There are two well-known hypotheses – death survival and immortal life. You may find the idea of living forever a bit daunting. If you were to continue to exist, what you would be doing with yourself all that time? Actually, if true, it would be much more than a long time: it would be – … Continue reading Immortal life – Not forever surely?
Emotions can run high in the debate between religion and science. Just take a look at the high-profile campaign in the United States to teach ‘Intelligent Design’ in schools. But is conflict inevitable because both sides are showing blind faith in their own version of reality? Blind faith of scientists who deny a purposive life … Continue reading Blind faith – Science or religion?
Nine-eleven was an act of cruelty as was the setting up of Guantanamo Bay torture centre. These recent acts of human cruelty are part of a long history of man’s inhumanity to man. The massacres, looting and capturing of slaves by forces led by Attila the Hun in 5th century eastern Europe; the unrestricted bombing of civilians living in cities like Gunernica during the Spanish civil war; the starvation, brutal treatment and extermination of Jews, and other victims of persecution in the Nazi concentration camps.
Human cruelty of course goes on all the time perhaps in less dramatic ways and in a much smaller scale than these. Malicious gossip can destroy a personal reputation; spiteful actions can result in huge distress; nasty comments within close relationships can cause longstanding wounds. Why do people feel so full of contempt, or want revenge to act out their feelings in such cruel ways?
John was going through an inner life crisis. But he could not fathom what was wrong. He and his wife were comfortably well off and had got the house as they wanted it. He had always been a confident person. Outwardly in their lives nothing much had changed. Inner life problems But, now for the … Continue reading Inner life crisis – What does it mean?
We can’t all escape to a cave to gaze at our navels all week in silent contemplation. That’s the trouble – we can’t get away from life itself with its daily frustrations and setbacks. It’s what takes away our peace of mind. The fact that we have a burning desire for certain things means that we are likely to feel tense or angry if anything turns up to prevent us having them. Sometimes the meaning of life is hard to fathom and the mystery of peace of mind is no exception. There is a fascinating Taoist story that gives us a clue ….
Some people wonder whether human beings can change. Another way of putting it is to ask whether they can find spiritual healing. I would suggest that the answer depends on our view of human nature. We all know that there are differences in the temperaments of children. Some cry more easily and some sleep less soundly. As the child … Continue reading Healing of the spirit – How?
To many people, work seems to be a humdrum monotonous time that goes on and on involving much the same thing day after day. Spiritual healing is needed in some work places. It is true that being a small cog in a big factory or organisation, it may be hard to see that we are contributing any real service to the community but people can assume that other jobs like house-keeping, gardening or labouring are necessarily uninteresting.
The attitude we bring to a job can have a big effect on whether or not we find it boring. Do we have negative or positive reasons for what we are doing at work?
An occupation can exercise a positive pull on some workers as when it brings its own rewards for them. One example is the opportunity to learn on the job.
We hear of thousands of ordinary people who have lost their lives or been severely traumatised by civil war, terrorism, ethnic cleansing, invasion, slavery and so on. Where is the meaning of life in this innocent suffering? If humankind has a humane spirit of care, generosity and goodwill that respects the rights of others, where does social coercion and violent aggression come from? If there is an all-powerful divine force within the universe, why are tyrants and suicide bombers allowed to cause such misery?
Similar questions arise in connection with natural events. Some people in the world, through no fault of their own, have experienced devastating earthquake, like the one in Haiti, not to mention volcanic eruption, tsunami, hurricane, flood, or famine. These events can result in much suffering and many casualties. And then there is disease. Which of us, during the course of our lives, will have to endure serious injury, congenital disability, or progressive, mental or terminal illness?
The creator seems careless about creation. If there is a perfect force that made the natural world, why are there imperfections in nature?