Exploring the nature of God is important because beliefs about this vital phenomenon vary so widely.
Some people understandably struggle with images of Creator taught by ancient religions. They wonder why their child die or why so much suffering occurs if a Supreme Being is really so loving, powerful, and omniscient. Some people feel justifiably angry and question whether any God or afterlife really exist.
Those are all fair questions that invariably arise from a model of a separate superman-like deity.
However, much collective evidence indicates that the Source is not a big bearded man sitting on a throne in the sky somewhere. Humanity’s evolution has been hampered by viewing a Higher Power in our image, instead of realizing we were made in the image of Spirit.
During my theological school studies, God was defined as the highest power that can be conceived. My highest image of this phenomenon is that of love, peace, creativity, wisdom, and power.
In his book The G.O.D. Experiments,Dr. Gary E. Schwartz used the acronym G.O.D. to stand for the universal “guiding, organizing and designing” process in life. This phenomenon has historically been called many names by religions, for example, Yahweh, God, and Allah.
I added the letters E and L that stand for Energizing and Loving. The acronym E.L.G.O.D. describes more of the attributes of this ultimately ineffable Life Source. The additional letters E and L also honor ancient names for the Divine. El or Al– the root words of Elohim, Eloha, Allah, and other sacred names – meant That, The One, or That One which expresses itself uniquely through all things.
In An Open Life, Joseph Campbell, the brilliant scholar, author and interpreter of sacred traditions, stated: “The divine lives within you… the separateness that is apparent in the phenomenal world is secondary. Beyond, and behind, and within, and supporting that world is an unseen but experienced unity and identity in us all.”
The following description of Creator is, based on the evidence, quite accurate. In Destiny of Souls, Michael Newton, Ph.D., quotes a female client who was one of the most evolved beings he had ever interviewed during a Life Between Lives session. To slightly paraphrase, she described Oneness, the Presence as: ‘Massive but soft. Powerful yet gentle. There is a breath, a whisper of sound that is so pure. The sound creates all, including light and energy. The sound holds this structure and makes it move, shifting and undulating, creating everything. It is a reverberating bell, then a high-pitched pure humming like an echo of a mother full of love singing to her child.’
These descriptions of the Ground of All Being are, needless to say, quite different from horrific ones that many of us were taught at an early age. Do the words “wrathful, judging, and fearsome” sound familiar? Some denominations still teach about a Life Source of unfathomable love and then, in the next sentence, warn that It will send us to, or allow us to choose, a fiery hell for eternity.
Can you say “schizophrenia?”
Clark H. Pinnock, theology professor at McMaster Divinity College, stated: “How can Christians possibly project a deity of such cruelty and vindictiveness” as to inflict “everlasting torture upon his creatures, however sinful they may have been.” I agree with his conclusion that a Higher Power that would do such a thing is “more nearly like Satan than like God.”
We need to reconsider our notions about Creative Energy, to refute half-truths and mistruths that were taught in the guise of truth. The collective evidence refutes any notion of a vengeful Source that watches our every step and smites us at the least transgression.
Think about it for a moment with common sense instead of brainwashed fear. What loving parents would pass their child’s finger over a flame, even for a second, no matter what the transgression? How, then, could any believe that an all loving, all knowing, and all powerful Creator would for eternity?
Rediscovering the original meanings of sacred teachings conveys greatly different views. Aramaic translations, for example, reveal more accurate understandings from that pivotal time and place that so greatly influenced Judaism, Islam and Christianity.
Regarding the primary Aramaic meanings for the Supreme, Neil Douglas-Klotz, Ph.D., stated on my radio show: “The root words for God are ‘Eloha’ or ‘Alaha’ from the Hebrew ‘Elohim.’ All these words mean unity, sacred unity, or one Beingness. The Jewish or Aramaic notion of the Divine is not a being sitting somewhere, someplace as in a room above us, but a unity of which we are a part, of which our being is a part.”
He continued, “Both Jesus and the Hebrew prophets before him shared this bigger picture of the Divine. That’s quite different from our Western conception. Our problem is that when this conception was squeezed through the Greek language and thinking into Western Christianity, only a very small part of this meaning was carried across the language bridge.”
If you were taught notions about a Source that seemed bizarre, realize that the offending information was likely incomplete or incorrect. Some people become atheists or agnostics because they understandably find the idea of no Higher Powerto make more sense than the strange images they were taught.
I and eleven great minds about consciousness topics – Raymond Moody, Caroline Myss, Anita Moorjani, Gary Schwartz, and others – discuss contemporary understandings about God and other big questions in The Eleven Questions.
Many people are shocked by denominations that claim their view is the only right one and all others are doomed to a fiery eternal hell. At the “God at 2000 Conference,” professor of religion and author Marcus Borg, Ph.D., said: “I find it literally incredible that the God of the whole universe has chosen to be known by one religious tradition.” He said that all great religions of the world believe in an encompassing Spirit that is part of everyday life. In this view, termed panentheism, Universal Intelligence is not only transcendent (beyond human experience), but also immanent(dwelling within all life).
Rev. Matthew Fox is a theologian, Episcopal priest, founder of Creation Spirituality, and author of over twenty books including Natural Grace. He rejects theism, the concept that “God is way out there someplace, as far away as he can get.” Fox stated: “God is life per se life, God is in the midst of everything that’s bubbling, everything that’s vital. And that is panentheism, to see God in all things.”
In Wisdom of the Ages, Wayne Dyer, Ed. D., stated, “Imagine being fully aware that you carry God about with you. If God is everywhere, then there is no place that God is not. And this includes you. Once you connect to this understanding, you regain the power of your very source. Rather than seeing yourself as separate from the miraculous power of God, you claim your divinity and reclaim all the potency that God is. You are a principal work, a fragment of God Himself.”
Joseph Campbell said that humanity’s search for the Supreme has been encumbered by conceiving the Absolute as a personality. He wrote, “As soon as you smash the local provincial ‘God-form,’ God comes back. And that’s what Nietzsche meant when he wrote that God is dead. Nietzsche was himself not an atheist in the crude sense; he was a man of enormous religious spirit and power. What he meant was that the God who’s fixed and defined in terms appropriate for 2,000 years ago is no longer so today. The divine lives within you. And what is God? God is a personification of that world-creative energy and mystery which is beyond thinking and beyond naming.”
As discussed by Jeffrey Moses in Oneness:Great Principles Shared by All Religions, the theme of being one with the Oneis echoed throughout the world’s religions:
- Hinduism: “God bides hidden in the hearts of all.”
- Shintoism: “Do not search in distant skies for God. In man’s own heart is He found.”
- Sikhism: “Why wilt thou go into the jungles? What do you hope to find there? Even as the scent dwells within the flower, so God within thine own heart ever abides. Seek Him with earnestness and find Him there.”
- Christianity: “The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: neither shall they say, “Lo, here! Or, lo there! For, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.”
- Confucianism: “What the undeveloped man seeks is outside; what the advanced man seeks is within himself.”
I hope this discussion about the Ground of All Being helps answer your toughest questions that naturally arise when struggling with life’s greatest changes and challenges. The great news is that we each are part and parcel of the same intelligence and energy that created and sustains the universe. As such, we each have everything we need to survive and thrive through all events.
May you always deeply know who you are, why you’re here, and Who walks beside/ within you always . . . and live accordingly.
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Thank you for sharing this article with others who can use it. I hope that this article – and taking the action steps discussed – help you feel more happy, healthy, peaceful, clear, and energetic. You deserve to feel that way and the world needs your greatest gifts.
Life and love are forever. Shall we live accordingly?
Mark Pitstick, MA, DC is an author, master’s clinical psychologist, holistic chiropractic physician, frequent media guest, and workshop facilitator. He is director of The Soul Phone Foundation, co–founder of Greater Reality Living Groups,and board member of Helping Parents Heal. Dr. Pitstick can help you know and show– no matter what is going on around you – that your earthly experience is a totally safe, meaningful, and magnificent adventure amidst forever. Visit About Dr. Mark Pitstickfor his full bio.
Note: Because of his many outreaches, Dr. Pitstick can no longer answer complex and multiple questions from individuals. However, he has created many resources to answer your biggest questions and provide holistic solutions to your toughest challenges.
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Disclaimer:This information is not designed to replace medical or psychological care. My remarks are based on over forty-five years of study, training, personal experience, and professional service. Extensive clinical, scientific, and empirical evidence supports much, but not all, of what I say. My current best understandings may change over time. I do not claim to have all the answers or the only answers. My hope is that this information assists you to consider what makes the most sense to you.