This I Believe

Richard - Saco, Maine
Entered on June 11, 2007

I’m for the Sun

I’m for the sun. My sister is for God, but I’m not sure about God. The sun I have confidence in. I believe the sun will return tomorrow to warm and light the Earth just as it has done for billions of years. My sister attributes her existence to God, but I can’t accept in the same way she does that there might be some kind of intelligent force in the universe that is somehow responsible for my life; but I can easily see how the sun is responsible for everything I eat, breathe and drink.

Everything I need in this world is provided by the heat, light and energy from the sun. I love being present at the dawn of a new day to witness the reassuring return of the sun above the horizon. If there’s anything that gives me hope for tomorrow and the future of our planet, it is the sun.

I cannot easily attribute to the sun the ground we stand on, but the sun’s affect on geology is apparent. The deep underground may be derived from volcanic activity but the rocks near the surface have been eroded by the cycles of weather, rain and heat. Topsoil and loam plants and animals live in is made by the sun through growth, photosynthesis, dying and decay.

We attended the funeral for an old friend and heard the minister repeat all the comforting words of resurrection and life ever after. It seemed to me he was repeating a rumor perpetuated down through the centuries by the reach and influence of the Roman Empire. First person accounts to that event are sketchy at best and hard evidence is lacking for a miracle which is supposed to have happened only once in our history.

I wanted to remind our friends about the sun; about how even in the depths of their sorrow and grief a new day will come. It always does. No matter how bad things may seem we should take heart in what we experience every day. The sun rises every day to bring us warmth and light and life. Even the gasoline I burn in my car came from the ancient sun when plants grew and died and decayed to become fossil fuel. The wood for my home, the clothes for me and my children we owe all to the sun. Food, clothing and shelter, the necessities for our survival all come eventually from the sun.

It’s not that I worship the sun, but I appreciate it. I benefit directly and indirectly from its influence on the earth. It seems to me the evidence for God is circumstantial and not easy to discern; therefore I’m skeptical.

I look at it this way. If by some new or scientific way we were suddenly able to prove that God did not exist, how would that fact change our lives? Probably not very much. But, suppose the sun should suddenly cease to exist? That would be the end of us and life as we know it. For me the jury is still out on the question of God, but what I really believe in is the sun. I know with certainty it will be there. I have confidence in its reappearance. The sun gives me life and it gives me hope, and that’s why I’m for the sun.