Wednesday, February 20, 2013

What's in a word?

How do you define Justice? It is a word we use and hear rather frequently, but when you try to put a hard definition on it, it seems that there really isn't any consensus as to what we think it means. What about Beauty? We can say I find this beautiful, but can we really put that into a hard boxed in definition? We try of course, Beauty could be defined as “Something one finds esthetically ple...asing,” but those words seem so flat, hardly representative of something as glorious as true Beauty.

In Shinto, the word for a spirit is kami, but it doesn't just end there. It is also the word for the feeling of awe one gets when perceiving the beauty of nature. I don't mean to say that these are two separate things that share the same label, but that in Shinto these things are inseparable. But again, it is just a word, and a hard definition cannot contain the entirety of what the word is supposed to label.

What do we say when we say The Goddess? Or Godherself? Or even God? What comes to mind? Perhaps those three words have very different emotional charges for your Fetch, perhaps not.

Is Justice something real? Something tangible that we can put our finger on and say “There, that is Justice”? Would every other person agree with what you are pointing at? And yet, there is the word, the feeling, the idea, that such a thing as Justice exists.

Such is the way with Spirit, with our connection to the Divine. We may use shared language, words like God, or Spirits, or The Way, but the assumption that we mean the same thing when we say those words is false. So when people start to invalidate the experience of others because it deviates from their Way, it shows a lack of understanding of the Immensity of Spirit. The Way that can be named is not Absolute, for no name is Absolute enough to hold The Way.

God is a feeling. God is an experience. God is not a tradition. It is not a label. Traditions and labels are vehicles, not the end result.

God just IS, and who am I to tell you that your IS isn't the Way?

I guess the ultimate question is, Who am I?

THAT'S the work, that's the path, that's the goal. Discovery of God through our experiences. Those experiences come in every shape and size. When we have our attention spend on condemning the experiences of others, that is attention taken away from your own experience, your own relationship with God.

“Abstain from all interferences with other wills. ‘Beware lest any force another, King against King!’ (The love and war in the previous injunctions are of the nature of sport, where one respects, and learns from the opponent, but never interferes with him, outside the actual game.) To seek to dominate or influence another is to seek to deform or destroy him; and he is a necessary part of one’s own Universe, that is, of one’s self.”
-Crowley from “Duty”

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