Disclaimer: This blog may offend you.
“Hey Darby, I heard that you have gotten weirder?”, my former life group leader told me when we saw each other in McDonald’s. I wrote a blog post years ago about this transcendental spiritual experience I have had with a local shaman. People read it. The word “shaman” is a taboo to a lot of people.
A week after that, my dad confronted me because one of my aunts told him that I was into “New Agey” stuff. Again, it was because of that same blog post I wrote. My dad and I laughed it off because that same shaman was able to encourage my dad to drink green smoothies every day. Although I find this genuine concern from friends and family members funny, I stopped writing about spiritual stuff. I stopped writing about matters not accepted by traditional Christianity. I deleted the blog. It was an interesting blog with stories about tolerance and beautiful people with different belief systems.
I grew up in a Methodist church with equally colourful rituals and traditions like the esoteric faith systems of the east. I love bible studies, Sunday schools, choir practice, praise and worship and out of town youth gigs. After my college graduation, I travelled around Asia. I deconstructed my childhood beliefs and tried to construct it on my own again. Although I have great respect for my parents’ beliefs, something inside me wanted more. I needed to give myself the favour of at least personally search for something that will work for me.
Spirituality amazes me. One faith system would claim that they are the ONLY way. Others would say all faith systems complete each other. I believe the latter.
I remember when we were in Kuala Lumpur, a Muslim family from Iraq hosted us. My impressions of Iraq were Sadam Hussein, civil wars, terrorism and religious extremism. Anyway, the eldest son toured us around town the whole day. He was a vegetarian, a yogi and practices Islam. Quite a combination. While travelling, he showed us a picture of his mom who was picking flowers in South Iraq. “There are flowers in Iraq?”, I said to my ignorant self. When we finally arrived in his apartment, he introduced us to his mother and brother. His mom looks pretty. She prepared for us a bowl of fruits and told us something in Arabic. His son translated it. What she told us changed my view.
“Christianity, Judaism and Islam complete each other. One cannot survive without the other.”
Then she stood up, took a couple of traditional Iraqi scarves and gave them to us. “Give these to your mothers”, she said. I will never forget that moment. Whenever I hear religious intolerance in the news, I recall that memory.
I do not believe that God is a dull, monotonous deity with a long beard and a white robe. He loves variety. He is colourful and creative energy. That is why I have decided to recreate my old blog. This is a great blog topic and a topic that the world needs to hear.
To make things “weirder”, I will launch a new blog on a December New Moon, because why not? December is the name of my mom and this month is her birth month. For some people, the energy of the New Moon is good energy to start anew. To make it much weirder, according to some, it is the luckiest New Moon of the year.
I hope you enjoy this blog and please comment below regarding your thoughts. Peace!