I love spring. This morning I had to drive to Newcastle. I saw daffodils at the side of the road detoxing winter. I saw Lapwings and curlews arriving for their nesting season. After a while the breeze drew the clouds aside to reveal a shiny-blue sky. I saw grouse too. I love grouse, my favourite little creature.
Anyway, as I drove my mind wondered onto the subject of love.
Love is chemistry – true. It floats around the blood stream transporting nice feelings to every corner of the body. All objects of experience must have a material form otherwise we could not experience them. Love is no different. That doesn’t mean to say love isn’t real. All things spiritual, at some point or another, must become material if they are to be experienced – experience is, after all, experience of something. Even the experiencer is a thing to be experienced in the experience. To say that God is embodied in religion and chemicals, is not to say God is an illusion or an invention by evolution to help our species survive so that our gene-pool can be continued. God-in-the-world is a thing to be experienced. God-in-the-world points to God-outside-the-world, beyond our experiencing selves.
Love is sound and shape too. The sound of words spoken, the shape of words written. Love is the shape of the things that we love, particularly the people we love. Love is the sound of a bird in the morning, of children playing. Love is in the stories that we tell about ourselves and each other. And yes, love is the sound and shape of the chemicals in our bodies.
Halfway there and I stop in a café to lose myself in a cup of tea and a slice of delicious cake. Sitting in a café is like sitting in a library of living stories. People are narrating their plot-lines, themes and points of view. I was sitting alone and editing my story. Maybe spring and daffodils have written love back in.
Buddhists and Mystics, when they encounter emptiness or nothingness in contemplation or meditation, have managed to take themselves to the boundary between reality and the Ultimate (or Absolute). Beyond that point it is impossible to go.
Newcastle was where I left it. Now to find a car-park.
If God (or chance if you like), has taken the trouble to create this big, big universe over millions of years just for us to experience love, then it has not been a waste of time.