I grew up knowing of the Book of Genesis and while I lacked formal religious education, these lines are etched into my memory:
1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
2 Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.
3 And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.
4 God saw that the light was good, and He separated the light from the darkness.
The Introduction to A Course in Miracles says “Nothing real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists. Herein lies the peace of God.”
For those who have been following my blog awhile, you know that this started out as a way to track my movement through 2013. Most of the material has been very positive, even magical or mystical in content. I also aim to be as authentic as possible. At this point in my journey the BIG question has come up again, BIG time! What am I talking about?
I transitioned from the Old Testament to spiritual seeking many moons ago. Questions such as ” What happens after death?” or ” Why is there so much suffering?” or ” Why is there inequality between men and women in organized religion?” were not answered to my satisfaction. Later in college I was introduced to philosophy. We pondered “What is consciousness?” Descartes’ quote ” I think therefore I am.” did placate me temporarily. In my twenties I eventually laid my eyes upon A Course in Miracles. My study group struggled with the heady material for a few years, uncovering its wisdom and unraveling our toxic belief systems. I still consider these teachings sacred and comforting in times of woe.
But no text or teacher or thought leader has ever been able to address the BIG question. When it first hit me, I was frightened that I was capable of producing this thought. For several years I pushed it aside and told myself it was just too dark. I did not even say it out loud until about a year ago when I was in consultation with my Spiritual Director. She was able to assure me that I am not alone in considering the question and referred me to the works of Ken Wilber. Although I find his writing to be quite intriguing , it still left me answerless and lost.
Ready for the BIG question – Why life?
I do not mean why life on Earth or why Earth. I mean why is there a need for any consciousness at all? Genesis refers to the beginning, well what happened before that? Was there always a system and if so, why is there a need for a system? If you say, there is no time or space, that is fine, BUT it does not address the question. The Course addresses reality versus illusion in the introduction, yet still leaves me wondering ” What does it mean to be real and why is there any need for reality in the first place?”
Why NOT total absolute infinite darkness?
No sweet YouTube video or charming sentiment is provided here to end this post. I am hungry for the answers and glad that I took the plunge to entertain this topic here. My lack of answers leaves me very uncomfortable, but human. Accept my invitation to take the leap with me. Please help me explore this further by sharing your thoughts.
first image courtesy of By Smithsonian Institution via Wikimedia Commons
second image courtesy of User:Alain r ( Own work) via Wikimedia Commons http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5/deed.en
64 comments on “Musings – And in the beginning ….”
I’ve walked a similar path in the quest for knowing why – I found peace when I embraced,
“Life IS –
“Why?” because I woke up breathing this a.m. –
“What’s it Mean”? Whatever I decide to make it mean, today – or next week, or next year”
To me, asking the question and exploring the possible answers gives you rich fodder for how to go about Life in a way that has meaning for you – today, tomorrow, etc…
NOT to find some Ultimate Truth –
I’m reminded of something I read some years ago, that said,
“All living systems evolve to a level of complexity and size where they hit a ceiling – there is no going forward in expansion unless they re-order, re-configure – as the living thing re-designs itself to expand, there will be destruction and chaos”
I offer you two supportive closings, both of which are true, but one or another may not work for you –
1. Hugs as you work through your existential angst – been there, bought the t-shirt, always re-visit the durn tourist trap every so often – I hear YA! xoxoxo
2. Congratulations on the chaos! How exciting you’re getting geared up for a more expanded version of Life – xoxoxo
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In the spirit of non-duality, I will accept both closings and embrace them both with love ❤
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I love to tell people that the question Why is only one letter in an alphabet, choose another!
The reason is quite simple for me… for when we let go of all the questioning we enter into the stillness. Perhaps as one reader previously said, it was boredom that may have prompted the creation of life.
Perhaps we wished to experience not knowing the answer and looking for it in a giant maze of creation. A cosmic game of hide and seek prompted by…Y… a single line diverging into duality with endless possibilities when interconnected and quantified.
Enjoy the enigma for in solving it you will create An Other and another and An Other… for you are the Creator of it ALL.
Or let it go and become all of it experiencing itself expanding without end.
Peace, Light and Love to you All
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Charlie, thanks for this amazing comment. It really adds another layer to a rich and diverse discussion. peace to you.
I remember, as a child of about 5 begging my mother to answer this question. She would go so far, and I would say, “but what was before that?!” There are so many philosophies, beliefs, wisdom on the topic – some of which I resonate with and some are over my head or too heady. I finally had to give up on the why, enjoy they mystery, and just say, “It just is.”
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I was like that as a child and my questions never ceased. My favorite was what is the meaning of life? As a younger person I meant mostly my life( how to live) but as I evolved it morphed into why life or what is life? Thank you Mary for engaging with me here. I am enjoying our connection.
Thanks for sharing these deep burning questions with us.
You wrote, why not total infinite darkness? There are some people who travel that far in NDEs to experience this total darkness. Only to find out that this is Source, and that it is consciousness and creative potential.
So, asking why there is need for consciousness at all is like asking why there is God.
Btw, questions of Why are difficult to answer.
It makes more sense to ask : How come? Or for what purpose?
So , we can ask, how come that we find ourselves on earth within a meat suit with input channels which pretend that there is world out there consisting of separate things.
And the answer would be that the body is a consequence of the thought of separation taken seriously.
Thought is creative. Thought precedes manifestation. Thought precedes manifestation of the body.
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I realize that the answers I seek are quite elusive Karin, yet they still haunt me from time to time. It is really difficult for me to wrap my head around the notion that Source always was, with no delineations I appreciate your perspective and willingness to walk with me as I attempt to make peace with the unknowable.
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Reblogged this on litebeing chronicles and commented:
I am reblogging this old post because it speaks to my current existential crisis. For new readers, please take some time to read the comments at the end. They are so provocative and insightful. Feel free to add your own to the mix. Namaste
You are not alone in your quest and thirst for answers.. The more I learn, the less I know! which keeps me thirsty for more 🙂 Lovely Post
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Yes, I do remember this post. I don’t have any startling news to add here, so the mystery will stand. The feeling of awe can be overwhelming, but it does keep my curiosity alive and moving. I am inclined to think that the world, the divinity and source of our being and of all, knows no beginning or end.
I try to remind myself of the wonderful opportunity it is to be human and to experience awe – on a good day anyway 🙂
I think that each of us is here in this world to have reflected back to us what we create. The world is a mirror. This is the surest way to understand our innate power as creators, since it is through experience that we can fully appreciate what we’ve created, imperfections and all. Perhaps in the same way, the entire Cosmos mirrors the heart and mind of God. We ARE, therefore we may think, and create, and feel, and love.
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thanks James for sharing your wisdom here on this difficult question. I like the sentiment that you express and perhaps you are correct 🙂
Thank You Linda for liking my Charcoal Drawing!!! 🙂 *Cynthia
It is easy to like your work!
Perhaps life is an experiment, pure play and exploration. Perhaps life has no meaning until we choose to give it meaning, or create a meaning for our own experience. Perhaps total, absolute, infinite darkness was to just too god damn boring… 😉
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I agree that it would be incredibly boring 🙂
Thank You for liking my newest piece Linda!!! 🙂 *Cynthia
As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light in the darkness of mere being. ~ Carl Jung
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thank you Jacob for joining in the conversation. Jung was very wise and ahead of his time. What a beautiful quote.
lovely linda… and quite incredible that IAM also writing a piece about the beginning… of which I will be posting the continuation very soon… All food for thought… Barbara
thanks Barbara ! I was not sure if you had read mine and became inspired but nevertheless it seems that similar ideas find there way here at the same time. I would like to say there is a Divine hand in this phenomenom.
You are in no way alone in this 🙂 I haven’t read all the comments above as yet (I will), but here’s my tuppence thrown in:
Why life? – This is why we have Creation myths, gods, goddesses, superheroes, giants et al. The human race has been pondering this question since the start – maybe in different phrases etc, but that is why we have so many myths, legends, and god/desses… to ANSWER this very question.
We have life because God created it… because X god did this and Y god did that…
No one knows Why Life and I don’t think we ever will know. That’s ok. Its ok to not know everything – that’s what gives life its beautiful mystery 🙂
And trust me, that’s not dark. The questions I have pondered are darker than that, including – wouldn’t beautiful, bountiful Mother Earth be better off without her arrogant, selfish, wasteful, human children? And sometimes the answer I give back terrifies me.
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I guess it is in both of our natures to contemplate what lurks in the darkness. I appreciate your comments and your presence here Heidi xx
Yay! I finally get to comment. My laptop took suddenly very ill…this is my older more trusty Dell..hehe.
All I can say to your question is…Why not?.
Well actually this morning when I read your post, my mind ran and hid in the closet. Didn’t want to even ponder such a question, he said. Gave him a headache because of the immensity of the pondering…then my computer sorta hung too….now I’m glad they did what they did because my answer to your question changed!! 😀
I have always believed that the human mind on it’s own and at the level of where we are as a race would never be able to comprehend or encompass the greatness and vastness of the whole truth. That our lives and God in His loving way has spared us the disaster by allowing life to reveal to us what we need to know, when we need to know it and then too based on the amount of experiences we’ve gathered…giving us the opportunity to decide and choose which path we are to take…which will then lead us to the next point of understanding and revelation. There are times when I feel the whole truth of the matter may be so simple that we may not even believe it if it smacked us on the head! Aren’t we mostly all creatures who love or feel there is a need for complexity? That we second guess ourselves when answers come to us…simply? I know I still do, though not so much any more…but it is still there.
Why life…again I ask…why not? 🙂
Thanks for helping me begin to sort this out. In Quakerism there is a process called a threshing session where folks express their views without worrying about making a decision. This is beginning to take the form of a threshing session of a cosmic nature.
I agree with you about the brain. We use so little of it and that leaves so much room for confusion or error or simple ignorance. Part of the fate of being in a human form is having just enough intelligence to realize that we are not in control at all!
thanks Shree for your thoughtful comments. xx
When I took physics in college we explored this very question. In fact physics is the only branch of science that continually explores the reality of the Divine Source. Here is what we discovered…
Consciousness just happens. There is a well of energy that grows and grows and when it builds up to a certain point a thought occurs. All thoughts are just energy after all. This huge well of energy became a thought and that thought became more thoughts just like our thoughts. Exactly like this blog here with your thoughts. Perhaps one of those thoughts were of life….and that sprang more thoughts about what if there was life, what would it look like, how would it behave, what kinds of chemical reactions would produce it, what would it be really? Those thoughts became so strong that life sprang from it, like the universe and love and hate and light and darkness. Energy begets more energy. This planet happens to be one example of those thoughts that were at one time just energy swirling around. Is this planet the only example of life? That I do not know. But as a scientist that answer seemed okay with me. It made sense to me. Perhaps it will not to you but thank you for reminding me of the miracle of consciousness.
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thank you Lisa for providing a realtable explanation of an intricate process. If only I had taken Physics!
Consciousness just happens. There is a well of energy that grows and grows and when it builds up to a certain point a thought occurs. – this then begs the question, why is there a well of energy?
I am not surprised that science has much to offer and wish I was more scientifically inclined, but I am able to grasp your elegant explanation!
I so appreciate your entering the conversation here!
Energy is the very reason the universe exists. It is simply the interaction of molecules. Energy is why anything exists…and energy is just the reaction between two opposing forces. Any forces. But now you have me questioning what created forces? I recommend you get a book that I have read many times….Coming of Age in the Milky Way by Timothy Ferris. It talks about all of this and now I must reread it however in the back (or maybe the front) there is a timeline of the creation of the universe….the big band and all that occurred down to the nano second. Right now in the Fermie lab and other locales scientists are trying to create and prove why that very first nanosecond happened and they are very close. Perhaps in our life time we will have an answer to the very big question. But I do know there is a Divine Source and for whatever reason there was consciousness from this Divine Source and what follows is what we know today. I picture nothing…absolutely nothing and then all of a sudden two big eyes just opened and all hell broke loose. That consciousness is still evolving and we are watching those thought patterns being played out. To be honest we may never know until we merge once again with that Source. Perhaps our consciousness is just not evolved enough to grasp what is being played out….you have given me much to ponder my dear Linda…thank you.
we aim to please here at litebeing chronicles 🙂
PS, thanks for the reference, I will look into this.
Hello hello, I have to agree with Julianne that we can know darkness only if we know light…
I loved reading Bruce Lipton’s Biology of Belief and Jeremy Narby’s Intelligence in Nature. They both address, in different ways, microorganism’s/simple cells’ incredible ability to group themselves together and create more complex organisms that function and feel as a single being. This really helped me put our existence into a totally different perspective… xox
‘You would not see yourself as a single entity… but as a bustling community of more than fifty trillion individual cells’ (Bruce Lipton) 🙂
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when I first got a glimpse of cells under a microscope I began to become aware that what appears so very small is quite grand and elaborate in scope, a world within a particle, an ocean within a drop of seawater ……
thank you Ms. Shamanictracker for this lovely quote!
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thanks for the references as I am not well read in the physical sciences. Perhaps I can find more clues here. Still seeking the BIG answers however 😉
Excellent question … excellent … and the one that so many philosophies and religious shy away from … because there is no answer, really, is there? In terms of logic, you cannot solve a problem from WITHIN the level or category of the problem. The solution comes from outside/above the problem. As human beings we pose ourselves this question — but it requires a meta-human being to answer it! It requires a ‘mind’ that can know so much more than even the most intelligent, evoplved, spiritually developed human being. Everyone raves about Eckhart Tolle — I can’t stand him, he is so miserable. He writes and says all the ‘right’ things but is there any ‘joy’ in what he upholds? He makes you long for death. And even HE can’t put forward the answer. Wittgenstein …”Whereof on cannot speak, thereof one must be silent ….was more intelligent but still leaves us in limbo. Thank you for raising the subject … issue … etc.
Quote re Wittgenstein from Wikipedia: Proposition 7.[edit source]
As the last line in the book, proposition 7 has no supplementary propositions. It ends the book with the proposition “Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one must be silent.” („Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen.“)
Both the first and the final proposition have acquired something of a proverbial quality in German, employed as aphorisms independently of discussion of Wittgenstein.
Wittgenstein’s conclusion in Proposition 7 echoes the Old Testament words of Jesus ben Sirach (ישוע בן סירא, Yešwaʿ ven Siraʾ): What is too sublime for you, do not seek; do not reach into things that are hidden from you. What is committed to you, pay heed to; what is hidden is not your concern. (Sirach 3: 21-22). Saint Thomas Aquinas addressed ben Sirach—and, by extension, Wittgenstein—in the First Article, First Part, of his Summa Theologica:
I answer that, it was necessary for man’s salvation that there should be a knowledge revealed by God, besides philosophical science built up by human reason. Firstly, indeed, because man is directed to God, as to an end that surpasses the grasp of his reason: The eye hath not seen, O God, besides Thee, what things Thou hast prepared for them that wait for Thee (Isaiah 64:4). But the end must first be known by men who are to direct their thoughts and actions to the end. Hence it was necessary for the salvation of man that certain truths which exceed human reason should be made known to him by divine revelation. Even as regards those truths about God such as reason could have discovered, it was necessary that man should be taught by a divine revaluation; because the truth about God such as reason could discover, would only be known by a few, and that after a long time, and with the admixture of many errors. Whereas as man’s whole salvation, which is in God, depends upon the knowledge of this truth. Therefore, in order that the salvation of men might be brought about more fitly and more surely, it was necessary that they should be taught divine truths by divine revelation. It was therefore necessary that, besides philosophical science built up by reason there should be a sacred science learned through revelation.
Following Aquinas, moral philosophers and theologians have addressed the problem of religious language for centuries. Moreover, there has been extensive commentary on the relationship between the respective treatises of Wittgenstein (Tractatus) and Aquinas (Summa Theologica). In addition, Fergus Gordon Kerr, a Roman Catholic priest of the Order of Preachers founded by Saint Dominic, notes that “theological questions lie between the lines of all of Wittgenstein’s writing. It is hard to think of a great philosopher, at least since Nietzsche, whose work is equally pervaded by theological considerations.”
thank you Josephine for visiting my blog and providing such thoughtful and substantive commentary. Despite your opinion about Tolle, you are very welcome here 🙂
No answers either but the ontological fright is very palpable in my life. We are surrounded by nothingness, nothingness is very real to me. On the other hand, I really embrace it as the seed of all creativity.
Perhaps that begs the question what was the seed that created nothingness ?
Interesting question… if something created nothingness, then what was before the nothingness??
yes, you see how this goes on and on and …
In Gnosis when we studied the Kabbalah ~ (From memory, I will probably have do some googling) The Absolute being Ominpotent, Omipresent was unknown to itself, being that it was everything, it did not know what it was, so it had to step itself down, the first and closest step down was the ain Soph and was a realm of demi gods, and the ain soph aur, and then it stepped down into the sephiroth of the tree of life…blah blah blah its really been along time but basically stepped itself down into this vesicles that we know inhabit and this polarity system. To know what it is and to know what it isn’t.
That is a really rough and probably grossly inaccurate condensed version. My personal belief is that we are possibly just an illusion or matrix and one of many that run but it is all just a mystery.
Oh look! I Googled and found it all from my Gnostic Sect, or the one I studied, I should say. That correct all my inaccuracies.
As far as the why, that always just made sense to me, not saying that it is the answer, but a possibly one. Good musing and good pictures.
Oops typo misspelled Kabbalah~
Thanks honey bunny!
thank you Sindy,
I will check out the link. Glad for your input and mention of Kabbalah and Gnosticism, of which I have limited exposure. Love the melting pot/tapestry nature of our blogosphere.
Love the melting pot nature of our blogosphere, how poetic. 😀
You nailed it Linda!!! This has always been a primary question for me. It seems so odd that we should be, or anything should be for that matter.
I don’t know if that question has an answer, but I think that meditating on it will send chills up and down your spine if you let the question penetrate your being. It is so amazing that we are here and we know we’re here, yes?
Thank goodness someone else gets it, yea! Debra I am so glad that I am not all alone with this nagging question. When I spend any amount of time with this, chills do move up and down my spine ( sometimes literally) It is amazing that we are here , but I yearn to know more …
It is very comforting to me that you posted this! I had been calling it, Ontological Fright. 🙂
wow, it even has a name!
I am glad that this post has been comforting to you. My worry was that it would terrify many readers. Yet I decided ultimately that it was worth posting anyway.
I remember discussing this with my analyst (back in the 90’s), and I told him that I called it ontological fright and he looked at me and said nothing for a few seconds and said to me, “I’ve never heard it put that way before.”
It’s true for me though, the simple fact of being alive can creep you out if you think about it.
Especially when you’re on the beach at night, listening to the ocean roar with just a few friends.
No matter how many ways there are to explain who we are, where we come from, blah, blah, blah, when you allow yourself not to be convinced by any of the answers provided, it feels intensely weird that we’re here.
Okay, I hope I am not creeping anyone out! I guess on a positive note, we can be that much more grateful for having been given the life we have?
no you are not creeping me out, you are “seeing ” me and my existential angst! 🙂
🙂 likewise my friend!
I’m pondering how to respond, Linda! It might be awhile 😉
I am grateful for your interest and am happy to wait for your response. 🙂
Maybe what Is is neither light nor darkness, as those are terms of our minds in this realm of duality. Look into a blinding light and one becomes blind/all becomes darkness. Become lost in a a pitch black deep cave, and the eyes begin to see white light. If the underlying reality, even that of consciousness, which is a vibration of energy, is One, then there is neither light nor dark, but both, either, and neither, but it can manifest itself in infinite ways.
thank you Julianne for your remarks. You make some good points, especially about light creating darkness and darkness creating light.