For a long time God was in my life, but only ever after the words ‘Oh’ and ‘My.’ Beyond that I had no interest whatsoever in having anything to do with him. God was dead to me and me to him, and that was that, or so I thought.
Having been brought up as a church-going Christian, and never really believing in the sandal and robe-wearing figure in the clouds in the first place, by the time I got to my twenties God was definitely not someone I wanted hanging around, judging me for all of my choices. And anyway, God for most people either didn’t exist, or was for people I’d judged as weirdos or oddballs who were religious, or for people of other faiths that I had no relationship with. Definitely not mainstream, definitely not cool, definitely not my thing.
As a child I prayed to God, hoping that he would save me from a long list of scary things in the world that I perceived might happen to me. I prayed that neither of my parents would get cancer and then when my Dad got cancer, I prayed desperately that he wouldn’t die. When he died I gave up, decided that believing in God was pointless, that God was a waste of time, and chucked my relationship with him on the bonfire.
While I felt like I didn’t have any relationship with God whatsoever, if I’d been really honest I would have felt how actually I resented and blamed God for everything that had gone wrong in the world, and for my Dad dying. If God was so benevolent, so all-knowing and caring, how could he allow such ills to happen? Could he not see that the world was a mess? Either God definitely didn’t exist, or he just didn’t care enough to bother sorting anything out.
Enter Universal Medicine in 2011. By this time I was getting a bit more real about my own choices, and own life, and feeling that there had to be more. None of the spiritual pursuits I’d dedicated myself to over the past few years had worked. I had a brilliant life from the outside – a great job, active social life, friends and relationships – and yet I was still in the same patterns, with the same feelings of “there has to be more to life than this.”
When I first realised that Universal Medicine presented a religion called The Way of The Livingness, my heart sank a bit. Here was this amazing organisation, with healing modalities that were really supporting me to finally let go of some old patterns, delivered by practitioners with an incredible amount of integrity and total dedication to living what they talked about. But religion –– really??
I was prepared to give healing a go, but decided to stay well clear of the religious bits. I still saw it as something a bit stale and weird, something cultish that I definitely didn’t want to be involved in. I was a respectable, responsible person, highly cautious and although I pretended for a while to be wild, I never really fooled anyone: I was the most risk-averse person I knew.
But I was intrigued: why did even the word ‘God’ cause such a strong reaction in me and why was I so anti-religion (apart from Buddhism which I’d deemed as cool and open enough to be legitimate)? I’d associated religion with being told what to do, being judged and constantly feeling guilty for doing something wrong. Yet there was I, judging religion and anyone who had anything to do with it.
When I came to understand the word ‘religion’ as having a relationship with myself, things started to shift. If the word ‘religion’ means to re-bind, to re-establish a relationship with the inner part of one’s self – the Soul, that quiet voice that always knows how we are to live and the choices that are in our best interests but that we so often override – then why would I not want a relationship with that one thing that knows me inside out, and knows how to live truly and honestly? How to live more of me, to be more comfortable in my own skin, more open and less constricted by all the ways of being that I know are not me – are we not all wanting this?
Slowly I saw that my perceptions of religion and God were based on pictures and perceptions that were totally false and so far away from what religion and God are actually about. I came to understand that The Way of The Livingness is not anyone else’s way, but mine. It’s not a dictation from Universal Medicine or anyone else about what to do or how to do it. It’s not even about using the phrase ‘The Way of The Livingness.’ It’s simply a phrase used to describe how and why you live your life that is so personal to you. It’s like following your own bespoke path that has everything you need on it to evolve and grow, at the precise timing. You do your thing, and I’ll do mine, and together we learn and grow.
It’s through our living way, i.e. how we do life, that we access God. Now that’s a big statement. To have gone from perceiving God as some bearded, sandal and robe clad figure in the sky, probably with a clipboard and pen, taking notes of all of my perceived failings for the record card and judgment day when I die, to actually feeling that maybe, that’s not it, has been a process. But through connecting more to my body instead of from my head, I’ve felt that there is something more to life than the lives most of us are living and how we’ve been taught what life is.
We are all so naturally connected to one another, to nature and the entire universe. I started to feel that how I live has an effect on others – even the simplest of movements are felt by others around me, near and far. When I’m off in my head, I’m temporarily oblivious to anything beyond myself, but when I’m connected to what I can feel in my body, there’s a solidity, and a space, and an absolute knowing that I’m part of something much bigger than myself. Call it God, the Universe or the stars: we’re all part of a multi-dimensional life, even if we don’t realise it or want to be.
I’ve started to experience as a physical sensation how naturally connected we are to one another – how connecting with others is our natural way of being, and to not do this, to not allow ourselves to love ourselves and others, to open up and connect, takes a lot of energy and drains us.
We’re all in this together, like it or not, and we all have the same equal access to our natural way of living and being. God is equal to us, within us and around us. God backs us all the way, and allows us to make all our own choices, with no judgment. We are so endlessly supported – we just have to allow ourselves the space to feel and know it, from within.
“If you do not make yourself equal to God, you cannot understand God.”
[Corpus Hermeticum 11:20 (1)]
By Bryony, UK
1. Unimed Living. (2018). Hermes | Unimed Living. [online] Available at: http://www.unimedliving.com/ageless-wisdom/the-lineage/hermes.html [Accessed 16 Aug. 2018].