As promised, your author is posting the entire book as it is edited. I pray people who have lost faith, or had their beliefs compromised by Faux science and secular diatribes find evidence and proof that helps them restore the ingredients missing in their conclusions. You were right to have suspicions about everything - that is the innate curiosity your soul's creator, your consciousness, shared with you.
NO GOOD DEED GOES UNPUNISHED,
SOME LESSONS REQUIRE A BEATING.
”NO MAN KNOWS HOW BAD HE IS UNTIL HE TRIES, VERY HARD, TO BE GOOD!”
First comes the discharge, usually made at an unanticipated and embarrassing place and time without concern for social standards or convenience. The incremental stripping away of modesty and convention ensues. That is followed by unbearable cramps, muscle contractions, and contortions that rack the body. These regularly last hours, sometime days. Sweat and screams adorn and punctuate the writhing, primal spectacle. Complete agony and a marked absence of conscious control precede a copious spilling of blood. Visceral material next appears. Tethered to the host organism by a twitching, veined umbilicus, an organism encased in a slick, opaque membrane sack emerges. Lastly, a dark, gelatinous, flattened orb displays, ending another animal’s reproductive cycle. Silence bears heavily upon the event’s conclusion, and any others present…
Interrupting the exhaustion and quiet, a faint, plaintiff, wail sounds and increases in volume. The consciousness enters an infant indiscriminately adorned with smeared blood and albumin curds buried in epidermal crevasses. The infant’s eyes open to first view its surroundings. The light of life displays with unmistakable intensity and purpose. The eyes dart, and scan, as the infant perceives other senses – cold, noise, uncertainty… and the first fears. The eye’s use and purpose is instantaneously and intuitively comprehended. They collect information. Memory is experienced an instant later. A soul is implanted. The eyes are more than windows of the soul. In combination with other sensory organs, and conscious deliberations, sight adds to the soul’s content.
Birth clearly exposes the duality of man – an animal organism possessing a divine consciousness, and a life force set apart by its ability to examine, analyze, and choose. The pitiful disgrace of instinct opposes the critical, reasoned intellect. A soul must be prepared – comforted and nurtured, instructed in the virtues of obedience and excellence. The soul and the intellect are mutually synonymous but serve two different aspects of our consciousness. Just as the intellect withers in want of information, so to does the soul perish when deprived its divine nourishment. The content of a consciousness is what God analyzes to discern the soul’s eligibility and fitness for the environment present in the afterlife.
God is an emotional being. Scriptures are littered with examples of God’s emotional tirades and compassion. God wants his children home. As a father, God would naturally forgive us all, but the physical composition of the afterlife demands specificity of content and comprehensive credibility for a soul to enter and exist there. The separation of parent from offspring during earthly life shapes both man and God. A reunited family defines and satisfies his paternal passions. Some souls will prove fit for exaltation. Others will need remedial tasking, and an extended separation from the Almighty. To qualify for the afterlife, man must master himself. Developmental segregation - based upon mankind’s variety of incompatible behaviors and choices, appears inevitable.
C.S. Lewis provided a precise rendering of the process in Mere Christianity:
“The battle is between faith and reason on one side and emotion and imagination on the other. There will come a moment when there is bad news, or he (man) is in trouble, or is living among a lot of other people who do not believe it, and all at once his emotions will rise up and carry out a sort of blitz on his belief. Or else there will come a moment when he wants a woman, or wants to tell a lie, or feels very pleased with himself, or sees a chance of making a little money in some way that is not perfectly fair: some moment, in fact, at which it would be very convenient if Christianity were not true. And once again his wishes and desires will carry out a blitz. I am not talking of moments at which any real new reasons against Christianity turn up. Those have to be faced and that is a different matter. I am talking about moments where a mere mood rises up against it. No man knows how bad he is till he has tried very hard to be good.”
An innate moral code, instilled in each of us, is present from birth. An intimate sense of right and wrong is preprogrammed and omnipresent early in life. A physical sensation, a reaction to the decision taken and its compliance with the internal code, confirms or condones the choice made in the consciousness. Man knows good from evil at birth. Life experiences either erode or sustain the moral code. Inevitably, earthly instruction challenges morality and distills the destructive options available with impulse and instinct. Fortunately, man was provided a superior mechanism to subdue his animal instincts. Obedient, or Intellectual? Both - Free Will and reason are resident in man. Successfully rendering a marriage of the two is the object of the earthly exercise.
Animals act when moved by instinct, known threats, or when urgings of the flesh and procreation prompt it. Higher ordered animals can occasionally behave as though a deliberative conscious order motivates them. Their lives are also God’s product, but man is uniquely different. Man’s soul demarcates. It provides clear evidence his relationship with the divine sire of that soul is intimate and distinctive. Deliberation, analysis and choice (based upon information accrued) are the qualities which delineate man. Free Will and reason affords Man the ability to subordinate his instinct and impulse to gain and exert self control predicate access to the afterlife. Commandments are the operator’s manual. Faith is a uniquely important supplemental ingredient.
Faith is a cumbersome (and fleeting) transitory, occasionally illusory and irrational, belief in unseen truths and entities. Sensory input, past experiences, and internal deliberations are anathema to faith, unless faith is perpetually protected and preserved. Faith is a component of the soul whose wellbeing requires regular feedings. Faith is an organism – like, and within man. The content, the substance of the soul, is not universal, conclusive, or equitably dispersed throughout mankind. The inimitable properties of each soul demand a peculiar attention paid to it. Man’s charge in this life is confronting his environment and preparing his soul’s fitness for the afterlife environment.
This composition on Uncertainty will explore the temporal and physical properties, and the divine aspects and conflicts in that journey. Within this composition the creation, refinement, and labors of the human soul are examined theoretically, philosophically, and practically - with an intention of providing weak willed souls evidence that recalls, improves, or sustains their faith and rational beliefs. The content of the consciousness/soul is examined in detail. Environment invariably shapes a consciousness - some better than others. Some pose a perpetual threat to the soul’s wellbeing. Company does too.
The content of a soul is accumulated from experience, thought, and choice. Clinical and empirical information are analyzed in a new perspective - rationally, objectively. Those are sustained using scientific rigor, method, and evidence. Interpretations and conclusions are offered using that novel, eternal perspective. Perspective is a powerful influence. Perspective made uncertainty certain. Uncertainty is a perplexing and unresolved condition that most people want explained or eliminated from their lives. Gaining control in their lives is usually the reason. That version of uncertainty is only part of this study. Quantum physics has an entire quadrant dedicated to uncertainty – and the challenges it presents in that discipline, and other interpretations. The uncertainty Death expounds is causal for numerous sensory reactions that brew suspicions, conflicts, and the ancillary deliberations and behaviors chosen in life.
That presented a problem to me. Portions of my mind no longer operate rationally. My consciousness is damaged. A motorcycle accident in my late teens brought consequences I was not prepared to negotiate. Surgeons worked 8 hours repairing the depressed skull fracture on the frontal lobe of my brain. I twice died on the operating table. The accident, and the subsequent mental and physical trauma, bred a litany of incidental experiences that inevitably led to my believing nothing is reliable or predictable. Certain projective mental functions are permanently damaged – Faith acutely so. The attending neurosurgeon correctly predicted personality changes might arise. My difficulties deliberating are further complicated with the misfortunes and challenges an “absent parent” instills in a child. God is particularly capricious and nonchalant in my experiences. The term Absent Parent is appropriate. His lack of attention and intimate intervention consistently imparted misery and despair into my life. My chosen behaviors, sans the Almighty’s influence, inured the unorthodox and destructive opinions I came to prefer. The incongruence of my consciousness, and unintended, collateral consequences, combined with Murphy’s Law to guarantee an uncertainty of outcomes prevailed - no matter what I did; or didn’t do. Fear of uncertainty was the constant companion relied upon to calculate and coordinate life’s conflicts, contradictions, and the considerable confusion spawned.
Ostensibly, my personal history is not necessarily unique. It lacks a magnificent drama to elicit intrigue or curry sympathy. In a Hollywood context, my life has no critical mass – no complex and profound cycle of self-destruction, punctuated with monumental struggles and successes overcoming adversity against considerable odds. Pride, arrogance, and fear, were the sole motivations. I made my bed with choices. Nothing infers an intimate interaction with the Almighty - where miraculous intervention preserved me. There are no intriguing details describing spectacular events that inspire a wayward soul to seek reconciliation with an omnipotent and charitable God...
However, if the person looking recognizes or shares the conflicts presented, and grows curious to learn if the content is interesting or beneficial to them, the experiences presented here may inspire examination and prove their usefulness. Therein lies one majestic struggle present in all lives. We all rightly consider our lives in extraordinary terms. It’s our life! It’s extremely important – if only to us. There are motivations, contentions, failures, successes, celebrations and unresolved matters and truths we all share. Learning from each other is an example of love and respect for our Father who commanded we reserve and express charity towards one another. How can we love, if we fail to investigate our earthly companions?
Too much grief, too many options, and, the ubiquitous uncertainty present in the divine plan of salvation, adulterated my perceptions and conclusions so thoroughly it unexpectedly inspired an intimate investigation of the potential of eternal life. In my convoluted consciousness, God betrayed me twice. Each betrayal instigated anxiety, anger, and enmity. Providing the Almighty another opportunity to disappoint me, or hurt my children, was irresponsible and ignorant in that perspective. God became an adversary. The despicable aspect of our “relationship” was the emotional predicament God’s uncertainty placed in my life. Invalidating God, and removing him from consideration - to preserve my sanity, became a necessary imperative. Sustaining the fragile and circumspect version of in-sanity God’s absence inspired, and protecting my progeny (our children) from his perilous disregard, were obligations the Almighty’s cynical compassion predicated thirty years earlier - then revisited in apparent spite.
The First Betrayal:
The initial break with God came after a motorcycle accident. The circumstance of the accident presented a dilemma. It occurred at the chapel where I attended seminary classes before school each morning. Religion was then a positive and comprehensive influence in my life. Attending church was a welcomed daily event. The accident confused, then, terrified me. The question of why God hadn’t protected me (while I dutifully obeyed his commandments) evolved into an emotional impasse, distorted by primordial fear. God’s lack of intervention, and obvious absence of concern, seeded questions and bred doubts. God didn’t bother to conduct his parental responsibilities congruent with the commandments he issued mankind either. That reality cast a net of uncertainty that caught my attention and altered beliefs. Doubts of God’s existence entered my mind. The absent and unreliable parent aspects compounded my suspicions. As I investigated scientific evidence on the validity of God’s existence, and encountered an abundance of facts and data indicating God didn’t, could not, exist, it contorted my perceptions and missing faith. The information discovered simultaneously and methodically discredited the content in Christian scriptures. The profuse secular content in science and society left only one conclusion. God was an artifice used to control human behaviors. As the contradictions mounted, sacred religious convictions imploded. Uncertainty intensified. Nothing I learned from secular and scientific analysis provided security. Nor did it calm the fears and doubt the accident introduced. My anger towards God raged with each new revelation – as did my interpretations of religion. The latent uncertainty in various theological topics (including an afterlife promise) provided religion a cudgel to compel compliance. Worship and belief in God was a punitive, perfunctory preoccupation that diminished life’s options and man’s instinctual desires.
After I’d healed physically, a subsequent discussion with my neurosurgeon aggravated the uncertainty and fear. The surgeon wouldn’t (or couldn’t) provide me a positive prognosis. My life span was apparently another casualty in the accident. The scope of injury; a depressed skull fracture; the location (frontal lobe); brain surgery; and installing a plate in my skull - summed to an ambiguous end. He flatly stated I was lucky to be alive… very lucky. The surgeon’s facial expressions spoke a truth his words didn’t utter during his terse, Latin laced, ad hominem prognosis. He detailed the surgery; then added a litany of potential, related “events” that now threatened my life. The collision permanently conveyed several adverse outcomes. A frustrated expression preceded the surgeon’s admitting an undiagnosed and unanticipated malaise might also suddenly terminate my life functions. Indeterminate was the clinical term he voiced describing my life’s duration and options.
The new circumstances framing my life – an assortment of unpredictable, perilous predicaments, made the empirical, uncertain prognosis appropriate. My head, and the polymer plate affixed within, tried, unsuccessfully, to deflect the news. A fear of Death assumed a permanent, preeminent, status – A Priori. Not knowing what might initiate one of the lethal outcomes proposed; how it might occur, or if a simple, innocent choice might inadvertently direct Death to claim another soul, MINE! That realization intensified my definition of fear and the trepidation that coerced my contemplating it. My mind went empty… save an obsessive focus on Death that puckered my “pride” and violated my masculinity. As days passed, the fear of Death stalking me expanded. It infected my thoughts. Planning ahead, contingency deliberations, and simple daydreams of pleasant aspiration, faded - then disappeared entirely. Fear consumed me.
I suspected time was running out. With nothing to count on, or plan for, I pledged to taste sin and experience forbidden pleasures before Death arrived. I started smoking. That brought me in contact with new associates at school who religiously gathered between classes, behind a dumpster, to smoke. Inexplicably, they belonged to the brainiac crowd. They were kids from wealthy, professional families, whose parents demanded academic success. A mutual interest in esoteric studies and commitment to unrestrained indulgence defined the collective ambitions of that era’s youth. I think some of my new associates enjoyed my innocence and saw an opportunity to initiate and adulterate me. They invited me to indulge behaviors and consider activities my religious upbringing forbade. I accepted the invitation. Why not? Obeying commandments didn’t improve my life. I could die any day; and never know why. Death became an unavoidable, incessant, companion. Smoking pot, drinking alcohol (and skipping class) became daily rituals I perfected. My grades and attendance suffered. I didn’t care. Getting back at God by adopting rebellious behaviors provided the distraction needed to stabilize or momentarily escape my fear, and to indulge a new belief set - Pantheism. It’s like Christianity; only nature is responsible for everything. That philosophy was an easy and practical fit. I was not satisfied with my cursory defamation of God. I sought out to discredit every aspect of a relationship that once provided me comfort and direction.
Christianity’s Bible presented numerous problems from the Pantheist’s perspective. Some information was disputable, and some was patently false. Several significant events and timelines were glaringly inaccurate – according to science’s reckoning. Much of the text was preposterous. To be kind, the Bible contained numerous inconsistencies and contradictions. Disturbingly, comparing religious tenets with scientific data presented irresolvable contradictions and disproven conjectures. The troubling aspect was the secular and tangible evidence science produced (that many intellectuals term irrefutable) religion overtly rejected. Collectively, Christianity’s reluctance to accept the ample and obvious information refuting scriptural conclusions, and dogma, reconfirmed the rational conclusions, and negative opinions, and a lucid mind takes on the topic of God. Religion’s veracity and believability were tied to the same misguided interpretations. God wasn’t concerned about me. His absence when I most needed him proved it. Eliminating religion from my life was a necessary consequence of God’s betrayal. Anger and fear made certain no other options were considered.
Replacing a life-long commitment to God, and attendant religious obligations, meant embracing a new ideology vigorously. Concluding God is a myth was a considerate opinion, supported with legitimate, and copious, academic and secular evidence. The information produced in my studies left few areas to debate. Religion was concluded a fundamentally dishonest exercise that required a person fund, and follow, an organization that employed disingenuous, hypocritical leadership. Religion additionally mandated assuming numerous disputable, and many scientifically impossible, beliefs. Pantheism liberated me and enabled exploration of life unrestrained. When death came to claim me, I would be drenched with experiences that provided me pleasure and sated my curiosity. If the near death experience in surgery proved anything, it was obeying commandments didn’t assure God’s beneficence. Belief in God required denying man natural, instinctual behaviors and desires. If no one was harmed, what was the point of abstinence? Engaging degenerate desires quickly diminished any interest or recollection of religion.
The Second Betrayal:
Adapting to another death brought new struggles. Each day the children’s expressions bore witness to the tragedy and simultaneously condemned my inadequacies. A visibly vacant attention and a chronic, disturbing, disorientation conveyed their shuttered countenance of suffering. Reddened, bleary eyes regularly acknowledged an indifferent world - lost and betrayed. Gone were the dreams and hopes, whispered promises (actualized in sublime confidence) within a cradled consciousness; nestled against the familiar scent and security of a bosom where they’d slept serenely since infancy. The solemn sanctuary, where body and soul coalesced and restored, was a premature collateral casualty. Death abruptly absconded the life that bore them - condemning their innocence and aspirations.
I saw my children negotiating life anxious - angry or ambivalent - depending upon the day. Containing the grief and mitigating the maniacal impulses that rise up, confuse and frustrate a mind too young to conceive the consequence the eradication of their maternal resource creates. These debilitating realities have no resolution that does not extend or compound the damage done. Emotional uncertainty lingered like a heavy shroud, artificially depressing the natural expressions of childhood – joy, anticipation, and contentment. Future prospects are devoid of meaningful substance and absent the traditional passions of youth; which bolster the vigor and fortitude necessary to participate fully in the amputated remnants of their lives. It was a radical amputation.
The impact of the loss upon my children inexorably altered my spiritual continuity. God was put away for safekeeping. He’d done enough. I needed time to re-establish a new normal in our existence, regain my composure, and eventually find an opportunity to properly vent the mounting fury and unrequited rage God’s actions imparted. My family went on a spiritual “disability”.
Life morphed into a stop frame reality - part slow motion; where the circumstances were exposed in ominous detail, and part strobe; that flashed an acutely repulsive retrospective, which blurred coherent preparations. Emotionally deformed, unable to adequately attend to the children’s daily eruptions, and the firm’s operational emergencies, forced an intimate confrontation with my incompetence. New concerns and fears developed to ally with death’s dirge – to menace more comprehensively and purloin additional portions of the crippled adventure that was our family life. I was unable to console my children’s emotional needs, adequately. My sex also conspired to spoil efforts attempting to administer a tender touch and passion. I sought female advice and worked to adorn our home with accouterments commonly found in a two-parent house. Each holiday was celebrated effusively with an abundance of decorations. These moderately improved my children’s attitudes and dulled the ache remembering past holidays contained. The enthusiasm to feign a journeyman’s effort in this regard permanently passed away when I learned my son’s friends were asking if I was Gay. Negotiating both parental roles was another opportunity to cement frustration and provide content for my dismissing the Almighty.
Time eventually diminished the discomfort of our loss. Each pendulum sweep of time’s clock eroded miniscule portions of memory. Each chime initially reminded, but, in concert with the pendulum, evolved to insulate recollections - until forgetting brought an unanticipated, and more acute form of grief – Guilt! Death is an intimidating and relentless companion who requires considerable attention. About the time you grow comfortable in his presence, he reveals a new aspect of his persona that agitates an existing, or initiates an unfamiliar, pain or fear. Simultaneously, the mental container where I placed God grew covered in dust from an absence of attention and my unwillingness to invite a conversation. I’d never truly be prepared to invite his presence in my life again, or hear his answers on the death.
Mending the fears and incongruence generated by the death of my wife, the mother of my children, provoked this Uncertainty study. Few events in life contain the reach to invade the tender, instinctual affections, bound in blood and parental obligation, with a brutal indifference that irreparably destroys virtue and the child possessing it. Watching Death abuse my children was a brutal, emasculating experience that permanently altered many perspectives. Death’s intrusion destroyed the specious elements of faith I’d managed to assemble over the years, and that compounded the difficulties a damaged consciousness imparted. Death’s torment first exacerbated, then nurtured, the bi-polar anxieties that followed.
The above accurately defined my life and attitude when I initiated the study of uncertainty. In no way, was I motivated to reconcile with God or find evidence that supported his existence. An opposite objective inspired me. The circumstances that prompted the study also presented a dubious dichotomy. The objective of the study conflicted with my personal philosophy, and disposition of conscience. It was compromised from the start. I’d previously adapted to the uncertainty of life - and certainty of no afterlife. Even if God was real, I wasn’t eligible for his favor. I’d indulged to excess and more… much more, and more often than was acceptable according to scriptures.
The study of Uncertainty spanned a few of years and eventually included: generic scientific protocols and reference standards, the disciplines of quantum and classic physics, cosmology, biology, organized religions and conventional theological tenets and scriptures, the Apocrypha, Western European and US history, social constructs, geo-political ideologies, and, individual motivations, decision taking, and the resulting behaviors. These disciplines combine to provide comprehensive, relevant information that influences views on the concept of God – individual and societal.
Personal and professional responsibilities postponed assembling the information discovered until a decade later. My ability to compile the study required a significant change of circumstances that afforded me time and indulged the emotional instability finishing the work entailed. A personal assistant entered my life. Her kind, ever cheerful, professional and grounded efforts introduced efficiency to my obsessive-compulsive personality. She tolerated my moods while providing critical direction and occasionally the encouragement; needed to re-focus and re-aligned a temperament some hurtfully term “bi-polar”. In addition to her nominal duties, she coaxed my increasingly crippled and arthritic body to complete this book, and my obligation to God. She is proof God loves me.
A Crippled Uncertain Consciousness
My personal difficulties accepting a God exists can be termed a self-serving, oxy-moronic, antagonism. Uncertainty is as much a part of me, and my behaviors, as are my autonomic anatomical processes. My obsession with uncertainty has endured much longer than a majority of the beliefs and personality characteristics I’ve struggled to conceive and maintain throughout my lifetime. Uncertainty is a personality parasite with which I’ve established a symbiotic relationship. It’s a form of mutualism that, in retrospect, has served, preserved, and provided me benefits – including stability. It evolved to become an instinctual response. Whenever addressing a new circumstance, threat, or challenge, the process begins… The worst possible outcomes are identified. These undergo a minutely detailed, finely structured, extensive examination and microanalysis, from which a laundry list of potential actions, causalities, and conditional responses, are constructed to resolve the conflict before me. But no remedy is complete, unless, and until, the solution devised also reduces or eliminates the current threat from materializing again. I’m an expert at contingency planning. Contingency is a skill I’ve mastered at a very high level. Each contingency must also suffer the same degree of detailed examination and any obscure, potential outcome posed, played over in my mind until I devised multiple solution sets. Only then does my anxiety somewhat relent.
The other interests in my life suffer a similar amount of attention. Within this maelstrom my consciousness operates, 24/7/365. It never relents, nor may I. At times in my life when I was without companionship, to abate the loneliness, I’d listen to the radio, watch TV, and read, simultaneously. Having my physical senses engaged, to the point of overload, prevents the consciousness demons from moving forward to command my attentions. These demons suggest activities and behaviors, that, over time, I learned are not in my best interest. Several times they “complicated” my life in ways I learned to regret.
The appetites of an insatiably curious mind cannot be sated – ever. Temporary interludes arise when large chunks of information are ingested, easing the pangs that drive my attention. The information consumed creates new topics and areas needing exploration. Equilibrium is an uneasy, temporary accomplishment. Within that balanced state, considerable unanswered questions remain – positive and negative. Respites of sanity – relief from the cerebral turmoil, are brief and require specific input – copious valid and verifiable answers. The inability to secure a source of knowledge to exploit, quite literally, drives me mad. When answers are unavailable, or not yet determined, or remain undiscovered, uncertainty intensifies. Uncertainty within my mind quickly becomes a volatile mixture that may literally threaten my security and emotional cohesion. I envy others who appear able to turn off their curiosity and relax.
Provided enough opportunities or experiences, uncertainty will invariably lead to an obsessive, compulsive method of evaluation and analysis that fits the clinical definition of neurosis - OCD. No potential variable is too insignificant, unrealistic, or bizarre, to prevent my considering it. I will examine remote, near impossible influences and the outcomes they stand to deliver in exquisite and excruciating detail over, and over, and over, until I’ve sated the uncertainty demons. Permanently silencing the demons still evades my best efforts. Is the expression: “ignorance is bliss” a literal evaluation? From my perspective it may be. Or, perhaps, my mental faculties are limited; retarded in some significant way. My lack of intellectual prowess is a condition I blame for rendering my efforts a time consuming, bewildering, and all to often frustrating exercise.
Seeking resolution to not knowing, and/or being unable to find some solution set – even an incomplete set, is the source for many bad choices I made. My mental condition, and the resident fears, cannot be ignored. My idle mind is wont to consider “alternatives” – options that will suppress my anxieties and need to know. I’ve learned drugs, and illicit, or hyper-intense emotional or physically gratifying behaviors will provide distraction and synthetically enable relaxation – peace from curiosity’s demands. But these come with fringe benefits that complicate my life. This condition makes trust and faith impossible, and troubling. I will devise contingencies when confronting circumstances that require faith or trust – to protect my sensibilities and emotional stability. My personal relationships mightily suffered due to this ailment. Doubts or irreconcilable circumstances invariably lead to a coerced synthetic resolution. When unable to make a determination, the worst possible potential option or outcome is grasped. In personal relationships, betrayal and infidelities are presumed; then assumed. In academic and analytical subjects, I defer decision, or presume a subject that cannot be explored and some form of evidence developed, is flawed or untrue/invalid – hence my initial decision about God. These combine to make normal and causal strides through life a Sysiphisian journey.
Discovering God is dubious activity unless a person is genuinely motivated and willing to suspend their preconditioned prejudice: innate, preferred, and learned. Mine required facing and adapting to Death. On the first occasion, my life ended. Medical intervention revived me. The second came thirty years later. Like the first, it exceeded my ability to rationally comprehend the event and what followed.
January 2000, my wife of twenty years, entered my office to inform me her breast cancer returned. She was originally diagnosed at age 27 – a few months before we met. Her message literally cleared my head. I couldn’t think. My senses went “off”. The unexpected revelation Cancer has joined your family is not unlike hearing your wife is pregnant with your first child - only sadder. Your breath dissipates, your mouth dries, and deep inside your ears a slight buzzing begins. Like a fly stuck in a kitchen window, that buzzing grows and grows in volume until it exterminates your ability to think. Simultaneously, a low amperage electrical charge ignites in the base of your skull. That charge spreads out and into your extremities, so that each dendrite in your body is excited and agitated. The process so completely encompasses your attention and senses, you sit much the same way a condemned man occupies the electric chair; sitting straight up, staring straightforward, straight jacketed by the news. You rise instinctively to greet the reporter unsure of the appropriate response. I reached out, but my wife initially rejected the embrace offered. Then, she took it for several seconds - before rejecting it again. The event made a lasting impression. I can still taste it - Gaussian… metallic and malignant. A doldrums next emerged. The air and emotions within the room went still and grew thick - oppressive. Our conversation was muted and monotone. Words fell like a feather in a vacuum. (Reliving this experience, I quickly learned, required a warm, safe, quiet place - to endure it. Unfortunately, my consciousness often forgot the prescribed protocol and delivered up the memory at the most inappropriate and perilous moments.)
My wife’s composure and “A” personality failed her. She wanted to appear strong for our children, but broke, then reached for affection. I gave her some. We cried for a long time. (I still weep whenever the memory returns.) So many terrible, awful, thoughts raced through my brain. My rational mind called every stable emotion and intellectual asset within me. They all valiantly rallied to muster and stood there - eagerly awaiting my direction. I had none. Few events in life will so totally eviscerate your cognition and competence. Cancer news is a perfidious post-mortem prequel. Death pulls up a chair, kicks off his shoes, pops open a beer, and sits down for an uninvited, extended visit.
There is no evicting Death. Death assumes a comprehensive authority once he appears. He brings with him cohorts - terror, regret, angst, insolvency, and finally impotence – in that order. Death is a considerable (and intimidating) personality that knows precisely how his actions intersect with life, emotions, and ambitions. Death is an unintentional bully who often inflicts damage without malice. However, his reputation is well earned and formidable. When Death enters your life you learn how much he scares people. Death additionally imparts an interesting phenomenon. People cautiously avoid any place the Death recently appeared. I believe it’s an irrationally apprehension – a subliminal fear of unexpectedly confronting Death.
I describe Death as if he were an associate, or a companion. He is. Once you become comfortable in his presence, you start to admire him. I did. Death has many duties and most all of them bring grief to the living. I suspect it is Death’s responsibilities, which all visit emotional distress, that inspires people to fear him and impugn his work. Death is a non-denominational entity. He is unconcerned with a person’s religion, or the God(s) they prefer, or reject. Most people refuse to accept, or admit, death is with each of us each day throughout our lives. The uncertainty attendant Death is what moment will he take your hand. Death is very patient. He is not in a hurry.
We all commune with Death in our everyday actions, knowingly and unknowingly. Some people taunt and goad Death - much more than is necessary or wise. Certain sports and daredevils - cave divers, base jumpers, bull riding (and my personal favorite) motorcycle riding, are activities that flaunt and mock Death. Death is not amused. Murders, suicides, and the cadre of people listed above, who purposely risk their lives, put death in a position where he cannot properly manage his duties. I suspect that is why those deaths are ghastly and messy. In most circumstances, Death performs his duties magnificently, neatly, and thoroughly. He appears to enjoy his role and the intimidation his presence commands. Since Death is an entity and a destination, he has difficulty acquiring a positive opinion. Adapting Death into your life, past the terror and trepidation his work instills, significantly influences future decision taking.
Death was specifically created after Adam and Eve opted for the apple. Death, like the Holy Spirit, is incapable of directly communicating with mankind without special dispensation. His work and influence assumes a metaphysical state the human body must interpret from the physical and emotional events and changes Death’s work visits. Most experience fear when Death is mentioned, or acts in the sphere of their lives. Death of the young and other unanticipated deaths inspire emotional dislocation, and terror. Emotions range from dread to incapacitating fright. The unknown future destination of a consciousness illicit a negative, literally terminal response, if a person is able to avoid confronting Death. When Death is unavoidable, the emotions experienced by the doomed party are indeterminate and varied. Death’s influence, when immediate, more often cripples, or removes rationality, masculinity, and other strengths presumed in the targeted person. Death reduces the ostensibly strong and brave to quivering, incontinent, blobs of humanity in its most vulnerable and pitiful state.
When a person confronts Death and has the ability to delay, or plan for Death, they most often plan for the unknown moment and destination Death’s work assures. Death adamantly refuses to articulate what happens to a consciousness once he cleaves it from an earthly body. What happens after Death is an uncertainty mankind has deliberated since the act that mandated Death’s creation. Questions about the afterlife confounded mankind’s reasoning and activities beyond the boundaries of Eden. Some claim their life flashes before their eyes, a mental review of earthly actions; occurring immediately preceding Death’s arrival. When Death is anticipated, and no evasive path exists, planning for personal property and the worth of the life is calculated prior to Death. A metaphysical evaluation and comparison is made to satisfy innate curiosity, and perhaps reconcile any missing ingredients in a life – based upon the spiritual, or moral views held sacred, or, a fear of the unknown. People who conduct their lives seeking to find compliance within moral or spiritual standards, behave in ways to achieve compliance as best they may – in a persistent conflict with the antithetical desires and impulses the human body produces.
Alternatively, the agnostic and atheist feel no compunction to follow a religious moral standard most declare is abhorrent and inconsistent with temporal “facts” they embrace. They claim constructing a behavioral standard that is entirely compatible with impulse and instinct is equitable with, or better than, religious morality. However, jettisoning God and the afterlife potential leaves no definitive destination once life terminates. Fear is the typical human response to the unknown condition or circumstance Death presents. Some atheists and agnostics experience what is termed a deathbed conversion – seeking to mitigate an undersiable fate predicted in scripture and sermon. No matter a person’s decisions on morality or secular matters, they cannot escape Death, and the permanent changes he inspires in life.
I know from personal experiences fear of death is a strong motivator. My wife’s death rekindled that fear into a raging inferno. Unfortunately, my professional and family circumstances did not permit a nominal grieving period, nor could I stop to decompress. We operated a business together – one where her several degrees secured our employment contracts. I had three teenage children who lost their mother. The business employed a dozen men - with families. Finding resolutions for the numerous uncertainties that now defined my life wouldn’t be easy. All my personal resources, family members to whom I could turn for answers or direction were dead. The previous decade I’d lain to rest my mother, father, both parental in-laws, and two in-law siblings. I faced additional difficulties due to my personality. I don’t seek out friendship, and further suspect, based upon experience, my personality offends or intimidates people. The first personality condition is a mutual assessment. A survey of potential support resources confirmed this new portion of my life and its challenges would follow the previous course. I’d go it alone.
Death replaced the people I once used for reference and assumed a permanent place in my life. Death also brought questions and suspicions with him. These concerned me, and my eventual demise. Death’s recent work in my family attenuated the importance of his influence in my decision making. Becoming at ease with Death was an uncomfortable necessity. Losing my fear of Death, did nothing to temper my anger with God. Curiously, Death did nothing to influence my animus towards him. My close association with Death revealed much about how others view him; witnessed in their behaviors when Death came calling.
Once some people learn about Death’s potential visit to another’s life, they are inclined to visit and offer help. However, you learn the assistance offered by the majority of well meaning people, those repeatedly claiming they want to help, is couched and conditional. Their lives are full. They have responsibilities and families and professions. The help offered must be short in duration, inexpensive, and easily navigated. My needs then were comprehensive, and unpredictable. The other area where I needed assistance, the emotional mine field that surfaced unexpectedly, no sane person would touch. Taking advice from the mentally unstable was initially not a viable option. But as I assessed the rational advice and recommendations given, and reconsidered the realities facing me, the schizophrenic alternative provided a more practical and useful set of options. On morning walks around the yard, trying to gather the courage to face the day (and prevent my children learning of their father’s weaknesses and fears) I screamed at, and cursed, God repeatedly. God would never, ever, again be invited to harm my family, my life, my emotions. I hated God.
Only fools believed in a God – the God of the Old Testament, Allah, Buddha, or any name given a so-called High Power. God was an ointment for the feeble mind. Weak, incompetent fools created Gods responding to fears and uncertainties. Dull-witted cowards needed to fill the sensory voids present in the environment surrounding them, and the vacancies in their intellects. My disbelief in an All Mighty was only part of my problem. I lacked faith too. The motorcycle accident left disfiguring and unattractive marks on my body, but one scar was not visible. The head injury imparted a cognitive disconnect with certain projective mental functions. That made belief in an unverifiable entity, God, an impossible concept for my damaged mind – not that it mattered. I rationalized my way around the limitation. Faith, from my perspective, was an idiot’s duty. Faith was a concocted word and concept. That word, when defined, completed a philosophical assumption. Allegedly, faith is a conscious confirmation of an irrational cognitive assertion of an unseen and undetectable truth or entity. The entity occasionally revealed himself to specific “chosen people, Biblical prophets. The documented Biblical evidence additionally states the entity disclosed his plans to persist unseen and undetected. The authors diligently complied with the entity’s directions and completed an aggregate composition – the Bible. The Bible details the entity’s plans to withhold all evidence of its existence from mankind, save the prophets, so each man’s belief in the entity’s existence could be affirmed. “Faith” is the entity’s conformance standard for acceptable obedience, and, the predicate for corresponding behaviors. Faith alone accounts for a man’s belief in the entity’s unseen and undetectable presence.
Ergo - each individual’s ability to suspend the sensory reality upon which every other requirement of the entity (and life) is based, and, express Faith, (a comprehensive rejection of rationality) to profess affirmative conjecture in the entity’s unseen and undetected, but promised, benevolence – is one aspect evaluated for eternal eligibility. Evidence of the individual’s adherence to the precepts of faith forms the standard for eternal eligibility - as judged by the entity.
Seriously? The premise is ludicrous and the purpose rationally preposterous.
I attended to my family duties while I secretly wallowed in misery and despair. Distractions provided all of us the means to avoid thinking about our lives. I spent money hand over fist in flurry of distractions, gifts, and trips. I was fortunate to possess sufficient money to spoil my children rotten and purchase myself a measure of sanity and peace. Unfortunately, those decisions eventually proved untenable – with a marked absence of endurance.
The Certain Uncertain Question
My youngest son unnerved the fleeting solace (sans God) I worked to secure. Unprompted, with no preliminary discussion, as we discussed the finer points of professional football strategy on a Sunday afternoon, he blurted out the question. “Is Mom in heaven?” The question sent me searching for a scrap of information I could tactfully use to relieve my responsibility on the matter, and not admit my true sentiments about the Almighty. Finding none, I answered: “Yes”. Fortunately, there wasn’t an immediate follow up question; because the question disturbed the comfort zone I spent the previous ten months constructing. The boy initially appeared sated by the answer. A short time later, when the Forty-Niner’s first draft slot arrived, he asked how I knew (Mom was in heaven) for sure? “Faith.” popped out of my mouth before I could choke off the word.
He again looked satisfied. We contentedly watched the draft progress. Player and team questions occasionally disturbed the dynamics of draft day. No more inquiries on eternity surfaced - thankfully. The uneasy question lingered in my thoughts – part disturbance and part intrigue. I could not bring myself to glibly lie to my son about his mother. He deserved a credible answer - hopefully one that squarely placed responsibility for the death where it belonged – with God. If no legitimate answer was available - I’d blame God anyway. His requiring faith; instead of sharing the information on the eventual fate for us all was despicable and far removed from the charity and compassion pronounced synonymous with his name. Exposing God’s design as a needless and hurt filled catechism of pain pleased my sensibilities and inspired my working harder to discover the answer.
I started wondering about the ability of a consciousness, or another aspect of life, to obtain an eternal state. That required defining a consciousness. How is the consciousness structured? What are the relevant constituent parts? A quick Google query indicated quantum physics may hold an answer on the physical components. Quantum physics was a topic I never investigated past the fundamentals science and society promoted for secular continuity; to stabilize and confirm theories related to universal creation and the beginning of life on planet earth. I ordered a small children’s book. The Amazon reference indicated John Gribbin’s: “Quantum Physics” included a rudimentary over view of the discipline. Perfect! The book took me several days to digest even though it contained numerous pictures and only 72 pages. It was compiled in a child’s small, 4” X 4”, format. The text and assertions grabbed my attention with an unusual force.
New terminology and vernacular entered my life. I began to enjoy the topic once I mastered the fundamentals. Over the next two years, one book tuned into ten; then twenty… then… more. My research eventually required investigating complimentary volumes on classic physics, cosmology, philosophy, biology, etc. Not finding a quick answer, did not dissuade my new fascination with the sub-atomic realm. The secular answer to the eternity question was not easily solved – even after investigating several complimentary disciplines. The philosophy of quantum and individual conjecture from professors of quantum physics alluded to a nebulous, overtly uncertain, interpretation of evidence, and, weird, non-sequitur opinions and conclusions. The conjecture was often pointless and occasionally useless for my eternity purposes. Quantum physics increasingly imposed a large waste of time and money. Hard cover books are my preference and many are not cheap. Fifty volumes covering a variety of disciplines led me to a competent and wonderful understanding of the sub-atomic universe, but, no closer to an answer. Other responsibilities suffered while I read, and read, and read about quantum and cosmology. On the second anniversary of Judy’s death, as the family paid deference to our dead mother, my son became emotional. He repeated his question quietly as I attempted to comfort him. God was again hurting my children. That enraged me. It also reinforced my decision to find an answer that comforted my son, and condemned God.
Proving an eternal afterlife potential is a considerable goal, and one I was ill prepared, and unsuited, to take. Notable minds with abundant intellectual prowess and command of several diverse and relevant disciplines of study hadn't made a declaration they discovered proof. Surely, if information that validated an afterlife were available, those minds would report it. By intellectual and credential comparison, I’m a piker. Increasingly, I grew disillusioned. The demands of my motherless children and professional responsibilities aggravated and constricted my time and attentions. Looking to escalate the process and appease my demons, I started flooding my senses with information. I’d simultaneously enjoying television and listened to the Feynman lectures on audio. Philosophy and religious tomes were also investigated - Nag Hammadi, Septuagint, Kant, Nietzsche, Bohm, etc. My knowledge of physics and various philosophies improved, but the answer remained outside my grasp. The substantial difficulties resolving the search protocols were one by one subdued; but one remained persistently problematic – the answer to my son’s question.
As my studies shifted to video and TV, I learned uniform and unassailable “truths” are embrace by each scientist interviewed or providing comments. Evolution is responsible for life and its variants. The universe was created in a Big Bang event. These two concepts were iterated and reiterated ad nauseum. The video programming was topical and consistent, a little too consistent. I started questioning the comments and content covered. Not one person provided an alternative, contrary view or interpretation. From my less than certifiably adroit observations, I saw considerable inconsistencies in the consistencies. If I could see inconsistencies, why didn’t the commentators? They were highly degrees professionals. Science’s conclusions on both topics, Big Bang and Evolution, were supported using hypotheticals and evidence that appeared twisted (at least from my perspective) to make it fit the proposed hypothesis. Some linkage was incredibly weak and non sequitur. I also noted scientists argued on other topics and disagreed with profound vigor.
Life and creation, however, was treated differently, as though it was a revered, Strang Verbotten topic. The premise for creation’s causality included numerous evolutionary “inconsistencies”, and gapping chasms of missing critical evidence. Those were off-limits, apparently. Variants in how, where, and why - the commentator’s opinions and comments never once challenged science’s sacrosanct version of Genesis. This secular perspective was as bad as the Christian Bible’s dogma. Apparently, no extra-terrestrial, no variant, no alternative influences and causalities were permitted, or discussed. My study next went off the rails. Unseen, undetectable, and unsubstantiated forms of energy and matter next entered the matrix of science’s arsenal of evidence and fact. Dark Matter and Energy complimented a new premise - String Theory. These new components and conjecture seek to redefine the topic and study conditions, moving them much further from rational evaluation and philosophical responsibility. It increasingly appeared science purposely complicated and convoluted their theories and conjecture to increase the uncertain and unverifiable information needed to substantiate the conclusions science offered for life and creation.
Conducting research didn’t resolve the question. Boredom then grew out frustration. Examining unrelated aspects of the information I viewed, I began seeing glaring inconsistencies. I could not offer science’s conclusions to my son. It was no better than the spiritual answer I gave him. Doubt about my intellectual competence and the waste of time and money in the study combined to sustain doubts about my competence. Inexplicably, as I pondered my failures, a forgotten option surfaced to torment me - Prayer. That option for help and information wasn’t attractive. I actively sought proof that option was no option at all. I’d done my best to remove it from my life and consciousness entirely. The option was incredible and a waste of time. I acquired sufficient information to convincingly argue, with statistics, scientific evidence, and abundant facts – the God option, or a higher being, was an impossible and irresponsible option. There were additional personal issues that lay in the God option. Reconnecting with God was problematic. I’d developed a keen dislike for the man over the years. To say we were estranged is a gross understatement. I didn’t need or want God further complicating my life.
The study ground to predictable halt of frustration. Frustration for me is an interminable torture. Bizarre thoughts and unorthodox behaviors persistently arise when frustration enters my life. Desperation is a common reaction and when it arrives rational deliberation often vanishes. One evening, while acutely aggravated and frsutrated, God entered my thoughts. I postulated eternity was God’s domain. He surely held an answer - if he was a God. Seeking information from that source posed a potential admission I dismissed seconds after contemplating it. Searching for answers on grace and eternity after the course I’d chosen for my life, and the disrespectful behaviors displayed with emotional vigor, was a conflicted - and embarrassing admission I was loathe to make. A part of me was indoctrinated in religious beliefs. The other part, my damaged personality, objected and refused to believe in God. My previous relationship with God attenuated anxiety and adorned my deliberations with dread and anger. Re-establishing contact with an entity I didn't believe existed was a preponderant predicament. How that entity might perceive inquiry from someone who defied and mocked his existence; someone who verbally abused and profaned his name (daily) carried a promised consequence I didn’t want to tempt. Potentially, God may provide the assistance to answer the question, but I didn’t trust him. Nor could I bring myself to admit God existed, and thereby invalidate all my previous efforts discovering evidence to state God was a myth. Admitting someone, or something, I rejected from deliberative and philosophical analysis, and whom I despised emotionally, might exclusively hold the answers I sought was a contradictory, irrational, and insipid concession.
Besides, so doing might inadvertently reveal proof of God’s existence. If that information surfaced, a new menace was certain to infest my life, and, potentially, my eternity. “Accidentally” learning a God exists, admitting the discovery, and then changing behaviors to achieve compliance is a glaringly deceitful behavioral option. That option is one sure to significantly disincentivize any positive evaluation of my prodigal behaviors and motivations. Moreover, if a God existed, my previous experiences indicated he disliked me and couldn't care less about my personal difficulties. "God" in my life was synonymous with death, disfigurement and despair. God created and introduced misery in my life. His doing nothing to improve the circumstances in my life was insulting and proof of his patented paternal disregard. If God was my Heavenly Father, he behaved like an irresponsible parent who refused to pay child support or exercise his visitation privileges. I briefly considered seeking God’s input before deciding there would be no divine input in my calculus on eternity. I couldn't handle anymore of the “affections” God conveyed – at least to me.
The heaven question did not relent and the secular answer remained elusive. Each night as the family communed at the dinner table, my son’s innocent face rekindled my duty (and doubts) in finding an answer. Juxtaposing reality to cover my reticence, I dissembled God and the question. Investigating the potential for eternal life was my fatherly duty. If I prayed and discovered proof, I’d share the proof. If not, I’d previously answered the question. I didn’t really need an answer. My praying fulfilled a paternal obligation - solely. Objectively removing my personal conflicts from the investigation and seeking out God’s input provided a side benefit - a mental exercise - to practice “recusal”.
Confused and frustrated, I began re-reading Isaac Newton’s: Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica (Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy). In re-reading the work a comment unexpectedly slapped me with considerable force.
“…all entities, including the human mind and even the divine being, are extended in the sense that they have spatial location, even when extended in ways that distinguish them from ordinary material bodies.”
Newton demanded God’s inclusion and claimed he was an essential ingredient in all matter(s). That incident prompted another finding - Einstein also made references to God and how God inspired him. God was creeping into the study despite my not wanting him. I reluctantly shifted the study to scripture for relevant information dismissed from scientific tomes.
The requirements of intellectual honesty with my son (and myself) were indispensible ingredients, and a concept to which I pledged allegiance. Intense study with a selfless objective… one that held no personal meaning or gain, historically, was not, is not, your author’s prerogative. That an uncertain afterlife and God were topics directing the study made it contrary and arduous. I didn’t expect to find evidence that supported the possibility of eternal life. Nor was facing up to unresolved personal conflicts and contradictions of conscience (intentionally boxed away long ago in the Do Not Recall section of my consciousness) a planned event. Guilt made certain it happened that way.
Entering the Do Not Recall area of my consciousness, where the worst memories, atrocious behaviors, and vile outcomes in my life were intentionally secured was anxiety squared. I avoided considering portions of my past with a purposeful reserve. Long ago, out of necessity, I created an isolated partition to compartmentalize specific events; and prevent my accidentally recalling them in a moment of weakness, or emotional overload. Guilt controls that domain.
As I considered what else I might examine to find an answer to the question, Guilt invited a conversation. I took it, thinking Guilt may assist in my efforts. Guilt forcefully pressed me past the threshold where I normally stopped. Once in his domain, it is difficult for me to leave. Guilt knows this. Unresolved conflicts, bad decisions and their outcomes combine to command my fascination and undivided attention. The contents of the domain elicits divergent emotional responses - part shame and part awe. Guilt assured every illicit entry was meticulously recorded in exquisite detail, and he revels in revealing them to me.
Guilt is an obstinate companion and quick to remind me he serves at my pleasure. My choices created him. I cannot bid him farewell. Moreover, in theory, comparative analysis, augmented with guilt, is how I learn from my mistakes. A part of me wants to be good. Guilt provides the only shackle that prevents my reverting to previous behaviors and wallowing in them, expanding them. Guilt is more than my companion and conscience. He preserves me. Guilt not only chronicles my behaviors, he reads them aloud whenever I enter his domain to intensify the impact. Guilt manages the dark recesses of consciousness where frustration, anguish, failures, and fear, lay resident. Guilt notwithstanding, this separation of content is useful. It enables my affecting an outward display of confidence and savoir-faire. Lying to one’s self is an idiot’s gambit I long ago mastered. The practice is rife with pathological I.O.U.s that religiously follow Murphy’s Law. I can cope with that… if not well.
Nervous tics, panic attacks, and a plethora of trauma induced, undiagnosed, obsessive compulsive, neurotic conversion reactions are manifest whenever I confront my past’s potential influences upon the afterlife. A “Tourette’s-Lite” syndrome forms my coping mechanism for Guilt. Besides, I’ve always stuttered. I’m confident it’s purely coincidental the stuttering develops a life of its own after hearing Guilt recite a precisian prelude to my judgment at the Second Coming. It didn’t matter the stuttering occasionally crippled my ability to communicate. I avoided speaking. That left me exclusively in the same debilitating company that produced the stuttering. Irreconcilable regret and deferential despair delineates my destiny within Guilt’s domain. I departed Guilt’s company dislocated and despondent.
Frustrated and humbled, fearful of failing my son, or finding more proof my research methods and intellectual abilities were fallible (and wont to be incompetent) I secretly considered prayer in earnest. Re-acting badly to failure is a habit with which I’ve grown comfortable. I know the process well. When frustrations become married to desperation, the pair breeds equivocation and rationalization. They invariably sire justification. This generational lineage of qualified excuse making is courted, and wed, to placate Guilt and intentionally erode an acknowledged higher standard, in lieu of obtaining the benefits properly resolving a problem allows. Uncertainty can make a person crazy.
There was no way of avoiding the conclusion my adopting prayer for an answer signaled - I failed! Failure was not an option I preferred, but my efforts left no real alternative. Prayer was another legitimate option in the study parameters I adopted. Convincing myself I had no choice and actually left no stone unturned, required a “comprehensive” investigation of all the information potentially available - reasoned and ludicrous. Only then, could I honestly end the matter and excuse my failing to find a secular answer on my own. Besides, I knew assistance from a God was not forthcoming.
I continued the prayers (and my studies) convinced both efforts were pointless. Prayer, however, provided an ancillary benefit. The lack of divine intervention, no answer to my prayers, permitted my cementing a belief no God existed. As the days passed with no divine input, a laborious tedium infected the study. I began re-reading some material that appealed to me for reasons not linked to the eternity question. Distractions also surfaced as I found previously missed concepts, phenomena, and conjecture that ranged from unusual to bizarre in the revisited material. Unorthodox relationships and properties became apparent contemplating the behaviors of the electron/photon.
Light speed is an absolute requirement as it infers eternity’s potential. Light speed overcomes the time-space continuum according to Einstein’s assessment in E=MC ô. The Electron’s properties potentially satisfy Einstein’s conditioned conclusion… I quickly focused my attentions upon the electron’s potential role in human consciousness. If specific associations were made, those conditions might bear upon the physical composition of the electron/photon and potentially the energy that powers the human consciousness. The consciousness might very well contain those components – electron/photon.
After all, human life was verified by measuring electrical activity in the body. The consciousness was either a segment of human life, or a separate entity. The inconsistencies within the consciousness were numerous; just like the electron/photon. The mind often functioned perfectly despite injury or physical afflictions that compromised other areas of the body. Catatonia was a radical separation of the two. Spinal injuries were another. Unusual phenomenon and missed relationships that altered my perspective materialized.
A terror unexpectedly startled me; like failing to see a threat, so perfectly camouflaged in the trappings of habits it goes undetected. When it leaps to attack, it is so close and quick a defensive respond is impossible - or too late.
Discovering Uncertainty’s Potential
The moment the connections between the electron and consciousness became obvious severed my conceptual continuity. The event incapacitated the minute reserves of my competence - credibility crumbs I preciously guarded like my integrity depended upon it. My beliefs shattered simultaneously. A wave of remorse crushed me. I lost all confidence in my rational abilities with a sigh. An immense vacancy in my intellect appeared. A word that particularly appealed to me, but I seldom used for lack of opportunity, entered my thoughts. It perfectly described my situation – feckless. My selfish priorities and recently distilled intellectual cohesion dissolved - like a hologram when the viewer’s perspective changes. The hierarchy of secular, indispensable conclusions about God I previously adopted with smug, self-assuredness, and rebellious indignation, dissembled under the revelation. These needed significant re-ordering. A remarkable moment of exhilaration was replaced with astonished embarrassment. The answer to the question entirely resided within the inexplicable and indeterminate quantum concept of “Uncertainty”.
A sensory overload ensued considering all the pertinent potentials of uncertainty. Uncertainty - the phenomenon that inferred states and properties (including potential sentience) and other extraordinary behaviors that defied classic, Newtonian physics, and subordinate scientific concepts and truths, stared back at me - blankly. The confounding and contradictory phenomena, and observed properties of uncertainty, mandated considering an extraneous, foreign, maybe alien, and, potentially, divine interdiction was ultimately responsible for the electron’s composition and behavior. The electron’s creation was subject to the same intervention. If, the requisite, unsubstantiated, premise offered to legitimize the speculation explaining the origin of the universe does not account for the Uncaused First Cause - and - the matter, energy, and CHANCE, required to initiate that uncaused causality are concordantly unsubstantiated, unverifiable; pocked and marred with inconsistencies and overly hopeful indeterminate interpretations and conclusions; the source of that matter, and energy, and chance, continues - anonymously, unresolved... Uncertain! Chance, happenstance, “fate”, assumes omniscient importance as it rises to pre-eminence as the exclusive and fundamental causality for the scientific version of universal conception, and its progeny - the adjacent reality spawned and embraced. This concept no longer made sense. I expected better from science. That rush of input temporarily abated my cerebral demons.
The electron/photon is matter moving at light speed. Matter at that velocity overcomes the restrictions time imposes! Potentially, a new dimensional time paradigm is available, and obtained. Eternity is an absence of time. Analogous relationships and obvious conclusion next materialized. The human consciousness, the soul, is comprised of electrons/photons. If that relationship is true, eternal life was probable - much more than possible. If the electron/photon comprised the soul, a God could exist, and probably existed. One had to.
As the facts and evidence materialized and aligned, I awoke from a self induced, decades long, cognitive coma. I could no longer pretend God was Mr. Irrelevant. Somehow, God fit perfectly into the evidence, and complimented ancillary conditions.
In desperation, I manically sought out conflicting evidence – to reaffirm my previous suspicions and conclusions no God was possible. That search delivered more profound support refuting my prior deductions. The divine connections and relationships were unavoidable, and, undeniable. Then, philosophical factors materialized to insult and embarrass me in areas foreign to me until that moment. Philosophy and metaphysical evaluation united the ingredients with an eloquent equilibrium and undeniable surety. The strict isolation protocols I planned, separating the two perspectives (to preserve my disbelief in God) ran together like colors in an Impressionist painting. I saw the contingent continuity, how each component relied upon the other in a comprehensive collage of coordinated precision - perfection. The majesty of a design that deftly, and delicately, subdued order for both extremes of magnitude and provided the environment where every particle of matter enjoys its relative, and objective, purpose across dimensions and timescales my feeble human mind could not comprehend, stunned me. My secular concentration subsided contritely. The answer was unconditionally conditional – and certain.
God’s affections for mankind were bound within the collage. That realization crippled my emotions. It wasn’t overt. God’s love was a mundane object my degenerate emotional misgivings depreciated and overlooked. The affections blended into the background of familiarity, and contempt blinded my considering it. I slowly recognized and interpreted God’s collective handiwork. No matter where I cast my gaze, or directed my thoughts, irrefutable proof of God’s design and compassion stood with guilt. Guilt’s I told you so expression was unmistakable. He mocked me and ridiculed my intellectual prowess. I had no rebuttal or rationale for argument.
God had blessed me in ways I ignored. His favor continued despite my insufferable and petulant behaviors. The paternal emotions expressed tolerated and transcended my immature angst. My Father patiently waited for me to respond and accept the gift – unconditionally. A prodigal past didn’t matter. The welcome was unconditional. The glut of evidence before me comprehensively convicted my self-serving secular conclusions. Guilt gloated. Years of anxiety and fears escaped the sanctuary of sanity and poured onto my face. I couldn’t contain them or my shame and wept uncontrollably.
Once my emotions waned, I felt the weight of disappointment my behaviors and choices expressed upon the sire of my soul. Evidence of affection from the Father I believed abandoned me was indisputable and ubiquitous. It condemned an arrogance I labeled rationality. The necessary restrictions, limitations, and obligations of the Lord’s divine design precluded communication using the physical components of earthly life. This reality enhanced the frustrations of being unable to commune with the creator of consciousness, or impart touch, to reaffirm our shared physical senses past a superficial, conceptual contact was profound - and pitiful.
Conversely, an alternative eternity was manifest. The outcome held for me on the alternative axis of reality prompted dread, and an anxious exhilaration simultaneously. The magnitude and consequence of my disobedience at long last finally made sense in the corrupted continuity of my consciousness. Comprehending the quantum of emotions, which bound a celestial consciousness, shared with my Father, aligned. The gravity of the choices defining my life engraved temporal and eternal options – heaven and earth. Learning choice and behaviors were formative and essential prerequisites for reasons past eternal eligibility clarified my ignorance and disgrace.
Comprehending specific components of consciousness, and the ordered arrangement of those components, exclusively render the consciousness physically capable of enduring the eternal realm, was stupefying and - The Answer. Like an earthly parent teaching their offspring oblique and complex principles that required concentrated, unrequited, long-term sacrifice, and additionally offend the child’s comforts and preferences, or their intellectual capacity, the parent knowing those efforts best assure the child’s future success and safe keeping must trust the child – have Faith. I had no response of worth, and lacked the justification to express one to God, or my earthly father.
Those choices… my choices: excuses, distractions, and deflections of responsibility, summed to a contemptible certainty, and truth. I dishonored the precious gift provided and entrusted to me. This perception, and its potential, weighted my repentance. What remained in my life was an abbreviated opportunity I must not squander. Salvaging the remnants of my soul required an unfamiliar and sustained effort for an uncertain end. Shame shuttered my surroundings as I contemplated condemnation, time remaining in my life, and the reserves of repentance available to me.
Changing an agnostic opinion and lifestyle equipped with choices and behaviors that accommodate the opinion is not simple, nor is it linear. It’s inordinately complicated with habits, appetites, and dependencies, colluding to derail improvement, in lieu of perpetuating comfort and complacency. Reflecting upon a secular life choice, and the damage inflicted from heart and hand, creates a loathsome legacy. We earn whatever judgment comes our way. Repentance and changing behaviors provides the “soul” remedy. Accomplishing a new “good” each day and striving for obedience hopefully eases God’s disappointments and erases black marks.
What I hope to avoid is missing out on Dad’s company. With the secular blinders removed, I’ve grown to like and admire him. I want to learn more from him. If I miss out on his instruction and affections I’ll have myself to blame. For now, I’m content he is willing to assist me, provide direction, and love me. Considering my past, I deserve other treatment. Grace and compassion form a concept I’m slow to comprehend. It’s that knucklehead part deeply ingrained within me.
The revelation contained within the discovery led me to become a Moral Disciple. My studies were only beginning. I’d broadened my references. Any source of information or history that pertains to Christ and God are valid references in my study – unless, in reading them I find irrelevant, or caustic material that contextually critiques Christianity, vilifies Christ, or gratuitously discredits God and religion seeking to support a secular humanist’s worldview that purposely avoids intellectual honesty and contemptuously assaults Christianity misusing the very First Amendment protection enumerated. This journey of coherent spiritual discovery was an elucidating and powerful experience that altered my perspectives. It changed my beliefs in a meaningful and permanent manner. It is my duty to share it with others.