Thoughts from Fr. Marshall - All Saints Episcopal Church
I don't believe much. I am also not very interested in what people believe.

Frankly, I think most people's beliefs are best transcended. For the most part, in my experience, beliefs keep people form experiencing.

I think many things and I believe a few. I believe that we are capable of experiencing love and that we are therefore capable of experiencing oneness with the ground of all being. In our tradition we call this absolute essence of the kosmos God.

We point toward the possibility of this direct experience using all that we have available to us, that is, metaphor. Our life is filled with this use of metaphor. It appears in beautiful language, art, music but also in science and philosophy. Every epistemological thing we do, that is, every thing we do in an attempt to know and understand, is directed toward this final goal of union, communion, with this absolute reality.

Jesus, our teacher, told us we find it within, "the kingdom of God is within." In him we believe we  have our perfect example. We believe that the Divine Image, in which we are all created, is completely and perfectly reveled in all situations and under all pressures in the life, teachings and example of Jesus.

He is our guide and example, but we must look inside ourselves and experience this Divine Image in our own lives. The Holy Spirit is here to inspire and guide us into this direct experience which we call heaven and we can begin to experience it here and now for it is here, now, "the kingdom of God is at hand."

The kingdom is only obscured by our own false consciousness and so we practice, pray, study live in community, in order to purify our consciousnesses.

The way of Jesus is my way. I love the way of Jesus and believe it to be unique. I do not, however, believe it to be only. Who are we to attempt to control or limit the paths to this direct experience? Who or we to try to hem in God with our doctrine or dogma? So, I believe few things. I tend to believe them deeply because they have pointed me toward this experience of the unutterable reality of the Ground of Being.

Love and light,
Lewis Marshall

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