Form without substance

I just watched a video from Quakerspeak which really touched me because I’ve been thinking about this particular topic for a while now. I regularly attend weekly Eucharist at a community where there is an intentional effort to connect form and substance. Then this week I had a chat with a relative who wondered if I believed in God or had similar understanding of salvation that she had. I’m glad we had the discussion because it sent me scurrying back to my roots of belief which are much different that hers.

I’m a contemplative and a mystic. I find God or if you will a higher power not in reading the Bible, nor singing in the choir, not in evangelizing others but simply abiding in silence. I frequently visit Abbey of the Genesee and other quiet places including walks in parks and woodlands. My sister has been trying to get me to watch “The Chosen” which is a series about the life of Jesus of Nazareth. I watched one episode and it really didn’t appeal to me. Some folks get a lot of intellectually knowing Jesus or knowing about him. I’m not one of them. My connection has always been mystical yet for most of my life and I had no way of knowing that or of expressing it. I try to live Matthew 25 and have for most of my life.

This winter and spring I’ve been reading and learning more about Quakers. I recently attended one of their meetings on Zoom. I enjoyed the silence. There were dozens of folks in that virtual meeting. This week’s news about a possible ban on abortions has left me feeling unsettled and betrayed by membership in a church that has a backward and overly simplistic view of the problem. They are the epitome form without substance. I try to love and respect all living beings. I try to avoid hitting animals when I’m driving. I don’t hunt. I believe in restorative justice. I believe in a woman’s right to chose but would pray that they choose life whenever possible. There must be a solution that respects not just the life of the fetus but the life of the mother and the ability of the society at large to take care of both mother and child.

Here is the video I liked.

About Don Watkins

I'm a FOSS advocate, writer, educator, Python coder, Linux user, US Navy Veteran, Secular Franciscan, husband,father and grandfather. I blog about my life and experiences that give it meaning.
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