“Niin olen minä niinkuin sinä,
niin olen minä sitä mitä sinäkin.”
Mokoma – Nujerra ihminen
“I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth. I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son, our Lord…”
So countless times I’ve been sitting on the church bench and by the command of priest reluctantly stood up to confess my faith. So many times I’ve wondered that how can I believe in God or in Jesus when I don’t see them? Do they really exist? Will Jesus come back?
For thousands of years know religion has destroyed people, nations and ignited wars. There’s always been a need to guide heretics to the right path. So many losses, so pointless battles. Ultimately it doesn’t matter wheter humans believe in God, Allah, Buddha, Krishna or nothing. What matters is that will the religion give people what they desire, are people happy in faith and do they treat each others with love, appreciation and respect. As Jonne Aaron said in Vain Elämää tv-series “If someone wants to bow to the pie soup can and from that gets fullfillment to his life, let us grant it to him”
I grew in Southern Ostrobothnia where the Awakening, A Lutheran religious movement was very common amongst people. Even before I was born, when I still was in my mothers womb I attended my first Herättäjäjuhlat (annual summer festival for the people of the Awakening). I got used to going to Herättäjäjuhlat and it came an annual tradition for me. When I had to choose where I’m going for my confirmations chool the natural selection was to follow the steps of my sister and brother and go to Aholansaari, the place where Paavo Ruotsalainen, the father of the Awakening movement lived.
I feel strongly that I “herited” the religion of the Awakening.Both of my fathers parenst and mothers parents were part of that religion. I remember as a child singing the Hymns of Zion in my grandparents place and looked the picture above my grandparents bed which had embroided the text: “Every morning is a new grace.” In my mother’s parents home the teachings of the Awakening could be heard in words but not seen in actions. Others were judged, disapproved and only certain kind of people were accepted to the religious circle.
Until to my twenties I was also part of the Awakening cirle: I took part to conventicles, events and sang on the choir. However at some point my mind started to question of it all. I asked where God is and wondered why I constantly psalm about my own smallness, wickedness, make myself nobody in the eyes of God. The religion started to lose its meaning, I no longer had faith in God.
For me the hardest part in the religion was that someone from outside, God, who I even haven’t ever met, would define who should I be as a human and what kind of things I can or cannot do. Also it was difficult to lower myself below God because I felt like I don’t belong there. I didn’t regarded myself as a sinful person who needs God forgiveness and mercy to get a salvation.
Even today I don’t have faith in God. At least not in the form that most of people have faith. Years ago I seperated myself from the church, the bible and hymns disappeared from my shelf and I haven’t set a foot to the church. If there’s something spiritual in my life then it’s energy. I have a strong believe that surrounding us and in each of us is energy that we can have an affect on. I feel like I’m one with the universe; in me flows the same energy that surrounds the whole world.
As God created the heaven and earth so will I create my own future. I’m the creator of my own life. In my eyes this makes me equal to God, not inferior. The God is in me or I could even say: I am God.
With love, Anu-Maarit