Issue #196 / June 2022
In your opinion, what is God?
SUE, PARIS, FRANCE
God is love, which is why I have difficulty relating to the atheist position. Every one of us, even the most spiritually resistant, yearns for love, whether we realise it or not. And this yearning calls us forever toward its objective – that we must love each other. We must love each other. And mostly I think we do – or we live in very close proximity to the idea, because there is barely any distance between a feeling of neutrality toward the world and a crucial love for it, barely any distance at all. All that is required to move from indifference to love is to have our hearts broken. The heart breaks and the world explodes in front of us as a revelation.
There is no problem of evil. There is only a problem of good. Why does a world that is so often cruel, insist on being beautiful, of being good? Why does it take a devastation for the world to reveal its true spiritual nature? I don’t know the answer to this, but I do know there exists a kind of potentiality just beyond trauma. I suspect that trauma is the purifying fire through which we truly encounter the good in the world.
Each day I pray into the silence. I pray to all of them. All of them who are not here. Into this emptiness, I pour all my desire and want and need, and in time this absence becomes potent and alive and activated with a promise. This promise that sits inside the silence is beauty enough. This promise, right now, is amazement enough. This promise, right now, is God enough. This promise, right now, is as much as we can bear.