I always thought that when I had that one definitive experience that made me believe, I would no longer wonder. I have had that experience – more than once. And still I wonder.
It’s a strange world that we live in. Certainly, many things are predictable merely by following the logic of natural law. Yet when strange things happen, the first place I go isn’t to logic. In the moment I move into intuition instead. In the moment, I trust my gut.
It is only afterward that the application of logic comes in, and that logic persists and grinds away at the experience. In the aftermath of a strange occurrence, I run it through my brain time and time again looking for any alternative explanation to a paranormal one. Truth be told, I can always come up with alternative explanations. Every single time.
Sometimes those alternative explanations pass my “gut test.” They feel true to me. At other times, they don’t ring true.
I’ve always wanted to be someone who could just ride along on pure faith, trusting those hits of intuition that seem to indicate what’s true and what’s not. But I was blessed (or cursed – depending on how you look at it) with a very logical and active brain. It is a dichotomy I’ve struggled with all of my life. Quite often, my brain and my gut don’t agree. That’s why I’m the kind of person who has always had to be smacked in the face with something so indisputable that my brain and gut flow into alignment.
For years, I resolved this conflict by putting my faith in science. Science was, to my way of thinking, concrete and irrefutable. Yet, as Einstein would tell you, even “laws” of physics turn out to have some wiggle room in them. It’s true that we do have a pretty good understanding of how our physical world works on a macro scale. But when you get down into the nitty gritty of the itty bitty parts and particles of our universe, high strangeness takes over and all we can do is theorize as to what the heck is going on.
If the world was black and white, then it would all be so easy to understand. Everything could ultimately be answered by a yes or no. It could be represented by a one or a zero. But I think we can all agree on this: Ones and zeroes only get you so far before mysterious forces come into play.
Don’t believe me? Take a look at artificial intelligence. It only goes so far before it breaks down. AI, which is based on those ones and zeroes, has never matched the subtleties of human behavior. Self-awareness – a trait of human consciousness – can’t currently be duplicated with binary technologies.
And so here I sit on two sides of the aisle. On the one hand, my brain is a computer that processes the ones and zeroes, sifting through information in clearly logical and well thought-out ways. On the other hand, I am an intuitive being who can understand something in an instant without so much as a logical thought.
For many, what reconciles those two things is faith. And maybe that’s where I fall short. Faith is something I’ve only found very occasionally and only for little miniscule flashes of time. For me, faith has always been ephemeral at best and often illusive.
It is a struggle – perhaps the struggle of my life. Maybe that is my purpose here in this lifetime – to find sustained faith. Maybe I have found it and I just don’t recognize it. Or maybe it eludes me alotgether. I may not even know what it is I am looking for – but I believe I will know it when I find it. In tiny flashes, I have found it and I have known it. In the moment, poof, there is faith. And as long as I remain in the moment, the faith remains, as well. It is only when I slip out of that present focus and my mind wanders to the past or explores the future that my experience of faith dissolves and I am left waiting for the next moment to come along.
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