My dear friends...
Sometimes I get notes from people wondering, first, if there even is a "God," and, second, if there is a God, what God wants.
Many humans have been told that What God Wants is for life to be a school, a place of learning, a time of testing, a brief and precious opportunity to migrate the soul back to heaven, back to God, whence it came.
Many humans have also been told that it's when life ends that the real joy begins. All of life should be considered a prelude, a forerunner, a platform upon which is built the soul's experience of eternity. Life should therefore be led with an eye toward the Afterlife, for what is earned now will be experienced forever.
Most humans also believe that What God Wants is for people to understand that life consists of what people can see, hear, taste, touch and smell-and nothing more.
One result of this teaching: Humans believe that life is not easy, nor is it supposed to be. It's a constant struggle. In this struggle, anything other than what is perceived by the five senses is considered "supernatural" or "occult" and falls, therefore, into the category of "trafficking with the Devil" and "the work of Satan."
Humans are struggling to get back to God, and into God's good graces. They are struggling to get back home. This is what life is about. It's about the struggle of the soul, living within the body, to get back home, to return to God, from Whom it has been separated.
Most people of religious persuasion focus heavily on Heaven and Hell. Those who believe that "getting to Heaven" is the ultimate Purpose of Life, and who truly and fervently believe that they can guarantee their entrance into Heaven by doing certain things while on earth, will, of course, seek to do those things.
They'll make sure that their sins are confessed regularly, and that their absolutions are up to date, so that if they die suddenly their soul will be ready for Judgment Day. They'll fast for hours, days, or weeks at a time, travel on pilgrimages to distant holy places, go to church or temple or mosque or synagogue every week without fail, tithe 10% of their income, eat or not eat certain foods, wear or not wear certain clothing, say or not say certain words, and engage in all manner of rites and rituals.
They'll obey the rules of their religion, honor the customs of their faith tradition, and follow the instructions of their spiritual leaders in order to demonstrate to God that they are a worthy person, so that a place will be reserved for them in Paradise.
If they are distressed enough and oppressed enough and unhappy enough, some humans will even end their own lives and kill other people-including the totally innocent and the absolutely unsuspecting-for the promise of a reward in heaven.
(If that promised reward happens to be 72 black-eyed virgins with whom to spend all of eternity, and if the humans in question happen to be 18 to 30-year-old men with little future and a dust-laden, poverty stricken, injustice-filled present, the chances of their making such an extraordinarily destructive decision will increase tenfold.)
They'll do this because they believe this is What God Wants.
But is it?
I believe that one of the most important books ever given to me was the text, What God Wants. If you have not read this little book in a while, it might be wonderful to give it another look as we end this seventh month of the year.
In it we are told that when we really understand what God wants," humans will know that the answer is: nothing. Nothing at all. How could God want anything when God has, and IS, everything God could possibly want?
When we know this, we will understand that life is not a school, neither is it a time of testing. If God wants nothing, there is no reason for a test. If humans are One with God, there is nothing to learn, there is only to remember what has been forgotten.
Humans will also understand that life is not an ordeal during which the soul struggles to get back to God, but rather, is an ongoing process by which the soul seeks to know God, then to grow, to expand, and to experience more of what it is. It will also be clear that this process, called evolution, never ends, but is experienced by the soul everlastingly, at different levels and in different life forms.
Humans will also understand that life is not limited to what can be perceived by the five senses, but is far wider in scope and deeper in dimension than humans at first imagined or have ever been told by religion.
One result of this teaching: Much more attention will be paid to what is not perceived by the five senses, and this will be the basis of a new understanding of life and how it might be most joyfully and wonderfully experienced.
Life will not be lived with an eye toward the Afterlife, but with an eye toward what is being created, expressed, and experienced at many levels of perception in the Holy Moment of Now. Humans will become increasingly aware that "now" is The Only Time There Is.
Life will not be experienced as a struggle or as an effort to "get back home" to God, but rather, as a free-flowing expression of one's intrinsic nature, which is unlimited and divine.
"Getting to heaven" will no longer be the ultimate purpose in life. Creating heaven wherever you are will be seen as the prime objective. To experience this, people will not have to confess any sins or fast during daylight hours or travel on pilgrimages or go to places of worship weekly or tithe regularly or perform any particular ritual or act-although they may choose to do any of these things if it pleases them, or helps to remind them of who they are in relationship to God, or assists them in staying connected with their purpose.
Because of their deeper understanding and rich personal experience of life as a unified field, for people everywhere life itself will become the prime value, and the core around which all spiritual understanding and expression revolves.
We do not know how much longer our own life will go on. Our time on this planet could be over tomorrow. Because this is so, I want, for my part, to use every available moment, every minute, every second, to move as richly as I can, as fully as I can, into the highest expression of which I am capable of the greatest vision ever I held about who I am.
I want to demonstrate God on earth, in me, through me, as me. Even if there is no "God," even if I'm "making it all up," can there be a better way to live; a more purposeful, nicer way to move through the days and nights of one's existence?
So today, each moment, with each decision about what I shall eat, what I shall wear, what I shall think, what I shall say, what I shall do-I am going to try to ask myself: If God where here right now, working in me, through me, as me, what would God do now?
Want to join me in the experiment?
Love and Hugs,
© 2019 ReCreation Foundation - http://www.cwg.org - Neale Donald Walsch is a modern day spiritual messenger whose words continue to touch the world in profound ways. His With God series of books has been translated into 27 languages, touching millions of lives and inspiring important changes in their day-to-day lives.