Sunday, April 20, 2008

Conversations with Evangelicals

It's true that I was in a spiritually generous mood yesterday, having just taught Reiki. In fact during class I talked a lot about the importance of prayer, something I think of as a structure in which it's possible to talk with God. Through prayer I develop my relationship to the divine, cultivate intimacy. The benefits of that intimacy include the ability to access trust. It's well worth the practice. Just like Rabbi Manewith taught us, I believe that the structure and content of individual prayer is not as important as sincerity. After praying, my student said my aura looked like a shiny egg made from layers of bright gold and crystal. Prayer cleans the auric body, yes.

So when I sat down at the market counter at Eastern Market to enjoy my crabcakes and read my book, I was feeling open and connected. I think that's why - and how - I got to talking with the lovely young evangelical Christian who was sitting next to me.

It was an interesting exchange. I was respectful, but honest, and so was she. We agreed to disagree about our obvious differences, like the fact that she believes with all her heart that I (and everyone else who doesn't share her faith), will burn and suffer for eternity in Hell. That's a rather harsh fate, coming from a compassionate God, don't you think? I asked. She said it would not be loving of her to keep silent about my inevitable, miserable eternity of pain and torture. Hmmm. That was the end of that topic. Instead of battling over my soul's destiny, we explored areas in which we could make common ground. She asked questions and listened carefully. I did too. I didn't let myself get insulted, she didn't get self righteous. There was no finger pointing. It was a real interfaith dialog. In the end she told me she doesn't believe she can change anyone's mind, only the Lord can do that, to use her words. Very cool to hear an evangelical say she's not out to convert non-Christians. How refreshing!

After that I went to a friend's house to read tarot cards for her. All in all, it was a very nice day of spiritual connection and inquiry. The resonance from seeing the Pope continued through yesterday. Crazy, isn't it?

Happy Passover, ya'all!

Pollen streaks on an SUV, Mass. Ave. NE - and Jake


d. chedwick bryant said...

Happy Passover, Darling...and I must say, I love the look of those pollen streaks. Pollen--can't live with it, can't live without it!

Barbara said...

Tolerance and understanding seem to help most everything in life. People come at God in many different ways. I often picture God smiling as He watches our tortuous paths that are so dissimilar, many of which end in the same place.

At least this was a better encounter than your last one with the big bus full of conservatives several years ago. Remember that?

Steve said...

Wow. I am impressed that you handled that exchange so well...I must admit I get instinctively defensive when I find myself in conversation with an evangelical. (Especially one who, like my aunt, informs me I'm going to hell.) It's terrific that you could find common ground.

That is a LOT of pollen! Holy cow!

Reya Mellicker said...

Yes, Barbara, I remember! And I too think of God (when I imagine that energy has a personality) as being very amused by all our machinations. Oh yeah.

Happy full moon, ya'll. Get out there and howl!

mouse (aka kimy) said...

what is it with the burning, suffering and damnation!?

beautiful dogwood blossoms and aaaaachoooo!

Reya Mellicker said...

I don't understand the attraction - especially imagining most of the people on earth suffering like this for eternity.


phd girl said...

That last photo made me sneeze--but you know, it looks like cloth, and Jake looks like he'd like to travel on.