There seems to be a horrible disservice that was done to many of us as we were children learning about G-d. That is allowing us to see or believe that G-d is an old, white-bearded man sitting on a throne up in the clouds. I understand that this image my be logical or even resonate with kids, who probably would have a hard time grasping the really complex issues as to what G-d really is and is not. But still…
This is not what G-d is. While G-d is in fact everything, and could be this… this image puts people’s brains in a very specific place, which makes understanding certain things nearly impossible. For a brain that is, dare I say, and I include myself in this, very limited in scope and deep comprehension, to think of G-d as an old man in a chair who controls everything… every detail… every person and animal… like a marionette or puppet master… is hard to fathom and comprehend and easy to question and doubt.
The image for us is human. After all, we were “created in G-d’s image”… and so we then look at ourselves and think there is no way I would be able to do this and do that. It is impossible. It does not register and is completely illogical. I can barely remember a thought that popped into my brain two seconds ago, so how could I, or any “human” possibly control everything???
This is what I envisioned as G-d because it was what I was taught… what I saw in textbooks, and art books and on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. What I have learned, as an adult and later in life, is that G-d is one, G-d is everything and if you want to distill it into a more simple and relatable idea… yet still complex and mind-blowing and hard to wrap one’s head around is… G-d is, in fact, energy.
There is energy in everything… humans, animals, vegetables and minerals. There is energy in each and every one of us, as well as in a table or rock. There is energy in the universe. What I realized, thanks to this class and Rabbi Avi Rabin, is that we are ALL CONNECTED BY ENERGY. I sense this all the time now… well, when I allow myself those moments of being holy and aware… but they seem to occur often as I walk my dog. As my feet move along the cement and tar covered streets, they are touching the ground… they are making an impact… having an affect, no matter how small or seemingly inconsequential. I am, in a small way, connected to everything else that touches the same ground… the same earth. I am connected to other people, animals, plants, the cars driving towards me and away from me, trucks, garbage cans, etc. We are all connected by the very same planet, even though we may be thousands of miles away. We are all on the same terrestrial plane.
So if we are energy and Hashem is energy, this is how we connect to Hashem. We direct our energy to doing Mitzvah and good. To learning Torah and connecting and trying to come closer to Hashem.
If we are energy, which we are… and if we are souls, which we are… then what we put out into the world HAS TO HAVE AN AFFECT AND IMPACT ON EVERY SINGLE THING… EVERY SINGLE PERSON. Even if we cannot see it, my steps on the hard black road, have an impact. I am still stepping on ground, moving stones, making a sound, putting pressure on the ground I walk on, and so I am physically having an impact on the world. Energy is even stronger and more important, so the energy I put out absolutely has an effect, not only on me, but on others around me.
I may NEVER see the results of what I do, but if I live my life always doing the right thing, always trying to stay positive, always working toward self-improvement and bettering myself, people will be affected by that and people will benefit from that. People will see that and hopefully strive for the same behavior. And we don’t do it for recognition or reward, or at least we shouldn’t. We do it because it is the right thing to do. To live in a positive world with positive energy is a necessity. Is this always easy? Heck, no… But this is our challenge… this is our test.
So as we walk in nature and hear the words of the wonderful and brilliant Rebbe Nachman in our minds and souls… let us see the holiness in nature… in animals… in plants and trees and birds… and most importantly, in each other. We are all energy and we are all connected.