Back in the day when my children were small, Transactional Analysis, T.A., was a big thing. Maybe it still is, but I've not heard of it lately. Actually I hope it is because it simply describes how we relate to one another in a way almost anyone can grasp. In fact, my daughter's 3rd grade teacher had the whole classroom set up on that theme. Part of it was two basic ways to interact - warm fuzzies or cold pricklies. Just reading the words, a person can get the gist of it. A person who gives warm fuzzies is different than a cold prickly kind of person. Of course, we are all somewhere on a continuum between the two, however, some seem stuck on one side or the other.
This morning I awoke with someone vividly on my mind. It is someone I love, yet who is stuck on the cold prickly side of life. He wants so desperately to be loved, and at the same time, he pushes people away with his cold prickly way of relating, combined with a rather large pinch of paranoia. I spent quite awhile praying for him. I saw he has an essential, profound need to be enfolded in love. But, he finds something wrong with everyone and pushes away with caustic rages and attacks.
Then I began to see that so many push their good away with similar tactics. Then I saw those who live far (in their minds) from God, have cold prickly reactions toward God. But, I'm pretty sure their cold prickly God relationship is based on some of the history of religion, which has often been led by those with no spiritual understanding at all and so distort the meanings. So many have become religious leaders for all the wrong reasons - feeds the ego, is a good living, etc. and not - I am called, I have felt the hand of God, I have seen the Light, It seems to me that the ego-led religious leader becomes a religious tyrant who has tons of rules to control others. This is opposite of the founders of their religious traditions who taught setting people free to love and live and be all they can be, knowing they are living in the Presence of God,
In my journey I have met many agnostics and atheists. They tell me they don't believe in God. They talk about the strange god that people have made in the image of the worst of humankind, This god is jealous, angry, violent at times, keeps score and eventually will put some subset of people into fire for the rest of eternity. You'd better not upset this god, or you'll be one of those people in the fire. And on an on, I'm sure everyone is acquainted with this incredibly sick idea of God.
I tell them that I don't believe in that god either, I believe in an Infinite Presence who is pure, unconditional Love, This God lives and has Being in all of us. This God has given us freewill. This God participates in our lives with Guidance and Insight, Forgiveness and Love, pure Light and is also the Creator, Creating and re-Creating every moment. This God is limitless, thoroughly good, always with us as Divine Energy, the Holy Presence. This God does not judge, but rather encourages us to grow and expand and make ever more holy choices. Since God gave us freewill, there has to be a contrast, so there is darkness/evil. Without the contrast, there is no actual freewill, for there would be nothing else to choose. So, we are free to choose the light or the darkside, and there are consequences, which are our feedback, our teachers. In some ways, its a giant bio-feedback mechanism set up for us to learn what happens when we choose well and what happens when we choose poorly.
So I ponder this morning, how can we heal the cold prickly situation that binds people in a lonely place seemingly far from God. I think I've mentioned before, that the word "hell" is an old English term meaning walled off. There are people walking this planet who walk in hell because they are walled off by crazy notions about God. Jesus told us the Kingdom is within. There are people walking this planet who walk in heaven.
Guide us out of any remnant of a cold prickly kind of life. Open our hearts to live a warm fuzzy kind of life. Open us to live aware of the Holy Presence every moment, THE Presence. We release old, superstitious, strange notions about God. We open to know the actual God, the God of Love and walk this earth in a heavenly way.