Well, that’s it. My latest wee book baby has just been dispatched into the big, wide world of religious/spiritual literature.
Frankly, it’s a bit of a relief to have it finally fly free into the hearts and minds of its present and future readers?
Really? How come?
Well, I much prefer to write of Divine Love and its compassionate Otherness, rather than tackle the painful issues of religious addiction and spiritual abuse. I’m a bit of a mystic at heart, happy to spend my days walking in the solitude of Silence, drinking in the vibes of both Self and Source. I’m much happier penning a wee poem, than delving into the dysfunctional world of religious group dynamics and control.
And yet, these topics must be considered and brought into the Light of day. Many thousands have travelled the same path as myself, and it mainly for those that I write. Those who gave their early life energy to a particular take on the Christian faith, one that ultimately proved to be delusional and debilitating. In the idealism of youth, we are prone to follow Christian gurus and their packaged theologies. Sometimes, we grow out of it without any signs of inner angst, sometimes not. It is for this later band of the walking wounded that I’ve written ‘Jesus, Junkies & Abuse’; the burnt-out ex-devotees of the Christian world.
Recently, an old Christian friend of mine got in touch with me, a little upset that I keep writing about these difficult issues. Encouraging me to ‘get over it’, as he himself had done through years of psychological counselling, he admonished me to move on. A still dedicated, albeit more open-minded member, of a large Belfast Charismatic church, he just can’t understand why I keep going over ‘old ground’. Now, I can understand where he’s coming from, and yet I reckon that the topics concerned aren’t merely personal, but ones that must be aired and regularly discussed by the Christian community at large.
On a personal level, I have moved on, although the scars of my past religious zealotry will remain with me till the day I die. My somewhat sensitive heart will always be toward my fellow pilgrims, those who have ditched Jesus and his God along with the abusive religious bath water. If my wee writings can encourage those damaged by dysfunctional religious belief and practice to somehow re-engage with the Nazarene and his Source Divinity, then my literary efforts will not have been in vain.
For those who have to ‘put up’ with the evangelising, somewhat targeted zeal of friends, family and work colleagues, I’ve tried to explain the religious adherent’s mindset, so as to better understand them, and find a way of ‘coping’ with their constant salvation nagging. Let’s be honest, it’s not easy, sharing the same psychological space with a religious junkie. Not easy at all. The protection of Self and its inner space must be paramount, as we’re bombarded by guilt and shame, the dual conversion tools lobbed towards us in a frenzy of evangelistic concern. May JJ&A help such targets of Christian love maintain their sense of psychological equilibrium in the face of such constant manipulative pressure.
So now it’s back to walking among the forests and hedgerows of rural England. For it’s there that I pick up the faint whisperings of Glory, the One outside the minefield of metaphysical rivalry and religious warfare. Hopefully there, among the leafy shades of early Autumn, I can recharge my batteries and find the inspiration for what comes next!
With much love