Can We Trust Life?
Sometimes its hard not to be afraid. We live in a world where bad things happen every day. People often tell us, "Don't be afraid, have faith! Trust in God! The Universe has your back! Everything works towards the greater good!" But I've wrestled with those ideas. How do you know the Universe has my back? There are so many people who will die today in horrible accidents, disease, murder and war. Did the Universe have their back too?
As I wrestle with this question, I find that it points back to myself. What am I if not an expression of the universe itself? I am not separate from nature, but one and the same process as it. In fact, we might even say that human beings are the most evolved thing in the known universe. The cosmos has brought into being consciousness, something that can think, feel, and ponder its own existence.
So what is my own fundamental core? Is it good or is it fundamentally apathetic, indifferent, or even evil? My feeling is that my own core is love. To me that seems to be the bottom line; the only thing that is important in the end. And I think that is true of everyone else too. No matter how evil people can be, it seems to me that deep down, everyone just wants to love and to be loved. I think it is our very essence.
Even if you doubt your own goodness or the goodness of humanity when you look at the current state of affairs, remember who we, as a whole, look up to. Who do we see as exemplars and good human beings? Jesus, Gandhi, MLK, Buddha, Mandela...all people who taught and worked for peace, love, justice, and compassion. As a whole we don't look at Hitler and think he had it right.
So then, if these people represent the highest expression of the universe, then I conclude that this is what the universe is about at its core. I reason that love is fundamental to life. Even though I can't understand everything or know why things happen, I can feel in my own heart that love exists in me and is central to me. Since I am an expression of this universe I trust that love is at its core too - and maybe somehow at some higher level, things are as they are meant to be.
Really, the stance of faith and trust is fundamentally necessary for life. Of course, fear is at times necessary in order for us to protect ourselves and survive, but it cannot be fundamental to life in the way that trust is. If the core default setting was doubt, fear and contraction, how could anything ever get started? No one would get out of bed in the morning. Everyone has to trust that the sun will rise in the morning, that they will be able to take their next breathe, that their brains and bodies will work, otherwise we would all be going insane. So trust and letting go are necessary for life.
This all leads me to believe that no, the universe did not bring us into being just so that we can suffer. We are not alive as some kind of cruel joke. While suffering is indeed an inescapable part of our lives, I don't think that's why we are here. If it were better for life not to exist then I think it would have found a way to end itself. But it hasn't. Life has been going on in the universe for a very, very long time. So life must be worth it. I think ultimately we are here to experience love, joy, wonder, and beauty. That is what all of life is guiding us towards. So I believe we can and should adopt an attitude of trust towards life, and believe that everything works towards the good.