Below is a thoughtful post by Mike Myers.
“Today I put 1200 screws into 100 face frames. So basically that freed up my brain to think about other stuff. Like why am I here? Where am I going and where was I before here?
What if the New Agers are right?
What if we all are one?
What if we had complete intimacy with each other before we came to earth?
And what if this is our first experience in a body?
What if our insecurities are really rooted in separation anxiety from each other? Maybe we really miss the that unity with each other?
What if this is our first time where we can’t hear each other’s thoughts?
What if before we came here we never had to guess each other’s motives?
What if we chose to come to earth because we wanted our souls to grow in wisdom, love, forgiveness, knowledge and compassion?
What if our enemies were our best of friends in a previous life?
What if the rich and famous are the beginners in their soul refinement and the poor minorities are ready to graduate?
What if suffering produces substance to the soul?
What if our souls have no gender and that’s why people of the same sex love each other?
What if we’re no longer human after we die?
What if this is the first time I’ve been given the opportunity to have a self?
What if I was so intertwined with the rest of you that selfishness wasn’t even a possibility for me then?
Why do I have these thoughts? Because I’ve tasted true intimacy. I’ve been intimate with both men and women in a non-sexual way. I’ve experienced compassion within myself that moved me like nothing else ever has. It’s beautiful to feel someone’s hurt. It’s a privilege that someone would let me feel their pain. And of course it’s exhilarating to be so supportive of someone that you explode with pride when they accomplish the seemingly impossible.
I don’t think life is a test. I think life is a college. And maybe we’re not graded on our performance. Maybe we’re all just auditing the classes that interest us. And maybe everything I just wrote is total bullshit. Either way, I’m not dogmatic about life anymore. I have lots of questions now. And that gives my soul a sense of awe that it didn’t have when I knew everything when I was a Christian.
I hope we all enjoy earth while we can. We’re not here very long. So seize the day!”
Being free from the institutional religion does encourage us to think beyond the theological box, freely and boldly indeed. I like the questions he posed – some of them are similar to the questions that I have considered before, such as the possibility that we are all one and the new agers are right (since they subscribe to ancient wisdom that depends on intuition). He has asked many other good questions based on reason and observation – such as “What if suffering produces substance to the soul?” I think that may be a mystery that unfurls and unfolds over time because many a times, we see and experience suffering in ourselves or in others as a means to become more compassionate and understanding, which otherwise might not have developed if we had an easier life.
This in turn may answer the question “What if the rich and famous are the beginners in their soul refinement and the poor minorities are ready to graduate?” It seems to me that, apart from some rag-to-riches stories of how hardship builds people’s character and compassion, most of the people who are addicted to fame and wealth (in business, entertainment, religious, political circles, etc) are spiritually impoverished compared to those who do not have as much and are free from such addictions – maybe that’s what Jesus means by “blessed are the poor (in spirit), for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” to describe the paradoxical reality.
Overall, I agree with his view that life is a college in which we learn and “grow in wisdom, love, forgiveness, knowledge and compassion”. There may be no definite answers to the mystery behind the afterlife, but it is always worth being open to the possibilities of being connected to the eternal realm and being temporary visitors on earth, as described in the Australian Aboriginal proverb in this blog.