My parents were very religious. We went to Mass every morning, and said the rosary every night when I was growing up. (I told this story once to a fellow Catholic. She asked, “Did you say the rosary on your knees?” I admitted that we sat in chairs. “Lightweight,” she declared).
My mother presented God as the Great Accountant. He saw everything, and at the end of my life, the good deeds better outweigh the bad if I wanted to spend the hereafter in Heaven.
As an adult, I rejected these ideas, but there are remnants in my psyche of this way of thinking. I always have this nagging feeling that there is something that I should be doing, but I’m not sure what it is. Also, I frequently feel as if I am being watched.
I found this theory on Andrew Sullivan. It’s from a physics blog. Apparently, there is a void that is created between the hot sun and the cold universe. And life emerged to redistribute the energy that is created:
in this sense, life is a very natural thing, which emerged simply to satisfy basic physical laws. Our “purpose,” so to speak, is to redistribute energy on the Earth, which is in between a huge potential energy difference caused by the hot Sun and cold space. Organisms evolve via natural selection, but at the most basic level, natural selection is driven by the same thermodynamic principle: increasing entropy and decreasing energy differences. The natural processes from which life emerged, then, are the same processes that keep life going – and they operate on all timescales.”
I find this idea strangely comforting. Maybe it’s because between going to law school, raising a son and the occasional blog post, I am super good at redistributing energy. I can stop worrying about the Great Accountant. Life is about getting in there and moving energy around.
It also means that our ancient relatives were onto something with their pagan rituals. We really are children of the Sun. Next time someone asks me my religion, I am going to say “Sun Worshipper.”