Why do we put God in a Box? 

I recall that as a little girl I used to feel a great sense of wonder, joy and magic in nature – in the sound of dry leaves under foot, the sound of the waves, the perfume of flowers, the beauty of a butterfly, the birds singing in the morning, the feeling of a gentle breeze on my skin and much more. In nature I could feel a connection to a grandness, to something more than just the physical world and more than just me. What I also recall as a little girl was that no one else, or at least the adults around me, seemed to experience the same level of wonder or sense of magic – or this was not expressed.

I did not know it then but this was me feeling and connecting to God through the magic of God that surrounds us all, and to this day I still feel a very strong connection to God through the reflections of nature. I’ve come to know that the grandness I felt and continue to feel so powerfully in nature, is simply and powerfully a reflection of the grandness of God within me. But as a child, I was presented with another picture of God.

As a young child, I don’t recall having any particular picture of God beyond that of an older bearded man with light all around him. I wasn’t raised within a religion and neither of my parents had strong religious backgrounds. I recall having conversations about ‘Christian’ values such as ‘treat others as you would treat yourself,’ and that the way you live every day and your relationships with others was more important than reading the Bible or attending Church every week. I seem to remember talking about the story of Jesus, and about religion in terms of the different faiths and the Church, but I don’t recall any conversations about God; who or what He actually was.

At the age of five or six I went to the occasional Sunday school session and so became more aware of religion and the teachings of the Church and while I was curious, they made no sense to me. What was presented was a very particular picture of God, along with ways of connecting to him, of earning his love, and of course how to return to him in heaven. All of a sudden I was being taught rules about ways to behave and it seemed you could only be connected to God if you read the Bible and/or went to Church to listen to someone else talk about God. None of this felt true to me, even then. There was no sense of wonder or joy in these experiences. God was reduced to a study in words – and I felt no magic.

I didn’t give God or religion any thought for many years and was strongly against any form of organised religion. Then I met Serge Benhayon who presents the teachings of the Ageless Wisdom, and based on these has introduced The Way of The Livingness, a true religion based on the simple principle that religion is about living in connection with your inner-most heart, with the divine part of ourselves, with our essence. It is this simple principle that has reignited my connection with God and the ongoing development of my own personal relationship with God. I can see how my opposition to organised religion kept me from questioning the role it plays in defining God and our relationship with God, which I now know is also our relationship with ourselves.

From what I can see, organised religion puts God in a box, and us along with him, shaping the way we see and relate to God, to other people and to other religions. Strong moral codes and beliefs within organised religion shape our behaviour and tend to focus our efforts in life on what happens when we die and bringing about a constant striving to be good enough to enter heaven. At the same time, wars have been fought in the name of religion for centuries, and groups or individuals who practise religion ‘outside of the box’ have been vilified, cast as deviant and evil and even wiped out by the dominant religion of the day. The Cathars and the later European witch hunts stand out as examples.

Our relationship to God has been complicated by organised religion as it offers a bastardised version of God and our relationship to Him. For some, as it was with myself, the reaction to religion keeps their backs turned to God. One could easily conclude that organised religion is a form of control, a formalised system that keeps us from knowing the truth about God.

I’ve come to know through The Way of The Livingness that true religion connects us back to the truth that “the Kingdom of God is within you,” reminding us that we are all equal Sons of God, and in that, God is not someone separate from us, or mightier than us, but the very essence of who we are. True religion is simply about our personal and ever evolving connection and relationship with God, with our own divinity and with humanity. In true religion there are no pictures or rules.

I am of God, as we all are, and in our hearts we know this to be true, but in the minds of mankind everything must have its place and so God has been put in a box. In our hearts there are no boxes, only the offering of an ever deepening connection with our essence, and therefore with God.

By Michelle, Social Science Researcher, Brisbane

Related Reading:
The Magic of God in Nature
Organised Religion versus True Religion
What is true religion?

479 thoughts on “Why do we put God in a Box? 

  1. It feels strange to make a bible-related comment but one of the statements in there is “The kingdom of God is inside you”, which seems hard to square with looking in a building for God.

  2. Reducing God to be something that we can only be accessed through the written word takes away from the experience of living with Him.

  3. As children it seems we have a natural and in-built connection to God and being in nature is a beautiful way of confirming this and consolidating this inner depth. Our true growth in essence occurs inwards, and yet what is interesting to observe is how we grow up from childhood into adults and the inner growth tends to be forgotten and our focus becomes the outer growth. But even as adults, nature seems to be the key trigger that supports us to remember this inner growth – there is an unwritten association between nature and the presence of God, and we can use this reflection and reminder to turn inwards again and feel our true origins and re-start the inward growth again. What a blessing!

  4. We have got ourselves into a lot of trouble trying to package God and religion while losing our natural connection with our godly qualities along the way. As you say “In true religion there are no pictures or rules.”

  5. As a child I always knew that God was within and everywhere, but the world that I saw didn’t make sense to what I knew. I found a lot of what I saw in the name of God and religion very disturbing. The Way of The Livingness has supported me to make sense of all of that and confirm that what I had always felt was true and true for all.

  6. I really enjoyed this blog, it resonated with me on so many levels. I was not raised Religious but was strongly opposed to organised Religion as I viewed it as a way of exercising control over others. The fact that we all belonged and are apart of something much larger has always been very apparent to me and through nature, dreams and interactions. Becoming a student of The Way of The Liviningness I begun to discover a magic. This magic has always been known to me but I had been long forgotten.Its something that is a normal daily occurrence and its now known to me as the magic of God.

    1. It’s interesting Sarah that you talk about using your beliefs opposing organised religion as a way of exercising control over others. I feel the same about the rules imposed by religions on how people need to live to “find” God. Once we begin to let go of that control there is a much greater richness in everyday life that we begin to feel and connect to and feel that we all are so much more that what we could even possibly think or believe. I had an amazing conversation with a client yesterday who was talking about how we remain connected to the essence of someone even when they have died. To me being present in these conversations is deeply rich and a constant reminder that the magic of God is literally everywhere if we are open to truly seeing it. It turns the normal everyday into extraordinary everyday.

  7. “but in the minds of mankind everything must have its place” – this ‘thinking’ has done humanity much harm and has reduced us to living in a much more reduced version of who we truly are when we come from the mind only and place such limitations on life. We are much grander than what we have been sold.

  8. It is fascinating. We feel the union with the all when we are in nature, we naturally know that we are with God and know the feeling in our body of this. Yet, when we are brought into any institutionalised religion we have to learn to override, deny and neglect what we know naturally regarding feeling God, and say yes to something that does not feel at all true, and that is not true. And, all of that to avoid disappointing our parents.

  9. For what is God? Love that is grander than we can comprehend, a gloriousness that is vast and joyful, and we all have that divinity within us, so we are that too. It is just needing to be lived.

  10. We not only put God in a box we tend to frame everything in life so we can get an understanding on it and yet we are and there is so much more than the images, pictures and frames we can reduce ourselves to fit into. When we create ‘boxes’ we can only see what is within them, that is until we lift the lid and hop out.

  11. The one thing that did stand our to me when introduced to religion through school and church when young and over the years is “The Kingdom of God is with-in you”. This my body has always said yes to, while saying no to the organized religions, church gatherings and sermons.

  12. The way Religion was taught to me was very formal and distancing. The Way of The Livingness as presented by Serge Benhayon is completely opposite to this and our connection is as you say Michelle, in our inner heart.

    1. Yes, I can relate to that, religion at school was taught by the least inspiring teacher I had, it was dull flat and mundane probably because it was missing truth. The moment we bring the truth of religion and God to our lives we are naturally brought back to feeling joy, harmony and love within.

  13. I love you concluding remark –”I am of God, as we all are, and in our hearts we know this to be true, but in the minds of mankind everything must have its place and so God has been put in a box. In our hearts there are no boxes, only the offering of an ever deepening connection with our essence, and therefore with God”. Only the tiny minds of mankind could attempt to put the multi-dimensional nature of God in a box! The beauty of God is that his very nature lives within us so we have to look no further than the divine particles that our body is made up of to know the true nature of God. No amount of trying to figure out what or who God is can change that direct connection we have with God.

  14. I’ve always found churches and religious buildings strange places to be as they felt cold empty and lacking of love, walking into a Universal Medicine presentation on The Way of The Livingness, the absolute opposite is true.

  15. This just goes to show how when we hold pictures about something it takes us away from the truth of what there is to feel and how in holding pictures (like pictures and images of what God is like) is a way of us wanting to control something supposedly outside of ourselves. The truth is, energy is flowing through us the whole time so having any form of ‘control’ is just an illusion. We cannot control the energy that passes through us consistently but we can choose what energy is flowing through us consistently by how we live, our movements and our choices. An incredibly valuable lesson for humanity brought through by Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine that I am continually learning.

  16. Why would God favour a particular person or group over anyone else or that each religion had their own version of God or Gods? This never made sense to me for all I could see was that we were all people with the same needs. It also never made sense that religions of those from God would do the things to each other that we have done for eons – abuse, fight, be violent, aggressive etc. I was at one stage caught up in the ‘religion is bad and if we got rid of religion it would all be better’, which was my own reaction to what I was seeing. Through what Serge Benhayon has presented I now understand much more deeply what is going on and because of this I now don’t blame religion, I have no need to do this.

  17. Michelle I can very much relate to your story and how you understood and felt God as a child and couldn’t feel that same connection in a church or religion. This was the same for me and looking back into my childhood I can feel how innate our relationship with God is, it’s so natural to feel God. As we leave that beautiful essence of who we are as children not only do we lose our connection to ourselves so too do we lose that connection to God. Mind-made versions of God (in a box) that exist in words, buildings, and beliefs and images never can touch the real experience of connection to God. If we watch children (before the world imposes on them to be other than they naturally are) they are mighty little teachers of true religion as they are totally connected to the wonder and magic of living connected to God and themselves.

  18. Many would no doubt remember the wonder and magic they experienced all around them when they were little. Let’s foster this connection in children so that it does not become a memory as they get older but remains as a forever living experience.

  19. As children we are full of inquisitiveness and have a natural wonderment and appreciation of the world around us – as adults it would serve us all well to reconnect back to that joy.

  20. Why do we put God in a box? Because we like to box everything, capture everything – some even capture butterflies and put them in a box. This, I feel, is a reaction to the stupendously beautiful flow of life that is naturally and universally a part of us all . . . but which many have forfeited in unwise choices. It takes some courage to surrender to the flow, but once experienced, there is nothing that comes close to it – certainly nothing we have kept in a box.

  21. So true Michelle, God does not belong in a box any more than we do as men or women. Our human minds cannot even begin to comprehend our own multidimensionality, so what hope do we have of ‘rationalising’ God. When we allow the intelligence of the body to be our guide and our measure, then we can begin to feel who He is, by feeling first who We are, as Sons of God.

  22. For the first time in many years I was lying on the grass, looking up into the blue sky with a few wispy clouds and considering the big, vast everything out there and just how astonishingly beautiful it was. Its something I used to do as a kid all the time – just marvel at how it all worked so perfectly…. how on earth (or in the stars) could we ever put this in a box?

  23. The ‘box’ is a symbol for our extreme need of security, and why do we have such an extreme need, a need which at base drives everything? Because we as a race have not been living in our essence, our truth, and the dire restlessness that we experience forces us to search for anything that will makes us feel safe. In reality he only true safety lies in ‘space’ not ‘boxed-on-ness’ – true safety is to abide in the truth and love of God and our own essence.

  24. I agree the organised religion feels like a form of control. It’s no wonder so many turn their backs to it as they can feel the disharmony of it. The unfortunate thing is that in doing that we often close ourselves off to the possibility that there is another way to be religious in the true sense. A way that has no rules except to hold you accountable to being yourself in full.

  25. With my understanding now, God in a box just seems so shut down, confined, contracted, controlled and restrictive; the exact opposite to who God truly is.

  26. History has shown us that organised religion does not work, hence perhaps it is high time we re-assessed it all rather than continue to repeat the old…

  27. This is so true. As I know what true religion is – experiencing God by being connected to my essence which is divine – it is obvious that organized religion is keeping us away from experiencing God.

  28. I am aware that I was also like this as a young girl full of ‘wonder’ I was at one with everything, what was physical was not different from what was energetic..I am as an adult returning to this place and it feels like home, it is to come back to the arms of God, knowing that I am of God and with God.

  29. In a box indeed, labelled and for many posted off to a corner of their experience that is reserved for hurt and judgement. I was like this about God in the past…this began to make no sense to me when I began to be open to what I felt within, the love, the warmth, the stillness, I sensed that this feeling was divine, it had no words, it was a feeling; I knew this to be God. I no longer box, life, God or anyone else; we are all one with the universe. Energy First.

  30. Thank you Michelle, but the humour of it all is that humans think and some believe that they can put GOD in a box, they think they can put GOD down to a book, the Bible or the Quran or the Torah and so on; oh how silly, are we humans.

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