You know, I remember talking about this weirdness to a friend some time ago (long before I knew what was going on) and she said, "It sounds like people are seeing the holy spirit in you." I couldn't relate to that term. I had spent years looking for the holy spirit (the christian brand) and came away empty handed. Nothing. Zip. Nada. I spit on the god of the bible and the horse he rode in on, so I wasn't exactly a candidate for conversion. (by which I mean "enlightenment" - and nothing more)
Do you still feel empty handed?
After my experience with this spirit I call holy I went to church, and that experience was something of a downer. I still go every once in a while but I'm just not all that wild about it. I like the music, the sonorous voices. I feel the inner strength of the older ladies and gentlemen who have all come through their own personal tests of fire and faith, and feel the love and the hope of the mothers and fathers for their young children squirming in their seats through what is, even for me, something of a boring ceremony. From my first experiences with it, the ceremony, or service, just wasn't matching up to the in-streaming of love / light I was experiencing. It didn't seem to be coming from the same place, although in that whole spirit of Oneness business, it is. However, Communion was of the utmost importance for me. There was something very mysterious about the wafer and the wine, that transubstantiation, that I just had to be a part of. I have only a few ideas about what that's all about, but I felt that I just had to have it. I'd seen bona-fide intelligent-willed demons, or devils, and non-humans that follow in their wake hoping to rise in their ranks if I should be infected and taken, and they were writing things on concrete and brick walls that would only show up as I passed by. It was so unreal that I felt as if I were living in someone's movie. I also felt that some portions of help available to me from those far more knowledgeable and experienced than I am was being withheld until I joined in the body of Christ. What's odd is that no one, not once, ever said to me, "This is what you must do." I suppose I had to figure out a way, my way, on my own about these things. This was something of a humbling lesson for me; that I don't know everything, that I can't solve all of my problems alone, and that help is available, both overt and subtle from so many parts of the universe that it's almost funny, but that I had to take some steps to acknowledge this, and ask for assistance and guidance. Learning to say, "Thank you," didn't seem to hurt, either. Sometimes help comes and I can see it with my own eyes. It's astonishing. I've seen beings stand between me and that thing so that I can sleep at night. That part in the Bible about showing me things that I knew not is scary accurate. Sometimes I have to get off my lazy ass and go out and meet the help. Get out of doors and walk around, feel the warmth, the chill, see the sun, smile at the passers-by, the babies, and laugh with the check-out clerks at the grocery store. And sometimes, it seems, help is kind of busy right now and I just have to wait.
But there is this thing about organized religious faith in its current configuration that bothered me. There was this minister who spent an inordinate amount of time shouting and railing against other peoples when it seemed to me that more time could be spent, and better spent, teaching us about love, that gift to and from every one of us and personal choice we make, every moment of every day, how we express it. I realized that I had to take what was good for me to hear away with me, but that there were even greater portions of this minister's distortion or illusion of faith / teaching that didn't necessarily apply to me. I knew that I had to find my own way, so to speak, and that it may just be a while before I encountered anyone like me.
It is still that holy spirit that's a part of me, and may or may not be that weirdly wonderful (to me, anyway) Christian brand that has in some way touched you, but I think what's happening is that people are thinking, learning, and hopefully teaching that this holy spirit can be interpreted in an entirely new and very personal way, not guided word-for-word by the epistles of the apostles of the Bible. Although the words of Christ still rock. Even after all these distortions and the watering-down of years.
What DanB writes about about the sun and gazing at it is very interesting. The sun is alive, and so I can very well imagine how nurturing and healing its rays are in reception.
I really can't explain why, but I feel so happy and so hopeful for you, Ocean. I know sometimes it's rough, but in whatever you choose remember: you've got the love. Be well and good luck to you.
"Oh where have you been, my blue-eyed son? Where have you been, my darling young one?" - Roxy Music (B. Dylan)