Friday, July 19, 2013

What is a Miracle? Everything is a Miracle

Friday, July 19, 2013

I dropped by my chiropractor’s office today to pick up the x-rays that were taken over two years ago in the wake of my car accident in March, 2011.  I picked them up for an appointment I have scheduled next Monday with a local institute focused on back and neck health.

As I made my way home after meeting with a friend I reflected on all the obstacles and challenges I have faced in my life.  I believe it is truly a miracle I am alive today.  I do not exaggerate.  I survived a childhood that featured my mother suffering a schizophrenic breakdown, stepsisters who verbally abused me and a stepmother who made multiple attempts on my father’s life.  I also survived the impact of the corruption that allowed my stepmother to go free with no conviction for her crime.

In addition, I survived the homophobia and ignorance all too common in the state I grew up in.  That state is Texas.  Texas has been in the news recently because of its efforts to restrict abortion.  This is nothing new.  Texas politics is often dominated by hypocritical people who call themselves Christians while they busily work to oppress any number of minorities.  Jesus was not a prophet who advocated the oppression of people; he advocated love, forgiveness and inclusivity.  It’s amazing how much his message has been warped over the centuries.  Christians who advocate the oppression of others are not Christians.

As I noted in a previous posting I once lived and worked on a Native American reservation.  I have seen deep despair and pain in the lives of many, many marginalized people.  I have survived two car accidents.  And I narrowly escaped being in a car accident as a very young man; I did not see a stop sign (because it was essentially concealed by foliage) and drove into an intersection.  Had I done that about seven seconds later I would have been broadsided by an oncoming car.  Yes indeed I think it miraculous I am alive today.

I have been reflecting on the idea of miracles lately.  Formal institutions like the Catholic Church have their own definitions for phenomena like miracles.  I believe their definition is not correct.  The Catholic Church has been wrong many a time before; it is thus clear it is capable of significant error.

In my opinion miracles are everywhere and can be seen each and every day.  What is the amazing process of photosynthesis if not a miracle?  Could the most brilliant human being have dreamed up the intricate process by which plants fix sunlight and convert that energy for their own use?  How could we dream up such an amazing process?  And such is also true of the many aspects of our planet.  Consider rain, lightning, dew and wind.  These are all amazing forces that have been present on the planet for countless millennia.  But I believe there are many more miracles than what you see in the flora and fauna of the planet.

Each living human being is a unique and miraculous creation.  Each of us is composed of so many cells that developed special qualities while we were still in the womb.  Our bodies perform countless functions without our conscious awareness.  We sleep, eat, walk, think, exercise and dream.  And our bodies heal without needing us to direct that healing process with deliberate thought.  Have you ever had to order blood cells to rush to a cut in your finger?

Do you even know how amazing it is that you exist at all?  An amazing collection of events had to take place for you to come into this world.  For you to be born your parents had to meet somehow.  And they had to be born.  And your parents only came to be because four originally unrelated people came together and later became the people you would eventually know as your grandparents.  The further back in your ancestral history you travel the more astonishing the story becomes because more and more people were involved in ultimately joining together to later produce you.  The odds were stacked against all of us.  The chances were remote.  And yet here we are.

I do believe it is possible to heal.  I do believe it is possible to overcome the meanest, harshest, most painful of circumstances.  It certainly might not be easy but I believe it can be done.  I survived many tragic and painful experiences when they actually came to pass.  I believe I can work through the impact they had on me now.  It might not be easy but I believe I can do it.

The greatest healer in this world is Love.  I ask love to find me and hold me in its tender and eternal embrace.

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