The Divine in all of us

A few years back I had a humbling epiphany about God.

I still struggle with religion — organized and theoretical — though I know I’m not supposed to, being that I go to church and take communion and all. I do believe it’s normal, though, and that lots of people nowadays struggle without ‘fessing up…

But a few years back I equated my belief in a divine presence with a core concept in the movie Contact.

This movie, by the way, is one of my absolute favorites of all time. The main character (Ellie Arroway, played by Jodie Foster) is a scientist obsessed with the idea of alien life. She sacrifices her relationships and her career in search of Proof, which finally arrives one day in the form of a booming “voice” from outer space. It was broken down into a language she could understand (with a little help) and the rest of the movie was about her pursuit of that voice, of making contact with the other beings, and ultimately about her reuniting with her father in order to make her peace with his death and her life.

The statement repeated throughout the movie in response to someone’s doubt (in extraterrestrials; in God) has stuck with me for years.

I’ll tell you one thing about the universe, though. The universe is a pretty big place. It’s bigger than anything anyone has ever dreamed of before. So if it’s just us… seems like an awful waste of space. Right?
(Ellie Arroway to a group of children)

See, ever since I was a little girl I wanted to be an astronaut. That was my life’s ambition until my first college physics class, which sent me in the direction of geology instead. *eye roll* Anyway, a few years back I was watching this movie for the umpteenth time, and I damn near swallowed my tongue during this scene.

The same can be said for God. For the Divine. I don’t care what people call it, because I believe there’s something greater and more meaningful than what our little brains can see and hear and taste and touch. I mentioned it in an earlier post about mysticism, and how even when I was a little girl I didn’t put much stock in separate religious sects or denominations.

Yes, I am a Christian. But I don’t believe those following the, say, Jewish faith are misguided. I need to learn more about other religions in this world; I’ve generally accepted Buddhism, Islam, and even Paganism without knowing much about their beliefs. But the differences are not that important to me (ack! sacrilege!).

If someone recognizes the Divine in me, and the connection — no matter how small or fragile — between the flower growing in the crack of our front sidewalk and the annoying cutworm eating my tender spring pepper plant (argh!!) then they too, acknowlege our link.

What do you see when you look around you?

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