Friday, November 18, 2011
Who is God?
As I was reading comments people wrote about the show http://www.andersoncooper.com/episodes/all-american-muslims-debate-how-do-you-feel-about-muslims-living-in-the-us/ and was disturbed by people claiming that our country is Christian. They took the phrase in the Pledge of Allegiance "Under God" to imply that God referred to the Christian version of God only. Where does it say that? I believe in God and I believe when I say the Pledge of Allegiance that it still applies to me. However I am not a Christian.
There is a old riddle about an elephant that in my mind is a perfect way to describe what God is, and no I am not implying that God is an elephant though that could be a valid and in some religions is a valid implication. Basically three blind individuals each are standing next to the same elephant. One at the elephants nose, one at the elephants body and one at the elephants leg. Each describes what they think the elephant is. Each one describes the elephant differently. They are all correct but they are all also incorrect because they can not "see" the whole elephant. Just because different religions have different descriptions of God does not make them wrong. Even if we could see God with our eyes, hear God with our ears, and feel God with our hands would our descriptions be similar enough that we could all agree?
Some of you may have noticed I have not used a pronoun to refer to God. Why? I don't think they can truly apply to God. Is God a male? Is God a female? Is God both? Maybe God is neither? I do believe in the masculine and the feminine of God. Still I find myself referring to God as a male out of reflex, that is how I was raised.
I want to know more about other's beliefs it fascinates me. In other countries and through out history wars have been fought over religion. Our country was formed as a country where we would have freedom of religion. We can have open discussions of "who is God?" and we can decide what religion we want to follow. Even so religion is still something in America that can bring a crowd to riot. Our religious beliefs can be so strong that we are willing to fight to express them. We also should fight so others can express theirs.
One thing the Muslims interviewed on Anderson had to say about Sharia Law, which I keep hearing hearing Americans refer to when they argue that Muslims should be watched and not allowed, is that a countries laws supersede them. They made a point to say that the Koran instructs followers to follow a nations laws above all. They are American's first and follow our constitution. These were not my words but words I heard on the tv show. Still they make sense to me.
So who is God? What are your beliefs? What would you think if after all is said and done you find out that God is the giant bird in the above cartoon? It is possible that we are all right and then again it is also possible that we are all wrong. Still I have no problem with you having your beliefs, please share that courtesy with me and everyone else. Maybe through respect and understanding we can care a little less about who is right and start finding ways to get along.