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Saturday, June 25, 2016

Heaven and Hell Right Here, Right Now

I've often said that in old English, the word "hell" meant to separate, to wall off, as in build a rock fence. Jesus told us the kingdom of heaven is within. This morning I read something from William Law:
The will is that which has all power; it makes heaven and it makes hell; for there is no hell but where the will of the creature is turned from God, nor any heaven but where the will of the creature worketh with God.
I'm not too thrilled to be called a creature, but then he wrote a long time ago and maybe it seemed better then. Anyway, I understand and agree with his point. There is nothing worse, nothing more scary than to feel as if the Holy Presence is not here. Of course, God is always here, there and everywhere, but because we have freewill, we can turn away.

I think we sometimes scare ourselves with wild fantasy stories made up of darkness and fear. We wall ourselves off from the Light. Perhaps we also create a wall around that center point within wherein dwells the Spark, the Light, the Kingdom of God.

It would change not only our own selves, but a portion of the whole world should we choose to turn the other way, toward God and welcome living in heaven here on earth.

It could be easier said than done, or it could be easier done than said - that's pretty much up to us. There is a trail of breadcrumbs, so to speak, left by all great spiritual lights, mystics, those who knew. We can read their ideas, conveyed as best they can in the imperfect words we have. We speak of magnificent splendor, but we have not an inkling of what that really is until one day the Magnificent Splendor breaks through --- then we Know.

If we want to leave our hells behind, I suggest we spend at least as much time in reading those imperfect words, praying, contemplating, meditating, journaling and doing acts of kindness as we do watching television, exercising, and playing computer games.

Our choice is to (pretend to) wall ourselves off from the Holy Presence or to turn and walk into Its Embrace.

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