Monday, February 05, 2007
I believe in the absurd
Yesterday, at church, my mind drifted. I wonder if the man to my left noticed when I sang "thee" instead of "you" just now? and Does that woman have cancer or does she like the shaved-head look? Meanwhile the priests wandered around in the alter, swinging things and burning things and generally rearranging objects. I tried stand straight and wondered what my hair looked like from behind.
And then we came to the creed. I tried to concentrate just the tiniest bit. I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth and all things visible and invisible...
And, as happens once in a great while, a joyful little tingling accompanied my words. Like the sudden resurgence of a crush you thought was well over, or the way a joke you've heard too many times to think is funny manages to make you laugh. You think "this is absurd" and yet you blush or break into laughter. I stood there repeating for the millionth time "... Son of God, the only-begotten, begotten of the Father before all ages, Light of Light, true God of true God, begotten, not made, of one essence with the Father..." And I think, It's ridiculous that I believe this. And it makes me sort of joyful that I believe something when it's utterly ridiculous.
Later that night on the phone, a friend was quizzing me about my faith, particularly my understanding of animism and how I understand it given faith in one Metagod--the creed's Father Almighty. I was hard-pressed to say that I believed God wasn't perhaps a stone or a river god, or my friend on the other end of the line. Maybe She's the shaved-headed woman at church. I don't know what I believe. It's absurd.
I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth... and I smile.