What do Religion and God Truly Feel Like?

Growing up I have felt a lot of different things in the mainstream institutionalised religions of today – Christianity, Catholicism, Buddhism, Islam, Judaism etc. – like the energies and emotions in their buildings, the temperature, the colors, the people, the furniture, which all made me feel quite small and insignificant at that time. When I saw the other people in these religious places, they were seemingly not noticing these things, even though they were so obvious to me. This made me feel like what I felt was not true and confirmed the feelings of being small and alone.

I had the most physical experience with Catholic churches, attending funerals or visiting them whilst being on holiday, and these are some of those things I remember clearly:

They always felt cold
• They always felt very big and imposing
The colors were often dark and grey
• The seats would be very hard and uncomfortable
The place felt sad and heavy
• I did not like the music – the big church organs especially were very imposing and would make me feel sad
The priest would say very complicated words.

I know now I came to associate the word religion with these experiences of coldness, hardness, piety, contraction, hard work and most of all, feeling unworthy and guilty.

It wasn’t until I listened to a presentation by Serge Benhayon about the religion called The Way of The Livingness that I felt that there was another and true meaning for the word religion. What I formerly took on as religion was not true religion at all.

What I felt when attending these presentations by Serge Benhayon was totally different from my experiences with the Catholic churches.

I observed and felt:

• A warmth in the room physically, but also energetically
• Openness
• Joyfulness
• Simplicity
• Love and care
Responsibility
• Equality between the presenters and the audience
• Integrity lived in every moment of the day
• Seeing the importance of everything
• A feeling of not being judged and of being equal with everyone in the room – basically a feeling of coming home to myself and my whole family.

I am slowly coming to the understanding that God is in everything, yes in us too, and not above us judging, as I felt from my experiences as a child. I especially see and feel God in nature and the beautiful messages I receive. Now these messages are not letters as such but things like a beautiful leaf just landing before my feet, finding a tiny feather on my shirt, the sun making beautiful patterns and rays of light in the sky, a certain animal crossing my path just when I needed to see it and so on. I can also see God in my eyes when I look in the mirror and other people’s eyes when I meet them because, if I am honest, such beauty can only be divine.

True religion is about reconnecting with our essence, which is pure and divine. Then all the activities which re-connect us to this essence are religious. So this means that many things in our life can be religious and that these activities are not restricted to being in a church or praying.

For me, going for a walk can be religious when I am connecting more with myself, my essence and the beauty around me. Exercise for instance, is a way to connect to my body, to feel my body and how I feel at this time. Am I tired? Do I feel vitality? Do I feel how gorgeous I am? These honest questions support my connection with myself so for me, this is religion. Also a simple loving ritual and a rhythm I have developed that supports a lasting connection with myself, such as lighting a candle in the evening and some incense before going to bed so I can wind down for a goodnight’s sleep, is being religious. And I could go on…

This is what God feels like to me and it makes it clear to me that the mainstream institutionalised religions as mentioned above are not true religion as they did not support me to live in a truthful way with integrity – simply walking my talk, even when nobody is watching – nor did these mainstream religions support me to connect to myself and what I know is truth, love and joy. The only true religion I have found that offers this is The Way of The Livingness.

To me this shows that we should always discern if a word like religion or God is used and lived in its true meaning, or if it has been reinterpreted over time.

So, how does God feel to you?

By Lieke Campbell, Belgium

Further Reading:
Are We All Born Religious?
God. It’s a Science
Living a Religious Life & The Way of The Livingness

505 thoughts on “What do Religion and God Truly Feel Like?

  1. Hearing your experience of Church and Religion when you were growing up, I was thinking how many people would probably relate to you around the world, the coldness the hardness of the church etc. Equally though, I am sure that there are many people that have had warm and precious experiences of the Church. I am not saying I am one of those people but I think the important when we discuss different faiths to make sure we are remembering we are all equal brothers, no matter what house we think God lives in. The question I would like to ask, is this…. How do the people who run the services that take place in these Churches live? And how does that then effect those that congregate? For we can only truly support or guide another in tough situations when we have healed everything about the issue yourself. I have not seen many people in or outside of churches that are living in a way offers true support in this way for their congregation except Universal Medicine .

  2. When I connect with my inner heart I feel God there in the exquisite feeling of warmth that permeates every cell, when I am disconnected to my innermost, struggling with patterns of behaviours, God is still there within me and all around me, there is no place that I can go that God is not there.

  3. One of the gravest evils in this world is that we have been conditioned to believe that God is separate to us, that we are born sinners, and our life is about renouncing our sins through what we do. There is no further from the truth we can go. For as you have so beautifully shared Lieke, God is within us by virtue of the fact that we are the sparks of God, His eternal Sons, and it is through developing a loving relationship with our bodies that we can live in awareness of and connection to our Divine spark within, and to God in all that we do. We also come to understand the interconnectedness of us and all. In living this way we are living religion, where the greatest temple we can devote ourselves to, to be in union with God, is our bodies.

    1. Very well said Carola, God is within us all and as we are a direct replica of God we are all Gods here on Earth. Which is unthinkable when we look at society as a whole because of how far we have strayed away from this fact.

  4. I mean… Really… If we just simply tuned in in the most basic way we would feel the extraordinary dichotomy that is around us in so many ways, when the innate truth of our connection with God is so simple.

  5. When I allow myself to simply be me that is when I know God the most, because in truth I come from God and so to get to know God I simply have to get to know myself.

  6. True religion to does not feel like it can be judgemental or feel like you are being criticised in any way. That is what I have felt from a lot of organised religions that are in the world today. Whereas ‘The Way of The Livingness’ religion, is all about love, respect for yourself, for others, bringing service to all that you do, learning to feel the world not impose on you, but you to feel all of you, in the world.

  7. When you go to a ‘religious place’ they feel different in the body. A church and a synagogue for example feel different. The energy they project onto the body produces something different in them. In either case, what they do in us is not good at all. The question is: what is this telling us about how much they truly represent God? Wouldn’t a place where God is present be a place where you just feel an enormous expansion?

    1. “Wouldn’t a place where God is present be a place where you just feel an enormous expansion?” If we would ask more of these simple questions, much of life does not make sense and we would like to change things. But many don’t even are free so to speak to think these questions and see life just as the way it is, even though it could be so very different.

    2. I was in a Church not so long ago and really noticed everyone during the service that everyone participating were not themselves. There was a following of a ceremony, by rote. Everyone was on automatic pilot. When we went outside everyone was more themselves, coming together, more connected. It was like we had to be a certain way when contained within the building. Having not been in one for a while it really stood out.

  8. These places do feel cold, vacant, aloof – yet when I feel God in my house, in my body, he is warm, beautiful and intimate. No wonder I have struggled when I have been looking outside of me.

  9. What I love about what has been presented on religion by Serge Benhayon is that religion is not something separate from life, it is one and the same. So our every day moments, our every single movement is pat of that one and same religion. It is no different from you and me or from anyone and we can offer this to each other because we may have a moment together. There is such an exquisiteness to understanding religion in this way and returning it to its place of unity rather than of what we see very commonly in that of keeping us apart. Religion is about people, life how we are with ourselves, our movements, it is about feeling the world and who we are, letting each other in and letting God in, so that we may see where we are from and where we are returning to. When we look into the eyes of another God is there if we truly allow ourselves to see.

  10. I happened to be in a chapel this week attending the Harvest Thanksgiving which my children took part in. I sat and felt. What stood out for me was how condensed it made me feel. I shrunk! There was also an arrogance as though being a member of the chapel and going to chapel was of a greater importance than those who did not attend. What also came to light was the beauty of allowing myself to feel and become aware of what was happening to the best of my ability with no judgement bringing about a responsibility to the all and in doing so feeling the expansion, understanding, allowing and equalness within exposing that no matter where I am or what situation I find myself in the connection to God is always there when I listen and take heed to my movements and what is going on.

    1. I’ve also felt an arrogance and better than in the Church. This arrogance and putting what we do and what we are associated with as more important than others can be felt between sports teams, the private and public school systems, occupations, the so called upper class and lower class etc. Whenever we hold ourselves as separate to God we add to the pool of comparison and judgement that exists on Earth.

    1. And that is everywhere if we choose to see it! It made no sense growing up being told that God was only in the church, yet at the same time being told he is everywhere! It was quite contradicting messages I got. And as other people have said churches tend to be cold places, with hard seats – not loving at all for the body – which made me question is this really the house of God? Because I can’t feel no love here!!

  11. To live a religious life has only been possible for me since being introduced to The Way of the Livingness – a true religion in everyway.

  12. ‘simply walking my talk, even when nobody is watching’ For me this is key in a true religion, which is truly living what we say, without the need of hiding anything as everything in our life is coming back to Love-God

  13. God feels great to me, and it is that I have started to let him back into my life again. Till recently I was not aware how many limiting beliefs I had about God that were actually blocking my awareness of God. Beliefs like – God is outside me, God is bigger than me. I knew that God was there, but experiencing him – never.

  14. Personally, it is a pleasure and an absolute honour to claim myself as being religious and knowing God. He is within me, and I am within Him and I do not need another to give me access or permission to contact to that knowingness.

    1. Me too Rachael, it truly is an honour to know that we all have a direct innate connection to and with God. And that we are and can be a reflection of him on earth. And no one can ever take that away leaves me feeling very content and settled, knowing I do not need to strive to be anything nor need permission from anyone to live the God that I am, as we all are, here on earth.

  15. God, to me is a beholding love, a love that holds us all, an equal love that I feel emanate’s from with in and showers this beholding love every where we walk, if we so choose to hold ourselves in the equalness of the light of God.

  16. What I find most inspiring about The Way of The Livingness is that it is a way of living that deeply confirms who we already are, a return to being the Sons of God we innately are. As such in being our true selves our relationship with God is known and true religion is then naturally lived through our every day.

  17. This is such a great question – what does God truly feel like? And I totally agree with you, all I can recall from having been in religious buildings is the heavy seriousness, and how it was more about the place and whatever ceremony or ritual that was taking place at the time and I very much doubt if I had even contemplated a possibility of being connected with God by being there.

  18. I find it interesting to consider how we often may look outside of ourselves to confirm what we have already felt inside – like looking around to see if anyone else is sensing what we have rather than just staying connected with what we felt and not dismissing it….

  19. Just knowing the I have an essence, a place within me that is there all the time, that I can connect to, and that through that connection I am a loving, respectful, and expressive woman, is everything.

  20. Institutionalised religion has made it all about the things outside of ourselves, we have given our power away to these manmade so called religions when actually it is about the way we live, how we are with ourselves are we honouring the connection with our essence and that it can only be felt in our own body? My body is the temple of the Soul, no other building is needed and I can only reflect the divine when I come from a body I deeply care for and love.

  21. Everyday we get up and pore over the weather forecast to be sure we know what to expect and make sure we are dressed correctly. But it’s become clear to me we feel energy just as clearly as the sun on our skin. Truly as you show Lieke we should start to appreciate what we feel is going on – ‘today I’m going into work where there is jealousy, competition and a cloud of apathy’. If we did this I reckon our day to day would start to make a lot more sense.

  22. True religion is a whole body experience, it is felt in every particle of our bodies and not just confined to the head, and the more we reconnect to that which is true within ourselves the more access we have to that which is divine.

  23. As we grow up most of us lose our trust in knowing what is true and take on that which is not true which we think is true. Bring back our clairsentience and claim it in full in our lives for it is discernment through allowing ourselves to feel and sense our knowing that we come to see truth in our lives.

  24. When I would go into a Church growing up for a funeral or wedding I always felt like I didn’t belong, and I could see that in my family as well. There would be this awkwardness, like we didn’t know what to do and we needed to be really careful we didn’t show ourselves up. This reveals the energy within many religious establishments that there is an exclusiveness and separation between those that are of a certain institutionalised religion and those that are not. The ones that are, may feel a sense of belonging and confidence in their decision to be religious but the ones that believe that they are not religious because they don’t attend an institutionalised religion are left feeling less. The Way of The Livingness shines a much needed light back on the truth that we are all religious and sons of God, and that no one has had to teach us and that we have never needed to convince anyone of.

  25. I love your examples of what religion is and these can be anything – so simple. If everyone lived like this then the power would no longer be in the hands of the religious institutions and responsibility would be with people again. I am often at religious presentations as part of my work and it reminds me of when I was brought up for 12 years in a religious school where everyday we would be told what love is, as though we had to learn what love was because we didn’t know. This was not only disempowering but the complete opposite of what is true. We know love from our bodies. I’m now learning what true religion is too and I’m finding that it really is in everything and that my body and heart knows this inside out.

    1. Indeed Simone, we are naturally religious, we are born like that but this is not what the world wants us to be and until we understand the reality we have created life to be, the authorities like church will have its power over people because that’s what is being collectively chosen.

  26. I love this title too- ‘what does God and religion truly feel like?’ Your descriptions of the feel of these religious places says everything as it is how something feels rather than looks that is what counts. If you were to have asked me how I felt when sitting at religious ceremonies and school assemblies when I was younger then I would have said ‘small’ and like ‘I wasn’t good enough.’ I would have also said that it felt like something was being forced upon me.

  27. I grew up thinking that God judged us and punished us, and I knew this was a lie but by that time my back was truly turned on him and organised religion. I am now discovering what true religion is through The Way of the Livingness.

    1. Indeed Simone, but without discovering The Way of The Livingness we would have been in the same cold and disconnection as when in the institutionalized religions, as when turning your back to something, what are we then facing?

    2. No wonder so many people hate God! If we are taught as young children that he judges us and punishes us then who needs that in their life? Crazy that we give such a magnificent love some of the lowest human characteristics.

  28. “True religion is about reconnecting with our essence, which is pure and divine. Then all the activities which re-connect us to this essence are religious.” I love this Lieke. No need for a church or a priest – just simply reconnecting deeply back into who we truly are – our essence.

  29. At the moment I really feel God in the grace of my walk, the absolute power and joy to be me and in the reflection this allows which expresses the truth and love of a woman out to the world, absolutely precious….

  30. It is interesting Lieke, what you say about the building churches are housed in. In a way the buildings alone are already very imposing by the way they are constructed – the curves and the angles it is built in and the colours and decoration used. All is there to impose a way of being that we are not and we feel it. If we are open to this reality of life that only true religion is allowing us to see.

  31. What I love is that I find God in all the smaller moments, when I’m typing, or preparing food, or walking or even the in-between moments, when seemingly nothing is happening but actually these moments are full of magic.

  32. It always confused me why people would choose to sit in such a cold place once a week. It always gave me the impression that to get to God you had to suffer. Now I’ve seen and lived, that to get to God you don’t even need to go sit in a room, as you carry the warmth of His house within.

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