For the last 11 years or so, I have sworn off religion. Where I live–in a rural and conservative community–this is kind of a big deal. To some, this makes me a bad person.
And so, it is one subject that I normally do not talk about. I’ve had my ideas, my own way of doing things, and a husband who was in agreement–and that has been enough.
That is, until all of this anxiety came over me. Suddenly, I found myself desiring, needing–something… MORE. Some kind of connection to something greater than myself. Some thing to make me feel like I am not so incredibly alone in this awful struggle.
I have spent the last week, especially, craving and wanting to fit myself into the mold of “religion” and Christianity. I even went to church on Sunday, thinking that the community would be what I needed. Thankfully, the church I chose was the best possible one for our area–open-minded, liberal, and fairly accepting.
I’m still not sure. It feels like, by falling in line with religion and its rituals and its need to label right and wrong, I am not being authentic to my true self.
Here is what I know about myself: I know that I am seeking connected-ness and comfort. I know that I believe in humanity–in compassion, kindness, and love. I want to live a moral life– not by following a prescribed set of rules, but by doing so with my actions–by giving my heart to people, by trying to make a difference, by showing compassion. I do not want to judge anyone else because I feel like it is not my job to determine their worthiness or their happiness.
Do religious people do those things? Some do. But, do you have to be religious to do those things? I don’t think so.
I am struggling with my definition of spirituality. I am struggling to belong. I know my thoughts and my beliefs are valid–but finding a community and connecting with other people with these same thoughts is what I need.
Don’t get me wrong–I wish I had the ability to let go of my need for certainty and *know* what exists for me outside of this world–that knowledge would be such an amazing relief to my overthinking mind.
For now, I know myself. I know the value of nature and the pull I feel when I look into the sky and realize how vast this earth is. Does that mean there is something greater?
That is what is hard to say.