There is an interesting phenomenon that occurs when a person (not unlike myself) becomes quite convinced of the existence of God and beyond that of His intimate presence within us, and it was brought home to me last night in a most penetrating manner. I suspect that the title of this post gives away a clue as to what I'm speaking of.
Doubt. It's a real bugger and as I'm finding out it never goes away, it just changes in nature.
There has always been doubt for me when speaking of God. As I have indicated in previous posts to this point it has generally been the same kind of doubt that most people have which is to say 'is He here?'. Normal, everyday, regular and understandable doubt. The kind that reflects the notion of "I can't see Him and therefore I have my doubts that He's really here". Fair enough.
But that changes or rather evolves. You see I can no more ask that question since I am actually quite sure now that He's here. But it hit me big time last night that now it is a whole new experience of doubt.
I was watching a movie called The Pianist. For those who have never seen it, it is a movie about (drum-roll please) a pianist named Wladyslaw Szpilman (oy!) who experienced first-hand (it is autobiographical) what it was like to live in the Warsaw Ghetto during World War II. Funny thing about movies depicting the Holocaust, or any other form of man's inhumanity to man for that matter, you don't need to see the actual cruelty, the blood and gore, that defines these events. It is enough, and sometimes even more powerful to merely depict the everyday life, the 'normal' existence of the people caught up in it. And I think it is exactly because of that which is going unspoken. We don't need to have it play out right in front of our eyes to know the magnitude of it all and for it to make us squirm in our discomfort.
And this doubt that occurs is not a doubt that questions God's existence, it is a doubt that asks "how could you?" (let this happen). It asks "where were you?" (while this was happening), and "why did you?" (let this happen).
It is a doubt that questions the very goodness of God, the lovingkindness of God of which is so often spoken in our religious texts, the intimate, loving presence of Him in every moment of our lives.
And it makes me realize that I was far more comfortable with the other kind of doubt, you know the one which asks if He's really here because it's easier to get through the day with that kind of doubt.
And I'm left with this nagging feeling that I never had back in those good old days of regular old doubt. And the nagging feeling is that while I am asking Him those questions He is looking right back at me and asking 'how could YOU' let this happen and 'where were YOU' when this was happening and 'why did YOU' let this happen?