Throughout my 20’s and early 30’s I fancied myself the “Great Artist”, my ego swelling with each affirmation. When people gave me the compliment; “You have a God given talent”, I would respond with; “If you knew how hard I worked to hone my abilities you wouldn’t say such a stupid thing!” During my mid 20’s I read “The Fountainhead” by Ayn Rand. Howard Roark was my hero even though he was fictitious. In my enormous delusion I began to model myself after him.
That is one example of how deluded an egomaniac can become. Through a series of events brought upon myself as a direct result of this delusion, I was reduced to a hollow shell of a man by the age of 40. I came within a hairs breadth of succumbing to ‘Wet Brain’ as a direct result of my attempt to drink myself to death. I didn’t have the guts to do it outright so I decided to take the cowards way out. Then one day I woke up in the Intensive Care Unit wondering where I was and how I got there.
It was a shock to finally see an MRI – a black mass the shape of my brain with a white shunt leading from its center. The shunt in this instance is a hollow tube leading from the center of my brain where there is a pocket into which the spinal fluid flows. This tube leads out of my skull underneath the skin, wraps around my ear and leads down into my stomach into which the overflow of spinal fluid is released.
The physical aspect of this ailment is negligible to the point of being nonexistent. When I describe myself as being a hollow shell of a man, I mean that with every nuance of meaning. I was absolutely helpless and absolutely hopeless. To this day I still remain beyond human aid. I was spiritually, quite literally in the depths of hell. And, because I had alienated myself from God, I was utterly alone.
I was lead by the Spirit to a gathering of men and women who engage in a daily regimen of prayer and meditation and both together and individually seek an ever deepening love relationship with our Creator, the Spirit of the Universe. We gather together quite often and share our experiences with one another.
A few years ago the pastor of a church I was attending gave me several books to read on spirituality. In every one of those books the idea was expressed that as individuals, we each need to be broken before we can come before God. That was particularly poignant because the gathering of men and women whom I met with insist on the same principle as the foundation upon which to base our relationship with the Creative Spirit most of us refer to as God.
I have read the Bible cover to cover twice and am in the process of reading it a third time. Quite often I need to read and re-read a paragraph over and over until I gain a semblance of its meaning. It is the first thing I do when I get up each day. Small particles of wisdom are being revealed to me continually through this process.
I have recently become involved in a church study group which bases its teaching on the Twelve Steps in relation to Biblical passages. The first step; “We admitted we were powerless, that our lives had become unmanageable.” - has for its Biblical source Romans 7:18 – “I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.”
The Beatitudes in Matthew 5:3-12 regarding attachment are relentless and unequivocal. Beginning with; “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” - is an affirmation of the truth of my relationship with the Almighty.
Several years ago I took my two sons to a museum of technology. We viewed an Imax movie while there. First of all, the enormous size of the screen is impressive. The film began with a pan over the continent of Europe. Gradually we moved ever closer to the surface of the country of France. A village began to appear from a distance. As the buildings became larger a courtyard came into view. As we moved closer to the surface of the courtyard a circle of children playing came into view. We moved down into the center of the children playing looking up at them.
I can’t remember anything about the narration. The imagery was so awesome it is the only thing I can remember. The camera moved up from among the children above the village once again. Now the view changed to the surrounding country and began to move in closer and closer to a bog or swamp. Down on the surface of the water a plant came into focus and began to become larger and larger until it filled the entire screen. We then penetrated a leaf. First we moved through the cellular structure of the plant and deeper into the molecular structure of the plant until a DNA molecule came into view. We moved deeper, ever deeper into a carbon molecule until atoms appeared. We continued moving through the electrons circling the nucleus of an atom on into the nucleus where subatomic particles began to appear.
At this point we were only getting started. From there we moved back through the electrons, carbon molecule, DNA molecule, cells and then out of the leaf. The leaf became smaller as the bog became smaller, the country became smaller, the continent became smaller, the surrounding oceans became smaller and suddenly we were above the entire planet. We moved past the moon out into space where the sun and the planets in our solar system became visible. Continuing to move further and further out into space our solar system became smaller and smaller until the sun which was the only visible part of our solar system, became a sparkle of light among the vast array of stars in the sky and then disappeared.
We continued to move out beyond our Milky Way until other clusters of stars like our Milky Way became visible. At this point we began to move back toward home, toward our planet moving into our Milky Way through the clusters of stars until the sun of our solar system appeared as a pinpoint of light. Our sun then began to appear larger and larger until the planets of our solar system became visible. We then moved past our moon toward earth. Our planet then filled the screen once again and the Atlantic ocean and the continent of Europe became larger as the country of France became larger until we were once again on the pavement of the courtyard looking up at the circle of children playing.
I use this experience as an illustration of our smallness. The suns mass equals 332,946 earths. Our sun is a relatively small star. Mu Cephi is about 1,500 times the size of our sun. So what is the significance of all of this? In the vast configuration of things, our planet is nothing more than a speck of dust. As large as earth is compared to me, that makes me little more than an amoeba attached to that speck of dust in relation to all of creation.
I believe the Spirit of the Universe is everywhere, that this Spirit is Omnipresent, Omniscient and Omnipotent. 1 Corinthians 15:28 tells us that the Spirit is all in all. There is nowhere the Creator isn’t. On the most intimate, personal level, the Spirit of God is within each of us. In the final analysis it is only there He may be found.
The God whom I love, revere and try my best to obey is so immense and awesome it is absolutely beyond my comprehension.
And so, after my ego was deflated to a human level, I then began my spiritual journey which continues to lead me to an ever deepening, intimate love relationship with the Spirit of our Universe. I like you am a child of our Creator. Not only that, but we are all of us beloved children of our Creator. How can a being so immense love anything so small as a human being? That is a question that could drive an obsessive compulsive individual like myself mad if I let it.
The only answer that I can even ponder is found in the holy name of our Creator; יהוה - YHVH – the closest pronunciation of this most holy, blessed name is Yahweh which translates into I Am, I Was and I will always Be. Yahweh – The Great I Am – wants nothing more from us than to be - as Yahweh simply IS. I will discuss this mystery in greater detail in a future article.
Other articles in this series are:
Synopsis of the First Four Beatitudes
Blessed are the Poor in Spirit, for Theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven
Blessed are Those Who Mourn, for they Will Be Comforted
Blessed are the Meek, for they Will Inherit the Earth
Blessed are Those Who Hunger and Thirst for Righteousness, for They Will Be Filled
Blessed are the Merciful for They Will be Shown Mercy
Blessed are the Pure in Heart for They Will See God
You can Order 18 1/2” x 12 1/2” fine art prints by Curt Doll for only $35.00 plus shipping of course. Everyone of these works of art are a product of an intimate and personal collaboration with my Beloved. I was the instrument which my Beloved used to create these works of art. Without my Beloved, I am infinitely less than a puff of smoke.
Curt has been a professional artist since 1977. www.curtisgraphics.com