At this writing it is nine days before the 2016 election, undoubtedly the most important election in our lifetimes. The election has been marred by the sexist antics of both Donald Trump and Anthony Wiener, whose ex-wife Huma Abedin unfortunately had some emails from Weiner on her computer which exploded the whole story last night.
By the time you are reading this we probably know the outcome of the election, but what interests me now is the fact that these emails were the result of a Congressman sending sexual messages to a 15 year old girl, the same man who was previously caught mailing his own penis pictures to women. Moreover, much of the latest weeks of the election have been dominated by Trump’s bad behavior toward women, at an entirely immature and sexist level.
As a man, I am embarrassed. As an American, I am embarrassed by this whole election. Many men were quick to step forward and say they don’t act that way in locker rooms, and for most that is true. But there is a lot of locker room talk that would also be embarrassing if it came out that doesn’t go to an assault level, but is chauvinistic and demeaning toward women none the less.
This is a critically important question for anyone pursuing spirituality, for it is what spirituality is all about–your relationship with God. There seems to be as many definitions of God as there are people, and perhaps that is all for the good.
Beliefs about God are a way of shaping a piece of that infinitude that is the Divine into a piece that we can grasp ahold of and relate to. Those beliefs become a structure, a form that we hold God in. In living within that piece of the divine demarcated by our beliefs, it eventually becomes a constriction rather than a liberator of ourselves, of our growth as a spiritual being. That’s because God is always more than whatever we can imagine.
Considering that, perhaps your beliefs about what God is tell more about you than about God. Beliefs about God shape culture and history, for example. In the east one common conception of God has been that God is everything and nothing, a vast void, and reality is an illusion, individuality is an illusion and the goal of spirituality is to end the false sense that you are separate, from anything. The cultures that have developed around that emphasize the collective, the group, with a de-emphasis on the individual.