Friday, July 17, 2009

The Nature Of My Faith.

MrSponsorPants has posted today upon faith, and it's an excellent reading - as always with his posts, thought-provoking:

Mr. SponsorPants

I read his post while waiting for the coffee to drip, and after I got a cup, went out and wandered my garden with it in hand, admiring the beauty, doing a bit of hybridising of daylilies, and all the while, thinking about my faith.

Just how do I discover what my unconscious beliefs about my Higher Power are?

I have "trust issues" - love that little phrase, it's such a tidy little packaging of what is in truth, a prodigious, ungainly, slovenly beast of a problem in my life. I've worked on my trust issues for most of the years that I've been in Al-Anon, and I have come to one recent conclusion: I cannot eradicate my personal experience and knowledge, of the horrors of which some human beings are capable.

I know it firsthand; I've been the object of the striking fist. When I was too small to defend myself, I was abused by those in control of my life at the time - birth parents, foster parents, adopted parents. It happened. I cannot, regardless of how much recovery I gain, change my past. My memories of childhood are what they are - fear and physical pain figure prominently in them. I will never have had a sunny, happy childhood.

I believe that for years in program, I laboured under the misconception that I could secure a certain level of recovery where I, too, could have a completely positive opinion of human nature, and until I attained that, I wasn't working my program enough/correctly/insert judgemental adjective.

This mirage I was aiming for, interfered with my recovery in ways I couldn't begin to grasp at the time, but which are now becoming evident.

I had accepted my past, I had forgiven, as much as I am able at this point, my abusers, what I hadn't accepted, was the fact that my experience was ineradicable. I am never going to not know what some people can do to those weaker than themselves.

I was trying to make myself over from the beginning, instead of starting from the day I was in. I was also trying to force myself to believe something I just did not believe - that all people are inherently good, and will act in positive ways, if only given the chance. I wrestled that demon for so many years, always losing, because where was I to put the reality of my own experiences?

When my trust issues reared their ugly heads, what was I to do with them? Try to pretend I didn't see those repulsive snouts peeking out from the shrubbery, or smell that beastly smell wafting on the wind?

Can I set aside this wierd prerequisite I've been carrying, this idea that until I achieve a 100% sunny opinion of other people, I'm not working my program properly? Where did I get this idea, anyway? No matter, I've got it, and I've only just become aware of it, so what am I to do with the damn thing?

Turn it over. Let it go. Put it down, and step back to get a better view of it.

Which brings me full circle to the nature of my faith. Maybe all these years that I've been praying for God to remove this knowledge which colours my view of human beings, it's been like praying to him to remove from me the memory of the fact that I once lived in another city - short of using catastrophic brain damage, or Alzheimers, to achieve that, just what do I expect from Him, anyway?

Even God cannot change the past, or our memories of it. All these years that I've been asking Him to do so, I've been putting a barrier between us, labelled "Expectation, without the fufillment of which, full access is denied."

1 comment:

  1. I see such insight into your condition and maybe even into the human condition in this post.

    I pray you find some measure of peace with your past.

    I agree, we can't change our past, but we can grow spiritually despite it.