We Don’t Need Gods or Religions to be Spiritual
Thinking Queerly: 52-Weeks of Critical Reflections On Liberating Humanity, Week 4.
We don’t need gods or religions to be spiritual.
Religions are constructs of the mind used to control the minds of the many.
There is a reason why the bible refers to followers as sheep and the spiritual leader as a “herder.” Even the language of religion communicates corralling and controlling.
If we look deeply within ourselves to study the nature of consciousness, we discover that we are all connected.
We all come from the same place: this planet, earth. We are of nature like every other creature, plant, and organism.
When we realize that we are all connected, there is no need for spirit, the illusion that props up the construct of religion.
When you look out into nature, what creatures lay prostate observing religious practices?
Going into the darkness of your consciousness to bring forth the inner light of your humanity is what will truly save you.
You can awaken within the limitless nature of your consciousness — you don’t need to follow a limited and dogmatic construct in the form of religion and ideology.
Remember that even with your eyes closed, you can still see something within your visual field. In other words, you are not blind to your conscious awareness.
See things as they truly are, not for an illusion created by others to control your perceptions.
A Critical Reflection of Religion
It is difficult for me to speak about any religion in a forgiving or understanding way. That’s on me, and I only share that to be honest with where I’m coming from. I also came from a very pious Catholic upbringing, serving at my church as altar boy, usher, and then a lector. In my early teens, I considered the priesthood, and discovered later in life that this is a shared experience of many other gay men who grew up religious.
It wasn’t until I was 16 and 17 that I began to ask questions for which I had no more answers or excuses that could reconcile my faith, my belief in a higher power, or blindly following what I later learned to be a sexist, patriarchal system.
The lure of religion and blind faith is that it absolves the individual of personal responsibility and thinking for oneself. Yes, perhaps what I am sharing is a kind of belief system, but if it is, it is one without dogma or ideology.
Through the teachings of the Tao Te Ching I have learned that we can look to nature and witness the mystery of how it works.
Science may investigate and explain the workings of the world, and all that is fine and good. Yet nature can teach us a way for living in harmony, a philosophy of being and realizing that we are connected with all other life on this planet, and that we are just as much the “stuff” of our universe as is every other organism on this planet.
Practice Today’s Queer Contemplation
I invite you to imagine living freely in a world without control. By control, I mean enforced limitations set up as rules which must be followed — scriptures that must be recited word for word without derivation; rituals that must be observed; penance and tithing that must be given to the patriarch in control.
Can you imagine how you would lead yourself and inspire others to lead themselves in a humanitarian, humanist way that supports uniqueness, but connects us all?