A confession - I don't attend any type of services because I am relentlessly skeptical of (and often outraged by) organized religion. In that vein, I found this book refreshing in its honesty about the ethereal and context-driven Word. Isn't faith supposed to be about accepting that we don't know? About seeing God through the prism of our own experience, with all the baggage we carry with us every day of this life's journey? if so, this book is closer to my own spiritual perspective than anything I've ever read.
i can still hear my mother and father talking about the controversy their "mixed marriage" caused. He was Protestant. She is Catholic. The idea that love should be defined - or defiled - by any place of worship feels so wrong to me.
But there is also part of me that has adopted a position of overt hypocrisy. I attend religious weddings and funerals and baptisms. I sit through the occasional Midnight Mass (held at 10 PM...). I rationalize this by saying I'm doing it for those I love, out of respect for their beliefs. And I try - I really try - to learn from the service, to take it back with me into my everyday life. But the last time I was at church, the priest told us we were an army, and non-believers were the enemy. He didn't come right out and say it, but that was his message. One that disgusted and appalled me.
so when someone proclaims that "God says..." Or "Jesus taught us..." I sit there and mentally turn away. The emotional connection is lost. When I read this book, I understood why. There is no one truth. There is only what we believe, and embracing that diversity of thought while seeking consensus on the major tenets. Frankly, that's OK with me.