Spirituality is and will always be thoughts and practices around a mystery.
Much of the ancient ideas of the universe and person are no longer mysteries.
Through time and science we have explained much of what was once unexplainable.
The ancients used to create beautiful language and narratives to explain things that now we have very technical language for. Language they were incapable of having.
Our unwillingness to evolve towards certain truths robs us of the evolution of spirituality and so crippling our ability to remain relevant. This creates religious people who are unwilling to move towards what is now revealed about God. Therefore instead of deep devotion to the sacred they are devoted merely to their idea of the sacred.
We’ve seen this throughout history when men discovered new ideas about creation and our origin. Rather than move towards these discoveries of our God’s creation. We fought to defend and shape the Genesis poem. We ask the length of day, we deny the age of the universe, we deny evolution. Or rationalize ideas like “God created things to appear old.” But with wisdom and reflection we see that we are not fighting for truth but rather our belief. And this belief wants to remain alive because this belief is connected deeply to our spirituality and what it means to exist.
But how deep is your spirituality? And how strong is your faith?
Can it move while at the same time remaining grounded? Can it die and spring up new life?
Perhaps you can find ease in this thought: If it is true, it is of God.
All the religions of the world teach things that are true. Often they teach similar things but through a different vantage or narrative.
As Franciscan Mystic, Fr. Richard Rohr illuminates, “Rather than my religion which has the whole truth alone, think- universal wisdom that my religion teaches this way. If it is true then it had to be true everywhere.”
You can deny narratives and still keep the truth. Because the truth is the point to begin with. That’s the part one is meant to uphold. The story gets you there.
It’s easy to fight for literalness of narratives like Genesis, because this fight often ignores and covers its ears to the challenge. It’s hard and painful to wrestle with the text. And yet this is the beauty of the story of Jacob.
Jacob “wrestles with God” and earns himself and his people that name.
Jacob wrestles with the unknown only to utter these words, “Surely the LORD was in this place, and I was unaware of it.”
Perhaps this is the gift of doubt. That when all faith seems to be challenged. When your belief seems to be dying….
The LORD is even there.
In that place.
Creating new life to your understanding of the divine.
Because still much remains mystery.