as fellow humans.
I believe that there should be an international day of mourning for all the people ever killed in wars, friend and foe alike. For every victory, someone on our side died. But another human on the other side also died in the procurement of our victory, and deserves our grief and thanks as well.
But to God, I only say thanks for everything.
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