Conversations with God
I began reading the Conversations with God (www.cwg.org) trilogy over one year ago. I was going through a time where I still had many questions that were not answered. – spiritual questions, religious questions, life questions. I was aware that there had to be better answers. The ones put forth and defended by family and the Church, especially, were not sufficient and were failing me in my attempt to understand – understand everything, i.e, the reasons for outcomes. I knew I could be a better human being if I were supplied the truths that the Church would not relinquish. Or if they were not relinquishing because they never had them but wouldn’t own up to the fact that they never had them.
My intuition told me that if we really were to love then it probably wasn’t a selective love. Alright to love whites but not other races; alright to love Christians, particularly Catholics, but not other religions that interpreted God in slightly different ways. And worse yet, those other religious factions were of a lesser grade than us Catholics? Or us Protestants? Or us Jews? Etc…
Why were people reportedly doomed to hell if they did not believe? Or doomed to hell (or purgatory) if they did not get baptized? Was there even such a thing as hell? And what’s this holding cell called purgatory anyway? Wouldn’t it just be better to go to hell – it’s definitive, it’s a place, you “know” why you’re there – the anticipation would unnerve me! In purgatory, you don’t know if you’re bad or good, going to hell or heaven, getting a F or an A.
Before reading these books called Conversation with God – Parts 1-3, I intuitively knew that love was universal and had not one filter. If love was love and love was God, if we were all God incarnate, how could these old beliefs be true or even viable? They couldn’t. I knew that. But, was I the only one? No, I was sure not but I was willing to not change my stance for the rest of my life and just live my life knowing that there was something else out there – a higher truth that I’d have to wait until death to experience.
My life up until that point of beginning Conversations with God (CwG) for now – was decent but not satisfying. I was still wandering without much direction. I was not equipped with the knowledge I needed. I continually asked God for answers to my questions. I didn’t think he answered them. I became increasingly dismayed that perhaps there was not even a God at all. But, I knew there was a God – how else to explain energy, outcomes, creation? So, if there was a God and I wasn’t getting the answers I needed, perhaps I was looking in the wrong places. Perhaps I was asking the wrong questions? No. The questions were good. Perhaps I didn’t know where to look for the answers. And, most of all, perhaps I didn’t really know or understand God.
Why would I fail at certain things and succeed at others? Why weren’t my most fervent aspirations – the big ones – answered at this point? Why did bad people sometimes succeed and why did the poor stay poor? I’m in my 40’s, plenty of time to have achieved success. But, I wasn’t successful by my measure. Why hadn’t I received all that I had asked for? According to my old religion, all I had to do was “ask, and it shall be granted you, right?”
My first issue with religion – I was brought up Catholic, was an alter boy, attended Church every Sunday until I was twenty-eight years of age – was its hierarchy. With hierarchy, those at the top are perceived to better than the others to whom they supposedly serve. With hierarchy – whether religious or political – there is power and those that are addicted to power find ways to justify the hierarchy to sustain that power. Those “ways” oftentimes have nothing at all to do with the reason for the creation of the religion or political party. Hierarchy is also a great economic tool. It pays. Those in power – whether you’re a bishop, Senator, Union chief – are compensated more than those being served. So, the focus therefore eventually leads to consolidation of powers, to justification of power in order to realize the same paycheck each week. Rather, I thought and still think, hierarchy should serve the whole, should serve the purpose. When the purpose has been met, change the mission of the entity, the people running it or dissolve it entirely.
So, it was and is with religious hierarchy that the message was purposely skewed in order to control the masses, the people it served. It was also meant to keep the roles in place. Power, not love, is everything. Power is the most expedient method by which one can achieve goals. Not love. If one can control outcomes, one attains desired results. There is no need for God. Except when we lose the power then we beg and ask God to get us back that power.
I’m not skeptical or exaggerating this. This has been my experience over the last 40+ years. I’ve seen the way we do things as a society, as a religion, as individual families. We have not succeeded. We fight wars as hostile as the ones fought during the Roman Empire. Religious animosity is not at its peak today. It has not lessened though. Just consider those days of Nero when Romans and Jews fought over Palestine. This is a span of over 2,000 years. Nothing has changed.
Hasn’t anyone realized this? Yes, we all have but we are too controlled, too static in our thoughts to want to change things. Like those before us, we accept inferior leadership, fight war after war in the name of God and country, we prostitute our spirituality and worse, accept the inferior versions of ourselves expecting that God or other controlling force will help corral us and turn the ship around.
So, there I was, in the Barnes and Noble bookstore on the Promenade in Santa Monica, walking down each aisle glancing at book titles when one book stood out. I don’t remember how or why. I was attracted to its cover: Conversations with God. Wow, I thought. Did someone have a conversation with God? Wish it had been me, I thought.
I turned the book over and read the following:
I have heard the crying of your heart. I have seen the searching of your soul.
I know how deeply you have desired the Truth.
In pain have you called out for it, and in joy.
Unendingly have you beseeched Me. Show Myself. Explain Myself. Reveal Myself.I am doing so here, in terms so plain, you cannot misunderstand.
In language so simple, you cannot be confused.
In vocabulary so common, you cannot get lost in the verbiage.
So go ahead now. Ask Me anything. Anything. I will contrive to bring you the answer. The whole universe will I use to do this. So be on your lookout; this book is far from My only tool. You may ask a question, then put this book down. But watch.
The words to the next song you hear. The information in the next article you read. The story line of the next movie you watch. The chance utterance of the next person you meet. Or the whisper of the next river, the next ocean, the next breeze that caresses your ear – all these devices are Mine; all these avenues are open to Me. I will speak to you if you will listen. I will come to you if you will invite Me. I will show you then that I have always been there.
I bought the book, read it, then was given the other installments, Part II and III, then Friendship with God and finally, Communion with God. I’ve not read Part II and “Communion.” But, I nonetheless, feel compelled to write, not for an audience but for myself. This is my meditation. My mindset has been altered, my questions answered.
Is it true that God chose one individual with whom to speak and settle things? Only you can answer that question. I’ve asked that question many times. Each time my intuition says yes, it’s possible – even when my mind wants to justify not.
The greatest thing about these conversations is that they make sense. They make sense of “bad luck,” successes, prayer, intentions, petitions answered and not answered, of wars, of religion. Most of all, they make sense of Me.