18 June 2010

Day 83: Night

Night by Elie Wiesel.  ISBN: 9781883332501 (audiobook).

I used to pray to a God when I was younger.  I used to pray desperately and with a bleeding heart and the belief that it might actually change something.  I'm not sure exactly when I stopped praying, it was probably some time after I stopped believing in a being as a God.

I stopped believing because it no longer helped me with my problems.  I could not believe in a God when my life seemed to be falling apart around me.  I felt like I had been completely abandoned and that there was no way that there was anyone looking out for me.  Giving up God helped me to move past the hurt of abandonment and focus on trying to get past my current situation.  Some people find strength and comfort in God, I found it in giving God up.

In college I did take up praying again for awhile.  But it wasn't to God.  I prayed for direction and for Good Things to happen for the people I loved.  And rather than weeping and opening my heart at night to let the pain flow out and over me, I set up an altar to focus my thoughts and direct my intentions.  I found comfort in the ritual and maintenance of a space meant to express what I wanted to happen.

I don't think god will be upset that I no longer pray.  I'm sure god gives us what we need when we need it, but if he/she/it/they were a being or beings, there is no way they would be able not to give in to the suffering of humanity and relieve everyone's pain.  If that's the case I would just as soon not think of god as a being, and I would just as soon prefer not to pray when there's no empathetic ear on the other side.

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