Monday, 27 June 2011
Monday, but not as I knew it
Actually, not a lot has changed, except in my head. I feel somewhat liberated from the past - but some trepidation about the future has crept in... Only to be expected, I suppose.
I thought I would write today on the subject of the book (what else?) Because things run through my mind sometimes on the subject (like, all the time). And what I have been doing for the last nine months in earnest is editing (I completed the book for the first time about eight years ago, and have been changing it ever since, but never as much as this time).
I even edited after I put it on Amazon - not the text, just a few typos. But then I bought a copy myself to check the corrections had gone through (they had), spotted a few more, and then started reading through it... And now I am at it again... I wish I'd explained that a bit better, maybe left that whole bit out.... I could go on like this forever. Because your perspective on life changes, doesn't it, as you age, and some things seem more or less important than they used to, and - and so on. I have left two cups of tea to grow cold since I sat down on the computer this morning. I need to cut down on words...
So anyway, the bit of the book about my sojourn in Israel in particular, and the comments about religion in general have been worrying me. I like my writing to be clear, and when I re-read the book last night it seemed that there was a conflict inherent in my attitude to religion.
Which there would be. I mean, I was Christian until I was ten or eleven, then Jewish, but then after a couple of years of the family going to synagogue, learning Hebrew in Sunday school and so on it sort of fizzled out and nobody practised any sort of religion any more.
I learned about the Holocaust, felt awful (who wouldn't?) and identified with my new race, especially after living in Israel and making some wonderful friends there.
But when religion was discussed, once I was old enough to have an opinion I declared myself to be an agnostic. When I had my breakdowns there was always a religious element involved (I will always cringe at the memory of thinking myself to be the 'Lamb of God'). SO when I got better I veered right away from religion again.
Then I started thinking about spirituality. I have always thought there must be more to the world than what we see. Another dimension, because - well, there just must be. Because otherwise what would be the point. I thought about that for years. And I find that nowadays I do believe in God - well, I call that entity God. Really, I have no idea still, but it seems a safe bet. There is a name for this idea - basically you might as well believe, because you can't lose. I am not that cynical about it though.
I believe there is a God because, in a nutshell, I have my kids and they are so great and I am so happy now. But I know this is not a watertight theory - my friend was quite shocked a couple of years ago when I told her I now believe - she said she had her kid too and that wasn't proof of God's existence for her (and obviously she doesn't love him any less). It just works for me.
But I can't say there is a right or wrong way to worship this God. I have links to the Church through my children who have learned about God at school. I will never say that I am not Jewish because I feel that would be a betrayal of the Jewish race (although a lot of Jews don't see me as Jewish at all because my mother converted, so it is only in my blood through my father's line). I have a little Buddha on my mantelpiece because Buddism is obviously good. And I had a very good friend at University who was a devout Muslim and wrote a wonderful dissertion on the subject of Islamic law, which she was all in favour of. SO Muslims are good too. And Sikhs, obviously (have I left anyone out? Panicking).
It is all very confusing and therefore I try not to ponder it too much. I don't even know my own mind when it comes to religion. But I think what I think and I am happy for others to do the same. Why is there any conflict on the subject? Well, if I was to tackle that I would have to start spouting on about politics and I am sure I could not construct even one coherent sentence on that subject. I'll leave it there.
So, in the book, where I say something like 'Religion and politics are not my thing - I am too ready to see both sides of an argument', that is what I am getting at. These things are big subjects and I am mostly concerned with getting through the day to day stuff in my life. Which I do in my own peculiar way...
But obviously I have thought about it all over the years. Perhaps too much. But not to much effect.
Enough now. I didn't get enough sleep last night so I am going to get back to thinking about something normal now. Like the washing.