Christian de Quincey, who is affiliated with the Institute of Noetic Sciences tackles a similar question in his recent article, “The Soul of Matter: All the Way Down.” It was actually a book de Quincey wrote in 2002 (re-released in 2010 as Radical Nature: The Soul of Matter) that introduced me to the process philosophy of Alfred North Whitehead, the subject I’m currently studying in my doctoral program at Claremont Lincoln University. In the article, de Quincey writes:
What’s the greatest mystery facing every person on the planet? Ultimately, it’s some version of the age-old “Where do I come from? Why am I here? Where am I going?” And these questions, which lie at the heart of all philosophy and religion, can be summed up as, “How do I fit in?” How do we humans (with our rich interior lives of emotions, feelings, imaginations, and ideas) fit into the world around us—a world that is supposed to be made up of mindless, soulless physical atoms and energy? That’s a scientific question. And, so far, no one has produced a satisfactory explanation.
We lack an explanation because our questions already assume something quite disturbing. We assume we are split from nature. We assume that humans are somehow special, that we have minds or souls while the rest of nature does not.
Because of our assumed “specialness,” because of the deep fissure between humans and the rest of nature, because of the mind-body split, we need a new understanding of how we—ensouled, embodied humans—fit into the world of nature. Our current worldview, based on the materialist philosophy of modern science, presents us with a stark and alienating vision of a world that is intrinsically devoid of meaning, of purpose, of value—a world without a mind of its own, a world without soul. And this worldview has had dramatic and catastrophic consequences for our environment, for countless species of animals and plants, and for the eco-systems that sustain us all.
I believe we can witness the consequences of the worldview de Quincey describes all around us: in our record usage of anti-depressants, in our blatant disregard for the health of the planet and our fellow citizens, in the disconnection we feel from each other and even from ourselves, and in our addictions to alcohol, drugs, work, sex, or anything else that takes us out of our difficult and disenchanted lives.
But does it have to be this way? What if we could rediscover the connection we’ve always had with the earth and with all beings that inhabit it? What if we could realize we’ve always been connected to a deep Source of living water that will slake our thirst? What if we could tap into a great Wisdom that is yearning to help us through the passages we’re traveling? What if we could feel the love and grace that is being poured out upon us all the time from the One who knows our deepest heart and who is luring us toward our best possibilities? What if we could know – I mean, really know – that we belong in this life, that we are beloved just as we are?
That is what it is to be sacred.
That is what this blog is about.
It’s about experiencing a re-enchanted and revitalized relationship with real life on the ground.
It’s about becoming more whole, more loving, more compassionate and revering all of life as sacred.
It’s about developing “new eyes” to see the hidden wholeness behind the brokenness, loneliness and suffering of life.
It’s about developing a relationship with the living Spirit of God in the world to transform one’s life and one’s heart.
It’s about walking the Way that Jesus walked so as to be able to “live fully and love wastefully”.
It’s about understanding the Natural Spirituality available to all humans and learning the language of God’s Wisdom in the world that speaks to us through dreams, through synchronicities and through the overall Flow of Life.
It’s for people who are hungry for wholeness, who yearn for connection to meaning and a sacred experience of this life, for people who desire to feel the “rapture of the experience of being alive.”
It’s for people who want to trust God even in the face of life’s difficulty and who want to be fed at the “soulular” level by the sacred Source that seeks to fill us.
So here we are. I hope you’ll stick around and join the conversation.