A quirky mix of thoughts this evening. My attention divided between the antics of my daughter, the haunting sense-memory of sorghum syrup, and the "nine billion names of God". I cannot tell you clearly which mesmerized me more, although I concede that the edge goes to my daughter. She is a thoughtful lass, but carries with her a playfulness that I allow may be my saving grace in this world. We were watching Food Network on television, and she has a fascination with diner cuisine and far-out places. She now wants to try goose and crème brûlée. I have no quarrel with that culinary ambition.
Something on there inspired in me a hankering for sorghum. I've not had it in years, and I think the Southern spirits in my palate are hungering for it yet again. Having been contemplating renewing my old habit of baking a weekly skillet of corn bread, to be anointed with butter, the yen for sorghum was a given. I found myself craving a hot slab of fresh cornbread, butter melting down the sides, and a generous lashing of the sweet syrup drizzled over all that goodness. Simple pleasure. In my mind, I was sitting at a rough wooden table, eating my corn bread by the light of a camp lantern. At hand was a book I was reading.
While daydreaming of this communing with the senses, simple pleasure of a simple meal, the background hum of weeks of subconscious meditation sharpened into focus. Awareness. The realization of what had been on my mind, just out of awareness, ringing out like a temple bell. The act of association: time with daughter = simple pleasure = knowing God.
How can this be? I'm still determining what, if any, relationship I have with God. Or Allah. Or Jehovah, Yahweh, Krishna...certainly, It was not on my living room, not on my couch watching television with the blood of my blood!. No, it was more convoluted than it appeared. Shock. Knowing that I have been pondering this problem of the names of God. Too much input from the Internet and television news. Too many fractious messages, images of bigotry and hate, violence perpetrated in the name of a creator claimed to be known by so many, yet misunderstood by nearly all.
In the name of God/Allah/Jehovah/Krishna...so much ignorance, division and hate spread throughout the world. Using that which should unify us all (a benevolent force directed by Love) as a wedge to exclude, divide, separate. To cut themselves off from the joy of this creation and living thoughtful lives filled with love. To pretend We Are Chosen, and You Are Not. This troubled me, this universal cutting off the nose to spite the face. Messages of hate masquerading as acceptable opinions to be foisted on us as policies to guide our lives. I thought of this all, wondering as I did at the impossibility of knowing all the names of God.
The impossibility of us claiming we know, and trying to force it upon those who observe this life through lenses not our own, and pretending this makes it right.
I wondered why so many waste their time and energy trying to convert everyone else to the justness of their cause and thereby spend a life in bitter discontent. I wondered, because I knew then that I will never know all the names of God. But more importantly, I knew and will know Love, if I care to listen to the laughter of my daughter, and recall the sweetness of the creation in a dollop of sorghum.