I base everything I say below on my personal awakening.
It may be irrelevant to you.
To read on you must be open to ideas that differ from yours.
My Father was an Orthodox Jew when I was born and turned to Reformed Judaism when I was older.
The Rabbi at Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim Synagogue placed more emphasis on action in the World over ritual in the Temple.
More pointedly, he taught that mercy is the heart of the law and the soul of faith.
This is also the heart of the Gospel.
For me, the Gospel reveals an evolving God that felt that he/she/it had to incarnate under the worst conditions possible.
He said that he was the light of the World which suggests that the world that he entered lived in spiritual darkness.
The light of the world is the light of mercy and justice.
Mercy requires us to use our minds and souls to know the
sufferings of another.
If each of us truly felt the horror of waking up to a city in flames we would have no shock and awe campaigns.
We would not rejoice in our savage victories.
The practice of Tikkun Olam requires us to unite with each other
to become God’s light.
God chose to suffer as a mortal.
Our bodies are often needlessly wracked with pain.
That question is as profound as the mystery of faith.
I believe in a perfect God in a perfect universe that is still evolving
to become more perfect.
People of faith know that dogma and rhetoric are meaningless.
They are word games and winning a game is not the same as
winning in life.
To win in life we must often drop the games.
There is no law or game more important than the life of another.
There is no property right that trumps life.
There is no economic system that can truly justify hunger and deprivation when we have plenty.
No religion that calls for the arbitrary torture and death of other people can truly claim to represent the divine.
There are people who will join and follow such a religion but they are not people of Faith.
Faith is quiet.
Faith is humble. Faith gives freely and expects nothing in return.
Our wounded world needs Faith, not dogma.
Our wounded souls need compassion, not angry politics.
Our suffering children need food and shelter, not guns for racist vigilantes and tax cuts for a corrupt élite.
Faith transcends all religions and all political dogma.
In faith we are one people; this includes the atheist.
Faith does not need belief in a God.
Faith is as simple as bringing a meal to a hungry child to nourish what is human in that child.
Faith does not need to control the minds and bodies of other people.
Faith sets us and everyone around us free.