Believe in nothing, no matter who says it, even if I say it, if it does not agree with your own experience and your own common sense ~ Buddha

Last week I was working with a healer who asked my what word she should use.


“What word? You know, God, Tao, Source — what word do you prefer to denote the creative force in the universe?”

“Um. Universe is fine. I’m pretty impartial.”

I thought that was pretty clever of her to take note of her client’s preferences on the matter. Even though they all mean essentially the same thing, each word carries enough baggage that when confronted with it in a charged situation, people cannot help but rummage through it until they are reassured.

And although I’ve long shook my head at people who laugh at the idea of chi but instead believe in the Holy Ghost, or any one of a million variations thereof, I know that I will mentally rewrite every sentence containing the word God, because I tell myself that it needlessly anthropomorphizes what I believe to be a force of nature. (Never mind that I anthropomorphize everything from my pets to the rutted road leading up to my house. Consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds...)

That’s what it comes down to when we start to pick apart the beliefs of others. We demand consistency when we can’t even maintain it in ourselves.

I wonder what you call it when you don’t believe in any creative force beyond causality?


Comments on: "On Non-denominational Philosophy" (4)

  1. The Which Than Which There Is No Whicher, as Alan Watts said.

  2. I don’t call it anything. In fact, I suspect it may not even be helpful to envision a single “creative force”. The Tao that can be grasped is not the Tao and all that.

    Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go stroke my long white beard while sitting on my mountaintop.

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