Flying makes me think about death.
I’ve always heard it is safer to fly than to drive. Still, I get nervous that my plane will crash.
I comfort myself by imagining possible scenarios and how I like to think I will respond.
A terrorist stands up? I’ll call for help and tackle them.
Something goes wrong with an engine? I mark the exits in my mind, plan out my steps, and note anyone who might need assistance getting off the plane.
This calms me. It really does.
Then my mind drifts to what people might do and say at my funeral. Will it be fun? Who will come? Should I have left final notes for everyone just in case I die and I haven’t somehow communicated my love? (For me, the answer to this question is yes, yes always. There is no harm in telling someone too much that you love them. I’ve agonized about this quite a bit, but my conclusion is always the same: do it. Love, love, love, always. Leave the other person with their responsibility to tell you when they’ve heard enough.)
I’ve learned a lot about myself in the past few years.
First of all, I fall in love constantly. AND IT NEVER RUNS OUT!
As Jeannette Winterson writes,
Do you fall in love often?’ Yes often. With a view, with a book, with a dog, a cat, with numbers, with friends, with complete strangers, with nothing at all
This is me to a T. Sometimes I beg myself to stop because it’s exhausting. If you haven’t done it recently, let me remind you of what it feels like to be love-struck: ALL-CONSUMING, MIND-BENDING, TIME-WARPING, SPIRIT-TRANSFORMING. On paper that doesn’t sound too bad, and it’s not. I’m sure I enjoy it, otherwise I wouldn’t do it, right?
But with all that, how is one expected to do anything but BE IN LOVE? With a lover, with friends, with trees, with life in general??
I don’t know. Sometimes I believe that’s all I do, all I am.
I have the best sweetheart in the world. He’s brilliant. Creative. Caring. And super-cute too. The love of my life. While we’re on different continents, he’s starting to post on his blog too. Yay.
When I fall in love with something or someone (because really, everyone is so amazing), he’s the first to know.
And, I am in a perpetual state of falling… for my best friends, people I meet briefly (especially those who wink), the color blue, water (God, I love water), babies, chocolate… and my family. And my friends. And the light in this room. And the power of you.
The night before I left for France I got to catch up with one of my closest friends. We talked about church and faith and love. We met at NYU and got to know each other through Bible Studies, so these questions aren’t unusual. Like with most of my Christian friends and family, I’ve totally avoided talking about how my beliefs have changed.
Until now. I am giving myself permission to talk about religion.
Hiding this part of my journey feels like lying. And, even if I do not believe in Christianity the way I used to, I still want to talk about religion, faith, spirituality, and all that is sacred. Those of you who could care less about the details, I’m leaving you with your responsibility to skip them.
Go wander into someone else’s cyber world.
In response to my best friend’s questions, I stuttered, as I probably will here. I am scared of losing my closest friends and family; not to mention disappointing my Dad who is a strong believer.
But I am going to say my truth and I am going to live it.
“I don’t go to church anymore, and I don’t consider myself a Christian in many of the ways I used to…
I still believe in Love and that God is love.”
It was all I could offer over the phone as images of stars twirling, redwoods growing, waves crashing, and blood pulsing filled my mind.
But, now, I’ll give you more.
- The power of love heals, transforms, and inspires; love keeps our souls in motion.
- My God=Love.
- In myself. And you. And your mom. And your dad.
- In consciously creating our own lives.
- In honoring those who have come before us.
- In protecting this place for the souls who are still to come.
- In living with integrity, always.
- We must say yes for the right reasons, and say no, also for the right reasons, and always be open to learning something new and changing our ways of being and thinking.
- In God and Jesus and the birds and the bees and the trees. And the stars. And the sun. And your cute face.
- Our beliefs are the foundational blueprints for how we live our lives. And our foundations are TRES IMPORTANTE!
- That there is no hierarchy among the sacred.*
* I reserve the right to change any of these beliefs at any moment without any notice, (obviously).1