This post originally appeared here in December 2015.
I’m not for abstractions. I like things on the bottom shelf, put in simple terms. And though I’m not often the best at it, I aspire toward clarity.
Which brings me to god.
It seems in our faithful efforts to define who god is, we’ve resigned to impart the most basic, overly simplistic and flawed identity: god is everything and everywhere, all the time. The ambiguity is unsettling, leaves room for doubt. No wonder, then, that whatever message god intended for us is likewise dumbed down – be good, go to heaven; be bad, go to hell – misinterpreted, or drowned out completely.
Mired in the hair-pulling between countless entities with convenient and pliable value systems, bitching about who god is and what god meant – and can’t forget the murder and genocide carried out in that effort – is a very clear charge: Be good to each other.
That’s it, to me at least. Not heaven or hell, or saying the right prayers, or living a life “according to god’s plan”, not even spiritual salvation. All it’s ever been: one billion Sunday sermons and several hundred pages of scripture distilled into a single, foundational directive that has proved more than enough work for us to handle.
Be good to each other, always.