Formation of faith
Thursday, January 11, 2018
Most of my faith formation has been in the Roman Catholic tradition — Catholic elementary school, scripture study with priests, retreats with women religious and much reading of "approved" books and journal articles.
However, some of my understanding of God I received from Protestants, Buddhists, Hindus, Sufis, Baha'is, Humanists, Moslems, Wiccans, Atheists and maybe a few others I'm not remembering right now.
You see, I have participated in the Interfaith Alliance of Eastern North Carolina for several years and have met amazing people who are the face of God to me. And this face of God is not limited to the male gender.
In the Bible, God is imaged as feminine and masculine as well as gender neutral images like rock, living water, blowing wind, fire etc, etc. To say that God is male elevates men over women.
The great mystic Meister Eckhart, born in 1260, was accused of heresy and investigated by the Inquisition. He is according to the Vatican, "a good and orthodox theologian." And to quote the great man, "... God lies on a maternity bed giving birth to all. God is creating this whole universe full and entire in this present moment."
Thus God can be imaged as a woman. However, God is spirit and has no gender. Gender belongs to the material universe. We humans use gender images because they help us understand the nature of the holy one.
Our next Interfaith meeting is 7 p.m. on Jan. 22 at the Unitarian Church. Our topic is "How Marrying Science and Religion Will Transform Your Life and Our World." And how wonderful and good it would be if our world was transformed to the image and likeness of Christ Sophia — God's Holy Wisdom. Come and see! I welcome your questions, critiques and comments.