Bursts of Religiosity Happen; Listen to Them

Some will say that we live in a Godless world.

Some will say there is no God.

These mean two different things in my mind.

“Godless world”

This implies there is negativity in this world

That the absence of God is causing or contributing to the world

“No God”

Simple enough, valid statement

There are those who do not believe in God

One can be part of a belief system,

Though in my mind,

One is said with the weight of mountains,

A Godless world carries with it the unimaginable fear in the absence of belief,

Because many who say this have lost something.

I lost something,

I have said this statement before.

It is not that I never believed in God,

But I have felt an absence because I did,

I do,

But I didn’t at one time.

I felt this darkness of losing what gave me strength envelop me,

A Godless world.

You do not need to believe in God to fear these words.

You do not need to believe in God to have bursts of religiosity either.

“Religiosity”

What a wonderful phrase

Strong religious beliefs or feelings.

Before you reject my words, hear me out!

We as humans approach religion from endless corners of the world,

One does not have to adhere to a religion in order to appreciate them,

One does have to agree with religion to still draw inspiration, draw strength from them.

Tree of Life

October 27

The world changed on this day.

The world of Judaism changed on this day.

My world of Judaism changed on this day.

My Judaism changed.

I lost it.

I lost it meaning I had it, I believed in it, I listened to it,

I took in the words of prayer willingly until my young body could no longer bear the weight of 11 lives on my heart.

Until my soul could no longer handle the fear of what to me turned into a dark,

Bleak,

Empty,

Godless world.

Days are filled with strength.

Days are filled with worry.

And between those feelings is when that feeling I sought out for,

The feeling I had been lacking that once had a hold on me,

The feeling of spirituality came back.

 

 

Religion and spirituality are not what propels everybody’s lives.

I did not grow up with a belief in God.

My belief in God, my personal spirituality came to me in time because I wanted it to.

My religiosity that goes beyond the boundaries of words,

I took it back.

I took it back through buying a new siddur (prayer book) + Tehillim (Book of Psalms)

20% off on Black Friday

I went to synagogue every week when home,

The only force propelling me is my own yearning

Those kids forced to go by their parents cannot fathom this

I say a Psalm every day,

Well, almost every day,

But when I do engage with Judaism in this way it is more than what ‘meditative’ describes.

I learn about Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam

I engage with other religions because this enhances my own.

I ask why prayer beads are not used in Judaism while they are in others,

I ask why Buddhism and Judaism seem so compatible,

I ask how Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam can influence my spirituality.

I get angry when college students feel it necessary to reject religion while not understanding,

Your beliefs are valid but not at the expense of others.

I feel at home when I pray,

Finally,

Home.

 

 

My home is within my mind,

Within my Judaism,

Within the moment I sat in the library at Brandeis and closed my eyes, took a deep breath in,

I felt calm.

I felt peaceful.

I felt at home within my religion,

I felt at home within my soul, nafshi (my spirit, my soul)

I am pulled towards the words of prayer in any language even if I pray in Hebrew.

I lost this pull but I brought it back,

I brought it back realizing my life would not be the same without it,

Without these bursts of spirituality,

I never felt it one month after Tree of Life,

Now I know it as an everyday experience.

My mental health I fight for,

My religion I fight for,

My personal way I connect to tefillah, to prayer,

My personal way I connect to religion, to spirituality, to those moments where doubt is nonexistent,

I fight for my life.

I fight for me.

I listen to these bursts of spirituality.

Listen to yours in whatever way they come.

 

There are many reasons to believe we live in a Godless,

And yet with all those ungodly acts,

Within that darkness,

It is possible to find your light.

Find your hope.

Find meaning in a life that allows Tree of Life to now be more than a synagogue,

Find meaning in a life where guns kill and hugs heal.

Find meaning for yourself don’t do it for anybody else.

I find meaning in the depths of all of this.

This is my human experience,

This is my life I choose to live in peace,

In prayer,

In meditation,

In mindfulness,

In moments.

 

Listen.