Six years ago, just after Easter time, I walked out of my current church. It was meant to be a break, a thinking space, a prayer space, a time to gather what was left of my wits and spend time in solitude. I meant to go back. I always meant to go back. Perhaps not to that church. But to a church.
Six years later I feel like one waking up from a dream, or possibly, from a nightmare. I am Awake, as the Buddhists say. And what a strange world it is. To step, blinking into the light, and look around at your life – your choices and decisions – and feel as thought they’d been made by someone else. And then to realize that that is essentially true. All the decisions of my life, from age 8 onwards, were made by a person firmly ensconced in Conservative, later Evangelical Christianity.
My intense journey of research, reading, reflection has resulted in the old paradigm not just shifting, but falling off of me. Like scales removed from my eyes, like layers of uncomfortable clothing being shed, I find myself standing spiritually naked in the sunshine of these revelations. Resurrection, phoenix rising – pick the metaphor you will. I can’t go back. Can’t pick up the heavy weight of the Patriarchy, or the laws, rules, and thoughts of time gone by.
I realize that all churches I’ve watched dying, waning, losing their members and their potency to challenge the Collective Soul – they are not just an anomaly. They are caught up in a fundamental shift of the Collective Consciousness that will neither be denied nor stopped. We are being remade. We shall be remade, whether we will it or not. Some are circling the wagons, hiding their eyes. Singing louder, like little children, as if to block out the sound of the bell tolling for them.
I am glad now, that I am out. Though it has been a lonely journey, it has been a relief to have several years of thinking my own thoughts. When I see people say the sort of things I used to say, and think the sort of things I used to think – I marvel, and have the vague sense that I have escaped out from under a spell, or from having been brainwashed. It is an unsettling feeling.
Today is also astronomically and astrologically significant. It is the Equinox, a solar eclipse, and a supermoon. A friend posted an article on Facebook that led me to this one:
And the amazing thing is that these folks finally put into words the thoughts and feelings I’ve been having for the past few years, but especially the past few months. Without realizing that this shift was occurring, I have felt an intense need to shed the past – sorting out clutter – from my head, my heart, my home. Old stuff, both physical and metaphysical, being purged. In a society obsessed with the newest, biggest, best I have felt very out of place, getting rid of the old without bringing in much new.
Near the beginning of this journey, when my littlest son was only in preschool, we had a “home visit” from his teacher. It was part of the special ed. program – teacher sees student in his own “environment” to analyze what other needs may need to be addressed in the classroom. As I welcomed her in, I apologized for the piles of stuff everywhere, and told her I was in the middle of a big sorting project. “Oh, are you guys moving to a bigger house?” she asks. As if the only reason to sort out clutter was to move up to a bigger – and therefore better – house. I told her that no, I just wanted more living space in our current house. She seemed utterly nonplussed by this. I was an anomaly in a world that always sees newer, faster, bigger, showier as better.
The strangeness of being Awake while most everyone around is Asleep.