Some­times I won­der if God came on down to earth just to shut us whiny humans up. I sort of see the whole faith rela­tion­ship thing as a strug­gle between my desire to be as capa­ble and autonomous as pos­si­ble with my nec­es­sary recog­ni­tion that at times I’ve got to ask for help. But it seems like the Israelites and the Jews were tougher folks to please in the Bible.

So basi­cal­ly, Jesus was sent to redeem us. Per­haps that redemp­tion can take on anoth­er form by reliev­ing us of any excus­es for com­plain­ing about our lot. Jesus did not have an easy time, by all accounts. So, by com­ing down and liv­ing among us, suf­fer­ing hor­ri­bly, and dying bereft of all pow­er and solace, God can effec­tive­ly tell us to shut up and buck­le down when we com­plain about how rough our life is.

For some rea­son I can eas­i­ly pic­ture reli­gious folks pre-Jesus [and maybe still] com­plain­ing that God can’t real­ly under­stand the lot of humans because he has nev­er been one. I guess the dis­tinc­tion here would be between know­ing and under­stand­ing. God knows what it means to be human, but the argu­ment could be made that he didn’t under­stand what it means to be human until he was one him­self.

What I’m get­ting at is the fun­da­men­tal sense of alone­ness, or need of ful­fill­ment that most humans seem to have. You could accept it [like Bud­dhists I guess], deny it [sec­u­lar folks] or fill it with some­thing [like most reli­gious faith]. So unless God under­stands just how humans feel alone, how could he effec­tive­ly know what is best for us? So Jesus shows up, lives as a human, is tor­tured, and kicks the buck­et. There are plen­ty of accounts show­ing that while most of this occurred he was in com­mu­nion with God the Father, so not real­ly alone in the human sense. Because no oth­er human has had a direct line to God.

But the key to under­stand­ing for God [from the stand­point of those who com­plain that he does not under­stand] is removed when Jesus asks, in the midst of his cru­ci­fix­ion, why his father has for­sak­en him. That is its own epiphany and a most effec­tive exam­ple of just how ded­i­cat­ed God is to his cre­ations. God leaves Jesus for the first time in his life, at the worst pos­si­ble time in Jesus life and Jesus gets over­whelmed with the ter­ri­ble weight of lone­li­ness. That seems pret­ty effec­tive in silenc­ing the com­plain­ers to me. And the true les­son comes after that, when Jesus, though now utter­ly alone, is able to imme­di­ate­ly have faith in his father and ask for­give­ness on those who have hurt them and plac­ing his spir­it in the care of his dad­dy.

Of course, I might have just cre­at­ed a straw man to attack it.

In anoth­er pos­si­bly heresy, it is sort of clich say that God has been cre­at­ed by Man. Well, why not? And what is wrong with that? Why does God need to appear ex nihi­lo? If there is a spark of divine in all of us, who is to say that by doing good we don’t in some way cre­ate God. If you are Hin­du or Bud­dhist this seems rote prob­a­bly. All are part of Krish­na. Why not the Chris­t­ian, Jew­ish or Mus­lim God then? It is the same God, we could not attain the divine unless we had it inher­ent to our­selves [anoth­er assump­tion for anoth­er post]. Who is to say that God isn’t split among us all and that only by our own actions can we reach par­adise by cre­at­ing God again?

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  • I hear that! I am read­ing “Life of Pi” right now. And the char­ac­ter in the sto­ry is try­ing to find out what reli­gion real­ly is as he grows up. He is young and doesn’t under­stand why he can’t be Mus­lim, Catholic, and Hin­du at the same time. Very inter­est­ing. You start won­der­ing why you can’t.….

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