Defining God

First, let me start off this post by saying that I don’t believe any single definition can accurately describe God. The only descriptive phrase that sums up God as a being is written in many different holy books – God Is what God Is. So, who or what is God? To see the truth of this question, one must first look at the dual nature of God. God created the universe from inside the void. Science tells us that in its base form, all matter is energy. Even at the quantum level, energy cannot be destroyed or created, only changed in form and function. In order to create the substance of existence in all its splendor, God used the only energy / matter available – that of the Divine.

Let me clarify that God is a conscious being. Everything extant is from God yet the Divine Consciousness exits within and without the material universe.  In principal, humanity does in fact echo the reality of God. To define a mortal person accurately you would have to describe his or her body and consciousness or personality separately. Mind and body together equal the whole of being. If we apply the same equation to God, The Divine Consciousness permeates every quanta of existence while also residing outside the physical realm.

Using language in an attempt to define God is extraordinarily inadequate. How can the human mind wrap itself around the concept of eternity?  By applying labels to God do we trivialize the Divine while searching for an answer to the great question of why are we here? What is my purpose? Religious prophets throughout human history have Seen God and attempted to describe the experience within the bounds of their cultural upbringing and the prevailing religious or philosophical beliefs of their era. Adam, Moses, Joshua, Mohammed, Siddhartha… the impetus for their faith is not as obvious as a literal interpretation of their respective teachings would have you believe, particularly given that much of what was written down was influenced in part by the political motivations of each subsequent editor. It is frustrating that we have not yet discovered a manuscript personally written by Joshua of Nazareth as I believe such a gospel would clarify much that is misunderstood of the original Christian teachings while discounting additions to the material made by generations of men and women (mostly men) who have not personally Seen God.

It would be tempting to simplify even the basic questions to require a simple answer but the result would be confusing at best. Consider the following: Is God male or female?  Well, the answer is both and yet neither. God has both feminine and masculine aspects simultaneously but God is not mortal and therefore gender is not truly applicable as a defining factor. Nor is it relevant to the discussion.  Labeling the Divine as male or female so that human consciousness can better relate to the Divine is misleading at best and in my opinion, wholly irresponsible. We cannot place mortal limits on God. God is everything and God is eternal, but perhaps most accurately, God simply Is. Nothing more and nothing less.

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About William Knox

Rev. William Knox is the founder and current Chancellor of the Contemporary Pagan Alliance. Ordained in 1995 as an interfaith minister, he serves as senior priest at the Sanctuary of Light in Ravenswood,WV. and is an invested brother in the Shanddite Order of Pagan Secular Monks.
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4 Responses to Defining God

  1. I admit our attempts to define and understand God is just that an attempt. We spend a lot of energy trying to understand every aspect of the container we are enveloped in called the muti-universe. I think thats what God wants us to do. Taking time to figure out the creator is a worthy endeavor. We used to think the world was flat and now we know better. I think at the end of lives we will have to answer why we didn’t bother to find out. I know if I were God I would be bothered by that. I just want to make sure God is happy with my feeble attempts.

    • William says:

      Thank you for your comment. I agree that it is important to be an observer in our own lives and to come to the realization that we are beings of consciousness, capable of choosing from many possibilities to foster self growth (or self destruction if we so choose). I can say, with absolute certainty, that God does not see your attempt to grow spiritually as trivial or meager.

  2. YES, William, you speak the Truth. I bow before you, kindred soul.

  3. William, I agree with you that all of creation has a piece of the Divine within it. Each and every one of us has it. Think of how we could change the world if we all allowed that Divine light from within to shine, rather than shadowing it with fear! What a wonderful path you have embarked upon! Thank you for sharing your thoughts and for allowing your light to shine.

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